PC vendors have been experimenting with making extremely small computers in the form factor of a large thumb drive. A new model would need Thunderbolt 3 and USB-C ports, plus upgraded processors, graphics, and memory. It also needs solid-state memory across the board. I installed a homebrewed Fusion Drive in a mini last year, and it makes quite a difference in performance. Dan has been writing about all things Apple since , when he first started contributing to the MacUser blog. What the Mac needs in Retrieved September 19, February 23, The Spy Report.
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Pairing with an Apple TV
The newer model, introduced July 20, has the same physical dimensions but is slightly lighter, at 2. The current Mac mini is designed to be opened using a round cover on the bottom of the computer.
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Prior versions of the Mac mini were much more difficult to open. Some Mac mini owners used a putty knife or a pizza cutter to pry open the cases of older models to gain access to the interior for installation of cheaper third party memory upgrades. It's also possible to use wires to pull the white plastic bottom case out of the metal top case. They switched to a non-socketed CPU with the model that did not allow an easy upgrade.
With the June revision, the case can be readily opened to add RAM except for the Late models. The Mac mini can be used for home cinema theater applications. The small footprint, multi-format video output, digital audio output, remote control IR receiver and the relatively powerful Intel CPUs make it easy to use the Mac mini as part of a home entertainment system. Sound is provided by a combination jack that uses both mini- headphone analog and optical fiber cables digital.
As of the July revision of the Mac mini, the computer sports an Intel HD graphics processor with an optional Radeon graphics processing unit available and Thunderbolt which makes decoding high-resolution video much quicker and efficient. The current Intel models of Mac mini can display video via the HDMI port at a maximum resolution of x and up to x via the Mini DisplayPort with a compatible monitor. The chips in these models of Mac mini ran at either 1. This restricts both the maximum amount of available memory, which can greatly reduce performance by forcing the system to page to the hard disk, and, since the system is unable to take advantage of dual channels, maximum bandwidth.
The Mac mini G4 uses a single 2. Because of its sealed enclosure, it is not possible to upgrade the hard drive without opening the enclosure and possibly voiding the warranty of the system. The original Mac mini includes two USB 2. The modem was later omitted from the Mac mini, but an external modem remained an option.
In praise of the versatile Mac mini
External displays are supported via a DVI port. In the last revision of the Mac mini G4, the internal mezzanine board was upgraded to accommodate the AirPort Wi-Fi and Bluetooth technology onto one chip. In prior models, the Mac mini included an AirPort Extreme card taped to the mezzanine board and a separate Bluetooth module. For example, on a 1. The product packaging also did not reflect the upgrade. Apple did not revise the official specifications on their web site. As of Mac OS X The specifications below are from Apple's "tech specs" page,  except where noted.
The current non-server Mac mini is available in two versions, one with a mobile dual-core bit Intel Core i5 processor that runs at 2. The and Mac mini models that come standard with a bit Intel Core Solo processor can be changed to an Intel bit Core 2 Duo processor through a simple upgrade. The following processors are compatible: The more recent and later Mac mini models have the processors soldered onto the logic board and thus are not upgradable. Geekbench scores have shown that the 2.
While the Mac mini G4 contained a separate graphics processor, all revisions of the Intel-based Mac mini contain integrated GPUs, except in the version where the 2. Unlike the Mac mini G4, the Intel-based Mac mini uses a dual-channel architecture for memory. While all versions of the Mac mini up to and including the revision supports user upgradeable memory after purchase, the current model does not,  because the memory is soldered to the logic board.
Since the integrated graphics processor does not have its own dedicated memory, the system shares some of the main system memory with it. All models continue to use 2. A Combo drive was initially offered as standard, with the SuperDrive being an option, but through the models, all models that have an optical drive contain the SuperDrive as standard. Networking is supported with a built-in Gigabit Ethernet port and an integrated Bluetooth was also made standard. External displays are supported through a DVI port.
A fifth USB 2.
The AirPort card was upgraded to Bluetooth was also upgraded from 2. As of this revision, the Apple Remote is no longer included with the Mac mini. The Mac mini model gave access to 3 different USB busses on the back. Upgradable up to an Intel Core 2 Duo 2. Starting from the mid revision, there is a removable panel on the bottom, enabling the user to upgrade the RAM.
The new Mac mini has an all-aluminium enclosure, called unibody. The unibody manufacturing process was originally developed for the MacBook Air  and later also used in the MacBook and MacBook Pro , and the iMac before being introduced into the Mac mini range. The built-in power supply negates the need for an external power supply "brick" used on earlier models. There have been other changes in the revision. They include the elimination of the Kensington Security Slot ,  as well as the optical drive.
While the fifth USB 2. Mac mini models released in late used dual-core processors, which perform worse in multi-threaded workloads compared to the quad-core processors from the model. Meanwhile, single-threaded workload performance increased. PCIe-based flash storage is standard with no option of a hard disk drive.
The chassis is mostly a carryover from the previous generation, measuring the same dimensions, though is only available in a darker "space gray" finish. Memory can again be replaced, unlike the models that soldered it to the logic board.
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Apple has offered a Server configuration of the Mac mini. Later on, Apple released the OS X Server packaged app as a single purchase from the Mac App Store , containing all the separate components apps, so that any model of Mac computer could download and use them. The Mid Server model was initially the only Mac mini to entirely remove the optical drive, replacing it with a second hard drive in its place. However, from the Mid models onwards, all models of Mac mini had the optical drive removed.
The Mac mini Server was discontinued with the Late model. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Desktop computer by Apple. Apple Inc. The named reference spec was invoked but never defined see the help page. Archived from the original on September 24, Retrieved November 3, The Economist.
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