Anyone else annoyed with minimal HDD space?

laudern

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Original poster
Jan 5, 2011
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I'm looking for a new macbook/air/pro and I honestly can't choose any of them. The storage capacity in all laptop models is so pathetically small or over priced it is unreal!!!

My current 2009 Macbook has 2.5Tb in storage and I just can't bring myself to having to be limited to using a portable HDD to store my video libraries.

I'm guessing the reason for this artificial lowering of storage is to force you to use the icloud storage subscription. It s just so infuriating!
 

Superspeed500

macrumors regular
Jul 25, 2013
192
42
I'm looking for a new macbook/air/pro and I honestly can't choose any of them. The storage capacity in all laptop models is so pathetically small or over priced it is unreal!!!

My current 2009 Macbook has 2.5Tb in storage and I just can't bring myself to having to be limited to using a portable HDD to store my video libraries.

I'm guessing the reason for this artificial lowering of storage is to force you to use the icloud storage subscription. It s just so infuriating!
Agreed. The biggest problem IMO is that the disks in the new portable macs are impossible to upgrade. It would be so much easier if there was a simple way to swap drives and if there was a way to mount a second drive (HDD) in some of the models. SSDs are way to pricey for storing lots of files.
 
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Howard2k

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Mar 10, 2016
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I use a NAS. 4TB NAS systems can be built/bought cheaply enough. You need a decent network obviously, and even then it’s slower than external HDD, but space becomes a total non-issue. For me anyway.
 
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mroy16

macrumors regular
May 28, 2017
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The pricing is an artifact of Apple refusing to use SATA SSDs. NVMe storage is much more expensive, though much faster. A lot of non-Apple laptops will use a smaller NVMe drive for the OS and have a 2.5" SATA HDD or SSD for mass storage. It would be great if Apple offered this option, but they instead choose to make their laptops ever smaller instead.
 
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trifid

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May 10, 2011
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The pricing is an artifact of Apple refusing to use SATA SSDs. NVMe storage is much more expensive, though much faster. A lot of non-Apple laptops will use a smaller NVMe drive for the OS and have a 2.5" SATA HDD or SSD for mass storage. It would be great if Apple offered this option, but they instead choose to make their laptops ever smaller instead.
Very true and also remember what they did with Mac Mini 2018. They could have easily included a SATA or even NVMe slot for expandability, since it's a desktop they could afford a bit more space. Instead, if you want 1 or 2TB you literally have to spend a fortune. It's just criminal and out of touch.
 
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Aston441

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Sep 16, 2014
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I'm looking for a new macbook/air/pro and I honestly can't choose any of them. The storage capacity in all laptop models is so pathetically small or over priced it is unreal!!!

My current 2009 Macbook has 2.5Tb in storage and I just can't bring myself to having to be limited to using a portable HDD to store my video libraries.

I'm guessing the reason for this artificial lowering of storage is to force you to use the icloud storage subscription. It s just so infuriating!

This issue has been keeping me from buying a new machine for 8 years. I refuse let Apple rape my wallet for a normal amount of storage in this day and age, which is at least 1TB. I have better things to do with my money, like invest it.

Apple is really blowing it completely. Idiots.
 
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trifid

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This issue has been keeping me from buying a new machine for 8 years. I refuse let Apple rape my wallet for a normal amount of storage in this day and age, which is at least 1TB. I have better things to do with my money, like invest it.

Apple is really blowing it completely. Idiots.
I think the last Macs with HDDs to ship with at least 120gb were back in 2006-2007, after that it was common for Macs to have at least 250gb or 320gb by default. Somehow with SSDs Apple wants us to think 128gb is normal again after 10+ years which is mind blowing. And no I don't want iCloud, I need real local storage and I don't want to pay a fortune for it.

Most mind-blowing is the Mac Mini 2018, soldered 128gb for a desktop with no internal slots/expansion and Apple asking for $1600 for 2TB deserves life time prison.
 
