2018 Mac mini Teardown: User-Upgradeable RAM, But Soldered Down CPU and Storage

Discussion in 'MacRumors.com News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Nov 9, 2018.

  1. dantroline macrumors regular

    dantroline

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2016
    #251
    Does look nice. About the size of a decent hackintosh and probably the same performance.
     
  2. crsh1976 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2011
    #252
    Because there is is no physical 'drive' component to speak of anymore, it's a bunch of flash chips that are part of the logic board with the T2 processor acting as controller - you want to change the drive, you need a whole new logic board with more GBs soldered on.
     
  3. Trixster macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 18, 2009
    #253
    Maybe this has been asked before, but... with the exclusion of the physical ssd and dvd drive, there has to be loads of empty air in that case...yes? Or is the fan and heatsink that much bigger this time around?
     
  4. grad macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2014
    #254
    Damn you Apple ! Typically, they fix one thing and fail/restrict two. There are (still) too many users that want to upgrade things when/how/where they want, there are even more users that do not have an Apple repair center across the street, and there even more users in the world that can not afford a machine/configuration that costs 4 months in salary. They would rather fix/upgrade things themselves (they are not the incapable idiots that mistakenly break things, as Apple wants everyone to believe) instead of (over)paying for AppleCare, they would like to outlength whatever Apple offers, they would like to install Linux (or anything else) on internal storage, etc.
    You have to be really brainwashed or gullible to believe that Apple does things for the benefit of its users/customers. Too often they look even way greedier than Microsoft, Google, Intel, Nvidia, etc. And yes, T2 IS an unnecessary=evil chip. The current product line, management, decisions, etc might tell us a lot about Apple (and subsequently the whole industry) but that doesn't mean that I have to accept it (aka "deal with it").
     
  5. Tinmania macrumors 68040

    Tinmania

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2011
    Location:
    Aridzona
    #255
    No need for this level of drama. You are in favor of Apple's SSD pricing, the pricing of which I and others find exorbitant. I get it. Go buy one.



    Mike
     
  6. MacSince1985 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2009
    #256
    Heat management. Unless it is proven that those higher end Minis' processors can sustain a heavy load for long period of time without throttling down, like the iMac Pro, I won't recommend them.
     
  7. imageWIS macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2009
    Location:
    NYC
    #257
    Heat management has always been Apple's achilles heel. They want the machines to run ultra silent, so they forgo useable computing power for design... just look at the Mac Pro Tower vs the Trashintosh.
     
  8. imola.zhp macrumors 6502a

    imola.zhp

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2010
    Location:
    Mud Island (Memphis), TN
    #258
    Re-Watch the presentation, the graphics used in describing the location and shape of the hard drive indicate the hard drive is not user upgradable. But yes, for someone not aware of what a traditional hard drive looks like for the Mac Mini (2.5" SATA) it might be confusing.
     
  9. d0nK macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2011
    Location:
    UK
    #259
    I've been saying that Apple should use 512GB as STANDARD for the last three years. It's pathetic that they use 256GB. 128GB is plain outrageous. I am seriously looking at PC laptops atm. I might wait to see what they release as their next mbp but I'm expecting yet more compromises and stupid design decisions. Would be nice to think that they will start using a decent keyboard again and possibly put in a couple of USB 3.1 ports and an HDMI... and make it thicker for cooling purposes. That would sell like hot-cakes and would make plenty of sense, but I foresee 2019 as being the craziest of years tbh.
     
  10. dantroline macrumors regular

    dantroline

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2016
    #260
    I have three previous Mac Minis, two which I got for free as they were 'too slow'. They are still great for a way to run MacOS for basic office computing, or for a basic multimedia center (thankfully Mojave runs fine on them so that means updates for the remaining life of the product... after that it's Linux for them if they survive that long). The new models are expensive for what they provide (soldered tiny drives that are already obsolete for size) and the fashion appeal of the case is meaningless when the thing just sits tucked behind a huge screen or shoved in the top drawer of the desk. If money were no object I'd buy one, but since it is I am going to go off-label, plus I'm back to being multi-platform with the hardware so flexibility (Apple/MS/Linux) is important now. What is good is the Mac Mini lives on and hasn't been dumped. This means that the Intel hardware ecosystem will be supported by Apple for a few more years (maybe that's a good thing I am not sure) and it also means Apple are giving a nod to supporting the desktop OS for a while longer - a very important thing because having a choice in this area is driving innovation.
     
