Home Apple New Mac Mini 2014 Rumor Roundup: Release Date, Design & Specs

New Mac Mini 2014 Rumor Roundup: Release Date, Design & Specs

Apple is long overdue for a new Mac Mini release. This is a collection of everything we know about the Mac Mini 2014 update that consumers want to see after waiting over a year for an update to Apple’s most affordable computer.

The current Mac Mini will be two years old in October, similar to the iPod touch, and consumers are left wondering if Apple plans to update this computer that many use as a stepping stone into the OS X experience. The Mac Mini is $599, which is the cheapest Mac computer by $400. this price and the fact that it works with your existing keyboard, mouse and monitor makes it a tempting choice for the first time Mac owner, but after months and months with no update the small Mac Mini is losing it’s appeal.

There are still many users waiting for a Mac Mini 2014 release to update to the small computer, hopefully with updated specs, performance and features. While there is nothing wrong with the current Mac Mini for many users, it is an older machine that is due for an upgrade, which makes it worth waiting for a new model, if Apple ever gets around to updating it.

We could see a New Mac Mini release date in 2014.
We could see a New Mac Mini release date in 2014.

Every time we share a new MacBook Air release rumor readers ask, “When is the new Mac Mini release?” or “Have you heard any Mac Mini 2014 rumors?” While these rumors are not as common as iPhone 6 rumors, we do hear some details about the new Mac Mini, and this roundup will help potential buyers know when Apple might release a new Mac Mini in 2014.

New Mac Mini Release Date

Unless Apple delivers a surprise new Mac Mini release before June, this will be the longest wait between Mac Mini updates, beating out a 574 day gap that ended in 2009. It’s not the oldest Apple product in need for an update, there’s an Apple TV that is even older, but it’s up there.

We heard a rumor of a new Mac Mini release date in February 2014, but that did not come true. The next possible avenue for a new Mac Mini release date is WWDC 2014 on June 2nd. Apple used this event to announce the new MacBook Air in 2013 and there is speculation that Apple could use it to show off the Mac Mini 2014 update. At this point there are no specific rumors, only expectations for the next Apple event.

A 2014 Apple roadmap from noted analyst Ming-Chi Kuo did not include a Mac Mini 2014 model or an iPod touch 6th generation, but it is not clear if this is telling investors that these items are not in the plans or if Kuo simply did not have enough information.

An Apple 2014 Roadmap shared on MacRumors does not list a Mac Mini.
An Apple 2014 Roadmap shared on MacRumors does not list a Mac Mini.

If Apple does not announce a new Mac Mini release date at WWDC 2014 the next two likely months would be September at an iPhone 6 announcement or October for an iPad announcement. These months are based on analyst information for these products and historical release timing. The WWDC 2014 event is the only event Apple has scheduled at this time. It seems unlikely that Apple would hold an event just for the Mac Mini, but it is always a possibility. It would make sense to update the device ahead of back to school shopping.

If Mac Mini supplies dry up at third-party retailers or orders slip from delivery within 24 hours to weeks, that may be a sign that a new Mac Mini release is near. It is not worth paying attention to if the Mac Mini is in stock in the refurbished section of the Apple Store, as selection here fluctuates with availability of older machines.

Mac Mini 2014 Design

There are some rumors that Apple is planning a redesign to make the Mac Mini smaller than it already is. These are not full of great details, but it is a possibility. The current Mac Mini design is several years old, and there is some speculation that we could see a thinner Mac Mini 2014 update.

The current Mac Mini design.
The current Mac Mini design.

At this point there is no leaked casing and while there is always a cool factor with smaller gadgets, there are many factors to consider. Ars Technica explores the case for a smaller Mac Mini and the case against it. Apple already ditched the optical drive and it could switch to a smaller PCIe SSD to make the device smaller, but there is a big reason to keep the Mac Mini at its current size. The power supply is inside the Mac Mini instead of in a power brick. A smaller Mac Mini might require a power brick instead of a simple cord.

