After four years from Cupertino back the most compact desktop computer: let’s find out together with our review Apple Mac Mini 2018. It is a very versatile product and, in addition to its own technical characteristics, it could be part of Apple’s growth towards a modular device, as it should be the next Mac Pro.
Let’s start from the packaging in our review Apple Mac mini 2018. Inside the box of purchase, we find the Mac Mini, the power cord with the two-pole connector, a leaflet and a socket to connect the device to the electric current. Inside the box of Mac Mini, there are no Magic Mouse 2 and Magic Keyboard, sold separately.
Design and construction
The lines, the dimensions (19.7cm x 3.6cm x 19.7cm for a weight of 1.3Kg) and the design of the Apple Mac Mini 2018 are the same as the previous generation model. This choice is justified by the will of Apple not to distort this device, not to put in difficulty the users who over the years have bought the Mac mini and around it have developed (even from the dimensional point) their workstation (think to racks with Mac mini in series). The dimensions are the same as in the past but now the shell is made entirely of recycled aluminum (coming from other processing waste) that ensures the same build quality and the same design but with a cost, even ecological, much lower.
At the front of the Apple Mac mini 2018, we find the LED that indicates if the PC is on, while in the diametrically opposite part we find all the ports and inputs available. Here are the power button, 3 USB 3.0 ports, 4 Thunderbolt 3 ports, the Ethernet port, the HDMI input and the one for the earphones.
To use the Mac mini 2018 you can combine any type of trackpad, mouse, and keyboard, even those that Apple offers in conjunction with the iMac Pro.
Passiamo al cuore della nostra recensione Apple Mac mini 2018 scoprendo quali sono le caratteristiche tecniche di questo dispositivo. Sotto la scocca in alluminio riciclato troviamo un processore Intel Core i3-8100B quad-core da 3.6GHz che supporta anche i processori di ottava generazione (dai Core i3 ai Core i7). La scheda grafica è l’Intel UHD 630 da 350-1100Mhz, supportata da 8GB di memoria RAM (espandibile fino a 64GB) e da una memoria interna SSD con diverse capienze che vanno dai 128GB del modello base ai 2TB della versione più capiente. La scelta della memoria interna deve essere definitiva in quanto non c’è possibilità di sostituire l’SSD interno in quanto questo è saldato sulla scheda e lavora in funzione con il Chip T2 Apple Security.
What is this chip? This is the chip that takes care of the security of the storage space by encrypting the data present inside the SSD disk. This work is performed through an AES algorithm that performs operations with 256bit keys associated with a unique identification code of the chip. Moreover, as Apple reports, this chip allows to perform HEVC video transcoding operations with a thirty times higher speed, an added value for professionals working with videos at very high resolutions.
We have already seen what are the inputs on the back of the Apple Mac mini 2018, but now let’s see how to exploit them. You can connect up to three monitors simultaneously using the Thunderbolt 3 and HDMI 2.0 ports to take advantage of the various resolutions supported.
The USB-C / Thunderbolt 3 ports work with two separate controllers, allowing each of the ports to take full advantage of the 40Gbps band, avoiding performance drops when connecting other devices.
We can complain about the absence of the SDHC card reader also because in such a device, particularly oriented to those who work in the photographic world, such an entry would have been very practical and useful.
A product for whom?
Who is it for? So we come to a critical aspect, which is not really a problem but raises some questions. In this review Apple Mac mini 2018 we have seen widely how it is this desktop PC noting technical characteristics of absolute level and performance because the comparison with the previous model (which is four years ago) would be quite ungenerous.
To understand if it is worthwhile or not to buy an Apple Mac mini 2018, in one of the available versions, we must make some general considerations on the desktop sector. The Mac mini 2018 is currently the cheapest Mac on the market, but it is still a high price for a device that is probably not revolutionary and leaves more than a few doubts.
The main doubt is that inherent in the desktop sector that over the years has lost a lot of ground and today a device like the Mac Mini 2018 unless you are a fan of Apple products, is no longer as decisive as it was in past. It certainly remains a product of remarkable quality, quiet, elegant and comfortable, ideal mainly for those professionals who work with macOS and Apple products and who will appreciate this leap in quality in technical performance.
The advantages are obviously those related to performance, silence, size and the ability to choose between different hardware configurations. The most critical issues are those related to the impossibility of replacing the SSD unit and that there is no basic version with a more accessible cost, which would have turned out to be the ideal product to bring more people to this type of device.