How bad will the cheapest new mini *really* be?

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by Florals, Oct 16, 2014.

  1. Florals macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2013
    #1
    I've got to admit, the £358 price tag of the lowest-spec mini (with Educational discount) has really caught my attention, but my question is this: how sluggish will it really be?

    I am currently chugging along with a 2006 Core Duo mini which is growing slower and slower with each passing day, so I need to buy something soon. I'm extremely tempted by the 5K iMac but am the cautious sort who would rather wait a year or two for the various kinks to be ironed out, so I'm considering buying the cheapest Mini to last until I'm sure the 5K iMac isn't riddled with problems.

    In your opinion, what would be the biggest limitations of the low-end Mini? Would I see lag when performing everyday tasks, such as word processing and light photoshopping? Would I be an idiot to spend £350 on this machine?
     
  2. Intell macrumors P6

    Intell

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2010
    Location:
    Inside
    #2
    It would be a very big jump over your current Mac Mini and will last you for just as long as your current Mini.
     
  3. Che Castro macrumors 603

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    May 21, 2009
    #3
    what about going from a 2012 base to 2014 base mini ?
     
  4. Intell macrumors P6

    Intell

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    Jan 24, 2010
    Location:
    Inside
    #4
    There would be a slight drop in CPU, but a gain in GPU.
     
  5. Mr. Retrofire macrumors 603

    Mr. Retrofire

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2010
    Location:
    www.emiliana.cl/en
    #5
    No change in the single thread performance:
    http://www.cpubenchmark.net/compare.php?cmp[]=815&cmp[]=2238

    It is a good computer for students who like low electricity bills (especially with Mavericks+ (including 10.10)).
     
  6. hipnetic macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2010
    #6
    FYI, I'm trying to track the specific CPU model numbers and specs here:
    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1802240

    As Mr. Retrofire said, it looks like the cheapest model might only be slightly slower than the previous base model. Plus, you'll get a newer GPU, a $100 price cut, 802.11ac (if that means anything to you). Not a great box for a server, but it should be decent as a regular computer.
     
  7. Cape Dave macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2012
    Location:
    Northeast
    #7
    Rule of thumb: If it has a spinner, it will suck hard.
     
  8. Tough Guy macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2014
    #8
    How do Apple computers get slower over time?

    I hear this a LOT from mac users. My 5 year old PC is the exact same speed, no faster and no slower, than it was the day I bought it.

    Do mac components start to rust or something?
     
  9. Oracle1729 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2009
    #9
    You're extremely tempted by a very expensive, gorgeous, high-end display, that should be good for many years of service before it starts to feel dated...that's permanently attached to a second-rate 2013 CPU that's will be junk in a couple of short years?

    Some people really can't see the forest for the trees and Apple makes a fortune off those suckers.
     
  10. iSayuSay macrumors 68040

    iSayuSay

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2011
    #10
    You know what? Maybe that's Apple's point. Sell something that is the latest and the greatest (the 5K display) tied to something mediocre (2013 "high end" mobile graphic).

    Those Apple suckers would spend more money that way. Win-lose for Apple. Me? I just want the display. I had a bad experience with the iMac (dirty display, failing GPU and hard drive). So it would be better if Apple sell a 5K Cinema Display and let me plug whichever computer I choose (Macbook, gaming PC etc). But I doubt it would happen anytime soon. It's Apple, you know. They go slowly and steadily rather than revolutionary.

    ----------

    By making the software harder to run?

    It's been that way since Windows 95, and also iOS. It's mostly the software that makes you buy the new one. It was Siri that sell the 4S, it was Touch ID (cheap extra hardware + polished software) that sell the 5S, it was sluggish free UI operation that makes you wanna buy the 6 or 6+
     
  11. Micky Do macrumors 68000

    Micky Do

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2012
    Location:
    An island in the Andaman Sea.
    #11
    Probably not bad at all for basic everyday functions. The power is more in the OS and apps than the hardware…..

    As was the case long ago. Macs always used to seem under-speced compared to PCs, but they were more efficient at using the hardware.

    For those whose needs or desires are more demanding, there is a Mini to suit.

    Those who expect something akin to Mac Pro performance and specs at Mini prices (there do seem to be a few) are bound to be disappointed….. and whinging on forums such as this.
     
  12. Oracle1729 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2009
    #12
    I'd be interested in the display, but I will never buy an AIW. With their 2560x1440 displays, they were only available in iMacs for ages before standalone screens. It will be available standalone in a couple of years.

    But judging by this new mini, I won't be an Apple user at all any more. I'm just waiting for the Broadwell version of the i7-4790k to come out in a few months and I'll be building a windows box.

    By making the software harder to run?

    I don't know about that. Their current Mac offerings are all so bad, I'd rather pass on the latest software features if need be. Not that there's anything really nice looking in iOS 8 or Yosemite. Convergence. ROFL.

