Should I buy late 2014 Mac Mini?

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by xotigu, Aug 14, 2015.

  1. xotigu macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2014
    #1
    Hi guys,
    Been planning to eradicate my PC because of so much virus and frequent reformats I've been dealing with.
    I'm planning to buy a Mac Mini instead.

    Should I buy now or will there be a Mac Mini 2015 coming this october?
    I will be buying just the baseline model as that's what suits my needs.
    *Also if someone tried to play Dota 2 there, will it be enough.

    Thanks!
     
  2. The Doctor11 macrumors 603

    The Doctor11

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2013
    Location:
    New York
    #2
    The Mac mini went I believe from 2011 to 2014 without an update so I wouldn't expect an update this year.

    Also a friend of mine recently purchased their first Mac, a base line Mac Mini 2014 and love it :)
     
  3. xotigu thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2014
    #3
    I think there really is an update from 2011-2014 (except for 2013)
    Although I'm not sure this year if there will be.
    And yeah, I think the base line is really enough for everything except for hardcore picture/video editing.
     
  4. Celerondon, Aug 14, 2015
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2015

    Celerondon macrumors 6502a

    Celerondon

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2013
    Location:
    Southern Cal
    #4
    There was a Mac mini update in late 2012.

    If you follow Fishrrman's advice (below) you can do plenty of picture and video work with the mid-range model.
     
  5. Fishrrman macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #5
    I wouldn't expect to see a Mini update before 1st quarter or 2nd quarter 2016.

    Having said that, I'll repeat advice given often to those considering a 2014 Mini:
    DO NOT buy "the entry-level" model.
    Buy AT LEAST the midrange model.
    DO NOT buy one UNLESS you also order at least the 1tb fusion drive.

    Disregard this advice, and you may discover yourself an unhappy customer...
     
  6. redheeler macrumors 603

    redheeler

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2014
    #6
    The Mac mini was updated yearly from 2009-2012, with two updates in 2009. Yearly mini updates are not out of the question.

    That being said, I agree probably not this year. The Mac mini is a somewhat low priority for Apple.
     
  7. macjustin macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2008
    #7
    You can see the updates listed here http://buyersguide.macrumors.com/#Mac_Mini

    With Skylake trickling out there just may be updates this year or more likely early next year (usually happens after MacAir gets updates).
     
  8. Micky Do macrumors 68000

    Micky Do

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2012
    Location:
    An island in the Andaman Sea.
    #8
    There are several customers happy with the 2014 base model Mac Mini in this thread, among others.

    http://forums.macrumors.com/threads/base-mac-mini-2014-question.1902676/

    For basic use it would seem to be at least adequate. For much above basic use a higher spec is probably preferable; the mid range model with Fusion Drive looks favourite as the sweet spot, albeit at nearly twice the price of the base model.
     
  9. aajeevlin macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2010
    #9
    My issue is that "right now" they are happy. But how much longer would it be before you feel that it starts to slow down and realize that you can't upgrade (unless you get a new machine)? Not bashing on the base model, I just don't have a lot to spend so I'd like to make my selection wisely, albeit that it might be more money in the beginning.
     
  10. rawweb, Aug 14, 2015
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2015

    rawweb macrumors 6502a

    rawweb

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2015
    #10
    In terms of performance the late 2012 model actually beats the 2014 model on the bench (because 2012 had quad core options). I owned the 2014 model for about a week before I returned it and found a used 2012 on Craigslist for several hundred dollars less. Granted, I don't "use" it daily, it's a media server for me. Just so you know the 2014 model is not considered 'user upgradable'. The ram is soldered and it's not easy to get to the hard drive. So if you get a 14, think for the future. Put as much ram as you'll need in there, and get the best drive option. For me that would be the mid range 2.6 ghz i5 model with 16gb of ram and a 256 PCIe SSD (you can get more storage by picking up a thunderbolt drive if and when you need it). Just upgrading the ram and drive will set you back to a total price of $1,100.00 retail. All 2014 models are dual core configuration only (previous generation included quad core i7).

