The base model has an 8th-gen Core i3 processor, 8GB of RAM and a 256GB SSD. While those specs are on the low side, we gave the Mac Mini a score of 80 when we reviewed it at its debut. It proved to be a speedy desktop that could handle many different types of workflows, but where it mostly fell short was in graphics performance due to a lack of dedicated GPU.
However, we liked it for its compact design, affordable price (compared to other Mac machines), and its variety of port options. The Mac Mini includes four Thunderbolt 3 ports, a headphone jack, an Ethernet port, an HDMI port and two USB-A ports. That’s much more than you’ll find on any Apple laptop, and the combination of Thunderbolt 3 ports and HDMI port allow you to drive up to three 4K monitors from this tiny computer.
Admittedly, those who work in creative fields or use programs that rely heavily on GPU power will require more power than the Mac Mini can provide. The Mac Mini is also not designed for gaming, so it won’t be the best all-purpose device if gaming is part of your regular routine. But this is a good sale because, not only is this the lowest price we’ve seen on the Mac Mini, but it gives back-to-school shoppers an even more affordable way to upgrade their computer before the new semester starts.
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