Mac mini (2014) preview

Apple last updated the Mac mini in October 2012 so it's been more than a year since it was last refreshed. It seems likely that the company will soon update its low priced Mac very soon, and as soon as it does we'll update this preview with up to date information. In the meantime this is what we expect from the new Mac mini when it does launch. 

What is the Mac mini?

The Mac mini is Apple's lowest priced Mac with the price currently starting at £499, although you will have to factor in the price of a monitor, keyboard, and mouse.

The Mac mini is tiny, measuring less than 20cm by 20cm and 3.6cm high, and encased in aluminium.

The Mac mini and the Mac Pro are the only Macs that have easy to access memory – so you can add more RAM if you want. With other Macs adding more RAM after purchase is rarely simple, so we generally recommend doing so at point of purchase.

The Mac mini is a popular choice as a living room media centre, especially as it can be plugged into a HDTV screen via it's built in HDMI port.

What specs will the new 2104 Mac mini have?

Currently the Mac mini offers the choice of a 2.5GHz dual-core Intel Core i5, or a 2.6GHz quad-core Intel Core i7.

The new Mac mini is likely to feature a new Haswell processor.

The Mac mini currently features an Intel HD Graphics 4000 for graphics.

The new Mac mini will likely include Intel's new Iris Pro graphics as seen in the new entry-level iMac.

Right now the Mac mini offers a choice of a 500GB or 1TB hard drive. You can also configure your Mac mini with up to 256GB of flash storage or a Fusion Drive.

You can expect the hard drive options to remain the same, although we also expect to see more SSD or flash options.

The Mac mini currently comes with 4GB RAM, upgradeable to 16GB. It's possible Apple will offer a 8GB RAM option in the new Mac mini, with the potential to upgrade to 32GB.

Currently the Mac mini offers 802.11n Wi-Fi, expect 802.11ac Wi-Fi to be added to the new Mac mini.

How much will the new Mac mini cost?

Prices of the Mac mini currently start at £499, so expect that the new Mac mini to be similarly priced, although as with the iMacs recenty it's possible that we will see very small price increases. When the new iMacs launched recently there was around a 3 percent price increase, so the new Mac mini could start at around £510.

Many years ago (when it launched in 2005) the entry level Mac mini was just £339, we don't expect to se those low prices again.

When will the new Mac mini launch?

The latest rumours suggest that the Mac mini may be updated in February. Read more about the launch date of the Mac mini here.

OUR VERDICT

Apple last updated the Mac mini in October 2012 so it's been a whole year now since it was last refreshed. It seems likely that the company will soon update its low priced Mac. We will update this preview with information based on our Mac mini review when it launches, in the meantime, this is what we've heard so far.

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