The smallest desktop computer in the world within a few minutes were the centre of attention of the public. It happened on 23 October 2012, at the theater of California in San Jose, capital of Silicon valley. And nothing bad happened…
That day was represented the 10th consecutive update to the Mac mini. But perhaps it had some value. Usually he was quietly updated, not showing on the stage, often even without a press release. As if something hesitate. Or, more like it, knowing that he will still buy – in my opinion it is one of the best inventions by Apple.
Bought it even when he lagged behind better-known counterparts. Although when he was in the first series, bought it willingly. Unfortunately, data on its sales is not publicly available, Apple is obliged to report on their performance, but for fiscal authorities sales of specific product lines do not matter.
And suddenly, the spotlight fell on its tiny enclosure, in a brilliantly decorated hall one of the best theaters in California. And moment of glory. More precisely, almost two minutes.
Video. Two minutes of fame Mac mini starts from 00:24:51: (duration 01:12:43)
He was one of the first Macs supported Fusion Drive (hybrid drive from Apple), but Phil Schiller was saving the news for the launch of the new generation iMac. And anyway, he didn’t mention the Fusion Drive is almost nothing. Only intrigued.
Of the three options, Mac mini (Late 2012) Fusion Drive supports only one, it was one that was not mentioned at all.
Just introduced the “new Mac mini”, and moved on to the next, more important topic…
This is the tenth part of a series about the Mac mini, previous here:
The first part: Major debut 2005: headless Mac;
Second part: In not listed (Mac mini Late 2005);
Part three: Mac mini, Solo and Duo;
The fourth part: the Mac mini: classified ad…;
Fifth part: 07.08.07: and another thing…;
Sixth part: Mac mini (Early 2009): the return of dark horse…;
Seventh part: a New server for OS X. the Mac mini, October 2009…;
Eighth part: Unibody Mac mini, June 2010;
The ninth part: the Mac mini 2011: again for $ 599 and two times faster…
Hybrid drives are used since time immemorial (even before the broad implementation of the SSD). In 2008, it is time for their blossoming. Producers of traditional hard drives built-in advanced cache drives based on flash memory for the smart was developed software which helps to combine a small amount of SSD with hard disk (usually RAID).
SSDs was smaller, faster read and write, due to the lack of moving parts in the design they were also more reliable. Cost is more on the order, and then the two – and dropping very slowly.
Hybrid solutions are cheaper, significantly accelerated the read and write – but before the SSD it was far. From the General public these quirks of enlightened consciousness was distant as alpha Centauri. Representatives of the advanced part of society has decided that Apple, though late, but still went for the leaders in the industry. Most likely they use SRT (Intel Smart Response Technology) – they thought.
And it was wrong. Apple found an original solution. The first (shallow) experiments with the “Apple” of the hybrid technology found that the speed of reading and writing Fusion Drive… not inferior to SSD. At all. Breaking the laws of nature! Could it be?
Understood. Experts have shipped the Mac with Fusion Drive for months, managed to take a course for “geniuses” from the Apple retail Store – alas, Apple magic exists, and even extraterrestrial reptilians does not involved in this. Have a Fusion Drive found flaws. Not without difficulty, she was forced to “go crazy”. Many just relieved now.
FD (Fusion Drive) is a single logical volume that combines the SSD and HDD (hard disk drive). In the Mac mini for 799 dollars amounts to 128 Gigabytes and 1 Terabyte. To the casual observer (user) it was a single device (disk), a volume of 1.1 Terabytes.
From the user was only required to choose the FD when buying a computer and use that disk. Theoretically, the software automatically redistributed files between fast (SSD) and slow (HDD) memory, depending on how often one or the other file was used. In fact, everything was a bit more difficult, but about Core Storage (a technology introduced in OS X Lion) and about moving the blocks To 128 we did nothing.
The performance of SSD is almost an illusion. While on SSD within a logical volume has enough space to accommodate the incoming data, the data is simple and austere copied him. And until circumstances allowed it, was still there.
When the fast part of the logical volume was filled up to a certain limit, the data for which the longest time no one spoke went into the slow part. Because the most intelligent people (unable to understand the file system) data, as a rule, were relatively few, they have been dealing with SSD.
In fact, the FD was doing the same thing that many of us were already doing manually. SSD was made to place the operating system, programs and often used files. Everything else is stockpiled in the vast open spaces of the HDD. FD did it automatically, often exactly as it should – and the only way which was accessible to the masses. Without their participation. BIU.
