New Mac Mini

Configure and optimize you computer for Audio.
Sascha Franck
KVRAF
12471 posts since 14 Nov, 2000 from Hannover / Germany

Post Fri Nov 09, 2018 12:51 pm

chk071 wrote:
Fri Nov 09, 2018 12:37 pm
FWIW, I have 2 laptops here, both running on drivers solely from Windows Update, I didn't install a single driver on them. Working flawlessly. Driver support is really good in Windows 10.
I was already aware of that - but what was absolutely new to me was that you can take an existing install and boot another machine from it. I always thought that was just possible because of the limited amount of hardware options in Apple land.

If MS really managed to get that done more or less reliably, I'd consider it a massive leap forward - because, seriously, failing computer hardware (and we all know it happens) was plain horror when you had to get back up and running quickly. Even in case you had backups for everything, re-installing the system and all your software (add authorisations to the scenario) has always been the proverbial pain in the butt and easily takes anything between a full day amd up to a week until you really have everything running smoothly again. Being able to start from at least some basically configured system with the minimum of software you need is pretty much a godsend already (and well, waiting for a few drivers to install really isn't that much of a hassle).
This very thing is really one of the major things that made me appreciate OSX. I went through one complete computer fail, the aforementioned fan issue and a system migration - and it simply was a matter of a few minutes every time. If Windows could get me there as well, even if it'd be just more or less there, that'd be just another reason to think about switching back (will happen anyway once I need a new laptop, which will rather be a nice convertible instead of that horribly overpriced Apple stuff). Now, if I only wasn't such a Logic afficionado...
There are 3 kinds of people:
Those who can do maths and those who can't.

chk071
KVRAF
17271 posts since 11 Apr, 2010 from Germany

Re: New Mac Mini

Post Fri Nov 09, 2018 1:04 pm

Ah... then I misunderstood that. Wasn't aware of that either, BTW. Always thought there could be collisions between drivers etc.

Sascha Franck
KVRAF
12471 posts since 14 Nov, 2000 from Hannover / Germany

Re: New Mac Mini

Post Fri Nov 09, 2018 1:13 pm

chk071 wrote:
Fri Nov 09, 2018 1:04 pm
Always thought there could be collisions between drivers etc.
Same here. And it's been like that for ages. I once tried to transfer an existing install over to a new machine back in the XP days. It even sort of worked - but I had to spend so much time cleaning up traces from old drivers, completely bloating up the registry and what not, so that was not worth it. I ended up re-installing everything from the scratch.
There are 3 kinds of people:
Those who can do maths and those who can't.

BrokenTrance
KVRist
257 posts since 25 Nov, 2010

Re: New Mac Mini

Post Sat Nov 10, 2018 4:48 pm

Kaine wrote:
Fri Nov 09, 2018 1:58 am
keyman_sam wrote:
Thu Nov 08, 2018 10:46 pm
Some wonderful points there on the advantages of MacOS. I didn't realize you could just clone your Mac drive and boot from it elsewhere/restore it. That's been a dream of mine on the PC world. You could create a boot disk of your PC and boot from it later. But to my knowledge you can't boot ANOTHER pc with that boot disk.
Am I missing something?

You can create an image on one machine and use that image to run another machine. I move OS boot drives between systems all day long for benchmarking with no issue since the dawn of W7, doesn't matter if it's Intel or AMD anymore and hasn't for a long time.

If you just need a boot/recovery disk, W10 has the function built in to create one that'll work on anything.
I hope you at least do Sysprep before you move disks. This is diffrent in Windows and say Linux from what i know. Mac i don't know.

BrokenTrance
KVRist
257 posts since 25 Nov, 2010

Re: New Mac Mini

Post Sat Nov 10, 2018 5:20 pm

Sascha Franck wrote:
Fri Nov 09, 2018 1:13 pm
chk071 wrote:
Fri Nov 09, 2018 1:04 pm
Always thought there could be collisions between drivers etc.
Same here. And it's been like that for ages. I once tried to transfer an existing install over to a new machine back in the XP days. It even sort of worked - but I had to spend so much time cleaning up traces from old drivers, completely bloating up the registry and what not, so that was not worth it. I ended up re-installing everything from the scratch.
You can do and best is SYSPREP but not recommended and little risky. New install best.

keyman_sam
KVRAF
3998 posts since 8 Mar, 2005

Re: New Mac Mini

Post Sun Nov 11, 2018 7:59 am

Are there any advantages to getting the Blackmagic multi dock over an external ssd enclosure for Mac mini?

Right now I have 2 SSDs so is there any advantage to getting the dock?

