Late 2012 Mac Mini or Current

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by stromlance, Jun 6, 2017.

  1. stromlance macrumors newbie

    Jun 6, 2017
    Hello! This is my first post and it actually involves me getting into Apple products in the first place.

    Best Buy currently has the most recent Mac Mini with i5 2.6GHz, 8GB memory, and a 1TB hard drive for $599.99.

    At the same time, I can potentially get a Late 2012 Mac Mini from someone for the same price. It has the i7-3615QM, 16GB memory, and a 128GB SSD.

    On paper it looks to me like the Late 2012 is a far better deal, but I'd like to pick your brains and see if the various improvements to the models is worth giving up what I would be giving up for the Late 2012 model.
  2. teksurv macrumors regular

    May 25, 2008
    The 2012 is the better machine overall, depending on your use case. The "current" 2014 model will likely be supported a bit longer by Apple. I have a 2012 i7 quad and it is used as an iTunes and Plex server/handbrake transcoding.
  3. tibas92013 macrumors 6502

    Jun 2, 2013
    Costa Rica
    Sounds like one is new and the other MM(Late 2012) is used; if it meets your needs go with the new MM(Late 2014) in which you can also purchase Apple Care to cover you for two(2) more years
  4. Boyd01 macrumors 68040


    Feb 21, 2012
    New Jersey Pine Barrens
    I have a 2012 quad i7 2.6ghz mini server and love it. Perfect machine for my specific needs, it is dedicated to video and audio editing. But that might not be a good fit for you. Mine is about 1.5 times faster than the current top of the line 2014 Mini in terms of CPU, which is what matters most for me - makes a big difference rendering large video files.

    The 2014 Mini has much faster 802.11ac wifi (nice if you need it, but I use gigabit ethernet so I dont care). It also has a more recent video chip, the 2012 Mini uses the HD4000 chip which is getting pretty old. And the 2014 mini has two thunderbolt 2 ports while the 2012 has one thunderbolt port and one firewire 800 port. The firewire port is good for me, since I have legacy peripherals that can use it.

    And, of course, the 2014 Mini is new with a full warranty and applecare availability, so it may be a better choice if you plan to keep the system for a number of years.
  5. dandeco macrumors regular

    Dec 5, 2008
    I got the 2012 2.3 GHz quad-core Mac Mini with 16 GB of RAM, and it sure is fast and powerful, especially since I replaced the original stock hard drive with a 1 TB hybrid drive, which sped things up quite a bit.
    Some time after the current Mac Minis were announced in 2014(!) I had decided I'd be better off with a quad-core 2012 model. Then last February, I saw one being sold for $500 at a used electronics shop in Boston, with the RAM already maxed out, and so I just had to have it! (Especially since my mid-2009 MacBook was starting to show its' age more.) Worth every penny.
  6. Fishrrman macrumors G5


    Feb 20, 2009
    You don't want ANY Mini that has only a platter-based hard drive inside. You just don't.

    Let that advice guide you the most...
  7. tibas92013 macrumors 6502

    Jun 2, 2013
    Costa Rica

    Strongly 2nd Fishrrman's advice!
  8. dandeco macrumors regular

    Dec 5, 2008
    I only went with the hybrid drive in my Mac Mini because I was tight on money and I HAD to replace the stock hard drive in it, as it was starting to not work very well. So far, the startup time is quicker, along with opening apps.
  9. munakib macrumors 6502

    May 22, 2011
    Just recently bought a used yet mint 2012 Mac Mini (quad i7) for only $500 - upgraded ram to 16GB and switched the HDD to 1T SSD. Now this is a monster! DO NOT GET 2014 model.
  10. dogslobber macrumors 68030


    Oct 19, 2014
    Apple Campus, Cupertino CA
    Well a spinner in a Mini you can replace is okay. That's what I did, bought an SSD and put it in place of the spinner and tossed the spinner out of one of my Windows.
  11. epca12 macrumors regular

    Jun 11, 2017
    I would go for the 2012 unless you want thunderbolt 2
  12. MRrainer macrumors 6502a

    Aug 8, 2008
    Zurich, Switzerland
    2014 can do 2x2560x1600 (or 2x3440x1440, IIRC).
    2012 can only do 1x2560x1600 + 1920x1200 via HDMI.

    2014 has faster PCIe SSDs (well, not the one you think about buying).

    2012 has user-serviceable RAM and the hard drive can be replaced with an SSD. You can even add a 2nd SSD (both SATA only)

    I'd probably lean towards the 2012, given the right price.
    Add up all the upgrades you want to make and compare with a (used) iMac you could get for that money.

    What do you want to do with it, anyway?

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