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Mac Mini for Generic Development?

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I see the hype about the Mac Pro pill thingy, but I am still kind of interested in the Mac Mini. I have a decent Windows box with GPU acceleration, but to make an iPad app I need some kind of Mac for final publishing. The Mac Mini seems like a nice price point for just basic iPad development and Unity work.

 

Has anyone used a Mac Mini for 3D and or compositing work? I realize it is intel graphics based so there will be no cuda available but I wonder how it performs for general work?

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For general and programming, its just fine.

 

It wouldn't be ideal if working with video / graphics, but if you are just making an animated button for a video game, its totally fine.

 

 

Consider getting a current model iMac refurb for around 1k over the mac mini though. There are decent (mobile version) video cards in those, as apposed to integrated graphics.

 

 

Make sure you get something current(ish) though. I just picked up a super-old 13" imac (1st gen intel) just so I could have Coda for web-admin stuff, but it won't run or install a damn thing. I can't even update the OS. Worthless.

 

J has a point, but keep in mind that creative software is developed for the hardware available at the time. Check the recommended system requirements of the software you plan on using.

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Funny this thread should pop up. I was just thinking that maybe I should make a mac mini render farm at home, and maybe wait for the 2nd gen Mac Pro that was just announced.

 

We got a few of the latest MacMinis (i7 2.6Ghz,16GB Ram) this spring

for offloading our workstations CPU's (2008 MacPro's)

It's a very lean and clean set up for Cinema4D NET.

Only the power cords connected and run over WiFi

and you can put them on their side on the MacPro

taking "no space".

One MacMini equals one of our MacPro's in NET render speed.

I'd guess the ratio wouldn't be that good for a newer MacPro

other than keeping it free for work.

Not much help for AE thou, we put some Cuda cards

and SSD's on PCI card in them (Sonnet TempoPro for dual SSD's)

in the wait for the some new MacPro's

Cheers

Lennart

Edited by tcastudios

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That is 4 macminis, the 16GB RAM was more of a safe than sorry thing.


We where working with 5k+ renders , some with huge textures/pict series as well.


At that particular job we connected them via the second ethernet port and


a router. For more than 4 Clients that is also a good idea.



OP, sorry for the derail..



Cheers


Lennart

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Thanks for the feedback. Also the refub tip is nice to remember as well.

 

@tcastudios: Can you really put a cuda card in the mac mini? I thought they were kind of like a black box that you could not change?

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