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You are here: MacNN Forums > Hardware - Troubleshooting and Discussion > Mac Desktops > Dealbreaker for headless iMac?

Dealbreaker for headless iMac? (Page 2)
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BenRoethig
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Jul 23, 2004, 11:38 PM
 
Originally posted by bborofka:
They (might) buy complete systems, but that doesn't mean they just chuck the whole old PC into the trash, which is really all you can do with the with iMac. The LCD has a much longer life than the computer, it's not practical to attach it to the computer.

I work in IT for my University and we are in the process of upgrading 100s of computers on campus with new Dells with nice 17" FPDs. Do we just chuck the old PC that's being replaced? No, especially if they have an LCD. They normally trickle those down, and salvage lots of useful things out of the PC, like HD, RAM, video cards, etc. The only thing you can salvage out of an iMac is RAM.

It's not practical or economical for institutions to buy LCD-attached computers. If it was, why aren't all-in-one LCD PCs (or even Macs) flying off the shelves?

Apple, just give us a PowerMac G5 Express.
Aluminum mini-tower
Single 1.8 and 2.0GHz
60 and 80GB HDs
256MB RAM
Combo and SuperDrive
1 free drive bay, 3 PCI-Express slots w/ 1 DVI 64 and 128MB video card, 2 free RAM slots, USB 2.0, Firewire.

$1099 and $1399 respectively.

They'll sell like crazy and won't cannibalize. Why? Because whoever is going to spend an asinine amount of money on a new computer ($2500+) is still going to need the ultimate in power and expandability, and will still choose the PowerMac. The fence sitters, PC switchers, and budget-conscious buyers out there will finally have a Mac that fits their needs.
Couldn't have said it better myself. Also, while most people do not upgrade, they at least want the option. Which is why AIO options are pretty much limited to the eMac, iMac, and the Gateway profile series.
     
Carmissimo
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Jul 24, 2004, 09:45 AM
 
Apple already tried a headless iMac, namely the Cube.
What a rousing success that was.
But I don't think Steve Jobs has abandoned his dream of making the box on our desks all but disappear. It sounds like the new iMac will try to incorporate elements of the box into the monitor footprint, effectively producing the same end result that the Cube aspired to removing that clunky box from the equation.
The Cube failed because it was too little computing power for the price.
An iMac with no real box element could work if the price/performance dynamic is handled just right.
     
lkrupp
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Jul 24, 2004, 02:54 PM
 
Apple, I bet most of us agree, REALLY needs to get into the lower end market SOON. They can't live forevery on the limited high end market. They must gain USER share in the long run, and they have to start with the cheaper systems and then build the owners up, just like a Scion car is targeted at teens, then the graduate to Toyotas as early adults, and Lexus when they are even more affluent.
I think Steve has made it perfectly clear that he is NOT INTERESTED in the low-end market. Most "headless iMac" posters here will be sorely disappointed when the new iMac is announced. It will be an all-in-one machine. It will not be low-end. Mark this down.

Having a low-end Mac won't attract new users. People who base their buying decisions on PRICE ALONE are the ones buying low-end machines. Apple simply cannot produce a cheap machine and still have it be a Mac. And Apple cannot compete with Dell/Gateway et al in the low-end market. The Apple brand is a premium brand, a high-end brand, a niche brand. The iMac is a mid-range machine.
     
Commodus
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Jul 24, 2004, 04:50 PM
 
Originally posted by Carmissimo:
Apple already tried a headless iMac, namely the Cube.
What a rousing success that was.
But I don't think Steve Jobs has abandoned his dream of making the box on our desks all but disappear. It sounds like the new iMac will try to incorporate elements of the box into the monitor footprint, effectively producing the same end result that the Cube aspired to removing that clunky box from the equation.
The Cube failed because it was too little computing power for the price.
An iMac with no real box element could work if the price/performance dynamic is handled just right.
That wasn't the headless iMac. It was called the "PowerMac G4 Cube," remember.

It's been said by people time and time again, but the main reason the Cube struggled was because Apple had priced it out of its market. Instead of sitting between the iMac and regular PowerMacs, it was $1799 - more than the (base model, faster) PowerMac. Even the price cuts made it hard to justify to anyone but those who were already sold on the idea.

Things have changed though. Small form factors no longer command the huge premiums they once did. The G5 is generally less expensive to produce than the G4, and other components' prices have dropped as well. Even Apple has publically acknowledged that they need to at least hit the $999 "sweet spot" price. A Superdrive eMac (the only current $999 system) doesn't quite count!

Don't get me wrong, I wouldn't be surprised if the iMac G5 was an all-in-one. But a headless system for $999, so long as it's handled right, would do a lot for Apple's sales figures.
24-inch iMac Core 2 Duo 2.4GHz
     
BradMacPro
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Jul 24, 2004, 06:33 PM
 
The Power Mac G4 Cube was an executive toy. A value-based mini-tower or desktop like the old Performa 6300 would be a good seller to switchers, as you can repurpose a old monitor. The machine had 1 or two PCI slots. My suggestion for this type of new style computer from Apple would be inspired by the 4400 by it's basics and compromises. If Apple wanted a headless eMac, for simple uses, it should have a single 1.25 or 1.5GHz G4 processor and relatively easy replaceable hard drive and RAM upgrade. The 6300 had it's motherboard slide out on rails. The front popped off and exposed the hard drive on a slide out tray. I'd rather see that go out the back if possible for esthetic reasons. Give this nice little desktop Mac front panel slim-line DVD drive, sort of like used on the PowerBook G3s and front mounted USB 2.0 and FireWire port, for the iPod and digital camera. The computer would just be a base for a monitor, so it takes up no real desk space. If this machine had a AGP slot for the video card and no PCI slot, then even the gamers would be happy as they could upgrade the video card in the future. This would also allow Apple to sell a model with a crappy card for those doing only 2D work, like the Internet, Word Processing and desktop publishing, and then another model with a gamers video card, but not too extreme to compete with a G5, a ATI Radeon 9600 would be fine. The 9600 supports DVI and thus VGA monitors. Some limited version that only supported one monitor would be OK. Hard drive could even be a 2.5 form factor 60 or 80GB drive, fine for these basic users, but it should be a 5400 RPM drive, with a 7200 RPM as a BTO option. small form factor and VALUE are the important factors for this market segment. If we could get a PCI card slot in there, maybe Apple would bundle a Miglia Alchemy DVR card to bring in that whole digital lifestyle hub deal on the better model. That card is quite a deal. This could be the revival of the Macintosh TV. This product could easily sell for an attractive price for the basic model and Apple would have a compelling product for the switchers and business users. Since Apple no longer sells a "Power Macintosh G4", they can call it simply the Macintosh G4, or maybe add "small form factor" or better yet, the MiniMac G4.
     
ChillieMac
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Jul 24, 2004, 07:10 PM
 
The current iMac suffers bad sales because of it's lack of price to performance ratio and it fails to meet the needs of MOST CONSUMERS* and the lack of upgrade options to get the machine capeable of doing what they need.

By MOST CONSUMERS*, I mean gamers (which is no small number considering how HUGE the gaming market). Regardless of whether you play games or not, there are dozens of people for every one of you who do or would if their machines weren't already outdated in terms of performance.

Also, aside from the lucrative gaming market, Mac OS X is extremely graphics rich and demanding and more of the performance and "snapiness" will DEPEND on great GPU performance.

Here's what I propose...

Upgradeable video cards OR the current top graphics card soldered to the motherboard (ATI Radeo 9800).

If upgradeable...

PCI Express - ATI X300 with BTO option for ATI X600 (leave the X800 for PowerMac towers).

This allows customers to pick what level of video they need according to what they use it for. Having upgradeable video cards would give incentive to ATI and NVidia to make more cards compatible for us Mac users.

