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2014 Mac mini Wishlist - Page 8

post #281 of 1463
Originally Posted by Junkyard Dawg View Post
Only chumps and fools buy RAM through Apple.  I can't believe this is even a discussion.  

 

So you haven't read any of the benefits of onboard RAM?

Originally Posted by helia

I can break your arm if I apply enough force, but in normal handshaking this won't happen ever.
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Originally Posted by helia

I can break your arm if I apply enough force, but in normal handshaking this won't happen ever.
Reply
post #282 of 1463
Quote:
Originally Posted by Winter View Post

The $799 and $999 minis have the BTO option to 2.6 GHz. I'm asking if that really makes a difference.

When it's the same CPU class, the clock speed is a good indicator of performance so the 2.6GHz should be 2.6/2.3 = 1.13 (13% faster best-case). To figure out how much quicker it is time-wise you divide the time by that number so if something takes 60 minutes on the 2.3GHz, it will take 60/1.13 = 53 minutes on the 2.6GHz. The scores here show the performance difference vs an old iMac and Mac Pro:

http://www.barefeats.com/minivmp.html

Cinebench = 6.8/6.2 = 1.097; Luxmark = 104/95 = 1.095. So real-world is closer to 10% faster. I don't think that's too bad for $100 but I personally wouldn't bother.
post #283 of 1463
Quote:
Originally Posted by Junkyard Dawg View Post

Only chumps and fools buy RAM through Apple.  I can't believe this is even a discussion.  

In the near future you won't have a choice, at least not for the factory install bank. The trend in the industry is to soldered on RAM to support high performance memory systems.
post #284 of 1463
Quote:
Originally Posted by Junkyard Dawg View Post

Only chumps and fools buy RAM through Apple.  I can't believe this is even a discussion.  


This isn't as big a deal as you may want to make it. What matters is total system cost and what it can do. I would view this as a big picture. If the costs are trending out of your reach or comfort zone, you may want to examine the offerings of other brands before your next purchase. I keep an eye on them every generation.

post #285 of 1463

If we're talking soldering RAM to the logic board, then that probably won't be an issue.  The rMBP has plenty of RAM, but will Apple do the right thing with a sub-$1000 Mini?  Probably.  The current strategy of offering base models with paltry amounts of RAM is designed to force purchases of RAM from Apple, but when RAM is no longer an upgradable component, Apple will be motivated to include enough RAM so as not to tarnish the image of OS X.  

 

Also note that currently the base Mini has plenty of RAM for consumers.  It's designed for light web browsing and email, and 4 GB is more than enough for such usage.  The high end iMac is problematic, as a $2000+ computer with only 8 GB RAM is questionable, but there is no reason to believe Apple wouldn't double the amount once it's soldered.  It's only 8 GB because Apple wants chumps to CTO more memory.

 

Anyways any of you who have a problem with Apple's amount of soldered memory on the mini should consider another brand of computer, lol...

post #286 of 1463
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Junkyard Dawg View Post

If we're talking soldering RAM to the logic board, then that probably won't be an issue.  The rMBP has plenty of RAM, but will Apple do the right thing with a sub-$1000 Mini?  Probably.  The current strategy of offering base models with paltry amounts of RAM is designed to force purchases of RAM from Apple, but when RAM is no longer an upgradable component, Apple will be motivated to include enough RAM so as not to tarnish the image of OS X.  

Also note that currently the base Mini has plenty of RAM for consumers.  It's designed for light web browsing and email, and 4 GB is more than enough for such usage.  The high end iMac is problematic, as a $2000+ computer with only 8 GB RAM is questionable, but there is no reason to believe Apple wouldn't double the amount once it's soldered.  It's only 8 GB because Apple wants chumps to CTO more memory.

Anyways any of you who have a problem with Apple's amount of soldered memory on the mini should consider another brand of computer, lol...

The 15" rMBP has plenty of RAM though the 13" with it being only maxed out at 8 GB is an issue I feel.

I disagree that the base Mini has enough RAM. With a dual-core Ivy Bridge processor, you can do a lot more than light web-browsing, e-mail, and Facebook. The $799 model and server model should have an option for 16 GB of RAM. I suppose in the future with soldering, make the base model only carry the option of 8 GB.

