Just got my 2012 mini

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by BurnerET, Jan 9, 2016.

  1. BurnerET macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2015
    #1
    Hey all, I just got my late 2012 mac mini. I ended up going with the 2.3 i7 with a 1tb hdd, and 16gb ram. Ive a few questions, hoping for this wise boards guidance. I ordered the OWC add a drive kit and a samsung 850 500gb ssd last night. Is there anything in particular I need to do as far as when I get the ssd installed, set up wise to optimize performance/speed. I don't quite understand the whole fusion drive set up.

    The main things I will be using the mini for is storing all my media (movies, music etc) to stream via plex to the house. Also will probably use it for some photo editing, nothing intensive, just our personal photos from the little BurnerET.

    Storage wise I have a seagate external 3tb usb drive Im temporarily using to just start uploading until I decide what I want storage wise permanently. Ive been going back and forth between DAS and NAS. I honestly don't think I will use NAS for anything, so Ive kind of decided on DAS. Ive been going back and forth between a buffalo and a Synology. Only thing I want for sure is some sort of RAID for redundancy in case of failure. I looked at the buffalo duo core. Any suggestions?

    The mac mini will be in my media cabinet, connected to my denon x4000 via HDMI, which distributes video to the living room and bed room tv. Is it possible to use an HDMI splitter and send one HDMI to my denon and say another to a tv/monitor in office to use the mini as a "computer" for editing photos? (if that makes any sense) Thanks again for all the help thus far
     
  2. Algus macrumors regular

    Algus

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2014
    Location:
    Arizona
    #2
    Click Apple Icon->System Report

    Hardware->SATA/SATA Express and choose your hard drive. Look for the section that reads "Bay Name:" and see what bay it is installed in. If your drive is installed in the "lower" bay you are good to go and can follow the instructions and videos OWC provides.

    If your drive is installed in the "upper" bay you will need to get some additional parts from OWC. They sell a supplemental kit for the lower bay. The install is actually easier IMO if you are going into the lower bay b/c you don't have to completely remove the logic board. It is fairly easy to drop the drive into the lower bay and reassemble everything.

    Be sure to keep the install videos ready to go if you've never done a project like this. It is not hard but it is time consuming and the parts are actually a lot smaller than you will see in the videos. For me, I had big hands and it was kind of a PITA but worth it.

    See attached image for checking the location of your current hard drive

    baylocation.png
     
  3. BurnerET thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2015
    #3
    Yea, I checked that last night and it is a lower. So should I move the 1tb to the upper and put the SSD in the lower? I swapped out the drive on my macbook pro with a samsung ssd 1tb. my brother in law is a it tech guy by trade so he is my kind of go to person for said jobs, but I like learning and being informed on what is going on as well.
     
  4. Algus macrumors regular

    Algus

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2014
    Location:
    Arizona
    #4
    It doesn't matter what the configuration is but the instructions OWC ships assumes that your current drive is installed in the lower bay. If you're already there it will be easier to follow along with their videos and the guide they send you. For my system my factory drive was in the upper bay so I just dropped my OWC drive into the lower bay.

    It is a good project for getting your hands dirty with small electronic components. You can't really break anything unless you're careless with the spudger when dislodging the airport card from its connector on the logic board.

    I would not bother with the fusion drive. It combines an SSD and HDD into a single drive (at least it shows both drives to you as a single drive) but it handles management of what goes on the SSD itself. I would rather do that by hand as especially in my case I have a larger SSD than HDD.

    You don't really have to do anything to improve speed or the like. It is pretty plug and play. I would recommend a USB drive and do a clean install of OS X onto your new drive rather than cloning the old drive or something like that. You can do an install on the fresh drive without even touching the original if you are so inclined. When I did my install, I left my 500 GB HDD alone for awhile and once everything was up and running, I copied what I wanted at my leisure and eventually formatted the drive.

    Sounds like you have done your homework. GL with the install.
     
  5. phrehdd macrumors 68040

    phrehdd

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2008
    #5
    Just more peanuts to toss into the gallery here - Install the SSD and leave the traditional 2.5 drive OUT of the Mac Mini. If you plan to do lots of heavy tasks, the Mini can get heated up pretty quickly. The 2.5 drive could be used as a TM drive or back ups etc. As for DAS, it really depends on your budget and how much space you want. For media playback, USB3 is more than enough and TB is overkill. In fact, a good USB2 external drive is sufficient for 1080p play as well as music. The use of USB3 might be an improvement for larger discs and ensure continuous throughput when multi-tasking. DAS options with RAID have the potential for drive redundancy but not enclosure power failure. Just be aware of this and of course, make sure you use some sort of surge protection. Areca offers premium enclosures and full software control from your Mini. Smaller lesser USB type enclosure also can do the job. For me, it is about consistency, reduced potential for failures due to cheap product and of course, quiet fans.
     
  6. nebo1ss macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2010
    #6
    What a strange suggestion. My 2012 mac mini server was shipped from Apple with 2 1TB 2.5 inch drives. It never overheats.
     
  7. BigRed1 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2011
    #7
    I've been looking to get a '12 mini. Where did you get it? I'm having a hard time finding one.
     