    For me, I was able to pick up a used 2012 2.5 GHZ (dual core) i5 for $375 bucks. I upgraded the ram to 16gb and threw in a spare SSD with a conversion kit from OWC for less than $150 bucks. You can see the 2012 dual core and 2014 dual core on my geek bench: http://browser.primatelabs.com/user/ryanthewebber. To me the score difference is marginal compared to the cost saving.
     
  11. Micky Do, Aug 14, 2015
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2015

    Micky Do macrumors 68000

    Micky Do

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2012
    Location:
    An island in the Andaman Sea.
    #11

    In terms of performance the base model 2014 Mini slightly outperforms the the base model 2012.

    The 2012 quad core performance is a red herring as it is base model that the OP is interested in. Like many other day to day Mini users, probably not much interested in throwing in spare conversion kits or whatever either.

    Over six years on, my base model 2009 Mini still performs more than adequately for my humble needs. The 2014 base model would perform even better.

    I did have 4 GB of RAM added along side the original 1 GB to upgrade to Mountain Lion, which requires at least 2 GB. However, I don't think the lack of upgradeability is a big issue some make it out to be. I'm picking that the days of new iterations of OS and apps requiring exponentially increasing amounts of RAM have probably passed.
     
  12. rawweb macrumors 6502a

    rawweb

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2015
    #12
    I wasn't trying to mislead anyone, I was however taking an opportunity to showcase how I saved a lot of money without sacrificing performance. The base 2012 was the 2.5 ghz i5, geek bench 2757 on single core. The 2014 is technically clocked slower at 1.4 ghz, however it has a score of 2793 according to the quick specs I'm reading at every mac. That is more or less the same score, my advice, find a used 2012. The pros of upgradability are king to me. Especially if you want 16gb of ram and don't want to pay Apples ram prices. Just my two cents.

    I grant my opening statement may have been worded strange. My intention was to highlight that the 2012 model featured quad core options while there are only dual core options for 2014, so of course...multi core scores would be higher.
     
  13. aajeevlin macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2010
    #13
    It's funny that you brought this up. Because, guess what? I also have a 2009 base model that I'm using as my main machine right now. However, I had to put in additional 4GB of RAM (total of 8GB) as well as an SSD. Now I'm not sure how to gauge if a computer is slow or not. For me I feel that my 2009 is enough and I'm willing to put up with it because of it's age, it has been six years after all. Now with the base 2014 model, with the 1.4Ghz and a HDD, which most users won't bother/know how to upgrade. I really don't know if it would last as long as six year, I feel that people would have gotten rid of it long before that because it will have become too slow after a couple of years.
     
  14. Celerondon macrumors 6502a

    Celerondon

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2013
    Location:
    Southern Cal
    #14
    Of course, the 2014 has other advantages over the 2012...
    1. Better Graphics - HD4000 versus HD5000
    2. Better WiFi - 802.11n versus 802.11ac
    3. Better Thunderbolt - T 1.0 versus T 2.0
    4. More Thunderbolt ports - 1 port versus 2 ports
    Some of these advantages are not slight. Although extra hardware is required to use it, the 2014 also adds a PCIe header for lightning quick storage access with an Apple-type SSD. That is one upgrade that my 2012 cannot experience for any price.
     
  15. allsquare macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2016
    #15
    I have been following all the critical comments on the 2014 Mini. At present I use aMacBook Pro (2012) 8gb/512SSD plus a
    1080 separate display. My main use is Lightroom/Photoshop as an amateur, not a pro. I was thinking of changing to a top spec BTO mini which would allow me to keep the existing display. I was also considering 21.5 iMac retina but I would be paying quite a bit more for a better display but no increase in performance. I still find it a difficult decision
    --- Post Merged, Jun 16, 2016 ---
    I should have said present display is 24 inch 1920 x 1080, 60khz
     

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