Ahhh...the silence

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by Talon Six, Dec 16, 2012.

  1. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2012
    Location:
    The Gulf Coast
    #1
    I have a desk here in my home office with a PC on the left and my Mac mini on the right. As I sit here typing this, my PC has been grinding away at the HD for about an hour now doing god-knows-what (nothing is running but background programs) while my mini is totally silent, as usual. Between the PC fans and the constantly reading/writing HD, my PC is becoming more and more annoying.

    Unfortunately due to my work, I need to maintain a PC until I retire in 3-5 years. I thought about running boot camp on the mini, but I also need to feed my PC gaming addiction once in a while.

    At any rate, just some random musings about why I love my Mac!

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    Here's a picture of my setup:

    [​IMG]
     
  2. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2012
  3. macrumors 6502a

    Ayemerica

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2011
    Location:
    Philadelphia
    #3
    Couldn't agree more on the silence , it's like the mini shuts up and just works and doesn't let you know it. Which Mac mini down you have?
     
  4. thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2012
    Location:
    The Gulf Coast
    #4
    I've got the mid 2011 model with the discreet graphics. I recently added a 512MB SSD, so it's a little powerhouse.
     
  5. macrumors 6502a

    Ayemerica

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2011
    Location:
    Philadelphia
    #5
    Nice, I had the 2011 base line and I put in a 64gb as my boot drive . I bought the 2012 baseline and waiting for my 30 days to make sure everything thing is ok before adding the 128 SSd and a fusion drive
     
  6. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2012
    Location:
    NY
  7. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 3, 2011
    #7
    Hi, one qeustion, what is the GPU performance of your mid 2011 mini? Are there any glitches in mac os x, or all animations, transitions are smooth?

    thx.
     
  8. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2009
    Location:
    Phoenix, AZ
    #8
    I couldn't agree more. After building several PC's through the late '90's and until about 3 years ago I found I was always fighting the noise issue. With each successive build I managed to reduce the the noise a bit more than the previous machine but never managed to eliminate it totally. Then I broke down an bought my first mini and it was blissful silence, especially with a SSD(s). I'd have hard time going back to the even my quietest previous machine after the total silence of the mini.
     
  9. macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2007
    #9
    So it really has nothing to do with work then, unless your work requires PC gaming. :p
     
  10. thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2012
    Location:
    The Gulf Coast
    #10
    I can't speak to the technical details of graphics performance. However I can tell you that it is butter smooth. The biggest graphics performance increase for the desktop appeared to be when I bumped the machine up to 16GB RAM and added the SSD.

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    No, it's more than that. My company uses proprietary software for form viewing/editing that does not exist for OSX. Also in order to view s/mime encrypted emails on my company web mail client, I need a PC. :(
     
  11. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 3, 2011
    #11
    Well, sounds good, I am afraid that 256 VRAM is not enough for 27 incher
     
  12. macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2007
    #12
    Sure, but that can almost certainly be overcome with bootcamp or a virtual machine. It's only the gaming that would be an insurmountable problem.
     
  13. thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2012
    Location:
    The Gulf Coast
    #13
    You're right, of course. I suppose that for the moment I like to keep things separate. I may try bootcamp one of these days and see how it goes.

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    I was worried a bit too when I picked up the Thunderbolt Display last summer, but it runs extremely smoothly. I'm a smoothness snob too, so take it for what it's worth.
     
  14. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 3, 2011
    #14
    great news:D thx mate:D
     
  15. macrumors 6502

    Mattjeff

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2008
    #15
    These things are whisper quiet for sure! Coming from a MBP 15 where the fans have nowhere to hide this is bliss.

    I love gaming myself but for my needs I found it better to just stay with my PS3. I would love mouth watering graphics the PC can offer but at the price I can't bite the bullet. Mini for casual games and everything computer related and a PS3 for gaming addiction.
     
