Mac mini Index

The Mac mini was both the smallest Mac ever sold and the least expensive. Introduced in January 2005, the Mac mini has only been through one design change. The original design was 6.5″ square and 2.0″ tall; the later design was 7.7″ square and 1.4″ tall.

The Mac mini doesn’t include a keyboard or mouse. Instead, you can plug in your favorite USB keyboard and mouse – or buy one from Apple or any computer retailer. Mac OS X 10.4 (Tiger) includes support for remapping the Windows alt and option keys to option and cmd.

Mac mini, original design

Original Design, PowerPC

back of Mac mini

Mac mini G4 port configuration

  • Mac mini G4, Early 2005: 1.25 GHz and 1.42 GHz, 256 MB RAM, Combo drive standard, 32 MB video RAM.
  • Mac mini G4 (Rev. B): same speeds, 512 MB RAM standard, Bluetooth 2.0 and AirPort Extreme standard on 1.42 GHz model, 4x SuperDrive configuration added.

Original Design, Intel Core

back of 2006-07 Mac mini

Back of 2006-07 Mac mini.

  • Mac mini, Late 2005: 1.33 GHz and 1.5 GHz, 512 MB RAM (2 GB max), 64 MB video RAM. Top-end model now includes 8x SuperDrive. 5400 rpm drives now standard.
  • Mac mini, Core Solo (Early 2006): 1.5 GHz Core Solo, 512 MB RAM (2 GB max), 64 MB video RAM (shared with system RAM). 4 USB 2.0 ports. 5400 rpm drive standard.
  • Mac mini, Core Duo (Early 2006): 1.66 GHz Core Duo, 512 MB RAM (2 GB max), 64 MB video RAM (shared with system RAM). 4 USB 2.0 ports. Dual-layer SuperDrive. 5400 rpm drive standard.
  • Mac mini, Core Duo (Late 2006): 1.66 and 1.83 GHz, 512 MB RAM (2 GB max), 64 MB video RAM (shared with system RAM). 4 USB 2.0 ports. Top-end model includes dual-layer SuperDrive. 5400 rpm drives standard.
  • Mac mini, Core Duo, (Mid 2007): 1.83 and 2.0 GHz Core 2 Duo, 1 GB RAM (3 GB max), 64 MB video RAM (shared with system RAM). 4 USB 2.0 ports. Top-end model includes dual-layer SuperDrive. 5400 rpm drives standard.
Back of 2009 Mac mini

Back of 2009 Mac mini.

  • Mac mini (Early 2009): 2.0 GHz, 1 GB/2 GB RAM (8 GB max), Nvidia GeForce 9400M graphics, 5 USB 2.0 ports, FireWire 800 (but not 400), SuperDrive standard, Mini-DVI and Mini DisplayPort, dual display support.
  • Mac mini (Late 2009): 2.26 or 2.53 GHz, 2 GB RAM (8 GB max), Nvidia GeForce 9400M graphics, 5 USB 2.0 ports, FireWire 800, SuperDrive standard, Mini-DVI and Mini DisplayPort, dual display support.

Mac mini, New Design

There is no built-in optical drive with the 2011 and later models.

Mac mini

back of 2010 Mac mini

back of 2010 Mac mini

  • Mac mini (Mid 2010): New unibody design. 2.4 or 2.66 GHz, 2/4 GB RAM (8 GB max), Nvidia GeForce 320M graphics, 4 USB 2.0 ports, FireWire 800, SuperDrive standard, Mini-DVI and Mini DisplayPort, dual display support.
Back of 2011 Mac mini

Back of 2011 Mac mini.

  • Mac mini (Mid 2011): 2.3 or 2.5 GHz dual-core Intel Core i5, 2/4 GB RAM (8 GB max), integrated Intel HD 3000 Graphics or AMD Radeon HD 6630M graphics, 4 USB 2.0 ports, FireWire 800, Thunderbolt and Mini-DVI, dual display support.
  • Mac mini Server (Mid 2011): 2.0 GHz quad-core Intel Core i7, dual 7200 rpm 500 GB drives standard with SSD options, 4 GB RAM (8 GB max), integrated Intel HD 3000 Graphics, 4 USB 2.0 ports, FireWire 800, Thunderbolt and Mini-DVI, dual display support.
  • Mac mini (Late 2012): 2.5 GHz dual-core i5, 2.3 or 2.6 GHz quad-core i7; 4 GB RAM (16 GB max); 500 GB or 1 TB hard drive, 256 GB SSD, or 1 TB Fusion Drive; 4 USB 3.0 ports, FireWire 800, Thunderbolt, and HDMI.
  • Mac mini Server (Late 2012): 2.3 or 2.6 GHz Core i7; 4 GB RAM (16 GB max); 2 1 TB hard drives or 2 256 GB SSDs; 4 USB 3.0 ports, FireWire 800, Thunderbolt, and HDMI.
  • Mac mini (Late 2014): 1.4, 2.6, or 2.8 GHz dual-core i5, 3.0 GHz dual-core i7; 4 or 8 GB RAM standard, 16 GB maximum only at time of order; 500 GB or 1 TB hard drive, 256 GB/512 GB/1 TB SSD, or 1 TB Fusion Drive; 4 USB 3.0 ports, Thunderbolt, and HDMI.

Memory on the G4 mini can be expanded to 1 GB (there’s only one memory slot, so if you upgrade, you have to remove what’s installed), and Apple doesn’t recommend that users upgrade RAM (although it won’t void your warranty). The early Intel-based mini supports 2 GB of RAM, the 2007 3 GB, and the 2009 models 8 GB.

The 2014 model has its system memory soldered in place and cannot be upgraded after the original purchase.

Any laptop drive should work inside the Mac mini, and capacities have reached the 160 GB level. Higher speed 7200 rpm drives can make the mini an even perkier machine.

With USB 2.0 and FireWire, it’s easy to add all sorts of peripherals.