I've got the same issue. The mini is connected via HDMI cable to an HP monitor. The black screen problem (BSP) so sporatic and short-lived that it's not something I'd return the computer over, but hopefully there is a simple software fix coming that can remedy this.
I really like the mini as my first Mac in over a decade. But already I've had to return one: I initially bought the one with the fusion drive, but there were serious issues with the proper storage space not being available. If you care to, the thread is on the forums here. And now the BSP; still, it's better than my Windows 7 PC.
Happy Thanksgiving to all the mini owners out there.
I was getting random black screens on my old mac mini (late 2006 with 10.6.8) through DVI and a Philips monitor four months ago.
Then I plugged in an older display through apple DVI-VGA adaptor and no more black screens, so I throw my dvi monitor away.
Now I see my display was right
I'm sure this is not a hardware issue but a software bug on OSX widely affecting every mini.
My problem hasn't returned since I switched over to the DVI to mini thunderbolt connector. So my conclusion is it's either an HDMI port problem on the mini or a problem with the DVI to HDMI convertor supplied with the mini.
My Apple store swapped out my DVI to HDMI connector for a DVI to mini thunderbolt. Suggest everyone does the same and take this thread with you.
I have the same problem. Weird thing is we bought 3 minis -- just got them this week -- and so far only one of the 3 has this issue.
It is not the DVI cable or monitor (Acer); worked fine with my last mini that had a direct DVI port on it.
Using Apple provided HDMI connector. Really don't want to use the TB connection as there's only ONE...need that for adding other devices.
For what it's worth, the Apple representative on the help line claims that Apple is on the problem and hoping to release a firmware update soon to resolve the issue.
I was planning on haggling with the genius bar to get a thunderbolt adapter, but I found a daisy chain of adapters(dvi-to-hdmi, plugged into a hdmi-to-mini display) works just fine for the time being. hopefully it really is just an update away.
I have this problem on my mid-2011 mac mini. It is hooked up to a 30" LCD via mini-displayport to full-size displayport cable and a samsung 22" HDTV via hdmi to hdmi. When the samsung is hooked up, the screen blackout, then resync of both monitors happens quite freqently, especially if videos are being played on the computer (does not have to be full screen, just watching youtube increases the frequency of the black outs).
The blackout lasts a few seconds and then both monitors have to resync (they display the input source icon) and things are normal again for a few minutes.
If I unplug the Samsung, then the problem happens much less, but still happens on the 30" LCD occasionally.
I was excited to see the firmware update to fix a similar problem but that was just on the 2012 mini.
How do we get Apple's attention on the mid-2011 mini?
How does one know what is a "better" HDMI cable?
The video drops out intermittently to black, regardless of what screen it is showing.. although it didn't do it once when I restored the unit and it updated itself... hmmm...
I bought a 1.4 version HDMI cable, with ARC, 3-D support and all the goodies... cost me about 12€ for a 2m length.... What constitutes a better one, and how do I know where to find it?
Also, is wifi interference a problem with the cable itself? The Apple TV (version 3) sits next to the TV, and the cable hangs amidst the jungle of cables, router and receiver... but how could you avoid that? Build a lead enclosure for the Apple TV?
My PS3 works with these cables, the Macbook Pro works with these cables too. Is the ATV just too delicate to actually work?
I am surprised because until trying the ATV I was thoroughly convinced Apple really had their act together.
Why doesn't Apple state exactly which cable to use, or better, provide one that will "just work" with the ATV?
This problem caused by Apple really has been frustrating and quite a disappointment in my new home theater experience.
I am also experiencing this issue on a mac mini purchased 1 week ago. I have 2 screens connected via HDMI, one is through a thunderport-hdmi converter. Intermittently one of the screens will go black for a couple of seconds and then return to normal. Both monitors are exhibiting this behavior and I have tried using different cables with no luck. What is the course of action to resolve this?
I too struggled with this problem on my new mac mini I purchased in march 2014 running 2 sony vizio 32" hdtvs. I would work on both screens and one would go blank randomly and then the other sometimes both, and it would take about 5 seconds to come back on, it also caused my usb power to shut off and lose connection to my devices as well as eject my external hard drive. The problem would occur at least 5-6 times per hour thus killing my workflow. It has taken 6 months, a new logic board, too many diagnostic tests, smc resets, you name it I did it and still not working. In the end I fixed the problem myself with a very simple solution. Your hdtv screen are not accepting the information from the computer fast enough causing a log jam of information and causing your hdmi and thunderbolt to fail. I was using Hdmi cables that were rated at 10.2 gbps because they were cheap and I am not editing video. I purchased two 22 gbps cables and problem solved. Not just the screens but all my problems. My hard drives no longer eject, my usb power remains constant and the screens don't go blank. On top of that my computer runs much faster and more stable. The problem has occurred once or twice since I switched the cables and both times it was just a quick 1 sec flicker when i was working on the left screen and quickly went to working on the right. Again this only happened 2 times in the past week and both times were while I was slamming the cpu with audio plugins. I know you said you tried different cables but make sure they were HDMI rated at least 22gbps it makes a huge difference I tried 13-18gbps cables and problem still occurred when i went up to 22gbps all problems solved.
I have been having this problem on my Mac Mini Server 2012 (Macmini 6,2) with Mavericks and Yosemite. After much frustration, I finally fixed it.
I have a Dell U3011 (30") monitor connected to the Mini DisplayPort video out using a Mini DisplayPort to DisplayPort cable. The Dell will only display 2560 x 1600 when I use the DisplayPort connection.
I also connected an older 19" LCD monitor to the HDMI video out using Apple's HDMI to DVI connector adapter.
The system worked fine when I first purchased it. After I upgraded the RAM to 16GB, the Dell began experiencing frequent blackouts. I develop software and edit a lot of text. Usually the Dell would black out while I was scrolling through full screen text files, but it would also crash frequently in Chrome.
Sometimes unplugging the Mini DisplayPort connector from the back of the Mac Mini would reset the big monitor, but more than 60% of the time the Dell would not display anything until I rebooted. Shortly after rebooting, the monitor would black out again.
Since the mini shares the working RAM with the video adapter, and the issue started after a 16GB upgrade, I initially suspected faulty DIMMS. I ran the memory diagnostics for 26 hours (start up holding the "D" key while connected to the internet - this is VERY useful) which turned up nothing.
Looking in the console logs there were many warnings and errors related to video output. At this point I started to suspect the operating system itself as the culprit.
I also have several USB to DVI video signal converters. These don't work well for viewing or editing video, but for web software development & testing, as long as you use the software video proper drivers, they work fine. I used to use them with a 2011 MBP that died a premature video card death, but I digress.
After completely disconnecting the HDMI to DVI connector and re-routing the video through the USB to DVI converter, the random crashes stopped completely.
I suspect there is an issue related to memory addressing (64 bit) and sharing the working RAM between the DisplayPort video 'space' and the HDMI video space.
Once I stopped using both video output ports at the same time, all of my monitors worked flawlessly.
Again, once I installed more than 4GB of RAM, this problem started. Once I stopped using two directly connected monitors, it went away.
I didn't try putting back the original 4GB of RAM because the system is too slow and I don't have any more time to spend on this.
Once current projects are complete, I will take the entire system (giant 30" monitors and all) into the Apple Store and show them. I suspect the original fault to be caused by either defective hardware or defective system software. It was not my monitor.
I hope this helps someone - it is a VERY frustrating problem that took several weeks to resolve.
With a 30" Dell monitor connected to the Mini DisplayPort and a 19" LG Flatron connected to the HDMI port using the included HDMI to DVI adapter, everything worked fine with only 4GB in the system.
The issue began for me when I upgraded from 4GB to 16GB.
The issue was resolved when I stopped using the HDMI port. The Dell monitor does not display a full screen (2560 x 1600) clearly using its native HDMI connection.
In the Mac Mini, the DisplayPort video and HDMI port video share system RAM. I believe that the video system RAM is being corrupted when using (1) a large monitor, (2) more than 4GB of RAM is present in the system and (3) the HDMI port is connected to a second monitor.
I'm going to go out on a limb and say it has "something" to do with 64 bit addressing, because I used this same configuration (Dell -> Display Port; LG -> HDMI) with only 4GB of system RAM and encountered no issues for seven weeks.
Within an hour of the 16GB memory upgrade, the video failures began, originally in Mavericks and subsequently in Yosemite.
I also possess two Gefen USB to DVI adapters. I moved the LG Flatron to one of these adapters and a 19" Microtek monitor to the other adapter. Since doing this, I've occasionally seen some artifacts (scroll bar shadows from closed windows, etc) on the USB connected displays, but no crashes. This leads me to believe that the video RAM is being corrupted in the system, and when two monitors are connected directly, this crashes the video driver.
The Gefen USB to DVI video adapters manage their video memory separately from the built-in adapters.
Apple needs to spend some of those billions on testing QA processes. I also suffered from the early 2011 MBP premature video failure. We took this laptop to the genius bar many times; it always ran hot and froze up. When I installed mavericks it died completely, the motherboard was replaced and subseqently died the same death 3 months after the warranty replacement expired.
Apple offered to replace the motherboard again for $350, and I said "it never worked properly from the beginning, you should fix it for free". They declined and I sold it for salvage. Very disappointing to basically toss out a $2200 laptop.