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You are here: MacNN Forums > Hardware - Troubleshooting and Discussion > Mac Desktops > Next iMacs to get redesigned?

Next iMacs to get redesigned? (Page 3)
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Apr 14, 2007, 05:11 AM
 
Originally Posted by hldan View Post
What are you talking about? What new machines are out?
I think he's referring to the release of the new high-end 8-core MP.
     
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Apr 14, 2007, 07:22 AM
 
Originally Posted by hldan View Post
What are you talking about? What new machines are out?
Mac Pros, with no significant changes besides the 8-core.
     
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Apr 14, 2007, 04:45 PM
 
Originally Posted by Eug View Post
Mac Pros, with no significant changes besides the 8-core.
Oh, it's really not a new machine, just an extra processor option. I'm already disappointed what Apple appears (or not appears) to be doing. The processors in all the Macs (except Mac mini) are plenty fast and up to date (big difference from the G4 days) but all the machines are very outdated in features and I wanted a new iMac 24" but I was hoping for a Blu-Ray option and new graphics card for gaming. Well no new hardware so far this year and Leopard is greatly delayed in favor of something else I could care less about so I don't know if we will see anything new till the end of the year. The iPhone will take center stage till the end of the year and I'll bet WWDC won't show anything big about Macs or Leopard.
     
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Apr 15, 2007, 11:36 AM
 
The one thing that can be considered out of date in Apple's current machines is the GPU in the iMacs and Macbook Pros - the X1600 might have been replaced with the slightly improved X1650 by now. That is minor, however, and the main thing is that the X1600 wasn't the best of the midrange chips of this generation. Replacing it with a 7600 (or 7600GT) would have given better peformance and less heat at the same price. Apple made the call before the 7600 was on the market, and it may have been a bad one. And for the 24"er - what do you want in place of the 7600GT? If you're clamoring for a 7900 or X1900 series chip - sorry, you're kidding yourself. That's a higher level than what Apple has ever put in an iMac - even the 7600/X1600 level is higher than what we used to get. 8600GT isn't out yet, so there isn't a better midrange chip.

There are many limitations in the current Macs - most especially in the iMacs - but they're due to the chipset, and Intel hasn't got a better one available at this point. Santa Rosa launches in early May. Personally I was hoping for the iMac to switch to desktop parts so we could have a Conroe/965P/7600 model sooner - perhaps with newer bigger displays - but it seems Apple is keeping to laptop parts for now.
     
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Apr 15, 2007, 02:42 PM
 
Originally Posted by P View Post
The one thing that can be considered out of date in Apple's current machines is the GPU in the iMacs and Macbook Pros - the X1600 might have been replaced with the slightly improved X1650 by now. That is minor, however, and the main thing is that the X1600 wasn't the best of the midrange chips of this generation. Replacing it with a 7600 (or 7600GT) would have given better peformance and less heat at the same price. Apple made the call before the 7600 was on the market, and it may have been a bad one. And for the 24"er - what do you want in place of the 7600GT? If you're clamoring for a 7900 or X1900 series chip - sorry, you're kidding yourself. That's a higher level than what Apple has ever put in an iMac - even the 7600/X1600 level is higher than what we used to get. 8600GT isn't out yet, so there isn't a better midrange chip.
I'd put the 7600GT into the 24" as the standard config and I'd put the 7300 in the 20" instead of the 1600. They could then offer the 7600 as a BTO option on the 20". I think apart from the 17" model, the 1600 should be removed from the iMac.

Personally I was hoping for the iMac to switch to desktop parts so we could have a Conroe/965P/7600 model sooner - perhaps with newer bigger displays - but it seems Apple is keeping to laptop parts for now.
I would understand the use of the portable chipset for the iMac to keep noise and heat low if they offered a HEM or at least a Yikes-style MP. However, since they aren't offering a HEM or a really low-end MP ( let's say something around $1599), Conroe would make more sense in the iMac since obviously that's what they are trying to sell as the "normal desktop" system.

The iMac is indeed a very nice computer (espcially the 24" model with both CPU and GPU upgrades), but due to the use of mobile components it is more expensive to manufacture, has to use a slower FSB, SO-DIMMs, and lower clocked CPUs. Of course also expansion possibilities are sub-par for a true desktop system (and even if you can upgrade something - like the HDD or optical drive - it's a bitch to actually do).
     
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Apr 15, 2007, 03:00 PM
 
Originally Posted by Simon View Post
I'd put the 7600GT into the 24" as the standard config and I'd put the 7300 in the 20" instead of the 1600. They could then offer the 7600 as a BTO option on the 20". I think apart from the 17" model, the 1600 should be removed from the iMac.
Well, I'd rather have a X1650 than a 7300. An X1600 with X1650 option would be great.

