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 Post subject: New Mac mini - <13w at idle?
PostPosted: Wed Mar 04, 2009 10:24 pm 
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http://store.apple.com/us/browse/home/s ... co=MTE3MDI

Apple is claiming that it's the lowest power desktop in the world and uses less than 13w at idle.

That sounds way too low, no? Has anyone been able to reach those sort of numbers with a custom build? I'd love to see their claims independently verified, because it seems too good to be true!


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 2:52 am 
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What's the SPCR record at the moment for low power consumption with a C2D CPU? Does anything approach the new Mini?

It's a disappointing upgrade given it hasn't been touched for almost 2 years. Imagine the applications these could be used for with a quad core :)

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 7:23 am 
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My old laptop uses 15W idle and this includes the LCD. Although it's older parts, Pentium M Banias 1.6GHz with an Intel 855GM chipset. I'm also not undervolting or anything. I never tested this thing when I had my Dothan 1.6GHz and running at 0.7V at idle which is currently in use in my main desktop PC. My Desktop PC with the onboard i915GM chipset, laptop drive and a CD/DVD drive pulls about 22W with a Seasonic SS-300SFD PSU. Good, but I would assume a big part of this is the motherboard not being as efficient as laptop ones.

Obviously the C2D and nVidia chipset are much more powerful than my parts. I didn't see any mention of the C2D being a low voltage model or anything. But I would still expect that to have low idle draw. This does seem to speak well of the nVidia chipset though. The chipset/motherboard seems to be the largest contributor to power draw at lower levels. The fact that this seems to draw very little at idle is a good sign.


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 Post subject: Re: New Mac mini - <13w at idle?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 7:38 am 
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drees wrote:
http://store.apple.com/us/browse/home/shop_mac/family/mac_mini?mco=MTE3MDI

Apple is claiming that it's the lowest power desktop in the world and uses less than 13w at idle.

That sounds way too low, no? Has anyone been able to reach those sort of numbers with a custom build? I'd love to see their claims independently verified, because it seems too good to be true!

With the LCD off, Wifi & HD removed, and underclocked my ASUS Eee PC 1000HA draws 5W at idle, and that can be used as a desktop.

My Sempron LE-1250 + 740G + 2GB DDR2 800 at 800MHz @ 0.784V idles about 17W DC (in a motherboard designed for 95W CPUs--so, probably a lot of VRM loss).

The 9400M in the Ion is suppossedly 3W idle, and a 45nm Core 2 Duo can idle at 3W. So, 13W idle for the Mac Mini sounds very reasonable.

bgiddins wrote:
What's the SPCR record at the moment for low power consumption with a C2D CPU? Does anything approach the new Mini?

One would need a ULV Intel chipset to get a normal LGA775 system down this low. Most Intel desktop chipsets are >10W idle all by themselves. The Netburst era Intel FSB seems to be very power inefficient. My G31 system is running a 400MHz FSB clock, while my Eee PC is running the same FSB at a mere 41MHz clock at that low idle.

My G31 + E7200 999MHz @ 0.752V 39W idle AC (~20W DC)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 2:54 pm 
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bgiddins wrote:
What's the SPCR record at the moment for low power consumption with a C2D CPU? Does anything approach the new Mini?

It's a disappointing upgrade given it hasn't been touched for almost 2 years. Imagine the applications these could be used for with a quad core :)

It's a Mobile C2D and uses a 2.5" drive so you really have to compare it notebooks as well as MoDT. Power consumption seems pretty typical for a similarly configured notebook (with the screen off, of course) so really what Apple has achieved is finally realizing the promise of MoDT -- past solutions have tended to be double the idle draw of a similarly equiped notebook. Hopefully the basis for this motherboard design will find its way into the retail market.