  16. macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2011
    #16
    Bootcamp or a program such as VMWare Fusion is identical to running Windows on a PC... except it is running on a Mac. Bootcamp is the way to go if you need more RAM than would be available when running OS X and Windows simultaneously. I set-up a Fusion/Windows system for a physician's practice that can handle some demanding medical software as well as Dragon Dictate. The only limitation is the 8GB RAM limit for the 2010 Mini; upgrading to a 2012 Mini with its 16GB limit should take care of that.

    If and when you give up your day-job and high-end gaming you can run Windows on your Mac if you still want it for other reasons. After the novelty wears-off you won't think twice about it...

    I know what you mean about the silence... My NewerTech MiniStack external drive enclosures are much noisier. Since the new MiniStack interferes with my WiFi when running USB 3.0, I'm going to return it and get the Mercury Elite Pro enclosures that do not have a fan.
     
  17. thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2012
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    The Gulf Coast
    #17
    I'd give up my day job long before giving up high-end gaming. :D
     
  18. TennisandMusic

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2008
    #18
    Errr...if you put an SSD in the PC, it would be silent too...
     
  19. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2007
    #19
    Errr... not necessarily.
     
  20. NMF
    macrumors 6502a

    NMF

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2011
    #20
    SSD + good PC case w/ sound dampening foam (i.e. the Define R4) + being conscious about noise when purchasing case fans and heatsinks = silent powerhouse PC.
     
  21. TennisandMusic

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2008
    #21
    Errr, yes!

    What do you think is different from a Mac Mini with an SSD and a PC with an SSD? They both tend to have fans, though it is possible to make your PC fanless. Try that with a Mac Mini. :D

    Without a moving hard drive, and with low RPM fans, the PC is silent.

    Mac Mini's still will rev up their fans when they get going, so in a way the PC wins.

    Don't get me wrong, Mac Mini's are cool (thinking of grabbing a 2012!), I just thought it was weird the OP complained about his PC hard drive chugging away, while the Mini makes no noise. Then he explains he put an SSD in the Mini.

    That's like complaining your car "just won't drive", though you fail to mention you never put any gas in it.
     
  22. macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2012
    Location:
    Perth, Western Australia
    #22
    The lack of noise was such a refreshing thing about using my mini when i first got it.

    It was wierd being able to work in total silence. Ditto for the ipad.


    Unfortunately, my 15" mbp sounds like a jet turbine when it does any real work :-\


    edit:
    Yes, the mini has a fan. Yes you can load it up and make it audible. However compared to most PCs I have ever used, the vast majority of the time it is not audible at all.
     
  23. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2012
    #23
    Really beautiful set up! My desk is such a mess! I think this is on par with he new imac for form factor.

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    Sometimes the more powerful graphics cards have fans on them so it's not just the HD that can make noise on a pc.
     
  24. macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2009
    #24
    What you are really missing is the fact that it is a "gaming pc" which probably means he has a decent video card that probably has giant fans on them. For gaming, there are SOME video cards that make reduced noise, but in the end Video cards are probably what is really making all the noise (and possibly some cheap case fans as well).

    I have 4 external hard drive cases that each house 4 hard drives in my office. Even with a fan in each case I barely notice all 16 of those hard drives, but I do notice the fans from my two video cards in my Mac Pro.
     
  25. macrumors newbie

    danbeckemeyer

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2012
    #25
    I'm a hybrid Windows/Mac user as well. My home office is running a Franken-PC that I built about 6 years ago :eek: and is really showing its age. I used to do a lot of PC gaming but my casual years are hitting me now and an Xbox is good enough. The heatsink broke loose a while back and I did a little "homestyle construction" to fit it back in. The fans are loud enough to hear across my home and one of them is making a constant rattling sound (wires?).

    My wife and I each have iPhones and I had won 2 iPads for us in a contest back in March. I use a 27" loaded iMac at work everyday. We also purchased an AppleTV when we moved and cut the cable. Apple's gravitational pull is just too much to bare, and I am reaching for a Mac Mini here soon.. :cool:
     

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