Broadwell mini?

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by Ice Dragon, Mar 11, 2015.

  1. Ice Dragon macrumors 6502a

    Ice Dragon

    Jun 16, 2009
    With the update to the 13" rMBP on Monday, how likely is a Broadwell Mac mini do you think? My 2011 Mac mini is alive and well but I want the next graphics boost to be pretty big. Wondering if I can hold off until it is released and get Iris 6100 which I think would be acceptable over Intel HD 3000.

  2. yjchua95 macrumors 604

    Apr 23, 2011
    GVA, KUL, MEL (current), ZQN
  3. redheeler macrumors 604


    Oct 17, 2014
    Can't say for sure, but I'd expect to wait until Skylake at least for new Mac minis based on the frequency of recent updates. They were updated only last October.

    That's quite a thread you've linked there... but it would be nice to know how that helps answer the OP's question.
  4. anthorumor macrumors 6502a

    Jun 16, 2009
    Sydney, Australia
  5. Altis macrumors 68030

    Sep 10, 2013
    That would certainly kill the Mini for good for most of its fanbase.

    I can't imagine who would pay upwards of $500 for a desktop with a CPU meant for tablets. Sure small form factor is nice, but it isn't everything.

    Hopefully Apple is just waiting for quad core Broadwell U chips to be available this summer before they update.
  6. Ice Dragon thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Ice Dragon

    Jun 16, 2009
    Broadwell-U will also have a quad core variant? There is no Broadwell-H?
  7. toddzrx macrumors 6502a


    Nov 20, 2012
    Since Apple just updated the Mini a few months ago, it'll be a while before the next one. A possibility I see is that they do go really small by using the new MacBook internals, but updated with Skylake which will have some cool new features. The key would be to keep it fanless and small, and a new Apple display that also serves as a hub; that's where all the connections are made. I know this won't appeal to everyone, but it sure does sound appetizing to me. Would especially be nice if Apple re-introduced a 24" display along side the 27".
  8. crsh1976, Mar 12, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2015

    crsh1976 macrumors 6502a

    Jun 13, 2011
    Broadwell-H will have quad-cores, that's what going to end up in the next 15-inch rMBP for example; no -U quad-core announced so far.
  9. yjchua95 macrumors 604

    Apr 23, 2011
    GVA, KUL, MEL (current), ZQN
    U-series are ULV chipsets destined for ultrabooks and small laptops. There will never be a quad core version available.

    Broadwell-H is only coming in summer.
  10. Micky Do, Mar 12, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2015

    Micky Do macrumors 68000

    Micky Do

    Aug 31, 2012
    An island in the Andaman Sea.
    Totally related….. Within the afore-linked thread there is speculation about Broadwell, and many other Mac Mini related topics besides.

    In truth, no one here on MacRumors can answer the OPs question. Any rumour about the future of the Mini is pure speculation, though the new Mac Mini is almost certainly coming.

    From the 2014 update, and what we have seen from other Mac arrivals, improved functionality seems more likely than substantially increased grunt and outright performance. Expect something evolutionary rather than revolutionary….. something that is more likely to be of interest to new owners, or those replacing much earlier generations, rather than enticing fanboy owners of recent generations to stump up for the latest and greatest thing.

    At this stage, if the HDD of my base model early 2009 Mini failed now, repair would still be my preferred option to replacement. The repair shop would have things sorted within a day or two……..

    In a couple or three years, replacement could well be more cost effective, as was the case for my 2005 original, which was (disappointingly) obsolete for my purposes by 2009. However I have a friend with an even earlier G4 MacBook, that still soldiers on, serving his needs even now.
  11. Ice Dragon thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Ice Dragon

    Jun 16, 2009
    With Apple, it always seems to come down to heat. Right now you have dual-cores that are 28 watts. If in the immediate future, Intel could release a powerful quad-core that was around that, that would be a great thing. Haswell did have a 37 watt quad-core that would have possibly gone into a quad-core mini. Honestly I am one of the few that is happy with the current mini machines except for the fact that Broadwell just gave us Iris 6100 that went into the new 13" rMBP.

    The problem comes down to this, Apple in a way gave us too much with the Mac mini between 2009 and 2012.

