View Full Version : Question about Mac mini

10-01-2008, 10:22 AM
I'm currently using a Macbook pro, 2GHZ, 2G RAM with a 23" Apple screen - everything runs fine. However the Macbook isn't mine and will have to be handed back shortly. I can't afford the big Mac pro machines (and don't have the space for one) so was looking at getting a Mac Mini, 2 GHZ with 2G memory (as I have a 23" screen already that rules out the iMacs). Is anyone running Lightwave on this config - does it work ok and is there anything I should look out for? Is it as fast as the Macbook? Thanks for any and all advice.

10-01-2008, 11:22 AM
I've not run LW on a Mac Mini, but maybe I can offer something for consideration.

I don't know if you have a hard line budget, but for what you'd spend on Mac Mini you may consider getting a refurb MacBook from Apple. The Mini does not have great onboard GFX and only gives you 64MB VRAM. Apple also does not consider upgrading the RAM on a Mini to be "user serviceable", so they force you to either pay their bloated cost for RAM, or void your warranty and do it yourself.

MacBook can also give you 4GB RAM, instead of 2 on the Mini. Newegg has some nice prices on 4GB RAM kits for not much more than their prices for 2GB kits, and much less than Apple wants for their 4GB. One kit I looked at recently was 7x less than what Apple is asking.

Anyways, something to think about.

10-01-2008, 01:10 PM
hi there,

i have a mac mini that i use as my media server, its hooked up to a 40" sony x tv and i have used the trial version of lw9.3 on it just to see what it looked like on the big screen so to speak. It handles the models quite well and the display is quite responsive within reason. obviously its fairly poor at rendering given that my workstation is a quad core clocked at 3.6ghz.. but for general moderate use its ok..

I know this isn't technically accurate, but you can think of a mac mini as a macbook (ordinary white one, not the pro) in a desktop tin.. the mobo, gfx and cpu are all mobile variants as used in laptops.. so the performance will be very similar to the macbook.

I have put the ram in my mini upto 2gig, i did it myself, but u need to be computer literate and handy it dismantling things! The macbook will upgrade ram easier and as already stated can go to 4gig.

I wouldn't worry about the 2gig limit of the mini tho, as a 4gig scene would probably kill the mac mini anyways even if it had enough ram, power would be seriously lacking... so 2gig is probably a sensible limit for a machine of such power.

so in summary, mac mini is probably good for casual use for moderately sized / complexity scenes.

hope this helps..


10-02-2008, 02:02 AM
I use the MacMini for work with LW and it works fine so far, no problem with large scenes or endless rendertimes although the 2GHz MacMini gets pretty hot. You can upgrade to 4Gb Ram if your scenes are bigger, but its not as easy as upgrading the MacBook, and a faster and bigger harddrive would also be nice.

10-06-2008, 08:41 AM
Is running OS X a requirement for you, or are you looking for a small form factor system?

If the later, check out AOpen XC mini, this is the one I have (MP965-D): http://global.aopen.com/products_detail.aspx?ctgr=74&Auno=2445&mdstl=262