Apple Mac mini overview

Apple Mac mini overview

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The fresh Apple Mac mini (2018) makes lawful on Apple’s promises that it hadn’t forgotten about its diminutive-form relate Mac. Despite being fan favorites, the Mac mini hasn’t seen a tight update for 4 years now, but with the arrival of the fresh Mac mini, that’s all changed.

On paper it looks to be like take care of the long wait became as soon as worth it, with Apple claiming that the Mac mini (2018) is 5 cases sooner than the outdated Mac mini. This performance make bigger comes by methodology of some spectacular spec bumps alongside with a most RAM limit of 64GB and up to a six-core processor.

The Mac mini is additionally now being positioned as a utility for creators, with Apple claiming that it be 30 cases sooner at encoding HEVC video. It additionally has a bunch of ports on the reduction, and whereas there’s only one HDMI port,  there are 4 Thunderbolt three USB-C ports to know up the slack.

So, has the await an up in the past Mac mini been worth it? We snatch Apple’s mini PC for a ride to discover.

Apple Mac mini overview

Spec sheet

Here is the Apple Mac mini configuration despatched to TechRadar for overview:

CPU: three.6GHz Intel Core i3-8100 (quad-core, 4 threads, 6MB cache)
Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 630
RAM: 8GB (2,666 MHz DDR4)
Storage: 128GB PCIe SSD
Ports: 4x Thunderbolt three (USB-C), three.5mm headphone jack, 2x USB three, HDMI, Gigabit Ethernet
Connectivity: 802.11ac Wi-F, Bluetooth
Weight: 2.9 pounds (1.3kg)
Dimension: 7.7 x 7.7 x 1.4 inches (19.7 x 19.7 x three.6cm; W x D x H)

Worth and availability

This three hundred and sixty five days’s Apple Mac mini starts at $799 (£799, AU$1,249) and tops out at $1,099 (£1,099, AU$1,699) with the preset configurations. In case you alternate any of the parts, the worth will additionally alternate, which offers you some flexibility in the case of balancing energy with funds.

In case you’re shopping for a Mac to work on for inventive gains, then this isn’t very any doubt a more cheap utility compared to the likes of the iMac Pro, which charges $4,999 (£4,899, AU$7,299) for the wrong mannequin and is in a similar model geared against creatives.

More in the Mac mini as a diminutive PC? Then the nearest rival is arguably the Intel Hades Canyon NUC, which is a highly efficient, yet barebones, mini PC that runs both Windows or Linux, and charges $999 (about £710, AU$1,302). 

That makes the worth of the Apple Mac mini appear rather beneficiant, especially for oldsters that consider you’ll want to use storage, memory and an working machine separately for the NUC, which adds further expense (though you don’t want to pay for Linux, clearly).

Apple Mac mini overview


Fans of the compact, no nonsense, designs of outdated Mac minis shall be pleased to study that the fresh Mac mini truthful basic retains that intact, with the identical diminutive, sq.-ish metal have faith that measures 7.7 x 7.7 x 1.4 inches (19.7 x 19.7 x three.6cm) and weighs relatively of heavier than the final Mac mini at 2.9 pounds (1.3kg), compared to the older Mac mini’s weight of two.6 pounds (1.19kg).

Apple has made some refined tweaks to the have faith, on the other hand, as it now is accessible in House Gray to envision the iMac Pro (which is now the supreme coloration chance accessible), and Apple proudly states that the Mac mini contains 60% put up-particular person plastic in obvious parts (take care of the wrong), with the case manufactured from A hundred% recycled aluminum.

Apple has additionally managed the spectacular feat of cramming more highly efficient hardware into the identical compact dimensions thanks to a redesigned thermal architecture that contains an even bigger fan, expanded vents and an overhauled energy supply unit. 

The cross to a PCIe solid squawk power (SSD) for storage doesn’t simply make the Mac mini sooner, it methodology it runs cooler and quieter as wisely – critical for a diminutive form-relate PC.

Ports-fast-witted the Apple Mac mini (2018) comes with 4 Thunderbolt three USB-C ports, an HDMI port, two USB-A ports, audio jack and Gigabit Ethernet, alongside with a 10Gb Ethernet chance. On the reduction corner there’s a energy button and the more and more uncommon (for Apple products, a minimum of) three.5mm headphone jack as wisely.