As for the fear of galvinizing sales from the PowerMac G5 towers...

a) get over it...don't lose sales to customers who are unwilling to pay $2000 plus to get decent hardware

b) there will be enough differences to make the DISTINCTION between consumer desktops and pro desktops
1) Single vs. Dual processors
2) Expansion slots
3) More RAM slots (up to 8 GB on towers, up to 4 GB on iMacs)
4) Headless (allows choice of monitors)
5) Built-in Bluetooth and Airport Xtreme (build to order on iMacs)

c) Price point is key...more than eMacs and less than PowerMacs
Good
17" LCD
G5 1.6
256MB RAM (DDR400), expandable to 4GB
60 GB Serial ATA HD
Combo DVD/CDRW Drive
NVidia 5200 32MB
$999

Better
17" LCD
G5 1.8
512MB RAM (2 256MB DDR 400), expandable to 4GB
80 GB Serial ATA HD
Combo DVD/CDRW Drive
ATI 9600 64MB
$1299

Best
17" LCD (maybe 20" as Best plus option for $350 more)
G5 2.0
512MB RAM (1 512 DDR 400 stick)
80 GB Serial ATA HD
SuperDrive
PCI Express ATI X300
$1599

Granted this setup would require PowerMac G5 towers to bump up their graphics cards (128 MB Video RAM as low end, 256 MB High end), and a minimum of 512 DDR 400 for the towers as well.

Not one of these suggestions would seriously hurt Apple's profit margin and would seriously attract sales.

Would YOU buy one of these machines in a slick new case? Do you think gamers would? Do you think a switcher would?

Comments welcome.
     
teknopimp
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Jul 24, 2004, 07:16 PM
 
cut those prices in half.
     
mitchell_pgh
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Jul 25, 2004, 01:10 AM
 


I've been talking about a headless iMac/eMac forever but people always try to make it something it's not.

Just cut the head off and place DVI + ADC on the back along with the standard ports.

Regarding any remote... why not have apple make a simple $39.99 USB RF or Bluetooth remote that will let you control iTunes, iDVD, keynote, volume, and whatever else from wherever...

The only thing making me NOT say that the iMac and eMac aren't 100% amazing are the monitors that are attached.
     
raferx
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Jul 25, 2004, 03:37 AM
 
No way, no how.

A headless iMac will never happen.

VESA? C'mon people.

A savvy entry-level G4 powered mini-tower is a whole other story though.
Cheers,
raferx
     
BenRoethig
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Jul 25, 2004, 10:30 AM
 
Originally posted by mitchell_pgh:


I've been talking about a headless iMac/eMac forever but people always try to make it something it's not.

Just cut the head off and place DVI + ADC on the back along with the standard ports.

Regarding any remote... why not have apple make a simple $39.99 USB RF or Bluetooth remote that will let you control iTunes, iDVD, keynote, volume, and whatever else from wherever...

The only thing making me NOT say that the iMac and eMac aren't 100% amazing are the monitors that are attached.
Put that optical drive horizontal instead of vertical, and that's what I'm talking about.
     
BenRoethig
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Jul 25, 2004, 10:36 AM
 
Originally posted by Carmissimo:
Apple already tried a headless iMac, namely the Cube.
What a rousing success that was.
But I don't think Steve Jobs has abandoned his dream of making the box on our desks all but disappear. It sounds like the new iMac will try to incorporate elements of the box into the monitor footprint, effectively producing the same end result that the Cube aspired to removing that clunky box from the equation.
The Cube failed because it was too little computing power for the price.
An iMac with no real box element could work if the price/performance dynamic is handled just right.
The flat panel iMac didn't fare too well either (even before the G5), so where does that leave us? The only option left would be a new mini-tower.
     
mitchell_pgh
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Jul 25, 2004, 01:05 PM
 
Originally posted by Commodus:
That wasn't the headless iMac. It was called the "PowerMac G4 Cube," remember.

It's been said by people time and time again, but the main reason the Cube struggled was because Apple had priced it out of its market. Instead of sitting between the iMac and regular PowerMacs, it was $1799 - more than the (base model, faster) PowerMac. Even the price cuts made it hard to justify to anyone but those who were already sold on the idea.

Things have changed though. Small form factors no longer command the huge premiums they once did. The G5 is generally less expensive to produce than the G4, and other components' prices have dropped as well. Even Apple has publically acknowledged that they need to at least hit the $999 "sweet spot" price. A Superdrive eMac (the only current $999 system) doesn't quite count!

Don't get me wrong, I wouldn't be surprised if the iMac G5 was an all-in-one. But a headless system for $999, so long as it's handled right, would do a lot for Apple's sales figures.
Yep, the cube priced itself out of the market. SO many people were about to buy a cube, but then realized for another $300 you could get a dual processor system that was still expandable (at the time, not everyone was on board with firewire and USB so expansion slots were still important to even average to pro-sumers.

Basically the cube was a headless PowerMac... not a headless iMac.
     
bobwoods
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Jul 25, 2004, 01:20 PM
 
Originally posted by booboo:
A headless Mac could address two segments of the market that Apple don't currently cover:

iServe - basic inexpensive file server for where the xServe is overkill.

iMedia - a digital replacement for my DVD/VHS: quite a popular market in the PC world -but I'd rather use a Mac - one that fits under my TV. I could also use it to play games on my TV - OK there aren't that many right now, but this incentive can only help the Mac games market . . .
This is exactly what I'm looking for - a cheap headless server. The xServe is way overkill for SOHO applications, way too big, expensive and too noisy as well. A small "personal server" would have an instant market - small businesses, departmental servers, or home servers. Offer Mac OS X Server as a $299 option and you can address both the server market and the home iMac market. Get the box itself down to $999 and they'll fly out the door. Make it small enough to set under or on top of the foot of the new LCD monitors and it's still effectively "zero footprint."

I currently use an old graphite iMac, sitting in my basement shop, running X server to get all my "digital hub" files off my laptops, and as a web server. If Apple could set up some sort of simple tunneling protocol (for those without static IP) so that they would be accessible from anywhere with a net connetion, it'd be a killer setup.
     
mitchell_pgh
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Jul 25, 2004, 05:45 PM
 
I think there is a need for an iServer, but OS X server may be overkill. I think something that could be in the $599 range that isn't necessarily the fastest, but can stream music, etc. etc. etc.

I could also see a device that acts as a stereo component where you can connect your iPod to this device and this device to your TV set and Stereo set.
     
mitchell_pgh
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Jul 25, 2004, 05:59 PM
 


I could see Apple not using this because it's brushed metal and would confuse the Pro/Consumer levels, but I think this would be NICE because it's also stackable.

$599
1.25GHz PowerPC G4
256MB DDR333 SDRAM
40GB Ultra ATA drive
Combo drive

$749
1.25GHz PowerPC G4
256MB DDR333 SDRAM
80GB Ultra ATA drive
SuperDrive
     
TheDoctor
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Jul 25, 2004, 09:30 PM
 
I like some of these later specs I've been seeing.

I have a few other thoughts to add on this issue as well. The headless "iMac" (or whatever, I'll call it "xMac" since someone else did) would be an excellent choice for schools with a large investment in Windows-based hardware. The "xMac" could use the monitors the school already owns, reducing the cost of replacing old hardware. Apple would also need to change some of their policies on software upgrades to schools to convince more districts to make the switch. Apple should provide schools with free operating system upgrades for 5-7 years. School boards would really go for this as software agreements often end up being a significant portion of any technology budget.

