I've just spent the last week using Manjaro linux with Cinnamon. For a beta distro it's in excellent shape and it looks like it will give many other distros a run for their money further down the track.
Speed-wise it just flies, and I installed it to a pair of SSDs in RAID0 and even firefox starts quickly. However the installation process really lets it down hard. While it works well for a standard installation, the same can't be said for a more complex installation, such as to a RAID set. I had to do it all by hand, which was a bit scary for me as I've only been using linux for 3 months. It is much more complex to install to RAID 0 than is Mint.
There were issues with pacman, the Arch package installer. I had to turn off security keys to get Manjaro installed. I also had absolutely no end of trouble trying to get AMD's proprietary driver to remember settings.
Because the distro is based on Arch Linux it puts a lot of stuff into tmpfs, which, in and of itself, is a good thing, especially for those using SSDs, however it also puts auto-mounted devices in there as well, so things that go looking for mounted devices, Unetbootin being one of them, don't want to work properly.
On the plus side I learned a lot. For starters I'm now far more comfortable with rescuing my system from the commandline if it goes belly up. Arch has dropped support for AMD catalyst drivers because AMD is slow to respond to Xorg changes and the AMD devs apparently do shoddy work. This means that if you want to run an AMD card on the fglrx driver you must downgrade Xorg to 1.13. This won't be an issue for those using Ubuntu-based Mint because AMD are concentrating on Ubuntu, which uses Xorg 1.13. Also, Steam have announced they'll be using Ubuntu as their reference distro, so that's another reason AMD aren't doing anything with the more recent Xorg versions. So, that prompted me to trash my recently purchased AMD HD7970 and replace it with Gigabyte's nVidia GTX 680 Super Overclocked card, which arrives by courier today.
This morning I booted Manjaro and kernel 3.8 had died. Fortunately I didn't remove kernel 3.7 so I was able to get my early morning linux fix. However that incident was enough to convince me it was time to leave the bleeding edge and return to Mint, which is by far and away more stable.
Manjaro is a lovely distro, especially with infinality font rendering installed. I did this by hand too. I think Manjaro will be a distro to be reckoned with further down the track, but despite all the positives it's not for me right now. I need my system to keep running and not suffer unexplained cases of heartburn at boot time.
All that said, if there is the one thing that has made my mind up to return to Mint it's the lively forum community. Manjaro's community has a lot of rough edges. It lacks a lot in the language department; there aren't that many native English speakers on the forum and at my age I don't have patience for trying to understand technical instructions written in badly broken English. Of course, that's got everything to do with me and nothing to do with Manjaro or its community. Even if I set aside the language problems I experienced on the Manjaro forums, Mint's community is still far and away a much better place to be. So, kudos to the whole Mint community.
Thanks for reading. I hope you enjoyeed the story.
I'll reinstall Mint later today.
Mint Testing Team & Mint Donor #3606
KDE 4.11.3, custom preemptive kernel 3.12.2,
Intel i7 4770K @ 4.7GHz, 16GB 2666MHz XMP,
4 Samsung 840 PRO 512GB SSDs in RAID0,
6TB HW RAID10, dual 24" Acer X243H,
Gigabyte nVidia GTX 680 Super Overclock