I personally don't have that much of a problem with the soldered memory, it's more the graphics I have an issue with. Hopefully Haswell is a nice boost. I don't expect GT 650M but we'll see what happens.
post #287 of 1463
Quote:
Originally Posted by Winter View Post

The 15" rMBP has plenty of RAM though the 13" with it being only maxed out at 8 GB is an issue I feel.
This is a significant limitation on the 13". It does make you wonder if it is a technical issue or a marketing issue. Knowing Apple it is a marketing issue
Quote:
I disagree that the base Mini has enough RAM. With a dual-core Ivy Bridge processor, you can do a lot more than light web-browsing, e-mail, and Facebook.
Apple has always been excessively thin with RAM in these machines. It is sad because it puts the hardware and OS in a bad light and it makes Apple look cheap.
Quote:
The $799 model and server model should have an option for 16 GB of RAM. I suppose in the future with soldering, make the base model only carry the option of 8 GB.
I would hope that any future system with soldered RAM would also allow for a memory module install. The DIMM would likely be slower than the soldered RAM.
Quote:
I personally don't have that much of a problem with the soldered memory, it's more the graphics I have an issue with. Hopefully Haswell is a nice boost. I don't expect GT 650M but we'll see what happens.

I'm concerned about graphics myself but I'm really hoping that GPU performance in Haswell is that step increase in performance that is "good enough". That means solid OpenCL support, decent 3D, and drivers that actually work.
post #288 of 1463
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

I'm concerned about graphics myself but I'm really hoping that GPU performance in Haswell is that step increase in performance that is "good enough". That means solid OpenCL support, decent 3D, and drivers that actually work.

Hold out a bit of hope but don't hold your breath. : P
post #289 of 1463
Quote:
Originally Posted by Winter View Post

Hold out a bit of hope but don't hold your breath. : P

If Intel can't deliver then it is time for Apple to switch to AMD. I know this horse has been beaten to death but many users of the Mini would be better served by AMDs better GPU performance.
post #290 of 1463

You can have only 8 gigs of ram in the mac mini 2011 model.Not 16.
 

post #291 of 1463
Originally Posted by marvfox View Post
You can have only 8 gigs of ram in the mac mini 2011 model.Not 16.

 

 

Apple tends to do that.

Originally Posted by helia

I can break your arm if I apply enough force, but in normal handshaking this won't happen ever.
Reply

Originally Posted by helia

I can break your arm if I apply enough force, but in normal handshaking this won't happen ever.
Reply
post #292 of 1463
Thread Starter 
I wouldn't be against an AMD processor run Mac mini but I wonder how long Apple's contract with Intel is for.
post #293 of 1463
Originally Posted by Winter View Post
I wouldn't be against an AMD processor run Mac mini but I wonder how long Apple's contract with Intel is for.

 

Who says there's a term limit on any sort of contract? Who says they even want AMD?

Originally Posted by helia

I can break your arm if I apply enough force, but in normal handshaking this won't happen ever.
Reply

Originally Posted by helia

I can break your arm if I apply enough force, but in normal handshaking this won't happen ever.
Reply
post #294 of 1463
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

Who says there's a term limit on any sort of contract? Who says they even want AMD?

>:O Why must you always question me? ;-;

In all seriousness, I am happy with Intel from what I see. Having said that, I would like better graphics in the mini and I think we all would. I always have that little bit of hope that a good RPG might be released that I actually want to play. Currently RPGs that I am interested in it (only one in fact) is going to be coming out for the 3DS and in Japan so I have to import it (which I am) in order to play it.
post #295 of 1463
Originally Posted by Winter View Post
In all seriousness, I am happy with Intel from what I see. Having said that, I would like better graphics in the mini and I think we all would.

 

I mean, what does AMD provide that Intel doesn't? Since we're talking about the Mac Mini, I assume the question can be tailored specifically toward the low end.

 

We need a pros/cons chart. What do we give up by leaving Intel (obviously Thunderbolt), and what do we gain (if anything) with AMD?

 

If Intel wants to stick around, they'll do whatever they have to do to improve their integrated graphics. ARM stuff is a bigger threat to them than AMD could ever be.

