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Earlier, we revealed the a 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display was likely to drop alongside the iPad Mini later this month, and to add to those two significant releases, it looks as though the Mac mini will be getting a refresh in the image of the WWDC enhancements offered to the MacBook Air and Pro ranges.

At this year’s Worldwide Developer Conference, the MacBook Pro with Retina display commanded the lion’s share of the plaudits, but with Apple only offering a 15-inch version, those looking for a more compact mobile experience were left to consider other options. In-keeping with the theme of compact computing, it appears the Mac mini will also receive a respectable upgrade, including an Ivy Bridge processor and USB 3.0.

The improvements made to the MacBook Air and MacBook Pro back in June were evolutionary as opposed to revolutionary, and that looks to be the case here. Having said that, I’ve been using an Ivy Bridge-powered MacBook Air for around three months, and there’s a noticeable bump in performance over the old Sandy Bridge effort – one which prospective Mac mini buyers will certainly welcome.

Not only will the Mac mini brand be brought up to speed with the majority of the rest of the roster, but it looks like there’ll be two new standard configurations for consumers, bringing a total of three different specifications of Mac mini to the table. There will be two as you were Mac minis offering the same feature set as currently on offer (one high-end and one slightly more entry-level, we presume), whilst the third will likely run OS X Server.

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The new Mac minis will likely be immediately available after being announced, so if you’re in the market for a new Mac and growing tired of waiting for the iMac to get a significant improvement, the new Mac mini might be just the ticket. At present, the compact desktop runs old processors, and doesn’t include USB 3.0 to boot, so although the focus of the announcement day will be the iPad Mini, Mac users will have plenty of other bits and pieces to keep an eye out for.

Apple’s special event is expected to be held on Tuesday, October 23rd.

(via 9to5Mac)

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