2012 Mac Mini Wish List?

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  • Reply 81 of 393

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by nht View Post


    At this point my primary wish is that the damn thing shows up sooner rather than later.





    AMEN. Although some would argue that you can't rush perfection. (sort of) lol

  • Reply 82 of 393
    winterwinter Posts: 1,238member
    There is no chance of having 16 GB SO-DIMMS by the time the Haswell Mini (if there is one of course) comes out is there?
  • Reply 83 of 393

    If Apple are serious about the Mac Mini being used as a Home Theatre PC they should consider adding or improving the following features:


    1. improving the DVD Player software so it doesn't crash if the DVD has a slight scratch.


    2. having a global control to increase the font & icon sizes so that applications can be comfortably viewed and controlled on a HD screen from typical TV viewing distances.  A doubling of font & icon sizes would be about right as a starter.


    3. upgrading the inbuilt IR received to increase the range of IR commands possible.  This would allow use of more sophisticated remotes and get around the 6-button limitation of the Apple Remote.


    4. increase HDD size to 2TB minimum.


    5. fix the problem with excessive noise from the optical drive when at high speed, or provide inbuilt utility to limit speed,


    6. make a Bluetooth Apple keyboard with inbuilt touchpad and scroll wheel emulation for zooming.  The Logitech MediaBoard Pro comes close but doesn't have the Apple Command key.

  • Reply 84 of 393
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,621moderator
    winter wrote: »
    There is no chance of having 16 GB SO-DIMMS by the time the Haswell Mini (if there is one of course) comes out is there?

    You won't need them if Panasonic, HP and Sharp have their way:

    http://www.techinitio.com/reram-memristor-based-memory-to-replace-dram/
    http://www.eetimes.com/electronics-news/4235304/Elpida-announces-ReRAM-chip
    http://silvertonconsulting.com/blog/2012/05/15/reram-to-the-rescue/
    http://techon.nikkeibp.co.jp/english/NEWS_EN/20120126/203992/

    They are aiming to get ReRAM into production in 2013. It might be too expensive to replace SSD initially but it can act as a cache for SSD. Apple could for example ship a blade SSD with 16GB ReRAM and 256GB standard NAND cheaper than the current MBP with instant boot times and obviously free up the space previously used for RAM chips. It would be upgradable to any amount of RAM that your wallet will allow and that 3rd parties will offer.
  • Reply 85 of 393
    wizard69wizard69 Posts: 13,377member
    XMac would be nice. It is interesting that the rumor mill is sort of dead when it comes to the Mini so maybe something different is in the works.
    macronin wrote: »
    I, for one, would love to see a middle ground model of headless desktop Macs; so I guess that makes the count of forum members wanting an xMac move up to 21…
    I'm willing to bet there are hundreds of thousands of potential XMac buyers out there. They just need the right machine at the right price.
    I could see a market for a mid-range unit that would cater to the gaming/HTPC market. My dream specs…?

    Quad-core CPU
    Yep, this is the current sweet spot for desktop machines. I wouldn't object to a six core machine though as the step up model.
    16GB RAM
    Discrete GPU w/1GB RAM (minimum amount of RAM, I personally would prefer a GPU from the higher end of the scale & 2GB of RAM)
    I can get buy with 8GB but certainly would not object to 16GB
    256GB PCI Express-based SSD (OS & apps)
    That is tight these days. However a very fast SSD is a requirement.
    Four HDD bays (hot-swap not required, but easy to access for adding new drives would be a requirement)
    Yes! Those 4 bays though shouldn't include the boot drive.
    Hardware RAID (on the main logic board would probably be cheaper, but as a PCI Express card would be best if it needed replacing)
    This isn't needed with multi core processors. Software based RAID works really good nd keeps XMac out of the workstation market. I don't see XMac as a replacement for a Mac Pro type machine.
    Blu-Ray player/DVD burner (not everyone wants to buy movies from the iTunes Store, and I like all the extras that come on DVDs & Blu-Ray)
    We all know how far that is going to go
    HDMI out w/7.1 audio support

