Apple Mac mini, rev. B wish list

miniLong before the iMac was slated for an overhaul, I began thinking about what I’d like to see in a Mac mini revision. One of the most glaring omissions (in my book) was the lack of a digital out, so I’d like to see a coaxial digital out, now I can already hear the cackles from mini aficionados saying “no way we want toslink”. I hear you, but honestly in my 15 plus years of audio video’dom, I’ve come to the conclusion that the meager coaxial digital out is superior, and hey lets face it coaxial to optical adaptors are cheap enough and small enough to make it a non issue.

While we’re at it, how about a speed increase? Say a 1.67 GHz G4? Why not, if they’ll work in a laptop why not a mini? Or maybe (if they could work out the heat issues) even a 1.6GHz G5. Of course all of these upgrades would be met with Apple’s now standard 512MB memory on board. And since I’m aiming high here, I saved the best two for last, while this next upgrade would likely push a revision up to almost 2006 or later, it would be well worth it. I’d like to see a Blu-ray drive in the next mini; I’m definitely looking forward to that James Bond box set in high definition.

Lastly I think what would really cement the mini’s place in the HTPC world, would be an external MPEG-4 hardware accelerator. It wouldn’t have to be some large obtrusive add-on, I’m thinking something about half to one-quarter the size of the current power adaptor, would be more than enough room to fit in the necessary hardware. Hey one can dream right?

P.S. I want to thank Josh Pigford over at sabotage!media, for the site overhaul. So Fresh n’ So Clean!

B.Greenway




11 Responses to “Apple Mac mini, rev. B wish list”

  1. HTmini » Blog Archive » MacHTPC: Revision B Wish Lists » you heard it here first! Says:

    [...] i Mini

    MacHTPC: Revision B Wish Lists

    The guys over at MacHTPC have put together their wish-list for what should be included [...]

  2. Shelby Says:

    The BluRay drive is certainly a pipe dream for Rev B. More like Rev. K at the current price point. And the MPEG-4 accelerator shouldn’t be the size of the power brick, it should be a thin slab the same form size as the mini, for stackability.

  3. B.Greenway Says:

    Oh I don’t know, no reason you couldn’t have an expensive add on to an otherwise inexpensive product. Consumer (home) Blu-Ray drives are scheduled for an early to mid 2006 release, I wouldn’t expect PC equivalents to be too far behind that.

    Personally I’d rather hide any add-on’s behind my mini than stack them. “what I’d like to see in a Mac mini revision” :)

  4. Gregory Says:

    If Apple is to make a rev. B Mac mini I would want to see the following:

    - Memory increased to 512mb
    - Ensure compatibility with OS X 10.4 core image
    - Digital audio out

  5. Jay Brewer Says:

    The new site design is amazingly clean and simple. Very very nice. How do I get this guy interested in cleaning up my sites?

    On the digital front – I’m not using a MacMini – but would love to know what options there are for digital outs to hook up to a USB 1 or FIREWIRE mac – I know you’ve covered this in some regards – but an in depth look would be great.

  6. flyermoney Says:

    Rev B. Mac mini wish-list:

    • 512 MB RAM
    • Radeon 9800 Mobility w/64 MB VRAM
    • Audio-in (fer chrissakes)
    • Digital Audio-out

  7. Matt Fellers Says:

    Here is my list for 3 things apple should add:

    1. Cablecard
    2. Cablecard
    4. Cablecard

    This would turn the Mac mini (along with a fast external hard drive, and appropriate software) into a HD-capable DVR that would work with my Comcast service, and all other services since Cablecard connectivity is now mandated for most Cable companies. Apple’s probably waiting for Rev 2 of the Cablecard spec that will bring in pay-per-view features that the current spec lacks. (Which is why most Cable providers keep their cablecards hidden away in the back room and won’t tell you that they even support this service).

  8. let Says:

    Well,
    audio in
    512 ram

    And….power button in front!

    Hehehe

  9. Pete Says:

    1) G5 for HDTV playback
    2) Gigabite Ethernet

    Nice but not as important.
    3) 512MB RAM is important but I’ll buy it if it’s standard or an option. DVI is plenty good for me.
    4) Media Card Reader – again it’d be nice, but I can get it external

    Pipe Dream
    5) 7.1 Sound Card – I can get it external, anything less than 7.1 and I would continue to use the external

  10. Dave Says:

    Well, I will join the choir of those wanting digital sound out.

    M-Audio is the only game in town right now for USB DTS pass-through, and both their drivers and their support are a total joke.

    Beyond that, a slightly beefier video card (with supported hardware accelleration for HDTV) and or faster CPU would be spiffy, but to be honest I can get EyeTV to queeze out 1080i in full-screen with just the plain ol’ 1.42 GHz mini already, so apart from playing other HD sources it’s not really a priority.

    Gig Ethernet would also be swell, as it would let me replace all these Firewire drives with a file server in the back closet.

  11. Scott Tillman Says:

    hmm…considering form factor and futures, I’d say:

    1) HDMI output (provides both video and digital audio, plus its a smaller connector than DVI + audio out jack)
    2) audio input
    3) power button on front
    4) IR input, for remote controls
    5) LCD display on front. Like on your DVD payer. For things like track, run time, channel reporting. This way I can play CD’s and other audio data without the TV/Display being on.
    6) Gigabit ethernet

    I think all of these would be relatively inexpensive to add (maybe a total cost of $20-30 per unit), and they would make the mini *the* convergence device for your home theater. I’ll take all of this in a Firewire (800 please!) attached device if I absolutely have to though :)

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