Mac mini media server

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by carefree, Dec 19, 2015.

  1. carefree macrumors newbie

    Oct 6, 2015
    Evening all

    I currently have a home built Windows server but I am looking at downsizing to something smaller and I'm looking at a Mac mini as a possibility. Just looking for some advice really on using a Mac mini as a plex server and if people have had any issues with transcoding etc. As the mini won't have much in the way of storage I'm thinking of using the mini along side a new nas box which will hold all the media so I will use my current 4x 2tb drives in the new nas.

    If anyone has done something similar I'd really like to hear how it's going, going to have a look at the mini specs now to see which one would be best.

    Appreciate any help

    Thanks guys

  2. dgbarar macrumors 6502


    Feb 27, 2014
    Fountain Hills, AZ
    Hi Liam,

    I am doing just that. I have Plex running on a i5 1.4 GHz/4 GB mini as a media server running Plex. That said, I am only using it for music. Seems to work fine.

    What does not work is the iOS application for the iPhone as I am unable to to control the Mini direct what I want to play next through the receiver.

    Donald Barar
    Fountain Hills, AZ
  3. Xgm541 macrumors 65816

    May 3, 2011
    I use my mac mini for just this purpose. I have the 2012 i5 model which i bought base but upgraded to 16gb ram and a 960gb SSD/256gb SSD.

    It works quite well. I use the plex app on my iphone and watch shows as well as sync shows. When syncing, the mac mini becomes almost unresponsive due to transcoding, but I dont use it for anything else during the time.

    I have all my media stored on an NAS. Both devices are hooked up through ethernet.

    One thing I've encountered is plex stores temporary data on the main drive. Before i got my 960gb SSD I had to delete the plex cache frequently.

    The base new model at 1.4ghz should be enough but i'm not sure.
  4. Osamede macrumors 6502a

    Oct 28, 2009
    I have been running Plex for the whole house on a 2010 Mac Mini (C2D 2.66) for almost five years. You can do it with that machine, you can do with with even the base model 2014. Especially if you dont need storage on board. But personally I would do with with external hard drive connected by Thunderbolt or Firewire, as opposed to the NAS.
  5. Xgm541 macrumors 65816

    May 3, 2011
    NAS will add to the cost of the set up, for sure.

    I picked NAS because I have several services running on it that I wouldnt want to be interrupted if I needed to restart the mac, or if it broke down (surveillance, DNS, etc).
  6. LumbermanSVO macrumors 65816

    Mar 15, 2007
    Denton, TX
    I have a 2014 1.4/4Gb Mini running as my media server running iTunes for myself and Plex for the rest of the house. It works quite well. It is also does Time Machine backups for my laptops. I did swap the spinning drive for a SSD I had laying around, that REALLY sped up the UI on the rare occasion that I actually need/want to fiddle with it.
  7. carefree thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 6, 2015
    Thanks so much for all the help, got some thinking to do now. I have been looking at the synology 415 play Nas for storage but may well look into thunderbolt as suggested. I am also thiBaking about a microserver which would be much more cost efficient but I have to say I do like what the Mac mini has to offer. I would only go for the base model with the 8gb ram upgrade. As I wouldn't be using the mini for storage I would be more than happy to just stick in say a 256gm ssd but it's a shame that the 2014 models cannot be upgraded. I don't want to pay the apple price for an ssd upgrade before purchase

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