People upgrading to a 2018 Mac Mini from a MacBook Pro

mightyjabba

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Sep 25, 2014
1,303
73
Tatooine
I'm mostly talking about people who use their MacBook Pros as desktop machines, but I thought it might be interesting to have a thread for anyone making this jump.

I currently use a 2014 MacBook Pro 15" as a desktop in clamshell mode connected to three monitors, an external keyboard and mouse, and way too many external hard disks. It's still a pretty good machine, but it does occasionally choke when editing 1080p video in Final Cut X, and 4k video is totally out of the question. While I could continue using it for a while longer, given Apple's upgrade cycle, I was thinking that this might be a good time to go ahead and switch to the Mac mini.

Just going by Geekbench scores and people's impressions, it sounds like anything but the i3 base model of Mac Mini would be a significant performance upgrade, but I was wondering if people had any thoughts about this. I especially want to avoid going through the trouble and expense of buying a new machine only to find out that it's worse than what I have in some way. (I'm aware that the mini lacks a dedicated graphics card, but I'm not sure that it will affect my usage much. Would it be a problem for Final Cut?)

I'm considering the i5 model with either 16 or 32GB of RAM and either 512GB or 1TB SSD.
 

StoneJack

macrumors 65816
Dec 19, 2009
1,074
358
If you want good FCPX machine, why not buy iMac. That will be much better with Radeon graphics.
 

JappleUser25

macrumors newbie
Nov 8, 2017
2
8
I'm working on a 1080p project on a 2016 (non-touchbar) i7 15" MBP. Running FCPX in Mojave. This MBP is ok as far as performance, but when my workflow moves to 4K I will definitely need something with more horsepower. The mobile M370X Radeon mobile graphics don't have the horsepower for 4K, everything would have to be proxy footage.

So far, there seems to be a gap in comparison/reviews of the 2018 i7 Mac Mini vs 2018 15" MPB i9, as far as FCPX workflow. There seems to be plenty of talk about the 13" MBP vs i3 Mini, which I don't care about and would never buy for FCPX.

But since I'll be bringing my own monitor&keyboard, I'm interested in the i7 Mini and it's potential. I'd also like to see what the Blackmagic eGPU Pro brings to the table with an i7 Mini. Sure it's expensive, but I'd like to see how it works for people doing video before making any kind of move.

Maybe I just have to give it another week or two and let these items proliferate out into the wild and see what users report.
 
  • Like
Reactions: ElectronGuru

mightyjabba

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Sep 25, 2014
1,303
73
Tatooine
If you want good FCPX machine, why not buy iMac. That will be much better with Radeon graphics.
Sorry I missed your comment originally. I've had a couple of iMacs in the past, but I don't want one now for a few reasons. I guess the main reason is that I've already got a three-monitor setup on my desk that I like pretty well, and I don't know how a computer with a built-in display would fit in there. But also the iMacs haven't been updated in long enough that I don't want to buy the ones that are currently available. I'm not editing video 90% of the time, so I don't really want to make my decision completely based on video editing, but I also don't want to go through the expense and trouble of upgrading computers just to make a lateral move in terms of video editing performance.

Right now I've got my finger on the trigger for the i7 mini with 16GB of RAM and a 512GB SSD. (I thought maybe I could get by with less internal storage, but I have enough stuff that will be hard to migrate to external disks that I gave up on the idea.) Does anyone have any direct experience using similar models?
 

yoak

macrumors 65816
Oct 4, 2004
1,483
41
Oslo, Norway
I have a 15" late 2013 mbp, and edit 4k on it (prores, shorter projectsand) that works fine. I'm tempted to buy a mini, but I know I will have to get an egpu as well.
(What I really need is an iMac Pro as I shoot mostly 6K or 8K)
 
  • Like
Reactions: F-Train

F-Train

macrumors 65816
Apr 22, 2015
1,457
992
NYC & Newfoundland
I have a 15" late 2013 mbp, and edit 4k on it (prores, shorter projectsand) that works fine. I'm tempted to buy a mini, but I know I will have to get an egpu as well.
(What I really need is an iMac Pro as I shoot mostly 6K or 8K)
Nice work on your web site!
 

Coyote2006

macrumors regular
Apr 16, 2006
224
96
I'm currently using a MBP 15 late 2013 as my MacPro 5,1 died a few weeks ago. I considered to get a MacMini for desktop but I decided to wait for the MacPro, as the MBP seems to be fast enough for now. But I'll get a new 4K monitor (considering the upcoming BenQ PD3220U).
 

Eithanius

macrumors 65816
Nov 19, 2005
1,419
285
I’m considering it as well. Ever since I got my iPad, I use my 2010 MBP less and less, mostly for iTunes sync and torrents.

Getting a Mac Mini will allow me to hook up to a TV for home entertainment.
 

Trusteft

macrumors 6502a
Nov 5, 2014
582
510
I'm mostly talking about people who use their MacBook Pros as desktop machines, but I thought it might be interesting to have a thread for anyone making this jump.

I currently use a 2014 MacBook Pro 15" as a desktop in clamshell mode connected to three monitors, an external keyboard and mouse, and way too many external hard disks. It's still a pretty good machine, but it does occasionally choke when editing 1080p video in Final Cut X, and 4k video is totally out of the question. While I could continue using it for a while longer, given Apple's upgrade cycle, I was thinking that this might be a good time to go ahead and switch to the Mac mini.

Just going by Geekbench scores and people's impressions, it sounds like anything but the i3 base model of Mac Mini would be a significant performance upgrade, but I was wondering if people had any thoughts about this. I especially want to avoid going through the trouble and expense of buying a new machine only to find out that it's worse than what I have in some way. (I'm aware that the mini lacks a dedicated graphics card, but I'm not sure that it will affect my usage much. Would it be a problem for Final Cut?)

I'm considering the i5 model with either 16 or 32GB of RAM and either 512GB or 1TB SSD.
The dedicated GPU would help with FCPX. Have you considered going for a new MBP that were just released with the VEGA graphics options?
 

yoak

macrumors 65816
Oct 4, 2004
1,483
41
Oslo, Norway
Are you working with proxies? Because my MacBook Pro really chokes when I try to edit 4K.
I just got it second hand as the mini wouldn't arrive in time for a small project I got.
I shot 4K prores 442 in camera on my Red Epic-W and dumped that straight into the laptop .no external disk though . That could possibly be your bottle neck .It was only 140gb of footage and a 2 minutes final film .it started to slow down towards the end of the edit, but then I had added a lot of animated graphics
[doublepost=1543176523][/doublepost]
Nice work on your web site!
Thanks .the website is a bit of a mess .I was trying to update it last week, but stuff happened
 

mightyjabba

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Sep 25, 2014
1,303
73
Tatooine
I shot 4K prores 442 in camera on my Red Epic-W and dumped that straight into the laptop .no external disk though . That could possibly be your bottle neck
That's possible. I've just been using a USB 3 external hard disk and haven't tried editing on an SSD. Hmm...