    I cared more for a 4.7" screen than anything in the 5 or 5s. I replaced my 4s with a galaxy S4 last year. You know what though, I found out I hate android, iOS is far superior. But that screen on the S4 more than made up for it so I was still happy with my choice. I know I would trade the S4 for a 6 in a heartbeat if I could, but I'm now 11 months into a 3-year Contract (Canada still had 3-year ones last year). So in 25 months we'll see where Apple goes. So far though I'm just laughing at how buggy iOS 8 seems to be.
     
  13. Florals thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2013
    #13
    Hence why I said I wasn't planning on buying one for a couple of years? I'm optimistic that by then it might have something a bit more meaty inside.

    Would a refurb 2012 potentially be a better choice than the 2014 base? I'm just not sure I could get over it coming with the HD4000!
     
  14. Oracle1729 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2009
    #14
    What will change in a few years? I good monitor should be good 10 years. A good computer 3-4 years. It's been like that since before Woz invented the Mac and it's still true today.

    HD4000 or Iris are 1 generation apart integrated graphics. It really is annoying to buy the old stuff, but it's just not that major a difference.

    Personally, I don't like either option, so I'm going to put together a PC, but if you insist on a mac mini, the 2012 is the better choice across the whole product range. I actually was reluctantly willing to pay an extra $300 for the i7 quad core, but I misread that and it's also a dual core. So the mid-range 2012 stock model beats the entire 2014 line including BTO options. That's just sad.
     
  15. poppy10 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2012
    Location:
    UK
    #15
    Why not buy the iMac and just use it as an external display then? It is priced the same as Dell's 5k monitor (the only other 5k display that has been announced) at $2499. Treat it as a display with a free Mac thrown in - you can just ignore it if you want and hook up an external device to use as a dumb monitor.
     
  16. weaverra macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2006
    #16
    Every windows machine I have ever had needed to be refreshed every year or so.

    ----------

    Yes if you are totally maxing out all four cores of that machine. That would pretty much render that machines useless until that cleared up.

    ----------

    I would say that people making real money aren't whining about it. They buy what they need and continue on. It's all the hobbyist that complain about the full version of AutoCAD and Photoshop being so expensive.
     
  17. iSayuSay macrumors 68040

    iSayuSay

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2011
    #17
    Question is how would I connect another computer (maybe even Windows PC) to an iMac?

    Target Display Mode requires Thunderbolt output from the computer you want to plug in, most of which is not available in PC. It also requires OS X on both sides, and by today's standard there is no computer (including Macs) were able to use a 5K resolution with a single cable, not even Thunderbolt 2.

    In short, the 5K capability is only usable by computer inside the iMac. Plus I'm sure Dell will have to rethink about its 5K monitor pricing, it won't be $2500 or it'll be a hard sell. Thanks to Apple.
     
  18. cfedu Suspended

    cfedu

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2009
    Location:
    Toronto
    #18
    Go with the 2012 all the way, if you want to upgrade RAM or add second drive at a later date.
     
  19. Mal67 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2006
    Location:
    West Oz
    #19
    I have used the 1.4 on the Air for some time with 4 gig and hadn't noticed any problems. Mainly lots of wp, internet, downloading and viewing uni vids etc. Of course this Air has an ssd. However if it was me I would stump up the extra for the middle model if you've got the cash there for the improved graphics and the extra Ram.
     
  20. Alekto macrumors regular

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    Nov 15, 2012
    Location:
    Tokyo
    #20
    The computers don't get any slower, the software just gets more demanding.
     
  21. Tough Guy macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2014
    #21
    That's a shame.

    If you bought a PC in 2007 with Vista, it can run any version of windows ever made. The newer versions even run faster on the same hardware.
     
  22. Alekto macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2012
    Location:
    Tokyo
    #22
    Well, yeah, sure it'll run but I doubt it'd run as well as it would on the latest hardware. Depends on what you're doing with your machine. For my mum (a woman in her early 60s) a 500 ghz Celeron laptop with windows XP runs perfectly fine. For me, that'd drive me nuts. lol.
     
  23. Osamede macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2009
    #23
    I have one of the MBAs from work and its noticeably slower running Handbrake.
     
  24. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    Joined:
    May 19, 2002
    #24
    On a positive note, it is likely to kick the new HP Stream Laptops in all the benchmarks.

    Hard not to beat a Windows machine that has a 1GHz CPU, 2GB Ram and a 32GB drive.

    So while Apple starts after the low end again, the Windows market fights back against both Apple and the Chromebooks.

    Still amazed Apple hasn't attempted a return of something similar to the eMate and the Chromebooks-style machines.
     
  25. mtneer macrumors 68030

    mtneer

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2012
    #25
    Software gets more demanding over time - by natural progression and with Apple, maybe by choice, as a way to push consumers to upgrade hardware where they make all their money.

    Apple is also traditionally more aggressive with dropping support to older hardware, many times going out of their way to not support older hardware to encourage new sales.
     

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