  11. imageWIS macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2009
    Location:
    NYC
    #261
    You forgot MagSafe. I'm OK with them not having an HDMI port, since you can get USB-C to HDMI cables / adapters. I was honestly ok with having 4 Thunderbolt 3 ports, but not if it killed MagSafe. And yes, the cooling is getting worse and worse. Ive and his insane want for thinness at all costs have to go.
    --- Post Merged, Nov 13, 2018 ---
    Computers (PCs) will never die, I don't understand how people don't understand that. I mean just look at an iPad with a keyboard: it looks like a Laptop. You just CAN'T do pro work on a tablet, even if it's massive, which is why the Surface Studio isn't selling well (also crap specs, Max 4GB GPU? Really? in 2018?).
     
  12. Sabelonada macrumors regular

    Sabelonada

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2018
    #262
    I enjoy the irony of pushing the iPad as a laptop replacement when Steve Jobs was against touchscreen laptops. Since there is no other way to interact with an iPad, one is forced to use a solution derided by Steve Jobs himself. Not that Steve Jobs was all knowing, but the irony...
     
  13. manu chao macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2003
    #263
    No, I’m simply in favour of not intentionally misleading people, which you don’t seem to have any problems with.
     
  14. Ifti macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2010
    Location:
    UK
    #264
    Im more concerned about the noise levels in comparison to the Blackmagic GPU?
     
  15. Tinmania macrumors 68040

    Tinmania

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2011
    Location:
    Aridzona
    #265
    I would agree with you but then we'd both be wrong.


    Mike
     
  16. vertical smile macrumors 68030

    vertical smile

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2014
    #266
    I wonder why Apple decided to do non-soldered RAM, a reversal from the previous Mac Mini, while choosing to solder the storage.

    On this thread, there have been many reasons stating the benefits (most from Apple’s POV) to solder the storage, many of them are valid. But, why not solder the RAM too?

    An argument could be made that soldering RAM makes even more sense than soldering storage, due to the reliability of RAM when compared to storage.

    Here are some reasons I suspect that the RAM was not soldered, but the storage was:

    1. Easier for the user to swallow – maybe Apple felt if everything was soldered on a desktop there would have been a big backlash from the core Apple community, similar to the complaints of the 2017 MBP at the horrible "hello again" event.

    2. Price trends versus profit margin - RAM prices have been going up, and Apple has not been getting as much as a gain from the Apple Tax from RAM upgrades as they once had. Apple can only make the RAM BTO prices so high.

    Storage prices continue to plummet giving users incentive (if they had the option) to buy cheaper BTO storage and upgrade later once prices fall further. Since the Storage is soldered, then that leaves the user little choice but to purchase higher sized/priced storage at the time of purchase than they otherwise would not have if it was not soldered. As storage prices continue to plummet, I doubt Apple will make the BTO prices cheaper, so this would be even more profit for them.

    3. A combination of the two above.


    Anyone else have any other thoughts why Apple chose to solder one but not both?
     
  17. Justanotherfanboy macrumors regular

    Justanotherfanboy

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2018
    #267
    I’m not sure compared to Blackmagic, but the MacWorld review said that when the Razer Core X ramped up the fans to max, during intensive tasks- it remained quieter than if the MacBook Pro had ramped up its fans instead.

    Hope that helps! =)
     
  18. Ifti macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2010
    Location:
    UK
    #268
    Ah that's actually quite respectable in that case!
    Thanks dude ;)
     
  19. ValueArb macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2010
    #269
    This SSD criticism is crazy. You can add a cheap third party SSD to the Mini any time you want with Thunderbolt. No need to pay up for Apples.

    And those complaining about Apple's pricing for the internal SSD's actually mean they want the Mini to use much slower, cheaper industry standard SSD controllers and much slower, cheaper SSDs. The Mini internal SSD's are soldered in because they are custom SSDs using a super fast proprietary controller that makes them among the fastest SSDs in real world use that you can get anywhere. They are so smoking fast, that the benchmarks for the 1TB has read/write speeds slightly faster than the iMac Pro's SSDs!

