Have you ever wanted to have desktop performance with you, on the go whenever or wherever you are in the world? Well, YouTuber and inventor Scott Yu-Jan has done just that in his latest video by making the ultimate portable Mac Mini.
Scott acknowledges that there isn’t really a demand for his latest project, but it has been on his mind for some time, and to say the result is genius is truly an understatement. Even though I have no need for a Mac Mini, it does make me think that owning something like this could be a very exciting experiment.
• Read more: Mac Mini M1 review (opens in new tab)
Scott is a self-proclaimed laptop hater, and has always had to jerry rig fans to his laptops to be able to keep up with his heavy workload. He explains that laptops he has owned haven’t lasted log without him replacing batteries or other components, before the laptop inevitably stops working and it's back to square one.
Now, this is where the Mac Mini M1 comes in, with its sleek and compact form factor, great performance to price ratio, and Scott not having any problems with overheating. However, this gave him the biggest problem of all: a product that he loves, but can't take everywhere with him.
He wanted to make the Mac Mini portable, and having looked at other examples across the internet and on YouTube he decided these options weren’t practical enough solutions for his workflow – so he decided to make his own.
First Scott had to come up with a design that would work to his style and be practical enough to take with him wherever he goes. He thought of a shrunken Macintosh, building a screen directly on top of the Mac Mini, but this brought up questions about how detachable the Mac Mini would be. Then came a mock-up of a VHS player style, where he could 'slot-in' the Mac, but this would be too bulky.
A small HDMI monitor would have to be used, and then it hit him that the solution was staring him right in the face this whole time: the iPad mini, which he had been using to draw all his designs, was actually the same size as his Mac Mini when laid in landscape. The idea was born!
After some impressive cad work and rendering, the design was ready to be 3D-printed, consisting of just 4 printed prices and some small nuts and bolts. With the addition of a short USB-C cable plugged into his trusty iPad Mini, he now had a fully portable solution with full native retina resolution support thanks to the app Duet. Even better, it also supports full touchscreen capabilities – so he can use the Apple Pencil, rather than a traditional mouse.
But does it work? Well, he’s taken his new invention with him on his travels and even edited a portion of his explainer video on YouTube. For some this might seem like a waste of time, but it's hard to argue with this ingenious invention and his use of hardware and software. Yes, I want one!