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An issue I don't see getting discussed here is SATA 1.5 vs. SATA 3.0.
Is the mini still using the ICH7-M AHCI which is SATA 1.5 (according to a spec I have)?
Apparently some SATA 3.0 drives will auto-switch to 1.5 -- but it's more reliable for heavy data transfer to set it manually (with jumpers or software config app depending on the drive maker).