Apple Mac mini overview

All these ports are kept at the reduction of the Mac mini for a sexy witness, which retains wires from sprawling in each squawk.

With only one HDMI port, you are going to want to both pork up to a Thunderbolt three computer screen or make attain with an adapter for oldsters that may maybe maybe maybe want to drag in bigger than one computer screen. Brooding in regards to the Mac Mini is built as a creator’s utility, a pair of shows are usually a must, so many folks will want to use further accessories.

The lawful news is that with Thunderbolt three you may as well bustle two 4K shows with out lengthen, and you may as well light beget two ports left over – maybe one for an external graphics card solution, which the Apple Mac mini (2018) helps. As per favorite, the keyboard and mouse are likely to be not included, so there’s another two accessory to relate in to the overall trace.

As is additionally favorite with Apple’s products, it’s not with out considerations upgradable, unlike mini PCs take care of the Intel NUC or Zotac ZBox fluctuate. This methodology that when the Mac mini starts exhibiting its age, you’re not going with a belief to with out considerations start it up and add in more highly efficient parts – apart from the memory. 

For anybody coming from a PC background where upgradability is critical, this is also frustrating, but for anybody outdated to Apple’s methodology of doing things, it acquired’t be too exquisite.

Apple Mac mini overview

There’s additionally a pair of things Apple has completed to mitigate the user’s lack of capacity to pork up with out considerations. First of all, you’re in a position to configure the Apple Mac mini (2018) rather extensively, permitting you to pork up rather a pair of parts sooner than you decide, guaranteeing you salvage a Mac mini that handiest suits your wants and funds.

It’s additionally worth noting that thanks to the trendy technology in the Apple Mac mini, you can light optimistically not if truth be told feel the want to pork up for a whereas yet. And, pondering the outlet between Mac mini releases this day, that shall be for the supreme.

Total, we’re pleased that Apple has maintained the diminutive dimension of the Mac mini whereas filling it with more highly efficient parts and heaps of ports, though creatives that want a pair of shows may maybe maybe want to consider carefully thanks to the single HDMI port, and scarcity of any DisplayPorts.

The House Gray coloration looks to be like vast, as it does on various Apple products, and the A hundred% recycled aluminium case is a welcome cross, which additionally retains the Mac mini feeling sturdy and sturdy.


Here’s how the Apple Mac mini (2018) performed in our suite of benchmark tests:

Cinebench CPU: 587 facets;
Graphics: forty.75 fps
Geekbench 4 Single-Core: 4,733;
Multi-Core: 14,447


The Mac mini runs with desktop-grade eighth technology Intel Core processors in quad- and hexa-core iterations, so we had high hopes for its computing energy. Constant with Apple, its fresh sq.-fashioned desktop delivers 5 cases the amount of performance over its predecessor.

With the Apple Mac mini being geared against creatives, which in overall depend on intensive utility gains and editing colossal files, the Apple Mac mini (2018), more so than outdated variations, wants with a belief to retain paddle.

The different of quad- and hexa-core eighth gen Intel Core processors with Turbo Enhance Speeds of up to 4.6GHz, and make stronger for up to 64GB of two,666 MHz memory (which is 4 cases maybe the most quantity the Mac mini 2014 may maybe maybe address) will completely use the Apple Mac mini feeling fast and responsive for many duties, and permits it to take care of a pair of duties with out lengthen thanks to the beneficiant helpings of RAM.

Apple Mac mini overview

Essentially the most in model Mac mini comes with the Apple T2 security chip, which comes with an SSD controller with on-the-cruise info encryption for “industry-main security”. The T2 chip additionally aspects HEVC video transcoding that is up to 30 cases sooner, which is spellbinding to be vast news for video editors who are in utilizing an Apple Mac mini for his or her inventive work.

The supreme squawk the Apple Mac mini (2018) is let down, specs fast-witted, is with the Intel UHD 630 built-in graphics. We would beget basic rather seen some form of discrete graphics, and anybody utilizing the Apple Mac mini for graphically-intensive inventive work, a lot like video editing and 3D modelling, may maybe maybe fetch the built-in graphics relatively limiting. 

On the other hand, these shopping for a enhance in performance on this entrance can repeatedly drag in an eGPU.

