One of the FAQs regarding the current Intel Mac Minis is "will it play HD video", or "will it play 1080p video". The answers have been all over the place, from emphatic "yes" and "no" answers to hazy "maybes" with few real details.
It's important to have a good answer to this question because many, many people are interested in the Mac Mini as a HTPC. There is little value, however, in spending time and money on a platform if it isn't powerful enough to run ALL high definition content that one might encounter.
In this post I will discuss how to measure high-definition playback in a useful way, what problems people are currently having with high definition playback, and why the current Mac Mini is probably fast enough to handle all currently available high definition content.