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#278106 - 2018-07-23 12:52 Mac Mini ROCKs
Registered: 2003-10-04
Posts: 2,160
spinaltap Offline
Senior Shouting Officer
spinaltap Offline
Senior Shouting Officer

Registered: 2003-10-04
Posts: 2,160
Loc: Bournville, UK
I recently priced up an Intel NUC for running Roon ROCK.

Roon suggests that ROCK consists of a small capacity pci-e SSD on which their software is loaded, plus a HDD for storing your music.

However, I discovered the Mac alternative. It’s stated that you can’t open-up a 2014 Mac Mini in tinkering with upgrades. It’s true that the RAM is soldered to the motherboard, but that’s it.

Apple’s best kept secret is an unoccupied pci-e slot on even the base 1.4Ghz model.

£479 buys a 1.4Ghz i5 with 500GB HDD with 4GB RAM,
£679 buys a 2.6Ghz i5 with 1TB HDD with 8GB RAM.

You can buy an i7 model, but it’s an expensive option.

So-called ‘refurbished’ models are regularly available and cheaper on the AppleStore.

Separately, on Amazon, a Samsung 970 EVO 250GB pci-e SSD is £86.
On eBay, an appropriate pci-e flex cable is just £20. This simply adheres into place.

A nylon pry tool, plus a T5 and TR6 Torx screwdriver is all that’s needed to complete the upgrade.

Once completed, you have a Mac ROCK pci-e SSD and up to 1TB of stored music. Or, buy a larger capacity blade SSD and run vanilla Roon on it.


My Mac can go all the way to XI - Mac user since 1988.
Meridian owner since 1993.
M6, 218, 504, 506.2, AC12, SBT, ReadyNAS, Mac Mini Server, Amarra4, Loewe Bild7.55.
In storage: Meridian 551, 555, A500, Director. VDH Teatrack, Mission Elegante e82, e81, e8c, B&W PV-1.
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#278107 - 2018-07-23 13:16 Re: Mac Mini ROCKs [Re: spinaltap]
Registered: 2010-12-09
Posts: 3,578
Ratbert Offline
Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
Ratbert Offline
Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal

Registered: 2010-12-09
Posts: 3,578
Loc: Europe
Interesting option but a NUC 7i7, Samsung 250gb M.2 SSD (pcie 3.0), 2x4gb memory DIMMS and 1TB HDD (no advantage performance wise between SSD and HDD for music other than mechanical noise which is minimal) currently on Amazon UK for a total of £629.03, the i5 NUC is £63.00 cheaper, the i3 NUC is £187.00 cheaper.

Well worth bearing in mind the NUC (7i7, 7i5, 7i3) can run the Roon Rock operating system which is free, customised for just the task it needs to perform and nothing else and is fully supported by Roon.

NOTE: Rock installed on any other device whilst it may work is unsupported by the Roon team.

Russ

Links to discussed products below:
NUC
M.2 SSD
Memory
HDD


Never pass up a good chance to shut up!
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#278108 - 2018-07-23 14:56 Re: Mac Mini ROCKs [Re: Ratbert]
Registered: 2003-10-04
Posts: 2,160
spinaltap Offline
Senior Shouting Officer
spinaltap Offline
Senior Shouting Officer

Registered: 2003-10-04
Posts: 2,160
Loc: Bournville, UK
Start-up speed, seek, read/write is faster on SSD, and spectacular on PCI-E, compared the mechanical hard drives.

Plus, partition the SSD blade between ROCK and MacOS.


My Mac can go all the way to XI - Mac user since 1988.
Meridian owner since 1993.
M6, 218, 504, 506.2, AC12, SBT, ReadyNAS, Mac Mini Server, Amarra4, Loewe Bild7.55.
In storage: Meridian 551, 555, A500, Director. VDH Teatrack, Mission Elegante e82, e81, e8c, B&W PV-1.
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#278115 - 2018-07-23 19:59 Re: Mac Mini ROCKs [Re: spinaltap]
Registered: 2010-12-09
Posts: 3,578
Ratbert Offline
Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
Ratbert Offline
Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal

Registered: 2010-12-09
Posts: 3,578
Loc: Europe
ROCK on a NUC uses the M.2 SSD for booting not the HDD and as as you say is very quick, the HDD is for music only where speed is not paramount.

Not sure partitioning the SSD is an option with ROCK and why do it, the purpose of ROCK on a NUC is to have an appliance quick to boot and easy to maintain, not a multipurpose PC?


Never pass up a good chance to shut up!
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