How Much Would You Invest?

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by tibas92013, Aug 1, 2016.

  1. tibas92013, Aug 1, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2016

    tibas92013 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2013
    Location:
    Costa Rica
    #1
    I have a Refurbished i5 Mac Mini(Late 2012), 2.5Ghz, 16GB Ram, 500GB HD;so, I want to add a SSD to this mix.

    I bought this Mac Mini which only had 4GB Ram on August 01, 2013 from the Apple On-Line Store for around $650 which included the Costa Rica Customs Tax. Last year I upgraded the Ram from 4GB to 16GB for a cost of around $200, so, I have around $950 invested in this Mac Mini as of this date which also includes the cost of AppleCare which expires Today.

    I have contacted a couple of Apple Authorized Dealers here in Costa Rica as we do not have a Apple Store here in Costa Rica and they quoted me a $350 price for a "Kingston Brand" installed 480GB SSD. I am also thinking of going the External SSD route which would cost around $200.00 which includes the Costa Rica Customs Tax. I am presently using this Mac Mini as a back-up computer which is still on OS X "Mountain Lion" and my thinking is that I should replace the present Hard Drive with an SSD before installing OS X "El Capitan".

    I also have another Refurbished i5 Mac Mini(Late 2014), 2.8GHz, 8GB Ram, 256SSD that I bought last year as my everyday hands-on Computer. I am a light user in surfing web, letters, on-line buying, etc.

    Final thought; both of these Mac Minis have served me well but what a difference in performance with a MM that has a Apple SSD!

    Any thoughts regarding the above will be greatly appreciated
     
  2. jpietrzak8 macrumors 65816

    jpietrzak8

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2010
    Location:
    Dayton, Ohio
    #2
    From my point of view, the question would be how long do you intend to continue using the Mini. With Thunderbolt, unless you're doing some really really heavy database work, the performance difference between internal and external SSDs is going to be negligible. Therefore, the main advantage of an internal drive is convenience. The main advantage, in my opinion, of an external drive is that it can easily be moved to another machine in the future.

    So, if you plan to keep using the Mini forever, go ahead and give it an internal SSD. :) If you do plan on upgrading in the foreseeable future though, you'll get more out of your investment by not tying it so deeply to the Mini...
     
  3. jmiddel macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2010
    Location:
    Land of Enchantment
    #3
    It's not that hard to replace the drive yourself, a 500g Samsung ssd is under $150, I'd go for it, it's s great machine.
     
  4. BenTrovato macrumors 68020

    BenTrovato

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2012
    Location:
    Canada
    #4
    I just added a hard drive myself. The videos people made are great. I'm waiting for the Sata cable to arrive but it's actually fun to take the mini apart and work on it. With that said, watch the video and if it looks to difficult then you're better off paying someone.
     
  5. Kaida macrumors regular

    Kaida

    Joined:
    May 28, 2016
    Location:
    Singapore
    #5
    Apple SSD is still a Samsung 830 for Mac Mini 2012. For all you know, the Authorised dealers could be giving you a "generic" SSD and charge you Apple SSD price.

    You can easily get at Samsung Evo 850 for a cheaper price nowadays and install it yourself with a dual hdd kit.
     
  6. tibas92013 thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Jun 2, 2013
    Location:
    Costa Rica
    #6
    First-off I want to Thank you and the other Forum Members that commented for your recommendations!

    As to installing it myself my eyes and finger dexterity have somewhat withered at age 73 so I will leave it to a Apple Expert to install the internal SSD in my MM. The brand that the Apple Authorized Dealer quoted me was a "Kingston" Brand and comes with a one(1) year guarantee.
     
  7. tubeexperience, Aug 2, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2016

    tubeexperience macrumors 68030

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    Feb 17, 2016
    #7
  8. BenTrovato macrumors 68020

    BenTrovato

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2012
    Location:
    Canada
    #8
    It depends who you talk to. Some will tell you to go with Samsung. I went with Kingston for the lower price and didn't need the better performance of the Samsung. I understand at 73 you might not want to do it. If money is no issue then pay the best person. You could always reach out to friends or family and ask if they know any technically competent people. There's always a chance someone in your circle has a friend or kid who knows their way around technology.
     
  9. tibas92013, Aug 6, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2016

    tibas92013 thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Location:
    Costa Rica
    #9
    Again, thanx to all that responded to my Post; I have decided to go with a Crucial SSD with a External Case Enclosure in which I plan loading and then booting OS X "El Capitan" from this External SSD.

