or Connect
AppleInsider › Forums › Mac Hardware › Current Mac Hardware › Is the Mac Mini a serious Desktop Computer?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Is the Mac Mini a serious Desktop Computer?

post #1 of 30
Thread Starter 
Hello Everyone, I'm just looking at -ALL- my options as I am switching to Mac from windows although I do have a pretty powerful windows machine I will keep for whatever I may need it for. Dell xps 8300 i7 2600 3.4Gz 12G ram AMD 5700 HD. I have been following many Mac forums and started out wanting a Mac Pro (BTW I don't need a laptop as I have an iPad2 for all my mobile needs) But the future and cost of the MP questionable. Then I seriously considered the iMac but don't really like the limitations with an all-n-one machine although I wouldn't be afraid of it. Now I am looking into the Mac Mini which I had pretty much cast aside as a toy computer... Until I started reading some reviews on it and I was quite surprised. Some of the reviews are almost unbelievable what people are saying they can do with their Mac Mini. I don't know if this is just hype or truth. Any serious advice would be helpful.
I use a computer to build websites, some photo shop, writing blogs, and I have one research program that holds about 2000 books that does unbelievable searches from searching for every instance of a word or phrase in various languages within whatever filter I want to make it search for using a topic, word, verb tense, pronoun forms etc. etc. laying it all out in several different structures from list to charts, to graphs word clouds comparison threads in various forms - in literally seconds or sometimes on more complicated tasks under two minutes. This maxes out the core intell i7 and the 12G of Ram and slows my system down quite a bit.
I have an First started with apple with an iPod touch, then iPhone 4 Then an iPad 2 and have love the trouble free smooth way they work so I think I may be happier with a Mac computer as well. Any thoughts would be appreciated, Thanks
post #2 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by not1lost View Post

I am switching to Mac from windows

Welcome.

Quote:
But the future and cost of the MP questionable.

Also, if you didn't already know you needed one, you didn't need one.

Quote:
Then I seriously considered the iMac but don't really like the limitations with an all-n-one machine

What limitations would these be? I can think of two: the hard drive's a pain to get to and the GPU's non-upgradable, but you'd get that with any other model anyway. The hard drive one is certainly a legitimate concern.

Quote:
Now I am looking into the Mac Mini which I had pretty much cast aside as a toy computer... Until I started reading some reviews on it and I was quite surprised.

Yep. The little guy is truly a marvel.

Quote:
I don't know if this is just hype or truth. Any serious advice would be helpful.

Depends on what you're doing. Ah, and I see that you

Quote:
use a computer to build websites, some photo shop, writing blogs, and I have one research program that holds about 2000 books that does unbelievable searches from searching for every instance of a word or phrase in various languages within whatever filter I want to make it search for using a topic, word, verb tense, pronoun forms etc. etc. laying it all out in several different structures from list to charts, to graphs word clouds comparison threads in various forms - in literally seconds or sometimes on more complicated tasks under two minutes.

Do some things. Interesting things. If I may, what program would this be? It's entirely possible you'll need to run Windows on the Mac Mini to continue to use it, but if you already know there's a Mac version, that's moot.

Quote:
This maxes out the core in tell i7 and the 12G of Ram and slows my system down quite a bit.

Well, let's see. Every Mac is due for an update between the start of April and the end of August (really September 21, but for once I figure Mountain Lion will be out a little earlier than Apple expects), so it's a pretty bad time to be in the market.

The CPU performance increase for the Mac Mini will be average, I expect, but perhaps we'll finally get 4GB of RAM standard on the base model, which is a very long time coming. Not that that really matters much; you should get the lowest amount of RAM possible from Apple and buy and install your own third-party for quite cheaper if you're in the market for any sort of upgrade.

As for the performance of the Mac Mini, yeah, it's something of a little powerhouse. People use it for everything from an HTPC



to a custom in-car computer



to servers for every this and that.



For everything but the last one that you stated, a Mac Mini would work quite well. With a little more information about this database searching program, we should be able to see if you need more power than it has to offer (but I doubt it).

Originally Posted by Slurpy

There's just a TINY chance that Apple will also be able to figure out payments. Oh wait, they did already… …and you’re already f*ed.

 

Reply

Originally Posted by Slurpy

There's just a TINY chance that Apple will also be able to figure out payments. Oh wait, they did already… …and you’re already f*ed.

 

Reply
post #3 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by not1lost View Post

Dell xps 8300 i7 2600 3.4Gz 12G ram AMD 5700 HD.

This maxes out the core intell i7 and the 12G of Ram and slows my system down quite a bit.

