Apple mac mini review 2012

The key upgrades include the debut of the Fusion Drive and introduction of Intel Ivy Bridge processors.

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These help to ensure this is the best-performing Mac mini ever, but you wouldn't know it at first glance - this year's model looks identical to its predecessor, and its dimensions have remained the same: It's not ugly or dated: Build quality is beyond reproach too. Fusion Drive was introduced in the latest iMac , is the Fusion Drive. That's double the amount of space supported by Intel's system, and it works in a much more advanced way: OS X and key applications are stored on the SSD for increased responsiveness, while rarely-used software is relegated to the hard disk to preserve system performance.

OS X manages interaction between the SSD and hard disk by itself, so there's no way for the user to intervene. Out-of-the-box, the OS and several of Apple's key apps are installed to the SSD, and the system monitors your behaviour over time - if apps aren't used, they're moved to the hard disk.

Apple Mac mini (Late 2012)

New software is automatically installed to the SSD as long as there's room. Windows users aren't able to access these benefits, however.

Apple's small form factor Mac takes a step forward, but not a giant leap

Specification and performance Apple's other hardware update also follows in the iMac's footsteps, with Ivy Bridge processors replacing the Sandy Bridge technology employed in older Mac minis. There's no sign of desktop chips here, though - this PC is too small, so Apple has had to turn to Intel's mobile parts.

Drive issues

That's not to say the Core iQM used in this particular Mac mini is found wanting in the power department. Its base clock of 2. From what we can tell, it's a problem with the way the graphics card is detecting the monitors, and the RGB signal it is then sending. Make no mistake, it's annoying, but we don't know how widespread the problem is, and how many monitors are affected. We are told that this issue is fixed in The likelihood is, by the time you read this the issue will have been resolved and we'll look like murmuring idiots.

We don't suggest upgrading the 4GB via Apple, but do consider shoving some third-party stuff in there. You'll also want a keyboard and mouse. You might have your own, which will work fine. But we do really think you should go for the Apple Trackpad, it makes the whole experience a lot better. It might be expensive, but we think it's worth the money. The Apple Wireless keyboard is good, and matches the design ethic, but we didn't find it as nice to type on as our Microsoft Natural keyboard. If you type a lot, consider something more set-up for typing, if you use the keyboard for typing web addresses, then stick with the stylish Apple keyboard.

Perhaps the best bit about the mini is the options you have to ditch your expensive cable and satellite system. With iTunes you have an easy route to every TV show, piece of music or film you might want. Obviously, there are exceptions, but factor in Netflix, Lovefilm subscriptions, and the obvious services like iPlayer, 4oD and the like online, and you suddenly have a machine that can supply you entertainment from various sources. We installed Plex, the most impressive media center app we've used - XBMC is more powerful, but harder to configure we've found.

Plex needs another machine with a server running on it - some NAS drives can do this - but once you've got that, it's the most incredible way to handle movies and TV shows.

Mac Mini 2012 review

All of this, with the Mac mini's HDMI output means that, if you can afford it, it will become a centerpiece of your home cinema. It's only missing a Blu-ray player, but to be honest, if your broadband can cope, iTunes p downloads are very nearly as good. Intel graphics issue aside, we've enjoyed our time with the Mini.

It really is powerful enough for most computer use. You could use this as your work PC all day, and never struggle with slowdowns or crashes. It's also prettier and smaller than almost any Windows-based PC you can buy, and for those corporates that need Windows, it can happily run Microsoft's OS.

Apple Mac mini (Late )

As a media centre, there are all sorts of options. The iPhone app means that you don't need a trackpad or keyboard to operate the Mini from your sofa, and third-party apps like Plex deliver HD streaming to your TV with style and beauty.

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  4. There are lots of ways to get your Mac into your TV world, although of course there are some advantages to just getting a cheaper Apple TV and using your Mini to keep your media and be your desktop computer. We would love to see Apple move towards using a mobile nVidia GPU in the Mini, as this would turn it into something that could even be used for gaming, although the Intel Graphics solution does have some gaming ability, it's not as good as a dedicated GPU.

    Our only real reservation is the price. For this kind of money, you're almost at MacBook Air prices, and that's a slightly more tempting offer. YouTube Instagram Facebook Twitter. Lovely to look at Argue if you want, but Jony Ive always manages to produce something that will impress the most hard-hearted of Apple sceptics. Trackpad is a must With all the fuss about Windows 8 being a touchscreen-focused OS, people forget how good OS X is at "touch" gestures. Slight graphics issues We tested our review sample with two monitors, both Samsung, and both had an issue with washed out colours via HDMI.

    Expensive when you factor in the extras We are of the opinion that all PCs and Macs should have the maximum possible amount of RAM installed. Cable cutter's favourite Perhaps the best bit about the mini is the options you have to ditch your expensive cable and satellite system.

    The entry-level new Mac Mini gets a performance boost

    Verdict Intel graphics issue aside, we've enjoyed our time with the Mini. Apple Mac mini deals. Popular In Laptops. Is there a larger inch plus MacBook Pro incoming? What are Wi-Fi 5 and Wi-Fi 6? Why Wi-Fi is introducing catchy names for different standards. How to build and upgrade your own gaming PC. Microsoft Build dates revealed: