The big picture: Apple's Mac mini was long overdue for an update as the last refresh came more than four years ago. Apple appears to be focusing on professionals this time around although really, anyone looking for a compact Mac could get some use out of the new Mac mini.

Apple on Tuesday announced the most powerful Mac mini ever created, boasting up to five times the performance of the previous model. The speed bump is largely a product of quad- and six-core chips from Intel's 8th generation family of Core processors.

Alongside Intel UHD graphics, the new Mac mini can be configured with up to 64GB of RAM and as much as 2TB of SSD storage that's four times faster than before. Apple has also baked in its T2 Security Chip which enables on-the-fly data encryption and ensures that software loaded during the boot process hasn't been compromised.

The Mac mini offers four Thunderbolt 3 ports, an HDMI 2.0 port, two USB Type-A ports, an audio jack and a Gigabit Ethernet connection (there's also an option for 10 Gigabit Ethernet for the first time). Its chassis is made from 100 percent recycled aluminum and ships running macOS Mojave, the latest version of Apple's desktop operating system.

Apple's new Mac mini will be available to pre-order from today starting at $799 which gets you an Intel Core i3 processor, 8GB of RAM and a 128GB SSD. A model with a Core i5 chip, 8GB of RAM and a 256GB SSD starts at $1,099 and scales up from there.

Should you opt for the top-of-the-line configuration with a Core i7 chip, 64GB of memory, 2TB of storage and 10 Gigabit Ethernet, be prepared to pay a whopping $4,199.

Like the new MacBook Air, it launches on November 7.