    My understanding by going the External Connection route that it will lack TRIM capability in which I will not be able to update any Firmware when needed??
     
  10. EnderBeta macrumors 6502

    EnderBeta

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2016
    #10
  11. MRrainer macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2008
    Location:
    Zurich, Switzerland
    #11
    The problem is USB. Not sure if you can do TRIM through USB. My SSD is also internal, external was never an option for me. But then I'm not 73 yet.
    Your case should support USAP to get the most out of it.
    I also doubt you'll be able to update the firmware, yes. This usually needs native ATA-commands, which probably aren't available on USB.
     
  12. Algus macrumors regular

    Algus

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2014
    Location:
    Arizona
    #12
    For what it is worth, I have the exact model you specify with the exact end user upgrades you specify. I put in 16 GB of RAM shortly after purchase and installed a 960 GB SSD about a year ago. I use this Mac mini to drive two 1440p displays.

    It's a great computer, speedy, with tons of storage and excellent response time. It's only obvious failing, for me, is its graphics capability. I sometimes get weird visual glitches or slowdown from pushing my Mini's old internal chip. I play a lot of computer games as well and this system surprisingly holds up well though I do not enable many visual options.

    If you don't specifically need the graphics chip then I would certainly expect this machine to continue to perform at great levels for many years to come. We are just now starting to see 16 GB of RAM become more common in newer systems and then only in more expensive higher end machines.

    I would also consider it worth the money to pay someone to do the install. I did the install myself and it was quite difficult. I have some nerve damage in my right hand and the combination of a very small work area with tiny parts certainly made it a struggle.
     
  13. Fishrrman macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #13
    MRrainer wrote:
    "The problem is USB. Not sure if you can do TRIM through USB"

    I've been using a late-2012 Mini since January of 2013. From day 1, I've booted and run it via a USB3 SATA-dock with an SSD.
    I have never had TRIM enabled, because you can't use TRIM with USB3.
    BUT -- this has NEVER been a problem for me.
    The Mini boots and runs as fast today as it did 3.5 years ago, no slowdowns noticeable at all.

    In my experience as an end user of USB3, the issue of TRIM has meant NOTHING AT ALL.
    It doesn't seem to be anything worth worrying over.

    For those with USB3, it may be easiest, cheapest, fastest and least risky to just plug in an external USB3 SSD and "run with it".

    This solution has worked great for me.
    I recommend it without hesitation.
     
  14. Jambalaya macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2013
    Location:
    UK
    #14
    Personally I would have said 8GB (or 10 ie just chaning one 2 chip for an 8) and an SSD would have been the best upgrades to start with. Yes an SSD will be worth it for day to day use. If you are going to run it only as a backup then its notvreally worth it.
     
  15. Yebubbleman macrumors 68030

    Yebubbleman

    Joined:
    May 20, 2010
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    #15
    I say max it out at 16GB and slap in the biggest SSD you can afford. Might as well. The best thing about the Late 2012 Mac mini compared to the Late 2014 mini is the expandability options you have (well, that and the quad-core CPU on the model that has it [which I recognize doesn't apply to you here]). The procedure is fairly easy and iFixit has the tools you'd need to easily do the swap yourself. Go for it!
     
  16. tibas92013, Sep 5, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2016

    tibas92013 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2013
    Location:
    Costa Rica
    #16
    I really appreciate all the above excellent responses to my original Post; since my MM(late 2012) was running really slow on OSX "Mountain Lion" I decided to take-the-plunge in upgrading to OSX "El Capitan" last Friday. I did a direct Upgrade from the Apple App Store in which everything turned-out A-OK and it took about five(5) Hours to complete this upgrade of this OSX with all my files.

    I am really pleasantly surprised at the improvement in speed in using "El Capitan" and my original thinking was that I needed to replace my MM HDD with a SSD before any installation of any new Operating System. I still plan to purchase a SSD with External Case in the very near future but as of this date my "Old " HDD seems to be handling all my "light" Computer Needs.

    Oh, before I installed "El Cap" I "cloned" my HDD using the excellent "Carbon Copy Cloner" Software and is now installed on my WD "My Passport" External Drive and also backed-up on my Apple Time Capsule using "Time Machine".
     
  17. Fishrrman macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #17
    OP wrote above:
    "I still plan to purchase a SSD with External Case in the very near future"

    You might also consider a "ready-to-go" SSD like these by Sandisk:
    http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B00ZTRY532?tag=delt-20

    Just "plug it in and go", quite compact as well.

    Again, refer to my post #13 above...
     

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