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Mini va new iMac

dwd3885

macrumors 68020
Original poster
Dec 10, 2004
2,121
118
i have used an iMac since 2009 24” models. I’m in the market for a new desktop and am deciding between the new Minis or iMacs.

My main use is photo editing my kids photos and light video editing. I video edit for my career but not really on my home computer. Mainly just need a big screen hub type computer for when my iPad Pro isn’t capable.

I was looking at either the iMac w/ssd for 2k or getting a Mini and an external display.
 

shaunp

Cancelled
Nov 5, 2010
1,811
1,395
iMac. There's a big difference in GPU performance between the two - which you will need - and by the time you've added an external GPU, and a decent monitor you are at around the same price of an iMac. The iMac will perform better though because of the inefficiencies of running an external GPU on the mini - there are youtube videos showing this.
 
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dtmoy

macrumors newbie
Nov 30, 2018
9
7
iMac. There's a big difference in GPU performance between the two - which you will need - and by the time you've added an external GPU, and a decent monitor you are at around the same price of an iMac. The iMac will perform better though because of the inefficiencies of running an external GPU on the mini - there are youtube videos showing this.
[doublepost=1553181423][/doublepost]I just ordered an i7 mini for basically the same purposes as the OP. Now I am having second thoughts. I ordered with 1 tb ssd and 8 gigs ram but plan to add more. Will the GPU be that noticeable with light video editing? Also, if I keep it, any recommendations for a monitor for above purposes? Is 4k overkill?

Thanks!
 
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smarterbits

macrumors newbie
Mar 13, 2019
10
7
Montreal
[doublepost=1553181423][/doublepost]I just ordered an i7 mini for basically the same purposes as the OP. Now I am having second thoughts. I ordered with 1 tb ssd and 8 gigs ram but plan to add more. Will the GPU be that noticeable with light video editing? Also, if I keep it, any recommendations for a monitor for above purposes? Is 4k overkill?

Thanks!

For both yours and OP's describe usage, the six-core Mini is plenty enough. I use a 2018 QC TouchBar 13-MBP for work in a way more intense workload with no issues. Yes the GPU is weaker, but for light video and photo editing it is more than OK.

Look at it this way perhaps:

- If you'd like more headroom to add more GPU intensive tasks in the future, or are worried about future GPU power creep on the GPU intensive apps you use today, you might feel more at ease with iMac from the get go. But again, you have the option to go with an eGPU down the line.

- Price out your mini + desired display. If the pricing is within a couple hundred dollars, the iMac might be a better choice, especially if option for the 27-inch as there is basically no equivalent external 5K display available.

- OP has been happy with iMac for years, but some people do prefer mini + external display for repairability and upgrades. iMac display is locked in.
 
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dtmoy

macrumors newbie
Nov 30, 2018
9
7
For both yours and OP's describe usage, the six-core Mini is plenty enough. I use a 2018 QC TouchBar 13-MBP for work in a way more intense workload with no issues. Yes the GPU is weaker, but for light video and photo editing it is more than OK.

Look at it this way perhaps:

- If you'd like more headroom to add more GPU intensive tasks in the future, or are worried about future GPU power creep on the GPU intensive apps you use today, you might feel more at ease with iMac from the get go. But again, you have the option to go with an eGPU down the line.

- Price out your mini + desired display. If the pricing is within a couple hundred dollars, the iMac might be a better choice, especially if option for the 27-inch as there is basically no equivalent external 5K display available.

- OP has been happy with iMac for years, but some people do prefer mini + external display for repairability and upgrades. iMac display is locked in.
[doublepost=1553185724][/doublepost]Thanks for your reply. I had the lampshade iMac and more recently the 2011 27" iMac. I spec'd out the new 27" and I would be well over $3,000. Was disappointed in just a refresh so I decided mini. Just need to pair it with a suitable monitor.
 
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BigBoy2018

Suspended
Oct 23, 2018
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1,822
iMac. There's a big difference in GPU performance between the two - which you will need - and by the time you've added an external GPU, and a decent monitor you are at around the same price of an iMac. The iMac will perform better though because of the inefficiencies of running an external GPU on the mini - there are youtube videos showing this.

This ... was your best answer.
 
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dwd3885

macrumors 68020
Original poster
Dec 10, 2004
2,121
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Thanks for the advice guys. I ordered the new 27” iMac w/512GB SSD. Can’t wait to get it. When I priced out a similar Mac Mini and monitor it was saving a few hundred bucks but not as powerful
 
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Morgenland

macrumors 6502a
May 28, 2009
902
877
Europe
[doublepost=1553185724][/doublepost]Thanks for your reply. I had the lampshade iMac and more recently the 2011 27" iMac. I spec'd out the new 27" and I would be well over $3,000. Was disappointed in just a refresh so I decided mini. Just need to pair it with a suitable monitor.
Same purposes. I am waiting for Apples new Monitor. Only then will I renew my old Mini. I don't like other Brands and their ugly design on my desk. At the moment I use the old but nice Cinema Display. But I need 4K resolution (photo), 24 inch and preferably Auto-Log in with Face-ID. I think Apple is working on it.
This display then works again for the next 15 years for all minis, which I then update without always having to spend money on a new integrated monitor.
 