In terms of CPU performance, here's how the Minis compare to your PC:

XPS 8300 - 10100
http://browse.geekbench.ca/geekbench2/582252
Quad Mini - 8700
http://browse.geekbench.ca/geekbench2/582126
dual-core Mini - 6592
http://browse.geekbench.ca/geekbench2/582349

Even with a dual-core, you will get 65% of the performance of the PC.

In terms of the GPU:
http://www.videocardbenchmark.net/high_end_gpus.html
AMD 5700HD = 1,116
Quad Mini Intel 3000 = 402
AMD dual-core Mini = 572

You should get about 50% of the GPU performance of the PC.

In terms of RAM, you can go up to 16GB in the Mini for $234:

http://eshop.macsales.com/shop/memor...mini/DDR3_1333

and you can fit two 2.5" hard drives inside. You can fit a 128GB SSD boot drive and a 750GB platter drive for example.

They are due for a refresh when the Ivy Bridge chips arrive in June and I'd expect this to make up for some of the difference in performance vs the PC. It should be 15% increase for the CPU so the dual-core goes to 7,580 Geekbench and the quad breaks the 10,000 mark.

The HD 4000 GPU is between 50-100% faster than Sandy Bridge so GPU scores between 603-804. Apple may choose to make the next Mini lineup entirely IGP-based but if they still have a dedicated GPU in the middle one, expect faster performance.

I expect a quad-i7 Ivy Bridge Mini with 16GB RAM and an SSD boot drive would be a suitable replacement for your PC and take up about 1/20th the space.
post #4 of 30
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

Welcome.

Yep. The little guy is truly a marvel.

Depends on what you're doing. Ah, and I see that you

Do some things. Interesting things. If I may, what program would this be? It's entirely possible you'll need to run Windows on the Mac Mini to continue to use it, but if you already know there's a Mac version, that's moot.

For everything but the last one that you stated, a Mac Mini would work quite well. With a little more information about this database searching program, we should be able to see if you need more power than it has to offer (but I doubt it).

Thanks for your input TS to answer your questions the main program that is taxing my system is Logos4 and there is a Mac version of it. On the logos forums I have expressed my problems and it seems all the power users are using Macs and advised me to get one to resolve the issue saying they had been through the same thing. I also need to use two monitors when using it. which is also helpful with the website building. I have some info here on it for you on the program that may help you understand. I love and need the program but it is a monster on my machine. There are several levels to the program according to the size of your library and my version is near the top. I also have several thousand dollars invested in the program - it is not cheap... Photoshop is kinda heavy on the GPU but Logos4 strains the whole system to the point when I am trying to take notes my typing is two words behind and I am not a fast typist, the mouse jumps around and screens flicker and even crash sometimes. The companies minimum requirements, Oh heck the maximum requirements for the progam are a joke! (just to get you into it) Then you find out as I did it just wont do and end up buying another computer to use it on. Well I am on my third and FINAL WINDOWS machine I wont keep spending money on these and still not getting the performance I need. The Dell I have now is a pretty hefty machine that is a little less than a year old... I want a machine that can handle anything I throw at it without slowing me down or crashing... This is what I do everyday... Here is a link to a 4 minuet overview video showing the program at work.

http://www.logos.com/4

and here are some screen shots of what my pc was doing this morning when I wasn't even pushing it...





System Name DENNIS-PC

System Manufacturer Dell Inc.

System Model XPS 8300

System Type x64-based

PC Processor Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-2600 CPU @ 3.40GHz, 3401 Mhz, 4 Core(s), 8 Logical Processor(s)

BIOS Version/Date Dell Inc. A06, 10/17/2011

SMBIOS Version 2.6

Windows Directory C\Windows

System Directory C\Windows\\system32

Boot Device \\Device\\HarddiskVolume2

Locale United States

Hardware Abstraction Layer Version = "6.1.7601.17514"

User Name Dennis-PC\\Dennis

Time Zone Central Daylight Time

Installed Physical Memory (RAM) 12.0 GB

Total Physical Memory 12.0 GB

Available Physical Memory 7.23 GB

Total Virtual Memory 24.0 GB

Available Virtual Memory 14.1 GB

Page File Space 12.0 GB

Page File C\pagefile.sys

I'm new to Mac so any help would be greatly appreciated!

