Apple unveils all-new Mac mini with a massive increase in performance

Apple today gave Mac mini a massive increase in performance. Now with quad- and 6-core processors, up to 64GB of faster memory and blazing fast all-flash storage, the new Mac mini delivers an insane five times faster performance, making it the most powerful Mac mini ever made.1 And with Thunderbolt 3 ports, the Apple T2 Security Chip and a 10Gb Ethernet option, the new Mac mini is a faster and more capable desktop that can do so much more.

“Mac mini is loved by customers for its ability to be used in incredibly diverse environments — from casual desktop use, to live professional performances, to multiple Mac mini computers powering through video renderings and compiling software code, to racks of thousands in giant app build farms — anywhere a small-but-mighty Mac is needed to get the job done,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing, in a statement. “Mac mini customers are going to flip over the new Mac mini. It has more than five times the performance, up to 6-core desktop-class processors, an Apple T2 Security Chip, faster memory up to 64GB, high-performance all-flash storage, and is packed with advanced ports including four Thunderbolt 3, two USB-A, HDMI video, audio and Ethernet up to 10Gbps. All of this power is packed into the same size enclosure as before, perfect for customers updating or creating all-new installations where Mac mini is the ideal solution.”

Five Times Faster and More Powerful Than Ever

Now with quad- and 6-core 8th-generation Intel Core processors with Turbo Boost Speeds up to 4.6GHz and Intel UHD graphics, Mac mini delivers up to five times faster performance than the previous generation.1 Mac mini now rips through traditional desktop tasks like photo and video editing, music creation and software development, and crushes pro workflows including video transcoding, code compiling and live musical performances. And with up to 64GB of 2666 MHz memory, Mac mini can load larger files into memory, run more virtual machines or manipulate even larger data sets. Every Mac mini now features the speed and reliability of all-flash storage. With capacities up to 2TB, the SSDs on Mac mini are up to four times faster, so working with large files and opening apps is quicker than ever.

New Mac mini delivers five times faster performance.
New Mac mini delivers five times faster performance.

 
Apple T2 Security Chip Comes to Mac mini

The Apple T2 Security Chip brings industry-leading security to your Mac mini. The T2 features an SSD controller with on-the-fly data encryption so everything stored on the SSD is automatically and fully encrypted. The Secure Enclave in T2 ensures that software loaded during the boot process has not been tampered with. T2 also features HEVC video transcoding that’s up to an incredible 30 times faster, enabling pro users to work more quickly with higher resolution video throughout their workflow.

Mac mini now features the Apple T2 Security Chip, enabling on-the-fly data encryption, secure boot and up to 30 times faster HEVC video transcoding.
Mac mini now features the Apple T2 Security Chip, enabling on-the-fly data encryption, secure boot and up to 30 times faster HEVC video transcoding.

 
Higher Performance I/O With Thunderbolt 3 and 10Gb Ethernet

With four Thunderbolt 3 ports, twice as many Thunderbolt ports as the previous generation and each with double the performance, the new Mac mini can connect to high speed storage, 4K and 5K Thunderbolt displays, and output video in three formats. Mac mini also features an HDMI 2.0 port, two USB-A ports, an audio jack and Gigabit Ethernet, so it can connect to almost anything. And for super fast networking performance, Mac mini offers a 10Gb Ethernet option for the first time.

Mac mini now offers faster and expanded I/O to allow it to connect to almost anything, including four Thunderbolt 3 ports, an HMDI 2.0, two USB-A ports, an audio jack and Gigabit Ethernet, as well as a 10Gb Ethernet option.
Mac mini now offers faster and expanded I/O to allow it to connect to almost anything, including four Thunderbolt 3 ports, an HMDI 2.0, two USB-A ports, an audio jack and Gigabit Ethernet, as well as a 10Gb Ethernet option.

