Advice on processor speed

Discussion in 'iMac' started by dellavoce, Jan 26, 2010.

  1. dellavoce macrumors regular

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    Oct 14, 2007
    #1
    So, as I mentioned in an earlier thread, I have decided on the Mac mini which I'll be ordering on Friday. Because I intend to keep this computer for the next 3 years at least, I want to make sure that I get the most bang for my buck. To that end, I plan on getting 4 GB of ram, but I'm unsure if I should spend 135 dollars for a 2.53 or stick with the 2.26 processor. Mostly, I use the computer for web browsing and word processing. I download a lot of music and videos and I watch videos and DVDs from the computer. I occasionally burn a DVD or do some minor video editing (very little). Thoughts?
     
  2. balamw Moderator

    balamw

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    #2
    It sounds to me that you should really be considering the stock 2.53 GHz model. The $200 premium gets you the 4 GB of RAM, the faster processor and 2X the drive space.

    Unless of course you were planning on doing the RAM and HDD upgrades yourself...

    B
     
  3. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

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    #3
    I would get the 2.53GHz because 4GB of DDR3 will cost you around 70$ plus you have to do the surgery as well. You get a bigger HD too
     
  4. dellavoce thread starter macrumors regular

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    #4
    I was thinking it would be a little less expensive to go with the 2.26 processor and upgrade the RAM to 4 GB. True the 2.53 model has the larger hard drive but I'll be using my 1 TB external for most of my storge anyway. I was just concerned that I might regret a lack of processing power. It just seems like $135 is a lot for .27 GHz
     
  5. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

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    #5
    It is but you also get twice as much memory and storage. Of course if you want to save some money, go for the low-end model.
     
  6. mabaker macrumors 65816

    mabaker

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    Jan 19, 2008
    #6
    I was in an identical situation, dellavoce, back in 2009. :)

    I had worked with a Mac Mini 2.0 (early 2009), Mac Mini (Late 2009) 2.26 and a Mac Mini (Late 2009) 2.53.

    I have gone for the 2.53 model in the end but certainly not cuzz of the CPU clock. What did entangle me was the bigger HDD size and 4 GB of RAM which suits my needs perfectly.

    Let me tell you that there is absolutely no difference in a day to day Mac experience whether you're running a 2.26 processor or 2.53 or 2.66. Absolutely NONE!

    Mail will open in one bounce on a 2.26 processor, so will Safari, so if you're fine with the 2GB of RAM, save yourself the bucks and be happy with a very fast 2.26 GHz Mac Mini!

    Also be reminded that these little beasts match and even beat the sheer processor power you could find in a Powermac few years back!

    Don't think CPU clock, just buy and enjoy it.
     
  7. dh2005 macrumors 6502a

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    Jan 25, 2010
    #7
    Can I ask a CPU clock question of my own here, please?

    I'm wondering whether to customize the iMac I plan to buy up to the 3.33GHz Duo from the standard 3.06GHz chip. Video performance is my biggest interest - would that money be better spent on the CPU, or more RAM?

    Thanks.
     
  8. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

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    #8
    Sure. What you mean by "video performance"? 3.33GHz is faster in rendering and importing/exporting, but for watching videos (even 1080p) it makes no difference wether it is 3.06GHz or 3.33GHz.
     
  9. dh2005 macrumors 6502a

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    Jan 25, 2010
    #9
    Thanks for the swift reply.

    I'm thinking about games, mostly. But I also remux HD video (of, I assure you, legal origins...), which takes forever on my current netbook, so that would be a pressing concern also.
     
  10. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

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    #10
    If your wallet allows, go for the quad core model because it's over twice as fast in converting (I think you meant converting?) and it also gives a nice boost in games. If it doesn't, settle for the 3.33GHz
     
  11. dh2005 macrumors 6502a

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    Jan 25, 2010
    #11
    Remuxing, mate. Pulling the streams apart then putting them back together. Although having a computer that can convert wouldn't do me any harm, either.

    Are you saying that a 2.66Ghz quad-core would be better-suited to my needs than a 3.33Ghz dual-core?


    Thanks again. This is all very useful.
     
  12. danistyping macrumors regular

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    #12
    The 2.66 quad core is better for EVERYONE. Do it!
     
  13. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

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    #13
    Oh, I haven't heard that before so... :eek:

    Anyway, if you're using an application that supports quad core (e.g. Handbrake), it'll be a lot faster than with 3.33GHz dual core. Quad core has Turbo Boost too so when you are using an app that can't utilize all four cores, it can shut down other cores and then one or two core(s) can temporarily overclock so that you get better performance.

    But yea, in my opinion quad core would suit better for your needs
     
  14. dh2005 macrumors 6502a

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    #14
    Hm. This has given me even more to think about...!

    Thank you, everyone.
     
  15. dellavoce thread starter macrumors regular

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    Oct 14, 2007
    #15
    So you're saying that for what I generally use the computer for, watching video included, 2.26 is plenty? I could put the $100 or so toward the apple keyboard and magic mouse
     
  16. dh2005 macrumors 6502a

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    #16
    (sorry, dude... didn't mean to jack your thread)
     
  17. balamw Moderator

    balamw

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    #17
    It's plenty now, but you are looking at the machine lasting you 3 years. What will you be doing with it then?

    If you really want to save money, and are willing to install the RAM yourself, keep checking the refurb section of the Apple store. Cheap $429-$549 minis do show up, but they are snapped up almost instantly.

    B
     
  18. dellavoce thread starter macrumors regular

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  19. MacHamster68 macrumors 68040

    MacHamster68

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    Sep 17, 2009
    #19
    for what you are doing and if you still do about the same in 3 years time then the 2.26 is fast enough ,the difference to the 2.53 is not mindblowing
    spend the money you safe on a external 2 tb harddrive (plenty of room for your films )and on some memory ,you can upgrade the ram over time , the stock ram is sufficient for what you do on the mini for now

    you could go for the for the 2.66 to be on the safe side in terms of speed ,but the difference is not huge ,
    but the 2.66 brings you in terms of price very close to a refurbished iMac 21.5 base with 3.06 ghz and 4 gb ram ( you get even a display in the imac and the keyboard and the mouse and isight camera ) refurbished macs have same warranty's as new ones
     

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