Just how under powered is the mini?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by dornoforpyros, Jun 27, 2006.

  1. dornoforpyros macrumors 68040

    dornoforpyros

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2004
    Location:
    Calgary, AB
    #1
    Hey Folks,

    So my employer has given me the nod to go and price out a mac for our web/graphics department (department = me). Knowing that we'll have to include photoshop, dreamweaver & flash into any purchase we make this obviously isn't going to be a cheap purchase, and I've warned them of this.

    So when it comes to pricing things out I'm wondering if it's even worth my while to include the duo-core mini at all in the pricing. I do a lot of heavy graphics work for both print & web in photoshop & flash. Currently my work PC is a piece of crap with 512mb of ram, so anything is going to be a step up from it. Although my main machine is a 1.8ghz g5 with 2gb ram which I use for working from home 4 days a week.

    So I guess it comes down to this, will a mini cut the mustard at all for this use or am I just tricking myself? And just how slow is Photoshop running through rosetta? I've got PS on my 667 powerbook and it's useable, not great but I can get some work done.


    Ok, this post is getting long and confusing.
    Duo-Core mini for graphics work? Or no dice?
     
  2. Eidorian macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2005
    Location:
    Indianapolis
    #2
    It'll be a bit faster via Rosetta on the Core Duo mini over your PowerBook. Still, if you need native speed, why not go with a refurbished iMac G5? You're going to need lots of RAM for Rosetta on the mini. 2D graphical editing won't be hampered by the integrated video.
     
  3. Dont Hurt Me macrumors 603

    Dont Hurt Me

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    #3
    Whats the budget? I would go for more. Mini's CPU is fine but its integrated graphics handicap it. Let the budget decide and then wait for the new iMacs or PowerMacs this summer. A iMac would give lots of room on your desk.
     
  4. jsw Moderator emeritus

    jsw

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    Mar 16, 2004
    Location:
    Andover, MA
    #4
    No dice for professional work. Well, unless necessary.

    The integrated graphics aren't all that bad, but the lack of a graphics card eats up 80MB, and Rosetta eats up more, and you've got a 2GB ceiling.

    Any idea what the budget is? A low-end PowerMac - especially if you can wait for the anticipated WWDC announcement - is likely your best bet, because no other current Mac supports > 2GB.
     
  5. iGary Guest

    iGary

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  6. dornoforpyros thread starter macrumors 68040

    dornoforpyros

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    Oct 19, 2004
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    Calgary, AB
    #6

    Yeah I figured as much.

    I've got no set budget at this point, it's just more or less I need to provide our options. I'm was just determining if I should price a mini out or not. Just cuz I know if my boss sees the numbers the lower ones will look more appealing.
     
  7. technicolor macrumors 68000

    technicolor

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    #7
    If I were you I would get a middle to upper range G5 Powermac.
    I would not even mention mini and serious graphics work in the same sentence.
     
  8. jsw Moderator emeritus

    jsw

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    #8
    Even more reason to leave it out.

    I loves me my mini, but not for demanding work.
     
  9. Eidorian macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

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    Indianapolis
    #9
    Neh, for Universal video encoding applications it's a nice little video box.
     
  10. iGary Guest

    iGary

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    #10
    Well since all you can run is CS2, there aren't that many options, right?

    I'd price out a dual core 2.0 PM and an iMac, with the caveat that you'd be running under Rosetta...do you already have a monitor there?

    Anyway, that's what I would do. :)
     
  11. jsw Moderator emeritus

    jsw

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    #11
    Oh, like I said, I like the mini. But, given the work the OP is going to be expected to do, along with likely simultaneous use of memory-hogging apps, a 2GB RAM max, a slower/smaller internal drive, slower CPU, and limited ports (including only one video port), and the 80MB penalty, I can't recommend it for professional use.
     
  12. dornoforpyros thread starter macrumors 68040

    dornoforpyros

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    Calgary, AB
    #12
    Yup I've got a decent 19" LCD & closets full of crappy CRTs, could do dual monitors if I wanted :)

    There's also part of me wants them to buy me a macbook pro, although I admit there's no reason for me to need one and I'm sorta pushing this as a "in the long term we need to have a mac in the office" purchase.

    So yeah I'll probably push for a powermac at this point, I'm just concerned with out outdated PPC machines are gonna be after leopard is released.
     
  13. iGary Guest

    iGary

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    #13
    I hear you, but considering the great support still avilable for G4 PPC's in OS X, I think you should probably be OK. Godo luck with the boss. :)
     
  14. dornoforpyros thread starter macrumors 68040

    dornoforpyros

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    #14
    thanks, I'll need it! I think his decision for me to price one out was more based on a recent comment I made of "look what the competitions office has" :rolleyes:

    But hey whatever convinces him
     
  15. XFce macrumors member

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    California
    #15
    Dude you don’t need a mac Mini you need a Power mac
     
  16. CanadaRAM macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

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    Oct 11, 2004
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    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #16
    I have clients very happy with Dualcore iMac 20" on CS2. They migrated from Quicksilver and MDD G4's and for doing professional graphics (magazines) they are productive. In fact given a choice between a G5 Single 1.8 and the Dualcore iMac, their main Photoshop person prefers the iMac.

    They are gonna be over the moon once CS3 comes out.
     
  17. wyrmintheapple macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 8, 2006
    Location:
    Southampton, UK
    #17
    Its surprising just how crazy you people are here...

    Do any of you live in the real world??

    Yes, I am sure there will be some exceptions to this, so don't go spamming how much you use xxx and yyy.

    I don't know many designers round here with the kind of hardware you all seem to think is 'necessary' for pro work.

