Does the 2012 Mac mini use mobile processors?

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by MetzoPaino, Oct 25, 2012.

  1. MetzoPaino macrumors member

    Oct 24, 2012
    I'm trying to decide wether to get an iMac or Mac mini to replace my early 2008 MacBook Pro. I was hoping someone could clear some things up about the Mac mini, because I've not given it much attention until now.

    I would probably get the 2.6 i7 processor, (I'm a musician and a lot of synths are very CPU heavy), but I'm not sure if the Mac mini uses a mobile or underclocked version? How they compare to the processors in the new iMacs, is an i7 always better than an i5, even when the i5 is 2.9GHz and the i7 2.6GHz?

    How easy is it to mess around on the insides? I'll probably go with the 1TB fusion drive for ease, but I would buy 16GB of RAM elsewhere. I know iFixit sells a kit to open it up or something.

    Finally, are there any go-to displays? Probably at least 21 inch, and preferably ok looking.
  2. chuckd83 macrumors regular

    Jul 12, 2010
    Yes, they use mobile processors. Go here to find the processor that matches the description from Apple for the Mini. Then go here to find the processor that matches the description from Apple for the iMac. Then go here to compare the two processors in question. It will give you a mark (higher is better).

    For example,
    the Mac Mini mid level is a i7 2.3 GHz Quad which tells me it is a 3610QM, mark of 7589.
    iMac base is a i5 2.7 GHz Quad which is a 3330S, mark of less than 5992 (which is the 3330).
  3. mystic man macrumors member

    Nov 1, 2009
    Athens, Greece
    since I m on the same boat, on deciding If Im going to purchase a new mac mini and which one, I did a little research on the new mac mini s cpu s performance wise

    the i5 of the base model is on par with the i3-2120

    the i7 2.3 is on par with the AMD FX-8150

    and the i7 2.6 is on par with the i7-2600k

    pretty good, the middle model is definitely worth the extra cash probably the upgrade too
  4. blanka, Oct 25, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2012

    blanka macrumors 68000

    Jul 30, 2012
    Remember that there is no such thing as mobile processors. There is only Mobile-branded processors. Most models exist in exact the same config for desktop and mobile, only at a higher listing price with the mobile badge on it. But the designers at Apple know this, and pay desktop prizes. Don't worry.

    If you worry about speed:
    The Macmini BTO 2.6 Ghz is the fastest mac you can buy (if you leave the 12 core Pro and the top BTO iMac 27 inch models out of consideration), it is on par with the fastest MBPro. I know it sounds amazing, but no other mac gives you a Geekbench of 13000 at only 900 bucks.

    And the Ram: your 2 year old kid can upgrade it. Piece of cake. Don't pay Apple dollars for it.

    The screen: grab a Dell Ultrasharp or Fujitsu IPS (if you like white screens), they are good IPS monitors at a decent price. Don't worry about looks. You won't notice while working with it, and your GF does not care shït too. If you are serious about color, go for a NEC PA series. They even look chunkier, which I like. It shows you have a serious display, not a clown-one like an Apple Thunderbolt. You are a musician, this was useless info.
  5. mystic man macrumors member

    Nov 1, 2009
    Athens, Greece
    another difference I want to mention between the 2 i7 setups is that the 2.6 i7 has its HD 4000 gpu set on a higher clock speed

    on the 2.6 it runs at 650mhz-1250mhz where on the 2.3 it runs between 650mhz-1100mhz. Dont know if its the same on the mini but thats abit of a differnce on graphics too
    also the 2.3 does not support something called vT-d
  6. the27thvoice macrumors member

    Sep 13, 2012
    The iFixit kit is for a complete disassembly of the computer. You don't need that. The RAM is under a single lid, and it opens with your thumbs. You can do it all without tools in less than five minutes.
  7. MetzoPaino thread starter macrumors member

    Oct 24, 2012
    Really? I would have thought that the order would have been:
    i7 Mac Mini -> i7 21.5" iMac -> i7 27" iMac -> Mac Pro

    Also, what does BTO stand for, I keep seeing it on these forums? I know what it must mean, but not what it stands for.
  8. Runnernorth macrumors member

    Oct 24, 2011
    Build To Order ;)
  9. cmeisenzahl macrumors 6502

    Oct 7, 2005
    Maybe Built To Order? That's my guess.
  10. fig macrumors 6502a


    Jun 13, 2012
    Austin, TX
    Other have mentioned that it's the 3615QM? Doesn't really matter much either way, similar benchmarks. We'll really need full benchmarks for all the different machines to be able to do the iMac to mini comparisons though.

    Build to Order, i.e. SSD, upgraded CPU, etc.

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