    Now, I realize this sounds a lot like a pimp Mac Pro, but I envision it more like a complementary component to an A/V receiver, with a similar size.
    In this case big is not better.
    Add some Razer gear (Naga Hex mouse, Nostromo keypad & BlackWidow Ultimate keyboard), a 70" HDTV & an Onyko THX HTiB (Home Theater in a Box) system; I would be good to go…

    The Mac Mini with an external RAID drive could almost fill this role, that is as a an advance HTPC. But external RAID drives have their own issues so I'd really would like a small Mac that supports internal RAID. I've however have almost gotten to the point where an external RAID of some sort may be purchased in the near future. Drobo has some new hardware coming on the market that looks to be real interesting.
  • Reply 86 of 393
    wizard69wizard69 Posts: 13,377member
    Good question. Unfortunately I don't know the answer to that question. We would all be far better off if the Mini switched to standard DIMMS. Yes they take up more space and power but they are cheaper for a given capacity.

    As to predicting what future computing hardware will be using for main memory that is really tough right now. There are many technologies in the works some of which would be more redical departures that others.

    Near term Micron, Intel and others are working on a 3D DRAM standard that should be a big step up in capacity and speed. However this and other technologies being explored don't get their speed from traditional interfaces. Plug in modules may go the way of the DoDo or change dramatically. The problem isn't just that the interfaces are new, it is that they are frantically faster which becomes a signal integrity and timing problem. In the future expect that main memory will be mechanically and electrically close to the CPU.
    winter wrote: »
    There is no chance of having 16 GB SO-DIMMS by the time the Haswell Mini (if there is one of course) comes out is there?

    Your best bet is to search the net to see what you come up with. SO-DIMMS may have a limitation on addressable RAM.
  • Reply 87 of 393
    hmmhmm Posts: 3,405member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post



    XMac would be nice. It is interesting that the rumor mill is sort of dead when it comes to the Mini so maybe something different is in the works.

    The Mac Mini with an external RAID drive could almost fill this role, that is as a an advance HTPC. But external RAID drives have their own issues so I'd really would like a small Mac that supports internal RAID. I've however have almost gotten to the point where an external RAID of some sort may be purchased in the near future. Drobo has some new hardware coming on the market that looks to be real interesting.


    External RAID only has issues if you're budget conscious. It's possible to put together a very stable solution, but things like UPSs are even more important, and you need to buy one without a flaky controller. If you're using a RAID level that stripes parity or splits it off to a dedicated drive, or going for a higher capacity raid, controller type and drive type/firmware become much bigger issues. I'd also take external RAID any day over that ass of a RAID card Apple offers for the Mac Pro. They should truly be ashamed of themselves there. It's a problematic product and they don't offer much in the way of support.


     


    Quote:

    Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post



    XMac would be nice. It is interesting that the rumor mill is sort of dead when it comes to the Mini so maybe something different is in the works.

    The Mac Mini with an external RAID drive could almost fill this role, that is as a an advance HTPC. But external RAID drives have their own issues so I'd really would like a small Mac that supports internal RAID. I've however have almost gotten to the point where an external RAID of some sort may be purchased in the near future. Drobo has some new hardware coming on the market that looks to be real interesting.


    I hate Drobo so much. They are not very helpful if anything goes wrong, and they use a proprietary file system.


    Quote:

    Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post



    Good question. Unfortunately I don't know the answer to that question. We would all be far better off if the Mini switched to standard DIMMS. Yes they take up more space and power but they are cheaper for a given capacity.

    As to predicting what future computing hardware will be using for main memory that is really tough right now. There are many technologies in the works some of which would be more redical departures that others.

