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ajaan

macrumors regular
Original poster
Dec 15, 2013
139
69
Got a i3 / 32 GB 2018 Mac mini three weeks ago. I don't do anything that demanding on it, just a few pieces of software, nothing much running in the background. I never really do anything that taxes CPU or GPU, no video or photo work. Everything is low level in activity monitor.

I know this is very subjective, but it just feels sluggish and not snappy doing day to day stuff. Whether scrolling, typing, switching between apps, using the trackpad, swiping etc. Son is noticing it too (compared to his iMac). He describes it as 'laggy'.

To compare, we got a 2014 rMBP (4 GB), 2015 rMBP (16 GB), 2015 rMB, 2017 MBA, and a 2018 27-inch iMac. All are nice and snappy and feel faster in day-to-day use.

At the moment it doesn't feel like an upgrade -- any ideas? Kind of underwhelming.

Crossed my mind it could be the driving the monitor that's doing it: 4K 28-inch Samsung.
[doublepost=1557964374][/doublepost]Just to add,

I've got the 28-inch 4K scaled to maximum 'larger text'

And I just read this on another thread:

"I currently own a LG 27" 4k UK650 monitor and I'm wondering if by adding something like the gigabyte gaming box with RX 580 via thunderbolt 3 eGPU would help scale the LG UI to 1440 hiDPI without any lagging."
I don't fully understand this, but does changing the scaling to 'larger text' make the UI more laggy, and that's what I'm experiencing?
 

OldMike

macrumors 6502a
Mar 3, 2009
537
218
Dallas, TX
Have you checked what temperature your cpu is running at?

I just watched this video earlier today, and he had the same exact issues with an i3 Mini. He replaced the thermal paste on the cpu and it seemed to make a big difference.

If it seems like the issue and you don't feel like digging into the guts, perhaps you can see if you can swap it out with Apple.

 

Stephen.R

Suspended
Nov 2, 2018
4,356
4,746
Thailand
but does changing the scaling to 'larger text' make the UI more laggy,
It’s related to how macOS renders “usable” resolutions on HiDPI screens.

Try setting it to “default” scaling and see if the sluggishness goes away. I wouldn’t have thought that was likely given you have 32GB of RAM.
 

ajaan

macrumors regular
Original poster
Dec 15, 2013
139
69
It's on default scaling. All temps normal.

Figured it out. HDMI to HDMI on a 4K monitor is defaulting to 30 hz and can't be changed with this monitor or on the OS. Changing it to a USB-c to Display Port connection puts it at 60 hz.

That's got rid of the UI lag.
 

OldMike

macrumors 6502a
Mar 3, 2009
537
218
Dallas, TX
It's on default scaling. All temps normal.

Figured it out. HDMI to HDMI on a 4K monitor is defaulting to 30 hz and can't be changed with this monitor or on the OS. Changing it to a USB-c to Display Port connection puts it at 60 hz.

That's got rid of the UI lag.

That is good to hear. I'm curious now that you have found the issue, what you think of the i3 Mini. I was looking at picking one up - but the video I posted above kind of scared me off.
 

ajaan

macrumors regular
Original poster
Dec 15, 2013
139
69
That is good to hear. I'm curious now that you have found the issue, what you think of the i3 Mini. I was looking at picking one up - but the video I posted above kind of scared me off.

From what I understand it's a rebadged i5 from the 2017/18 iMac. It seems to the same chip as that in our 27-inch iMac.

Single core performance was more important to me than multicore, so the i5 and i7 seemed overkill.

Almost all of the time, the CPU is at at 3-10%. Just doesn't get stressed. I'm happy with it. I guess it depends what you do.

I'm mainly working with databases, PDFs, text-based files, tabs etc. Usually have loads of windows, files, tabs open, so RAM was more important at 32 GB, I start to swap at 16 GB.

Friend is an editor with a dual screen set up. He's got an i3 / 16GB, working with design files and copy for editing he's happy too.
[doublepost=1558009461][/doublepost]BTW. I had my 16 year old son put the 32 GB RAM in, buying it from crucial on Amazon, and saving almost £400 over BTO on Apple. He did it in 25 minutes and found it simple to do, except two screws on the logic board were tight and we had to hold the screw driver with pliers to turn it.
 

WC7

macrumors 6502
Dec 13, 2018
320
261
I am happy with the base model i3 mini ... I am just running it with a 1080p 24 inch monitor. In fact, I have purchased an i3 mini for each family member! Now, I'm up to 4 minis. One mini has a 27 inch 4k monitor attached, another is running with a 40 inch TV monitor (and an Apple TV, too), another is with two monitors at work, and my most recent i3 mini has the aforementioned 1080p monitor.
[doublepost=1558221596][/doublepost]My mind is slower than any lag with the i3 minis.
 

harriska2

macrumors 68000
Mar 16, 2011
1,921
1,048
Oregon
Have you checked what temperature your cpu is running at?

I just watched this video earlier today, and he had the same exact issues with an i3 Mini. He replaced the thermal paste on the cpu and it seemed to make a big difference.

If it seems like the issue and you don't feel like digging into the guts, perhaps you can see if you can swap it out with Apple.