The 2014 Mac Mini design may look more like a Mac Pro.
The 2014 Mac Mini design may look more like a Mac Pro.

In late 2013 Apple introduced the new Mac Pro with a completely new look that is small and impressively dark with a new cooling design and access to many parts for upgrades. It is possible that Apple is planning a new Mac Mini 2014 update that looks more like the Mac Pro.

Mac Mini 2014 Specs & Features

If Apple does offer a Mac Mini 2014 update we could see new specs and several new features on this small and affordable computer. Some potential Mac Mini buyers are hoping for Iris Pro graphics like on the larger iMac, and that seems like a possibility for an upgraded model. At the least Expect Iris graphics on the entry-level Mac Mini.

Mac Mini 2014 specs could offer increased performance.
Mac Mini 2014 specs could offer increased performance.

Here’s a look at the most likely Mac Mini specs and features based on other Apple products;

  • Intel Haswell Processors
  • Iris Graphics, potential for an Iris Pro upgrade
  • 802.11ac WiFi
  • ThunderBolt 2

It’s not clear if there will be support for 4k displays like on the Mac Pro and MacBook Pro Retina.

Apple is reportedly switching to faster RAM for the new MacBook Air, and other Apple products. This may include the new Mac Mini.

As mentioned it is possible that Apple could switch up to a PCIe SSD offering, but that would limit the storage on this entry-level model. Perhaps Apple will stick with the same design and rely on the Fusion Drive to deliver faster performance and more storage, like on the current model.

 

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11 Comments

  1. Pitchy (@Pitchy)

    04/21/2014 at 8:06 am

    With the Intel Next Units out now with both 3rd gen and 4th gen chips in them, the Mac Mini needs to do something awesome at a lower price. When you can have the exact same hardware at the fraction of the cost, the only thing you are paying for is that Apple logo and being locked down in the iTunes ecosystem.

    I just put together a 4th gen i3 Intel Next box with with 8gb of ram and a 240gb mSATA SSD and did it under $500. It’s smaller than a Mac Mini and boots from POST to Windows desktop in under 5 seconds. HDMI out to my TV and it’s a perfect little HTPC which is all I would use a Mac Mini for.

    Reply

  2. RDtoo

    04/24/2014 at 3:38 pm

    Umm, wrong and wrong. A) The Mini is an entry-level OS X box. Few homes have a HTPC. B) That “boots to Windows” is what matters. OS X being not Windows. Many sane users will pay a large premium to simply NOT use Windows. Both the most experienced developers and novice users are on Mac, the former because they have a rational valuation of their own time and the latter because they can’t keep a Windows box running smoothly through no fault of their own.

    Reply

  3. islandsound

    04/25/2014 at 12:23 am

    @RDtoo Nice one!

    Reply

  4. Mohit Chhabra

    04/25/2014 at 8:30 am

    It’s a simple fact. People DON’T pay for the Apple logo. They pay for OS X. After 14 years of Windows, I switched to an iMac in 2011 and I don’t plan to ever switch back. As far as being ‘trapped in the iTunes environment’ goes, I would slightly agree if that’s said about iOS, but on a mac that’s completely false. It’s more capable than my PC ever was.

    But even then, I would expect the price of the Mini to go down to 499$ sometime in the future.

    Reply

    • fordtimelord

      05/24/2014 at 6:42 pm

      Well I built myself a hackintosh to avoid the Apple tax but be able to run the then-current version of Logic (seeing as Apple had decided some years prior in their infinite wisdom to buy Logic and then to immediately discontinue it on the PC. That was sooo nice of them). I have to say OSX is ‘orrible, and that coming from somebody who has many years of experience on Unix boxes. The Unix-like side of it is fine, actually. It’s the other side. OSX is a pain in the backside, that’s all there is to it. I love Windows 7, won’t touch Windows 8 with a bargepole, and resent having to wrestle with OSX and its “idiotproofing” approach to an OS. Where are all the options, the right-click context menus. There’s tons of stuff wrong with it. Like you have to download a third party hack just to maximise a window to the size of the screen. WTF is that all about? There are so many odd things about OSX that are just a pain in the backside. And all you’ll get from Apple fans is “that’s the way it’s done because that’s what makes sense; you must be dumb for expecting it to be done any other way” or some other slavish defence of the indefensible.

