2009 Mac Mini for HTPC: How much RAM?

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by VirtualRain, Sep 21, 2009.

  1. macrumors 603

    VirtualRain

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2008
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    #1
    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!
     
  2. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2007
    #2
    You will need 4GB to run smoothly.
     
  3. macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    #3
    One GB is plenty for Plex, but you might go with 2 gb just to keep the OS happier.
     
  4. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2009
    #4
    does plex play nicely with SL yet?
     
  5. macrumors 603

    rgarjr

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2009
    Location:
    Los Angeles Area
    #5
    Dump 4GB of RAM In it and it should run comfortably.
     
  6. macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    #6
    4 gb is overkill for a Plex box. It only uses a couple hundred megabytes, even for 1080p content.
     
  7. macrumors member

    freepeacesweet

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2008
    Location:
    Cayman Islands
    #7
    Mine is more than happy with 2GB in it. Still plenty of free RAM available.
     
  8. macrumors Nehalem

    GoCubsGo

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2005
    #8
    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.
     
  9. macrumors demi-god

    Gav2k

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2009
    #9
    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).
     
  10. macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    #10
    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.
     
  11. thread starter macrumors 603

    VirtualRain

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2008
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    #11
  12. macrumors Nehalem

    GoCubsGo

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2005
    #12
    You can add more ram but know technically Apple will say no part of the mini is user upgradable. That stops no one though. ;)
     
  13. macrumors 68000

    hitekalex

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2008
    Location:
    Chicago, USA
    #13
    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.
     
  14. thread starter macrumors 603

    VirtualRain

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2008
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    #14
    Yeah, I suppose you're right... it's only a $50 difference.
     
  15. macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    #15
  16. macrumors 68040

    tbayrgs

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2009
    Location:
    Florida, USA
    #16
    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.
     
  17. macrumors 6502a

    HE15MAN

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2009
    Location:
    Florida's Treasure Coast
    #17
    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 :confused:
     
  18. macrumors 6502a

    HE15MAN

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2009
    Location:
    Florida's Treasure Coast
    #18
    Correct they come with either 2 2gb sticks or 1 1gb stick :D
     
  19. macrumors 68040

    tbayrgs

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2009
    Location:
    Florida, USA
    #19
    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.
     
  20. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2008
    #20
    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.
     
  21. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2008
    #21
    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...
     
  22. thread starter macrumors 603

    VirtualRain

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2008
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    #22
    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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