Mr. Machrone writes in the March 8 issue of the magazine that the Mac mini is "sleek" and "certainly quieter than any low-priced minitower system weive tested."
"The Mac mini was a snap to set up," Mr. Domingo wrote. "Five minutes after unpacking the unit, we were typing our user info into the setup wizard, and fifteen minutes later, we were surfing the Internet with the built-in Safari browser. As with all Macs, we did not have to do the usual second setup step: install or set up an antivirus client."
Compared with similarly priced Windows desktops, PC Magazine concluded the Mac mini "comes up a little short " in memory, hard drive space, media card readers and dual-layer/dual-format DVD writers, but "does stand out in bundled software, space efficiency, silent operation, and peace of mind" in not having to fight viruses and spyware.
PC Magis Joel Santo Domingo likes the Mac mini for its small size, style and software bunble, but says it falls short in RAM and hard drive size compared to low-end Windows-based PCs.
In conclusion: "If youire starting from scratch and need to buy a keyboard, monitor, mouse, and so on, the Mac mini isnit for you (youill save in the end by opting for a $799 eMac). But as an additional system for a Mac-centric household, or as a cheap way for Windows-based PC users to introduce a Mac into their lives, the Mac mini succeeds, stylishly."
Mr. Domingo gave the Mac mini a four-point out of five, or "very good" rating.