  8. BurnerET thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2015
    #8
    I bought it off ebay
     
  9. davekro macrumors regular

    davekro

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2011
    Location:
    No. Calif.
    #9
    I bought a 2012 i7 2.6 w/ 840 Pro 512ssd already installed. I chose to un-fuse because: 1) I DID NOT NEED A 1.5 TB (Fused) drive 2) potential failure of one drive crashes the entire fusion drive. Since 512 GB is more than double what I have in data stored, 512GB will always be overkill for a drive size (for my needs). I left the 1TB HDD inside and use it as a Time machine B'Up. I also do a daily incremental back up to my external 3TB USB 3.0 with Carbon Copy Cloner. I like having an entire bootable clone available.
     
  10. Celerondon macrumors 6502a

    Celerondon

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2013
    Location:
    Southern Cal
    #10
    Yes nebo1ss, folks sometimes speculate about overheating risks on these minis. These warnings are more frequent for the i7 models. The powerful quad core processors naturally make more heat when they are performing more work. That fan doesn't bother me! The way I see it, my i7 is no better than an i5 until the fan starts whooshing! :D

    I don't get the concern about HDD heat production. As working hardware, spinners make heat but not enough to make a difference. Can't we all agree that the CPU is the main heat generator for a personal computer? Who has ever heard of a mini with an overheating problem that was caused by disk drive heat? o_O
     
  11. thermodynamic Suspended

    thermodynamic

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    USA
    #11
    How do you know it doesn't overheat? One person's definition might not be the same. Or the system isn't being stressed enough (and often enough) to see it.

    Personally, depending on cooling options and need, under full load, a processor should stay under 80C. The cooler the better, especially for more frequent usage - if one really wants their system to last or to resell to others, who are thinking the thing will last them more than a year... Without a sensor reader, nobody knows how hot the thing truly gets - or think anything is technically askew...
    --- Post Merged, Jan 10, 2016 ---
    Seconded!

    44C or whatever the HDD gets up to is negligable. Everyone makes data backups... The CPU (and GPU) are where the real concerns are at. Ambient head generated by a HDD, even in a small footprint like the Mini, is an excuse that only goes so far. The CPU won't get below the internal case's ambient temperature unless it's liquid cooled, but 44 is peanuts either way and most CPUs run idle at 40~400 (especially in notebooks with their smaller form factors to begin with).
     
  12. phrehdd macrumors 68040

    phrehdd

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2008
    #12
    CPUs can get heated under various tasks, 2 drives vs 1 drive requires more fan usage. This is not simply drives heating up but a matter of two simple things - more items heat internally heating up (either self generated or in close proximity of another item that is hot) and the amount of air flow. Single drive units tend to require less high fan than often 2 drive units. Then there are Minis with just on board graphics vs discrete graphic chipsets and the list goes on. I'll skip the entirety of what it takes to cool down smaller volumes than larger volumes as that hopefully is fairly well understood.
     
  13. D.T. macrumors 603

    D.T.

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2011
    Location:
    Vilano Beach, FL
    #13
    Due to the extra hassle of removing the logic board, I wouldn't worry about mounting a 2nd drive internally. I have a 2nd 500GB HDD and the only reason is I +left+ in place when I swapped out the 1st HDD in the lower bay (for an SSD), since my machine was a server model and came with 2x500GB drives factory installed.

    I'd take the money for a 2nd drive kit and buy a nice external enclosure for the OEM drive (USB 3.0), it'll be handy for archives, "slow media", and convenient since it's easily moved to another machine. You can mount the SSD, move the OEM HDD and use Disk Util to transfer the entire OS over to the new machine (or mount the SSD externally first).
     
  14. datars macrumors newbie

    datars

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2015
    Location:
    San Francisco Bay Area
    #14
    Cool! If you have the fusion drive, you really don't need SSD. But the fusion drive will only let you have two partition.

    I pick-up my Mac Mini 6,2 i7-3720QM, 4GB Ram, 1 TB "Fusion Drive" which combines 128 GB of flash storage. My boot-up takes only 9sec. I grab 16GB of RAM on NewEgg for $62. I paid $500 out the door for the Mini
    Right now I’m looking at putting a Blu Ray Burner in my old Mac Mini 2010. I did install a 480 SSD but could not get any OS X to install, so I put-in a WD Black 500GB drive
     
  15. ColdCase macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2008
    Location:
    NH
    #15
    HDMI splitters are common, but they split one video streams into 2, 4, 8.

    As far as storage, you will be much happier with TB storage (no quirks, they just work). Why do you think you need RAID? Put your money into drive capacity instead. Use a "dumb" enclosure with disc utility to RAID0 if you need a large volume or RAID1 if you must have redundancy. The drive set can be read by any mac, where a proprietary HW RAID no so much. For home media purposes, its sufficient to have one working drive and a backup for it. No need for fancy RAID redundancy as you don't need performance, you don't need the hassle, you don't need the recovery time performance impact, you don't need the drive constraints.
     
  16. Celerondon macrumors 6502a

    Celerondon

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2013
    Location:
    Southern Cal
    #16
    Yes, drive constraints are another issue to consider. I figure that the HDDs should be similar if not matched and that certain green or otherwise sleepy drives would be a RAID no-no. :(

    ColdCase I have a GoFlex Home connected to my router for TimeMachine and network storage. It works fine. I tried wireless backup and that seemed slow and scary. I like the fact that the ethernet connection does not occupy a valuable USB 3.0 port.

    I am considering an expansion of my connected storage. Do you have any recommendations for dumb TB enclosures? With a 2012 mini, I don't need TB 2 but I tend to purchase newer hardware if the difference is not too great.
     

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