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Aston441

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Sep 16, 2014
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I think the last Macs with HDDs to ship with at least 120gb were back in 2006-2007, after that it was common for Macs to have at least 250gb or 320gb by default. Somehow with SSDs Apple wants us to think 128gb is normal again after 10+ years which is mind blowing. And no I don't want iCloud, I need real local storage and I don't want to pay a fortune for it.

Most mind-blowing is the Mac Mini 2018, soldered 128gb for a desktop with no internal slots/expansion and Apple asking for $1600 for 2TB deserves life time prison.
I think the last Macs with HDDs to ship with at least 120gb were back in 2006-2007, after that it was common for Macs to have at least 250gb or 320gb by default. Somehow with SSDs Apple wants us to think 128gb is normal again after 10+ years which is mind blowing. And no I don't want iCloud, I need real local storage and I don't want to pay a fortune for it.

Most mind-blowing is the Mac Mini 2018, soldered 128gb for a desktop with no internal slots/expansion and Apple asking for $1600 for 2TB deserves life time prison.
Exactly this.

Not to mention OS X was leaner and meaner in those days, so spinning storage worked perfectly well.
 
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Neodym

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Jul 5, 2002
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Most mind-blowing is the Mac Mini 2018, soldered 128gb for a desktop with no internal slots/expansion and Apple asking for $1600 for 2TB deserves life time prison.
Apple is all about wireless & external these days. The mini is about a desktop environment, so it is no problem to add external drives in that scenario. The internal drive is just to host macOS and even 128GB - while comparatively small in absolute numbers these days - is more than sufficient for that.

Storage is intended to be added via one of the FOUR Thunderbolt ports the mini offers (or one of the still TWO USB 3 slots, if you want to save money). You are even free to choose a brand of your favour, with the drive sized according to your needs.

I really don’t understand the complaints. If you feel the urge to burn money by buying the high-capacity internal drive, go ahead, but don’t complain. All others have more inexpensive roads offered by Apple.

The mini has its problems, but storage cost aint one of it.
[doublepost=1547507050][/doublepost]
Not to mention OS X was leaner and meaner in those days, so spinning storage worked perfectly well.
OSx was even leaner & meaner, so floppy disks worked perfectly well.
 
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trifid

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May 10, 2011
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I really don’t understand the complaints. If you feel the urge to burn money by buying the high-capacity internal drive, go ahead, but don’t complain. All others have more inexpensive roads offered by Apple.
I'm a big proponent of going external for the user folder but it's not a mainstream idea. There are some important considerations and it's not straight forward nor elegant for the mainstream mac mini user. I've actually tried pushing this idea of having 128gb for OS, and external for user folder and I've seen a lot of comments from people here that don't like some drive hanging off the mac mini with their user folder.

As much as I'd like to push the idea of the external drive for the user folder, it feels like a workaround/hack, it diminishes the elegance and simplicity, it adds some security considerations. It's just not ideal.

I also ran into an issue with this VPN software "ExpressVPN" for some reason it won't work off my user from an external USB, but it will work if I use the user on my internal SSD. I tried creating new users both on external and internal drives, same results. So this is one example of an external user folder having unexpected results vs internal.

What if Apple had included an additional internal NVMe or SATA slot? Previous Mac Minis did have space for 2 drives. That would have been great, but not as profitable for Apple as soldering storage and then charging an arm and a leg to upgrade it. This is the root of the complaint, the external path is not elegant and the internal path is for rich people, not for the rest of us™.
 
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Neodym

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As much as I'd like to push the idea of the external drive for the user folder, it feels like a workaround/hack, it diminishes the elegance and simplicity, it adds some security considerations. It's just not ideal.
If you have to be worried about security in this context: People who might snatch an external drive, might as well snatch the whole mini.

I also ran into an issue with this VPN software "ExpressVPN" for some reason it won't work off my user from an external USB, but it will work if I use the user on my internal SSD. I tried creating new users both on external and internal drives, same results. So this is one example of an external user folder having unexpected results vs internal.
Did you try an external Thunderbolt drive? The different way of implementation vs. USB bears a good chance it would work on a TB drive.
Apart from that I don't know whether the special kind of software and related security considerations lead to the problems you describe - or whether the software is simply poorly implemented.