The iMac is indeed a very nice computer (espcially the 24" model with both CPU and GPU upgrades), but due to the use of mobile components it is more expensive to manufacture, has to use a slower FSB, SO-DIMMs, and lower clocked CPUs. Of course also expansion possibilities are sub-par for a true desktop system (and even if you can upgrade something - like the HDD or optical drive - it's a bitch to actually do).
Are you sure SO-DIMMs are required? I think that may have been a design choice on Apple's part, but I'm not sure.
     
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Apr 15, 2007, 04:51 PM
 
Originally Posted by Eug View Post
Are you sure SO-DIMMs are required? I think that may have been a design choice on Apple's part, but I'm not sure.
IIRC SO-DIMMs are not a requirement of the 945 chipset. Be that as it may, the fact is that the iMac uses SO-DIMMs which means its RAM is more expensive. I would like to see the iMac switch to standard DIMMs. Again that decision is likely influenced by design considerations (space, accessibility) and we don't know what Apple's boundary conditions there are.
     
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Apr 16, 2007, 11:03 AM
 
It seems that Apple is in IPhone mode. I don't think we will see new IMac now till around the one year mark (i.e. Paris Expo). I also think this will be the norm from here on out, with once a year updates. I also think that Apple in the next couple of years will drop the IMac all together in favor of the Mac Mini as a comsumer model and the Mac Pro, for high end user.
     
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Apr 16, 2007, 11:11 AM
 
Originally Posted by ESavage View Post
It seems that Apple is in IPhone mode. I don't think we will see new IMac now till around the one year mark (i.e. Paris Expo). I also think this will be the norm from here on out, with once a year updates. I also think that Apple in the next couple of years will drop the IMac all together in favor of the Mac Mini as a comsumer model and the Mac Pro, for high end user.
That would royally suck. However, there is no necessity to wait a year, when most of the updates really are just drop-in type changes.

The May Santa Rosa would be a more significant update, but that could get updated again in 6 months with faster drop-in parts. That's the benefit of common CPU-slot form factors, as well as the common GPU slot designs. For Apple to wait until October for a new iMac would be a major mistake IMO, especially since even by mobile tandards, the current iMac's chipset will be considered old technology by May.

P.S. I do see the logic by some for the claims of Apple dropping the 17" iMac, and selling only the 20" and the 24". That would suit me fine, as I'm most interested in the 20" at the moment. However, I still think that the 17" is adequate for most people, especially with its 1440x900 resolution. I think it would be a shame for Apple to give up this market completely, since it's an extremely popular machine. So, I'm not convinced the 17" is dead yet. OTOH, it is true though that 20" panels have fallen drastically in price in the last 2 years, which could make dropping the 17" feasible.
     
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Apr 16, 2007, 12:03 PM
 
Originally Posted by ESavage View Post
I also think this will be the norm from here on out, with once a year updates.
I don't see how that should become necessary. Intel is faster than that. Roughly 10 months after the 65 nm C2D release (which was a drop-in replacement for the CD) they will launch SR. They just announced today that the 45 nm Penryn which will arrive towards the end of 2007 will be a drop-in replacement for the C2Ds on SR boards. The Penryn update schedule is already fairly aggressive as well. Intel will be offering significant updates more frequently than once a year (although the actual core design will only change roughly every other year). There is no reason Apple should not make use of that drive. Actually, since Apple is now using normal Intel chipsets, in order to stay competitive they will have to keep up with Intel's upgrade pace.
     
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Apr 16, 2007, 02:11 PM
 
Originally Posted by Simon View Post
They just announced today that the 45 nm Penryn which will arrive towards the end of 2007 will be a drop-in replacement for the C2Ds on SR boards. The Penryn update schedule is already fairly aggressive as well. Intel will be offering significant updates more frequently than once a year (although the actual core design will only change roughly every other year).
You forgot an interesting detail from the previous link :
Also on Intel's roadmap is a quad-core Penryn mobile processor to be released during 2008, aimed at high-level gaming and mobile workstations, where users are willing to trade battery life for more performance. The chip is unlikely to find its way into most notebooks for some time.

"You'll see it at the high-end, but I don't see it running so fast into the mainstream because I don't believe there will be enough threaded applications that will justify the tradeoffs," Eden said. Multithreaded applications allow several parts of code to be executed simultaneously and take advantage of the multiple cores used with the latest processors.

The quad-core mobile chip will likely be different in some way from Intel's current desktop and server quad-core chips, which strap together two dual-core dies inside a single chip package, but Eden did not offer details. One possibility is the release of a quad-core chip on a single silicon die -- something that Intel has hinted will come in the future, but has so far not discussed in concrete product terms.
     
