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Old Sep 21, 2009, 03:09 AM   #1
VirtualRain
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2009 Mac Mini for HTPC: How much RAM?

How much RAM do I need to run Plex and playback 1080p MKV's with a bit of headroom? I don't want to buy excessively more than I need.

Thanks!
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Old Sep 21, 2009, 03:21 AM   #2
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You will need 4GB to run smoothly.
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Old Sep 21, 2009, 04:19 AM   #3
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One GB is plenty for Plex, but you might go with 2 gb just to keep the OS happier.
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Old Sep 21, 2009, 05:10 AM   #4
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Dump 4GB of RAM In it and it should run comfortably.
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Old Sep 21, 2009, 09:38 AM   #5
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4 gb is overkill for a Plex box. It only uses a couple hundred megabytes, even for 1080p content.
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Old Sep 21, 2009, 09:43 AM   #6
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Mine is more than happy with 2GB in it. Still plenty of free RAM available.
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Old Sep 21, 2009, 09:45 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MAYBL8R View Post
You will need 4GB to run smoothly.
Completely unfounded and lacking any real evidence of being true.

As stated, Plex runs on 1 GB smoothly and loves 2GB but never really makes use of it. 2GB can work without issue, even using iTunes. I've done all of this but opted for 4GB just to ensure I could make the most of the machine for other tasks if I wanted.
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Old Sep 21, 2009, 09:46 AM   #8
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I've run plex with 1,2 and 4gb. It runs fine with 1,2 and 4 depending on if the media is local or on your network. 1gb suffers odd stutters when streamed over a network ( both pre-n and wired).
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Old Sep 21, 2009, 10:06 AM   #9
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My 1.86 gHz, 2 gb, 9400m MacBook Air plays straight Blu-ray rips using Plex without any problems. Since the 2009 Mini is effectively the same (but with faster cpu and hard drive), it can only be better with 2 gb. Certainly, 4 gb is overkill for a Plex box.
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Old Sep 21, 2009, 12:51 PM   #10
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Thanks for the replies.

So, if I buy a base model mini with 1GB, I assume I can just add another 1GB CAS7 stick like this?...

http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product...-477-_-Product
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Old Sep 21, 2009, 12:53 PM   #11
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You can add more ram but know technically Apple will say no part of the mini is user upgradable. That stops no one though.
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Old Sep 21, 2009, 01:27 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by VirtualRain View Post
So, if I buy a base model mini with 1GB, I assume I can just add another 1GB CAS7 stick like this?...
If you're going to open up a Mini - spend a few extra bucks on 4GB. Whether you *need* 4GB or not for Plex is irrelevant. The price difference between 2GB and 4GB is just not worth NOT putting in 4GB.
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Old Sep 21, 2009, 01:46 PM   #13
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If you're going to open up a Mini - spend a few extra bucks on 4GB. Whether you *need* 4GB or not for Plex is irrelevant. The price difference between 2GB and 4GB is just not worth NOT putting in 4GB.
Yeah, I suppose you're right... it's only a $50 difference.
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Old Sep 21, 2009, 02:15 PM   #14
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I'm sure the Mini will come with matched pair of sticks (e.g., 2x512 mb).

Quote:
Originally Posted by VirtualRain View Post
Thanks for the replies.

So, if I buy a base model mini with 1GB, I assume I can just add another 1GB CAS7 stick like this?...

http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product...-477-_-Product
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Old Sep 21, 2009, 04:57 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Cave Man View Post
I'm sure the Mini will come with matched pair of sticks (e.g., 2x512 mb).
Actually this isn't true...just picked up a new mac mini about a month ago and it only had a single 1 GB stick installed.
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Old Sep 21, 2009, 05:23 PM   #16
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When my 1gb Mini comes in, I think I am just going to buy a 2gb stick and use the extra $50-70 on HD storage But another part of me says opening the Mini looks like a PITA so might as well make it 4gb and be done with it
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Old Sep 21, 2009, 05:24 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by tbayrgs View Post
Actually this isn't true...just picked up a new mac mini about a month ago and it only had a single 1 GB stick installed.
Correct they come with either 2 2gb sticks or 1 1gb stick
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Old Sep 21, 2009, 09:13 PM   #18
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When my 1gb Mini comes in, I think I am just going to buy a 2gb stick and use the extra $50-70 on HD storage But another part of me says opening the Mini looks like a PITA so might as well make it 4gb and be done with it
While I wouldn't want to have to do it on a regular basis, opening up and working on a mini (at least the new ones) isn't really that difficult--and I certainly am no tech pro. It's actually good that reading about everyone else's trials and tribulations can tend to make one a bit nervous about doing the work oneself but I'd guess that most mistakes are made because either someone wasn't prepared for what they'd encounter or they rushed.

As long as you take your time, it's actually pretty simple--had my RAM and HDD replaced in about 30 minutes and I was paranoid I was going to screw it up. A single clean/smooth, reasonably stiff putty knife is all you need to get the case apart--watch the videos over at OWC and mimic their technique and it's a piece of cake. Other than watching the videos and taking your time, best advice I have is use a magnetized screwdriver to remove the screws as they are pretty small and in some spots, sunken inside holes.

Last edited by tbayrgs; Sep 21, 2009 at 09:19 PM. Reason: my horrible grammar
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Old Sep 21, 2009, 11:06 PM   #19
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or instead of a mac mini, get a ps3. Actually when it comes to home theater, I go PC for their support of blu-ray. The second apple supports it, I'm there, but it looks like it'll be a while.

It would conflict with Steves interests of course, and he'd just hurl ice cream at you.
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Old Sep 22, 2009, 10:58 AM   #20
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lol some the replies you got are mental.
I have the stock 2009 model, ran it for a month with 1GB of ram everything plays fine, inc high bitrate MKV's with DTS.

I put the 2GB kit in that I bought for it, but it certainly wasn't needing it...
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Old Sep 22, 2009, 12:57 PM   #21
VirtualRain
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lol some the replies you got are mental.
I have the stock 2009 model, ran it for a month with 1GB of ram everything plays fine, inc high bitrate MKV's with DTS.

I put the 2GB kit in that I bought for it, but it certainly wasn't needing it...
That's good to know... I might try running it as is (1GB) and see for myself before I get carried away.
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