    Early 2009, Late 2009, and mid 2010 with the first unibody they gave us Core 2 Duo machines. Mid-2011 we get dual-core and quad-core including one dual-core with discrete graphics. Mid-2012 they take away the discrete graphics but keep the quad-core. It's only because of Intel's numbering system I feel (since Apple wanted to match with 13" rMBP) that things sort of got messed up with the 2014 mini. You have Intel HD 5000 going into the Air, some of the quad-cores for Haswell had HD 4600, Iris 5100, and Iris Pro 5200.

    The argument could be made that they could make a bigger model to accompany Iris Pro but then again they don't want to take away from the sales of the base iMac. I don't count the iMacBook Air for $1,099.
  12. MarkusL macrumors 6502

    Jun 1, 2014
    That thread is a great case study in the difficulty of predicting the arrival of the next Mac mini based on customer expectations and processor technology roadmaps. Those factors are a nice start but they don't consider the "Apple factor", i.e. the strategic considerations of Apple's intentions for the future of the Mac mini.

    As it has been said in this thread, there are not yet any quad core Broadwells appropriate for the Mac mini. But by the time the 2013 Mac mini arrived in late 2014, there were appropriate quad core Haswells available. Removing the quad mini from the lineup at the same time as adding a 15W dual core in addition to the remaining 28W dual cores says something about how Apple views the future of the mini. Slashing the quad could be a way to reduce the expectations for the next one, so the performance drop will be less dramatic if they go 15W for the whole lineup.

    It's not necessarily all bad... if they finally get around to releasing a fanless mini with an SSD as default, I would probably get one to put under my TV and not be bothered by the weakness of the processor. But for other use cases it's a pale shadow of what the mini used to be about.
  13. Wahlstrm macrumors 6502a


    Dec 4, 2013
    Apple needs to release a new Mac Pro first.
    A Haswell/Broadwell quad mini would beat the quad core MAC PRO really bad and that would just look horrible in marketing.. :)

    "Here is the amazing PRO for just $3000 and the even faster mini for $1000" :D
  14. mojolicious macrumors 68000


    Mar 18, 2014
    Sarf London
    Is this part of Apple's eco-shtick, or are computer manufacturers under huge legislative pressure in the US and/or EU to reduce their products' power consumption?

    I appreciate that modern minis practically run on air, and that this has a significant impact upon cost of ownership, but it would be good to retain one or two full fat, bugger the polar bears models in the line-up.
  15. MarkusL macrumors 6502

    Jun 1, 2014
    As far as I know there aren't any strict rules for the power consumption of computers. There's such a wide variety in what different computers need to do, so it's difficult to set rules in the same way as for vacuum cleaners and dishwashers, where each product in a category has approximately the same capabilities.

    I think it's mostly about two things:
    • Apple (and other computer vendors) does not want the laptops to fall too far behind the desktops. In laptops the power consumption will always be a concern. When they drop in power, so do the desktops.
    • They want to go in the direction of fanless computers. Apple took the ugly out of computers, and logically the noise could be the next to go. People love their fanless iPads, and will surely enjoy fanless laptops and desktops too.

    The electricity bills could be a factor as well, especially in places where you pay for twice the power (first pay to run the computer, then pay again to have your air conditioner remove the waste heat). But I don't think most people care about that very much at the moment they are making their purchase decision, so I'm guessing it's not a big item on Apple's agenda.

    All in all I think a fanless Mac nano would be a great idea, but I would prefer if it's in addition to the mini and not a replacement. But there's no way to be sure what Tim thinks.
  16. Ice Dragon thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Ice Dragon

    Jun 16, 2009
    I compared Iris 5100 to Iris 6100 and there's barely much of a difference. Even the difference speed wise from a dual-core Sandy Bridge to a dual-core Broadwell isn't huge however Apple did go and speed up the PCIe SSD speed for this generation. Now I'm still operating off of SATA II interface with a Samsung 470 so if I got the current Iris mini with a PCIe SSD, I'd see 2.5x to 3x jump but the reads on the rMBP are about 5x.

    Doesn't the rMBP have 4 lanes though vs. the Mini which only has two?

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