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Apr 16, 2007, 02:51 PM
 
Originally Posted by Eug View Post
Well, I'd rather have a X1650 than a 7300. An X1600 with X1650 option would be great.
I'd prefer the 7300 due to less heat production, though I guess that's not really a bottleneck in the imacs noise production (the harddisk is).

Are you sure SO-DIMMs are required? I think that may have been a design choice on Apple's part, but I'm not sure.
I'm pretty sure they are not, but it probably saved some work in redesigning the motherboard / case.
     
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Apr 17, 2007, 04:42 AM
 
Originally Posted by Pierre B. View Post
You forgot an interesting detail from the previous link :
Hehe. It's not so much that I forgot it, but rather that statements like
• aimed at high-level gaming [...] workstations
• where users are willing to trade battery life for more performance
• the chip is unlikely to find its way into most notebooks for some time
• but I don't see it running so fast into the mainstream
imply that it's not going to be in a MBP anytime soon.

Of course, eventually we'll see quad cores CPUs in the MBP no doubt. But I'm betting it won't be the very first one Intel puts out.
     
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Apr 17, 2007, 11:08 AM
 
(I don't think we will see new IMac now till around the one year mark.)

1.With Santa Rosa coming some time in May, Apple will not be able to get something out till after May, and Apple will not let anything come out around the iphone. I feel that 6 weeks before/after the iphone will be all about that product. Now the Paris expo last year was in September so I am guessing that it will around the same time. So this will Apple the buffer between the Iphone and enough time for Apple to boast how they still support those of us who buy their computers.

(I also think this will be the norm from here on out, with once a year updates.)

2. Let face it Apple is much more then a computer Co., and that is great, I own a IPod, I want a Apple TV, and I am sure that Apple has three or four New products in the works. That is a lot of products they have have to keep up to date. Let also remember that the Macintosh platform is not just driven by hardware. It is also driven by the fact that the Mac OS is the best way to use a computer, Apple will always play up that fact. So Hardware not always needed.

(I also think that Apple in the next couple of years will drop the IMac all together in favor of the Mac Mini as a comsumer model and the Mac Pro, for high end user.)

3.1 Consumers are moving more towards laptops these days. This is happening even on the Macintosh platform. It's just what people want.

3.2 The Mac Mini is only a couple of years old but it could very easy fit into the Mid-Range in the years to come. The way I understand the X3000 is light years ahead of the GMA950 when it comes to Integrated Graphics. Also many people welcome that they can add the display, keyboard and mouse they want. Heck I even thought of going that way.

3.3 There will still be those who need power but not the price. The 24 inch Imac is around $2000 Apple could add a Mac Pro version around $1600 with slower speeds, add a third party display, and you got the same computer with something you can upgrade.


In the end on my part this is just a guess, and yes it may be a bad one. It wont be the first or the last, then again it is tuesday the new IMacs just may come out today.
     
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Apr 17, 2007, 11:32 AM
 
Originally Posted by Simon View Post
Hehe. It's not so much that I forgot it,...
I know, that's why the wink was there.

Originally Posted by Simon View Post
...but rather that statements like imply that it's not going to be in a MBP anytime soon.

Of course, eventually we'll see quad cores CPUs in the MBP no doubt. But I'm betting it won't be the very first one Intel puts out.
This is exactly the point, the 24' iMac is like a laptop but not really a laptop if you consider how much volume it has.
     
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Apr 17, 2007, 12:22 PM
 
Ooops, wrong forum. After all this SO-DIMM stuff I thought we were discusing MBPs.

Of course a quad-core Penryn would make for a great iMac! I don't expect Apple to put a Kentsfield in the iMac if they didn't even want Conroe in there, but a quad-core Penryn would be just swell and sounds perfectly reasonable.
     
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Apr 17, 2007, 12:29 PM
 
Originally Posted by ESavage View Post
(I don't think we will see new IMac now till around the one year mark.)

1.With Santa Rosa coming some time in May, Apple will not be able to get something out till after May, and Apple will not let anything come out around the iphone. I feel that 6 weeks before/after the iphone will be all about that product. Now the Paris expo last year was in September so I am guessing that it will around the same time. So this will Apple the buffer between the Iphone and enough time for Apple to boast how they still support those of us who buy their computers.
The first PCs with Santa Rosa are coming out in May of course. It's not as if Intel locked it away in the basement and will only hand it out after it formally launches it. You can be 100% sure Apple has had Santa Rosa prototypes for months.

And the iMac isn't going anywhere any time soon.
     
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Apr 17, 2007, 12:33 PM
 
I'm gonna have to disagree with you again on a couple of things, ESavage.