      Reply

  5. wacker

    05/14/2014 at 12:35 pm

    I’ve been looking at options to replace my 8 year-old iBook G4, not because any hardware problems – I’ve never had any problems with any of my Macs from ’90 onwards, still have them – but I’m noticing the software is lagging behind again. This is why uprated all my old ones, why I left the excellent eMac behind after only 1 year, it couldn’t do broadband or Skype (and the iBook barely can). All can still do an awful lot as long as no need for www, Skype etc, and can pass as art-work when not used, everyone comments on how beautiful they are, how many say that of the anonymous PC-boxes! After much soul-searching I’ve decided to try a Mini as my cheapest option but with the punch to keep up (I’m now a pensioner and need to watch the outlay). I’ll use my Panasonic plasma as a monitor.

    But…

    Famous last words!

    WHEN is the new one coming? As it’s stupid not to wait for a soon-here new one at near-enough the same price (one hopes).

    Frustrating…

    Nothing wrong with the old design, very robust and would shed heat well, but I’d prefer it up-rated to current standard performance, it’s likely my last computer. I’d go for the top-range i7 with Fusion-drive and buy extra (OWC?) RAM as it’s half the price.

    A question: Anyone tell me how to wire a cable for the monochrome A4 screen monitor? The connector-end to the monitor got broke and it’s not obvious how the wires were connected, I can repair it otherwise. Or is it a standard cable, able to use one that came with the others? Don’t want to blow it up, it was expensive when new.

    Reply

  6. Student

    05/14/2014 at 4:54 pm

    I would have bought one IF IT CAME WITH AN SSD instead of that slow crappy disk. It looks like it is really difficult to change the disk yourself and the warranty is no longer valid if you open the box yourself.

    Reply

    • Alvaro Miranda Aguilera

      05/15/2014 at 8:34 pm

      you can replade the disk, apple have the end user servicing, I did update ram to 16gb, got an iFixit 2hdd kit and went for 256gb ssd for boot, and put a 2nd disk 1tb 7200rpm

      totally worth the time invested, kit came with tools and they have online videos.. did with late 2011.

      Reply

      • Benjamin Burde

        06/14/2014 at 2:19 am

        Sounds interesting…would like to do the same. which hardware (ssd..) did you purchase?

        Reply

  7. gogu

    05/15/2014 at 3:59 am

    I use both windows 8 and osx Mavericks. I am not a hardcore osx fan, there are things that are more convinient than on windows, but there are few annoyances.

    I use 4 monitors. On windows – no problems, taskbars on all, each show which program is open and if I roll-over icon with several instances of one program open, in a second thumbnail pops up and I can choose the window I want. In mac I have one jumping taskbar that hides itself, I sometimes have to guess which of the windows I want to use (no icon, just text), but worst of all, I have no idea how many instances of same program are open on each screen…

    OSX ir very far back in multi-monitor support

    Reply

  8. Gregory

    06/05/2014 at 7:54 am

    The back-to-school crowd has never been an issue with regard to the Mac Mini. I cannot remember it ever being included in any of the student specials. Those are focused on the iMac and the iPad series. People generally get a Mac Mini because they want OS X and something that will work seamlessly with their other iDevices. Some buy it for a home theater setup or, as in my case, because they want a different monitor. Students are more interested in something that is self-contained–a laptop, tablet, or all-in-one computer such as the iMac.

    Reply

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