Mac mini 2018 for designers?


Lord Daz

Lord Daz

New Member
#1
Hello everybody

Unfortunately my MacBook Pro (Retina, 13-inch, Mid 2014) is not enough powerful anymore. I recently worked on some projects with large files in Photoshop and Illustrator and the MacBook has suffered...

My laptop is configured with:

2.6GHz Intel Core i5 processor,
Ram 8 GB 1600 MHz DDR3,
Graphics card Intel Iris 1536 MB

I work with PS, AI, iD and sometimes also with SketchUp Pro 2018. Since I work on different projects at the same time, these software remain always open. I do not do Video Editing or 3D Animation.

Now I've decided to buy a machine that meets my needs. Two options are possible:

Mac mini 2018:

- 3.2 GHz 6-Core Intel Core i7 processor of the 8th generation (Turbo Boost up to 4.6 GHz)
- 8 GB 2666 MHz DDR4 (I'll do a RAM upgrade to 16GB from myself)
- Intel UHD Graphics 630
- 256 GB SSD

or

HP Z2 mini G3

- Intel® Core ™ i7-7700 with Intel® HD Graphics Card 630 (3.6 GHz, up to 4.2 GHz with Intel® Turbo Boost Technology, 8 MB cache, 4 cores)
- DDR4-2400 SDRAM, not ECC, 16 GB (1 x 16 GB)
- HP Z Turbo Drive, 256GB, PCIe, Solid State Drive
- Integrated: Intel® HD graphics card 630 Dedicated: NVIDIA® Quadro® M620 (2 GB)

I will connect this machine to my monitor Eizo CS2420. Which one would you recommend to me? Mac mini or HP? I do not have to stay with Apple. Since I already have a MacBook, I think it would be better just to avoid compatibility issues between Files-Projekts. I also wonder if the Mac mini with Intel UHD Graphics 630 is powerful enough...

Thanks a lot for your help!
L. D.
 
Levi

Levi

Moderator
Staff member
#2
HP Z2 Mini is a better machine based on the specs although you're paying a premium for the quadro GPU inside it, you could get an 'equal' device with a geforce in it for probably half the price. Personally I'd pick this but then I work in windows due to my software so would have no compatibility issues.

Personally I feel the mac mini is overpriced for it's original target market but it's apple so they seem to be price gouging on everything at the moment.

In all honesty though, before investing in new hardware have you considered doing a 'clean up' of the OS/programs etc and adding more ram (edit for clarity) of existing macbook pro?
 
Last edited:
bigdave

bigdave

Moderator
Staff member
#3
Firstly... Have you seen how complicated it is to replace the RAM in a Mini? It's a complete machine strip down job! Certainly not worth the hassle. mini RAM replacement video

Second... Whichever machine you buy you'll need to factor in a few hundred for a decent size external SSD. I run a Mac Pro which also has a 256Gb internal SSD and even with a 1TB Samsung external SSD for everything except Apps, I run into internal storage issues due to PS, Ai etc.. using the internal SSD as a scratch disk.

Then youve got to buy a monitor which will set you back another £400+ for a decent one.

By the time you've done you're well into top spec iMac terratory.
 
Lord Daz

Lord Daz

New Member
#5
In all honesty though, before investing in new hardware have you considered doing a 'clean up' of the OS/programs etc and adding more ram (edit for clarity) of existing macbook pro?
Unfortunately is not possible to Upgrade the Ram on the MacBook Pro.

Firstly... Have you seen how complicated it is to replace the RAM in a Mini? It's a complete machine strip down job! Certainly not worth the hassle. mini RAM replacement video
You are right. But I don't think it is so complicate. You need just time and a bit of feeling for the Hardware...

As I already have a Macbook, I think I have no other choice to by a Mac mini. To Work with a PC and a MacBook together could give some problems in the Workflow. May be I have to by two times the licenses for the softwares and I don't know, if I will have compatibility problems if I work with two OS at the same time at the same project. Do you have any experience about?

If I buy the HP Z2 Mini, I have to sale the MacBook and buy another PC Laptop.

What do you think about?

Thanks,
L.D.
 
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