A $500-600 "xMac" should also be agressively targeted at college students. Let's face it, most college kids (and/or their parents) are taking on a large debt just to pay for their education. They can't easily afford even a $1200 iMac. However, a machine in the $500-600 range would be competitive with low-end offerings from Dell, HP, et. al. Apple could bundle iLife and an updated AppleWorks (and perhaps even some free iTunes Music Store downloads) to entice students to choose the Mac. Apple should also consider offering college students the same prices as they charge higher education insitutions. the goal of the xMac should be getting more young people exposed to the power and elegance of OS X (even if it means cutting profit margins now). When these college students enter the "real world" they will remember their Mac experience as a positive one and purchase more Mac computers, perhaps even the higher-end model. The important thing for Apple, though, is to grow their market share.

For specs on the xMac, I was thinking something along the lines of:

Choice of: 1 GHz or 1.25 GHz G4
2-3 DDR RAM slots (using desktop memory and not the more expensive laptop modules)
Integrated ATi 9200 GPU with 32-128 MB of dedicated VRAM
Gigabit ethernet (preferred, but 100 Mbps would suffice)
1 PCI slot (more on this below)
Combo drive (possible superdrive as BTO option)
40-60 GB Ultra ATA hard drive (7200 rpm standard to increase system performance)
2-4 USB 2.0 ports
2 Firewire 800 ports (mainly as a way to encourage manufacturers to make more Firewire 800 devices)
AirPort Extreme slot
A decent pair of speakers
Standard audio in/out jacks
Price: $599 (less perhaps for schools and college students)

Why the single PCI slot? Well, someone else already mentioned that there is a need for an "iServe." That PCI slot would let the user put in an extra NIC and run the "xMac" as a pretty nice (and low-footprint) server. Even without OS X server, there is plenty of software out there that would make the "xMac" a nice light-duty web server, file server, intranet server, etc. It would also make a nice platform for someone considering switching to the Mac to learn OS X/UNIX on.

That's my $2 worth.
     
RayX
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Jul 25, 2004, 10:40 PM
 
The armchair CEOs are out in full force today...
     
RayX
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Jul 25, 2004, 10:44 PM
 
Originally posted by mitchell_pgh:
I think there is a need for an iServer, but OS X server may be overkill. I think something that could be in the $599 range that isn't necessarily the fastest, but can stream music, etc. etc. etc.

I could also see a device that acts as a stereo component where you can connect your iPod to this device and this device to your TV set and Stereo set.
Mac OS X Server:

Requirements

Xserve, Power Mac G5, G4 or G3, iMac or eMac computer; 128MB of RAM, at least 256MB of RAM for high-demand servers running multiple services; built-in USB; 4GB of available disk space.
     
BradMacPro
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Jul 25, 2004, 11:01 PM
 
Originally posted by RayX:
Mac OS X Server:

Requirements

Xserve, Power Mac G5, G4 or G3, iMac or eMac computer; 128MB of RAM, at least 256MB of RAM for high-demand servers running multiple services; built-in USB; 4GB of available disk space.
I've set up a eMac with a BTO larger internal HD and RAM upgrade and an external FW HD for backup with Mac OS X Server S/W for a small network and it works great. I liked the brushed metal "illustration" above but would like to see front mounted USB and FireWire. The image reminded me more of a consumer electronics item, like a CD player or TIVO box.
     
mitchell_pgh
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Jul 26, 2004, 01:54 AM
 
Originally posted by RayX:
The armchair CEOs are out in full force today...
When a large contingency of Mac users all say that Apple needs a headless (thus, less expensive) iMac, Apple should listen. It's not like we are asking for faster processors, bigger hard drives, a faster OS, or cheaper machines.

Just chop the monitor off of the eMac!
(and reduce the price accordingly - no monitor, less expensive shipping, less expensive storage etc.)

Want this thing to sell like crazy? Add a place for a second HD and make it dual monitor capable.
     
Evan_11
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Jul 26, 2004, 02:04 AM
 
I dunno. With Apple subtlely getting everyone excited for the new iMac, notification emails and all I think we'll see a brushed aluminum design. Those new cinema displays are damn sexy and when I was at the Apple store the other day everyone was oogling over them and pretty much ignoring the iMacs. I like the g4 design but it really does look like something out of 2001: A Space Odyssey and 2001 is soooo 3 years ago. I was looking at the illustration for the Vesa mount and was inspired by an Arch like neck which I think the iMac G5 will have. Very simple design like the new cinema displays and I think we'll see a slot loading drive as a final touch of class.
     
mactropolis
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Jul 26, 2004, 02:09 AM
 
The very idea of a stand-alone headless Mac running OS X just drives me crazy inside.

A lot of the debate in this forum has focused on what the iMac is and isn't. I say the simplest solution is just to create an entire new brand or modify the existing brands. For example, let the eMac be the headless Mac and allow the iMac to be everyone's favorite easy-to-setup AIO so that guy's ("babywriter2") wife can just take it out the box and use it. Or maybe keep the eMac and iMac as AIO and introduce the all new headless xMac or iServer just for us MacNN pro-sumers type that want it so bad. The debate should not be whether or not the iMac should be headless. Apple needs a headless Mac. Period. Call it iMac, iMac Express, iMac Mini, eMac, eMac Mini, xMac, iServer, PowerMac Express, iBook Pro, whatever, it just needs to be headless, upgradable, and affordable. I also generally agree that Apple should keep at least one AIO form factor Mac for those completely computer illiterate that just want to plug it in and press a button. But might I also point out that Dell and the other PC box makers have no problems with seperate monitors. People still buy them. Even first time users. You learn how to plug in a monitor or ask a friend or relative. Imagine that.

And to those people who say Apple is now destined to be a premium brand, a high-end brand, a niche player, the BMW or Bose of the computer market, might I remind you of Apple's original tagline: The Computer For The Rest Of Us. Excuse me, but when did the Comptuer for the Rest Of US mean that $3000.00 is the cheapest price for a Mac that's actually upgradable. These days, the "Computer for the rest of us" obviously is Dell despite the giant bughole that is Windows XP. Yes, i know facts say 80% of people never upgrade their machines, and that probably is very true. But I can also bet that 80% of people judge upgradability as a very important factor when purchasing a system. The Apple today (computer-wise/non-iPod) is not the Apple i loved from yester-year. I think that so many years of non-growth has left Apple & Steve with a premium brand mentality. However, if Apple takes the gamble and decides to compete price-wise again (enter the low-end market), i'm sure the virtues of our Mac OS X will win World+Dog over Crap XP. How Steve expects to capture evan 5% market share at these prices is completely beyond me.

I eagerly anticipate all comments & feedback here or feel free to e-mail.
( Last edited by mactropolis; Jul 26, 2004 at 02:14 AM. )
Death To Extremists!
     
kokkao
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Jul 26, 2004, 07:12 AM
 
I came late to Mac as I could never get to grips with OS9. But OSX, the increasing web- based intrusion/vandalism, and the constant need to keep XP up to date drove me into Apple's arms. The final decider? The sheer elegance and flexibility of the current FP iMac's design. Sitting here writing this I can't see the base at all - just the 17" screen ergonomically positioned just right. I love this machine.

But what would make me change to the new model?

A combination of design and specification I suppose. I guess I don't really care whether it turns out to be AIO or not, as long as I can buy an AIO type package at a fair price which means a bit of a discount over separate units purchase. The killer factor here is of course DESIGN. The separate units must visually integrate which, if Apple is going to base it around the new screens, must mean aluminium finish, unless there is to be a separate screen range which doesn't make sense economically.

As far as the specification goes - for newcomers it has to look up-to-date and for updaters it has to be beyond the existing which means a single G5 chip. All models, except the base should have Superdrive - and even of the base it should be BTO option - slot load would be great. Bluetooth and Airport built-in and good upgradeable memory. Graphics - well for those of you with enough time on your hands to play games I guess a demon card would be good and certainly a better one than the current. Add plenty of USB/Firewire ports. Oh, and a surround sound decoding capability would be nice looking at the digital hub lifestyle concept.

