Final verdict on $599 Mac Mini: That don't impress me much

After taking a hard look at the $599 Mac Mini, our OS-neutral assessment of the refresh is that its onboard features and performance benchmarks don't stack up to other budget PCs on the market.

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After taking a hard look at the $599 Mac Mini, our OS-neutral assessment of the refresh is that its onboard features and performance benchmarks don't stack up to other budget PCs on the market, where you can spend $100 less and pick up a PC like the Acer Aspire X1700-U3700A, which provides a faster CPU clock speed, three times more RAM, and more than five times the storage space, not to mention a variety of superior internal expansion opportunities.

Apple's push toward environmental efficiencies deserves a shout-out here. Both of the new Mac Minis adhere to Energy Star's stringent 5.0 requirements and achieve the Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool (EPEAT)'s highest "gold rating," where previous Minis only reached silver. We used our own Watts Up consumption tool, compared the Mini to a competing desktop, and found that Apple only uses 15.4 watts of power compared to the other system's 70.9 watts at idle.

Interested in our final rating and reading more?

Check out our full review of the low-end Apple Mac Mini.

About the author

Justin Yu covers headphones and peripherals for CNET. When he's not wading through Web gulch or challenging colleagues to typing tests, you can find him making fun of technology with Jeff Bakalar every afternoon on The 404 show.

 

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