M2 vs M2 Pro Mac mini… FIGHT!
Last week, Apple introduced a brand new Mac Mini it doesnt look any different to this one, which is the M1 version, but inside this new Mac Mini is something quite special. That is the M2 Chip which comes in two flavors, the regular M2 and the M2 Pro, and that means weve now got a Mac Mini thats, capable of having a 19 core GPU 32 gigabytes of unified memory and eight terabytes of internal storage thats. At the top end with the M2 pro version, obviously, but we now have this new entry level M2 Mac Mini, which costs just 649 pounds in the UK, which is actually less than the previous generation. So at one end we have the most affordable way to get into the Mac OS ecosystem and then right. At the other end, we have this super beastly version of the Mac Mini that we didnt have before and in todays video Im going to reveal which one you should buy. Firstly, whos the Mac Mini 4, because if you look at it its not the most exciting Mac on the planet, its not the iMac, its, not the MacBook Pro its, not the MacBook Air, its just this little square thing with an Apple logo on the top of It who would buy it as it turns out a lot of people – and I am a massive fan of the Mac Mini for one very simple reason: its the most affordable way, as I mentioned earlier, to get into the Mac OS ecosystem and this time around.
With the M2 version, its even more affordable and for lots of people, the Mac Mini, is one of the best ways to get a really powerful Mac onto your desktop. This is my M1 version, which I built this business with. I edited about 80 4K videos for this channel on this computer, so put simply if the Mac Studio is too expensive for you. If the iMac doesnt float your boat and if you dont need any portability, you need to get a Mac Mini and now that we have two to choose from lets, get into five things you need to think about when choosing between the M2 and the M2 Pro Mac Mini well start with pricing, as always, and in the UK, the base spec M2 Mac Mini costs, 649 pounds which is 50 Quid cheaper than the previous generation. So immediately, if you want the cheapest Mac, you can buy directly from Apple brand, new and youre, going to use it for admin, duties, General kind of office stuff or perhaps youre going to give it to your kid. Then the base spec M2 Mac Mini theres. No competition as a point of comparison Ive been using the base spec M2 MacBook Air as the main laptop behind the scenes for this business. Apart from production, work which Ill come on to later, but for everything else, writing email, General admin, normal computery, stuff, it just cant be beaten and the base spec M2 Mac Mini is basically that laptop in desktop form.
Obviously, you can spend more on this M2 Mac Mini. So if you spec it up with 24 gigabytes of unified memory, a two terabyte SSD, it comes to 1949 pounds. The only thing to bear in mind with that is that it takes you into the bay model. Mac Studio, spec territory, you need to apply a bit of Common Sense there, because, if youre spending, nearly two grand on a regular M2 Mac Mini and then youre looking at the Mac Studio and thinking, does that make more sense, then that computer might be for you Moving on to the M2 Pro Mac Mini, that starts at 1 ‘9 pounds in the UK. Now you can spec up the M2 Pro Mac Mini quite far as well. So if you add everything, so if you add the 32 gigabytes of unified memory and the eight terabytes of SSD storage, it comes to 4499 pounds which again takes you well into Sirius, Mac, Studio territory and again just apply some common sense. If you get that far, if we look at the CPU and GPU cores, firstly, the standard M2 Mac Mini comes with eight CPU cores. You cant change that and thats fine for most people. You wont notice barely any difference going from 8 core to 10 cores of GPU, unless you know exactly exactly what youre doing with those two cores, which again is a very defined group of people and the M2 Pro Mac Mini comes with those 10 cores.
Is that worth 750 quid, which is the upgrade between the two? No, you see its the GPU where things get really interesting. The standard M2 Mac Mini comes with a 10 core GPU, which is quite an upgrade from the seven or eight core version of the M1 chip, but the M2 Pro Mac Mini has a 16 core GPU, so straight away. If you do any kind of video work, whether its video editing 3D, rendering lots of Photoshop stuff, and if that work is tied to income, I would get the M2 Pro Mac Mini if youre a hobbyist with that sort of thing. The standard M2, with its 10 core GPU, is actually far more capable than you might think right onto unified memory and its always been the case that adding as much memory to your new Mac as possible is a sensible purchasing decision. And that is definitely still the case, but in the world of Apple silicon the playing field has been leveled somewhat again a case in point: Ive been using eight gigabyte Max in this business for the last two years, with zero issues, Im not using them for video Editing or audio editing, although I have done that in the past in a pinch and they work fine, but theyre used for everything else. So the writing admin email, all the normal stuff that goes into building and running a business. Those eight gig, M1 machines never falter. So again, if your budget will not stretch any further than the M2 Mac Mini with eight gigabytes of unified memory, just buy it.
If you have got some budget spare Apple charges, 200 pounds per memory upgrade so if youre going from 8 to 16, its 200 pounds. If youre going from 8 to 24, its 400 pounds and so on, just remember that you cant upgrade that memory in the future. So what you pick now is what youre stuck with. So, where is the standard M2 Mac Mini tops out at 24 gigabytes of unified memory? The M2 pro version goes up to 32 gigabytes and its also worth noting that the base model M2 Pro Mac Mini, starts at 16 gigabytes. If you know you need 24 gigabytes or 32 gigabytes, you know you need that much memory. So if youre in that crowd, that choice is up to you and you know far better than me why you need that extra memory, but if youre not sure it just comes back to your budget and again, if you cant afford any more, then the base spec M2, Mac Mini with the 8 gigabytes of unified memory just by it. If your budget can stretch a bit further, get yourself that upgrade to the 16 gigabyte standard M2 or if your budget is even bigger than that, go for the standard M2 Pro, because that has 16 gigabytes as standard and some other stuff which brings me on to Storage, the regular M2 Mac Mini can go from 256 to 2 terabytes of storage for an extra 800 pounds, whereas the M2 Pro Mac Mini can go from that 512 gigabyte starting point to 8 terabytes for 2000 400 pounds theres, some very big numbers there, particularly the Pricing and again, this is where you need to apply some common sense, because apple storage is very expensive and, unlike the unified memory, its the one area of this computer that you can upgrade in the future and the great thing with the Mac Mini is that it Sits on a desk, you dont have to worry about carting around storage devices.
You can just plug them in hide them behind it done so. My advice with internal storage on M2 Mac minis, as always, is only spend more money on it. If you think you need to, and if you have budget left over right at the end, there are some smaller differences between the M2 and the M2 Pro Mac Mini that you need to be aware of both the M2 and the M2 Pro Mac Mini. Have two USB a ports, one HDMI port and a gigabit Ethernet, but the big difference is the Thunderbolt 4 ports which is best to think of as USB C ports because thats, how most of us use them on the M2 version of the Mac Mini you get Two Thunderbolt 4 ports and on the M2 pro version you get four now I cant tell you how many ports is right for you, but if youre the sort of person who wants as many ports on the back of your Mac Mini as possible, the M2 Pro Mac Mini is the one to go for its a similar story when it comes to displays so the standard M2 Mac Mini can drive two external displays, whereas the M2 Pro Mac Mini can drive three. So, in summary, you need to look for a balanced spec that doesnt take you into Mac Studio territory. You need to prioritize any additional budget that you have on unified memory rather than internal storage. Remember that, if you know you need more unified memory, such as 24 gigabytes or 32 gigabytes, you know you need more unified memory and, although both the M2 Mac Mini and the M2 Pro Mac Mini, can play back and edit 4K and even 8K video.