    Near term Micron, Intel and others are working on a 3D DRAM standard that should be a big step up in capacity and speed. However this and other technologies being explored don't get their speed from traditional interfaces. Plug in modules may go the way of the DoDo or change dramatically. The problem isn't just that the interfaces are new, it is that they are frantically faster which becomes a signal integrity and timing problem. In the future expect that main memory will be mechanically and electrically close to the CPU.

    Your best bet is to search the net to see what you come up with. SO-DIMMS may have a limitation on addressable RAM.




    I doubt they'll switch to dimms on the mini given spatial concerns. The imac also uses sodimms, even with its larger board. Regarding the potential of a 6 core imac, the only hex core cpus available use a different socket type. Most applications still have horrible scaling, so I doubt there is a large push for more X86 cores.

  • Reply 88 of 393
    winterwinter Posts: 1,238member
    wizard69 wrote: »
    Your best bet is to search the net to see what you come up with. SO-DIMMS may have a limitation on addressable RAM.

    Well Ivy Bridge can handle 32 GB of RAM and even some quad core Sandy Bridge mobiles can handle 32 GB. I'm curious if we'll have DDR4 memory and then we'll start out with 16 GB SO-DIMMS from there. I know 16 GB DIMMS are on the way though.
  • Reply 89 of 393
    nhtnht Posts: 4,522member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Marvin View Post





    There's a rumour of something happening in 2 weeks:

    http://www.macrumors.com/2012/06/22/vacation-blackout-hints-at-late-july-release-for-os-x-mountain-lion/

    Mountain Lion will certainly ship this month and there's a suggestion of the 19th. There wouldn't be much point in releasing the new machines today for example and then ship the new OS in 2 weeks, requiring people to pay for the upgrade. Most likely the new iMacs and Minis will ship with Mountain Lion.


     


    Sigh...19th...tomorrow...here's hoping.

  • Reply 90 of 393
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,621moderator
    nht wrote: »
    Sigh...19th...tomorrow...here's hoping.

    Might be a bit longer:

    http://edition.cnn.com/2012/07/16/tech/innovation/apple-store-mountain-lion/index.html

    They typically do the whole Tuesday/Wednesday release for some reason so it makes more sense to be next week.
  • Reply 91 of 393
    nhtnht Posts: 4,522member


    Yah...next Tuesday makes more sense...

  • Reply 92 of 393
    wizard69wizard69 Posts: 13,377member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by nht View Post


    Yah...next Tuesday makes more sense...



     


    There had better be some hardware released with Mountain Lion.   I'm getting a bit tired of Apples approach to the desktop.

  • Reply 93 of 393
    rbrrbr Posts: 631member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post



    XMac would be nice. It is interesting that the rumor mill is sort of dead when it comes to the Mini so maybe something different is in the works.

    I'm willing to bet there are hundreds of thousands of potential XMac buyers out there. They just need the right machine at the right price.

    Yep, this is the current sweet spot for desktop machines. I wouldn't object to a six core machine though as the step up model.

    I can get buy with 8GB but certainly would not object to 16GB

    That is tight these days. However a very fast SSD is a requirement.

    Yes! Those 4 bays though shouldn't include the boot drive.

    This isn't needed with multi core processors. Software based RAID works really good nd keeps XMac out of the workstation market. I don't see XMac as a replacement for a Mac Pro type machine.

    We all know how far that is going to go

    In this case big is not better.

    The Mac Mini with an external RAID drive could almost fill this role, that is as a an advance HTPC. But external RAID drives have their own issues so I'd really would like a small Mac that supports internal RAID. I've however have almost gotten to the point where an external RAID of some sort may be purchased in the near future. Drobo has some new hardware coming on the market that looks to be real interesting.




    OK, here we go.


