Mac mini M2 overview: Apple’s cheaper, tiny however mighty pc | Apple

The back of the Mac mini M2 Pro showing various ports.

Apple’s least expensive desktop pc has had a value minimize and an influence improve – making it one of many smallest, least expensive and most adaptable Macs but.

The Mac mini begins at £649 ($599/A$999) – £50 lower than the 2020 mannequin – and has Apple’s newest M2 or M2 Professional chips as used within the MacBook Air and MacBook Professional to nice impact.

The tiny aluminium field is in regards to the measurement of a hardback guide, measuring slightly below 20cm all sides and fewer than 4cm thick. It’s simple to suit nearly wherever: on a desk, mounted underneath one, in a TV cupboard, on the again of the monitor, caught to a wall – wherever you possibly can attain with an influence cable.

The back of the Mac mini M2 Pro showing various ports.
The facility button is on the again. It has a small speaker for primary sounds, however no microphones or cameras. {Photograph}: Samuel Gibbs/The Guardian

Like a traditional desktop PC you merely plug the Mac mini right into a display, keyboard and mouse, all of which could be purchased with it at nice expense – or you need to use your current gear. I related an Asus 4K monitor and Logitech Bluetooth mouse and keyboard to the mini to set it up, utilizing them through the size of the overview with out problem.

It runs macOS 13.2 Ventura like all latest Macs and has the identical screen-sharing and proximity options because the MacBook laptops. Meaning you need to use a recent iPad as a second screen, use the connected mouse and keyboard to control an iPad or other Mac and use an iPhone as a wireless webcam, which works rather well.


  • Processor: Apple M2 or M2 Professional

  • RAM: 8GB, 16GB, 24GB or 32GB

  • Storage: 256GB, 512GB, 1TB, 2TB, 4TB or 8TB SSD

  • Working system: macOS 13.2 Ventura

  • Connectivity: wifi 6E, Bluetooth 5.3, 2x USB-A, 2 or 4x USB 4/Thunderbolt 4, HDMI 2.1, Ethernet, headphones

  • Dimensions: 197mm x 197mm x 35.8mm

  • Weight: 1.18kg to 1.28kg

M2 energy and effectivity

The bottom of the Mac mini M2.
A plastic foot stands out of the bottom to barely elevate the mini’s aluminium body. {Photograph}: Samuel Gibbs/The Guardian

The brand new M2 and M2 Professional chips supply respectable efficiency features on the earlier M1 and M1 Professional chips, with a ten% to twenty% enchancment in CPU pace and as much as 25% quicker graphics. That places them on the high of the pile alongside a few of Intel and AMD’s newest high chips, however at a lot decrease energy consumption, and an enormous leap over earlier Intel-powered Macs.

With that degree of efficiency, the Mac mini has turn out to be not only a small Apple pc however one among its extra highly effective and adaptable choices. The M2 model might be greater than sufficient for many common computing duties, with the dearer M2 Professional choice and as much as 32GB of RAM out there for individuals who want extra energy. It sits beneath the Mac Studio, which is a beefed up model of the mini for individuals who want much more graphics or computing energy.

The fantastic thing about the Mac mini is that it runs primarily silently. It has a fan which you could really feel gently blowing out the again in case you put your fingers over it, however you possibly can’t hear it underneath regular use. When pushed exhausting whereas gaming or processing massive quantities of knowledge, the fan turns into solely nearly audible while you actively pay attention out for it.

It has a stable number of ports, however they’re all on the again, making them extra awkward to entry for issues resembling plugging in USB flash drives. There’s ethernet, HDMI 2.1, headphones, two USB-A ports and two or 4 Thunderbolt 4/USB 4 ports relying on the model.

You’ll be able to join as much as two displays without delay to the M2 and as much as three to the M2 Professional, which might be greater than sufficient for even essentially the most elaborate desk setups.


The top of the Mac mini showing the Apple logo.
The solid-feeling physique of the Mac mini will get a little bit heat throughout intensive duties, however in any other case stays impressively cool. {Photograph}: Samuel Gibbs/The Guardian

The Mac mini is made from 40% recycled supplies, together with aluminium, uncommon earth parts, tin, gold and plastic. Apple breaks down the pc’s environmental impact in its report. The M2 Professional model consumes lower than 0.5W when asleep, about 3W at idle, round 5W for mild work and as much as 50W when pushed, with a most rated draw of 185W.

The pc is generally repairable. Apple publishes repair manuals for its computer systems and presents trade-in and free recycling schemes, together with for non-Apple merchandise.


The Mac mini begins at £649 ($599/A$999) for an M2 chip with 8GB of RAM and 256GB of storage. Fashions with the M2 Professional begin at £1,399.

For comparability, the MacBook Air M2 begins at £1,249, the 14in MacBook Professional M2 Professional begins at £2,149, the 24in iMac prices £1,399,


The Mac mini has lengthy been Apple’s smallest pc, however a little bit of an outlier subsequent to its different standard shopper desktop, the iMac.

Moderately than an all-in-one, it’s a bring-your-own display and peripherals gadget – a extra acquainted idea on the Home windows PC aspect of the pc divide. However with the shrinking of the iMac line to only the 24in model from 2021, and with the relaunch of Apple’s personal show line, the Mac mini is poised as the brand new desktop Mac for all sizes and styles.

The beginning M2 model has sufficient efficiency for many, whereas the M2 Professional presents extra energy than many will want exterior computing intensive workloads. And all packed right into a tiny, power-sipping and quiet-running field that, relying on which model you purchase, is surprisingly good worth for a Mac. There’s little that may actually compete with the Mac mini exterior a couple of area of interest and costly small form-factor gaming bins or DIY computer systems.

It isn’t excellent as desktop computer systems go since you can’t add extra RAM or storage after buy – although you need to use an exterior drive. A scarcity of ports on the entrance makes plugging in flash drives and different short-term peripherals extra fiddly than it must be, the identical because the iMac. However it’s simple to dwell with, whether or not you might be utilizing Apple’s fancy shows, mice and keyboards or not.

Execs: super-fast M2 or M2 Professional chips, quiet and funky operating, tiny field, good worth for a Mac, loads of ports, adaptable, a number of recycled supplies, can run two or three shows.

Cons: no entrance ports, no SD card slot, RAM or SSD can’t be upgraded after buy, built-in speaker is only for fundamentals.