Originally Posted by ESavage View Post
Apple will not be able to get something out till after May, and Apple will not let anything come out around the iphone. I feel that 6 weeks before/after the iphone will be all about that product.
Well WWDC is going to be right around the iPhone intro and WWDC is going to stage Leopard. So obviously Apple's not too concerned about drawing away attention from the iPhone. That said, SR will arrive May 9. Apple could likely get supplies from Intel already in advance (like they did with CD) so they could start shipping by mid May. That would likely be further away from the iPhone than Leopard. And Leopard is definitely going to be the bigger thing than a SR iMac.

2. Let face it Apple is much more then a computer Co., and that is great, I own a IPod, I want a Apple TV, and I am sure that Apple has three or four New products in the works. That is a lot of products they have have to keep up to date. Let also remember that the Macintosh platform is not just driven by hardware. It is also driven by the fact that the Mac OS is the best way to use a computer, Apple will always play up that fact. So Hardware not always needed.
That might give us all this warm and fuzzy feeling, but it's not the way the market works. Hardware and power is crucial. Apple had Tiger before and yet they switched to Intel. As good as Tiger may be and even if Leopard is even better, you cannot neglect hardware development. Apple cannot have their midrange desktop use technology the PC world will be putting in low-end or middle notebooks. Apple might not switch to SR immediately, but it is no question they will have to switch soon (unless of course they switch to Conroe and 975 chipsets which is not very likely).

(I also think that Apple in the next couple of years will drop the IMac all together in favor of the Mac Mini as a comsumer model and the Mac Pro, for high end user.)
The mini would have to come a very far way for that to happen. Already today the gap between the low-end mini and the high-end MP is considered large by many. Dropping the iMac would make this even worse. Unless the mini becomes something like a Power Mac 7600 I can't see it replace the iMac. And if it would indeed become something like the PM 7600, it would certainly no longer sell at it's low-end $599, IOW Apple would be giving up the < $1k market which is also very unlikely.
     
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Apr 17, 2007, 01:42 PM
 
No way they drop the iMac.
     
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Apr 17, 2007, 02:17 PM
 
Well Simon I am going to have to agree you on the Mac Mini, now that I think about it may have been a big leep for me to come to that point. What got me there was I see alot of people still talking about a headless IMac at a cheaper price point. I see that as what the Mac Mini is now.

I also believe that if I was not in the market for a new Mac I would not be this vocal about it. It always seems when I am looking to get a new computer, Apple takes it time getting the new product to market.

If I have to wait it's no big deal. I remember ordering a Macintosh just after the 1996 Macworld Expo and their was a 6 mos backorder. If I can get though that, this wait will be a walk in the park.

I still say Paris Expo, but I will wait buy to buy, till after WWDC to see if anything comes before then. I hope I eat crow on this point.
So with that in mind, if we see new IMac by WWDC, will it be redesigned or just a speed bump?
     
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Apr 17, 2007, 06:18 PM
 
You guys are all delusional if you think that WWDC is going to be Macs. Ain't gonna happen. Aside from the TV ads I'm on my wits end wondering if Apple gives a damn about the MacOS at all? Here's my take;

Leopard gets delayed in favor of the iPhone.
iPhone launch is slated the same day as WWDC.
At Macworld Apple spent all of 30 minutes introducing AppleTV and the rest of the 2hrs was spent on the infamous iPhone.

Leopard most likely will be re-introduced at WWDC but for probably all of 30 minutes and the other 2+ hrs will be on the iPhone.

That's why the delay for Leopard so not to upstage the iPhone.
My disappointment is, it's a cool phone but not all of Apple's customers (namely me) are all that interested in it and for Apple to hype up Leopard over a year ago and then push it back when nearing the launch shows the gadgets they make are more important.
     
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Apr 18, 2007, 03:44 AM
 
Originally Posted by hldan View Post
Aside from the TV ads I'm on my wits end wondering if Apple gives a damn about the MacOS at all?
Golly jolly! You're right! Let's all pull our shorts over our heads, start running around, hysterically scream bloody murder and then jump out of the next window. We're all doomed. Apple loves MS!

     
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Apr 18, 2007, 04:11 AM
 
Originally Posted by Simon View Post
Golly jolly! You're right! Let's all pull our shorts over our heads, start running around, hysterically scream bloody murder and then jump out of the next window. We're all doomed. Apple loves MS!

Unnecessary and childish reply from a wiseguy. I hope you amused yourself. If not I'm sure you know ways of doing that.
     
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Apr 18, 2007, 05:02 AM
 
Calm down. Mac OS X and Mac hardware sales are far too important for Apple to drop them in favor of the iPod or a phone nobody outside of Cupertino has actually used for extended periods of time. Leopard is delayed. But that doesn't indicate at all that Apple is abandoning Mac OS X development. We're just gonna have to be a tad more patient that's all.
     