Pricewise? It seems to me that it is going to be a tall order to change the perceived Apple image of a somewhat more upmarket computer with all the price implications that comes with. The latest eMac helps (why don't they advertise that more aggressively?, and product placement on TV/film would help) - but nowadays an ordinary screen although cheap is so.... yesterday.
I would be delighted to be wrong but I don't think the new iMac will be much cheaper than the present one if at all, and if one has to buy the screen (20" new FP) separately - forget it!
     
mitchell_pgh
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Jul 26, 2004, 08:13 AM
 
I don't care what they call it xMac, H-Mac, Poop-Mac...


Rip the guts out of the eMac and put it in to a headless system
It's a simple concept that would be very cost effective as they wouldn't need to design a new motherboard etc. etc.

I also don't agree with the "Apple is the BMW of the computer industry" either, as every time I go to buy a new Mac, I see the price of the crap dell and my pocketbook starts to shake.

Not all of us need the raw speed of the G5... and being locked in to a monitor that you aren't crazy about isn't fun either.
     
Evan_11
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Jul 26, 2004, 10:51 AM
 
Originally posted by mitchell_pgh:

Not all of us need the raw speed of the G5... and being locked in to a monitor that you aren't crazy about isn't fun either.
Why the hell don't you just buy a re-furbished 1.6 G5 for $1200 and STFU. incessant whinning will not suddenly make a product appear.
     
TheDoctor
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Jul 26, 2004, 12:15 PM
 
The fact is that Apple is on the verge of pricing themselves out of business. The eMac and iBook lines are really Apple's only affordibly priced computers. And an 85 lb eMac is NOT a good computer to sell to PC switchers. Apple needs a cheap machine to expose more users and grow their market share in the future.
     
mitchell_pgh
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Jul 26, 2004, 01:47 PM
 
Originally posted by Evan_11:
Why the hell don't you just buy a re-furbished 1.6 G5 for $1200 and STFU. incessant whinning will not suddenly make a product appear.
1) There aren't any 1200 1.6 G5s for sale you insensitive clod.

2) The solution to a missing product line shouldn't be "then buy a refurbished or older model." Try pitching a refurbished model in a meeting.

3) It's a forum... I can give my opinion in a constructive way... and I don't feel I've been incessantly whining.

4) If Apple doesn't hear us whine, nothing is going to change. We would be using OS X 10.1, iTunes 2.4 still be choking on IE 5...

5) TheDoctor hit the nail on the head. Try to convince a user that's ready to spend between $1000 - $1200 on a new computer that an eMac is the only option desktop. Especially when they already have a 17" LCD that they picked up for $300.

"You can buy a refurbished PowerMac!" (which doesn't currently exist)
     
bborofka
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Jul 26, 2004, 02:03 PM
 
Originally posted by mitchell_pgh:
I don't care what they call it xMac, H-Mac, Poop-Mac...


Rip the guts out of the eMac and put it in to a headless system
It's a simple concept that would be very cost effective as they wouldn't need to design a new motherboard etc. etc.

I also don't agree with the "Apple is the BMW of the computer industry" either, as every time I go to buy a new Mac, I see the price of the crap dell and my pocketbook starts to shake.

Not all of us need the raw speed of the G5... and being locked in to a monitor that you aren't crazy about isn't fun either.
I agree that we desperately need a headless mini-tower to run OS X, but I don't want an eMac's internals. The G4 is old, slow, and not going anywhere. It needs to die already. The G5 is the processor and architecture that bring the Mac up to speed with the rest of the PC industry and needs to be expanded throughout Apple's product line.
     
mitchell_pgh
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Jul 26, 2004, 02:12 PM
 
Originally posted by bborofka:
I agree that we desperately need a headless mini-tower to run OS X, but I don't want an eMac's internals. The G4 is old, slow, and not going anywhere. It needs to die already. The G5 is the processor and architecture that bring the Mac up to speed with the rest of the PC industry and needs to be expanded throughout Apple's product line.
I think this new headless mac would follow along with the iMac and eMac CPU progression (which is in transition from G4 to G5). My point is that they don't need to redesign a new motherboard for it. Just use whatever is in the other systems.
     
babywriter2  (op)
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Jul 26, 2004, 03:44 PM
 
Originally posted by mactropolis:
A lot of the debate in this forum has focused on what the iMac is and isn't. I say the simplest solution is just to create an entire new brand or modify the existing brands. For example, let the eMac be the headless Mac and allow the iMac to be everyone's favorite easy-to-setup AIO so that guy's ("babywriter2") wife can just take it out the box and use it. Or maybe keep the eMac and iMac as AIO and introduce the all new headless xMac or iServer just for us MacNN pro-sumers type that want it so bad. The debate should not be whether or not the iMac should be headless. Apple needs a headless Mac. Period. Call it iMac, iMac Express, iMac Mini, eMac, eMac Mini, xMac, iServer, PowerMac Express, iBook Pro, whatever, it just needs to be headless, upgradable, and affordable. I also generally agree that Apple should keep at least one AIO form factor Mac for those completely computer illiterate that just want to plug it in and press a button. But might I also point out that Dell and the other PC box makers have no problems with seperate monitors. People still buy them. Even first time users. You learn how to plug in a monitor or ask a friend or relative. Imagine that.
Bravo.

- b
     
IVIIVI4ck3y27
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Jul 26, 2004, 06:29 PM
 
Originally posted by mitchell_pgh:


I could see Apple not using this because it's brushed metal and would confuse the Pro/Consumer levels, but I think this would be NICE because it's also stackable.

$599
1.25GHz PowerPC G4
256MB DDR333 SDRAM
40GB Ultra ATA drive
Combo drive

$749
1.25GHz PowerPC G4
256MB DDR333 SDRAM
80GB Ultra ATA drive
SuperDrive
I like that look, but... I'd move the optical drive up in the case towards the top, because if that's sitting on a desk, it's going to need some legs so the drive door doesn't bottom out. I also think that as with most computers, the motherboard should go in the bottom of the case, and the drive door where it's at means the motherboard would have to mount on top more than likely. I also agree with a previous poster, I'd like to see a Firewire and USB port out front as well. I might have to take a stab at designing something up based off of that though, as it looks pretty sharp and it's about what I'd want.

Personally, I'd prefer a single-processor G5, 1 AGP slot or maybe PCI-X if they use a PCI-X based video card (or even soldered-in, I don't care... only reason I have a Radeon 7000 in my 9600 was so I could jerry rig it to run OS X; otherwise the iXMicro card was suitable to my needs, believe it or not; if OS X would've supported the Twin Turbo I'd not upgraded the video), and call it a day. If Apple elects to sell a new iMac as they're going with, slip that motherboard in a slimline case with adequate ventilation (doesn't have to be so slim there's not room for ventilation and/or a quiet fan) and stick an external video connector out the back, a USB 2 and Firewire port out the front, and be done. Hell I don't necessarily care if it can drive a 30" LCD, or can play Unreal Tournament at 7,000,000 frames per second as it's not my market nor interest anyhow. If it can work Core Image nicely with a single G5... I'll be all eyes and ears.

I'd like a reasonably modern video card (core image compatible, could be last gen), but it doesn't have to be bleeding edge for my tastes... hell I'm on a beige 9600 and will balk on a new iMac if the monitor is built-in. If Apple wants me on OS X quicker (as in the quicker, the better; also as-in daily), they'll hear out our concerns and address them. I don't need 3 PCI-X slots when 90% of the components I will ever want to use can be hooked up via Firewire or USB 2, if I wanted 3 PCI-X slots I'd wait longer and get a G5; that's missing the whole point and those wanting the farm should just save and get a used G5 which should sell for less than a current one, or a new G5 that's suited to your needs! I can input video, hook up drives, use extra pointing devices and printers with Bluetooth, Firewire, and USB 2. That's all one needs from a consumer desktop.

