New mini owner, just bought another :)

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by marioman38, Feb 9, 2012.

  1. marioman38, Feb 9, 2012
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2012

    marioman38 macrumors 6502a


    Aug 8, 2006
    Elk Grove, CA
    Just got my mini and I LOVE IT! It replaces the 17"C2D MBP that I sold in March, 2010 to pay for a car repair. I've been iPad only the past 2 years! I ordered my dad the base mini, which I will be setting up for him in a few minutes.

    Anywho, here are some brief benchmarks I did of Halo UB:

    1280x720 all HIGH, Lens Flare High, NO AA
    Average frame rate=167.79fps

    1920x1080 all HIGH, Lens Flare High, NO AA
    Average frame rate=96.87fps

    1920x1080 all HIGH, Lens Flare High, 4x AA
    2500MHz, 4096MB
    Total Time=88.19s
    Average frame rate=53.29fps
    Below 5fps= 1% (time) 0% (frames) (1.515s spent in 4 frames)
    Below 10fps= 1% (time) 0% (frames)
    Below 15fps= 6% (time) 1% (frames)
    Below 20fps= 11% (time) 2% (frames)
    Below 25fps= 11% (time) 3% (frames)
    Below 30fps= 19% (time) 6% (frames)
    Below 40fps= 37% (time) 18% (frames)
    Below 50fps= 50% (time) 28% (frames)
    Below 60fps= 62% (time) 41% (frames)
    ###Sound Options###
    Hardware Acceleration= No
    Sound Quality= High
    Environmental Sound= No
    Sound Variety= High
    ###Video Options###
    Resolution= 1920 x 1080
    Refresh rate= 0 Hz
    Framerate throttle= No Vsync
    Specular= Yes
    Shadows= Yes
    Decals= Yes
    Texture Quality= High

    Lightroom 3 runs smooth as butter, Halo 2 under windows 7 runs great (30-50fps) with every setting maxed, 4xAA 1920x1080.

    Mini specs in sig. Stock 2011 with 6630m.
  2. marioman38 thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Aug 8, 2006
    Elk Grove, CA
    More benchmarks incase anyone finds them interesting.

    Windows 7 Experience Rating

    Stock Mini 2.3ghz HD3000, 2GB Ram

    Processor 6.9
    Memory 5.5
    Graphics 5.8
    Gaming Graphics 6.3
    Hard Drive 5.7

    Stock Mini 2.5ghz 6630m, 4GB Ram

    Processor 7.1
    Memory 7.4
    Graphics 5.8
    Gaming Graphics 6.6
    Hard Drive 5.9

    Of note: Both tests were performed on a clean install of Windows 7. Both tests were performed twice, the numbers were the same both times.

    Interesting findings: The memory test of the 2.3ghz is surprisingly low, I assume because of the amount (2GB) and not the speed, as they both use 1333mhz ram.

    Hard Drive: Both mini's have the same toshiba 500gb 5400rpm hdd, windows is on a 50gb partition on both mini's. Not sure why the 2.5ghz is rated higher.

    Graphics: WHY is the rating of the HD3000 the SAME as the 6630m? Thats why I paid an extra 200 bucks!

    Gaming Graphics: The 6630m is only .3 higher than the HD3000, it can play Halo 2 at 1900x1080 High, 4xAA with 30-50fps, so it is not bad, Is the HD3000 not as bad as everyone makes it out to be?
  3. shortcut3d, Feb 9, 2012
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2012

    shortcut3d macrumors 65816

    Aug 24, 2011
    2011 Mac mini server 2.0GHz Quad-Core Intel i7
    8GB 1866MHz Kingston Hyper X
    240GB OCZ Vertex 3 MAX IOPS
    Windows 7 Professional 64-bit SP1

    Windows Experience Scores:
    Processor: 7.4
    Memory (RAM): 7.9
    Graphics: 6.3
    Gaming graphics: 6.3
    Primary hard disk: 7.9

    Geekbench 64-bit: 11622 (
    ATTO Diskbench: 559/514 MB/s read/write
    Handbrake Blu-ray Folder Encode Apple TV 2 Preset: 24fps average

    I achieved these marks by enabling AHCI in bootcamp and installing Intel's Rapid Storage Drivers. I also recommend installing the Broadcom WiFi and Gigabit drivers. Apple's bootcamp drivers are not the fastest or most stable.
  4. marioman38 thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Aug 8, 2006
    Elk Grove, CA
    Interesting that your graphics rating is higher with the HD3000 than the 6630m dedicated I have.

    That is some screaming fast RAM, and nice SSD.