Sascha Franck
KVRAF
12471 posts since 14 Nov, 2000 from Hannover / Germany

Re: New Mac Mini

Post Sun Nov 11, 2018 5:23 pm

keyman_sam wrote:
Sun Nov 11, 2018 7:59 am
Are there any advantages to getting the Blackmagic multi dock over an external ssd enclosure for Mac mini?

Right now I have 2 SSDs so is there any advantage to getting the dock?
I don't think so, unless you plan to set up a raid or need to add more SSDs for whatever other reasons, hence running out of connections.
There are 3 kinds of people:
Those who can do maths and those who can't.

User avatar
Jace-BeOS
KVRAF
4707 posts since 7 Jan, 2005 from Corporate States of America

Re: New Mac Mini

Post Sun Nov 11, 2018 7:26 pm

Sascha Franck wrote:
Fri Nov 09, 2018 12:51 pm
chk071 wrote:
Fri Nov 09, 2018 12:37 pm
FWIW, I have 2 laptops here, both running on drivers solely from Windows Update, I didn't install a single driver on them. Working flawlessly. Driver support is really good in Windows 10.
I was already aware of that - but what was absolutely new to me was that you can take an existing install and boot another machine from it. I always thought that was just possible because of the limited amount of hardware options in Apple land.

If MS really managed to get that done more or less reliably, I'd consider it a massive leap forward - because, seriously, failing computer hardware (and we all know it happens) was plain horror when you had to get back up and running quickly. Even in case you had backups for everything, re-installing the system and all your software (add authorisations to the scenario) has always been the proverbial pain in the butt and easily takes anything between a full day amd up to a week until you really have everything running smoothly again. Being able to start from at least some basically configured system with the minimum of software you need is pretty much a godsend already (and well, waiting for a few drivers to install really isn't that much of a hassle).
This very thing is really one of the major things that made me appreciate OSX. I went through one complete computer fail, the aforementioned fan issue and a system migration - and it simply was a matter of a few minutes every time. If Windows could get me there as well, even if it'd be just more or less there, that'd be just another reason to think about switching back (will happen anyway once I need a new laptop, which will rather be a nice convertible instead of that horribly overpriced Apple stuff). Now, if I only wasn't such a Logic afficionado...
I have successfully moved Windows from one machine to another without having to completely reinstall it, several times, starting with XP. I don’t know, however, if that ever contributed to problems. As far as I can tell, the problems with those installs weren’t any worse than the problems I’ve had with clean installs (like just last night, my PC woke up to do a Windows update... which I was unaware has been failing for months). As far as I can tell, Windows spontaneously breaks it’s own damned self.

But the point was that Windows has enough generic drivers installed on all installations to survive moving from hardware config to hardware config. It’s not instant and it still wastes a lot of time installing drivers, but it can do it.
- dysamoria.com
my music @ SoundCloud

Sascha Franck
KVRAF
12471 posts since 14 Nov, 2000 from Hannover / Germany

Re: New Mac Mini

Post Mon Nov 12, 2018 3:15 am

Jace-BeOS wrote:
Sun Nov 11, 2018 7:26 pm
But the point was that Windows has enough generic drivers installed on all installations to survive moving from hardware config to hardware config. It’s not instant and it still wastes a lot of time installing drivers, but it can do it.
Well, as said, my point wasn't drivers. I can keep everything needed on one USB stick. Thing is - and that was absolutely true until XP - that each configurations left traces behind, sometimes buried deeply, so even some manual registry cleanup didn't always remove all traces. Let alone the horror of doing manual registry searches. None of that has ever been an issue for me when cloning/moving OSX.
There are 3 kinds of people:
Those who can do maths and those who can't.

User avatar
Jace-BeOS
KVRAF
4707 posts since 7 Jan, 2005 from Corporate States of America

Re: New Mac Mini

Post Mon Nov 12, 2018 4:10 am

Sascha Franck wrote:
Mon Nov 12, 2018 3:15 am
Jace-BeOS wrote:
Sun Nov 11, 2018 7:26 pm
But the point was that Windows has enough generic drivers installed on all installations to survive moving from hardware config to hardware config. It’s not instant and it still wastes a lot of time installing drivers, but it can do it.
Well, as said, my point wasn't drivers. I can keep everything needed on one USB stick. Thing is - and that was absolutely true until XP - that each configurations left traces behind, sometimes buried deeply, so even some manual registry cleanup didn't always remove all traces. Let alone the horror of doing manual registry searches. None of that has ever been an issue for me when cloning/moving OSX.
Agreed. I hate the Windows registry. It’s one of the most insane operating system design ideas ever. It also has a ton of duplication in it. Uninstalling software never completely returns the registry to the state it was in prior to installation. I’ve seen it said that Microsoft is deprecating the registry for third-party usage (at least with regard to their newest “app” API).