Besides - even with 128GB, there is still room for a couple of programs after an OSX installation, if required. It's just the bigger save data that has to go elsewhere.

What if Apple had included an additional internal NVMe or SATA slot? Previous Mac Minis did have space for 2 drives. That would have been great, but not as profitable for Apple as soldering storage and then charging an arm and a leg to upgrade it. This is the root of the complaint, the external path is not elegant and the internal path is for rich people, not for the rest of us™.
Take a look at the teardown of the 2018 mini and tell me where you would find the room to have an internal NVMe slot (leave a lone a 2.5" bay)!

Apple has decided to go for a powerful desktop-class CPU in the 2018 mini and that requires a powerful cooling solution, which takes much more space than the one for the mobile-class CPU's in former generations. They also decided to offer upgradeable Ram slots (which had been demanded by many users), which take quite some place as well.

So for me the lack of an internal drive slot is not the bad, bad Apple trying to best its customers, but instead a technical necessity resulting from the decision to position the new mini in the semi-professional sector, with higher-performing hardware requiring more space in the mini's casing.

You could argue that Apple should have designed a new housing then, instead of re-using the old molding tools, but that would have taken more time & resources, thus increasing the already high price of the 2018 mini even more.

Apple is currently on a way to increase product prices all across the board to satisfy investors. This sometimes involves a re-positioning of a product like the mini, changing the target group and making it more costly for the interested private user.

A top manager of Porsche was once asked in an interview about a more affordable entry model. His answer was around the lines of "a used Porsche is our affordable entry model". I feel that Apple is heading a similar way.
 
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Howard2k

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Mar 10, 2016
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There are lots of options. I use a NAS, so 256 is very workable. I’d probably go 512 for my next one, but not 100%.

Apple’s rates are absurd. I don’t know why people pay for 1TB or 2TB options.
 
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_Kiki_

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Aug 13, 2017
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depended of needs, if you need workspace to mission critical job, there is no place for cuts, so you need big internal SSD, other stuff like photos, movies, music you can have on external drives

There are lots of options. I use a NAS, so 256 is very workable. I’d probably go 512 for my next one, but not 100%.

Apple’s rates are absurd. I don’t know why people pay for 1TB or 2TB options.
I use a NAS. 4TB NAS systems can be built/bought cheaply enough. You need a decent network obviously, and even then it’s slower than external HDD, but space becomes a total non-issue. For me anyway.
wow, you have a NAS, what a upgrade dude, you are amazing, but you don't have to say about this 2 times in one topic, it's look silly
 
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Neodym

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Jul 5, 2002
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depended of needs, if you need workspace to mission critical job, there is no place for cuts, so you need big internal SSD, other stuff like photos, movies, music you can have on external drives
If you really _need_ that for a mission critical job, chances are you're doing it professionally and then the money should be recouped by the project.

For private projects you shouldn't need 1 or 2 TB of internal storage (unless for enthusiasts - but then that's the price they have to pay).
 
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pika2000

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Jun 22, 2007
5,587
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I'm looking for a new macbook/air/pro and I honestly can't choose any of them. The storage capacity in all laptop models is so pathetically small or over priced it is unreal!!!

My current 2009 Macbook has 2.5Tb in storage and I just can't bring myself to having to be limited to using a portable HDD to store my video libraries.

I'm guessing the reason for this artificial lowering of storage is to force you to use the icloud storage subscription. It s just so infuriating!
I'll take SSD anytime over spinning platter regardless of storage size.
And no, Apple is not forcing you to use iCloud.

I have experienced so many hard-drive failures that I no longer trust them on anything that is remotely mobile. I'm glad Apple went full SSD with their laptops.
 
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radiologyman

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Jul 23, 2011
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I use a NAS. 4TB NAS systems can be built/bought cheaply enough. You need a decent network obviously, and even then it’s slower than external HDD, but space becomes a total non-issue. For me anyway.
This. I don't have dedicated NAS hardware, just hard drives connected to media player and desktop PC. Have about 10 TB storage at any time available to all devices in the household, saves a lot of money and actually helps by keeping single media library. I do keep offline copy of the pictures, documents, etc.
 
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