Mac mini with M2 and M2 Pro in use
Image courtesy: Apple

Apple has launched new Mac mini computers powered by M2 and the new M2 Pro chips. The company says that the M2 Pro delivers pro-level performance to the Mac mini so you can run high-performance workflows.

Next generation performance

When compared to the previous Mac mini computers, Apple says that M2 and M2 Pro have a faster next-generation CPU and GPU. There is also a more powerful media engine. In addition, both the M2 and M2 Pro Mac minis have an advanced thermal system, so you don’t have to worry about overheating, despite the small form factor.

Mac mini with M2

Mac mini with M2 has an eight-core CPU, which has four high-performance and four high-efficiency cores. It also has a 10-core GPU. In addition, Mac mini with M2 comes with up to 24 GB of unified memory and 100 GB/s of bandwidth. This means that the M2 mac mini model can simultaneously play up to two streams of 8K ProRes 422 video at 30 frames per second (fps) or up to 12 streams of 4K ProRes 422 video at 30 fps.

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M2 performance improvements

Mac mini with M2 and M2 Pro
Image courtesy: Apple

Apple says that Mac mini with M2 gives you up to 2.4 times faster ProRes transcode in Final Cut Pro compared to the previous generation Mac mini with M1. You also get up to 50 percent faster filter and function performance in Adobe Photoshop. Compared to the Mac mini with Intel Core i7, Mac mini with M2 gives you 9.8 times faster complex timeline rendering in Final Cut Pro.

Mac mini with M2 Pro

Mac mini with M2 Pro comes with up to a 12-core CPU with eight high-performance cores and four high-efficiency cores. It also has up to a 19-core GPU and 200 GB/s of memory bandwidth, double that of the M3 model. In addition, Mac mini with M2 Pro supports up to 32 GB of memory. The next-generation Neural Engine is 40 percent faster than M1. This speeds up ML tasks like video analysis and image processing. It means that Mac mini with M2 Pro can simultaneously play up to five streams of 8K ProRes 422 video at 30 fps or up to 23 streams of 4K ProRes 422 video at 30 fps.

M2 Pro performance improvements

Apple says that, compared to Mac mini with M1, the Mac mini with M2 Pro delivers an amazing 4.2 times faster ProRes transcoding in Final Cut Pro. Mac mini with M2 Pro also gives you a big performance boost compared to the 27-inch iMac with Intel Core i7 and Radeon Pro 5500 XT. This includes up to 4.4 times faster object tracking in Final Cut Pro and up to 50 percent faster filter performance in Adobe Photoshop.

Connections

Mac mini with M2 and M2 Pro back
Image courtesy: Apple

The Mac mini with M2 has two Thunderbolt 4 ports and support for up to two displays. The M2 Pro model includes four Thunderbolt 4 ports and support for up to three displays. The M2 Pro model can also support one 8K display, which is a first for the Mac. In addition, both models have two USB-A ports, an HDMI port, a Gigabit Ethernet port with a 10GB option and an upgraded headphone jack to support high-impedance headphones. Finally, both new models have Wi-Fi 6E for up to 2 times faster throughput than before, as well as Bluetooth 5.3.

What we think

The new Mac mini with M2 and M2 Pro computers have ideal specifications for video editing. They also offer great value for money when you consider the levels of performance you get. For example, with the M2 Pro model, you can seamlessly work seamlessly edit in multi-cam with multiple camera formats, including ProRes video. When paired with Apple’s 27-inch 5K Retina Studio Display monitor, the Mac mini with M2 and M2 Pro promise exceptional desktop computer performance.

Pricing and availability

The new Mac mini with M2 and M2 Pro computers are available to order online from Apple or in Apple stores in the US and 26 other countries around the world. Delivery, either direct to customers or in-store, will start on 24 January.

Pricing for Mac mini with M2 starts at $599, and Mac mini with M2 Pro starts at $1,299.


Pete Tomkies is a freelance cinematographer and camera operator from Manchester, UK. He also produces and directs short films as Duck66 Films. Pete's latest short Once Bitten... won 15 awards and was selected for 105 film festivals around the world.