Mac mini-maximizing Mac mini performance

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by kalvinhui, Jun 3, 2009.

  1. kalvinhui macrumors newbie

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    Jun 3, 2009
    #1
    should i go for a 2.26GHz + 4GB ram mac mini for photoshop, illustration works, some video editing and my 3d studio Max the most. DOES 2.0 & 2.26Ghz really tell the different when im doing the rendering on my 3d max? a prompt prompt reply is very much appreciated. thank you~~~
     
  2. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

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    #2
    0.26GHz isn't noticeable difference. 2.0GHz will be fine. Spend money on RAM upgrade and hard drive (7200rpm or SSD from 3rd party). If you're fine doing little surgery on your Mac Mini, buy 3rd party RAM and HD, they are much cheaper.
     
  3. Spanky Deluxe macrumors 601

    Spanky Deluxe

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    #3
    Get the base spec Mac Mini, upgrade the CPU to 2.26GHz and then buy yourself 4GB of RAM from a third party such as Crucial and get a 7200rpm drive from a third party as well. Install them yourself. You'll likely spend roughly the same to get 4GB of RAM + 500GB 7200rpm drive as it would cost you to get 4GB RAM directly from Apple.

    Like Hellhammer said, 0.26GHz probably wouldn't be that noticeable but if you're trying to max it out then by all means go for it. Of course, true maxxing out would be to get 4GB of RAM and then a 160GB Intel x25-m SSD drive - but then the hard drive would cost nearly the same as the rest of the machine put together.
     
  4. kalvinhui thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #4
    Thank you Hellhammer and Spanky,

    im still a student and i could get the student discounts and i use 3dMax for most of the time and that makes me really concern on the speed especially when the 3d is being rendered. i dont want to take the risk to install the RAM by myself as it would be my 1st Mac..but i dont mind to learn if there is a website to show ..lol.


    i just read this
    http://www.macworld.com/article/50321/2006/04/xpbenchmarks.html and they were saying a 3d studio max will not run on a bootcamp system. is that true? has anyone encountered the same problem?
     
  5. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

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    #5
    Youtube... Here is link for RAM upgrade and here is link for hard drive upgrade for 2009 Mac Mini.
     
  6. kalvinhui thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #6
    Thank you Hellhammer~:p
     
  7. Spanky Deluxe macrumors 601

    Spanky Deluxe

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    #7
    Its easy, don't worry. Just follow a guide and you'll do fine. Keep the original RAM safe somewhere so that you can switch it back in case you need to have Apple look at it and either do the same with the hard drive or simply put it in an external case. Apple is meant to honour the warranty even if you replace the hard drive and RAM but in practice, its far far easier to just switch it back in such an event.
     
  8. darrellishere macrumors 6502

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    Jul 13, 2007
    #8
    be carful opening the mac mini, still give me nightmares!

    Scratch my new baby up so much that it doesn't feel like new anymore.

    Do not use a metal putty knife! Use plastic!

    Definitely not for the faint hearted.

    But once you get it open its plain sailing.

    Shame the graphics are still below par for a desktop.
     
  9. Spanky Deluxe macrumors 601

    Spanky Deluxe

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    #9
    The graphics are better than any other desktop computer that's so small.

    Use a bank or store card with no raised bits. I used a metal putty knife in combination with some bank cards and it's spotless.
     
  10. kalvinhui thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #10
    it seems to be very easy to DIY! thank you for providing all the helpful info, i have just bookmarked the link and will do it when i got my Mac, but again,can a 3dmax run on a bootcamp?
     
  11. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

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    #11
    Yes it should work through BootCamp. Here is a thread about it!
     
  12. chuxdaddy macrumors member

    chuxdaddy

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    #12
    If you have the time check out
    http://eshop.macsales.com/shop/apple/memory/Mini_Intel_Memory_Benchmarks

    they have test for both the 2.0 and the 2.26 cpu. I went for the base $599 mini. I bought 4 GB of ram and had it installed by best buy, who are authorized by apple, cost me 29.95 to have ram installed. soon i will upgrade the hard drive to a faster speed and will still cost less than the $799 mini.

    just my 2 cents.
     
  13. opeter macrumors 65816

    opeter

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    #13
    You said you use 3DMax...

    for the same money as the Mac mini, you could get a decent PC with Core 2 Duo od Quad CPUs (8xxx series) with 1333 MHz FSB or even an Phenom II X4 810-820 etc, min. 4 GB of cheap DDR2 RAM and a license for Windows Vista Home Premium.

    A much better value for money.
     
  14. Spanky Deluxe macrumors 601

    Spanky Deluxe

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    #14
    But he obviously wants OS X, a hardware warranty for the whole system and all in a very compact package. Find a way to build a system like you say in the same form factor or smaller than the mac mini and you may be onto something. Maybe.
     
  15. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

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    #15
    But then he have to use Windows which sucks. We don't know can OP even build computers so if he can't it'll cost ~$100 more for a store to build it.

    Custom PCs are great for gaming and such things but it's useless to build low specced PC. And does the OP even need so much power?
     
  16. opeter macrumors 65816

    opeter

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    #16
    Does he not?

    In the same form factor? Fujitsu-Siemens and AOpen had some boxes in similar form-factor like the mini.
    But I would go for an micro-ATX minitower. Where he would get min. 3x 3,5" bays for HDDs, 2 x 5,25" for DVD-RW/BlueRay etc.

    Much more ugpradable. With the mini you need outer HDD cases, etc. And we didn't even mention the clutter from different cables if you connet all these stuff to your mini ...
     
