Conclusion: With the latest version of its all-in-one desktop, Apple left everything that was great about the 27-inch iMac alone (namely its best-in-class screen and beautiful design), while making some serious improvements to it internal components.
Is the new iMac just another processor bump, or is it a serious upgrade?
9 May 2011
Summary: Every year I review the iMac, and every year my conclusion is the same: the iMac remains the single best all-in-one computer available. The 27-inch model is virtually the only machine of its class on the market, and it's hard to argue with its $1,699 entry price given that a similar IPS display...
Conclusion: Casual Mac users will love the new iMac (Intel Core Duo), but professional users or anyone who uses graphics apps like Adobe Photoshop and video-editing software (such as Final Cut Pro) should wait until those tools are updated.
Pros: Intel Core Duo dual-core processor. Mini-DVI port for true dual-monitor usage. Front Row software is now peppier.
Cons: Many applications that are not optimized for Intel will run slower. Classic OS 9 environment no longer available.
Conclusion: Apple moves closer to the sweet spot with the iMac (Nvidia GeForce 9400M). This new all-in-one gives you the screen real estate you crave, along with strong multimedia capabilities, and the covetable Apple design, all for a reasonable price.
Pros: Both Windows- and Mac-compatible. Fully HD-capable screen. Recyclable aluminum-and-glass construction. EPEAT Gold certified and Energy Star 5.0 pre-certified. Minimal cables. 4GB of DDR3 RAM is standard. No crapware. iLife '09 included. Same price as old 20-inch model.
Cons: No media card slots. Mighty Mouse is slippery and annoying. Vista 64-bit installation complicated. No Blu-ray option. No eSATA. No numeric keypad and cursor control on standard keyboard. Only 90-days phone tech support.
Conclusion: Overall the 17″ iMac is a welcome improvement from the 15″ predecessor. The upgrades and features of the 17″ model are substantial enough to gain the attention of those looking for a serious long-term system.
Summary: No one wants to design desktop towers any more, but they've still failed to match Apple's aesthetic for all-in-ones. Rivals like the EeeTouch, Acer Aspire Z5610 , Sony Vaio L or Lenovo's IdeaCentre are technically worthy, but design-wise they just don't compare.
Summary: Apple shows that the melding of hardware and software makes for a very compelling computer. Sleek and cool-running, the latest Apple iMac is arguably the best one-stop PC you'll find, at home running Windows or its native Mac OS X.
Pros: Great design, quiet
Cons: Won't run the latest games at highest settings thanks to its graphics card