About To Purchase a 2012 Mac Mini. What is most important Upgrades right away?

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by FunkTechNician, Sep 11, 2013.

  1. FunkTechNician macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2009
    #1
    Im about to purchase a late 2012 Macmini from apple.com or elsewhere if better deal.

    I will be getting the 2.3 i7
    what is best to get right away money is some what limited at the moment.

    Should i upgrade to 2.6 or keep it at 2.3?
    If i keep it at 2.3 should i go with a fusion 1tb or keep the 1tb5400 and purchase a ssd drive elsewhere? I need at least 500gb so the 256 is just way to small. I was thinking about the Crucial M500 480GB from newegg.

    Ram i want to upgrade but not from apple.com way to expensive.

    I would like to get everything at 0 interest which is why i like apple.com

    i will be doing a little bit of video editing and a lot of raw photo editing.
     
  2. Miat macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2012
    #2
    Starting with the highest priority, I would go:

    1. Max the RAM out (16GB).

    2. SSD + keep the 1TB HD.

    I agree that 256GB is too small for the main drive, 512GB is the minimum size for a useable main drive, for me anyway, otherwise just way too much juggling files back and forth off the big storage hard drives. I am saving my pennies for a 512GB SSD for my new Mini, (quad i7, 2.3GHz, 16GB of non-Apple RAM).

    3. Bump CPU to 2.6GHz.

    To be honest I doubt you will notice much difference from the extra 0.3 GHz. Probably save about 10% off the time taken by processor intensive tasks, like video processing. Only get it if you have spare cash after doing the other two upgrades, and if you really could use that extra bit of grunt.
     
  3. COrocket macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2012
    #3
    I got the 2.3 because it seemed like the most bang for the buck. Doubling the processor and HDD was worth it for $200 but I didn't want to spend another $100 to get about 10% improvement on top of that. I think the SSD is the best upgrade to do right away. My mini runs fine with 4GB of RAM but the SSD improvement is definitely noticible.
     
  4. FunkTechNician thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2009
    #4
    So stay with 2.3 and just get ssd? Which ssd is recommended? If I get one off another site if I get issues on my computer do I have to put the original back in everytime before taking it to the genius bar?
     
  5. Mr. Retrofire macrumors 601

    Mr. Retrofire

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2010
    Location:
    www.emiliana.cl/en
    #5
    Yes.

    http://www.cpubenchmark.net/cpu.php?cpu=Intel+Core+i7-3615QM+@+2.30GHz

    vs.

    http://www.cpubenchmark.net/cpu.php?cpu=Intel+Core+i7-3720QM+@+2.60GHz

    I recommend the Samsung 840 Evo (+ Trim Enabler)

    Yeah, that's better.
     
  6. Miat, Sep 11, 2013
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2013

    Miat macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2012
    #6
    I would get at least 8GB RAM these days if I was doing any more than just basic browsing, email, playing music and vids, etc. Adding RAM is a cheap & easy way to substantially boost performance in a low RAM machine.

    Don't forget that in machines with integrated graphics, like the 2012 Mini, there is no separate dedicated video RAM, instead a chunk of regular RAM is used by the graphics processor, so 4GB is more like 3.5GB. Adding extra RAM not only gives the overall system more to work with, it also increases the amount of RAM available for the graphics work (from 512 to 768MB).

    Can't directly recommend it as I have not tried it yet, but I am looking at getting the Samsung 840 Pro. Not the cheapest, but this is one part where I am prepared to fork out a bit extra for better quality (both speed and reliability).
     
  7. Miat, Sep 11, 2013
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2013

    Miat macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2012
    #7
    For what it is worth, according to the 64 bit Geekbench tests the 2.3 scores 11713, and the 2.6 scores 12776, a bit under a 10% increase.

    A significant difference, but not a big one.

    RAM and SSD will be where you get the most bang for your buck.
     
  8. opinio macrumors 65816

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    Mar 23, 2013
    #8
  9. FunkTechNician thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2009
    #10
    im leaning towards just getting the 2.6 with the 256ssd that it comes with and later on adding the double drive with a higher space and faster ssd later on.

    where is the best place to buy the 16gb of ram for the price?
     
  10. blanka macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2012
    #11
    Dont buy any SSD stuff from Apple (not Fusion, not SSD).
    Add 16Gb right away.
    Slide in an SSD yourself (if you pick a 7mm drive, you don't need to take the mini apart). Only remove the Wifi antenna, mount the new cable you got on Ebay, attach it to the drive and slide it in (no screws needed).
     
  11. Sue De Nimes macrumors 6502a

    Sue De Nimes

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2012
    #12
    Just don't pay Apple for the extra RAM
    :)
     
  12. Mr. Retrofire macrumors 601

    Mr. Retrofire

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    Location:
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    #13
    The 2.6 is ≈ 15 % faster @ the moment (the benchmark results are average results) compared to the 2.3. Not much, for daily applications. Probably useful, if you encode 720p & 1080p H.264 24/7.
     
  13. dmunz macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2010
    #14
    I'm looking at buting a mini and this is interesting. Is it rreally that simple?

    What drive and cable would you recomend?

    TIA
    DLM
     
  14. corvus32 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2009
    Location:
    USA
    #15
    I wouldn't bother with the 2.6. In fact, I wouldn't even recommend spending the extra $200 on the 2.3 over the i5. How often do you encode full length movies? Put that money towards something else.
     
  15. opinio macrumors 65816

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    Mar 23, 2013
    #16
    I run a 2012 2.6GHz with 16 GB of Corsair Vengeance RAM 1600MHz. Excellent stuff.
     
  16. MJL, Sep 13, 2013
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2013

    MJL macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2011
    #17
    SSD and memory. Base Mac mini is sufficient. Got two Mac mini's and each has two SSD's, one SSD dedicated to windows, the other to OS X. Storage external, USB 3.0 or Thunderbolt.
     
  17. EpicBlob macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 29, 2012
    Location:
    Mid-West
    #18
    I think a Quad Core model will really give you more out of it. I'd say get the $800 2.3ghz model and upgrade everything else yourself. You'll save hundreds and it's easy to do.
     
  18. MJL macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2011
    #19
    Not when I am running it 24/5 and have an average CPU load of 8% - 10% (depending on time of the day).
     
  19. EpicBlob macrumors member

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    Feb 29, 2012
    Location:
    Mid-West
    #20
    But in 4-5 years, it'll really make you happy you spent the extra money. I bought a 24inch iMac in 2008 with a loaded out cpu/gpu and while it definitely shows it's age, it is still a very usable system.
     
  20. Miat macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2012
    #21
    Definitely get 3rd party RAM for the upgrade. Mine cost less than half what Apple charges for the same amount (16GB).
     
  21. Fishrrman macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #22
    The best "immediate" upgrade?

    You want to put something into the Mini that cannot be added later on.

    My suggestion: Get the 2.6ghz i7 (rather than the 2.3ghz).

    That is the ONLY thing that cannot be upgraded later.

    My opinion only (I realize others' will be different).

    RAM, SSD? Buy those yourself. No rush.
     

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