Dennis

iPod Touch 64G iPhone4 32G iPad2 64G
post #5 of 30
Thread Starter 
Well the screen shots didnt come out as I expected - not used to this forums tools... anyway it shows the CPU maxed out at 100% Memory at 44% and Disc at 63% .... These this graph is also very radical seeming even unstable to me... Jumping top to bottom continuously... I dont know all about all these things but I do know this system is struggling to keep up. I can tell that without looking at these numbers... and here is a Log file of what my system does when I open Logos 4

well I "Tried" to put the system log of the logos program in the post but got this message
"The text that you have entered is too long (123629 characters). Please shorten it to 30000 characters long."
post #6 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by not1lost View Post

Well the screen shots didn't come out as I expected - not used to this forums tools

I use Imgur instead of the forum's built-in attachment system. It tends to compress and distort images.

As for Logos, I imagine a Mini would run it fine. Wait for Ivy Bridge if you can so you can get a performance boost (and HDD, RAM, etc.) for the same price, but yeah. It'd be nice if this sort of thing had Spotlight integration so that searching would be that much smarter and faster without any extra work on the part of the developer, but hey.

Originally Posted by Slurpy

There's just a TINY chance that Apple will also be able to figure out payments. Oh wait, they did already… …and you’re already f*ed.

 

Reply

Originally Posted by Slurpy

There's just a TINY chance that Apple will also be able to figure out payments. Oh wait, they did already… …and you’re already f*ed.

 

Reply
post #7 of 30
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post

In terms of CPU performance, here's how the Minis compare to your PC:

XPS 8300 - 10100
http://browse.geekbench.ca/geekbench2/582252
Quad Mini - 8700
http://browse.geekbench.ca/geekbench2/582126
dual-core Mini - 6592
http://browse.geekbench.ca/geekbench2/582349

Even with a dual-core, you will get 65% of the performance of the PC.

In terms of the GPU:
http://www.videocardbenchmark.net/high_end_gpus.html
AMD 5700HD = 1,116
Quad Mini Intel 3000 = 402
AMD dual-core Mini = 572

You should get about 50% of the GPU performance of the PC.

In terms of RAM, you can go up to 16GB in the Mini for $234:

http://eshop.macsales.com/shop/memor...mini/DDR3_1333

and you can fit two 2.5" hard drives inside. You can fit a 128GB SSD boot drive and a 750GB platter drive for example.

They are due for a refresh when the Ivy Bridge chips arrive in June and I'd expect this to make up for some of the difference in performance vs the PC. It should be 15% increase for the CPU so the dual-core goes to 7,580 Geekbench and the quad breaks the 10,000 mark.

The HD 4000 GPU is between 50-100% faster than Sandy Bridge so GPU scores between 603-804. Apple may choose to make the next Mini lineup entirely IGP-based but if they still have a dedicated GPU in the middle one, expect faster performance.

I expect a quad-i7 Ivy Bridge Mini with 16GB RAM and an SSD boot drive would be a suitable replacement for your PC and take up about 1/20th the space.

Well that is impressive for the little guy, I am surprised by the performance of such a small machine. Although it still is way behind what I have now and it's not nearly enough.... Thanks though...
I well may end up going with a MP if they do keep producing it (Heck, second thought I may buy one anyway. the one they have now is plenty powerful enough isnt it? or is there some un-upgradable things that are/will be necessary I dont know about) otherwise I'll propbably need at least an iMac 27 with high end CPU and maxed memory...
Thanks
post #8 of 30
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post


In terms of RAM, you can go up to 16GB in the Mini for $234:

http://eshop.macsales.com/shop/memor...mini/DDR3_1333

and you can fit two 2.5" hard drives inside. You can fit a 128GB SSD boot drive and a 750GB platter drive for example.

They are due for a refresh when the Ivy Bridge chips arrive in June and I'd expect this to make up for some of the difference in performance vs the PC. It should be 15% increase for the CPU so the dual-core goes to 7,580 Geekbench and the quad breaks the 10,000 mark.

The HD 4000 GPU is between 50-100% faster than Sandy Bridge so GPU scores between 603-804. Apple may choose to make the next Mini lineup entirely IGP-based but if they still have a dedicated GPU in the middle one, expect faster performance.

I expect a quad-i7 Ivy Bridge Mini with 16GB RAM and an SSD boot drive would be a suitable replacement for your PC and take up about 1/20th the space.

RE-THINKING.... What you said.... Maybe....? .... Thanks for all your help - It was very helpful...
post #9 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by not1lost View Post

Well that is impressive for the little guy, I am surprised by the performance of such a small machine. Although it still is way behind what I have now and it's not nearly enough.... Thanks though...
I well may end up going with a MP if they do keep producing it (Heck, second thought I may buy one anyway. the one they have now is plenty powerful enough isnt it? or is there some un-upgradable things that are/will be necessary I dont know about) otherwise I'll propbably need at least an iMac 27 with high end CPU and maxed memory...
Thanks

The Mini is an OK computer, but it's outclassed by an iMac or MP.