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Apr 18, 2007, 10:35 PM
 
Originally Posted by hldan View Post
You guys are all delusional if you think that WWDC is going to be Macs. Ain't gonna happen. Aside from the TV ads I'm on my wits end wondering if Apple gives a damn about the MacOS at all? Here's my take;

Leopard gets delayed in favor of the iPhone.
iPhone launch is slated the same day as WWDC.
At Macworld Apple spent all of 30 minutes introducing AppleTV and the rest of the 2hrs was spent on the infamous iPhone.

Leopard most likely will be re-introduced at WWDC but for probably all of 30 minutes and the other 2+ hrs will be on the iPhone.

That's why the delay for Leopard so not to upstage the iPhone.
My disappointment is, it's a cool phone but not all of Apple's customers (namely me) are all that interested in it and for Apple to hype up Leopard over a year ago and then push it back when nearing the launch shows the gadgets they make are more important.
Well i sure hope they do some stuff, remember the "D" in WWDC is for developer. I bet you dimes to doughnuts that more then a handful of developers want to bring their apps to the IPhone. As for Mac OS 10.5 I'm thinking at the last moment they added some new stuff, or they took something out before WWDC last year and then put it back in. I'm just not buying the whole IPhone story.

By the way IPhone is coming after WWDC.
     
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Apr 24, 2007, 11:44 AM
 
Okay,

This is my first post for several months...

I think I'm a lot less of a techie that a lot off you guys out there, but here is my $0.02 worth.....

1.) The arrangement of having the innards behind the screen will remain.
2.) I think the new iMac will have a new case material. I suspect they will replace see-through plastic and white backing ,with a very cool ceramic material to better get rid of heat. Possibly in white, black and a very cool dark grey.
3.) I think the sides and the chin will be slimmed significantly, but a small chin will remain to house the aple logo
4.) The stand will raise, swivel and tilt in an inordinately elegant mechanism
5.) A redesigned motherboard will be introduced to make the inside as beautiful as the outside once again
6.) It will offer the same upgrade routes as today.. i.e expansion via USB, Firewire, Bluetooth, ehternet and wireless. You will not see bays to upgrade the HDD, or upgrade the grahics card. This is not what this machine is about.

I suspect a 17 inch may remain, with the option of touch screen, which can be disengaged from its stand mounting to use as a tablet. Yes this means an internal cheargable battery. Think of it as an enormous iPhone (but without the phone part).

To me, changes on this levl would be far more significant that what processor it has. Afterall, the processor is just on part of the computer. The paragraph above could provide a paradigm shift as to how these things are used.

It will be launched with Leopard.

These are my predictions.
     
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Apr 25, 2007, 10:31 AM
 
Agree on the 1), this design is a homerun according to Apple, and they're probably not wrong. Sales increased sharply after ditching the desk lamp design, and haven't tapered off yet.
2) is an interesting idea. If the entire rear of the machine functions as a heatsink, you could connect CPU, GPU and Northbridge to it through heatpipes and cut down on fans.
3) The chin can decrease, but the sides is partially to keep give contrast to the surroundings.
4) Nothing elegant required. The current stand does that except the raising - it twists nicely on the desk thanks to specially shaped rubber supports. Just modify it so that you can raise the display straight up.
5) No, actually. The old one was an attempt to get people to replace motherboards themselves when in trouble. Apple killed this before the redesign, because the program to send replacement motherboards didn't pan out. Very much doubt that they will restart it.
6) Agree. Do think that the option of two different GPUs will continue, though.

Disagree with the tablet idea. The iMac is actually quite heavy, especially with the PS integrated.
     
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Apr 25, 2007, 09:27 PM
 
Hi P, thanks for your feedbackon my thoughts.

The reason I think they will modify the motherboard design is to aide manufacturing and authorised repair. The cleaner the overall design of the iMac, the less wires will be used to connect it all together.

Trained labour cost in western countries is quite high, so any warranty repairs performed eat into profitability. Also, if the cost of offering a warranty repair can be reduced, more people are likely to take it up. Apple will certainly not want members of the public opening their iMacs and doing their own repairs.

Also, do agree with you the BTO graphics upgrades will still be offered. This is a quick way of making more people happy without inflating the headline figure.

I must say, I still look at my Mac with the same fondness of when I got it 14 months ago. Elegance and beauty on the inside and outside (Tiger and iMac). This is my first Mac, and I can't beleive I never had the foresight to switch sooner. Still, I have switched my Father since I bought mine, and will keep up the evangelism.

Apple is a great company, long may it live.
     
