Apple’s 2022 Mac Mini Refresh: Everything We Know

Apple is working on an updated version of the high-end Mac mini, with the new machine set to replace the Intel version of the ‌Mac mini‌ that Apple is still selling today. Apple replaced the entry-level ‌Mac mini‌ with an M1 version in 2020, and now the company is ready to complete the Apple silicon transition for the entire lineup.

m1 mac mini screen
This guide includes everything that we know about the ‌Mac mini‌ refresh, which could be happening in a matter of weeks.

Design

Apple is going to overhaul the design of the ‌Mac mini‌, but we don’t yet know just what it will look like.

m1 mac mini vignette

m1 mac mini vignette

The current ‌M1‌ ‌Mac mini‌


Leaker Jon Prosser, who has somewhat of a mixed track record when it comes to predicting Apple’s plans, provided details on what he believes the new ‌Mac mini‌ will look like. He says the new ‌Mac mini‌ will have a plexiglass-like top that will sit over the aluminum enclosure, and that the overall size could be smaller than the current ‌Mac mini‌.

mac mini back2

mac mini back2
Prosser provided renders, but it’s worth noting that this design is not accurate when it comes to port layout because there would not be so little space between USB-C ports.

Colors

The ‌Mac mini‌ could feature a two-tone design instead of one single color, and it could potentially come in colors other than space gray or silver, much like the 24-inch iMac. Color options have not yet been confirmed, so Apple could just stick to the standard ‌Mac mini‌ shades.

Ports

Apple’s new ‌Mac mini‌ is said to be equipped with four Thunderbolt ports, two USB-A ports, an Ethernet port, and an HDMI port, along with the same magnetic charging cable used for the 24-inch ‌iMac‌.

Apple Silicon Chips

The updated ‌Mac mini‌ will adopt the M1 Pro and M1 Max chips that were first introduced in the 2021 MacBook Pro models, effectively replacing all Intel versions of the ‌Mac mini‌.

m1 pro vs max feature

m1 pro vs max feature
The low-end ‌Mac mini‌ will continue to use the ‌M1‌ chip for the time being, while higher-end more expensive models will be available with the ‌M1 Max‌ and ‌M1 Pro‌. Both chips feature a 10-core CPU with eight high power cores and two high-efficiency cores, though there is also an 8-core version used in the 14-inch MacBook Pro.

As for GPU performance, the ‌M1 Pro‌ chip features a 16-core GPU (14-cores in the base model 14-inch MacBook Pro), while the ‌M1 Max‌ features a 32-core GPU with a lower tier 24-core option also available as an upgrade. These same chip options may come to the ‌Mac mini‌.

The ‌M1 Pro‌ chip supports up to 32GB RAM and the ‌M1 Max‌ supports up to 64GB, so the new ‌Mac mini‌ will continue to offer support for up to 64GB RAM. The ‌M1‌ version of the ‌Mac mini‌ is limited to 16GB RAM.

Launch Date

We know a new ‌Mac mini‌ is coming at some point in 2022, and it’s looking like we could see it as soon as March. Apple is planning to hold an event on Tuesday, March 8, which is when we could see the new ‌Mac mini‌ launch.

Bloomberg‘s Mark Gurman has repeatedly said that at least one new Mac with an Apple silicon chip is coming at the spring event, and other Macs are not expected to be refreshed until later in the year. It’s possible the updated Mac could be an ‌iMac‌, but display analyst Ross Young recently said an new ‌iMac‌ wouldn’t be ready to launch until summer.

With the ‌iMac‌ held until summer and planned Mac Pro and MacBook Air refreshes coming in the fall, the ‌Mac mini‌ seems to be the likely candidate for an early 2022 release.

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