The main selling points, are its size and price. I have an old 2007 C2D Mini, and it's definitely showing it's age, primarily because it needs more RAM, and it can only be maxed out at ~3 GB. OSX is pretty nice, but I can't take advantage of some of the latest advances and I have no interest in putting Lion on it, partly because of RAM, and it's seems like it was made for a trackpad.

However, it's not a great computer, if you are concerned at all about maxing out RAM, or intensive games/GPU uses - it's a basic, desktop computer, and once you begin factoring BTO options, the $1200 base iMac blows it out of the water. The iMac offers a dedicated GPU, quad-core CPU, comes with KB/mouse, monitor...while an AIO, it's the better computer.

Personally for me, Apple doesn't make a computer that fits, I can't afford a MP, and the mythical xMac will never happen...so I won't be upgrading to a new Mac. It will probably be an iPad at some point, but only PC's offer what I'm looking for in a desktop.
post #10 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by guinness View Post

The Mini is an OK computer, but it's outclassed by an iMac or MP.

The main selling points, are its size and price. I have an old 2007 C2D Mini, and it's definitely showing it's age, primarily because it needs more RAM, and it can only be maxed out at ~3 GB. ....

That's all good and fine, but the OP is probably not in the market for a 2007 computer. Fortunately, there were two models of Mac mini released in 2009, one released in 2010, and one released in 2011. If the OP wants to learn about a Mac mini that he can actually buy in 2012, then he might want to look here and there.
post #11 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Me View Post

That's all good and fine, but the OP is probably not in the market for a 2007 computer. Fortunately, there were two models of Mac mini released in 2009, one released in 2010, and one released in 2011. If the OP wants to learn about a Mac mini that he can actually buy in 2012, then he might want to look here and there.

Understood, chief, but the OP seems more concerned with maxing out components and bells and whistles (the current Mini performs about 35% slower, CPU wise, and 50%, GPU wise then his current PC), so that kind of answers what performance to expect.

The only reason I brought up my Mini, is while I don't own the latest one, I do own one, and it's an OK computer, but if you're expecting Z from something that delivers X, you'll be disappointed, but it's also something that has a lower shelf life life, than something with more oomph, like the iMac.
post #12 of 30
Absolutely, the Mini is a very serious contender. I have it plugged into my HDTV, upgraded the base model from 2 GB to 8 GB of RAM (pretty much required even for basic use), and added in an SSD. It is very fast and I absolutely love it.

I have not been this proud of a computer since my parents bought me my first computer at age 12.
post #13 of 30
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by guinness View Post

Understood, chief, but the OP seems more concerned with maxing out components and bells and whistles (the current Mini performs about 35% slower, CPU wise, and 50%, GPU wise then his current PC), so that kind of answers what performance to expect.

The only reason I brought up my Mini, is while I don't own the latest one, I do own one, and it's an OK computer, but if you're expecting Z from something that delivers X, you'll be disappointed, but it's also something that has a lower shelf life life, than something with more oomph, like the iMac.

Thanks I needed to hear that! although the mini is probably a fine everyday computer I really need more than I have now.. thanks again
post #14 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by not1lost View Post

Thanks I needed to hear that! although the mini is probably a fine everyday computer I really need more than I have now.. thanks again

Remember that the Mac mini is not just one thing. It is a family of computers that run the gamut from the least expensive 2.3 GHz dual core i5-based system starting at $599 to the high-end 2.7 GHz dual-core i7-based system. A quick scan of Geekbench score listings is illuminating. The Geekbench score for the 2.7 GHz i7-2620M-based Mac mini (2011) is 6936. By way of comparison, the 3.6 GHz i5 680-based iMac (2010) has a Geekbench score of 6937. Always take benchmark scores with a grain of salt.
post #15 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by guinness View Post

The Mini is an OK computer, but it's outclassed by an iMac or MP.

You'd expect that though otherwise everyone would just make small PCs. That doesn't stop it being a serious desktop computer though.

It has a quad-core option and both it and the dual-core models are hyper-threaded so the dual-cores behave like quad-cores and the quads behave like 8-cores. The quad-core i5s in the iMacs aren't hyper-threaded. The chips in the Mini and iMac also dynamically over-clock to similar maximum clock speeds (3.1-3.6GHz).

The Mini also takes up to 16GB RAM now, which is plenty of RAM.

