What are you using your mini for?

What do you use your mini for?

  • Primary desktop

    Votes: 19 47.5%
  • Secondary desktop

    Votes: 9 22.5%
  • Media center

    Votes: 16 40.0%
  • Server

    Votes: 16 40.0%
  • Other (see thread)

    Votes: 5 12.5%

  • Total voters
    40
  • Poll closed .

MultiFinder17

macrumors 68020
Original poster
Jan 8, 2008
2,225
1,016
Tampa, Florida
Just out of curiosity, what do you have minis around your home doing? I have two at my home right now; a 2012 serves as my home media/file/backup/web server, and a 2009 serves as a secondary desktop to toy around with and occasionally hook up to the TV. Previously, I had a 2009 mini as my primary desktop for four years. What are your minis up to?
 

macgeek18

macrumors 68000
Sep 8, 2009
1,841
698
Northern California
My CD Mini is my primary desktop. It also is my most powerful desktop since I run mainly laptops. It's in my man cave with all my project PPC Macs. It's my iFixit/music server haha.
 

Trajan81

macrumors newbie
Oct 3, 2013
20
11
Kingston, Ontario
I use my 2012 quad i7 as a headless Plex server. My hopes for another quad core i7 mini are pretty much non-existent at this point. When the mini can no longer keep up, I will have to look elsewhere for a plex server.
 

Denmac1

macrumors 6502a
Apr 22, 2007
666
725
Lost in Space
Bought 2012 MM to upgrade(?) my G5 Mac (Power PC). I knew that I would want to go with newer software updates. Maxed it out with 16 ram and will probably soon go to SSD. Bought as I knew that the next mini released would have some limitations.
I still use my G5 as there are several photo and graphic apps that I use.
 

ardchoille50

macrumors 68020
Feb 6, 2014
2,142
1,217
I have the Mac mini 2012 base model, this is my only computer. This is my first Mac and I use it for pretty much everything (web surfing, email, movies, office work, graphics, etc.). I moved from Windows to Linux in 1999, haven't touch a Microsoft product since then, and moved again from Linux to OS X in 2014. I'm quite happy that I moved everything to iOS and OS X and I'll never look back. I plan to buy another Mac mini and move the current one to the living room to serve as an entertainment system.
 
Last edited:

AFEPPL

macrumors 68030
Sep 30, 2014
2,644
1,570
England
I've taken mine and used it to fill the space within the box it came with..
Or to put it another way, it's now redundant and was replaced by an old PC i had laying around to run as an iTunes server.
The PC on W10 is more reliable and performant.
 

ActionableMango

macrumors G3
Sep 21, 2010
9,563
6,836
Well the heater I removed from inside the enclosure was 9 watts, and the 2012 Mini idles at 11 watts. So the Mini is much closer in wattage (and size!) than a Mac Pro.

I mean, it's not just a heater. It's also a file server, media server, and runs automated backup processes for itself and my Mac Pro.
 
  • Like
Reactions: jpietrzak8

MrWillie

macrumors 65816
Apr 29, 2010
1,347
306
Starlite Starbrite Trailer Court
I use mine to manage our iOS devices, light computer usage, and as a media server. It is installed on my tv stand. (Media center). It's also the mid range model.

I use my 2012 quad i7 as a headless Plex server. My hopes for another quad core i7 mini are pretty much non-existent at this point. When the mini can no longer keep up, I will have to look elsewhere for a plex server.

Why do you need a quad core i7 to use as a Plex server ? Most people buy the entry level Minis to use as media servers.
 
  • Like
Reactions: brendu

Trajan81

macrumors newbie
Oct 3, 2013
20
11
Kingston, Ontario
I use mine to manage our iOS devices, light computer usage, and as a media server. It is installed on my tv stand. (Media center). It's also the mid range model.



Why do you need a quad core i7 to use as a Plex server ? Most people buy the entry level Minis to use as media servers.

I share my server with several friends/family members and require a CPU that keep up with 3-5 concurrent transcode streams. Dual core i5 is nowhere near enough to support that. To transcode a 1080P movie, you need roughly a passmark score of 2000. The 2014 dual core models top out at a passmark of 4959 for the dual core i7. My 2012 quad i7 mac mini has a passmark of 7373.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Nospig

jpietrzak8

macrumors 65816
Feb 16, 2010
1,053
6,100
Dayton, Ohio
To transcode a 1080P movie, you need roughly a passmark score of 2000.

Er, what??? I'm not sure what software you're using, but I haven't seen a transcoding application that will balk if it doesn't like the CPU. A slow CPU should simply mean a slow transcode, nothing more. (Are you talking about some sort of real-time video modification?)
 

Nospig

macrumors member
Jul 25, 2011
71
62
Bangkok, Thailand
Er, what??? I'm not sure what software you're using, but I haven't seen a transcoding application that will balk if it doesn't like the CPU. A slow CPU should simply mean a slow transcode, nothing more. (Are you talking about some sort of real-time video modification?)

Plex transcodes in real time unless you ask it to generate optimised versions of videos ahead of time. So if you have 2 or 3 people watching 1080p movies on iPads you need something with a bit of grunt to handle it.
 
  • Like
Reactions: jpietrzak8

jpietrzak8

macrumors 65816
Feb 16, 2010
1,053
6,100
Dayton, Ohio
Plex transcodes in real time unless you ask it to generate optimised versions of videos ahead of time. So if you have 2 or 3 people watching 1080p movies on iPads you need something with a bit of grunt to handle it.

Ah, thanks! I've always just used Handbrake for transcoding. I guess I've never really seen any value in trying to do such things real-time...
 

Nospig

macrumors member
Jul 25, 2011
71
62
Bangkok, Thailand
Ah, thanks! I've always just used Handbrake for transcoding. I guess I've never really seen any value in trying to do such things real-time...

It's useful if you have a 1080p version of the movie but have many different devices you want to watch on, some that can't handle 1080p. You only need 1 copy of the movie on your server. I run my Plex server on Ubuntu running on a Skylake Pentium G4400, just enough to handle one H.265 stream.
 
  • Like
Reactions: jpietrzak8

hallux

macrumors 68040
Apr 25, 2012
3,143
693
I use mine as a download mule and media host. Download media to a 4-bay USB 3.0 enclosure, play it on my MBP in the other room. I'm not using Plex, just file sharing.

I have enough free storage I could probably set myself up as a CrashPlan endpoint for my brother as well as for my MBP, then we don't have to pay for the service (the app is free to use for P2P backup destinations).
 
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.