Time for a Mac Midi ?

MarcelEdward

macrumors member
Original poster
Sep 24, 2012
46
0
It seems to me it is time for apple to make a mac midi. It is oke when it is twice as big as the old mini.

The following specs would make it an excellent mid range mac:

256gig ssd
2tb hdd
cpu intel core i7 4770k
gforge gtx 660
16gig 1866 ram

Apple may solder the ram in, as long as they do not forget to put in the possibility to add some extra ram. Not that I would need it now, I just want to have the option to add some extra ram when I need it along the way.

And I think it could go in the 1300$ price range :)
 

barkmonster

macrumors 68020
Dec 3, 2001
2,124
12
Lancashire
Personally, for all the uses I'd have for Thunderbolt, I'd just pick up a used Mac Pro tower and add some extra PCIe cards for USB 3.0 and SATA 6/Gbs. You can get the 3.2Ghz 8-core 2008 Models online for about the same as the current mid range Mac Mini. They're upgradable and can even use the RAM from the original Mac Pro with only a small performance hit (barefeats had it as 4% in tests of the 2008 vs 2006 Mac Pro). There's very cheap RAM kits on eBay. £60 per pair of 667Mhz 4Gb sticks (8Gb total) complete with heatsinks.

That means you can add 4 internal drives and SATA 3Gb/s is far faster than any HDD.

A USB 3.0 PCIe card takes care of modern peripherals.

There's cards that allow you to fit the Samsung PCIe SSDs the 2013 Mac Pro flash drives are based on and it's £45 for the card and £199 for the drive in a 256Gb size.

There's also new PCIe cards that offer 2 onboard 2.5" bays, max out at about 800Gb/s with 2 fitted in a RAID 0 config and offer 2 external eSATA connectors on the card for about £85 that you can fit standard SATA 6Gb/s SSDs to.
 
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MarcelEdward

macrumors member
Original poster
Sep 24, 2012
46
0
Personally, for all the uses I'd have for Thunderbolt, I'd just pick up a used Mac Pro tower and add some extra PCIe cards for USB 3.0 and SATA 6/Gbs. You can get the 3.2Ghz 8-core 2008 Models online for about the same as the current mid range Mac Mini. They're upgradable and can even use the RAM from the original Mac Pro with only a small performance hit (barefeats had it as 4% in tests of the 2008 vs 2006 Mac Pro). There's very cheap RAM kits on eBay. £60 per pair of 667Mhz 4Gb sticks (8Gb total) complete with heatsinks.

That means you can add 4 internal drives and SATA 3Gb/s is far faster than any HDD.

A USB 3.0 PCIe card takes care of modern peripherals.

There's cards that allow you to fit the Samsung PCIe SSDs the 2013 Mac Pro flash drives are based on and it's £45 for the card and £199 for the drive in a 256Gb size.

There's also new PCIe cards that offer 2 onboard 2.5" bays, max out at about 800Gb/s with 2 fitted in a RAID 0 config and offer 2 external eSATA connectors on the card for about £85 that you can fit standard SATA 6Gb/s SSDs to.
oh yes, the case of a 2008 pro will do.
I have got no use for almost 10 year old hardware with 667hrz ram. It will not be able to run the software.
I neither have got devices who require usb 3 nor any thunderbolt devices.
199 pounds will buy at least a 512gb ssd. But 256gb will do, that is enough to do fast dualboot with 2 oses.
 

Larry-K

macrumors 68000
Jun 28, 2011
1,852
2,316
We've been asking for a mid range headless mac as long as I can remember.

It's fallen on deaf ears so far.
 

crazzapple

Guest
Oct 19, 2014
197
0
We've been asking for a mid range headless mac as long as I can remember.

It's fallen on deaf ears so far.
I just can't imagine it happening at this point. Apple is a lifestyle company going the way of disposable appliances. If you want a small, affordable, upgradable computer, it won't be from apple.
 

shaunp

Cancelled
Nov 5, 2010
1,811
1,394
Like others I have been wanting one of these for ages. I gave up in the end and bought a nMP. Apple will have a problem convincing me to buy another though when it's time to replace that machine. I'm working freelance so putting the £4000 through the company wasn't an issue. I won't be contracting forever though and if I have to fund this myself I'll be buying a PC.

Apple want to build appliances, the problem is not everyone wants an appliance. Apple seems to have forgotten its roots - the enthusiast - and once fashion changes it will bite them as the enthusiast who buy kit because they want it, not because it is necessarily cool.
 

RockSpider

macrumors 6502a
Sep 18, 2014
903
396
It seems to me it is time for apple to make a mac midi. It is oke when it is twice as big as the old mini.

The following specs would make it an excellent mid range mac:

256gig ssd
2tb hdd
cpu intel core i7 4770k
gforge gtx 660
16gig 1866 ram

Apple may solder the ram in, as long as they do not forget to put in the possibility to add some extra ram. Not that I would need it now, I just want to have the option to add some extra ram when I need it along the way.

And I think it could go in the 1300$ price range :)
If they build that in a small form factor I would almost certainly buy it, I sort of thought I was getting something like that when I bought the Mini, alas I was mistaken. I don't mind the Mini, but every now and then I wish it were a powerhouse instead of a powermouse.
 

RockSpider

macrumors 6502a
Sep 18, 2014
903
396
I think this is what you're after.

