M1 Mac Mini My Biggest Issues As A Video Editor 1 Month on.
A 16gb, M1 Mac mini is heralded as the miracle machine with Apple’s new silicon revolutionising how we think about computer specs. But, beyond all the hype and excited first impressions on YouTube, is it actually all it’s cracked up to be?
Anyone that follows us here or across social media will know that we going through something of a studio rebuild at the moment. As part of that I wanted to invest into some new editing machines for both our YouTube videos but also the filmmaking work we do.
The timing of the release of the new M1 Mac mini’s couldn’t be better, so I jumped on board, using Pete as my high-tech guinea pig and upgraded his machine with the 16gb M1 Mac Mini. So now after a month of use we have a pretty good idea of what this machine is like to use, as a video editor.
Let’s start with the positives. Big Sur and the general OS performance is great, actually I’d say amazing. All your native OSX apps are snappy and as a computer to live with it’s excellent.
That Insane Value For money that it represents really holds up in use. We spec’d this machine with the 16gb M1, with the 1tb of storage, which came in at just £1299. It’s hard to give that a perspective or comparison, because the new silicon, but it at least feels around half the cost of what we would’ve spent in the Intel days.
Now the important part, the real life, daily use negatives. And make no bones about it there is some key ones for video editors.
Premiere Pro is horrible, It’s not optimised for Apple silicon, which for a company the size of adobe feels lazy. So we’re stuck with running the 14.8 version in the rosetta emulation. I know I’m being pretty harsh because it works, but not at the performance levels required to smoothly edit h.265 4k footage. I’ve seen a lot of videos saying how good it is, even in premiere pro, so perhaps they’re all doing something different to me, but we currently are struggling with it in our workflow.
Now this is likely to be fixed as soon as Adobe release the 14.9 update to Premiere Pro, which is M1 optimised and runs without emulation. When that does happen I’ll be sure to report back here, so watch this space. And after seeing the impressive benchmarks and how well Final Cut works I’m really excited for this optimised version to be available for release.
So my final thoughts and advice, if you’re looking at buying this machine for any kind of content creation or heavier video editing.
Firstly Buy The Biggest internal storage you can afford. The internal storage is SO fast it’s insane, it is 100% worth the money. It’s double the speed of the fastest Thunderbolt HDD such as the Samsung T7, so in the long run it will definitely be the smarter investment.
Also get the 16gb version if you content create in any way. This machine isn’t user upgradable, so its always best to buy the best you possible afford from the start. You will be thankful for having that extra headroom for multi-tasking or intensive tasks like HEVC encoding.
Finally, and this is for Adobe users only, Don’t buy it yet, wait for the 14.9 update to come out otherwise you won’t get the bets out of this machine. It really is a machine for the next chapter of apple computers, I’m really excited by it’s potential but equally frustrated that we can’t see that yet.
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