The Mac mini Pro: It wouldn’t take much for Apple to make the Mac mini into a modern, professional-level machine

“Think about the 2012 Mac mini. It’s the last nearly perfect desktop machine Apple has introduced,” David Gewirtz writes for ZDNet. “You can open that bad boy up. You can replace memory, drives, and… even fix the fan.”

“Replacing the fan is a breeze. Twist the bottom slightly to open the case, unscrew three screws, pop off the connector, and do it all in reverse with the new fan. You’re done,” Gewirtz writes. “I own four of these 2012 machines. They’re that good. But, alas, they’re not good enough for the workloads I want to run now.”

“Apple updated the Mac mini once more, in 2014, but it removed the perfection: It’s now a closed box. You can’t upgrade or fix most of what’s inside. That makes me sad. Apple said its delaying the new Mac Pro until 2019. I (and most power users) can’t wait another 18 months or more to get my job done,” Gewirtz writes. “What if, instead, Apple updated the Mac mini? What would it need to do to make this thing perfect again? As it turns out, not much.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: This of course won’t happen because it would require Apple to get up off their lazy, confused, and misguided asses and pay some attention to the Mac.

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39 Comments

    1. Simple. Start with the 2012 quad-core i7 model and update it with the latest Intel CPU and a GPU capable of supporting 4K @ 60fps. I don’t see how that is asking so much from Apple where they need to have a whole army of engineers to build some closed Mac Mini with a fancier case. If Apple was paying any attention at all to their refurb page, they’d see older Mac Minis sell out almost instantly. Think if Apple actually designed a decent modern version. Of course, Apple doesn’t do things that way.

    2. Oh, Apple cares alright. Unfortunately, it appears that what it cares most about are its margins. Why else would it push the iMac as the desktop for everyone?

    1. Apple will never let us have what we really want, if they did sales would skyrocket and they wouldn’t want that.

      I’ve learned my lesson, moving my pro needs to a PC Workstation and away from what is now a fairly doomed Mac category – the Mac Pro. The Mac Mini may well be in that category too.

      I now join the chorus of those wanting to replace the leadership at Apple. Constant disappointment will do that to even the most previously rabid fan.

      1. I reluctantly started moving my work to a PC last spring. I’m happy I did, especially when I see what Apple is selling these days.

        My girlfriend just reluctantly bought a new 15″ MacBook Pro (non-touch bar). It took 2 hours of software updates out of the BOX before it was ready! Ridiculous.

        My Windows machine runs Linux without any hassles as well as all the Adobe software just fine. I don’t miss Final Cut either. AND driver / software support is so much better on Windows.

        I can share web login info across machines using Firefox. The only thing I NEED from Mac is mail (still old fashioned) and I’m sure I can get used to a new client. I’ll miss messaging but whatever.

        So long, Apple. It was fun while it lasted.

        1. FWIW, while there’s things to hate about Microsoft Outlook, at least when on an alphabetical listing (such as of Sender), you can hit a key on the keyboard and it will jump to that letter.

          Unlike Apple Mail. Even Eudora had this feature back in the 1980s.

      2. Would not even have imagined this sort of sentiment (which I happen to agree wholeheartedly) in pre-Cook days. What is he thinking?!?!
        Apple has changed….

        1. I know. You can only shake your head in disgust at the tremendous Mac mismanagement. They think issuing one iMac Pro forgives all the other neglect and bungling. They pat themselves on the back, check their incredible personal bank balances with glee, summarily ignore all other things Mac (“Ah, let the upgrade go another year, they’ll never notice – just keep the same price”) and move on while thinking “JOB WELL DONE!’

          And then go back to their lattes, next-gen iPhone work and Apple Park finery selections.

  1. The wealthiest company in history can’t handle hiring enough talent to manage doing more than a couple things at one time. Everything is managed by a handful of VPs who are multi-millionaires and have lost the drive. It is now the milking of every dollar out of user base. Get people who are hungry to create great things in charge again.

  2. I never before advocated that Apple follow Microsoft’s lead and license its OS to other hardware builders. Never, not even in the most painful preCook days.

    Today however it seems obvious that Apple can’t walk and chew gum at the same time. If the fashionista crew running the show now can’t figure out how to add value to the Mac with annual updates, then maybe the time has come. Car makers are more nimble than Apple now.

