Buy 2009 Mac Pro or wait for new mini?

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by OS-SEX, Jan 27, 2014.

  1. OS-SEX macrumors member

    OS-SEX

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2012
    #1
    I am debating whether to purchase a refurbished 2009 Mac Pro from Mega Macs for $650 or waiting for the new mini to arrive. I currently do my computing on a 2011 mini which does most of what I want quite well. Where it falls down is in the light 3d gaming and occasional video editing that I do. I realize that the processor in the 09 Mac Pro is getting kind of old but keep in mind that I have a Radeon 5770 just collecting dust that I can drop in the Pro on day one. Bearing this in mind, which Mac is likely to be a better value performer?
     
  2. slayerizer macrumors 6502a

    slayerizer

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2012
    Location:
    Canada
    #2
    lower-end 2009 mac pro bench lower than current gen i7 mac mini. So it depends of the specifications of the one you can get. I would not expect OpenCL to be compatible with this old GPU. Then you have to buy the right RAM for it. ECC ram price is not cheap, if you go non ECC you have to replace every dimm.

    With the new i7 mini, that would give you a score around 13000. Memory is cheaper. Gives you a display port/TB port. The embedded GPU could be quicker than your Radeon, at least it will be more modern.

    Unless you have bad ass expensive dual xeon in there, I would pass.

    mac pro score

    Besides that, the mini will be a lot cheaper on your electricity bill. I do audio/video on my mac, but most of the time I just surf or sync itunes.
     
  3. OS-SEX thread starter macrumors member

    OS-SEX

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2012
    #3
    Thanks for the advice. I think I will wait to see the specs and price of the upcoming mini before I make my decision.
     
  4. blanka macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2012
    #4
    What drive is in your 2011 mini? The basic 5400rpm HD. Then that is the big trouble in video editing, not the GPU.
    The current Mini's can be equiped with dual SSD's in Raid 0, beating NMP PCI SSD's, so there is lot of room for serious IO speed in the Mini. Imagine a 2011 Mini with super cheap double 1TB SSD's in 2016! Lot of room to improve!
    The new Mini will probably not offer this, and will stick to 1 PCI SSD slot with more expensive proprietary modules, and if Apple is kind, one traditional 2,5 inch bay.
     
  5. willgreene99 macrumors regular

    willgreene99

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2010
    Location:
    DFW
    #5
    I personally would wait to see how the new Mini is equipped. The Mac Pro would more than likely outpace the mini for doing video rendering, if it has dual quad-core or dual hex-cores. But for most everything else, the Mini should be faster.

    Although Intel's knowledge base shows that even the current gen Mini's CPU should be able to handle 32GB of ram, I have not seen anyone try to put two 16GB modules in their Mini.

    I'm hoping that a new Mini, if it arrives, would have a CPU close to somewhere close to the late 2013 Macbook Pro 15". If it does, then it should be fast enough to do just about anything, except video work such as Final Cut Pro and others, and be more affordable than a 2013 Mac Pro.

    But back to original comparison, the 2009 Mac Pro seems to be a good value at $650, because even the current Mac Mini, once you upgrade the memory and drives to SSD, will be a few hundred dollars more and may not give a better video experience than the 5770. I think the Iris or Iris Pro would yield closer results to the 5770.

    However, if and when Apple does release a Broadwell based Mac Mini, the graphics should be even faster. According to Intel, about 40% faster than Iris. So throw that in the mix and then weigh all of your options.

    Me, I'm getting the Mac Mini that is hopefully released later this year.
     
  6. Cloudsurfer macrumors 65816

    Cloudsurfer

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2007
    Location:
    Netherlands
    #6
    That is because there are no 16GB So-dimms, at least not to my knowledge. This is why the iMac has four memory slots. A 32GB mini would be rather sweet though.
     
  7. Crosscreek macrumors 68030

    Crosscreek

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    Nov 19, 2013
    Location:
    Margarittaville
    #7
    What would be interesting to see are some benchmarks of the new Broadwell chips in something so we can see what the GPU can really do. IMHO Apple will push for 4k capabilities in all new Macs with a introduction of Apple 4k monitors to go with the nMP and might give the Mini that capability also. Broadwell should be powerful enough with TB2 to do that.
     
  8. Schnort macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2013
    #8
    Haswell can already drive 4k displays with 2d graphics without issue.

    Broadwell would have to be much much faster to make 3d useful for 4k displays.
     
  9. Crosscreek macrumors 68030

    Crosscreek

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2013
    Location:
    Margarittaville
    #9
    I had a 13 rMBP Haswell with Iris. It could play UHD at 30hz but the trackpad was unusable with the amount of lag. True 4k would have been worse. You may be able to play a movie but you can not work with it. Hopefully Broadwell will help that. Intel claims 40% improvement over Haswell. I would like to see that tested independently.
     

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