I also hate the layout of Windows and its associated files. The whole system is a cluttered mess with content that isn’t remotely clear as to its function or purpose. I’ve seen a Windows install footprint grow many gigabytes larger over time just from use; it’s ludicrous. It’s always easier to start over from scratch than to try to clean out old stuff because there are too many places for things to collect.

I have a feeling that no one at Microsoft knows the entire system and why it’s built the way it is or why it does what it does.
- dysamoria.com
my music @ SoundCloud

dellboy
KVRian
704 posts since 28 Mar, 2007

Re: New Mac Mini

Post Mon Nov 12, 2018 5:50 am

Jace-BeOS wrote:
Mon Nov 12, 2018 4:10 am


Agreed. I hate the Windows registry. It’s one of the most insane operating system design ideas ever. It also has a ton of duplication in it. Uninstalling software never completely returns the registry to the state it was in prior to installation. I’ve seen it said that Microsoft is deprecating the registry for third-party usage (at least with regard to their newest “app” API).

I also hate the layout of Windows and its associated files. The whole system is a cluttered mess with content that isn’t remotely clear as to its function or purpose. I’ve seen a Windows install footprint grow many gigabytes larger over time just from use; it’s ludicrous. It’s always easier to start over from scratch than to try to clean out old stuff because there are too many places for things to collect.

I have a feeling that no one at Microsoft knows the entire system and why it’s built the way it is or why it does what it does.
Even though I have a windows machine, I would have to agree that you are right about it, it is a mess. I have used Linux in the past,and it is great that when you delete something it does not leave behind a mess like windows does. But Linux sucks for audio, and I always end up breaking it. That leaves us with the best operating system,OS X, but its just too expensive. So windows it is.

Life is a compromise.

User avatar
Jace-BeOS
KVRAF
4707 posts since 7 Jan, 2005 from Corporate States of America

Re: New Mac Mini

Post Mon Nov 12, 2018 11:53 pm

There are some things I try very hard not to compromise on and music computer frustration is one of them. I’ll spend more on a Mac just to get the OS. It’s about all I splurge on, and it’s very very infrequently.
- dysamoria.com
my music @ SoundCloud

Liero
KVRian
965 posts since 6 Mar, 2004

Re: New Mac Mini

Post Tue Nov 13, 2018 12:53 am

Public service announcement ---

If you A) Need to get work done in Windows and B) Think Windows 10 is buggy/bad/broken:

Switch to Windows 10 LTSB (Long-term Service Branch) NOW.

I've used every windows version from 3.11 to now and it's the single best Windows there has been. LTSB is a version that Microsoft would like only to be used in industrial applications and does NOT want normal users to know about since it wants them to be free beta-testers for their crappy first releases. LTSB is the cut diamond end product and _it_ _just_ _works_, like, for real.

Also doesn't have Craptana, Microsoft Crapstore, Internet Crapper built in, or any other crapware.

Kaine
KVRAF
1815 posts since 4 Nov, 2004 from Manchester

Re: New Mac Mini

Post Tue Nov 13, 2018 1:45 am

Sascha Franck wrote:
Fri Nov 09, 2018 3:23 am
Wow, that's news to me and quite astonishing. I should possibly try with my wifes Win10 machine and have a look whether I could even boot through Bootcamp.
Are there any tips to clone a drive and make it bootable via USB?
There are loads of cloning programs out there that should be suitable, I use Clonezilla, Acronis and Paragon regularlly.

To be clear I was talking about moving drives between systems, although cloning should be fine too. You didn't mention cloning from SSD to USB before, you said from drive to drive and USB can be a little more tricky in that regard. With that said you can treat the USB as a normal drive, although it's going to be slow.

Run the software, clone the drive and set the USB port to the first option in the boot list in the BIOS. Easus has a proper walkthrough here: https://www.easeus.com/backup-recovery/ ... drive.html

Chargable solutions "Casper disk backup" will run like an Apple timemachine backup, running a live backup that you can switch out and boot another machine from with ease.

Sascha Franck
KVRAF
12471 posts since 14 Nov, 2000 from Hannover / Germany

Re: New Mac Mini

Post Tue Nov 13, 2018 2:22 am

dellboy wrote:
Mon Nov 12, 2018 5:50 am
That leaves us with the best operating system,OS X, but its just too expensive.
Ok, my usual disclaimer: I'm the very last person to defend Apple.