 
100 Percent Recycled Aluminum Enclosure and a Smaller Carbon Footprint

Now in a gorgeous new space gray finish, every new Mac mini enclosure uses an Apple-designed aluminum alloy made from 100 percent recycled aluminum for the first time, which has the same strength, durability and beautiful finish as the aluminum in all Apple products.2 The Mac mini also features the use of more post-consumer recycled plastic in parts like the foot. All together these advancements help to reduce the carbon footprint of the new Mac mini by nearly 50 percent.

macOS Mojave

All new Macs come with macOS Mojave, the latest version of the world’s most advanced desktop operating system, with new features inspired by pros but designed for everyone. In macOS Mojave, a new Dark Mode transforms the desktop with a dramatic new look that puts the focus on user content. The new Stacks feature organizes messy desktops by automatically stacking files into neat groups. Familiar iOS apps, including News, Stocks, Voice Memos and Home, are now available on the Mac for the first time. FaceTime now adds support for group calling, and the Mac App Store gets a full redesign featuring rich editorial content and the addition of apps from top developers, including Microsoft and Adobe.

Pricing and Availability

Starting at $799, the new Mac mini is available to order today on apple.com. It will be available in Apple retail stores and through Apple Authorized Resellers starting Wednesday, November 7. Additional technical specifications, configure-to-order options and accessories are available online at apple.com/mac.

Source: Apple Inc.

MacDailyNews Note: We max’ed out a new Mac mini for you to see what it costs:

• 3.2GHz 6‑core 8th‑generation Intel Core i7 (Turbo Boost up to 4.6GHz)
• 64GB 2666MHz DDR4
• Intel UHD Graphics 630
• 2TB SSD storage
• 10 Gigabit Ethernet (Nbase-T Ethernet with support for 1Gb, 2.5Gb, 5Gb, and 10Gb Ethernet using RJ‑45 connector)

$4,199.00

66 Comments

      1. It’s certainly priced like it is. $4200 with these options:

        3.2GHz 6‑core 8th‑generation Intel Core i7
        64GB 2666MHz DDR4
        Intel UHD Graphics 630
        2TB SSD
        10 Gigabit Ethernet

        ouch.

        For reference, a Trashcan costs $4200 when configured thus:

        3.5GHz 6-core with 12MB of L3 cache
        64GB (4x16GB) of 1866MHz DDR3 ECC
        Dual AMD FirePro D500 GPUs with 3GB of GDDR5 VRAM each
        256GB PCIe-based SSD

        1. That’s a rather steep price. I just want a model that can easily power a 4K HDTV at 60fps using the HDMI port without stuttering. Maybe a version that will cost around $1500 should be good enough.

          1. I can get the Mac Mini I want for $1700 with a faster processor and slightly more memory and storage.
            6-core i7
            16GB memory
            512GB SSD

            I don’t need the faster ethernet and the Intel UHD 630 is what the doctor ordered for 4K at 60fps. $1700 for five trouble-free years of use is a bargain to me. I’m sorry for those who think this Mac Mini is too expensive to be worthwhile.

  1. No news on the iMac from what I have read.

    So??? Do I replace my 2011 iMac with a new beefed up Mac Mini and and additional items like a monitor, etc.? What do you folks think?

    1. How much $ do you have and what wo you use your computer for, Josh?

      We’ll find out in a few days how the new Mini performance stacks up against the current iMacs. You can see how your iMac stacks up to later models: http://browser.geekbench.com/mac-benchmarks

      You will see that single core performance, which casual users appreciate, is about 60% faster in a 2017 iMac with i7 chip than a 2011 iMac with i7 CPU. I suspect the 2018 Mac Mini with 6 cores will be on par or slightly better than the 2017 iMacs.

      For sustained performance, multicore scores are much more important (a major sore point from professionals who rely on Apple since Apple didn’t progress hardly at all from 2010 to 2016 on this).

