This content is rated TV-MA, and is for viewers 18 years or older. Are you of age?
Sorry, you are not old enough to view this content.
First Look: Apple Mac Mini (hands-on)
About Video Comments (0 ) Transcript

First Look: Apple Mac Mini (hands-on)

2:41 /

Apple has improved the value of the Mac Mini as well as its general appeal thanks to its faster performance. The Fusion Drive is also a nice touch for the enthusiast who might want it.

Hi. I'm Rich Brown of CNET. Today, we're gonna look at Apple's new Mac Mini. So, this is the 799 Mac Mini config but it also has $250 upgrade to Apple's new Fusion Drive. That means this is a quad-core Core i7 Mac, with 4 gigs of RAM and a Terabyte hard drive, as well as 128GB Solid State Drive. Now, aside from the Fusion Drive, there's actually not that much different about this new Mac from the last version. It does have Intel's most recent Ivy Bridge CPUs in here, so that's nice. You get a good speed benefit and Apple has also brought Core i7 down here when before you could only get Core i5, at least on the non-server models. Otherwise though, the system is basically identical on the outside. There's still no optical drive so Apple's sticking with that, no surprise there. And on the back, the ports are exactly the same. You got power, Ethernet, FireWire 800, HDMI, thunderbolt, four USB ports, audio in and headphone out. You also have the SDXC card slot. Now, there are actually some interesting things, you know, these are USB 3.0 ports not USB 2.0, so it's a lot faster than the previous version and that's nice. The Mac Mini also now have some ports that you won't find on the new iMacs, specifically the FireWire 800 and the 2 audio ports. There's only a single audio port in the new iMac. But the big technical difference of the system really is the Fusion Drive. So, what that is essentially is a way to give you all the speed benefits of the solid-state hard drive as well as all the big storage line benefits of the standard drive. Now, there are some other similar hybrid hard drives out there that work in a similar way, but the way Apple has it set up is that it's really kind of a seamless process with Fusion. [unk] that Fusion will automatically speed up access to your files that you use most frequently. I found in our testing that it actually works pretty well especially with file RET. File reads are a little bit harder to tell. Apps like Photoshop and certain games have characteristics that get in a way of the file system and make it more than just about load speed or CPU calculations stuff that goes on with the background. So, Fusion can't always be as effective as maybe you want it to. So, it was a kind of a pricey upgrade. It costs 250 bucks and it pushes the 799 config up to $1,049. That's pretty expensive for Mac that's generally considered we have budget priced option. Overall though, I know that there's a passionate niche of Mac Mini fans out there and they tend to find out tons of creative uses for the system and I expect they will certainly appreciate faster drive access. Even if you don't opt for Fusion, the Core i7 chip provides a nice speed boost. It makes this actually pretty competitive compared to Windows PCs in the same price range. Of course, it also has Apple's Hallmark attention to design, and this is still one most attractive PCs out there. So, overall, Apple's improved the value to Mac Mini as well as the general appeal, thanks to it's fast performance. Fusion Drive is also a nice touch for the enthusiast who might want it. So, I'm Rich Brown. This is Apple's new Mac Mini.

New releases

Brainwave tech could help ALS patients...
2:32 August 30, 2014
Patients with Lou Gehrig's Disease can become paralyzed, and technology is now being developed that could...
Play video
ALS patient more independent with...
3:12 August 30, 2014
Eric Valor has been living with ALS, or Lou Gehrig's disease, for nearly a decade, but he says technology,...
Play video
2014 Mazda MX-5 Miata Grand Touring...
22:01 August 29, 2014
25 years of Miata: Why it still works. How your commute is worse than just boring, read the secret information...
Play video
Google tests drone delivery, iPhone...
2:54 August 29, 2014
Look up in the sky for a special delivery from Google's Project Wing, keep waiting for that "iWatch," and...
Play video
Make your Chromebook more PC-l...
1:58 August 29, 2014
Do you wish your Chromebook could feel a little more like a regular PC? Here are some simple tips on how to...
Play video
Nvidia Shield Tablet: Best tablet...
2:49 August 29, 2014
The 8-inch Shield Tablet boasts Nvidia's latest powerful Tegra K1 processor and graphics, and plugs into a...
Play video
Indie Games of Summer
3:14 August 29, 2014
Five indie console games that you should check out right now.
Play video
The Lumo Lift is a fashionable...
1:34 August 29, 2014
Track your posture, step count, and calorie burn with this small magnetic fitness device.
Play video