Gamers... are ::gasp:: people that spend $$$ on gaming rigs, or build them theirselves out of parts (not a Mac market option, and it won't be... get used to it; hate to say that but the idea of CHRP-based slap together Mac boxes went out the window when Amelio left the building). Alienware has made a pretty penny by doing just that, and ::gasp:: that's exactly what a G5 Mac is suited for, Pro-level editing and Gaming. It's even priced about the same as Alienware's PC rigs. ::gasp::

Here's the clue-in...

I don't want a built in 15" Apple LCD when I want a 19-20" LCD down the road when I can afford it, but also want 3 years of APP and a warranty but can't afford $1,799 *NEW* + the costs of Applecare. I have an Apple-branded 17" CRT, I plan to go LCD and might even go Apple with my purchase as they do make some of the best LCD's on the planet. Yet I'm not going to buy it attached to my machine and pay a premium for it (especially when I'd struggle on my expenses to afford the part of the machine sans monitor), and run the risk of the monitor failing and leaving me with an expensive paper weight, or a hefty bill to get it fixed.

Yeah if I find a G5 on the Apple Deals site it'd suit my needs for the $1,299 they were selling the first Gen 1.6's used at (didn't have too many as you can imagine and they didn't stick around very long)... but how many of those are liable to end up on that segment of the site when Apple's shipping Dual 1.8's? I'm waiting in someone's peril for their G5 to fail so Apple can refurb it and ship them a new comparable model via APP; which means 1) a waiting game on my part, and 2) a subject to availability scramble with other likewise individuals that'd kill for a G5 but can't afford one new, and won't buy a iMac regardless of pricetag.

Most people with Macs don't buy a new computer every 6 months. Those that are speed freaks might, but they'll likely sell their machines on eBay (at a premium) and then you have to deal with "TRUSTING" someone... which I'd rather trust a multimillion dollar company with a strong customer service background vs. some guy selling a G5 out of his garage/den/bedroom who is largely an unknown. There's a peace of mind factor there. Pure and simple.

The rest of your configs are good, and I'd prefer $999-$1,599 for the price tags for the G5 versions vs. the G4; which they could do with a headless eMac for a lower pricerange like you've listed above. I have a 700 Mhz. G4 in my 9600, and I don't feel the costs of upgrading to a headless eMac suit my needs; it's G5 or bust for me. Otherwise I'd just buy a used 450 Mhz. G4, and upgrade the processor. They're one of the more reasonable available options out there for the $, as the used QuickSilver and Windtunnel models are just insane on their pricepoints for even the Single Processor lower-end models.

I figure 1.6 Ghz. and 1.8 Ghz. G5 LC models. That'd still be enough that Apple could make good margin sales, and it'd force the industry that sells used G4's to drop the costs as an option to get stock off shelves. It's a sad, sad state of affairs when used G4's with much lesser configs. (i.e. 800 Mhz), no long-term warranty, etc. are selling for more than the *NEW* G4's from Apple's store that remain in store stock (also subject to availability, or until stock runs out and I don't have the cash at this moment to drop on them, which is why I don't have one, understand? By the time I do, they won't be there). Even a lot of the machines on eBay are ridiculous for what they're selling for when you consider there's no warranty except for DOA from most of the sellers on there! It's like throwing tons of $ away at a garage sale... electronics do have a shelf-life in majority y'know? I ante'd up for 2 years of warranty (can extend up to a total of 5) on a brand new digital camera just for that peace of mind, and would gladly do so with Apple if they had any desirable (hard)wares to sell me.

Call it the new Mac LC line. The Mac LC was one of Apple's strongest selling computer models in it's history for those with short-term memories. Apple could just drop the eMac motherboard in a casing similar to the white one (only oriented like the metal one, a pizza box on it's side; vertical optical drives perform mediocre at best and are best avoided), and call it the G4 LC, and do the same with the new iMac G5's board and call it the G5 LC, and have something either like the brushed metal or maybe even a colored metal casing similar to the iPod Mini, which is a rounder shaped casing than the Pro line of Macs, so it could slot in between in appearance. The new iMac could do the same and be a rounded metal casing and suit those that truly want an all-in-one and fit that niche/market. It'd be another model but the costs and tooling would be minimal, as you already have the architectures and components there! It's just the process of building a case around it with adequate cooling, and slapping an external connector for video on the back, and then PRICING IT RIGHT.

I hear how abysmal the Cube was... but for those that are braindead to remember, there was still this same clamoring target market back then that were unaninimously salivating at a headless low-cost desktop, and they were greeted with a headless desktop that seemingly forgot the "low-cost" aspect. The Cube was novel, but it wasn't practical or logical. It answered a lot of questions noone asked for, and was a Bang and Oluffsen-style component that is dealing with a market that has too much mass rotation of componentry and upgrade needs, whether people upgrade them or not. It's moot. They won't buy them if they can't, even if they won't. It's a Catch-22 but one that bit Steve Jobs in the proverbial tush when it failed. I liked the Cube, but immediately ante'd up that it needed to cost around $999-$1,199 rather than the bloated cost it shipped at. A few extra inches in size, a little less over-engineering, and it could've been the next LC (low cost) success story in Apple's history rather than an abysmal failure.

I've upgraded the heck out of my 9600, and I got it for a paltry sum and that's the only reason I "LUCKED" into it, as I would likely be using an 8500 still if I'd not came across this. Yet at this juncture, the same questions are there and we're poised to see Apple ignore them again by providing something that didn't sell well enough in it's last generation to really clue you in as to what the real crux of the matter is.

If I want an LCD, I want to plug it into the back of my desktop, not have it floating or embedded into my desktop. I want a low cost consumer desktop, not a miniaturized fetish item that costs as much or more than a dual processor G5 but is sized like a box of Puff's tissue. The Cube was attractive, novel, and amazing... but it was engineered to the point of costing too much and providing too little, and computers are for USAGE first and foremost, not just something to look at and marvel over. Yes it was an amazing feat... but it didn't suit people's needs well enough compared to a full-on tower for the $, and it didn't sell. Funny though, the LC sold in droves when other all-in-one form factor Macs... didn't. ::scratching chin:: Interesting, eh? It was priced for what the market wanted, maybe not quite enough as it could've probably sold even better (imagine that?)... but I'm not against Apple turning larger profit margins as it doesn't have them bleeding red to sell like other vendors have undercut each other ruthlessly and crippled each other over. I am a reasonable human being, and I don't feel that what I'm asking for is unreasonable at all, nor do I think it would hinder the product nor the Apple experience any, as I'm not expecting them to ship with junky parts.

I just want a product in my market to sell so the used chain of G4's get sold for what they're worth, not for bloated pricetags that they're not worth when you're buying a used product with a limited warranty. Cars depreciate... but even used Macs hit unusable status long before they're priced at an unusable product's pricepoint, as in $50 worth of 33mhz. Motorola 680x0 paper weight on your desk. For some that's still marginally usable (though slowwwwwwww), but for most it's out of date for most people's needs and should be priced around the tag of a $15-20 Pentium 100-166.