We acquired to sight how flexible the Mac mini (2018) is with a Black Magic eGPU plugged in. Bettering raw 4K video files and adding outcomes on the cruise in Closing Nick became as soon as impressively gentle for the form of tiny machine. Of direction, the external graphic card became as soon as doing different heavy lifting, on the other hand it became as soon as a lawful indication of how the fresh Mac mini may maybe maybe even be outdated in inventive work.

Apple Mac mini overview

Apple additionally confirmed us a charming setup where a single Mac mini (2018) became as soon as connected thru a network change to a network cluster of 5 Mac minis (piled on top of every various). By putting the 10Gb Ethernet port on the Mac mini (for oldsters that elect that chance when shopping the Mac mini) to lawful use, we seen how to offload intensive processes (a lot like rendering video) to these various Mac minis. The technique of doing this is impressively straightforward in Closing Nick, where it became as soon as a topic of opening up a menu and deciding on the connected Mac minis.

As soon as completed, the duties beget been performed by the different Mac minis, whereas the first one may maybe maybe light be outdated for working on with out any noticeable affect to performance. Presumably most impressively, the stack of 5 Mac minis remained truthful basic quiet, even when working on these intensive duties. For anybody who has outdated a pair of PCs with out lengthen on advanced projects and needed to position up with the sound of fans blasting off, this is also a welcome solution.

Of direction, there acquired’t be many folks that shall be utilizing a pile of Mac minis take care of that, on the other hand it’s a lawful demonstration of how versatile the fresh Mac mini is.

In our day-to-day use we beget been if truth be told impressed with the fresh Mac mini, which felt fast and responsive when working macOS 10.14 Mojave. Apps opened and closed  instantaneously, and heaps more not easy processes, a lot like video transcoding, became as soon as completed fast – and silently as wisely.

What we genuinely take care of approximately this fresh Mac mini is that Apple has produced a highly efficient and versatile mini PC that’s compact sufficient to be with out considerations carried round, or hidden out of look for in the reduction of a masks.

In our benchmark tests, the Mac mini doesn’t hit the highs of knowledgeable-grade Apple gadgets such because the MacBook Pro or iMac Pro, on the other hand it light performs thoroughly, especially in the multi-core tests thanks to that quad-core Intel processor. In case you drag for the Mac mini configuration with a hexa-core processor, ask even better outcomes.

It’s additionally worth remembering that the Mac mini is an efficient bit more cost effective than both of these various gadgets, even for oldsters that relate in the truth that you wish a computer screen, mouse and keyboard for the Mac mini.

In comparison with the outdated technology of Mac mini, there’s no competition: this three hundred and sixty five days’s Mac mini blows it out of the water, performance-fast-witted. In case you like your Mac mini and beget been waiting for an pork up, then you’re going to be very pleased with the fresh Mac mini.

Apple Mac mini overview


Many of us had been hoping that Apple would start an up in the past version of the everyday Mac mini for years now, so we beget been mad when the Cupertino company lastly introduced the fresh Mac mini earlier this three hundred and sixty five days. On the other hand, this isn’t simply an afterthought, or a brief and soiled update to retain the more vocal Mac mini enthusiasts soundless.

As a change, we’ve acquired a vastly overhauled Mac mini that in a variety of ways goes methodology past what we had been hoping for. Here is a in point of fact completed small machine that packs some fast-witted in model aspects and parts for a level of performance that locations many different diminutive form-relate PCs to disgrace.

Apple has acknowledged that the computing landscape has changed for the explanation that final Mac mini became as soon as launched. Again then, the Mac mini became as soon as designed with casual customers in mind, as wisely as an accessible utility to defend over folks from Windows.

With the upward thrust of laptops, and with the entry level MacBook now performing as that crossover utility, Apple has pitched the Mac mini against creatives and mavens. 

That may maybe maybe sound loopy, but you know what? It works. Here is a fast-witted small machine in its hold obliging, but paired with an eGPU (or perchance a pair of further Mac minis) and you’ve acquired a highly efficient machine for heavy-accountability duties. By being scalable on this methodology, as wisely as permitting you to make use of your hold computer screen and peripherals, you’ve acquired a in point of fact flexible utility.

It’s additionally very competitively priced compared to various diminutive form relate computer methods that supply identical ranges of performance. We’ve been ready a in point of fact very long time for an up in the past Mac mini, but in our look for it has no doubt been definitely worth the wait.

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