If you check out the Mac charts, you can see that the quad i7 Mini in fact outperforms all the i5 iMacs:

http://www.primatelabs.ca/geekbench/mac-benchmarks/

The performance varies between 5,884-12,000 from low-end to generally affordable high-end. I don't think dropping the performance by half makes a machine go from acceptable to unsuitable. In the worst case it's half the speed so you just wait 4 minutes for a complex task instead of 2.

The GPU is different as dropping by half could make a game unplayable but even then, you just drop the resolution. If graphics card x plays a game at 1920 x 1080 and graphics card y is half the speed then it will play the same game at 1024 x 768. It's just not as sharp looking.

Quote:
Originally Posted by not1lost

although the mini is probably a fine everyday computer I really need more than I have now

It seems like the research program you use is the most intensive app you need to run but I'd say that maxing the computer out isn't the way to go. If a program that holds just 2,000 books is running search queries that use up 12GB RAM and maxes out a quad i7, it seems like the software needs tuning/better caching mechanisms. If you specified a search pattern for example, it should only need to open 1 page at a time offset by your pattern size. Once it locates the matches, it can then operate on those results.

Pattern matches could even be run in OpenCL and use the GPU power:

http://wiki.postgresql.org/images/6/65/Pgopencl.pdf

If the queries are interpreted, they can be compiled to C code and could run up to 10x faster. Very few complex problems are solved by horsepower because more horsepower in the consumer space means 2-3x speedup. Adjusting algorithms and using optimised code can jump up 5x-100x.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Winter

I have not been this proud of a computer since my parents bought me my first computer at age 12.

I feel the same way. The aluminium version is a really well designed machine and it's not bad value for money. You get over 75% of the performance of the entry Mac Pro for under 40% of the price.
post #16 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post

The Mini also takes up to 16GB RAM now, which is plenty of RAM.

If you check out the Mac charts, you can see that the quad i7 Mini in fact outperforms all the i5 iMacs:

http://www.primatelabs.ca/geekbench/mac-benchmarks/

It's a bigger boost in benchmarks than real use. Hyperthreading tends to give semi inflated results on benchmarking programs. The reason for the higher benchmarks is that hyperthreading is disabled on quad i5 cpus. It's enabled on dual core i5 cpus and all i7s. Intel is a bit weird with this stuff.
post #17 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by hmm View Post

It's a bigger boost in benchmarks than real use. Hyperthreading tends to give semi inflated results on benchmarking programs. The reason for the higher benchmarks is that hyperthreading is disabled on quad i5 cpus. It's enabled on dual core i5 cpus and all i7s. Intel is a bit weird with this stuff.

The numbers can vary from one benchmark to another. I think Cinebench is a reliable benchmark as it is actually processing a real render and this does show the iMacs to be faster:

Mac Mini i7 = 4.2
http://www.barefeats.com/mini11_01.html
3.1GHz iMac i5 = 4.9
http://www.barefeats.com/imac11b.html

This is showing that the $2,000 iMac is 15% faster than the $1,000 Mini and the Mini is on par with the $1700 iMac.

Some people dismiss the Mini as being a poor desktop simply because it has a 2.0GHz mobile CPU vs the iMac desktop 3.1GHz when those CPUs achieve very similar results.

The iMac is better value due to the GPU but if the iMac is a viable desktop, the Mini is too and is of the headless design some people (myself included) prefer.
post #18 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post


Some people dismiss the Mini as being a poor desktop simply because it has a 2.0GHz mobile CPU vs the iMac desktop 3.1GHz when those CPUs achieve very similar results.

The iMac is better value due to the GPU but if the iMac is a viable desktop, the Mini is too and is of the headless design some people (myself included) prefer.

I never said it was bad. I was trying to address some of the discrepancy between i5 and i7 benchmarks. It can be a little confusing if you aren't familiar with Intel's practices. Dual core i5 = 2 physical, total of 4 logical as opposed to quad i5 where it has 4 physical cores without hyperthreading, so the system sees 4 total cores once again. I am a little surprised at times by how compressed the numbers have become in certain areas. Anyway I can't think of an interesting direction to go with this post so I'll leave it as a basic response.
post #19 of 30
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post

It seems like the research program you use is the most intensive app you need to run but I'd say that maxing the computer out isn't the way to go. If a program that holds just 2,000 books is running search queries that use up 12GB RAM and maxes out a quad i7, it seems like the software needs tuning/better caching mechanisms. If you specified a search pattern for example, it should only need to open 1 page at a time offset by your pattern size. Once it locates the matches, it can then operate on those results.

Pattern matches could even be run in OpenCL and use the GPU power:

http://wiki.postgresql.org/images/6/65/Pgopencl.pdf

If the queries are interpreted, they can be compiled to C code and could run up to 10x faster. Very few complex problems are solved by horsepower because more horsepower in the consumer space means 2-3x speedup. Adjusting algorithms and using optimised code can jump up 5x-100x.