There's done, and there's done right. If Apple does the consumer desktop right, it will sell right. If they don't... it won't, monitor attached or not. The last gen iMac wasn't near as successful as the first gen CRT models were, no matter how novel or unique it was, it was just awkward looking and didn't meet the people's needs like a general purpose desktop does. Funny, granted eMachines are buckets of parts... but they sell well, and they don't try to be anything radical. Apple could attach a margin to a consumer desktop, as I could see the eMac board with a faster video chipset soldered in at almost the price of a current eMac ($699-899-ish; Superdrive being an option that boosts it to $899), and see it selling well. It'd be more expensive than a $399-499 PC, but that's the price you pay for getting a Mac. I can fathom and respect that... yet if they don't meet my needs, I'm not buying 'til I can get the machine that does. Would Apple rather like me in a new computer now? That's the question Jobs' needs to address most. If he does, and wants the $ going to him rather than Powermax or Poweron or Smalldog on a used machine vs. directly to him on a new machine, well... he knows what he's got to do, and I've apparently got a whole slough of friends that agree with me, as this discussion has been found on many a messageboard of late.
( Last edited by IVIIVI4ck3y27; Jul 26, 2004 at 06:57 PM. )
     
IVIIVI4ck3y27
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Jul 26, 2004, 08:14 PM
 
Here's my take,inspired by a cross between the iPod mini and the photo Mitchell showed of an xServe style slimline Mac. This is more in keeping with separate upper and lower brand identities; as the upper models are all silver, and they also have more of a squared-edge appeal that the Apple consumer products (iMac, eMac, iPod mini, iPod, iBook) usually have some slight rounded edges or shapes to the enclosures. You could even do a white version for the G4-based version, with the multi-hued metallic body being for the G5 based LC.



Enjoy!
     
bborofka
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Jul 26, 2004, 08:35 PM
 


PowerMac G5 Express. That's what Apple and its customers need.
     
TheDoctor
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Jul 26, 2004, 08:53 PM
 
Whatever Apple calls this thing, it HAS to be more affordable. I personally know several people who would love to go mac but who can't afford to get even an eMac. Low-cost in today's PC market means $400-$600. I recently put together a decent PC for barely over $300 and that was using quality parts. If I can do that then so can Apple.
     
Zoom
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Jul 26, 2004, 10:42 PM
 
Originally posted by mactropolis:
The very idea of a stand-alone headless Mac running OS X just drives me crazy inside.

A lot of the debate in this forum has focused on what the iMac is and isn't. I say the simplest solution is just to create an entire new brand or modify the existing brands. For example, let the eMac be the headless Mac and allow the iMac to be everyone's favorite easy-to-setup AIO so that guy's ("babywriter2") wife can just take it out the box and use it. Or maybe keep the eMac and iMac as AIO and introduce the all new headless xMac or iServer just for us MacNN pro-sumers type that want it so bad. The debate should not be whether or not the iMac should be headless. Apple needs a headless Mac. Period. Call it iMac, iMac Express, iMac Mini, eMac, eMac Mini, xMac, iServer, PowerMac Express, iBook Pro, whatever, it just needs to be headless, upgradable, and affordable. I also generally agree that Apple should keep at least one AIO form factor Mac for those completely computer illiterate that just want to plug it in and press a button. But might I also point out that Dell and the other PC box makers have no problems with seperate monitors. People still buy them. Even first time users. You learn how to plug in a monitor or ask a friend or relative. Imagine that.

And to those people who say Apple is now destined to be a premium brand, a high-end brand, a niche player, the BMW or Bose of the computer market, might I remind you of Apple's original tagline: The Computer For The Rest Of Us. Excuse me, but when did the Comptuer for the Rest Of US mean that $3000.00 is the cheapest price for a Mac that's actually upgradable. These days, the "Computer for the rest of us" obviously is Dell despite the giant bughole that is Windows XP. Yes, i know facts say 80% of people never upgrade their machines, and that probably is very true. But I can also bet that 80% of people judge upgradability as a very important factor when purchasing a system. The Apple today (computer-wise/non-iPod) is not the Apple i loved from yester-year. I think that so many years of non-growth has left Apple & Steve with a premium brand mentality. However, if Apple takes the gamble and decides to compete price-wise again (enter the low-end market), i'm sure the virtues of our Mac OS X will win World+Dog over Crap XP. How Steve expects to capture evan 5% market share at these prices is completely beyond me.

I eagerly anticipate all comments & feedback here or feel free to e-mail.
Amen!! Well said!

I've been posting to the other G5 iMac thread and decided to have a look at what's going on over here. Many of the same ideas have been floated, but I find it interesting that there are so many first-time posters to this thread. I think this is a passionate issue for all of us, and I think we all agree that we want a headless Mac even if we don't agree on whether there will be a headless Mac.

But I'm also tired of the "BMW of computers" argument, using it to explain to my friends (and potential computer buyers) why Macs cost so much. I tell them about quality, I tell them about design, I tell them about ease of use... and they just nod vaguely. All they really heard was "yeah, they're more expensive, but.... ". I lost them at that point.

Apple needs to return to that ideal, the computer for the rest of us. I also whole-heartedly agree that Apple needs a headless, entry-level Mac with a little room to grow. They need something solid in the sub-$1000 range, preferably well under $1000 for the base model.

Steve needs a new Model T or VW Beetle of computers. THAT'S what the original iMac was all about: a beautiful, simple, elegant, affordable Mac For The Masses... a VolksMac!!. It can carry a slight premium because we all know that Apple does spend a little more on this stuff than Dell, but the margins have to be thin. This 'vMac' is the thing that drives people to switch, capitalizing on the success of the iPod to lure in the people who have finally gotten fed up with Windoze. ("It's the OS, stupid.") I would have to bet that Windoze users satisfaction levels are at an all-time low. NOW is the time. The revolution will be digitized! Okay, I'm weirding out here a bit, but my point is that now is the time for a killer new entry-level Mac. Now is the time to reclaim marketshare. To do it, you need a new (headless) entry-level Mac.

I hope to God Steve's on the same page we are.
( Last edited by Zoom; Jul 27, 2004 at 08:45 AM. )
     
Zoom
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Jul 26, 2004, 11:27 PM
 
Originally posted by IVIIVI4ck3y27:
Yep. This is my vision of the new G5 iMac, too - some cross between the brushed aluminum and the white plastic look, possibly with color options. Pizza box all the way. However, I would prefer a slot-load drive.
     
kokkao
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Jul 27, 2004, 02:33 AM
 
Although I like the concept I hate the colour - unless there is 1. an iPod white option and 2. all all aluminium option.

BUT..... aren't we all a bit too late with all this ranting?? The decisions on design and specification have been made and anything we are saying now is superfluous. Production is about to begin (assuming they have cured the problems) and we aren't going to change a dicky bird. The only thing that might remain to be decided is the profit margin on the product which may give a little room for price adjustment - but not much.
     
mactropolis
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Jul 27, 2004, 03:26 AM
 
Originally posted by IVIIVI4ck3y27:




Enjoy!
Amazing Drawing!!!

I can't wait to get one of those iServer's on my desk. Why doesn't Apple understand that by selling (cheaper) CPU's separate from the monitor, it allows people to purchase their products more often. For example, i might buy that gorgeous headless iServer & use it existing CRT hanging around and then a few months->year later buy that terrific 20" Cinema Display to finish out the package. Then after that i can eBay the old iServer and purchase the newest fastest iServer while retaining my existing 20" Cinema Display.

This is what my PC-using friends do all the time. Their start off with a solid very upgradable entry level system and over the years upgrade the CPU, video card, optical drives, displays, peripheral devices, etc as finances afford. That's a lot better than putting down $1799 - $2199 for a high-end iMac and not be able to upgrade anything. I wouldn't even mind if Apple was the only vendor in the Mac upgrade-market that sold stand-alone Superdrives, etc, as long as the prices are reasonable.
( Last edited by mactropolis; Jul 27, 2004 at 03:31 AM. )
Death To Extremists!
     