GB-BXi7G3-760 (rev. 1.0)
GB-BXi7G3-760 (rev. 1.0)
* Product may vary based on local distribution.
Features latest Intel® 4th generation Core™ processors - i7-4710HQ
Supports discrete graphic card (NVIDIA GeForce GTX 760 GPU with mini HDMI x2, mini DP Output, featuring triple displays)
Supports 2.5” Hard Drives (1 x 6Gbps SATA 3)
Ultra compact PC design - 0.88L (59.6 x 128 x 115.4 mm)
1 x mSATA SSD Slot
2 x SO-DIMM DDR3L Slots (1333 / 1600 MHz)
IEEE 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac Wi-Fi / Bluetooth 4.0 Mini-PCIe card
4 x USB 3.0
Gigabit LAN
Headphone jack with MIC
VESA mounting bracket (75 x 75mm + 100 x 100mm)
...more
 

Larry-K

macrumors 68000
Jun 28, 2011
1,852
2,316
I just can't imagine it happening at this point. Apple is a lifestyle company going the way of disposable appliances. If you want a small, affordable, upgradable computer, it won't be from apple.
I hope they just become a watch company.
 

Agent-J

macrumors regular
Sep 20, 2014
148
38
It seems to me it is time for apple to make a mac midi. It is oke when it is twice as big as the old mini.

The following specs would make it an excellent mid range mac:

256gig ssd
2tb hdd
cpu intel core i7 4770k
gforge gtx 660
16gig 1866 ram

Apple may solder the ram in, as long as they do not forget to put in the possibility to add some extra ram. Not that I would need it now, I just want to have the option to add some extra ram when I need it along the way.

And I think it could go in the 1300$ price range :)
This is just a fun exercise, since I doubt Apple would ever make one, having seen the '14 Mini... But...

What you need is a Mac Midi that positions the Mini clearly at the low end of the headless desktop product range, and the Mac Pro clearly at the high end. We'd have to accept processor and RAM caps. Give it the quad core i5 in the low-end model retina iMac so it doesn't compete so obviously with Mac Pro. And it needs better graphics; 660 is just barely adequate for Skyrim with ENB. Maybe R9 280X or 290X as an option? Two SATA ports inside, or even just one, but user-accessible. Apple can solder in RAM for all I care, 8 or 16 GB options, or maybe just 16 GB. At least 2 Thunderbolt ports and HDMI. Give up a USB3 port if needed, hubs are cheap. Oh, it would be a bad little boy...:cool:
 

barkmonster

macrumors 68020
Dec 3, 2001
2,124
12
Lancashire
oh yes, the case of a 2008 pro will do.
I have got no use for almost 10 year old hardware with 667hrz ram. It will not be able to run the software.
I neither have got devices who require usb 3 nor any thunderbolt devices.
199 pounds will buy at least a 512gb ssd. But 256gb will do, that is enough to do fast dualboot with 2 oses.
First you claim it's too dated. The point I was making is, a 2008 or later 8-core Xeon WILL run current software!

That particular system is capable of running the latest OS, benches at 12792 in the Geekbench 64 bit multi-core test which is couple of 100 below the 2.2Ghz Haswell i7 in the 2014 Mac Book

Then you hypocritically claim you have no use for USB 3.0 or Thunderbolt.

This defeats the point of claiming it's dated for your uses because it fits every requirement of being able to run current software and not offering features you don't need.

My main point is this system is available now. The fact Apple refuse to make a mid-sized Mac with a quad i7 Haswell and some level of expansion is the problem.
 
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Nermal

Moderator
Staff member
Dec 7, 2002
18,814
1,290
New Zealand
We've been asking for a mid range headless mac as long as I can remember.

It's fallen on deaf ears so far.
Pretty much. There was a $1299 Power Mac in 2003 and I snapped that one up, but I don't recall anything "decent" at that price point since :(
 

barkmonster

macrumors 68020
Dec 3, 2001
2,124
12
Lancashire
Pretty much. There was a $1299 Power Mac in 2003 and I snapped that one up, but I don't recall anything "decent" at that price point since :(
I know that all too well. I bought the 2002 Quicksilver and added a dual CPU board, SATA, USB 2.0 and an SSD boot-drive at a later date.

That system served me well for years and I got the 2009 Mac Mini as a tie over with the intention of re-using it as media centre and getting a Mac Pro.

They pulled the £1,399 BTO 2Ghz dual Mac Pro from the original range once the 2008 models came out, then they kept increasing the base price with each new version till it was over £2000 and now it's a form-before-function waste of money. (which the perpetually arrogant will claim is only for "professionals").

The used market is good for 6-core+ 2010/12 towers and some of the even older 8-core systems can at least hold their own against lower-clocked quad i7s but there isn't a single desktop Mac worth spending any money on anymore. Even a £1,500 Mac Pro would be something to aim for if they took the next model up to 6, 8 and 12 cores and sold a lower spec model as an entry level but it'll never happen.
 
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Larry-K

macrumors 68000
Jun 28, 2011
1,852
2,316
It was the "Mirrored Drive Doors 2003", a 1.25 GHz G4 (with BTO dual G4s) and a full complement of drive bays, PCI slots, etc :)
Yeah!! I've got one under my desk, keep it for sentimental value.

It was a workhorse in it's day.
 
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