Mac Mini for some light Maya rendering?

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by wickedking94, Nov 9, 2012.

  1. wickedking94 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2010
    #1
    So I'm learning animation and my current computer:
    MacBook Pro Mid 2010
    Core 2 Duo 2.4Ghz dual core
    8 GB DDR3
    Geforce 320M 256 MB
    500 GB 7200 RPM HDD

    Isn't really up to it. Its taking entire days to make short 30 second animations. And the worst part is its so demanding I can't really use my MBP for anything else while its rendering. I'm pretty certain the bottleneck here is the C2D CPU. The GPU has no problems while I'm building the animations, rendering is the key issue here.
    Now being a student, my budget is very tight, so I can't afford an iMac or a Mac Pro. But I am considering one of the new Mac Mini's, since the latest refresh I can get one with a 2.6Ghz Quad Core i7. Since rendering is very CPU dependent, this should allow me to do some basic animation stuff much more efficiently. I would probably get the fusion drive as well (And max out the RAM myself since apple RAm is expensive.
    My concern with the Mac Mini is the Intel HD 4000 graphics. All the research I've done hasn't given me a clear answer if the HD 4000 is equal to the 320M or not. If it is then I'll know it can handle the building process of animations.

    So basically is the HD 4000 a decent graphics option (by decent I mean at least the same as the 320M I have now) or is it weaker then what I have now?
     
  2. wickedking94 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2010
  3. dasx macrumors 65816

    dasx

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2012
    Location:
    Barcelona
    #3
    Had your exact machine. Here you go a thread I created with some actual comparisons to the 2012 model. I just made tests of stuff I do of course, but I'm sure they'll be useful to you.

    As you can see, an incredible performance boost.
     
  4. wickedking94 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2010
    #4
    Thanks a ton for your reply! I do a lot of similar tasks with handbrake and video encoding stuff and seeing how the mini with the same specs as my MBP took 7 minutes to convert a video and the new fully loaded mini took a mere 1:40 to do the same task I'm thoroughly convinced that a Mini is an excellent computer to do my video and rendering stuff. I agree with what you say in the other thread, all those geekbench scores are meaningless if you want to know how fast a computer really is.

    Again, thank you, that thread is the most useful thing I've read about the performance of the new Mini.
     
  5. dasx macrumors 65816

    dasx

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2012
    Location:
    Barcelona
    #5
    No prob man!
    You'll see a huge difference. This Mini is a beast.

    And thanks! :)
     

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