     


    You can add me to the list of people who would be very interested in an X-Mac/Tower. It should have a LOT of drive bays for a RAID 5 (or even RAID 10) array and be capable of taking lots of RAM. A Photoshop machine can easily use 32 GB (4x8 GB) or even more. One of the things I have against the iMac is that there are no PCIe slots. There are some very fast PCIe SSDs on the market now (some are bootable too!). Thunderbolt can not make up for that. Oh, and quit using those screwy hard drives. Absolutely nobody is happy about the proprietary hard drives in the iMac. If Ive would quit trying to cram 8 gallons in a 5 gallon tank, he would not have some many thermal design problems. Products that overheat because of poor design are his signature achievement.


     


    Frankly, what does Apple think the Hackintosh movement is about anyway? Memo to Apple: offer a product like the towers people are building because you don't offer what they want/need.


     


    If you want to see some hurt put on DROBO, take a look at Scott Kelby's I'm Done with DROBO article. (More than 300 comments.)


     


    While external RAID is a useful way to deal with storage problems for the Mac Mini, it is not the performance solution that a proper PCIe based external RAID system can be. Thunderbolt is only 2 lanes (one each way). Still, it is much better than FW 800. Nobody knows why Apple did not embrace eSATA (and USB 3 for that matter) a long time ago. Apple's external interfaces were left behind for quite a while.


     


    Back to the Mini, a good solid 4 core CPU is a nice starting point. Getting the optical drive out is essential if the design is to actually make use of the limited space. It would not hurt a thing if the Mini grew up a little bit and had space for RAM, one PCIe slot and so on. Some of the PC small form factor motherboards have these sorts of features in a foot print that is not a whole lot larger than the current Mac Mini.


     


    Cheers

  • Reply 94 of 393
    hmmhmm Posts: 3,405member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by RBR View Post




    OK, here we go.


     


    You can add me to the list of people who would be very interested in an X-Mac/Tower. It should have a LOT of drive bays for a RAID 5 (or even RAID 10) array and be capable of taking lots of RAM. A Photoshop machine can easily use 32 GB (4x8 GB) or even more. One of the things I have against the iMac is that there are no PCIe slots. There are some very fast PCIe SSDs on the market now (some are bootable too!). Thunderbolt can not make up for that. Oh, and quit using those screwy hard drives. Absolutely nobody is happy about the proprietary hard drives in the iMac. If Ive would quit trying to cram 8 gallons in a 5 gallon tank, he would not have some many thermal design problems. Products that overheat because of poor design are his signature achievement.



    Internal raids do not typically support Raid 5. If they do, they don't support it very well. This is the kind of thing where you're often better off with enterprise grade drives, especially with deployments over a couple terabytes if you want it to be stable. Their firmware timings are different. You need a good controller too. Software based raid is terrible there due to write hole issues. Low end solutions are best left to something like RAID 0, 1, or 10 rather than 5 or any of the other parity based solutions.

     It's just not that great for trying to build something stable in a cheap solution. In terms of PCIe SSDs, they'd need high write cycles to be appropriate for somethign like Raid 5. I noticed you said "or even RAID 10" when it's actually a less complex configuration. It's just that a mirror lends a level of redundancy to striped data. Ideally an odd number of drives would allow for a hot spare so as not to stress out the controller if something fails. Low end RAID solutions don't have amazing fault tolerance.


     


    Regarding Scott Kelby, I've told people that drobo sucks for years. When I read back some of my comments on here regarding things I dislike, I sound like such a hateful person :D.


     


    Regarding the Mini, my impression has always been that Apple doesn't care. They like closed machines that are easy to support, which is unfortunate when you're trying to build a fully functional solution at times. I'm serious about RAID 5 though. It doesn't make an excellent low end solution, and you absolutely need a UPS with RAID so it doesn't crash after a power outage.

  • Reply 95 of 393


    My problem with the Mac Mini is it is built compact with underpowered 'laptop' parts shall I say? I don't care about the size, but I want a Mac that doesn't have a display built in, but with desktop parts. But not as expensive as the mac pro!


     


    My wish list:


    Quad Core / 6 Core i7s


    16 / 32 GB RAM max


    Dual HDDs minimal. 


