Mac mini 2.5 i52nd gen vs 3rd gen

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by keema, Jul 7, 2013.

  1. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2011
    #1
    Hi Everyone,

    I just want to ask if it is much better to buy the new model that has a 2.5 3rd gen processor and HD4000 graphics + usb 3.0 or the 2011 model which is 2.5 2nd gen and dedicated AMD video graphics + usb 2.0 only?

    For use it will be a player for my movies with some use for photoshop and Lightroom.

    Does the 2011 model accept 1600mhz 16gb ram's?

    Thanks
    Christian
     
  2. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2012
    #2
    Either one is fine for movies. The AMD graphics are only slightly better than the HD4000. I believe the 2011 model takes 1333mhz up to 16GB ram. So the new base model is similar in speed and has USB 3.0. If you can find a 2011 for a good price then that is a plus. The machines are pretty similar, you just have to weigh the pros and cons. I'd go with the 2011 if you find it cheaper.
     
  3. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2012
    Location:
    British Columbia
    #3
    Christian,

    I bought a 2011 i5 with AMD graphics and it does recognize my 16GB (2x8GB) of 1600Mhz RAM.

    I went with the 2011 so that I could run Snow Leopard.

    Gary
     
  4. thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2011
    #4
    Thanks for the reply.

    Question, does this model run much better with snow leopard than with the new O.S.?
     
  5. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2011
    #5
    How'd you get Snow Leopard to run on a Mid 2011? Mine came with Lion, but I've always heard any attempts to run 10.6 were severely handicapped.

    I'd love to downgrade.
     
  6. Gartbull, Jul 11, 2013
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2013

    macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2012
    Location:
    British Columbia
    #6
    Can't recall as I only tested the hardware with Lion and then immediately started working on installing Snow Leopard.

    btw, installing Snow Leopard wasn't just plug and play, there was some work to be done. Also, I needed another Mac running Snow Leopard to be able to install Snow Leopard on the Mini.
     
  7. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2012
    Location:
    British Columbia
    #7
    Hi Larry,

    The install wasn't the easiest thing to do. I had to use target disk mode from another Mac that was running Snow Leopard and use a restore disk to install.
    I then had to install updated drivers created by newfoundglory for the Mini to run optimally with Snow Leopard.

    Google the following string for more info "nfg mac mini 2011"

    There is also is a long thread on the Apple forums:
    https://discussions.apple.com/thread/3209335?start=0&tstart=0

    Hope that helps.
    Gary
     
  8. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2011
    #8
    Thanks Gary,

    42 Pages! There's my Summer reading I guess.

    Larry


     
  9. macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2012
  10. macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #10
    I would think that the inclusion of USB3 on the Mini 2012 makes it a no-brainer when compared to earlier models.

    USB3 is the most important upgrade to get integrated into Macs in the last 3-4 years.
     
  11. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2011
    #11
    I initially bought a maxed-out 2012 mini, but had the HDMI issue, so returned it and bought a refub 2011 i5 mini with 6630 GPU. Half the price and really happy with its performance. Upgraded it to a 256 SSD with a 1TB HD in a Fusion config, really nice machine.
     

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