Mac Mini Questions re Handbrake/Make MKV/General Q's

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by superlatic, Jan 22, 2012.

  1. superlatic macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2007
    Location:
    Leeds, UK
    #1
    Hi Folks

    I currently have a fairly powerful windows 7 tower (core i7 950@ 3.07ghz, 6gb RAM, NVidia GTX 460 2GB). However, it is reaching the end of its warranty and am looking to downsize to a Mac Mini, primarily because
    - As a former iMac owner, I miss Mac OS X (although Windows 7 has been a fairly solid and stable OS)
    - Done nowhere near as much gaming as I envisaged
    - Want a computer that takes up much less physical space.

    As I don't really like the imacs (glossy screen/not a fan of all in one model), I was looking at the Mac Mini server model, and chances are I will hold off until the inevitable Ivy Bridge update, but have a few questions regarding the performance aspects of the Mini

    1) Make MKV/ Handbrake: The main use for the horsepower of my Windows tower at the moment is transcoding my blu ray library into digital copies, using Make MKV, and then Handbrake. Has anyone had any experience of transcoding with a mac mini? I imagine the dual core models may be a bit slow with blu rays but what about the quad core models? This would probably the most processor heavy task I would use it for.

    2) Facetime Camera: Could anybody recommend a half decent webcam that will work well with facetime for the mac mini? Currently have a Logitech C910 but have read a few reviews/comments on here about this not working all that well for macs?

    3) Video Playback: Most of my movies in digital format I encode at 720p. Could the mini handle playback of 1080p without any problems (moreso the ones with Intels integrated graphics)

    Any replies would be much appreciated, cheers
     
  2. simsaladimbamba

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
    Location:
    located
    #2
    I don't have experience about the first two question, but I presume, the quad-core Mac mini would be faster for transcoding via MakeMKV or Handbrake.

    Any current Mac can play back 1080p content (except maybe badly embedded Flash movies) encapsulated in the .mkv container.
    My 2007 iMac with a C2D 2 GHz CPU can play back 1080p content, either using H.264 as codec or an editing codec.
     
  3. superlatic thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2007
    Location:
    Leeds, UK
    #3
    Cheers for the response, as Ivy Bridge is meant to bring a considerable improvement in intels IGP also couldn't forsee any problems but just thought I would ask. My main concern is handbrake performance. I know its going to be slower than my current tower.
     
  4. philipma1957 macrumors 603

    philipma1957

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2010
    Location:
    Howell, New Jersey
    #4
    the quad core machine is fast at handbrake. I OWNED a mac pro quad core 2010 model with a 2.8 quad core. the 2011 server model is just about the same speed as it is. we have a thread that has a lot of scores on the handbrake question the quad core mini is fast. I OWN 2 OF THEM. Now it will ramp up the fans to do handbrake and be pretty loud when it does the job but it will do it quickly. IF you are in the usa amazon has the best price.

    http://www.amazon.com/Apple-MC936LL...CO64/ref=sr_1_5?ie=UTF8&qid=1327245665&sr=8-5

    no other mac mini comes close to the server for handbrake. sometimes apple has refurbished on sale here is the usa link.

    http://store.apple.com/us/product/FC936LL/A
     
  5. superlatic thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2007
    Location:
    Leeds, UK
    #5
    Thanks for this.

    Am currently based in the UK and I qualify for Apple's Higher Education discount, which for the mac mini I believe is around 12% plus a hefty discount for applecare.

    Re noise, it can't be any louder than my current tower, and that is with a copper heat sink and noise dampening case (Coolermaster Sileo 500).

    I am guessing when the ivy bridge models come out the mini server edition will get either the i7 3610QM (2.3ghz/45W TDP) or the i7 3612QM (2.1ghz/35W TDP).
     
  6. philipma1957 macrumors 603

    philipma1957

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2010
    Location:
    Howell, New Jersey
    #6
    yes the new 2012 edition should get one of those cpus both of which would be faster then the current quad core machine at handbrake.

    A second suggestion is get the server with the 2 x 750 gb hdd option. I went to the uk education store and the server with the standard 2 x 500gb option is

    798 BP and with the 2 x 750 gb hdd's it is 873.60 BP.

    the large hdds are quicker then the 500 gb ones and it is a decent bargain.

    (rare for apple)
     
  7. shortcut3d macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2011
    #7
    Handbrake typically does 24fps encoding Blu-ray folder to .m4v using the Apple TV 2 preset.
     

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