    Again, Apple has given customers a wonderful choice here. If you need big cheap storage, get the 128Gb internal and use it as a cache given it's blistering read speeds, and connect a huge cheap slow third party SSD over thunderbolt.

    If you need high performance disk I/O, get the 1TB, which has the fastest read AND write speeds around.

    If Apple wanted to target the $500 price point they would have used the same commodity industry standard controllers & SSDs used in commodity NUCs and you'd be lucky to get 500 MB/sec, and the CPU performance would be hobbled by a slow cheap memory controller. And then the same people would complain that while Apple's SSD pricing is reasonable, the performance sucks. They'll never be happy until Apple releases the magic fairy $500 Mac that's both faster and cheaper than every other PC ever made.
     
  20. Dimwhit macrumors 68000

    Dimwhit

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2007
    #270
    I was so looking forward to the new mac mini. I have the 2011 model. It's still a good machine, but I wanted to upgrade. But I want at least a 1TB hard drive. The SSD not being replaceable is the deal killer for me. I can buy a 1TB SSD for about $120-130. Apple wants $600. It's insulting.

    So I'll keep using my 2011 Mac Mini until it won't run anymore. Then I'm not sure what I'll do.
     
  21. Sabelonada macrumors regular

    Sabelonada

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2018
    #271
    The $120-$130 1TB SSD is a SATA SSD and is much slower than the SSD in the new Mac mini. It's not really comparable.

    The upgrade price is steep and in line with what Apple charges across the line up.
     
  22. harriska2 macrumors 6502a

    harriska2

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2011
    #272
    It was a hard lump to swallow but I'm glad I did. I very much realize I spent $200-$500 more for this with the 1tb SSD but it works for what I need and I won't have to worry about filling the drive and working around it, like I did with my 256 SSD on my PC - because iTunes insisted on backing up the phones and iPads on the boot drive only. Geesh. Had to buy iMazing to get around it as all the hacks didn't work.
     
  23. Macalope macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2015
    #273
    I'm in the exact same situation. Sucks. I really don't care about having the latest gee-whiz SSD. I want an affordable option, like iMac users get with a 5400 rpm drive. But this isn't a machine for people without deep pockets anymore.

    I've discovered I can configure an Intel NUC with the latest gen mobile i5, 1 TB Samsung 860 SSD (m.2), 16 GB RAM and a copy of Windows for about $700, which is still more than I wanted to pay, but it is a far cry from the $1500 or whatever it was that I'd have to pay for a Mini with an i5, 16 GB RAM, and 1 TB SSD. I realize the desktop i5 in the Mini is better but that's really not important to me; in benchmarks I've seen, the NUC is often neck-and-neck with or superior to the Mini in real world performance anyway, thanks to the Mini's throttling. Haven't pulled the trigger on the system yet, but it's looking likely. Super reluctant not to have a Mac in my life, though. There is apparently a super-enthusiastic NUC Hackintosh community out there, if I find I'm really missing a Mac that much, I suppose. It's sad, though.
     
  24. harriska2 macrumors 6502a

    harriska2

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2011
    #274
    I have the i5/1TB with only 8gb ram. I think it cost $1500 with .edu discount. I also have an i7/32gb/512mb NUC that runs windows. And that is the problem. The NUC is running Blue Iris security system and I don't think I'd like it as a desktop because it runs Windows. It can't run Windows 10 because of the forced updates, they let you delay it but if you don't log in, you won't know it rebooted and the security software doesn't like to auto start. Yep, I paid $950 for the NUC a couple years ago but I really prefer the Mac due to software: the mail/contacts/calendar works much better for our family and myself than Outlook. I have Final Cut Pro for $200 and other video importing tools like eyeTV that I don't have on a PC. And I absolutely need FileMaker Pro, which really sucks on a PC. So the difference is $600 and if I have the mini for 5 years, the difference is $120 per year more, which for me is more than worth it to get off Windows and have airdrop and cross device compatibility with our iPhones and iPads.
     
  25. vertical smile macrumors 68030

    vertical smile

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2014
    #275
    Yea, this really sucks.

    It is $800 for the base model, although I know a lot of people are just gonna get the higher tier.

    It may not be comparable in speed, but I am sure the 1TB upgrade cost a fraction of what Apple is charging for it.
     

Share This Page