      Depending on your needs you will have to decide how much $$$ to spend. The new Mac Mini will not outperform the multicore processing of, say, a 2010 Mac Pro with 12 core X5670 chipset, but it will offer faster I/O and latest connections. The most capable performance Apple offers, which is still not industry leading, is last year’s pricey iMac Pro. Next year’s Mac Pro is almost certain to be even more $.

      If you’re still running a 2011 machine then I suspect getting the latest multicore performance isn’t your highest priority. So if you want the best value and some future proofing, $1 to 2k will get you the new Mac Mini with all the bells and whistles you want, with a good array of current and legacy ports (FINALLY APPLE GOT IT RIGHT), and you can buy displays as good or better than the iMac screens in larger sizes. You might lose the Facetime camera, but big deal. Read the reviews and test drive them at your local Apple Store, let us know what you find!

    2. Is it a need or a want? Have you already maxed out your 2011 iMac with memory and the fastest, biggest SSD you can afford? If not, you’ll find it’s like having a brand new computer.

  2. Ordered
    3.2GHz 6‑core 8th‑generation Intel Core i7 (Turbo Boost up to 4.6GHz)
    16GB 2666MHz DDR4

    Trading in a 2015 era MacBook Pro 13″ and getting a nice trade in from Apple.

    With my iPad Pro, I rarely use the laptop anymore. Either Desktop or iPad Pro. Not upgrading my 13″ iPad Pro this cycle. The mini should make a nice unit for the home office.

  3. I can see if you want it for a server farm but way over priced for a desktop. I’d be looking at the iMac Pro.
    Once again Apples pricing for SSD upgrades are completely over the top.

    1. Yes, the SSD upgrades are absolutely killer.
      1. Still don’t understand why they don’t offer Fusion drives as a lower cost option.
      2. HD should be user replaceable
      3. GPU should have more options
      4. Could make the footprint 1″ or 2″ bigger to make these options possible, and no one would care. It’s a desktop, it doesn’t have to be as small and light as possible.

        1. Synth makes valid points. The mini is a desktop machine, not a portable. If Apple wanted the mini to be really user friendly, it would have offered a fresh case design with two drives so that one could have a Time Machine archive without needing to buy an external drive. With proper drive bays, the user could then choose his future growth needs, which may include HD or SSD or a mix. HD are still the way to go for archives. SSD is only superior for access/read/write speeds. In all other aspects, HDs are usually the better choice.

          Of course this is Cook’s Apple, so user constraint is in his DNA. Offering too much user convenience would cost a few dollars in unit costs, less than Cook’s last annual bonus. Priorities demonstrated….

          1. Honestly, I’d NEVER use an internal drive as the backup drive; if something goes wrong with the computer electrically, it’s likely to take out your backup as well.

            External, or network, drives are the way to go for backup.

            1. There’s merits to both internal & external.

              Reason being that if you’re configured to run hourly backups, then even an external drive is going to be electrically connected 99% of the time. Similarly, a drive that’s attached via network is still vulnerable to a single lightning strike, fire, etc.

              As such, the recipient of the ‘constant’ data backups still has these single point of failure risks regardless of if its still inside the case, attached by USB-C, or down the hallway in a NAS. That risk exists until it is remote-site’d.

              As such, there’s no harm in putting it inside the case as an internal: you’re still going to need a removable media that can be isolated (taken off power & off site).

              To this end, while you can skip the constantly attached drive and just plug in an external once per week, the downside of doing this is that you’re putting “6.9 days” worth of data at risk between backups. Given how cheap a ~4TB drive is, just add it as a local/internal…better yet, have two bays and add two of them.

        2. Oh my.
          iMacs offer the Fusion Drive option or the SSD option, why can’t the Mac mini?

          Absolutely no valid reason Apple is nixing the HD option.
          High end A/V pros could still choose SSDs but…

          Average users shouldn’t need to spend $800 for a 1TB upgrade on an $800 computer. Apple has created a very reasonably priced basic computer which is insanely expensive to upgrade to normal storage levels. At least offer two levels of SSDs! An 1TB SDD should not cost $800!

