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View Full Version : Any New Mac Mini (2.53ghz) Owners Out There??




fragile926
Nov 6, 2009, 10:38 AM
Reason I ask is because I have been dreading the day my 2006 iMac (2.16ghz) would start to die. Well that day has come as my superdrive kicked it, screen is dying and the HD is making wacky noises. It's crying to be put down :(.

I went to my local apple store with my wife and she basically refuses to use the new iMacs because of the glass menagerie that is the new screen. So... That leaves me with 2 options - Mac Mini or Mac Pro. Believe me I would LOVE a new MP but budget-wise spending $2k plus isn't in the bag and I really don't want to buy used.

I am hoping to reach out to anyone who has, or has played with, the new Mac Mini in the 2.53 variety to get a sense of the capabilities. Normal use for us includes: Aperture (RAW photo editing), Handbrake (Ripping my whole DVD library to my iTunes external 2TB), Photoshop/InDesign (Nothing major, but wife sometime does freelance graphic design), and your normal web/email. I just want to make sure I don't gobble this machine whole with the tasks I am going to throw at it.

Thanks for any and all advice!



fa8362
Nov 6, 2009, 12:34 PM
Reason I ask is because I have been dreading the day my 2006 iMac (2.16ghz) would start to die. Well that day has come as my superdrive kicked it, screen is dying and the HD is making wacky noises. It's crying to be put down :(.

I went to my local apple store with my wife and she basically refuses to use the new iMacs because of the glass menagerie that is the new screen. So... That leaves me with 2 options - Mac Mini or Mac Pro. Believe me I would LOVE a new MP but budget-wise spending $2k plus isn't in the bag and I really don't want to buy used.

I am hoping to reach out to anyone who has, or has played with, the new Mac Mini in the 2.53 variety to get a sense of the capabilities. Normal use for us includes: Aperture (RAW photo editing), Handbrake (Ripping my whole DVD library to my iTunes external 2TB), Photoshop/InDesign (Nothing major, but wife sometime does freelance graphic design), and your normal web/email. I just want to make sure I don't gobble this machine whole with the tasks I am going to throw at it.

Thanks for any and all advice!

The 2.53 will be fine for you. The 2.26 would be fine too, but you mention photoshop and photo editing which are RAM intensive, so 4GB of RAM is advisable. You could option the 2.26 with 4GB of RAM at $100 more, but the larger hard drive and 7-10% faster chip of the 2.53 are looking pretty good for only $100 more at that point.

Serif
Nov 6, 2009, 02:26 PM
I've recently bought one of the Mac Mini Servers, essentially the same hardware as the 2.53 GHz version but with the superdrive swapped out for an extra hard drive. I'm very impressed with it.

I have one of the original Aluminium iMacs on my desk. It was top of the line when new with the Extreme version of the Core 2 Duo running at 2.8GHz and 4GB of RAM. Guess what? The little Mini is outperforming it in everything except graphics intensive work and gaming. Sure the processor is marginally slower, but that is more than made up for by faster memory and a faster front side bus. Oh and the mini is running quiet and cool, drawing very little power when not doing anything, something which can't be said for Mac Pros. As I said, a big thumbs up. :)

fragile926
Nov 6, 2009, 02:54 PM
I've recently bought one of the Mac Mini Servers, essentially the same hardware as the 2.53 GHz version but with the superdrive swapped out for an extra hard drive. I'm very impressed with it.

I have one of the original Aluminium iMacs on my desk. It was top of the line when new with the Extreme version of the Core 2 Duo running at 2.8GHz and 4GB of RAM. Guess what? The little Mini is outperforming it in everything except graphics intensive work and gaming. Sure the processor is marginally slower, but that is more than made up for by faster memory and a faster front side bus. Oh and the mini is running quiet and cool, drawing very little power when not doing anything, something which can't be said for Mac Pros. As I said, a big thumbs up. :)

That's great news. I am really leaning towards the 2.53 mini. Never would be gaming on the mini, I have consoles for that. Still not 100% how photoshop is going to run, but I guess my wife's been OK on the 2.16 iMac we have now, so I am assuming that the mini would be able to keep up. I only have 2gb in the current iMac so 4gb on the mini would be nice.

rgarjr
Nov 6, 2009, 03:03 PM
I've recently bought one of the Mac Mini Servers)

do you leave that mini server on 24/7?

Serif
Nov 6, 2009, 03:15 PM
do you leave that mini server on 24/7?

Yes. It's running headless on a set of shelves with printers, external storage and an Airport Extreme. I've just checked and it's actually cool to the touch which makes a nice change to some servers I've had.

I should probably stress that it's being used as a home server rather than for business use, just providing print, file and shared address book and calendar service to myself and my wife. That said, I'd be confident that it would work very well in a small office of 10 or 15 people doing a few more things besides. I'd just want another one as a standby in such a situation as I wouldn't want to have to start messing around with putty knives to get the show back on the road. :)

OddHead
Nov 6, 2009, 03:41 PM
I've recently bought one of the Mac Mini Servers

Please, can you verify in System Profiler in the SATA connections are 3 Gbit like early '09 ones? And after that, do you experience any beachball and system stalling, like could happen with mid '09 MBPs? Thanks a lot, i'm interested in a base model... :)

Serif
Nov 6, 2009, 04:05 PM
Please, can you verify in System Profiler in the SATA connections are 3 Gbit like early '09 ones? And after that, do you experience any beachball and system stalling, like could happen with mid '09 MBPs? Thanks a lot, i'm interested in a base model... :)

Yes, it shows the SATA interface as being an NVidia MCP79 AHCI running at 3 Gigabit with the comment that AHCI version 1.20 is supported.

As regards beach balls, yes I'm seeing them but probably not for the reasons you're worrying about. There's a glitch with the startup of 2 of the admin tools which can cause them to be grayed out and unresponsive for a minute or so, after which they're fine again. I'm hoping this will be fixed in 10.6.2.

I'm not seeing beach balls doing anything that I'd normally do in standard OS X but I guess that's very subjective. I've only used client applications to get a feel for performance when I was setting it up. I won't be using it as a client machine from now on.

smetvid
Nov 6, 2009, 11:29 PM
That's great news. I am really leaning towards the 2.53 mini. Never would be gaming on the mini, I have consoles for that. Still not 100% how photoshop is going to run, but I guess my wife's been OK on the 2.16 iMac we have now, so I am assuming that the mini would be able to keep up. I only have 2gb in the current iMac so 4gb on the mini would be nice.

The 2.53 ghz will be a lot faster then your old 2.16 IMac. First of all the cpu is a lot faster. Second the front side bus and ram speed are higher. Finally having 4GB of ram instead of 2 GB will really help Photoshop fly.

I almost bought a 2.53 ghz Mac Mini but I bought the base model 21.5" IMac instead. I have actually thought about returning the IMac and getting the Mac Mini but I have fallen in love with this 21.5" IMac. For me I still love the Mac Mini but it all came down wanting a bit more processing power for Final Cut Studio. Besides I really wanted the wireless keyboard and magic mouse and by the time you add those plus the 500 GB hard drive you would pay the same price as the base model IMac but the IMac has a great screen and a much larger cpu. Not to mention the option of upgrading to 8GB or 16 GB of ram in the future.

Put it this way. the 2.26 ghz Mac Mini has the exact same specs as the 13" Mac Book Pro. The 2.53 ghz Mac Mini has the same exact specs as the base 15" Mac Book Pro. If those laptops are good for designers then so will the Mac Mini.