DGPU in Mini - I’d buy

BigBoy2018

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If Apple, by some graciousness of their heart, decides to offer a Mini with a moderately decent DGPU, then I would totally buy one.
Throw in upgradeable storage and good lord ... the Mini would probably be my favorate mac ever.
 

BigBoy2018

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If you need a DGPU you can add one through Thunderlbolt...
Everything I've read about egpu's is that they're finicky. More importantly that's adding a bunch of bulk to an otherwise slick little Mac computer on my desk. I just want a moderately decent ogpu built in. The whole point of the Mini is to be well ... mini, right?
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I wouldn't buy the mini. The 8th gen CPU overheats and throttles.
Ah, hadn't read that, but I admit I haven't been looking. So a lot of posts about this here?
 

mtneer

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Which is exactly why they wont put one in. They want you to pony up for the Pro machines..
 
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ruslan120

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Unfortunately, yeah.

Another source. (With benchmarks)

Here's one of the results of running the mac's processor constantly at near thermal-limits:

 

Stephen.R

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Unfortunately, yeah.
As several people in that thread clarify: for most people thermal throttling would be when the CPU can't maintain it's base frequency, which as yet I've seen zero reports about.

What you're (presumably) referring to, is it's inability to run at the maximum "turbo boost" frequency for sustained periods of time.
 
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BigBoy2018

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As several people in that thread clarify: for most people thermal throttling would be when the CPU can't maintain it's base frequency, which as yet I've seen zero reports about.

What you're (presumably) referring to, is it's inability to run at the maximum "turbo boost" frequency for sustained periods of time.
Very true, but ....

When. people compare models to other models, often one of the first things that comes up is the geekbench score. And unfortunately geekbench will reflect the full effect of turbo boost on the score.

For instance, an i5 with a base frequency of 2.3ghz that thrbo boosts to 4.1ghz will score almost the same as an ii5 with a base clock of 3.8ghz that only turbo boosts to 4.2ghz.

So to the casual observer, they both seem to have about the same power.

But you and I know in the real world the model with the 3.8ghz i5 will be a much better performer in a lot of tasks.

So thats why I think its critical to also talk about how much a certain processor drops from its max turbo boost speed, since geekbench will paint a deceiving picture if you take the scores at face value (which many people seem to do)
 
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Fishrrman

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Feb 20, 2009
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Discrete GPU in Mini?
99.9999999999999999999999999999999% probability it will never happen... ;)
 

Stephen.R

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So to the casual observer, they both seem to have about the same power.
To the casual observer water looks like vodka. That doesn't mean people are out there claiming "be careful, some of the vodka bottles you buy are so low in alcohol, they're practically not alcohol at all".

So thats why I think its critical to also talk about how much a certain processor drops from its max turbo boost speed, since geekbench will paint a deceiving picture if you take the scores at face value (which many people seem to do)
Sounds like it'd be better to just treat arbitrary benchmarks as... arbitrary?
 
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frou

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If you need a DGPU you can add one through Thunderlbolt...
An empty eGPU enclosure alone costs more than a decent mid-range card, so effectively the card ends up costing 200-300% of its normal price. For example, I got the top-SKU Sapphire RX580 for £145, yet the enclosure to put it in cost £270.

There are some long-term perks (e.g. transferability to other TB3-equipped computers, the possibility to swap the card later) but the fundamental value-for-money of eGPU solutions is pretty damn bad.
 
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BigBoy2018

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Sounds like it'd be better to just treat arbitrary benchmarks as... arbitrary?
Absolutely agreed. But I get the sense a LOT of people (not you or me) take geekbench as some kind of gospel. Heck most mac reviews I read start with a mention of geekbench scores - without any mention to not take those scores as a definitive measure of a systems’ real world power.
 

Chapter

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Jul 13, 2019
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I think a reasonable product would be the Mac Mini Pro. Essentially, it is the poor person's Mac Pro. Features:
  • Socketed CPU with optional 6, 8, and future 10 core. (non Xeon)
  • Two SODIMM slots.
  • One full-length double-wide slot which can be used for a MPX graphics card. Expand the MPX lineup to include Vega 56, Vega 64, and Navi cards.
  • 600W power supply.
  • A smaller footprint. Two front fans and one blower.
 