Originally Posted by helia

I can break your arm if I apply enough force, but in normal handshaking this won't happen ever.
Reply

Originally Posted by helia

I can break your arm if I apply enough force, but in normal handshaking this won't happen ever.
Reply
post #296 of 1463
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

I mean, what does AMD provide that Intel doesn't? Since we're talking about the Mac Mini, I assume the question can be tailored specifically toward the low end.
AMD has far better GPUs integrated into their APUs as the call them. The flip side is less performance relative to the CPU subsection of the chip. The reality is that Intel didn't even catch up to AMDs GPUs from last years APUs. Beyond that you have better video decode circuits, far better 3D and very strong OpenCL support. AMD has done a lot of work porting code to their APU's GPU for acceleration so for some uses AMDs chips are in fact a faster solution.

In a nut shell AMDs chips are a good solution for machines that need a good GPU but don't have space for an discrete GPU.
Quote:
We need a pros/cons chart. What do we give up by leaving Intel (obviously Thunderbolt), and what do we gain (if anything) with AMD?
The only thing you really gain is a far better GPU. The value of this is dependent upon the user but AMDs CPUs are a bit slower so it ends up being a wash in some cases. GPU intensive apps though run far better on AMDs chips at lower power draws than Intels.
Quote:
If Intel wants to stick around, they'll do whatever they have to do to improve their integrated graphics. ARM stuff is a bigger threat to them than AMD could ever be.
Yep I agree 100%. However AMD could be a greater threat if they come out with an ARM based chip with one of their new advanced GPU cores for the embedded market.
post #297 of 1463
Thread Starter 
post #298 of 1463
I have no doubt in my mind that this would help the Mini a great deal. Of course Apple would have to cough the willingness to actually use the chip. In a nut shell this is the number one problem, Apple being willing to go the extra mile to support performance. The second issue would likely be power but this is a long standing Mini issue.

Interestingly they mention an ultra low power variant. This could have a huge impact on the Mac Book AIRs and the 13" MBP.

The big problem here will be cost. In is my understanding that GT3 would mean a multi chip module with the extra Silicon being memory chips. This could potentially be rather expensive however since both AMD and Intel have problems with memory bandwidth on their APUs this is likely a very good solution for that problem.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Winter View Post

http://www.fudzilla.com/home/item/30242-haswell-with-gt3-graphics-comes-in-q3-13

How could this help the mini?

It would likely lead to better performance than we saw on the 2011 Mini with GPU.
post #299 of 1463

When I went to the Apple store they told me it would take only 8 gigs of ram. Not 16.
 

post #300 of 1463
Originally Posted by marvfox View Post
When I went to the Apple store they told me it would take only 8 gigs of ram. Not 16.

 

Yep, they lied. That's Apple's official amount of RAM, so that's what they'll tell you. It's wrong.

Originally Posted by helia

I can break your arm if I apply enough force, but in normal handshaking this won't happen ever.
Reply

Originally Posted by helia

I can break your arm if I apply enough force, but in normal handshaking this won't happen ever.
Reply
post #301 of 1463
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

 

Yep, they lied. That's Apple's official amount of RAM, so that's what they'll tell you. It's wrong.

 

This isn't that uncommon. They certified it with the configurations that they actually ship. You can install 16GB, but they will not officially support that. This really isn't that uncommon.

post #302 of 1463
Thread Starter 
wizard69 - Won't it be based on what processors are used in the Mini to determine what GT chip is used?
post #303 of 1463
Quote:
Originally Posted by Winter View Post

wizard69 - Won't it be based on what processors are used in the Mini to determine what GT chip is used?

Well yeah if I understand your question correctly. GT3 is one of three GPU options for Haswell from what I understand. So Apple will have toe option of different Haswell processors with differing GPu capabilities to put into the Mini.

My concern here is Apples reluctance to do the Mini right. Thus GT3 only means something to potential Mini buyers if Apple actually implements it in the Mini. History is against us here.
post #304 of 1463
Originally Posted by hmm View Post
This isn't that uncommon. They certified it with the configurations that they actually ship. You can install 16GB, but they will not officially support that. This really isn't that uncommon.

