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Author Topic: New Mac Mini or 2017 iMac?  (Read 844 times)

azjosho

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New Mac Mini or 2017 iMac?
« on: October 31, 2018, 12:32:55 am »

Like many I was hoping to pick up an updated iMac today. Now looking at a couple options and would appreciate some advice. I'm not nearly as savvy with this stuff as most of you seem to be.

I use my computer almost exclusively for photo editing in Lightroom and Photoshop... that's really about it but I sometimes will have a youtube video or Netflix going on one of the monitors if I'm not working too hard. I currently have the following:
Macbook Pro 15 inch Late 2013
2 external 27" monitors. NOT 4k or 5k but the monitors have been solid for photo editing and proofing for print. One SRGB and one full RGB. The screen on the MacBook is busted but it still outputs to the externals fine.
512 SSD
2.3 GHz Intel Core i7
16 GB 1600 MHz DDR3
NVIDIA GeForce GT 750M 2048 MB
Intel Iris Pro 1536 MB
The two options I am considering:
27" Imac - $2099
3.4GZ - Quad Core - 7th Gen i5
8GB (I will increase RAM on my own)
512 SSD
Radeon Pro 570
Mac Mini - $1299
3.0 GHZ 6 core - 8th Gen i5
8GB (I will increase RAM on my own)
512 SSD

Will I notice a substantial increase in performance with either of the two new options or should I just keep running what I have? I think i'm limited by the 16GB Ram in my current laptop as I work with some huge stitched RAW files sometimes and often am working on multiple images from a shoot all at once. Nothing I can do about the RAM in the laptop... and the screen is busted on the laptop so I can't take it anywhere these days. Is there a better option I should consider?

Thanks!
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Chairman Bill

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Re: New Mac Mini or 2017 iMac?
« Reply #1 on: October 31, 2018, 05:53:59 am »

If the Mac Mini is the same as the late 2014 models, the RAM isn't user-upgradeable. You'll need to give Apple loadsamoney to add it for you.

TommyWeir

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Re: New Mac Mini or 2017 iMac?
« Reply #2 on: October 31, 2018, 06:21:12 am »

Why were you looking to upgrade? Is the current setup (which closely parallels my own) letting you down in some way?

The two options you outline do not seem to be a big improvement to me.  Also noting that your busted laptop screen  means you won’t end up with a freed up laptop.

I would see an advantage in a beefier GPU or processor as your principal aims.  Neither of these do that particularly.  The Radeon is twice the graphics card the NVIDIA is, but I’d be debating whether the shift was worth the money. 

That again comes down to whether your setup isn’t working for you. 

There’s the Blackmagic eGPU to consider for perhaps $1200 or indeed those new iPad Pros for the same money. And you’d have a portable computer back...
« Last Edit: October 31, 2018, 06:27:27 am by TommyWeir »
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kers

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Re: New Mac Mini or 2017 iMac?
« Reply #3 on: October 31, 2018, 07:01:46 am »

If the Mac Mini is the same as the late 2014 models, the RAM isn't user-upgradeable. You'll need to give Apple loadsamoney to add it for you.

it is user upgradeable up to 64 GB -
I think it is a good 2018 upgrade.
weak point - e-GPU and NAS extra to make it a real computer.
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Chairman Bill

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Re: New Mac Mini or 2017 iMac?
« Reply #4 on: October 31, 2018, 07:55:54 am »

it is user upgradeable up to 64 GB -

That's good to know. My late 2012 iMac has issues and needs a new hard drive, but I was thinking about an upgrade early next year. We should see an upgrade to the iMac soon, so I'll wait. The big question is what monitor I should pair with a new Mac Mini.

faberryman

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Re: New Mac Mini or 2017 iMac?
« Reply #5 on: October 31, 2018, 08:02:18 am »

That's good to know. My late 2012 iMac has issues and needs a new hard drive, but I was thinking about an upgrade early next year. We should see an upgrade to the iMac soon, so I'll wait. The big question is what monitor I should pair with a new Mac Mini.
As best as I can tell, the new Mac Mini supports 4K but not 5K.

jacland

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Re: New Mac Mini or 2017 iMac?
« Reply #6 on: October 31, 2018, 09:11:34 am »

As best as I can tell, the new Mac Mini supports 4K but not 5K.
From Apple's Thunderbolt description:
Up to four 4K displays or two 5K displays with iMac Pro and 15-inch MacBook Pro; up to three 4K displays or one 5K display with Mac mini; up to two 4K displays or one 5K display with iMac, MacBook Air, and 13-inch MacBook Pro; one 4K display with MacBook.
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faberryman

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Re: New Mac Mini or 2017 iMac?
« Reply #7 on: October 31, 2018, 01:08:17 pm »

From Apple's Thunderbolt description: Up to four 4K displays or two 5K displays with iMac Pro and 15-inch MacBook Pro; up to three 4K displays or one 5K display with Mac mini; up to two 4K displays or one 5K display with iMac, MacBook Air, and 13-inch MacBook Pro; one 4K display with MacBook.
Yeah. I am just not sure how they get to 5K. The Intel 17-8700 3.2GHz chip with UHD 630 on-board graphics lists 4K as the maximum resolution.

Joe Towner

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Re: New Mac Mini or 2017 iMac?
« Reply #8 on: October 31, 2018, 03:21:54 pm »

First question is if all your apps and such are going to be happy on 10.14 Mojave since you'll be forced into it.

Next, do you want the portability you had with the laptop prior to the screen going wonky?

Adding an eGPU puck would solve any graphics issues you have, and the TB3-NVMe sled would give you plenty of external storage.

Flip side is the iMac is a purchase and done type of thing.  You can upgrade the RAM easily, and add the external monitor of your choice.  Have you sat in front of the 5K screen?  Same TB3 connection ability.
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