    Discrete Graphics with 1 GB VRAM


     


    EDIT:


    Also an optional ODD

  • Reply 96 of 393
    rbrrbr Posts: 631member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by hmm View Post


    Internal raids do not typically support Raid 5. If they do, they don't support it very well. This is the kind of thing where you're often better off with enterprise grade drives, especially with deployments over a couple terabytes if you want it to be stable. Their firmware timings are different. You need a good controller too. Software based raid is terrible there due to write hole issues. Low end solutions are best left to something like RAID 0, 1, or 10 rather than 5 or any of the other parity based solutions.

     It's just not that great for trying to build something stable in a cheap solution. In terms of PCIe SSDs, they'd need high write cycles to be appropriate for somethign like Raid 5. I noticed you said "or even RAID 10" when it's actually a less complex configuration. It's just that a mirror lends a level of redundancy to striped data. Ideally an odd number of drives would allow for a hot spare so as not to stress out the controller if something fails. Low end RAID solutions don't have amazing fault tolerance.


     


    Regarding Scott Kelby, I've told people that drobo sucks for years. When I read back some of my comments on here regarding things I dislike, I sound like such a hateful person :D.


     


    Regarding the Mini, my impression has always been that Apple doesn't care. They like closed machines that are easy to support, which is unfortunate when you're trying to build a fully functional solution at times. I'm serious about RAID 5 though. It doesn't make an excellent low end solution, and you absolutely need a UPS with RAID so it doesn't crash after a power outage.





    In no particular order, a UPS should be a given on any computer system, save, perhaps, a laptop.


     


    I quite agree with your comments about RAID drives. Anything less than an enterprise quality drive is an invitation to trouble, if not outright disaster. A hardware RAID card (which needs another PCIe slot) is the best solution. RAID 5 has a number of advantages over RAID 0. RAID 10 is OK, but RAID 6 has a number of drawbacks despite its seeming appeal of requiring the failure of two drives before the loss of data. The truth is that RAID 50 is very nice, but many people simply don't like the complexity or cost. Its main drawback, like that of any mirrored system is that, if there is a corruption of some sort or malware problem, the problem is more or less instantly replicated on the mirrored drive. The advantage of such systems is the reduced probability of down time. Most of us can deal with a RAID 5 and a separate backup plan (along with a time machine) more easily and cost effectively. All of this is more effectively accomplished in a tower.


     


    I suspect you are right that Apple doesn't really care about the Mac Mini. I have been told by several sources that the company was astonished at the sales of the units and the uses the customers found for it. I have seen banks of Minis used as backup servers at remote locations which I feel reasonably certain in saying had never crossed the minds of the Mini design team. Apple really should listen to the customer more. It's good business.


     


    Cheers

  • Reply 97 of 393
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,621moderator
    rbr wrote:
    Memo to Apple: offer a product like the towers people are building because you don't offer what they want/need.

    The people who build their own machines don't represent a large enough market. iMacs have fast GPUs, IPS displays, support up to 32GB RAM like any i5/i7 CPU. Thunderbolt makes up for the lack of PCI slots no matter how much people want it not to. Thunderbolt isn't just a fast connection, it is a multi-protocol PCI port, they just put it on the outside. If Apple built consumer towers again, it would just be wasted effort.
    rbr wrote:
    While external RAID is a useful way to deal with storage problems for the Mac Mini, it is not the performance solution that a proper PCIe based external RAID system can be.

    In what way? You're still limited by the drive speeds and it's not a good idea to put loads of drives in RAID 0. Thunderbolt speeds are more than adequate for anything storage related.
    rbr wrote:
    Nobody knows why Apple did not embrace eSATA (and USB 3 for that matter) a long time ago. Apple's external interfaces were left behind for quite a while.

    eSATA is very limited - it's just a storage protocol and doesn't officially support power. It will die out in favour of USB 3.
    hmm wrote:
    Regarding the Mini, my impression has always been that Apple doesn't care.