          Think about that people! It is absolutely ridiculous in 2018.

          1. Well pros might be happy to pop for external drives but for average users, external SSDs are painfully expen$$$ive.

            For example, choosing two drives from the same company:

            A LaCie d2 Thunderbolt 3 with spinny disk drive costs ~$220 for 4TB, read/write speeds are up to 240 MB/sec. In this instance, having TB3 is of no real advantage because the bottleneck is drive speed. But you can get up to 10 TB of space in a nice little case for a bit more S.

            A LaCie Bolt3 SSD drive, again with Thunderbolt 3 connection, with only 2 TB of storage costs $2000; read/write speeds are 2800 MB/sec. That’s taking advantage of TB3 but is way to expensive for most users and it’s only 2TB.

            With great speed comes great price. If Apple was kind, it would save its users the cost of external enclosures, power supplies, and cables, and just let people configure a second internal drive of their choosing if and when they need it. Apple could even use its strong purchasing power to sell these commodity components for its loyal customers to install themselves without the 200% Apple Tax markup. Wouldn’t that be nice?

            1. Given the ongoing rudeness of the Apple Tax, I’m increasingly of the opinion of only paying Apple for the minimum internal SSD to run the OS, and move all of my data off the the machine into an ugly dongle box.

              Yes, I do realize the irony of this in regards to the Trash Can Mac Pro.

              But at least for the mini, there’s the form factor being sold of the likes of the OWC miniStack (USB 3.1) as something that isn’t too ugly. A home/DIY’er could pop an SSD into it at a net price out the door of roughly ~$400/TB. And the more interesting question would be if you could RAID0 a couple of them together to get the speeds up.

              FWIW, I’d also expect the 3rd party market to repeat this sort of form factor but with slots for 2-4 M.2 sticks over USB-C as another alternative and performance boost vs SATA. Won’t be as cheap, but it won’t be as pricey as Apple is asking.

  4. Wow enormously disappointed. This is what they see as having “pro” uses. Soldered in non upgradable 2TB SSD for $1400. Soldered in non upgradable 64gb of RAM for $1400. Top end machine has only 64gb or ram, 2TB storage and goes for $4200 without apple care or tax.

    Apple totally doesn’t get it anymore. What a total disappointment.

          1. Compare specs and prices between a new iMac and a Mac mini:

            $1799 Mac mini: 16GB RAM, 1TB SSD, integrated graphics, NO mouse, NO keyboard, NO monitor

            $1999 27″ iMac: 16GB RAM, 1TB Fusion HD, Radeon Pro 570 with 4GB video memory graphics, Magic Mouse, Keyboard, 5K Monitor.

            Does anyone at Apple even look at this absurd pricing structure? You should be able to spec out a Mac mini with modest specs like those above and not pay almost the same amount as for an 27″ Mac with 5K monitor, 4GB GPU, KB, and mouse. This makes no sense in any universe.

    1. So you can see the guts if you scroll down here:

      https://www.apple.com/mac-mini/?afid=p238%7Cs8I4kbUTZ-dc_mtid_20925top39173_pcrid_307882469438&cid=wwa-us-kwgo-mac-slid–

      So the ram is upgradable. I’m not positive but it looks like the SSD is not soldered in, but is ‘hovering’ over the main board. I suspect it’s a similar connector to what is in the iMac pro. A proprietary slot of some sort. I suspect it is also tied to the T2 chip like on the iMac Pro, which likely kills the ability to use that slot for anything other than an original apple SSD. In which case, it might as well be soldered in, as it is practically not upgradable.

      Which is a shame if true. I hope Im wrong. If this thing has upgradable RAM and internal storage, that will make it a huge hit.

      1. I read it differently, with emphasis on the $1400 for what you can buy elsewhere for half that.

        For example, Crucial sells 32GB iMac SODIMM kits for $298.

