Which Mac mini setup would you recommed...

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by edoe, Sep 10, 2015.

  1. edoe macrumors newbie

    Sep 10, 2015
    Hi, I am thinking of getting a Mac Mini, since I have an unused Thunderbolt display at home and my Macbook is not powerful enough for some tasks. I will be using the Mac mini for Lightroom, Photoshop and iMovie (and eventually Final Cut), so which configuration should I go for? i5 vs i7? 8GB vs 16GB? 1TB Fusion or 256 GB SSD?

    Thanks in advance!
  2. avemestr macrumors regular

    Aug 14, 2012
    A quad-core i7 Mac Mini from 2012 would be the best for your situation.

    If you go for a 2014 model be aware that you cannot upgrade RAM and CPU later on. If you go for 8GB today, you'll never get to 16GB (on a 2012 model, you can upgrade).

    If you wants a 2014 model, I'd go for the mid-range with 8 or 16GB and SSD. Slower storage can always be added to the computer via USB3 or TB. Spinning drives have no place inside computers these days.
  3. phrehdd macrumors 68040


    Oct 25, 2008
    I think you are right on the money with your suggestions. Those media oriented apps do take advantage of the multi-core and love both RAM and drive space. I use Capture One Pro and Photoshop and a quad Mini is the only way I would go if I had to get another Mini (and thus, I opted not to get one of the newer Minis until another quad comes out).
  4. Fishrrman macrumors G5


    Feb 20, 2009
    Since you're interested in video editing (which consumes RAM), you should figure on 16gb.

    The 2014 Mini (midrange and top-end) has a considerably better graphics processor than the late-2012 models. Something to consider.

    The advantage of a 1tb fusion drive (over a "straight" SSD) is that you get 1.125tb of drive space, instead of, say, 512gb. Something else to consider if you're going to be handling and storing lots of large files and projects.

    I'd suggest a 2014 Mini, the "top" model, with 16gb of RAM.
    Whether you opt for the "factory" version (1tb fusion drive) or "build to order" (for an SSD), is up to you...
  5. avemestr macrumors regular

    Aug 14, 2012
    So, what you're suggesting is a 2014 2.8GHz i5 with 16GB of RAM and Fusion drive or SSD. That will set OP back $1199. If you mean the "top model" it is the i5 3.0GHz which will set OP back $1399 for the same configuration.

    My suggestion will cost OP about $750 for the Mac Mini (e.g. http://www.ebay.com/itm/Apple-Mac-M...A-late-2012-/161815848690?hash=item25acf9e6f2). 16GB of compatible Crucial memory costs about $75. A 256GB Samsung 850 Pro SSD costs $140.

    2012 quad-core i7 with upgrades: $965
    2014 dual-core i5 2.6GHz: $1199
    2014 dual-core i5 3.0GHz: $1399

    Oh, and then I forgot to mention the raw multi-core processing power of each, which matters in iMovie, FCPX etc:

    2012 quad-core i7 2.3GHz: 11691
    2014 dual-core i5 2.6GHz: 7038
    2014 dual-core i5 3.0GHz: 7111

    So, you're suggesting OP to pay 25-45% more for computers, that have a processing power that is about 40% lower than the 2012 model?
  6. tibas92013 macrumors 6502

    Jun 2, 2013
    Costa Rica
    Nope, last June I purchased from the Apple Store a Refurbished i5 Mac Mini(Late 2014) 2.8 GHZ, 8GG RAM, 256SSD for around $850.00 plus tax and is a great little powerhouse!
  7. MRrainer macrumors 6502a

    Aug 8, 2008
    Zurich, Switzerland
    We don't even know the country OP is from. In my country, the refurb-store looks like an 80s Soviet grocery store: empty most of the time, except for AirPort, iPod, Keyboard and AppleTV stuff, sometimes.
    Getting a 2012 isn't a bad idea, though - if OP can deal with opening it and replacing the HD with an SSD.

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