  3. The Mac Mini would be good, but it’s way more important to come out with a PRODUCT ({[Red]}) iPhone. No time for real products, but lot’s of time for empty virtue signaling.

    1. FWIW yup, sad to say this “long” AAPL shareholder sure would like an open mac mini w/ the latest intel i9 chip, I’d also like two easy to access SATA 2.5″ solid state hard drives,… ability to upgrade “memory” and various ports (kinda like on the 2015 non-Retina 13-inch MacBook Pro),…

      huh,… if there were a prosumer mac-mini,… then what about an old school mac book pro w/ all the stuff mentioned above AND a retina “high resolution” display?

  4. I can’t believe anyone thinks the Mac mini can be turned into a professional machine. It just does not, and never will, have the thermodynamics chops to be a true professional machine. Just look at what it took to make the so called “pro” iMac Pro. To put that much capability into an iMac Apple chose to take the easy way out (and the least costly way out in order to maximize profits) and make the system virtually sealed and not upgradeable. Apple couldn’t even do that with the Mac mini without RADICALLY changing the form factor of the box.

    This all comes back to the lack of a true Pro machine from Apple since 2012 (and really since 2008 as up through 2012 they were just minor upgrades and evolutions from the 2008 machines).

    1. Re Shadowself
      H-P has already made it and it costs less than a topped out Mac mini. Apple’s problem is the damn thin obsession and consumer lock in.
      Oh this unit costs less than a Mac mini and comes with 3 years of on site repair- no trips to the Apple Store.

  5. Once again, there is no reason to make a desktop machine smaller than a pack of cigarettes, or carve it out of a solid block of adamantium—especially a desktop machine that’s supposed to be the “cheap” option! You made iMacs out of plastic for years and they looked great, why use overpriced materials on your supposedly “affordable” Mac mini? A desktop machine also does not need to have sides crafted like the edges of a samurai sword. Make the edges big enough to put the SD/USB slot where I can see dumb thing without fumbling around.

    1. Give me 3.5″ HDs–they are cheaper, bigger, faster—there is ZERO reason to use 2.5″ HDs in a desktop machine.

    2. Don’t worry about size and weight, I’m not planning on carrying my desktop around the neighborhood. You could make a MacMini twice as big as the current model, and it would still be completely marvelous.

    3. For desktop machines accessibility to HDs, RAM, fans, power supply, and a video card are WAY more important than almost any size/weight considerations.

    4. Give me ports! Ethernet, SD, USB 3.0. as well as Thunderbolt. (Okay, I’ll settle for a bunch of USB C ports, but don’t leave out Ethernet or the SD slot in the FRONT where I actually use it!)

    5. Did I already mention, give me a couple ports on the front where I actually use them.

    FYI, the current top of the line Mac mini at $999 has
    8GB RAM,
    integrated video,
    1 TB Fusion HD
    NO Keyboard, NO Mouse, NO cables.

    Meanwhile the current 21″ iMac at only $1299 also has
    8GB RAM
    2GB Radeon Pro
    1 TB HD (non-Fusion)
    a 4K screen
    FaceTime camera
    a mouse,
    a keyboard
    a lightning to USB cable
    Thunderbolt 3

    DOES ANYONE AT APPLE REALIZE HOW RIDICULOUS THE Mac mini’s price points are compared to the iMac?

    Apple has got to be able to make the Mac mini cheaper!

    But we got a red iPhone. Woohoo!

    1. Apple needs to take a look at Intel’s latest Hades Canyon NUC: https://www.techradar.com/reviews/intel-hades-canyon-nuc

      Maybe Apple should take that and put an Apple logo on it. That Intel NUC is a beast yet with all the money Apple has, they can’t build something close to that which runs OSX. Apple is honestly making me sick using $100B for stock buybacks but can’t build a decent Mac Mini. What is the matter with that company. I couldn’t cost them that much.

    2. “DOES ANYONE AT APPLE REALIZE HOW RIDICULOUS THE Mac mini’s price points are compared to the iMac?”
      Yes, they do. And they want anyone looking at a mini to say “That there iMac is a better deal” then leave the store with an iMac. The mini was a stopgap project specifically to make transition to macOS easy for anyone that already owned a moist keyboard and monitor (that should be mouse, but It’s funny so I left it:) It’s pretty clear that Apple doesn’t see value in updating it. Especially not since anyone that buys one today is likely paying Apple a grater markup than on anything else!

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