 

Yep. They've been doing it since the early '90s.

Originally Posted by helia

I can break your arm if I apply enough force, but in normal handshaking this won't happen ever.
Reply

Originally Posted by helia

I can break your arm if I apply enough force, but in normal handshaking this won't happen ever.
Reply
post #305 of 1463
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

Well yeah if I understand your question correctly. GT3 is one of three GPU options for Haswell from what I understand. So Apple will have toe option of different Haswell processors with differing GPu capabilities to put into the Mini.

My concern here is Apples reluctance to do the Mini right. Thus GT3 only means something to potential Mini buyers if Apple actually implements it in the Mini. History is against us here.

Well if they included a certain quad-core processor, wouldn't the GT3 automatically be a part of it or does it work like the nVidia GeForce 320M except with Intel and its own chips.
post #306 of 1463
Quote:
Originally Posted by Winter View Post

Well if they included a certain quad-core processor, wouldn't the GT3 automatically be a part of it or does it work like the nVidia GeForce 320M except with Intel and its own chips.

Well yes if they use a quad core configured with the GT3 subsystem then the Mini would get GT3. The problem is that not all of Intel's quad core Haswells will be coming with GT3. I think this is fairly straight forward to understand, Apple would have to be willing to use a processor chip that contains GT3. As I've said Apple history here is pretty clear, they almost always castrate the Minis performance relative to every other machine they sell. So while GT3 would Be great in a Mini I don't hold out a lot of hope.
There is also the issue of heat from a GT3 equipped Haswell but that is another issue.
post #307 of 1463
Thread Starter 
Remember how the Haswell processors leaked back in December and you had the MX and two MQ models. Probably the CTO i7 MQ that they use for the GT3. One processor will be available with the faster graphics but most people won't know. That's my call. Thoughts?
post #308 of 1463
Quote:
Originally Posted by Winter View Post


I disagree that the base Mini has enough RAM. With a dual-core Ivy Bridge processor, you can do a lot more than light web-browsing, e-mail, and Facebook. The $799 model and server model should have an option for 16 GB of RAM. I suppose in the future with soldering, make the base model only carry the option of 8 GB.
 

That's not the purpose of the Mini.  Apple wants you to buy an iMac or MBP if you do more than email and light surfing.  

 

The mini is just a bait and switch product.  It's designed to demo OS X to new Mac users, and once they run into the limits of the hardware Apple expects them to throw out the mini and buy an iMac or MBP.  If Apple wanted a sub-$1000 computing solution, they would use desktop components and make it larger, though obviously things like the video card would still be non-upgradable.  Or at least, Apple would just sell a headless iMac in the sub-$1000 range.  

 

I do agree that 8 GB is possible at the low end when Apple finally solders RAM to the logic board.  That would be fine for most uses today.  

 

I actually wouldn't be surprised if Apple just EOLed the entire desktop lineup.  If they cared about desktops, they wouldn't have botched the iMac release during Xmas shopping season.  They would have introduced the new display tech with the TB display and then migrated it to the iMac.  But the goal I suspect is to sell TB displays to laptop users, with the iMac being a test product for which sales aren't so important to Apple.  It could simply be rank incompetence, but nobody's been fired yet so that seems unlikely.

post #309 of 1463
Thread Starter 
I was a new Mac user and the thing is I feel I have not even begun to scratch the surface of my Mac mini. I used a netbook for light web surfing and e-mail and I reached the limitations pretty easily. The mini offers a lot more in my opinion especially with the quad-core processor they put in this time around.

I am most certainly buying a Haswell mini. I will try and go for a quad-core if I can afford it and if not than I will settle for a dual-core.
post #310 of 1463

The Mini has come a very long way in the last couple of years!    Much of the negativity around the machine is directly the result of rather poor models of the past.    The Minis single biggest limitation is the lack of a good GPU which continues to lock that machine out of the midrange workstation market. So if you are a CAD user or do other design work the Mini is a tough sell.  

Quote:
Originally Posted by Winter View Post

I was a new Mac user and the thing is I feel I have not even begun to scratch the surface of my Mac mini. I used a netbook for light web surfing and e-mail and I reached the limitations pretty easily. The mini offers a lot more in my opinion especially with the quad-core processor they put in this time around.