    They didn't care initially but the unibody redesign made it obvious they do. The latest Mini is a work of art and it's perfectly suitable for the vast majority of desktop use. With 16GB RAM and an SSD, the only area it is lacking in is graphics but even then, the dGPU model performs ok.

    It's easy to imagine Apple offering a quad-core desktop with an option of a high-end desktop GPU and PCI slots just like every other manufacturer for $500-1000 but Apple builds iconic computers and this inexpensive desktop couldn't be iconic because there's no way to simplify its design to epitomize its purpose without still falling short of the requirements of the target audience.

    When you look at an iconic machine and wish that it was built the way everybody else builds them, you're missing the point about why they are built that way in the first place. Make Marilyn Monroe a brunette, take off the beauty spot, put her in a drab outfit and you have a nobody. That's what you are asking Apple to do with the iMac.

    At this stage in time, there is no missing model in Apple's lineup, they just have one model too many. One that doesn't fit the pattern of Apple's design and it will be made to fit. When this happens, it will make it clear once and for all.
  • Reply 98 of 393
    mactacmactac Posts: 315member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by not candunc View Post


    My problem with the Mac Mini is it is built compact with underpowered 'laptop' parts shall I say? I don't care about the size, but I want a Mac that doesn't have a display built in, but with desktop parts. But not as expensive as the mac pro!


     


    My wish list:


    Quad Core / 6 Core i7s


    16 / 32 GB RAM max


    Dual HDDs minimal. 


    Discrete Graphics with 1 GB VRAM


     


    EDIT:


    Also an optional ODD





    Put that in an easy to open case and that is the type of Mac I want to buy.

  • Reply 99 of 393
    wizard69wizard69 Posts: 13,377member
    rbr wrote: »

    OK, here we go.

    You can add me to the list of people who would be very interested in an X-Mac/Tower. It should have a LOT of drive bays for a RAID 5 (or even RAID 10) array and be capable of taking lots of RAM. A Photoshop machine can easily use 32 GB (4x8 GB) or even more. One of the things I have against the iMac is that there are no PCIe slots. There are some very fast PCIe SSDs on the market now (some are bootable too!). Thunderbolt can not make up for that. Oh, and quit using those screwy hard drives. Absolutely nobody is happy about the proprietary hard drives in the iMac. If Ive would quit trying to cram 8 gallons in a 5 gallon tank, he would not have some many thermal design problems. Products that overheat because of poor design are his signature achievement.
    The idea of an XMac is not to make a Mini Mac Pro. The goal is midrange performance in a desktop box.
    Frankly, what does Apple think the Hackintosh movement is about anyway? Memo to Apple: offer a product like the towers people are building because you don't offer what they want/need.
    I don't think Apple cares. People who like to tinker will build such machines anyways. What bothers me though is that Apple doesn't recognize just how badly the current desktop lineup sucks. It is like they are totally out of touch with their users.
    If you want to see some hurt put on DROBO, take a look at Scott Kelby's I'm Done with DROBO article. (More than 300 comments.)
    I read the article and comments with interest and frankly a lot of what Scott had to say was garbage! Disk arrays fail no matter who they come from. I've seen plants with hundreds of people twiddling their thumbs waiting for a recovery from a RAID drive failure. All the wishful thinking in the service contract not with standing.

    Frankly much of the complaining about Drobo seems to come from non IT types that don't understand the technology and have no backup or recover plan in place. Drobo is no more nor no less perfect than other RAID solutions.
    While external RAID is a useful way to deal with storage problems for the Mac Mini, it is not the performance solution that a proper PCIe based external RAID system can be. Thunderbolt is only 2 lanes (one each way). Still, it is much better than FW 800. Nobody knows why Apple did not embrace eSATA (and USB 3 for that matter) a long time ago. Apple's external interfaces were left behind for quite a while.
    True, but you need to realize that many, maybe the vast majority, do not need RAIDs for high performance. A RAID connected via TB or Ethernet is a perfectly fine solution for many users.
    Back to the Mini, a good solid 4 core CPU is a nice starting point. Getting the optical drive out is essential if the design is to actually make use of the limited space. It would not hurt a thing if the Mini grew up a little bit and had space for RAM, one PCIe slot and so on. Some of the PC small form factor motherboards have these sorts of features in a foot print that is not a whole lot larger than the current Mac Mini.