Mac mini (Late 2012)
Online store the new Mac mini has been presented with three initial configurations, with conventional numbers on the price tags, 599, 799 and 999 dollars. Two configurations “just Mac mini”, business and economy class, and one server configuration. Outwardly indistinguishable from one another, much like inside.
The same Unibody-case, no optical drive (external was $ 79), weighing 1 kg 220 g, with dimensions 3,6х19,7х19,7 cm 3.6 cm is the height. Mac mini in Apple terminology was considered a “cuboid”. If you put each other 5,472 Mac mini, would make a cube.
Wi-Fi 802.11 n (compatible 802.11 a/b/g), 450 Mbps and Bluetooth 4.0 built – in.
Communication with the outside world also the same in all Macmini6,1 (Mac mini with only 2-core Ivy Bridge) and Macmini6,2 (all others, including the server version, with a 4-core Ivy Bridge):
The only difference from the previous Mac mini: to place four USB 2.0 connectors are the same externally, four universal connector (USB3.0/USB2.0).
In the lower part of the body – twist-off hatch provides access to the insides of the computer:
Upgrade RAM or clean the fan from the inside of dust in a single movement from the user. Convenient.
All models and Mac mini (Late 2012) as part of the initial configuration was only 4 GB PC3-12800 (1,600 MHz) DDR3 SO-DIMM in our online shop proposed increase RAM size to 8 and up to 16 Gigabytes. It seems that 16 GB was the maximum size that these Mac mini could work without problems. I grabbed them, set more than not even trying.
Ports HDMI and Thunderbolt without any problems connected to two displays, the first with a resolution of up to 1920×1200, to the second up to 2560×1600 pixels. Intel HD Graphics 4000, an integral part of all mobile Ivy Bridge was never considered a worthy processor for “real” games or other applications with high requirements to graphics, but to support external displays, no complaints there.
Supplied preloaded with Mac OS 10.8.2.
Mac mini “server”
The initial configuration was two, they belonged to two different models, with 2-and 4-core processors.
2-nuclear model of class “economy” used Intel Core i5 2.5 GHz (i5-3210M), cache third level 3 MB, the ability to dynamically increase clock speed to 3.1 GHz.
Hard disk 500 GB (5 400 rpm), and two SATA cables III, of which I was the only one. Online store no option set change drives or install a Fusion Drive or upgrade to a more powerful CPU was not offered. But the cost of this model is only $ 599, and was quite efficient.
4-core models used Intel Core i7 2.3 GHz (I7-3615QM) cache third level 6 MB, with the ability to dynamically increase the clock frequency to 3.3 GHz.
The basic configuration was a drive capacity of 1 Terabyte (5 400 rpm), which in the Configurator, you can overwrite on the SSD volume of 256 GB for $ 300, or Fusion Drive from the SSD 128 GB and HDD 1 TB (5 400 rpm), 250.
It cost 799$.
For $ 100 you instead of a Intel Core i7 2.3 GHz install Intel Core i7 2.6 GHz (I7-3720QM), third level cache 6 GB turbo frequency of 3.6 GHz. It was only in the Configurator online store: CPU tightly soldered to the motherboard and replace it after the acquisition was impossible.
Once due to high life expectancy Macs Apple was selling them for 50-70% less than they could. It seems to be true.
Two SATA cables III can be used in more creative way: SSD 512 GB and disk 2 or 3 Terabytes managed manually. Unfortunately, it was not me.
Mac mini “server”
On reflection, I left the quotation marks in the subtitle.
The same Intel Core i7 2.3 GHz (I7-3615QM) cache third level 6 MB, turbo 3.3 GHz bostom. For $ 100 (only in the online store) it can be replaced by Intel Core i7 2.6 GHz (I7-3720QM). Details about “no server”, they are the same to the last comma.
The main differences between the Macmini server 6,2 from the usual:
- package consisted of the application Server (for OS X Mountain Lion), which can be purchased in the Mac App Store for only $ 49.99
- in the initial configuration was two drives with capacity of 1-Terabyte (5 400 rpm), with the option of replacing them with one or two SSD volume of 256 GB, for 200 and $ 600
- the lack of support for Fusion Drive (but it can be arrange on your own)
- price — server option was worth $ 999
One of the places my work I was just that, with 16 Gigabytes of RAM and two Terabyte drives in each. Impressions the most favorable.
To be continued…