Tech Friday: Pondering the new Mac Mini vs iMac setup again

Posted By on June 4, 2021

The Joanna Sterns review in the WSJ about the new Apple iMac highlighted a few plus and minus points last month … and started me thinking about a desktop computer replacement. It is difficult to imagine spending $2000 again to replace my aging late 2012 iMac 27” model, especially since I run a dual monitor (plus Parallels Windows 10 Virtual set-up) on a second matching Apple monitor, but eventually I will be tempted.


Having had an Mac Mini back in the 2000s until the iMac … after Apple’s switch to Intel chips …  I liked the small size and less heat (coming from G4 and G3 Macs) and being able to replace individual components. So a new smaller M1 or eventual M2 Apple Mini would not be something that I would quickly discount when it is time to upgrade.


The Mac mini was among the first Macs to get the M1 processor, so it makes sense that the 2021 model would be the first to get the follow-up. Prosser reports that the new chip will be an “X” variant of the M1, which “will greatly outpace the performance and capabilities of the current M1 chips,” according to a report by Mark Gurman in Bloomberg.

Specifically, the new chip may feature “eight high-performance cores and two energy-efficient cores for a total of 10.” The current M1 chip in the Mac mini features four high-performance cores and four energy-efficient cores. With such power, this new machine will likely replace the 3.0GHz 6-core 8th-generation Intel Core i5 model.

The Mac mini’s GPU is almost certain to be integrated into the system on a chip, but it will reportedly be much more powerful than the current Mac mini’s 8-core GPU. Gurman reports that the new chip will come “in either 16 or 32 graphics core variations.”

MORE at MacWorld


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