    In fact, several of them are so cheap they are still working on Titanium Powerbooks and 733Mhz G4 Towers....

    They were working on A3/A2 sized documents for print and advertising nearly 10 years ago on Photoshop 4, with almost the same results.

    tbh, there's not much new in PS 7/CS/CS2 that wasn't in Photoshop 5.5/6.

    An effect here, multiple undo's there, funky text and layer effects. All very nice, but nothing that couldn't be done with older versions with a bit more effort.

    The guy who handles our web site just upgraded to an Athlon X2 system with a 400Gb RAID etc..... from a Duron with 256Mb RAM.

    He's still been producing the goods, impressing the clients and making the money. Why cant the rest of you do it without the latest and greatest??

    If my G3 500 iBook could help me show presentations to clients on the go, modify their artwork and show them previews, why cant a Mac Mini??

    I still remember when a 350Mhz Mach5 604e based PowerMac 9600 was state of the art, and 128Mb RAM was top of the line. Photoshop 4 was producing all the posters and banners and things.

    I cant honestly say that Magazines, posters, banners and other hi res "Pro" work look any different now than my MacUser issues from 1996. At least not radically different, not like you'd expect from something with so much power.
     
  18. generik macrumors 601

    generik

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Minitrue
    #18
    I love my Mini too, but already I am starting to be aware of its shortcomings.

    Even though it is fully tricked out with 2 GB of ram from time to time things just start grinding to a halt as the disk thrashes like crazy...

    I have a feeling that when I get my MBP come WWDC or MWP this Mini will be relegated to more "boring" PC like usage.. like recording my scheduled EyeTV shows, downloading stuff from bit torrent, and acting as a little broadband router.

    QFT.

    Gotta drop in a punch for those who seems to think "Pro apps" are some kind of sacred bits of code that when run on the right system will bring forth some divine incantation.

    Get over it.

    Your so called "Pro apps" will just as happily run on a hacked $1000 Dell running MacOS X as it does on your $2500 Mac. There is nothing special about "Pro" apps. Hell, even games are more demanding these day, with the real time physics and all that rendering going on, unlike your other renderings that can probably take its time and run over the weekend while everyone is away from the office.
     
  19. dornoforpyros thread starter macrumors 68040

    dornoforpyros

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2004
    Location:
    Calgary, AB
    #19
    oh ok, I'll just go onto ebay and find a b&w g3 with 256mb to impress some elitist designer who remembers coding HTML by hand back when it was for the "information super highway" :rolleyes:

    gimma break, some of us have work to do instead of watching beach balls. If you enjoy working on a $1000 dell so be it, I hope you continue to prosper with it. The rest of us have deadlines to meet
     
  20. zap2 macrumors 604

    zap2

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2005
    Location:
    Washington D.C
    #20
    Well the Mac Mini for me is fast, very fast, much faster then my iMac G5, but i have ect 256Mb for RAM to help with the IIG(had 1GB on iMac G5, and 1.25Gb on the Mini. The Reasons i got it was because 1) Small, and i can bring it with me to different places, if need be 2) Can use a ACD(or any other 3rd party display with it



    When i bought my ACD and Mini, i planed to replace the Mini with a Mac Pro/PowerMac when they hit Rev B on intel, but if the Rev B intel is as fast as some early reports say, i might just go with that.


    You might want to wait for a Mac Pro, because it seem you need to do lots of "Pro" stuff. Or go 20'' intel iMac CD
     
  21. Island Dog macrumors 6502a

    Island Dog

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    Sep 11, 2005
    Location:
    St. Cloud, FL.
    #21
    And there are businesses out there who cannot justify the cost of several thousand dollars just for the so-called "pro" work. I do "pro" web, graphics, and print jobs for a business using my iBook.

    So if you have to sit there and "watch" the beachball for a bit, while saving some money, then so be it.

    I know the op says he's the web/design department but I don't think he explained what his workload is either.
     
  22. iGary Guest

    iGary

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    #22
    I do, do you?

    Huh?

    Where did we say it was necessary? He asked for recommendations based on our own experiences...

    Examples?

    Good for him.

    Because I don't have to.

    It can...but why would you want to?


    Lets see it do d course of batch actions on a 12MP image. :rolleyes:

    What does this have to do with anything? It's a matter of productivity more than end product. Apple and oranges.

    Sounds to me like you just have a lot of unrealistic distaste for anyone with a better machine than you.
     
  23. iGary Guest

    iGary

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    #23
    See I don't have time for that - for me, that's losing money.
     
  24. dornoforpyros thread starter macrumors 68040

    dornoforpyros

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2004
    Location:
    Calgary, AB
    #24

    Workload
    In a two week period during our high season it's not uncommon:
    8-10 newspaper ads
    1-2 full page magazine ads
    regular website updates (including flash)
    and whatever brochure or other one off project I have on the go

    I certainly agree that I don't need a g5 quad with 4gb of ram to get my job done, and yes, I could do my job on my 667 tibook, be it slowly. But if my boss is willing to consider a good hardware purchase why should I feel bad about trying to get the best machine/set up I can?
     
  25. Abstract macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    Location:
    Location Location Location
    #25
    I think a Mac Mini will suffice. :eek:

    Run Photoshop under Rosetta for now and get CS3 when it finally comes out. I don't think PS will run much slower relative to the WinPC "piece of crap" you have at work. Even under Rosetta it'll probably still run faster than on that PC.

    Or go to an Apple reseller and see if they sell old G5 iMacs or dual G5 desktops for cheap, then get the current Photoshop CS2 and don't bother upgrading to CS3. There won't be that big a difference if you're using CS2 anyway.....not unless you have an Intel Mac. That may be the best option.
     

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