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View Full Version : Mini upgrade




woodekm
Feb 27, 2008, 07:44 AM
I'll be receiving my refurbed 2.0g mini next week and would like some opinions on how to "max" her out. (Tuesday AM, I checked every two hours on apples website till they showed up in the refurb section).

I would like to order parts now while the mini is in shipping mode.

Cost really isnt that big of a deal, (relatively speaking) so what would you suggest? I know ram can be upgraded and I assume that buying an additional 1G is perfect. Does adding an addition 2g buy me speed or hinder it? (crucials website suggests "Not to exceed manufacturer supported memory"). 3g just sounds odd. I believe it needs to run in even numbers so if adding 2 (making 3 tot) doesnt do anything why buy it? The cost is cheap enough that while Im buying it, I might as well get as much as I can.


Also, would buying a mac pro wifi n card beef the mini up as far as speed goes? If so, how hard to install?

I would have bought a higher end Mac but I just bought a beautiful 22 in Samsung monitor, and cant let that thing go to waste (and dont have the room on my desk for two 20+ in. monitors). What a PERFECT solution for me!

Anything else I could buy to beef her up?

I'll do just about anything because I cant wait to use my first Mac and want it to FLY!!!!

Thanks in advance!

W



dbam987
Feb 27, 2008, 09:33 AM
If you have 3 GB's total in memory you won't have dual-channel speeds. Some people put 4 GB's in (2 x 2GB sticks) so they max out the memory and keep dual-channel. They only see something like 3.3 GB in Mac OSX and Windows though, but it's still a pretty good update. Doing a memory upgrade doesn't void the warranty.

Another thing you could change out is the hard-drive. The drives that the Mini ships in uses 2.5'' drives that spin up to 5400 RPM. You can find 2.5'' drives that are a bit faster, spinning at 7200 RPM. Note that changing this voids the warranty I think.

Lastly, you can indeed change out the wireless module to get the 802.11 N module but the Mini only has one antenna so you won't achive true 'N' wireless network speeds but it will still be quite fast none-the-less.

Edit: It is a bit troublesome to open up the Mac Mini to do the upgrades above, but still very doable. There's a ton of web pages describing the process of how to open up the Mini to perform various things in there.

cruiser1951
Feb 27, 2008, 10:41 AM
This is EXACTLY the reason Apple needs a modular mid-range computer.

gkarris
Feb 27, 2008, 10:43 AM
This is EXACTLY the reason Apple needs a modular mid-range computer.

Or do what Apple wants you to do - buy a new, updated Mini...

dbam987
Feb 27, 2008, 10:50 AM
I agree. One thing I have been thinking about is replacing my desktop with a refurbed Mac Pro desktop but can't see myself to actually doing it until my current desktop bites the dust. It has to be a "natural" death for it :D.

err404
Feb 27, 2008, 11:35 AM
Or do what Apple wants you to do - buy a new, updated Mini...

Unfortunately, as of right now the 2ghz mini, is the latest and greatest :(
Though for casual use, the only thing it really lacks is SR to provide support for 4G RAM and x3100 video.

So long as your not gaming or doing heavy Photoshop filters, the performance will be fine (based on my MB performance which is existentially the same hardware).

For Leopard, I'd upgrade the RAM to 2G or 4G(3.3G usable). 2G is fine, but keep in mind if you want more later, you have to remove all of the old memory.

For you HDD, a faster disk will help some, but the installed disk performs decently. I'd just get a 500G external drive for it.

If your wireless connection is just for the internet, G should be fine. However, if you have other local machines on your network that you are connecting to, it might be a bit slow.

I also just bought a refurb last night. I'm just looking to use it as a headless "home server" for my MB, MBP and Apple TV. I was using a windows box before, but I wanted something quieter and to have a reliable Time-Machine host.

woodekm
Feb 27, 2008, 04:53 PM
Great ! Thanks for the info.

Would this USB 802.11n adapter do anything for speed or is a internal card better? This seems easier but takes up a USB slot.

http://eshop.macsales.com/item/Edimax/EW7718UN/


Thanks again,
W

err404
Feb 27, 2008, 10:31 PM
I haven't used either, but suspect that the USB one would be a bit better due to the dual antennas.
You could also get a second n router/access point and bridge them together. Then connect the mini via the ethernet cable. This should give you the best speed due to higher powered and larger antennas, but it will be tricky to configure compared to the USB one.

ADent
Feb 28, 2008, 01:12 AM
This is EXACTLY the reason Apple needs a modular mid-range computer.


Get a Hackintosh. http://forum.insanelymac.com/index.php?showtopic=76014 .

mrfaize
Feb 28, 2008, 03:41 AM
If you have 3 GB's total in memory you won't have dual-channel speeds. Some people put 4 GB's in (2 x 2GB sticks) so they max out the memory and keep dual-channel. They only see something like 3.3 GB in Mac OSX and Windows though, but it's still a pretty good update. Doing a memory upgrade doesn't void the warranty.



If true would an upgrade above 2GB also not void the warranty as the official max is 2GB?

Thanks