I am most certainly buying a Haswell mini. I will try and go for a quad-core if I can afford it and if not than I will settle for a dual-core.

Honestly if you want to hold a machine longer than a couple of years I'd go for quad core and not even consider dual core.   Everybody has a different buying strategy so it is up to you.  

post #311 of 1463
Thread Starter 
I wasn't sure if I should post this here or the Tim Cook thread. I suppose here is fine.

The mini as it looks now can handle decent GPU but could it have handled it with a quad-core processor as well in that unibody design or would they have to stick with dual core as with 2011?

I think if they went with the 2.9 GHz Ivy Bridge dual-core i7 (3520M), a GeForce 640M with 1 GB of memory would have been perfect. Or they could have put 512 MB in it and made 1 GB for the iMac if they chose to.
post #312 of 1463
Quote:
Originally Posted by Winter View Post

I wasn't sure if I should post this here or the Tim Cook thread. I suppose here is fine.

Seems fine here.
The mini as it looks now can handle decent GPU but could it have handled it with a quad-core processor as well in that unibody design or would they have to stick with dual core as with 2011?

Maybe not. This is kinda the point though, if the Mini is power supply or fan limited to the point it can handle another ten to twenty watts then fix that issue. Users are paying a lot of money for the upper end models of the Mini, models that don't offer a lot for that extra money, so give us a little more value.
I think if they went with the 2.9 GHz Ivy Bridge dual-core i7 (3520M), a GeForce 640M with 1 GB of memory would have been perfect. Or they could have put 512 MB in it and made 1 GB for the iMac if they chose to.

 

Dual core chips with a discrete GPU would certainly be better than no discrete GPU at all, at this time. However dual CPU machines don't offer a lot of longevity any more. Apps are becoming more and more threaded and people run a lot more processes on their machines these days so I'm highly biases towards quad cores as minimal purchases for a primary workstation. Now I said at this time above because there is a strong wind blowing that will change things dramatically. That wind is SoC technology. As such we will hit a tipping point real soon where a discrete GPU won't be required. I'm just not sure when that will happen, Haswell sounds good of course, but I have zero trust here when it comes to Intel and their GPUs. So it is a wait and see situation, if Haswell doesn't do it in 2013, we will likely see something in 2014 that satisfies many users GPU needs. Interestingly, maybe not surprisingly, AMD is way ahead of Intel here. Their APU technology just keeps getting better and often so out performs Intels offering that it is the recommended processor for solutions using a single chip. Of course if your workload is CPU bound AMD is harder to justify but today many many apps, including common ones like web browsers are GPU accelerated. In the end Intels CPU advantage is really a niche. So yeah right now a GPU as you describe would have made a lot of sense in at least one Mini. Apple didn't go that way so we are out of luck.
post #313 of 1463
Thread Starter 
So should Apple in your eyes go full AMD on a mini go for the combo as with the 2011 mid-range model. If so, what processor and graphics chip is feasible?
post #314 of 1463
Quote:
Originally Posted by Winter View Post

So should Apple in your eyes go full AMD on a mini go for the combo as with the 2011 mid-range model. If so, what processor and graphics chip is feasible?

AMD's graphics are better just now but you also have to think about Thunderbolt. Maybe it would pass certification but it's not clear that it would.

Haswell might be able to come close enough to AMD's GPUs anyway.
post #315 of 1463
Quote:
Originally Posted by Winter View Post

So should Apple in your eyes go full AMD on a mini go for the combo as with the 2011 mid-range model. If so, what processor and graphics chip is feasible?

 

No. None. Nay. Never.

 

http://www.behardware.com/articles/868-1/mobile-cpus-amd-a8-and-a10-vs-core-i5-and-i7-llano-trinity-sandy-and-ivy-bridge.html

post #316 of 1463

I'd prefer a discrete GPU chip from NVidia or AMD.      That is today and simply because you need such to get the type of performance I'd want to see in the Mini.   It won't be long until I change my tune  and look towards the integrated GPU solutions but right now if I had a choice it would be a discrete GPU.   However that discrete chip needs at least 512 MB of VRAM and 1 GB would be better.     If I had no choice and integrated GPU was mandatory then I'd rather see an AMD chip in the machine.  