I feel the same way. The aluminium version is a really well designed machine and it's not bad value for money. You get over 75% of the performance of the entry Mac Pro for under 40% of the price.

I havent made up my mind yet but you all are really helping. The Mini is sounding better all the time. Actually I am quite fascinated by it.
As far as your evaluation of my research software I dont doubt it needs some tweaking as they update it often even weekly sometimes. some things it does that you may not have known is that it's not just 2000 books of "just words" each word is "keyed" in several different ways to produce almost unlimited patterns from the structure of the context to the word numbering system keyed differently in different sets of books then there are the morphology of each word it has to consider as well as it compares each word in various languages. It trys to do all this within seconds while at the same time assembling charts and diagrams of whatever the queries may require. Then the it has the ability to reference much of this info with just a mouse over pop up window instantly. It is truly amazing but hard on a computer.

Thanks for all your help the Mac Mini is looking like a more serious contender for my needs. It would be nice to have a machine take up so little space and do so much! like I said before maybe not here but the Pro is a monster and I dint like all in ones.... thanks!
post #20 of 30
Try looking at a Mini in real life. It's quite beguiling. It's sexy little beast. Very touchable too.

With Ivy Bridge it will run cooler with better integrated GPU.

With any look, Apple will broaden the i7 options across the line and offer a better discrete GPU.

Regardless, it's a respectable machine.

I think it could be cheaper. But I'd say that about Apple desktops across all lines.

Lemon Bon Bon.

You know, for a company that specializes in the video-graphics market, you'd think that they would offer top-of-the-line GPUs...

 

WITH THE NEW MAC PRO THEY FINALLY DID!  (But you bend over for it.)

Reply

You know, for a company that specializes in the video-graphics market, you'd think that they would offer top-of-the-line GPUs...

 

WITH THE NEW MAC PRO THEY FINALLY DID!  (But you bend over for it.)

Reply
post #21 of 30
Quote:
This is showing that the $2,000 iMac is 15% faster than the $1,000 Mini and the Mini is on par with the $1700 iMac.

A nice statistic. Something to consider. Bang for buck compared to a mid range iMac and entry Mac Pro.

Lemon Bon Bon.

You know, for a company that specializes in the video-graphics market, you'd think that they would offer top-of-the-line GPUs...

 

WITH THE NEW MAC PRO THEY FINALLY DID!  (But you bend over for it.)

Reply

You know, for a company that specializes in the video-graphics market, you'd think that they would offer top-of-the-line GPUs...

 

WITH THE NEW MAC PRO THEY FINALLY DID!  (But you bend over for it.)

Reply
post #22 of 30
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post


It seems like the research program you use is the most intensive app you need to run but I'd say that maxing the computer out isn't the way to go. If a program that holds just 2,000 books is running search queries that use up 12GB RAM and maxes out a quad i7, it seems like the software needs tuning/better caching mechanisms. If you specified a search pattern for example, it should only need to open 1 page at a time offset by your pattern size. Once it locates the matches, it can then operate on those results.
.

Posting on my iPad 2 windows is doing a system restore..... Aaaaaaahhhhhh!!!!!!!!!!

Now down to business. Take a look at this video of the software at work it will show you more than I can explain here and it's just a sample.....

http://www.logos.com/4
post #23 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lemon Bon Bon. View Post

A nice statistic. Something to consider. Bang for buck compared to a mid range iMac and entry Mac Pro.

The iMac does add value with the display, GPU and kb/mouse but I think the Minis are good value for the performance they offer. I often hear the Mini being considered low power because of its size and it's because people have a hard time accepting that you can get similar performance from one box that is 1/20th the size of another.

The laptops should really demonstrate this by now (Cinebench 5.23):

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9770So2nZ0Q

Compared to the XPS 8300 (Cinebench 4.65):
http://www.hardwareheaven.com/review...urbo-mode.html

Quote:
Originally Posted by not1lost

Take a look at this video of the software at work it will show you more than I can explain here and it's just a sample....

I figured it might be religious texts that were cross-linked with multiple languages. Some of those software packages are fairly pricey (over $4,000 for 1700+ books):

http://www.logos.com/product/10426/l...tfolio-edition

It would be good if they offered a server version of the software. Then you'd just put your high-end PC in the cupboard hooked up to your home network, buy a Macbook Air or iPad and be able to generate search results remotely, in bed or even outside the house.