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Apr 26, 2007, 04:18 AM
 
Originally Posted by Simon View Post
I would understand the use of the portable chipset for the iMac to keep noise and heat low if they offered a HEM or at least a Yikes-style MP. However, since they aren't offering a HEM or a really low-end MP ( let's say something around $1599), Conroe would make more sense in the iMac since obviously that's what they are trying to sell as the "normal desktop" system.
Not that I really believe Conroe in the iMac is gonna happen, but it sure became even more interesting this week since Intel reduced Allendale, Conroe, and Kentsfield prices considerably.

Here's a 1k price comparison between Conroe and Merom:
• Merom 2.33 GHz: $637 vs. Conroe 2.4 GHz: $224
• Merom 2.16 GHz: $423 vs. Conroe 2.13 GHz: $183

And actually Conroe would even allow a 2.66 GHz iMac at half the CPU price of the current high end Merom iMac:
• Merom 2.33 GHz: $637 vs. Conroe 2.67 GHz: $316

Obviously Apple is also saving money by using the same chipset on the iMac as it uses in its portables, but this is by far not enough to make up for all the money they're losing due to the use of mobile CPUs in a 'desktop' Mac.
     
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Apr 26, 2007, 10:49 AM
 
Note also the introduction of the Allendale E4400, which is faster and cheaper than the E6320, although with a smaller cache. That would be an excellent chip in the low-end iMac.

It's funny money though - Intel charges what the market will bear, not cost, and with a customer like Apple I'm sure they're willing to negotiate to reach a good solution. Apple, having complete control of the operating system, could easily downclock Conroe and Allendale by dropping the FSB on the fly, reaching the same kind of energy savings as Merom does. Enthusiast motherboard makers do that on Windows already (iCool for Gigabyte, similar for others).
     
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Apr 26, 2007, 02:43 PM
 
Originally Posted by Simon View Post
Not that I really believe Conroe in the iMac is gonna happen, but it sure became even more interesting this week since Intel reduced Allendale, Conroe, and Kentsfield prices considerably.
Price was not the reason why Apple chose Merom over Conroe. So I don't see clearly what are you saying here.
     
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Apr 26, 2007, 03:57 PM
 
Does anyone think there is chance for the next imac to get esata or would that be a mac pro only thing ?

esata would be nice but if the next one had a smaller chin (maybe half the size it is now) and maybe 4gb ram i'd be happy.
     
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Apr 27, 2007, 05:44 AM
 
Originally Posted by Pierre B. View Post
Price was not the reason why Apple chose Merom over Conroe. So I don't see clearly what are you saying here.
Of course not. Merom was chosen due to its 35W TDP. The point is however, that Conroe would allow Apple to make a faster and less expensive iMac. The question is if they are willing to change the thermal design of the iMac to allow for Conroe's 65W TDP.

Personally I find the idea of making a quiet and slim iMac using Merom very attractive if it weren't for the fact that Apple doesn't really have a true medium class desktop Mac. Since the iMac has to fill the huge gap between the Mm and the MP I wonder if some size and cooling requirements should be relaxed in favor of using beefier components - especially when they would allow Apple to reduce the iMac's price point.

Again, I'm not saying this should happen, but I believe it's certainly worth being considered.
     
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Apr 27, 2007, 07:43 AM
 
Originally Posted by Simon View Post
The point is however, that Conroe would allow Apple to make a faster and less expensive iMac. The question is if they are willing to change the thermal design of the iMac to allow for Conroe's 65W TDP.
The other question is if the change in the thermal design to accomodate a Conroe means a bulkier machine. I am afraid so.

Apple is in a delicate position. For years now its consumer desktop line is shrinking in size. What if it decides to step back and make a heavy (for the iMac standards) Conroe machine? Yeah, I know, many here and elsewhere would say "bring it on!" but the current design is a prominent differentiation factor between the iMac and the mass PC. So, I don't know.

On the positive side, a Conroe iMac would be much cheaper.
     
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Apr 27, 2007, 08:47 AM
 
Absolutely! Size matters and Apple has certainly gotten a lot of applause for designs like the current iMac or the Mac mini. The feature density of these machines is indeed awesome.

OTOH I get a feeling that Apple has somehow managed to put themselves into a corner with these designs since their lineup is fairly simple. The iMac isn't just a slim and sexy desktop for people concerned with style - it's Apple's medium class desktop computer. Likewise, the mini isn't just an ultra-compact Mac - it's Apple's budget or entry-level computer. In both cases the Apple has to cater to two markets at the same time. The mini could be cheaper and perform better (3.5" HD, possibly a dedicated GPU, Allendale vs. Yonah, etc.) if it weren't quite as small. Ditto for the iMac if it wouldn't have to be so slim.

If Apple had a configurable inexpensive HEM this all wouldn't really be an issue, but they just don't. And so while many may like the slim iMac or the ultra-compact mini, those Macs leave a large gap for a fast and inexpensive Mac.
     