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BigBoy2018

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Why not get an eGPU ?
umm, as I said in my earlier post >

Everything I've read about egpu's is that they're finicky. More importantly that's adding a bunch of bulk to an otherwise slick little Mac computer on my desk. I just want a moderately decent dgpu built in. The whole point of the Mini is to be well ... mini, right?

All I’m saying is give us an option for a built in gpu that doesnt totally suck. If they did, I’d totally be buying one.
 
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Plutonius

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umm, as I said in my earlier post >

Everything I've read about egpu's is that they're finicky. More importantly that's adding a bunch of bulk to an otherwise slick little Mac computer on my desk. I just want a moderately decent dgpu built in. The whole point of the Mini is to be well ... mini, right?

All I’m saying is give us an option for a built in gpu that doesnt totally suck. If they did, I’d totally be buying one.
Look at the size of the different PCI video cards.

With the size of the Mini, Apple couldn't fit much of a video card in the chassis (i.e. it would probably be pretty bad).

There would also be a problem with the heat :(.

With an eGPU chassis, people have the capability of upgrading their video cards.

I haven't heard any problems with eGPUs but I'll admit I really haven't looked into them.
 

tpivette89

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Jan 1, 2018
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Look at the size of the different PCI video cards.

With the size of the Mini, Apple couldn't fit much of a video card in the chassis (i.e. it would probably be pretty bad).

There would also be a problem with the heat :(.

With an eGPU chassis, people have the capability of upgrading their video cards.

I haven't heard any problems with eGPUs but I'll admit I really haven't looked into them.
I've had an eGPU hooked up to my 2018 Mini practically since day 1 with no problems whatsoever. I fully agree... with an eGPU I can continually upgrade my GPU to the latest and greatest if necessary. Also agree about the extra heat a dGPU would create... people complain about the 2018 Mini thermally throttling as is, imagine if there was another heat generating component in the setup! Not only would it cause the CPU to dial it's performance back even further, but it would shorten the life of the coveted dGPU as well (which is exactly what happened to the 2011 model). Hmm, wonder why Apple stopped putting them in the Mini chassis after one year?

It's funny that people complain about the Mini NOT having a dGPU, but the ONLY Mini to ever have this feature was the 2011, and that GPU was very failure prone. It's not like Apple has always had a dGPU in each Mini and suddenly dropped it with this particular release... the much hallowed 2012 had only integrated graphics, and the 2014 Mini had the same. So why does the 2018 get so much hate for doing the same thing that all the previous ones did?
 
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k27

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Jan 23, 2018
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Also agree about the extra heat a dGPU would create... people complain about the 2018 Mini thermally throttling as is, imagine if there was another heat generating component in the setup!
The mini doesn't have to be mini for me. Make the Mac mini a little bigger. I would even prefer a tower under the table => No computer and cable stuff on the table. Out of sight, out of mind. And away from the ears.
 
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ruslan120

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If they can fit DGPUs as powerful as they are into the MacBook Pro they can do it in the Mini. Don’t expect it to be upgradable, of course.
MBP’s have soldered on RAM to save space.

Out of genuine curiosity, if you had to choose between user-upgradable RAM and a dGPU, which would you pick?

(I would go for upgradable RAM and the ability to use an eGPU).
 
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theluggage

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the much hallowed 2012 had only integrated graphics, and the 2014 Mini had the same. So why does the 2018 get so much hate for doing the same thing that all the previous ones did?
For starters, its 2019 and you're much more likely to want to run a 5k display - or a pair of 4k displays - from your Mini.

Also, they've bumped the prices by $200-$300, but if we complain about that we're told that its a new, far more powerful 'pro' product than the old one.... except the extra grunt comes from using the space freed by spinning rust to fit a desktop-class processor which is actually cheaper (relative to contemporary processors) than the low-power chips in the old Minis (... especially as they've 'downgraded' the entry-level one from i5 to i3 in the process).

So, make up your mind, is it supposed to be more powerful (w.r.t. other 2018 systems) than the 2012/2014 models or not?