IVIIVI4ck3y27
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Jul 27, 2004, 03:57 AM
 
Originally posted by Zoom:
Yep. This is my vision of the new G5 iMac, too - some cross between the brushed aluminum and the white plastic look, possibly with color options. Pizza box all the way. However, I would prefer a slot-load drive.
This wouldn't replace the iMac, just let me restate that and make it clearer. The iMac and eMac would continue to be made, it'd be imperative that they were or else the modular nature of what I was conceiving wouldn't be feasible. This would be a machine that shares their components, their motherboard and processors, adds a port for external video, and ships inside a separate casing. Pure and simple. I don't want to see Apple kill off the iMac or eMac for those applications or people that an all-in-one is preferrable to an external enclosure. I just am saying that those of that don't desire an all-in-one machine and want a more cost effective G4 or G5 machine where we have some semblance of choice, some semblance of choice on monitor sizing without falling into a processor configuration and hard drive configuration game, and are stuck with the added costs upfront... that this option above would cost very little for Apple to implement on tooling, and provide us with what we desire, and make *EVERYONE* happy including Apple when their sales increase. Lump these machines sales into desktop consumer sales... and I'd venture that the iMac, eMac, and LC G4 and G5 models would double their sales off the bat and it'd increase flexibility without costing Apple substantially. That's the whole point.

As far as frivolity...

Slot loading is an added expense, not to mention... outside of the Powerbooks, the G5 uses a tray loading as did the previous G4 iMac, no other Mac desktops *currently* use it. For the sake of cost-effectiveness, I went with a tray, and I don't trust slot-loading mechanisms vs. trays for the sake of dust and keeping it out of the internal mechanism; but to each their own. Slot loading vs. tray means nothing to me though, and as long as Apple could meet the targets I'd be all for whatever they produce because unlike some people... I'm just wanting a machine that fits my needs and not looking for a special hue of red, blue, purple, silver, or green... and if the drive uses a slot-ejecting tray and can fold into a Quisinart or serve as a cup holder too. I just want a slimline desktop that works. If it's shipped at a reasonable pricepoint (even continuing Apple's trend of healthy margins, it could still do so), works, and fills in the gap in Apple's pricing for desktops, and comes with a single processor G5 and lets me hook my 17" CRT up until I can save for a 19" or 20" LCD without having to buy a special package of stuff I don't need... HURRAY! then it's just what I am begging for. If they share parts that are readily available at Apple, the G5 right now has a tray, and that works for me. If the new iMac comes out of the gates tray loading... then go ahead and use that, and I'll make due. I'm not THAT picky. LoL

Also as noted above, I envisioned it with all of the color options of the iPod mini. That would include silver. Whether that's only on the G5 LC or not would of course remain to be seen, much as if Apple even bothers to listen to the consumers with regards to this... remains to be seen, although they're foolish if they don't. I like the idea of a G4 LC for people looking for a $500-600 starting price computer (that's with margin, if they want to go cutrate, they can ship for a starting price of $300-400 I'm sure, but I don't think it's logical nor necessary to cut margins that short), and then the G5 LC at a price of anywhere from $999 to $1,599.

I was originally conceiving the G4 LC to be all white (doesn't look right with a silver Apple monitor though, which I expect the 17" to eventually be updated or replaced), whereas the G5 LC would come in the iPod mini's colors. Silver of course is a pro-level color scheme and since this machine sort of bridges the gap, and could serve as a mini slimline workstation or SOHO server, silver would work and the rounded shape ties in with the rounded and softer consumer iPod look; so it's almost the "NEW" look of consumer if you will?

It was just a sketched out idea, applying the iPod mini's rounded shape, it's metallic surfacing (although I lean more towards the smooth silver vs. the brushed look I did, it was a texture I had around, I'd prefer the texture that was on the xServe based look, but in something shaped more like this, slot-loading or tray), and hell... you could even reverse the schemes or make it silver altogether. I don't care. LoL I'd be happy with a machine that fits this form factor, I could slide it under my monitor, or mount a shelf under my desk to slide it in, or Marathon could make a desk mount of some sort for it (likely). If it's iPod mini colored, I'd lean towards green or purple, as my desktop PC is green (Chieftec Dragon) as those are my 2 favorite colors, although to each their own. Pure and simple.

At any rate... the coloring goes with Apple's monitors, as silver + color goes well so it blends with the Pro while having a consumer-style flavor, ala the iPod/iPod mini. Apple wouldn't likely slot a machine like this as a pro machine, other than for SOHO applications, and I'd expect one config in all silver with OS X Server and perhaps options for a bigger drive.

[quote]Originally posted by kokkao:Although I like the concept I hate the colour - unless there is 1. an iPod white option and 2. all all aluminium option.[quote]

See above. It's just a sketched out idea of what one could look like, what would work best for layout, and the detailing is obviously something Johnathan Ive has a better knack for than just about any of us here, even with me taking Product Design in College I'd not venture to say I'm remotely close. LoL

That's the layout that many of us desire (slimline enclosure), it plays to Apple's roots with the LC which was similarly sized and shaped and was a popular computer in Apple's history so only logical to play off of it.

If sold at the right pricepoint it'd not make the same blunders that the Cube made by being overengineered for a task to where it did dismal as a result because it cost too much to manufacture to meet it's desired clientele, and had minimal clientele that wanted a computer as a fetish item. It's not going to be the computer for everyone, that's why there's a G5 with 3 PCI-X slots, current video, current processor technology, and the like. The rationale behind this is you have to cut costs to reach that point on margins to where you can ship a machine that serves it's function well without bleeding into another sector, i.e. the Pro range. You can't strap PCI-X slots on, because the iMac won't have them, nor will the eMac. It's not a gamers PC, it can play some games, but it won't be bleeding edge. Anyone that wants bleeding edge...

--> G5 desktop <--

Anyone wanting a usable consumer and SOHO server that is small enough to put out of the way, is upgradable with off the shelf components that work in an iMac or eMac, and can add peripherals on, input video in via Firewire (iLink/IEEE 1394x), USB2, and can attach peripherals via both device standards...

--> G4 or G5 LC <--

A 2 pronged approach to a desktop that cuts the umbilical cord with the built in monitor, giving freedom so you can buy a lesser configured machine in terms of processor/RAM/hard disk, and get a monitor of your choice later. Either that... or get the most out of the machine right now, and get the most out of a monitor later while using the CRT or LCD you currently have now 'til you can afford a new one.

That's the point.

BUT..... aren't we all a bit too late with all this ranting?? The decisions on design and specification have been made and anything we are saying now is superfluous. Production is about to begin (assuming they have cured the problems) and we aren't going to change a dicky bird. The only thing that might remain to be decided is the profit margin on the product which may give a little room for price adjustment - but not much.
Unless Armageddon hits, no.

Seriously, if you'd read what I'd posted prior, I'm not wanting to kill off the eMac or iMac, and they would retain their separate model designations and markets and would likely be developed *AND SHIPPED* first as this is a modular approach that cannibalizes what comes in them and the G5 to meet our demands. Apple could show a all-in-one slot-loading LCD iMac G5 tomorrow and it means *NOTHING* against what I said prior, other than that we might have an option to stuff a slot-loading drive in the front of a machine like the above if it's cheap enough (I'd go without tray-loading if it saves $, and I prefer it as I feel it keeps dust out, but I'd settle with either/or). That being... take the internals of the *NEW* iMac, and the current eMac, design a case to hold them, and add a VGA/DVI port out the back. Pure and simple. I'm working off of the guts of either of these machines as the base, which cuts tooling because you'd not be using an all new architecture for this piece of hardware. Whatever connector that goes out to the iMac LCD or eMac CRT I'm sure can surely be converted into a standardized DVI/VGA output connector for external CRT/LCD usage and can stick out the back of the casing. The rest of the iMac and eMac ports are already there, Firewire 400/800 and USB/USB2 depending on machine and configuration (G4 would be 400/USB, G5? Whatever the iMac will have). If you make the case have enough room inside, it'll have adequate ventilation especially with not having the heat from the LCD or CRT to deal with, and they can even add a fan if necessary. Noise isn't a huuuuuuuuuuge issue although the quieter, the better... but I'd settle for fans if it meant having one of these.