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Apr 27, 2007, 10:36 AM
 
I think on a board for computer enthusiasts it is easy to lose sight of how UNdemanding the average user is. John Q. Public checks email, browses the web, edits a few photos, MAYBE uses iMovie a few times a year, and then plays a few games without really caring about optimal resolution.

I've been in the computer industry (selling, consulting, repairing, sysadmin) for almost 15 years. Take that with a grain of salt. But I've seen an increasing need for production cycles to slow down. The programmers simply can't keep up. Even the high end games could be better if they could optimize the code for what the hardware is capable of.

While Dell wants disposable computers, Apple wants to create long term assets. The power of an iMac is fine for 90% of those using it. If anything I think Apple is neglecting the power of its software engineering to maximize these long term assets.
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Apr 27, 2007, 04:31 PM
 
Originally Posted by wolfen View Post
I think on a board for computer enthusiasts it is easy to lose sight of how UNdemanding the average user is.
Indeed, for those of us who like to push our hardware it's very difficult to remember how small a minority we are and how that plays out in terms of economics.

Originally Posted by wolfen View Post
But I've seen an increasing need for production cycles to slow down. The programmers simply can't keep up. ... While Dell wants disposable computers, Apple wants to create long term assets. The power of an iMac is fine for 90% of those using it. If anything I think Apple is neglecting the power of its software engineering to maximize these long term assets.
This plays out two ways, actually. For the average user, it extends the life of the computer while not requiring Apple to over-equip the hardware (resulting in higher cost/lower profit to Apple). For the more power-oriented consumer, it actually shortens the upgrade cycle... and we're generally cool with that because we've been cycling our hardware every 10-18 months anyway. In both cases, Apple wins.

Of course, I'm sitting here trying to figure out when the next cycle is going to be as I have two computers to buy for home - one to upgrade and one for our daughter who's now old enough for her own [so she doesn't monopolize ours ] - and I know we should be close. With the delay of Leopard, however, the timing of upgrades for the iMac and Mac Mini are less clear.

It's times like this I start to dislike the technology product lifecycle
     
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May 1, 2007, 04:42 PM
 
Soooo my Mac friends... It's May 1. Where are our new iMacs?

I'm hoping for an announcement within two weeks, but I'm now thinking we just might have to wait until the June 11 Stevenote.


Originally Posted by Simon View Post
Of course not. Merom was chosen due to its 35W TDP. The point is however, that Conroe would allow Apple to make a faster and less expensive iMac. The question is if they are willing to change the thermal design of the iMac to allow for Conroe's 65W TDP.

Personally I find the idea of making a quiet and slim iMac using Merom very attractive if it weren't for the fact that Apple doesn't really have a true medium class desktop Mac. Since the iMac has to fill the huge gap between the Mm and the MP I wonder if some size and cooling requirements should be relaxed in favor of using beefier components - especially when they would allow Apple to reduce the iMac's price point.

Again, I'm not saying this should happen, but I believe it's certainly worth being considered.
FWIW, the 24" iMac 2.33 GHz Core 2 Duo is quieter at full blast than the 20" iMac G5 2.0 970FX at idle.
     
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May 1, 2007, 05:13 PM
 
Originally Posted by Eug View Post
Soooo my Mac friends... It's May 1. Where are our new Macs?
As expected. The SR release is May 9. No new iMacs before then.

SR per se isn't that important to most users, but from a marketing POV the MBP should be updated (even if it concerns mainly the BTO options) relatively soon.
     
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May 1, 2007, 06:56 PM
 
Originally Posted by Eug View Post
Soooo my Mac friends... It's May 1. Where are our new iMacs?

I'm hoping for an announcement within two weeks, but I'm now thinking we just might have to wait until the June 11 Stevenote.
The releases are already flowing out of the other OEMs (I've seen Lenovo, HP/Compaq, Dell, and Asus), so it sounds like they don't expect any initial capacity/volume constraints.

edit: And Sony too.
     
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May 1, 2007, 08:02 PM
 
Ah yes



The X3100 graphics would be good for the MacBook. Interestingly, the chipset supports HDMI.

It'd be interesting to get an iMac with HDMI, or at least DVI with HDCP support.
     
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May 1, 2007, 08:21 PM
 
The question is Apple going to sit on their hands, or are they going to do something with Santa Rosa.
     
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May 1, 2007, 08:47 PM
 
I don't want to put words in other people's mouths, but I think most of us believe Apple will use Santa Rosa sooner rather than later. However, I'm not sure exactly what "sooner" means. June 11 might be "soon" enough for Jobs.
     
