New Intel Mac Minis Use Shared Memory for Video

Footnote 4 on the new Mac Mini features page:

Memory available to Mac OS X may vary depending on graphics needs. Minimum graphics memory usage is 80MB, resulting in 432MB of system memory available.

These machines are using very different — and decidedly inferior — graphic cards than the MacBook Pros and iMacs. Instead of a separate pool of video RAM, the video card uses regular RAM. 512 MB was barely tolerable on the old Minis — it’s probably not even close to enough memory on the new ones. I figure if the minimum graphics memory usage is 80 MB, then it’ll probably use at least 128 MB in real-world use, leaving only 384 MB for the system and applications.

Tuesday, 28 February 2006