You could for example be in a church session on wifi or 3G and simply send a search request to your home server and retrieve a page of compiled results. This way you get the high performance per dollar from the PC, the nice user experience from the Mac as well as convenient access anywhere you are.

This is why I think Apple should go the route of Thunderbolt chaining too with smaller Mac Pros. For people who have the money to dedicate lots of hardware to a particular task, being able to simply plug in another machine via Thunderbolt and have it act like a co-processor (effectively increasing processing power linearly without dealing with network processing setup) is a good option to have.
post #24 of 30
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post

The iMac does add value with the display, GPU and kb/mouse but I think the Minis are good value for the performance they offer. I often hear the Mini being considered low power because of its size and it's because people have a hard time accepting that you can get similar performance from one box that is 1/20th the size of another.

The laptops should really demonstrate this by now (Cinebench 5.23):

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9770So2nZ0Q

Compared to the XPS 8300 (Cinebench 4.65):
http://www.hardwareheaven.com/review...urbo-mode.html



I figured it might be religious texts that were cross-linked with multiple languages. Some of those software packages are fairly pricey (over $4,000 for 1700+ books):

http://www.logos.com/product/10426/l...tfolio-edition

It would be good if they offered a server version of the software. Then you'd just put your high-end PC in the cupboard hooked up to your home network, buy a Macbook Air or iPad and be able to generate search results remotely, in bed or even outside the house.

You could for example be in a church session on wifi or 3G and simply send a search request to your home server and retrieve a page of compiled results. This way you get the high performance per dollar from the PC, the nice user experience from the Mac as well as convenient access anywhere you are.

Yes it is a load on the pc. It does store your library in the cloud but can't be run from there it would be nice. They have mobile versions of it but its very limited as far as what i do. and yes I I have a LOT of $$$ tied up in this, I have one of the higher levels...
Thanks for the benchmarks. I have a lot to think about.... Thanks a bunch
post #25 of 30
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post


This is why I think Apple should go the route of Thunderbolt chaining too with smaller Mac Pros. For people who have the money to dedicate lots of hardware to a particular task, being able to simply plug in another machine via Thunderbolt and have it act like a co-processor (effectively increasing processing power linearly without dealing with network processing setup) is a good option to have.

I'm posting on my ipad because my Dell XPS is gone bonkers again and I am doing a compete reformat and reinstall of windows (again) removing a bunch of JUNK this time... I am hating windows more and more...
Anyway, are you saying that this would enagle me to use a dual setup by linking my windows pc with a Mac via TB? therefore increasing the overal power? if so that would be great!
post #26 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by not1lost View Post

Anyway, are you saying that this would enagle me to use a dual setup by linking my windows pc with a Mac via TB? therefore increasing the overal power? if so that would be great!

No, it would be for a redesigned Mac Pro or Mini that could be scaled up in processing by linking them together. The only way to link up the PC would be by networking, which wouldn't be acting like a co-processor but rather a network node.

The software seems to have an API:

http://wiki.logos.com/Logos_4_COM_API

The developers could possibly put a .Net front-end onto that and allow you to submit commands over the network. Having a dedicated machine will allow it to run faster as there wouldn't be any other apps slowing it down. Plus you could be working on a Mac doing all sorts of cool stuff , submit a search and keep working while it's processing on the server. This way, you aren't waiting for it to finish.

Usually if you invest a lot in software, the developers will be prepared to build you custom solutions. It might be worth asking if they could build a server interface you could call from another machine.
post #27 of 30
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post

No, it would be for a redesigned Mac Pro or Mini that could be scaled up in processing by linking them together. The only way to link up the PC would be by networking, which wouldn't be acting like a co-processor but rather a network node.

The software seems to have an API:

http://wiki.logos.com/Logos_4_COM_API

The developers could possibly put a .Net front-end onto that and allow you to submit commands over the network. Having a dedicated machine will allow it to run faster as there wouldn't be any other apps slowing it down. Plus you could be working on a Mac doing all sorts of cool stuff , submit a search and keep working while it's processing on the server. This way, you aren't waiting for it to finish.

Usually if you invest a lot in software, the developers will be prepared to build you custom solutions. It might be worth asking if they could build a server interface you could call from another machine.

sounds interesting! they do have several forums and sugestion avenues. I'll be sure to submit this like you said there are a lot of folks that have invested a lot of money in this software and they are working to improve it all the time. I have used it for several years and it has just gotten better and better and changed a lot. It was good at first but nothing like it is now. Actually the ones on the forums are who have encouraged me to get a Mac saying that the software runs much better on a Mac and doesnt slow down the machine anything like it does windows. well there are a few that say otherwise but you know you always have a few of those in a crowd... by the way... still... working ... on... the ... fresh... install... of windows ... on .. the... Dell....
post #28 of 30
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post

No, it would be for a redesigned Mac Pro or Mini that could be scaled up in processing by linking them together. The only way to link up the PC would be by networking, which wouldn't be acting like a co-processor but rather a network node.