But then: As so often, IMO it's a good idea to put things into perspective.
Admittedly, Apples hardware pricing scheme went all the way through the roof during the last, say, decade. With the even of them switching from PPC to Intel, all of a sudden Macs became at least a sort of attractive choice, but not too long after that, they kinda quickly moved back to their elitary approach.
However, things such as the new Mac Mini (which this very thread is about) might change that a bit. Not too sure about the i3 models, but the i5 6-core ones should give you quite a decent performance. Still not exactly great bang for the buck (you should be able to get around 1.5 to 2 x the raw performance numbers from an equally priced Windows machine) but at least there's now things such as user upgradeable RAM and finally a decent amount of connection options.

Then, and for me that's the most important point, we should perhaps have a look at the "overall cost of a productive system". Which most defenitely isn't just the price you pay for a computer. There's also:
- Cost of software.
- Setup time.
- Maintainance time.
- Possible downtime as a result of the latter two.

All of these might be irrelevant if you have your software needs covered already and are experienced in setting up a reliably working OS including backup scenarios and what not. In addition, I think it's safe to assume that most of us have a fair amount of free time that we're not getting paid for - hence we can as well use it for any activity we like, which obviously might include configuring a computer. So, in the end the good old "time is money" thing might not be exactly applicable.

Still, if you're struggling with either of these points, OSX might become attractive. Admittedly, for me it's been my sequencer of choice not being developed for Windows anymore, but with some 10 years into OSX by now, still dealing with Windows here and there (wifes machine, bootcamp, parallels, other VMs and what not), the positive things really sum up to quite a noticeable amount.
Yes, I always managed to keep the various Windows machines I was dealing with more or less troublefree, but I had to take care of virii, malware, system related slowdowns and what not (of course most of these aren't an issue when running a dedicated boot for music, but I'm absolutely no fan of that). None of these have ever been an issue with OSX. I'm running Onyx (freeware cleaning tool for OSX, basically just removing some left-overs to keep your system size small) once half a year or so (sometimes I even just forget about it) and that was it.
As described before, things that would've caused major downtime under Windows (broken fan leading to some months wait time, switching computers, updating OS'es, etc.) never were an issue. Not even once. And well, even if I couldn't earn money during the times I am dealing with computer configuration and maintainance, I could as well do things being more fun in that time. And yes, that *does* sum up over the years. Of course, the net worth of all these possible savings is a very personal thing, so there's no "this is better" verdict.

Ok, then, in sequencing land there's Logic (or even just Garageband). For me, this is sealing the deal. Not necessarily just because I was already familiar with it before switching...
Let's assume you don't have a sequencer yet or could do with pretty much any decent sequencer anyway. Let's also assume you need a nice roundup of plugins (both instruments and FX) and aren't exactly sorted yet. In Apple land, you purchase Logic and are pretty damn well sorted on all fronts. Yes, there's several plugins that are outdated by now and you will possibly need some 3rd party stuff to be completely happy (in my case that's Battery and some guitar amp modeling plugins), but OTOH there's some really excellent, super high quality stuff coming with it - such as Alchemy, most of their other synth offerings, Drum Kit Designer, Space Designer, Phat/Step FX (again adaptions from Camel Audio), Chromaverb, the compressor, etc. Just to name a few. And each of those are packed with additional content (samples and presets), some of it being up to the highest standards. Then there's Drummer - which isn't a plugin but, well, a virtual drummer. If you are like me and got tired of programming drums (I still like it and get along fairly well, but it's always a time consuming thing that I often simply don't want to deal with), Drummer is absolutely worth the price of admission alone.
Now, while it's very unlikely that anyone needs all the content coming with Logic (you're probably not even being able to explore half of it), even if you're only making use of around 10-20% of it, the package has to be considered a steal. I mean, it's €229 - if you went to calculate the value of such a package on the "normal" market, you would end up with something like 2-3k (conservatively calculated).

I'm not sure whether it's the same in video land (FCP seems to be a similarily attractive package but I don't now anything about these things), but what I'm saying is: If you can use the software Apple delivers either for free (after all, Garageband is anything but a toy these days, too - should be pretty good enough for plenty of folks and their sequencing needs) or for cheap, it'll surely make the overall price for a "production computer" look a lot more attractive.

Sorry for this lenghthy post. And I'm still not defending Apple (in fact, IMO their tactics of throwing professional software at you for next to nothing just so they can sell more computers isn't a great thing for the market). But it's very well possible to put things into perspective.
There are 3 kinds of people:
Those who can do maths and those who can't.

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