        The longstanding Apple policy of raping its customers for RAM is getting ridiculous.

    2. The RAM does appear to be socketed. I don’t know where the SSD is in the photo, so I can’t say.

      It’s a bit pricey, but I’m not disappointed because I expect this from Apple. Apple is offering the options I want, so I can’t complain. My only concern is thermal throttling. The fan my 2012 i7 Mac Mini had, didn’t do a very good job of removing heat.

  5. Well, I guess… What I’m left to do now is to take my older 2011 iMac and decomission it, use a new Mac Mini as the computer and utilize the decomissioned iMac’s display as my monitor. That’s what they’ve left me with…

    1. Thanks. I was wrong, my bad on the RAM. I posted above re the SSD. I suspect it’s practically not upgradable like on the iMac Pro. Hope I’m wrong. If it is upgradable this will be a new golden era for the mac mini. If not, lot of people are going to pass on it.

      1. I haven’t seen it but my guess is that the SSD will be on a daughter card, not soldered, and the reason is that Apple only solders RAM when they only have two options for capacity as on laptops. The mini’s 4 different configurations would have to be a swappable card so that Apple wouldn’t be stuck with too many of a certain unpopular capacity.

    1. I actually agree with regard to functions. After 4 years of stupidity Apple finally got the proper connections included on a Mac. Looks like it covers all the bases for casual users.

      Performance remains to be seen. Clearly Apple thinks external GPU boxes are the future. That makes the price even more objectionable than it already is.

      Big drawback is drive configuration. Hate Apple’s decision to use the old chassis with soldered drives. Should be 2 drive bays allowing user flexibility and growth for the future. At the price Apple charges, there is no excuse.

      Now the puzzling thing: they paint it with dark paint, which since 2013 on the Mac seemed to signify Pro. I guess not. Dark grey is now just the default paint for Apples forthcoming Macs? Why do laptops get color choices and desktops do not? Strange marketing games.

      1. At first sight I am suitably impressed. However I will say that listening to Cook go on about how people love the Mac and love their Mac minis one can’t help but ask (or swear) as to why the company has neglected it/them god so bl**dy long. It’s always about letting things slip time wise just so they can make a big impact belatedly. Shows they or at least Cook doesnt love his customers as much as they love their Macs.

      2. Are you new to Macintosh? Apple does not compete at the cheapest price point. They can’t. Cheap = Junk and Apple get’s roasted anytime they have a product that isn’t the best. See the most recent Keyboard-gate on MacBook Pros to see what I mean. Point: don’t expect Apple to meet prices you see on a Google search for the cheapest RAM that exists.

        1. IFixit teardowns show that Apple uses the same supply chain as any other reputable computer maker. Apple may spend a fortune on design and development in California; maybe Apple does choose nice case materials and finishes. But I don’t know where you get the idea that Apples commodity subcomponents are special. Apple is nowhere near high end. Today Apple simply offers less user choice in Macs than before. Apple charges a premium not because the hardware is better but to cover OSX costs and a 30-50% profit margin, at least twice what any other mainstream electronics maker charges.

          You could easily blow Apple out of the water with superior hardware, there are many small custom PC makers that make Apple look chintzy. Falcon NW for one example. The Fragbox is what a real mini PC should be.

          If I was Tim Cook, I would license Falcon NW or a similar custom builder to make elite Macs. Honda has its Acura division. Apple needs a better Mac builder badly. Ive and crew are out of innovative ideas. They sure as hell have no understanding of gaming PCs, one of the most profitable segments of the computer biz.

    2. Yes indeed, Jimbo!

      After what seemed like an eternity, I was pleasantly surprised to hear the following from MDN’s live notes post:

      • Apple is here to talk about their most creative product. Of course, that all starts with the Mac!
      • Apple video of Mac-using creatives “Behind the Mac”

      Keep the Pro train chugging along..,

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