Released on July 21, 2011. Core i5 or Core i7 Processor. Thunderbolt. This unit is also used to run the Mac Mini Server configuration.

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Clean layout; should set an example for web design; and one question..

Beautiful layout! As per your observation that there is room in the mini for a second hard drive (assuming this "emptiness" is not actually for airflow and heat dissipation), and without SPECIFIC knowledge, can you foresee a way to add a second hard drive, even without the presence of a second SATA cable? (This looks like a job for...OWC!)

Oh--and is it SATA III or II?

And, if this were to be a "go," is a hardware Zero Striped RAID utterly out of the question? In countless benchmarks, Zero Striped RAIDs have shown a 90 - 100% increase in read/write bandwidth over single drives, and hard drives are the "weakest link" in feeding RAM to in turn feed the CPU (which is tapping its foot waiting).

I know there are software RAIDs, but parity calculations are performed by the CPU, and I don't know what kind of overall system performance hit this exacts. Do software RAIDs increase performance AT ALL? (Good RAID cards have high clock speed on-board I/O processors that takes care of all of this.)

The benchmarks that are coming out show that the "Server" mini is the fastest (like 33% faster than the best configured dual-core mini). For a little more, the server model gives you two 500GB hard drives and a quad-core i7 with 6MB L3 cache.

But it accomplishes this impressive speed while equipped with only the effete Intel integrated graphics (which suggests to me that Grand Central Dispatch and libdispatch have advanced far more than OpenCL and any other GPGPU considerations -- as the AMD/ATI discrete graphics doesn't seem to be helping much over the Server mini's Intel integrated graphics, no?).

Finally (I lied. I've asked more than one question, but at the outset, I had only one -- I SWEAR!), what's with IR?

Why not Bluetooth for remote control? In my living room, when someone is relaxing in the recliner near the TV, I have to stand up, raise the remote over my head every time I want to change channels, operate the DVD player, or DVR. I see no excuse to sort of "deprecate" IR on computers, TVs and all other consumer electronics in favor of Bluetooth.

Finally (I mean it this time) what's with "Near Field Communications"? Again, why not Bluetooth?

Thanks and sorry,

Michael Donahue

Answered! View the answer I have this problem too

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Dear "mayer,"

Thank you for your constructive and helpful comments.

But is it I who needs to chill out? Your flame suggests a quick temper, and anger management counseling might be worth investigating.

You wrote, "How about giving iFixit a chance to open the box.[?]"

This is in direct contradiction of your very next sentence, "Here's the teardown, evaluate it for yourself..."

Not to go out on a limb, but I surmise that iFixit opened the Mac mini's box in order to do their teardown (though I have no proof).

Finally, you must be operating on an incorrect assumption, because I suggested no timeframe for how soon my questions should be answered and was and am fully prepared to wait as long as necessary.

The questions were evoked directly from my close look at iFixit's Mac mini teardown, and I think they are pertinent, and hopefully any answers will benefit many more people than me.

Questions are just questions and are harmless; flames are not, and may serve to discourage or make people "gun shy" from asking certain questions for fear of being criticized.

iFixit's traffic might be affected. Don't let innocuous questions make you feel threatened or insecure.

Lastly, thank you for your earnest suggestion that I "Chill out[,]dude." I will give it due consideration and wish you the same.

Michael Donahue

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Well, there is definitely space inside the computer for a second hard drive, although, without a cable to plug it in, I'm not sure what good it would do you.

Apple so far does not support SATA III in any of their devices, although that does not mean it will not work. Our experience has been hit-and-miss with SATA III in Apple products.

As far as using the second hard drive in RAID, It looks like you can set up RAID however you like. Check out this thread. Granted, they are talking about last year's Mac Mini, but since the two models are so similar, I'm sure you could probably do the same thing, especially since the SATA connectors on this this years model are the same as last years model.

As far as why not use Bluetooth for everything, thats gonna have to be a question best left to Apple. My guess is that they were trying to keep costs down, and they already have remotes and everything set up using IR and NFC, so they will continue to support those.

Mac Mini Teardown

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It is SATA 3 (6 Gb/s) according to:

http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.p...

or:

http://blog.macsales.com/11248-2011-mac-...

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I'm sure the room is there because it's the same box as the Mini Server box, which has 2 drives. You'd have to get the cable from someone with an old server box or wait until someone gets clever enough to make a cable for a second drive, I'd imagine.

As for me, I'm buying the server b/c I need the quad core and having 2 drives is the icing on the cake... I'll just have to be patient to wait for the Thunderbolt external GPU to do some serious gaming after-hours.

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Mr. Hodson,

Please direct me to the iFixit link forbidding a certain number of tags.

Those tags were not entirely self-serving as they may assist other visitors in search queries that lead them to my questions and (hopefully) quality answers.

I don't know this for a fact, but the tags may increase iFixit's PR on search engines.

And all of the tags were words or subjects contained in my questions.

But so far, all responses to my question (save one; thank you Brett Hartt) have been flames. Do they serve iFixit's raison d'etre?

Finally, it's amusing that you would compare me to a car salesman on Craigslist when you state that your "most time-consuming and costly hobby, though, is definitely my car."

It's not mine, and I've never sold a car on Craigslist (or ever used Craigslist, for that matter).

My experience on iFixit is soured. I thought it would be different, and may give up on the site altogether. All I've gotten so far is flack and criticism for asking questions in a site (supposedly) devoted to eliciting and answering questions.

Michael Donahue

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Comments:

I assure you my comment was not flaming, it was merely that: a comment. I did not say you weren't allowed to add that many flags. Most people don't usually add that many (if any), and you definitely jumped on the opportunity to increase exposure for your question and help direct others, a fair thing to do. I hope you will consider my comment in a new light, and not think that everyone on iFixit is trying to flame you. I sincerely apologize if I offended you with my comment.

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David the flame comment was directed to me. I've deleted my answer as I'm just not qualified to answer questions on this machine yet. I haven't had a chance to look at it and right now I'm working on the new aspect of 10.7 which I do have.

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