I don't think it's disappointing at all when you consider how big an upgrade the graphics is. That P8400 is plenty powerful for 99% of the users who'd consider a Mini. There are mobile C2Q, but they would price the Mini out of its intended market -- an iMac for people who don't want an integrated monitor. Apple has very strict market segmentation. If you want flexibility, they will never be the vendor for you.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 11:14 pm 
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bgiddins wrote:
Imagine the applications these could be used for with a quad core :)

Hardly any desktop software makes use full of multiple cores, so it would be a waste. Most programs are still designed to run on a single core, so a quad core processor is useless for the vast majority of people. For less than the cost of any given quad core processor, you can get a faster dual core, which will perform better in most applications and games.

Unless you're making heavy use of professional 3D modelling or video editing software programmed to utilize multiple cores, a dual core processor is probably a better choice. If you do have the need for four cores, then you'll probably be looking for something a little more powerful than a Mac Mini. : )


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2009 1:37 am 
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Cryoburner wrote:
Hardly any desktop software makes use full of multiple cores, so it would be a waste.

I was thinking VMware Fusion for starters. Nothing wrong with a bit of virtualisation on the desktop.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2009 2:41 am 
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bgiddins wrote:
Cryoburner wrote:
Hardly any desktop software makes use full of multiple cores, so it would be a waste.

I was thinking VMware Fusion for starters. Nothing wrong with a bit of virtualisation on the desktop.

True, but that runs fine on a dual core as well. :) If you really need a quad core you'll need to look at something else.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2009 11:05 am 
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Apparently the CPU is soldered in place too, so you can't replace it.

You can upgrade the hard drive and ram though, as described in this disassembly guide.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2009 11:43 am 
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Cryoburner wrote:
Apparently the CPU is soldered in place too, so you can't replace it.

You can upgrade the hard drive and ram though, as described in this disassembly guide.


Are you sure the CPU is soldered to the board? Having taken my older C2D Mini apart, this looks very similar to all the earlier Intel models, and the CPU can be upgraded in the earlier ones.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2009 4:10 pm 
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hmsrolst wrote:
Cryoburner wrote:
Apparently the CPU is soldered in place too, so you can't replace it.

You can upgrade the hard drive and ram though, as described in this disassembly guide.


Are you sure the CPU is soldered to the board? Having taken my older C2D Mini apart, this looks very similar to all the earlier Intel models, and the CPU can be upgraded in the earlier ones.


Answering my own question: I've seen the pictures and it is soldered to the board. Too bad!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 6:37 am 
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BillyBuerger wrote:
My old laptop uses 15W idle and this includes the LCD. Although it's older parts, Pentium M Banias 1.6GHz with an Intel 855GM chipset. I'm also not undervolting or anything. I never tested this thing when I had my Dothan 1.6GHz and running at 0.7V at idle which is currently in use in my main desktop PC. My Desktop PC with the onboard i915GM chipset, laptop drive and a CD/DVD drive pulls about 22W with a Seasonic SS-300SFD PSU. Good, but I would assume a big part of this is the motherboard not being as efficient as laptop ones.

Obviously the C2D and nVidia chipset are much more powerful than my parts. I didn't see any mention of the C2D being a low voltage model or anything. But I would still expect that to have low idle draw. This does seem to speak well of the nVidia chipset though. The chipset/motherboard seems to be the largest contributor to power draw at lower levels. The fact that this seems to draw very little at idle is a good sign.



yeah your i agree for what you said, anyway thanks for the tips ...


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Apr 11, 2009 9:17 pm 
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Happy with my new Asus Eee Pc 1000HE. Has great power consumption all around. Serves me great for downloading things, even watching SD movies.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Apr 25, 2009 3:47 pm 
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Location: California, USA
The Mac Mini white paper by Apple claims average 87% efficiency, about the same as the PicoPSU with the 120W power brick.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Apr 26, 2009 9:16 pm 
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fyleow wrote:
The Mac Mini white paper by Apple claims average 87% efficiency, about the same as the PicoPSU with the 120W power brick.

Realistically, this is about the best you can expect without extreme measures. 90% efficiency for AC-DC (brick) combined with 95% efficiency for DC-DC (internal PSU) yields 86% overall efficiency. I expect anything, using decent quality components, based on AC-DC brick + DC-DC PSU to have an overall peak efficiency in the range of 85-90%.


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