Ventiken Technologies - Mac mini

Mac mini

Caution: This article may need a resolution of 1024x768 or higher, if the pictures table gets cut off.

UPDATE: There has been reported problems with the Mac mini, when used via the DVI port. Users have green line specks that go across the screen, whenever there is movement. It is easier to be seen in darker areas of the screen. I have tried my new 17" LCD with DVI and VGA, and tried the DVI connection, and I also have the problem. Another issue with the Mac mini, is dark VGA output, which I have noticed. The VGA also suffers from the colors being washed out, as a result of the darker picture. Which, because I am using my LCD via the VGA port, I can get a picture without static, but the picture could be better, but is not. Now, I do not know whos fault this is, Apple, or ATI, but whoever is at fault, better come up with a solution, fast! I personally, hope that I do not have to pay more cash, to get a replacement logic board, or a fix, because I already payed $599 for my mini, and it came with this problem, along with alot of others.

I have recently just got a brand new Mac mini. I purchased it the day it came out, and got the $599 model.

The Mac mini comes in 2 models, a $499 and a $599 model. The difference between the two? The $499 model sports a 1.25GHz PowerPC G4 processor, and a 40GB hard drive. The $599 model uses a 1.42GHz PowerPC processor, and a 80GB hard drive. At first glance at the machine, it looks like it probably won't do much. We were wrong. On our first test, it did run UT 2004 no problem (see picture). The only thing about it playing that game, was the 256MB RAM it comes with, which since is too little, kept having it load from the hard drive while playing the game (virtual memory), which kept causing it to lag a little. But, it can have up to 1GB RAM (1 slot only). Interestingly, both models have a ATI Radeon 9200 with 32MB VRAM, but even with that, it can play UT 2004.

There is one thing that it is missing that I was surprised it even lacked. It has no audio-in port. Now, if you do music and stuff, thats no problem, cause you know integrated audio-in has electrical noise.

The mini does not come with a keyboard, mouse, or monitor either. You need to supply that stuff. However, since it has only a DVI output for a monitor, it has a DVI to VGA adapter free, with it.

On the back, it has the following ports also: Power, 10/100MB Ethernet, 56K Modem, Monitor, 2X USB 2.0 High Speed, 400MB FireWire, and Audio out.

Another thing I will tell you about, is the noise level of the mini. Overall, the mini is very quite. It's so quite, sometimes I need to see if it's on by looking at the power light. However, it's not always quite. When playing Unreal Tournament 2004, it's cooling fan kicked in a higher speed, and when it did, you could really hear it. What I found interesting, is that when playing a DVD, it's quite. I always thought that playing a DVD took alot of power, and needed some cooling, but to this mini, playing a DVD movie is a walk in the park.

It's power supply is external, like a laptop. It's power supply is on the outside of the mini, and sits in the back, and it looks alot like a laptop's power supply.

Since it includes a DVI-to-VGA adapter, it mainly only has DVI output. It's VGA output while using the adapter, seems a little darker than most PC VGA outputs. My PC, which uses a GeForce 4, seems to be "brighter". Mac OS X looks and runs good, as long as your at 1280x960 or lower screen resolution. However, I played Doom II using DooM Legacy, at it's highest resolution possible on it's VGA output, and it ran great. Though, it only has 32MB VRAM, you cant expect too much from it. But I find it surprising that it can play Unreal Tournament very well, even with 32MB of VRAM.

It's modem worked very well, for me. I tested it's modem using Netzero, and it got a good connection. PC users that hate the dialing and connecting sound of their modems, will hate the mini's modem. Like all modern macs, the modem's sounds play through your speakers, not it's own. So, if your wearing headphones, I would mute the sound for the time while it's dialing, otherwise you will hear it connecting.

See the pictures below to see the mini.

Mac mini With CD

Back Connections

Mac mini Playing Unreal Tournament 2004

Mac mini Box Next To Keyboard Box

Mac mini On Desk

Mac mini Close Up