That's the point. What color it comes in... whether the drive is slot loading, or the orientation of the ports on the front and which port comes first, Firewire or USB... I could care less. LoL I just was giving a rough idea. For 20-30 minutes of work, it didn't come out too bad. I'm sure I could go wilder with it or take the time out to meet everyone's demands with it's layout/design but it served the purpose.
     
Zoom
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Jul 27, 2004, 08:44 AM
 
I'll take back the slot-loaded drive, a tray is fine... IF that means I can replace the optical drive! I could see getting the low-end drive and replacing it with a new 16x dual-layer SuperDrive! (Of course, if Apple would go ahead and include that as an option, that would save me the trouble.)

I think we're in violent agreement here, folks. We all want this, we're just bickering about form factor, price, and marketing concepts. And sure, it's somewhat pointless because whatever this new iMac will be has already been decided. But you can still debate the life expectancy of Schrodinger's cat all day long, because until you open the container, you just don't know. And it's fun.

I'm trying not to get my hopes up, but it's hard. Unless this thing is too expensive, I'm buying one as soon as it's announced. I know exactly what I want, and if this thing ends up being something totally weird or way too expense, I'm going to be really disappointed.
     
OB1
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Jul 27, 2004, 01:14 PM
 
Originally posted by bborofka:


PowerMac G5 Express.
I want that.

I wished for a 12" G4 Powerbook and that came true
tin pot, garden shed
     
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Jul 27, 2004, 02:29 PM
 
Originally posted by bborofka:


PowerMac G5 Express. That's what Apple and its customers need.
Lose the handles and I'd consider buying it. Honestly, though, I want the pizza box - something to sit under the monitor, not next to it or on the floor or behind it.

Check out this analysis I did in another thread. There is so much wasted space in the current PM case. These PM towers are enormous, and the handles contribute greatly to the overall wasted volume. Have you seen those things in person?
     
mitchell_pgh
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Jul 28, 2004, 08:34 AM
 
I guess I'm the only one that really thinks the G5 "mini" is UGLY. The think I love most about the G5 enclosure is the long sleek lines.

The G5 mini looks like it's been simply crushed.
     
mitchell_pgh
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Jul 28, 2004, 10:15 AM
 
Just an idea to spark conversation:





The idea being:
1) Less wires

2) Perfect backup solution (again, without wires)

3) Links this mini Mac to the iPod to iTunes Music Store

4) I could see these marketed to schools where the students get iPods and the computers basically have nothing on them (or won't permit you to change ANYTHING) and you must save all of your work on the iPods.

4) Interchangeable slip over converter so it works with the iPod and iPod mini

The real negatives is that the iPod won't last nearly as long as the computer and it would lock Apple in to few variations of the plug configuration.

Apple would get a bunch of "Oh, I don't want that computer because I don't want an iPod." (even if we all knew an iPod wasn't required).

The white plastic doesn't have an Apple designed monitor that would go along with it.

Airflow would be an issue with this design.

I don't necessarily love the tie in to the iPod, but if it gets what I want... I'm cool with it.
     
mitchell_pgh
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Jul 28, 2004, 10:48 AM
 
NOTE: Apple should make it large enough to house a 2nd HD, along with dual video support.

$999*
1.25GHz PowerPC G4
256MB DDR333 SDRAM
40GB Ultra ATA drive
Combo drive
20GB iPod (included)
(* $699 without iPod)

$1199*
1.25GHz PowerPC G4
256MB DDR333 SDRAM
80GB Ultra ATA drive
SuperDrive
20GB iPod (included)

*$899 without iPod
     
OB1
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Jul 28, 2004, 10:57 AM
 
I want that too! Although I'm not at all convinced by your iPod dock idea, I think that could turn away as many people as it attracts...

If we do see a "headless" iMac it's more likely to look something like this than a "crushed PowerMac". Although I thought that was pretty cool too.

I could definitely find space under my desk for one of those.
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Jul 28, 2004, 11:03 AM
 
Ooops, double post. Sorry.
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hmurchison2001
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Jul 28, 2004, 01:58 PM
 
People I've seen this over an over. The hype...the hope of headless Macs runs strong in some people. I think you should know that it isn't going happen. Apple has always had AIO available and I don't expect the iMac3 to be headless.

I've sold a lot of Macs in my years and some people "do" want to keep their previous monitors but this is far more rare than what many of you portray. Many people looking for a new computer 'system" are looking to upgrade most of their stuff. Don't you think Apple realizes this? I've heard people planning to keep their previous monitor say "uh..my monitor doesn't match my new Mac". There is a certain synergy in having the monitor and base match.

What this really boils down to is "me me me". Headless Macs are appealing to those who want to compute for the lowest amount of dollars thus they are concerned strictly with their own finances. Apple is the same..they have their finances to think about. That's business, the goal is to have a deal that is mutally beneficial. Headless Macs really aren't beneficial to Apple. Don't give me BS about increased Marketshare. That's your poor hypothesis made to support your weak arguement.

One gentleman even said "Apple is on the verge of pricing themselve out of business"

WTF?

Did someone just piss on my leg and tell me it's raining? Apple "just" announced a Q3 profit of 61 million dollars and excellenct powerbook sales. But you must remember when dealing with these "Headless Zealots" that logic flies out the window.

Apple is going to keep the iMac as it has always been. All in One with a great "out of box experience". I think they learned from the iMac2 that they need a bit more than just external appearances power is needed too and with a G5 coming they should be fine in that department.

Folks I know you want a headless computer but it's just a dream. I know many of you will be on these boards the first week of Sept in rage. You've been warned over an over to "hope for the best but plan for the worst".

Headless is not coming.
http://hmurchison.blogspot.com/ highly opinionated ramblings free of charge :)
     
Evan_11
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Jul 28, 2004, 01:58 PM
 
Originally posted by mitchell_pgh:
NOTE: Apple should make it large enough to house a 2nd HD, along with dual video support.

$1199*
1.25GHz PowerPC G4
256MB DDR333 SDRAM
80GB Ultra ATA drive
SuperDrive
20GB iPod (included)

*$899 without iPod
Hmm. I was belittled in a previous thread about a similar feature set.

Yeah but I would downgrade it to an included iPod mini. Anodized aluminum shell (to match the mini of course) and in a variety of colors. You can shoot me but I'd also like to see integrated speakers that are decent enough that you would not need to upgrade and a built in keyboard tray so you could slide it away when you don't want it taking up space. Specifically target the market that is buying the mini: women. I know not many here

Seriously though, hardware is not the problem. It's the software. Safari is far from being 100% compatible. Everyday there are dozens of sites that Safari has some sort of problem loading content. Don't argue with me here. Plug-ins should be a non-issue.
     
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Jul 28, 2004, 02:26 PM
 
Originally posted by mitchell_pgh:
Just an idea to spark conversation:
I think this is the wave of the future, but I don't know that it's here yet. Your "home directory" follows you. You plug in to any available computer and have access to all your prefs, settings, PIM data, files, etc. I'm surprised Apple hasn't done some form of this yet with the iPod. With the popularity of the keychain "hard drives" (pen drives, thumb drives, whatever), you could do a lot of this now. I imagine a near future where people where these things as jewelry, they contain maybe 2-4GB of space, and it has all your stuff on it - encrypted, of course. They become fashion things. You plug into a computer, and like a car key fob today that remembers your radio/mirror/seat/temp settings, the PC is now personalized to you.
( Last edited by Zoom; Jul 28, 2004 at 03:04 PM. )
     
 
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