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May 1, 2007, 09:32 PM
 
My guess is Stevenote. I sure hope it's no later than that.
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May 2, 2007, 03:28 AM
 
Originally Posted by Simon View Post
As expected. The SR release is May 9. No new iMacs before then.

SR per se isn't that important to most users, but from a marketing POV the MBP should be updated (even if it concerns mainly the BTO options) relatively soon.
Less acronyms please! I only understood BTO and MBP. Please don't go acronym crazy as if everyone knows what you are talking about.
     
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May 2, 2007, 05:47 AM
 
All,

Sorry if you feel I have been living in some sort of bubble for the last few months, maybe I have. This whole Santa Roas thing has got me thinking... I have two questions:

1.) What extra performance increase does santa rosa offer over the current chips?
2.) What extra performance increase is this likely to bestow upon the imac
3.) Will the performance increase only be noticed when doing intensive work like video editting, or will the performance increase be seen in other things like email?

If the answers are in the region of:
1.) 20%
2.) 10%
3.) Video 10%, email negligable

then apple will wait until October, rather than June. I'm sure the leopard OS announcements in June will be enormous, and apple will want it to stand on its own (well, stand with the iPhone). When they release Leopard in October, then you might see a new iMac to run it on, just in time for Christmas. Afterall, iPhone stories will be run to death by then, and the press will need a new apple hardware fix to keep their reporters busy.

Developing iMac's costs a lot of money, and I'm sure apple does not want to be caught up in Intels relentless development cycles, constantly trying to keep ahead of the competition. The iMac, is possibly the worlds most beautiful computer - an elegant balance of design brilliance and technical capability. Nothing comes close. My iMac is now 15 months old, and I can still wow my friends with it today. I'm not sure apple needs an update until October. Chin or not, nothing comes close!

For the tech-heads, the Mac is still the only computer capable of running OSX, Linux and Windows. If you really want to run OSX, you have one choice - Buy a Mac. There is no hardware competition out there, so it doesn't really matter if you don't have the latest and greatest hardware, you can only buy what is available. If a buyer makes the decision to buy a PC rather than a Mac, because its got Santa Rosa, surely the mac wasn't right for them in the first place. Such a person does not focus on what they can do with a computer, only that it has the latest bits.

Sorry for the rant (I used to be a techie, and now I have seen the light)
     
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May 2, 2007, 06:07 AM
 
Originally Posted by hldan View Post
Less acronyms please! I only understood BTO and MBP. Please don't go acronym crazy as if everyone knows what you are talking about.
Ah c'mon. Santa Rosa was used about five dozen times in this thread, so SR isn't that much of a stretch. Sorry about POV (point of view), it's used on Wikipedia all the time so I'm pretty used to it.

And this might come in handy next time.
     
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May 2, 2007, 06:19 AM
 
Originally Posted by dale View Post
1.) What extra performance increase does santa rosa offer over the current chips?
2.) What extra performance increase is this likely to bestow upon the imac
3.) Will the performance increase only be noticed when doing intensive work like video editting, or will the performance increase be seen in other things like email?
It depends very much on what you do. The increased FSB will help applications which are bottlenecked by the bus rather than by the CPU (there are Merom benchmarks showing the CPU idle due to waiting for the FSB to fetch/write data), but that's only a certain subset of tasks. In everyday use this is not going to lead to a performance increase of more than 20% at best. More likely is ~10%. If Apple decides to use Robson (flash cache) expect faster boot time and app load time; possibly also a small increase in battery life. Systems that use integrated graphics are also likely to see a graphics performance increase due to the new GMA (X)3000, but that only affects the cheapest iMac. Also, higher end Merom XE are expected for use with SR (X7800 and X7900 running at 2.6 and 2.8 GHz), but they will be pretty expensive (~$800 and ~$1k) and won't be available until later in 2007.

So to make it short, the answer to 3 is likely yes.
     
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May 2, 2007, 07:48 AM
 
Originally Posted by Eug View Post
Soooo my Mac friends... It's May 1. Where are our new iMacs?
Ah, thanks for remembering me that May 1 is a working day in the U.S.

Originally Posted by Eug View Post
FWIW, the 24" iMac 2.33 GHz Core 2 Duo is quieter at full blast than the 20" iMac G5 2.0 970FX at idle.
Quietness is a very nice feature of the current iMac line that I would like to see survive in the next updates.
     
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May 2, 2007, 07:54 AM
 
Originally Posted by Eug View Post
However, I'm not sure exactly what "sooner" means. June 11 might be "soon" enough for Jobs.
You never know with him. Apple Expo Paris may too be "soon enough". And now that I am thinking again about this, the introduction of a redesigned iMac fits better the Apple Expo. But if it is just an update with the current form factor, then it can be anytime.
     
 
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