    Cheers

    About that Mini, my main problem with it is that it is far to castrated to be considered a good value. If it supported another TB interface and the right hardware came on the market to partner with the Mini I might be able to see some value in the box. As you note though it needs more capability RAM wise and far better processors.
  • Reply 100 of 393
    hmmhmm Posts: 3,405member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by RBR View Post




    In no particular order, a UPS should be a given on any computer system, save, perhaps, a laptop.


     


    I quite agree with your comments about RAID drives. Anything less than an enterprise quality drive is an invitation to trouble, if not outright disaster. A hardware RAID card (which needs another PCIe slot) is the best solution. RAID 5 has a number of advantages over RAID 0. RAID 10 is OK, but RAID 6 has a number of drawbacks despite its seeming appeal of requiring the failure of two drives before the loss of data. The truth is that RAID 50 is very nice, but many people simply don't like the complexity or cost. Its main drawback, like that of any mirrored system is that, if there is a corruption of some sort or malware problem, the problem is more or less instantly replicated on the mirrored drive. The advantage of such systems is the reduced probability of down time. Most of us can deal with a RAID 5 and a separate backup plan (along with a time machine) more easily and cost effectively. All of this is more effectively accomplished in a tower.


     


    I suspect you are right that Apple doesn't really care about the Mac Mini. I have been told by several sources that the company was astonished at the sales of the units and the uses the customers found for it. I have seen banks of Minis used as backup servers at remote locations which I feel reasonably certain in saying had never crossed the minds of the Mini design team. Apple really should listen to the customer more. It's good business.


     


    Cheers



    My point regarding RAID 5 was that it's definitely more finicky when it comes to consumer grade solutions. Raid 0, 1, and 10 may still be feasible even without enterprise firmware. Just grab caviar black drives + roc card or eSATA host card and software RAID. Make sure eSATA card and port multiplier chipset are made by the same manufacturer so you don't run into conflicts. My point was that when you started getting into parity stripes or dedicated parity drives (basically anything that splits off parity whether it's byte or block level), hardware and setup requirements become more stringent if you want an absolutely stable rig. If you're dealing with enormous archives of data, you don't really have to keep all of it on such a solution. Anyway  this isn't really my area of expertise. I just know what to avoid in most circumstances, and built in Raid 5 functionality is not really something you'd see in a consumer level desktop.


    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Marvin View Post







    It's easy to imagine Apple offering a quad-core desktop with an option of a high-end desktop GPU and PCI slots just like every other manufacturer for $500-1000 but Apple builds iconic computers and this inexpensive desktop couldn't be iconic because there's no way to simplify its design to epitomize its purpose without still falling short of the requirements of the target audience.

    When you look at an iconic machine and wish that it was built the way everybody else builds them, you're missing the point about why they are built that way in the first place. Make Marilyn Monroe a brunette, take off the beauty spot, put her in a drab outfit and you have a nobody. That's what you are asking Apple to do with the iMac.

    At this stage in time, there is no missing model in Apple's lineup, they just have one model too many. One that doesn't fit the pattern of Apple's design and it will be made to fit. When this happens, it will make it clear once and for all.


    I didn't so much mean this. My issue with the discrete graphics is that they still do not perform well, and their vram allocation misses the minimum mark for many things. It doesn't need a high end solution, just a better solution. Improvements to integrated graphics may eventually turn this aspect into a non issue, but it's a design flaw today. It annoys me somewhat that the mini is still languishing on this update.

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