  17. Spanky Deluxe macrumors 601

    Spanky Deluxe

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    #17
    So, you can't show me a machine with specs superior to the mini in the same kind of form factor then?

    You're kind of on the wrong forum here. Here we discuss primarily Macs, which gives the site its name, "Mac Rumors". The fact the OP is posting on this forum instead of a specialist PC or Windows forum implies that it is a Mac he's after. It sounds like he doesn't want a big ugly PC on his desk and doesn't want to spend his time putting one together.

    One other aspect that you're completely forgetting is also the resale value. I sold a Mac Mini that originally cost £500 three years ago for £300 just a month or two ago. So, the machine cost about £70 a year to own. What do you think a PC would have cost me to own if I'd spent the same amount??
     
  18. opeter macrumors 65816

    opeter

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    #18
    No.

    Not that much. Maybe 1/3 of the original price.

    But why don't you think a bit more economical in the sense of price/performance?

    If the OP's primary application used every day will be 3D Studio Max and since there is no version for MacOS X (yet), he is maybe better with an "ugly PC box", don't you think?

    If he'll get a Mac mini, he will likely have to install Bootcamp and Windows, and reboot every time for working with 3DS so in terms of raw power, he can get more with a PC.

    BTW: He has to buy Windows anyway... if he want to legally use that stuff. And an academy version of 3DS.
     
  19. Spanky Deluxe macrumors 601

    Spanky Deluxe

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    #19
    Ok, the original Mac Mini 1.66GHz cost $799 in February 2006. Tom's Hardware produced a spec for $720 in June 2006. Lets say Tom's Hardware's machine was worth $799 at the time of the Mac Mini's release.

    Their processor was $122, now sells for ~$25 on eBay.
    Their motherboard was $82.90, now sells for ~$25 on eBay (although most went unsold).
    Their RAM cost $78.55, now sells for ~$10 (well, I only found one for $3.40 shipped but I'm being generous).
    Their Hard drives cost $132.98, now sell for combined $30.
    Their water cooler cost $129.99, now sells for $70 (although that was the only completed one I could find and is for a brand new, sealed unit).
    Their DVD burner cost $37, now sells for $10 (I'm guessing here because none have been sold recently).
    Their case cost $67.49, now sells for $20 (I'm guessing again, no sales).
    Their graphics card cost $66, now sells for $5 (Actually I found it for $1. If it had been AGP or 256MB then it would have claimed more but hey ho).

    So total resale value is $195, call it $200. The resale value of the Mac Mini is $300-$400, lets call it £350. That's a fair difference. Chances are the PC's would have been even less too because the water cooler's price is not going to be anything near the cost of a brand new never been used one and I've been quite generous here. Not to mention, if you were selling all the parts seperately, you'd probably pay more eBay fees than on just one Mac Mini. They also didn't even add the cost of an operating system.
     
  20. kalvinhui thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jun 3, 2009
    #20
    I can smell a little bit of gunpowder…..

    Yes, Opeter is right, with the same price I can have a better PC performance thn a mini. But that would properly a bulky 1. Even my professor suggested me to go for a mac if you very into a photo editing or graphic/illustration.

    Yes, agreed with spanky’s! I’ve been using windows for almost 15years with at least 8computers I have already changed. And I have done most surgery by myself/friends.I found that the WIN has encountered me nightmares like VIRUSESsss, software crashing down and stuff like that maybe or because I do regular downloads…..

    Of course, my PC will still be with me even if I own myself a Mac, I just want to explore how great/neat a MAC can be and most of my ex- colleagues they use Mac and it runs smooth and stable if u compare with the WIN. And the mac is serious beauty inside out. And some preinstalled software like iphoto is very cool.Hopefully I can find the best of Mac.

    For the 3dmax, I have just checked with autodesk and they say a max is fully compatible with a mac(no worries on that)

    :D:D
     
  21. Spanky Deluxe macrumors 601

    Spanky Deluxe

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    #21
    Ah so you're a new switcher eh? My first new Mac was a Mac Mini. I had a custom built massively powerful PC, dual 6800 graphics cards in SLI, Athlon X2, it was even cooled with a phase change system running at ~-40 degrees under load. Then I got hold of a eMac logic board. Hacked it together with a power supply and ran it and my PC through a KVM switch. The £50 eMac hacktogether ended up becoming my main computer, even though the PC was worth something like 20 times as much (this was 2005). When the first Intel Mac Minis came out, I replaced my frankenmac with that. Now the PC just sat off for most of the time because it bugged me how loud it was. Six months later, I sold the Mac Mini, sold the PC's bits, sold my beast of a Dell laptop and bought a Mac Pro, second hand iBook G4 and a 30" ACD. I've never looked back since!
     
  22. arcadeforest macrumors member

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    Feb 25, 2008
    #22
    Can't argue here, this is the way to go.
     
  23. darrellishere macrumors 6502

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    #23
     
  24. Spanky Deluxe macrumors 601

    Spanky Deluxe

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    #24
     
  25. MrSEC macrumors regular

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    Apr 17, 2008
    #25
    http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage.jsp?skuId=9180628&type=product&id=1218046802510

    The one that a linked to above is a power house for it's size,but it's not as pretty as the Mac Mini,and runs around 999.99.and like whats already been said,you're stuck with Vista 64 bit.

    WOW that thing has some amazing things in it like quad Core,esata,water cooled,but it DOES NOT have a WIRELESS CARD!!!What's up with that.
     

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