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shaunp

Cancelled
Nov 5, 2010
1,811
1,395
[doublepost=1553181423][/doublepost]I just ordered an i7 mini for basically the same purposes as the OP. Now I am having second thoughts. I ordered with 1 tb ssd and 8 gigs ram but plan to add more. Will the GPU be that noticeable with light video editing? Also, if I keep it, any recommendations for a monitor for above purposes? Is 4k overkill?

Thanks!

You are talking about light video editing and 4K in the same post. Something there tells me you will be disappointed with the graphics performance of the Mini. I'd just get an iMac. If you do stick with the Mini however, I'd look at Dell, Asus or BenQ for 4k monitors. Obviously read the reviews and look at what you are wanting in the monitor - there is a lot more to it than just the 4k resolution.
 
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dtmoy

macrumors newbie
Nov 30, 2018
9
7
You are talking about light video editing and 4K in the same post. Something there tells me you will be disappointed with the graphics performance of the Mini. I'd just get an iMac. If you do stick with the Mini however, I'd look at Dell, Asus or BenQ for 4k monitors. Obviously read the reviews and look at what you are wanting in the monitor - there is a lot more to it than just the 4k resolution.

Currently I do not do any 4k video but may in the future. Thus, looking at 4k monitors to future proof. I have read countless posts of opinions of monitors to use with the mini but it just confuses me more. I have ordered the mini but may try to cancel...
 
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shaunp

Cancelled
Nov 5, 2010
1,811
1,395
You need to consider not just the monitor, but the capabilities of the computer too, especially the GPU. This is where the mini is lacking. It will be fine to display a 4K image of say web pages, etc, but as soon as you start editing video you will see the limitations. At this point you will look at external video cards which by the time you've bought one of those and the enclosure together with your mini and the 4K monitor you might as well have bought a 5K iMac.

The mini is only a good idea if you are at the low end and already have a monitor, etc. As soon as you start increasing the spec and adding 4K monitors it doesn't make financial sense compared to the iMac. And this is coming from someone on a PC who hates the iMac and all in one computers in general.
 
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dtmoy

macrumors newbie
Nov 30, 2018
9
7
You need to consider not just the monitor, but the capabilities of the computer too, especially the GPU. This is where the mini is lacking. It will be fine to display a 4K image of say web pages, etc, but as soon as you start editing video you will see the limitations. At this point you will look at external video cards which by the time you've bought one of those and the enclosure together with your mini and the 4K monitor you might as well have bought a 5K iMac.

The mini is only a good idea if you are at the low end and already have a monitor, etc. As soon as you start increasing the spec and adding 4K monitors it doesn't make financial sense compared to the iMac. And this is coming from someone on a PC who hates the iMac and all in one computers in general.

Thanks...I have cancelled the mini order and will wait for the iMac. I don't want to have to spend another $1K on an eGPU for video.
 
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smarterbits

macrumors newbie
Mar 13, 2019
10
7
Montreal
Currently I do not do any 4k video but may in the future. Thus, looking at 4k monitors to future proof. I have read countless posts of opinions of monitors to use with the mini but it just confuses me more. I have ordered the mini but may try to cancel...

Here's some articles divining into the mini for video editing. You might end up sticking with the iMac, but maybe they'll provide some insight.

https://larryjordan.com/articles/hands-on-video-editing-with-final-cut-pro-x-and-the-mac-mini/
https://jonnyelwyn.co.uk/film-and-video-editing/using-the-2018-mac-mini-for-video-editing/
https://5thingsseries.com/blackmagi...-pro-davinci-resolve-and-avid-media-composer/
 
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ignatius345

macrumors 68040
Aug 20, 2015
3,014
4,011
Thanks for the advice guys. I ordered the new 27” iMac w/512GB SSD. Can’t wait to get it. When I priced out a similar Mac Mini and monitor it was saving a few hundred bucks but not as powerful
The iMac monitors are gorgeous, too -- I'm not sure what 5K stand-alone monitors are available, but I think they're pretty darn expensive?
 
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coldsweat

macrumors 6502
Aug 18, 2009
321
263
Grimsby, UK
Currently I do not do any 4k video but may in the future. Thus, looking at 4k monitors to future proof. I have read countless posts of opinions of monitors to use with the mini but it just confuses me more. I have ordered the mini but may try to cancel...
I've moved from a 2017 imac (4.2 i7/580 graphics) to an i7 Mini recently & I will say that for basic HD video you can easily get away with the in built graphics, however for editing 4k you will need an eGPU as playback in FCPX can get choppy.
 
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