"If I were recommending a starter system to someone (who hadn't already taken a side in the Mac versus Windows holy war), I wouldn't hesitate to send them in the direction of the Mac Mini," writes PC World US senior editor Rebecca Freed.

As the affordable Mac mini seems set to generate more Windows users to switch to easier to manage, more robust, less virus-ridden Mac minis, praise in the PC press becomes vital to Apple.

"This system has the same advantages and drawbacks as a typical notebook (except it doesn't have a screen)", Reed writes. She praises its portability, but criticises its upgradability.

"Its external power brick is about a quarter of the size of the box itself", she adds.

"Though it's small - more compact than the average lunchbox - this system isn't rickety. It handled most tasks I tried gracefully, without hesitating or freezing," she said.

Apple's new low-cost system also maintains the Apple CEO mantra, "computers should be quiet".

"One pleasant surprise was how quiet the Mini is", writes Freed.