10/21/09
9:53 am

MacMost Now 308: 12 Cool Things About the New iMacs

In addition to being a general upgrade to the iMac line, the new iMacs have 12 new and interesting features that you should know about.

Video Transcript (Click to Expand)
Hi, this is Gary with MacMost Now. On today's episode, let's look at 12 cool things about the new iMacs.
So Apple updated their entire iMac line yesterday. And besides the usual things, like faster processor, more memory, larger hard drives, a new enclosure, there's also a whole bunch of new little features that are really cool. Let's go and take a look at them.
So there are two sizes for the new iMac: a 21-and-a-half inch model and a 27-inch model. Now besides having LED backlit displays, the displays themselves are kind of interesting. On the smaller model, the 21-point-five inch, the pixel resolution is exactly 1920 by 1080. That's the exact size of 1080p high-def television.
Now the 27-inch iMac is 2560 pixels wide by 1440 pixels high. This is almost the same resolution as a 30-inch monitor, which is the same width but 1600 pixels high. However, a new 27-inch iMac will only set you back seventeen hundred dollars, while a 30-inch monitor, just the monitor, will set you back eighteen hundred dollars.
And what makes that fact even more interesting is that a 27-inch iMac has a video in port. It's a mini display port adapter that you can plug in, like a Macbook or some other device that uses a mini display port and use the 27-inch iMac as a monitor, so it's actually a cheaper version of something close to a 30-inch monitor in addition to having, you know, the whole computer thing.
Now the 27-inch iMacs are also interesting in that you can get them with quad core processors. The i5 and i7 processors are available. The i5 is the high-end version and the i7 is a built to order version. So you can have quad core powerful desktop processors in an iMac.
An overlooked fact yesterday is that fact that all the iMacs now come with an SD card slot. So that means now all the MacBook Pros and all the iMacs have an SD card slot.
The new iMacs also have Firewire 800, which is twice the speed, of course, as Firewire 400, and it's backwards compatible, so with an adapter, you can use any old Firewire 400 device as well as new Firewire 800 devices. This means now that all of the Macs are Firewire and use Firewire 800.
Not only do you get more memory in the new iMacs as default, but you can upgrade, uh, to a lot more. You can do 8 gigabytes in the smaller iMac and in the 27-inch model, you can go all the way up to 16 gigabytes.
An interesting thing about the 27-inch model is that it's wall mountable. You get a wall mount kit, you can actually buy it at the Apple store, and you can mount the thing up on a wall. You can actually do the same thing with the old 24-inch model iMac.
So unlike the new MacBooks, you still get two audio ports on the back. You get a line out and a line in. But, like the MacBooks, you can still use the iPhone style headset. These are the earbuds that have the microphone on them. Apparently, you can plug them in, I'm guessing, into the microphone in, and get audio out and audio in on the one port.
Also on the audio side of things, there are new speakers on the new iMacs. They're these 17-watt high-efficiency output speakers which supposedly are a lot better than the speakers in any previous version of an iMac.
Now it used to be with LCD displays, you could view them great from the front but as soon as you started to move to the side, you couldn't see them anymore. But the LCD displays are getting better and better. These new iMacs claim to have a 178 degree viewing angle, which means you can view them looking almost completely from the side.
And finally, we've got the fact that that these new iMacs come default with a wireless keyboard and, of course, the new wireless Magic Mouse. That means there's almost no wires at all connected to your iMac. A basic set-up will just have the power cable running out the back and into the wall, and that's it. You've got wireless internet connectivity, you've got a wireless keyboard, you've got a wireless mouse. This is the first time that these options have been offered as the default options, not as upgrades.
So there's a quick look at what you get with the new iMacs that are now selling online and in the Apple stores. 'Til next time, this is Gary Rosenzweig for MacMost Now.

Comments: 3 Responses to “MacMost Now 308: 12 Cool Things About the New iMacs”

    zeebe
    10/21/09 @ 10:15 am

    Great show of the cool features, one correction, the last update of the iMacs before this one had FW 800 as standard, I know as I have a lab in a school with 5 iMacs that have FW 800 only.

    Anthony
    10/21/09 @ 3:38 pm

    Wish they added eSATA. :(

    Which is more powerful i5 or i7?

      10/21/09 @ 3:58 pm

      i7 is 2 better than i5. No. Actually, the difference is i7 uses “Hyper-Threading” which is basically simulating 8 cores on a 4-core processor. Not as good as 8 real cores, but it will give a speed boost in some types of calculations.

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