The software seems to have an API:

http://wiki.logos.com/Logos_4_COM_API

The developers could possibly put a .Net front-end onto that and allow you to submit commands over the network. Having a dedicated machine will allow it to run faster as there wouldn't be any other apps slowing it down. Plus you could be working on a Mac doing all sorts of cool stuff , submit a search and keep working while it's processing on the server. This way, you aren't waiting for it to finish.

Usually if you invest a lot in software, the developers will be prepared to build you custom solutions. It might be worth asking if they could build a server interface you could call from another machine.

I was about to ask for any suggetions since you see what I am doing with my machine; what kind of Mac would you all suggest I get ? Lemon bon bon just suggeted an iMac I dont want to over kill but I want to be confident I will be able to use this machine for many years as I will be investing a lot of money in it and I hate changing machines after getting used to one. any suggestions would be helpful. I know I have asked this before but now you know more about what I have and what do so you could make a more informed suggestion. Thanks
post #29 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by not1lost View Post

I want to be confident I will be able to use this machine for many years as I will be investing a lot of money in it and I hate changing machines after getting used to one.

The Mini is the kind of machine you'd want to upgrade often - every year or two - so if you want a machine for a long time, the iMac or Mac Pro are better options. Right now, the Mac Pro is not great value for money and I'd say it was overkill anyway.

If you are after performance more than screen size, the 21.5" model has an i7 CPU option that's faster than the top-end 27" i5.

You'd really want to get a 3 year warranty with the iMac though so that if anything happened to the display, you aren't paying out a lot of money for a repair.

In general, long term investments aren't worthwhile for computers as they tend to go out of date fairly quickly. The 2011 Mini outperforms the 2009 quad-core Mac Pro for example. Hard drives and SSDs are only generally expected to last 5 years tops. Some do last much longer as it depends on the wear but it's not likely that you'll hang onto a machine longer than 5 years.

There should be a new iMac coming at the end of April so I wouldn't consider buying one just now.

If you want to try the Mac environment out, the entry Mini is a great starting point. You can always sell the Mini again when the new iMac is out and you'd lose very little money.
post #30 of 30
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post

The Mini is the kind of machine you'd want to upgrade often - every year or two - so if you want a machine for a long time, the iMac or Mac Pro are better options. Right now, the Mac Pro is not great value for money and I'd say it was overkill anyway.

If you are after performance more than screen size, the 21.5" model has an i7 CPU option that's faster than the top-end 27" i5.

You'd really want to get a 3 year warranty with the iMac though so that if anything happened to the display, you aren't paying out a lot of money for a repair.

In general, long term investments aren't worthwhile for computers as they tend to go out of date fairly quickly. The 2011 Mini outperforms the 2009 quad-core Mac Pro for example. Hard drives and SSDs are only generally expected to last 5 years tops. Some do last much longer as it depends on the wear but it's not likely that you'll hang onto a machine longer than 5 years.

There should be a new iMac coming at the end of April so I wouldn't consider buying one just now.

If you want to try the Mac environment out, the entry Mini is a great starting point. You can always sell the Mini again when the new iMac is out and you'd lose very little money.

Thanks Marvin, some solid advice. I think I'll wait till the end of April or first of June anyway. I've overhauled this Dell again and it's doing ok for now. I stripped it completely and did a fresh install of just windows 7 the drivers and necessary software and left all the Dell junk out. Probably voided the rest of my warranty but oh well... it seems to be snappier and the processor and memory seem to not be working as hard. Dell had a LOT of stuff in that other system that was attached to everything and was totally unnecessary... So it will do for me to wait till the new Macs come out - hopefully soon! I might even eat my words and get another laptop... I looked at the Macbook Pro and I was pretty impressed... Guess I could just slide my monitor over to the side of the desk and use the MBP and it that way, I don't know I am looking at all my options but definitely getting a Mac!
PS
When I said I wanted to use the new Mac for several years I meant 4-5 years like you said technology is moving so fast they are nearly outdated when you walk out the door. and they do wear out when you use them a lot. I use my computer 8-12 hours a day so I dont expect them to last even as long as an average user..
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Current Mac Hardware
AppleInsider › Forums › Mac Hardware › Current Mac Hardware › Is the Mac Mini a serious Desktop Computer?