Advice moving from rMBP to Mac Mini

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by r_some8, Dec 14, 2015.

  1. r_some8 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2015
    #1
    Hi,

    Just looking for advice hopefully from others that have some experience. I'll try to keep it simple.

    I'm a photographer that purchased a refurbished 2104 13.3" rMBP 5 months ago from Apple. It was a nice deal. Though I'm realizing I'm not happy with this setup anymore, due to the glossy screen, the limits of the 13" size, fixed 8GB RAM, and only a 128GB SSD. I could change out the SSD but I don't want to void Applecare.

    I've been considering getting a used Mac Mini, late 2012 model. I would install 16GB RAM and a 500GB SSD. And purchase a 25" matte screen monitor. I'll probably opt for the i5 model based on cost.

    My question is will I notice a big difference in performance if I move to the Mac Mini? I'll be running Photoshop for post-processing images, nothing too intensive.

    I know my other option is to just get the external monitor and use it with the rMBP, but I'd still be limited with the 8GB RAM and 128GB SSD. Also, I don't have a need for portability anymore.

    Any advice or related experience would be appreciated-
     
  2. Fishrrman macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #2
    As nice as the late-2012 Mini was (I have one), isn't it getting a little late to be considering one now?

    I recommend instead a 2014 Mini, "top-level" model, with a 16gb RAM upgrade.

    It will come with a 1tb fusion drive inside (standard equipment) which is actually TWO drives:
    - 128gb SSD
    and
    - 1tb HDD

    You can run it "as fusion", or you could even "split apart" the fused drives into 2 standalone drives and use it that way instead.

    And... the 2014 top-level Minis have considerably better graphics than the late-2012.
     
  3. r_some8 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2015
    #3

    Thanks for your reply, but that would be above my budget. That's why I was looking at the 2012. Plenty of them on eBay at a reasonable price, and I can upgrade them myself.
     
  4. borgusio, Dec 14, 2015
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2015

    borgusio macrumors regular

    borgusio

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2011
    #4
    My suggestion would be to get a 2011 i7 2,7 GhZ with dedicated AMD graphics. Basically same power as the top 2014.
    They are pretty rare, but if you can find one, go for it!

    I own it since four years and at present configured with 16 GB RAM, 750 GB Fusion Drive. I also have a G-DRIVE in raid 0 attached via thunderbolt for Final Cut Pro X and a WD 4 TB via USB for Time machine.
    Amazing machine.

    P.S. it drives even 4K monitors (just 30Hz)
     
  5. r_some8 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2015
  6. jpietrzak8 macrumors 6502a

    jpietrzak8

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2010
    Location:
    Dayton, Ohio
    #6
    I'm not borgusio, but yes, that is indeed the 2011 model with the Radeon graphics card. :)

    On the other hand, I don't think Intel integrated GPUs are all that bad for non-gaming purposes. I don't know exactly what you're planning on running, but I personally think the advantage in image-processing power of the quad-core i7s would make them more desirable...
     
  7. treekram macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2015
    Location:
    Honolulu HI
    #7
    Just be aware the 2011 Mac has USB 2, not USB 3. I put off buying a Mini in 2012 waiting for a Mini that had USB 3 (and it came!). If you use USB flash drives and/or external HDD/SDD, you really need to consider this. There are Thunderbolt to USB 3 adapters (not cheap, around $70-$80) but then you either need to forego Thunderbolt/DisplayPort monitors or get a Thunderbolt hub, which cost even more.
     
  8. borgusio macrumors regular

    borgusio

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2011
    #8
    You are right. In my setup USB3 is absolutely not necessary, but everyone has other needs, of course. I find also the Firewire port very useful in the MacMini 2011 as I still access some older cameras/hard disks, but probably more modern users do not need it, as well
     

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