The biggest change is obviously the new CPUs, a major upgrade from the 2014 Mac Mini's dual-core chips. For portable computing Apple showed off an updated MacBook Air with lots of its latest frills such as a Retina display, Touch ID, and more. Meanwhile, this compact desktop PC hasn't strayed from its iconic minimal design (but with "2x increased airflow").
Next up is the more powerful Mac mini variant which features a six-core 8th Generation Intel Core i5 processor (Turbo Boost up to 4.1GHz), 8GB DDR4 RAM (2666MHz), Intel UHD Graphics 630, and 256GB PCIe-based SSD storage. In all, the upgrades delver up to 5x processing power, and up to 60 per cent faster graphics. The enclosure is now dark gray, too, or Space Gray in Apple parlance.
A good selection of ports is available around the back of your new Mac Mini.
Considering how much Apple loves to eliminate any sort of port that might be called "legacy", it's a bit of a surprise to look behind the new Mac Mini and find four Thunderbolt 3 ports, two USB Type-A ports, an HDMI 2.0 output, and an Ethernet port with an option for 10-Gb connectivity. For wireless comms 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 5.0 is built-in. This is an update that was a long time coming, but it seems the wait was worth it. The Mac Mini also comes with the new T2 chip that offers 30x faster HEVC video encoding.
The base model with Core i3 processor, 8GB of RAM and 128GB of flash storage asks $799, which is a considerable price hike over the $499 sticker on the previous generation.
There was a glimmer of hope a year ago when Apple CEO Tim Cook reassured fans that Apple would still support the Mac Mini, and rumors had been mounting that we might see a Mac mini in 2018. A 720p FaceTime HD camera and triple microphone setup flesh out the multimedia specs. And audio jack is also available.