    Just loaded up the 27,000 photos off my dads 2004 iMac and iPhoto 4 (circa 2004) to his mini, it HATES having 2GB ram, constant beach balls, apps not responding, and a gig of swap... I bought him a new computer to be FASTER... ugh, apple. *off to* :rolleyes:
  5. philipma1957 macrumors 603


    Apr 13, 2010
    Howell, New Jersey
    once again solid evidence the base mini needs 4g to 8gb ram

    If you buy the 8gb run the scores with a 4gb stick then with 2 4gb sticks. I have found that you can get away with 4gb but the machine is much better with 8gb, I use kingston hyperX plug n play 1600mhz works nicely in the base mini and or the server mini
    here is my ram
  6. marioman38 thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Aug 8, 2006
    Elk Grove, CA
    I just ordered 8gb for myself and will be giving my dad the 4gb in my mini. happened to send me an email with an excellent price on crucial 1333 ram. 35 bucks for 8GB

    Now I just need to figure out the mouse situation. I use a Logitech VX Nano, and wouldn't mind something a little larger, would LOVE the trackpad, but I do occasionally play an FPS. He has a "mighty" mouse, which has stopped scrolling in one direction. Looked at the Logitech VX Revolution, but no way I would pay 80 bucks for it. Maybe if it was 50.
  7. Silver Eagle macrumors newbie

    Apr 8, 2011

    You can use both the Trackpad, connected with Bluetooth, and wireless mouse at the same time. I have a Logitech VX Revolution mouse that I picked up in the clearance aisle of Walmart a while back and the Trackpad both hooked up to my Mini and I don't have any problems with conflicts between them. I prefer the Trackpad but my wife likes the mouse better because she sits at my desk so infrequently that she can't remember the gestures. I've just been keeping an eye out for a Bluetooth mouse as it would be nice to free up that USB port again.
  8. Turtletovar macrumors newbie

    Jul 17, 2011
    Just an FYI. I bought the exact same RAM kit from I installed it today and got the 3 beeps (RAM error). Swapped slots, still 3 beeps. So I then shutdown the computer (uncheck "Reopen windows when logging back in). I unplugged the Mini's power cord and let it sit for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, installed the Crucial kit and voila!! It started up normally. Ran the Apple Hardware test, normal and extended tests, and everything checks out.

    Just a heads up in case the same thing happens to you when you get your Crucial RAM.
  9. MJL macrumors 6502a

    Jun 25, 2011
  10. shortcut3d macrumors 65816

    Aug 24, 2011
    The 2011 Mac mini server idles at 40C in Windows 7. The 2011 Mac mini 2.7GHz Dual-Core Intel i7 idles at 54C - 60C. Those temps are for cores and ambient. I highly recommend setting Link Power Management to Maximum Savings in Windows 7 to lower idle temps.
  11. MJL macrumors 6502a

    Jun 25, 2011
    those figures are a bit deceiving hence that I want the pure CPU measurement at idle. The difference between server and the i5 2.5 Ghz is that the server has the fan running at 2300 and the other two (or three if you count the i7 duo as a third) models have the fan running at 1800 rpm.

    I am using MacFan_06 after bootup and set the minium fanspeed to 2200 (not as noisy as 2300) to keep the temprature below 65C when doing its job (low load). Me thinks (dangerous thing to do - think) that the GPU is taking more than most realise. In any case the i5 / i7 duo have the highest memory throughput which is what I am after. Am prepared to do a bit of sacrifice to get the temperature down.
  12. madridista59 macrumors regular

    May 19, 2010
    Houston, TX
    hello all. i just ordered my first base mini to be delivered on wednesday. needless to say, i'm extremely excited!

    i was wondering if you could help me out with a concern that i hadn't thought about before pulling the trigger. i have a 23" dell lcd and plan on picking up a 2nd 23". neither have hdmi input. can i purchase the mini displayport to dvi adapter to connect the 2nd monitor? i know it's a thunderbolt port on the mini, but on apple's site when you go through the purchase process, they give you the option to buy additional accessories and that mini>dvi happens to be one of them.

    thanks in advance for the helpful clarification!
  13. Osamede macrumors 6502a

    Oct 28, 2009
    is the fan usage/fan noise higher when operating the unit in Windows 7 than when in OSX?
  14. MJL, Feb 13, 2012
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2012

    MJL macrumors 6502a

    Jun 25, 2011

    Not that I've noticed but the temperatures are slightly higher due to the Apple bootcamp drivers not being as efficient as the OS X drivers.