Quote:
Originally Posted by Winter View Post

So should Apple in your eyes go full AMD on a mini go for the combo as with the 2011 mid-range model. If so, what processor and graphics chip is feasible?

When you ask the question of which is feasible I look at the question with reservation.    I'd much rather see Apple punt and simply make a midrange Mini with a good discrete GPU chip and build a housing and power supply to support it properly.     It makes no sense to specify specific chips as that is always in flux and at best we won't get a new Mini until late this year.   At that point a Haswell chip of some sort coupled with whatever GPU is a good fit at the time.  

post #317 of 1463

Thunderbolt is an issue but I find it hard to believe that Apple would have signed up for exclusive TB use and not cover their butt when it comes to implementing the interface on alternative hardware.    You would have to believe at the very least that Apple has the option to put TB on ARM hardware.  If they didn't get that written into the contract somebody is asleep at the wheel at Apple.  

Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post


AMD's graphics are better just now but you also have to think about Thunderbolt. Maybe it would pass certification but it's not clear that it would.

Haswell might be able to come close enough to AMD's GPUs anyway.

Close to today's AMD GPUs sure but what happens when AMD puts a Southern Islands core in their SoC?    Remember AMD is developing SoC tech just as fast if not faster than AMDs solutions.   Intel has never come close to AMD Zacate based chips for example.  AMD is suffering right now but that also means aggressiveness.   

post #318 of 1463

Even though the linked article is dated it still supports my argument, AMD does better than Intel for GPU focused apps.   The article is dated though because compiler technology can improve Piledriver performance significantly.    On top of all of that AMDs chips will run much cooler and provide a smoother user experience.   Further Apple isn't exactly using top of the line performance in the Mini anyways so the CPU gap isn't that great.   

 

In the end it comes down to this, you pay less for AMDs chips and get better video performance especially in 3D.  

post #319 of 1463
Quote:

Originally Posted by wizard69

 

Further Apple isn't exactly using top of the line performance in the Mini anyways so the CPU gap isn't that great.   

Apple is using exactly the same cpus in the Mac mini than in the 13" and 15" MBPs. If Apple isn't exactly using top of the line performance in the Mini, there are still using very good Core i5/i7 parts with the best igpu Intel has to offer. But that doesn't matter, the results are the same: the cpu gap with AMD is HUGE!

 

Just look at geekbench scores those parts:

Intel Core i7-3720QM 2600 MHz (4 cores) 10132 

Intel Core i7-3615QM 2300 MHz (4 cores) 9037 

Intel Core i5-3210M 2500 MHz (2 cores) 5742 

Intel Core i5-2410M 2300 MHz (2 cores) 5052

AMD A10-4600M 2300 MHz (4 cores) 4235

 

Or cpu benchmarks:

Intel Core i7-3720QM @ 2.60GHz 8,468 

Intel Core i7-3615QM @ 2.30GHz 7,481 

Intel Core i5-3210M @ 2.50GHz 3,818 

Intel Core i5-2410M @ 2.30GHz 3,196

AMD A10-4600M APU @ 2.30GHz 3,072

 

The cpu in the $799 Mac mini is more than two times faster than the best mobile APU AMD offers. And that Intel cpu is not even top of the line performance. But even desktop apus can't achieve the cpu performance of an Intel mobile quad-core cpu. I'd rather take a small "hit" in graphics than to cut the cpu performance in half.

 

There's a reason why those APUs are cheap, they suck! Even AMD officially compares them to Intel's Core i3 parts, not Core i5, let alone Core i7. Yeah, they have nice graphics, so what?

post #320 of 1463
Thread Starter 
If I wanted discrete graphics than I would pay for discrete graphics but I think for the cost, they should offer some more options. Not having 2 GB in the 650M with the retina MacBook Pro to deal with the retina display was a mistake in my view.

Haswell will be a decent step up from Ivy Bridge, Rockwell from Haswell, Skylake from Rockwell, and Skymont from Skylake.
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