"A great low cost; feature rich; flexible; digital lifestyle center (and PC!)"4.5 starson by atomiccimota
Pros: iLife (best suite of digital lifestyle apps); Bluetooth; WiFi; Superdrive included; Dual boot into XP with Boot Camp
Cons: Front Row interface while a good start has room for improvement
Summary: People do not give Apple enough credit for the included suite of digital lifestyle applications that are included with Macs. The suite of iPhoto; iTunes; iMovie; iDVD; Garage Band and now iWeb provide out of the box functionality that no PC can match. For home use the bundled iLife appplications provide INTEGRATED capabilities that enable you to organize your digital photos, edit home movies; create DVDs to share your photos and movies; publish amazing looking web pages; record music and Podcasts.
Add to the fact that you can now use Boot Camp with a copy of XP (SP2) to dual boot into Windows for applications like Family Tree Maker or other Windows only apps and you have the best of both worlds. Formatting the Windows partition in Fat32 (a step in the boot camp process) allows you to easily mount the XP volume from within OSX and drag and drop files between the two environments.
As a media center many people ding Apple for not including PVR capabilities. How many PVR users are going to give up their Tivo's and cable/satellite leased PVRs for a PC based PVR? PVR is a nice feature to have but why give up a device (Tivo) that works so well with broadcast video? PVR can be added to a Mac using a variety of Elgato EyeTV products.
With the Mini I can now view or work on my photos, home movies, web pages on our HDTV in the living room (in OSX and on XP if needed). The additon of a bluetooth keyboard and mouse makes for an elegant experience. (get a two button bluetooth mouse - I regret getting the single button apple bluetooth mouse)
All of the positives aside - the Front Row inteface which allows you to control the Mac with a simplified remote - could be better integrated with the iLife applications. I was disappointed that I had limited options to view photos in an iPhoto directory on my office iMac. Watching streaming video while amazing in fidelity doesn't work as smoothly as a PVR. Constants starts stops and rewinds can cause streaming video over the Internet to hang. Like all of Apples Applications I expect this to improve over time.