    It took me a long time to find the differences in power consumption of the MC815 and MC816 ( 2.3 and 2.5 Ghz i5) and it is about 20%.


    edit: Apple themselves have the reports for all the computers but there was no separate rating for the above two.

    From this link it can be deduced that the 2011 Mac mni server and the i5 2.5 Ghz with discrete GPU have almost the same power consumption at idle. The difference in idle temperature is purely due to the fan speed which is 2300 for the server and 1800 for the i5. 1800 is for all purposes inaudible but 2300 is noticeable.
  15. shortcut3d macrumors 65816

    Aug 24, 2011
    The operating temps in Windows 7 is higher with Bootcamp drivers. However, I found that enabling AHCI, using Intel drivers and setting Link Power Management to Maximum Power Savings drops the temps. You lose Sleep and Suspend, but gain speed and lower idle temps.
  16. Snips macrumors regular

    Jan 9, 2008
    Suffolk, UK
    The tiny port on the mid-2011 Minis doubles as both the Thunderbolt port and the mini displayport, so yes, you should be able to use that adapter.

    Hope that helps.
  17. Osamede macrumors 6502a

    Oct 28, 2009
    Thanks. Been using Snow Leopard Server for the past year on and a half on the mid 2010 mini and an getting fed up with the OS, although the hardware is fine. All I need to to is just get stable file sharing on a home network, which seems to much to ask for some bizarre reason. Maybe I'll try throwing 2008 R2 server on the latest model and see how that goes. I've had my Squeezebox server on that on a separate machine and its been much more reliable. The sleep/suspend doesnt matter much.
  18. camardelle macrumors 6502

    Aug 17, 2011
    I am so jonesing for a mini. I have an iMac and MBP but would love to replace my last windows maching with a mini.
  19. marioman38 thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Aug 8, 2006
    Elk Grove, CA
    Yup, one will plug in with the included HDMI to DVI adapter, and the other will need a mini display port to DVI adapter where the mini display end will plug in to the Mac Mini's Thunderbolt port. Since you ordered the base mac mini, which uses shared video memory, I recommend upgrading your ram to at least 4gb, if not 8gb! I just bought 8gb crucial ram for 35 bucks, works like a charm! The reason being:

    1) Mac OS Lion likes RAM and 2GB is not enough for things such as iPhoto, Powerpoint, Safari etc. running more than one app simultaneous.

    2) Drawing more pixels (as you would powering 2 23" displays) requires more video memory. The HD3000 increases its memory with the more you have installed on your system.
    2GB=288MB vRam
    4GB=384MB vRam
    8GB=512MB vRam

    Therefore 8Gb would be a wise choice ESPECIALLY when powering multiple monitors. 4GB would be a very noticeable difference if its all you can manage.
  20. madridista59 macrumors regular

    May 19, 2010
    Houston, TX
    thanks Mario and Snips for your responses! i forgot i had already purchased a mini display>dvi for my air from monoprice a while back, so i'm using that right now.

    i've been lurking these threads for a while before buying my mini and decided to jump to 8gb. i bought the same crucial memory and both ram and mini arrived same day. i honestly can't tell the difference just yet though, but it's better to have it and not need it, then to not have it and need it! speaking about the 8gb :)

    again, thanks to you both for your helpful responses!
  21. Osamede macrumors 6502a

    Oct 28, 2009
    Thanks for this - I wasnt aware that they had different fan speeds. Makes big difference, as I'm looking to replace the 2010 Mac Mini Server that I have in my living room.
  22. Che Castro macrumors 603

    May 21, 2009
    I have 16gb or ram on mountain lion and sometimes I still see the spinning wheel from time to time
  23. gregorsamsa macrumors 6502a

    Apr 6, 2006
    (Metamorphosing near) Staffs, 51st State.
    The HD 6630M being discrete, is a much better card than the HD 3000. All benchmarks confirm this. Unfortunately, in the 2011 Mini it's greatly hampered by having only 256 VRAM. :rolleyes: Otherwise, it's a sound, low-powered mobile card. FWIW, I've got the same Mini.

    However, both the HD3000 & HD4000 integrated cards make use of up to 512 VRAM if you have 8 GBs RAM. This gives both Intel cards an extra boost for handling certain graphically-intensive tasks.
  24. fhall1 macrumors 68040


    Dec 18, 2007
    (Central) NY State of mind
    Actually the HD4000 can use up to 768MB of VRAM with an 8GB machine
  25. Omnius macrumors 6502a

    Jul 23, 2012
    Yeah for my purposes 8 was basically a requirement.

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