Thanks for that. Mine is now generally above 98 and I’ve seen a couple cores hit 120-130 regularly. When I upgrade the memory we’ll redo the thermal paste. Is there a good brand?
 
Last edited:

ajaan

macrumors regular
Original poster
Dec 15, 2013
139
69
Thanks for that. Mine is now generally above 98 and I’ve seen a couple cores hit 120-130 regularly. When I upgrade the memory we’ll redo the thermal paste. Is there a good brand?

It seems so variable. Mine was low 40s according to iStat, and always feels cool to the touch.

Clearly, the single 4K monitor in my case. While things somewhat improved when I used USB-c to DP running at 60 hz, the UI was still sluggish.

I've now got two 27-inch 1080p monitors running off the mini, and things are fast and instant. The UI is snappy. It's a pleasure to use again.

I would like to try the new 24-inch 4k Ultrafine from LG on the Apple Store to see how that performs.
 

harriska2

macrumors 68000
Mar 16, 2011
1,921
1,048
Oregon
It seems so variable. Mine was low 40s according to iStat, and always feels cool to the touch.

Clearly, the single 4K monitor in my case. While things somewhat improved when I used USB-c to DP running at 60 hz, the UI was still sluggish.

I've now got two 27-inch 1080p monitors running off the mini, and things are fast and instant. The UI is snappy. It's a pleasure to use again.

I would like to try the new 24-inch 4k Ultrafine from LG on the Apple Store to see how that performs.
I also have a 4k monitor but I swore it is set to 60hz with 4-4-4 setting (40” Samsung). It can’t run youtube videos with a whole lotta halting. It used to run youtube at first just fine. 6 months later, not so much. I’m on hdmi to hdmi.
 

ajaan

macrumors regular
Original poster
Dec 15, 2013
139
69
I also have a 4k monitor but I swore it is set to 60hz with 4-4-4 setting (40” Samsung). It can’t run youtube videos with a whole lotta halting. It used to run youtube at first just fine. 6 months later, not so much. I’m on hdmi to hdmi.


You might want to check in the menu of the monitor. My Samsung 4K kept defaulting to 30hz on HDMI to HDMI, only running at 60hz when I switched to usb-c - DP.
 

harriska2

macrumors 68000
Mar 16, 2011
1,921
1,048
Oregon
You might want to check in the menu of the monitor. My Samsung 4K kept defaulting to 30hz on HDMI to HDMI, only running at 60hz when I switched to usb-c - DP.
Unfortunately my samsung only has hdmi. Unless you can convert hdmi to dp. But then I lose sound.
 

opeter

macrumors 68030
Aug 5, 2007
2,684
1,606
Slovenia
From what I understand it's a rebadged i5 from the 2017/18 iMac. It seems to the same chip as that in our 27-inch iMac.

Yes, the Core i3-8100B 3.6 GHz is in very similar to a i5-7600 (3.5 GHz), just on a new socket.
http://www.cpu-world.com/Compare/415/Intel_Core_i3_i3-8100_vs_Intel_Core_i5_i5-7600.html
https://cpu.userbenchmark.com/Compare/Intel-Core-i5-7600-vs-Intel-Core-i3-8100/3890vs3942

One of the big differences is, that the i5 has TurboBoost, with the i3 does not.
[doublepost=1558948788][/doublepost]
I found the information about the B variant ... which matches the CPU that Apple uses in the Mac mini. It is a B variant of the 8100.

https://ark.intel.com/content/www/u...ore-i3-8100b-processor-4m-cache-3-60-ghz.html

Interesting ... this CPU is categorized as a mobile CPU, but with 65 W TDP?

https://i.imgur.com/Qxbrh6c.jpg
 

WC7

macrumors 6502
Dec 13, 2018
320
261
Yes, the Core i3-8100B 3.6 GHz is in very similar to a i5-7600 (3.5 GHz), just on a new socket.
http://www.cpu-world.com/Compare/415/Intel_Core_i3_i3-8100_vs_Intel_Core_i5_i5-7600.html
https://cpu.userbenchmark.com/Compare/Intel-Core-i5-7600-vs-Intel-Core-i3-8100/3890vs3942

One of the big differences is, that the i5 has TurboBoost, with the i3 does not.
[doublepost=1558948788][/doublepost]

Interesting ... this CPU is categorized as a mobile CPU, but with 65 W TDP?

https://i.imgur.com/Qxbrh6c.jpg

That's interesting. Sounds pretty 'hot' for a mobile! Haha. Apparently, it has little to do with the TDP. Maybe it is the mounting? BGA?
 
Last edited:

opeter

macrumors 68030
Aug 5, 2007
2,684
1,606
Slovenia
I don't think, this is a mobile chip. It has the same characteristics as a desktop class CPU.

This is the "original" Core i3-8100 CPU:
SDOHmCG.jpg
 

Hessel89

macrumors 6502a
Sep 27, 2017
591
328
Netherlands
It's on default scaling. All temps normal.

Figured it out. HDMI to HDMI on a 4K monitor is defaulting to 30 hz and can't be changed with this monitor or on the OS. Changing it to a USB-c to Display Port connection puts it at 60 hz.

That's got rid of the UI lag.

you can also get an HDMI 2.0 cable. HDMI 2.0 allows for 4K at 60hz
 
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