Which Mini is best for transcoding video?

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by oneMadRssn, Apr 24, 2014.

  1. oneMadRssn macrumors 68040

    oneMadRssn

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2011
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #1
    Option 1: Mid 2011 Mac Mini - Sandy Bridge CPU - AMD Radeon HD 6630M
    Option 2: Late 2012 Mac Mini - Ive Bridge CPU - Intel HD4000

    I plan to use one as an iTunes homeserver and PVR.

    Which would transcode from a 1080p MPEG2 video to an iTunes / AppleTV compatible h264 video faster? Which would be able to multitask and do several videos at the same time faster? Is the difference so inappreciably small that it doesn't matter?

    I've read all the usual reports and benchmarks comparing them, and it seems the numbers suggest the 2012 model would be slightly faster; but I have my doubts because the same benchmarks suggest that gaming is slightly better on the 2011 model with the AMD GPU. So it seems like a toss up?

    Has anyone here actually owned both models and done something similar with them?

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    For context - I'm hoping to have a setup similar to the one outlined here: http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1714136
     
  2. philipma1957 macrumors 603

    philipma1957

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2010
    Location:
    Howell, New Jersey
  3. sonicrobby macrumors 68020

    sonicrobby

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2013
    Location:
    New Orleans
    #3
    Its all about the processor, make sure you get the quad core and not the dual core version. Im sure both will be able to handle about the same if they are both the same #-of-core CPU
     
  4. paulrbeers macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2009
    #4
    Clearly you must be comparing a 2012 Base Model to the 2011 Mid-model (the one with the 6630m). They both have dual cores and would process about the same. However, to do apples to apples comparison of the 2012 mid-model to the 2011 mid-model, the 2012 would have 4 cores and crushes the pure processing power of the 2011. I've owned a 2011 Base (dual core) and the 2012 Mid (quad core) and for transcoding video it is night and day.

    Go with the 2012 Mid-model.
     
  5. blanka macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2012
    #5
    Any Mini from 2009 up is an excellent HTPC, that does not need transcoding as it plays everything (MKV, 24p, DTS HDMA). Don't settle for an ATV in between the Mini and your TV! That's like driving your Ferrari around on a trailer.
     
  6. BeatCrazy macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2011
    #6
    Except when you have 4 TVs and want to share/access your iTunes content among them. Heck of a lot cheaper than throwing 4 Mac minis behind each TV, not to mention the easy usability of an ATV.
     
  7. blanka macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2012
    #7
    You can also hook up a Raspberry Pi at every TV. Even cheaper, and with excellent iOS controller program, even easier than the crappy AppleTV remote. And what's the point of 4 TV's? I can watch just one.
     
  8. sumo.do macrumors member

    sumo.do

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2014
    Location:
    Australia
    #8
  9. oneMadRssn thread starter macrumors 68040

    oneMadRssn

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2011
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #9
    Thanks everyone. I foolishly did not consider the fact that quad core would make a difference.

    Also, since this would be a host for more than one TV / computer; using the ATV seems like the easiest way to do this.
     
  10. drsox macrumors 65816

    drsox

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2011
    Location:
    Xhystos
    #10
    Yes, but do you always want to be sitting in the same room ? I have 3 TVs in 3 different rooms for 3 different purposes, each with a media streamer - all running from the same media source in the attic.
     

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