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Posts Tagged ‘mac mini’

Apple releases new iMacs, Mac Mini, Macbook and Magic Mouse

October 20, 2009 Leave a comment

As was widely predicted this morning, Apple has updated its iMac, Mac Mini and Macbook ranges. Also new is the Magic Mouse, described as ‘the world’s first Multi-Touch mouse’. The new products feature:

iMac

  • 21.5 or 27 inch LED backlit glossy display
  • 3.06/3.33GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor or 2.66GHz quad-core Intel Core i5 processor or 2.8GHz quad-core Intel Core i7 processor
  • 4GB of 1066MHz DDR3 SDRAM with four SO-DIMM slots supporting up to 16GB
  • 256MB NVIDIA GeForce 9400M or 256MB ATI Radeon HD 4670 (21.5 inch model)
  • 256MB ATI Radeon HD 4670 or 512MB ATI Radeon HD 4850 (27 inch model)
  • 802.11n Wi-Fi wireless networking, Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR and 10/100/Gigabit Ethernet
  • Slot-loading 8x SuperDrive
  • 1 or 2TB 7200-rpm Serial ATA hard drive
  • From £949

Mac Mini

  • 2.26GHz, 2.53GHz, or 2.66GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor with 1066MHz frontside bus
  • 2GB or 4GB of 1066MHz DDR3 SDRAM
  • NVIDIA GeForce 9400M graphics processor with 256MB of shared DDR3 SDRAM
  • 160GB, 320GB, or 500GB Serial ATA hard disk drive
  • From £499
  • Also available with two 500GB SATA hard drives and Snow Leopard Server for £799

Macbook

  • 13.3-inch LED-backlit glossy widescreen display with support for millions of colours
  • 2.26GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor with 1066MHz frontside bus
  • 2GB of 1066MHz DDR3 SDRAM with support up to 4GB
  • NVIDIA GeForce 9400M with 256MB of DDR3 SDRAM shared with main memory
  • 250, 320 or 500GB 5400-rpm Serial ATA hard disk drive
  • 8x slot-loading SuperDrive
  • New Unibody enclosure
  • Up to 7 hour battery life
  • £799

Magic Mouse

Magic_MouseA new design with no buttons. Instead, the whole top of the mouse is a multi-touch surface that responds like the trackpad in the Macbook/Pro’s. Not cheap at £55 but certainly cutting edge.

Overall it’s a very strong line-up for the Christmas Market. I’m a bit surprised the Macbook is still just a single model at £799 but Apple have never been interested in the budget market. The iMacs now go from fast to ridiculously powerful, and while the 1920×1080 HD resolution screen appears to be becoming a standard, the 27 inch version offers an enormous 2560 by 1440 pixels. The Mac Mini is still expensive now has the server model leaked earlier this year. Could this become the perfect small office server?

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The entry level Macintosh

March 7, 2009 2 comments

Apple updated it’s non-laptop hardware this week, and the one thing that really struck me was the UK Mac Mini pricing. In January 2005 I bought a 1.42Ghz Mac Mini G4 from the Apple UK store for £441. At the time this was a good spec with 512Mb of ram and an 80Gb hard drive. The top Mac Mini model in March 2009 is now £649. Hardly an entry level computer any more.

The spec is greatly improved, but nowhere near current average desktop specs. The lower Mac Mini model has the same processor and less Ram/Hard drive space for £500. A catalog from Dell turned up in the post this week, and for £400 I could buy a mini tower with a Core2Duo E7400, 2Gb Ram, 250Gb Hard Drive, DVDrw and a 19″ widescreen monitor. Thats a lot of computer for the price. While I understand the exchange rate is not favourable in the UK at the moment, how does Apple expect to sell at these prices? Apart from the size and software I can’t see what the Mac Mini can offer at the moment. And why does it still look the same as three years ago?

Categories: apple, computer Tags: , ,

Macworld 09 Keynote predictions

January 5, 2009 Leave a comment

macworldexpo_logoAs I write there are less than 24 hours to the Macworld keynote, due to start at 9am in San Francisco (which should be 5pm in London). The usual speculation has been building for the past couple of months, so here is a round up of predictions and guesses along with a few of my own.

  • A Major Mac Mini update is pretty much certain, with every Mac news source predicting new models. Given the current financial slump it would come as no surprise if Apple shift focus to the cheaper end of the market. TUAW have some details of SATA optical drives (or second hard drives) and a new time capsule style case,  and Appleinsider is claiming dual display ports and Firewire 800. An Nvidia chipset is also expected, as is support for 4Gb of ram. That’s starting to sound like a great home/small business server, so I’m predicting some new software to allow easy configuration either now or in Snow Leopard.
  • The 17 inch Macbook Pro update was promised soon when the rest of the range went to the Unibody case, so this will likely be unveiled. 9to5mac claims the new model will feature a non-removable high capacity battery, and AppleInsider has confirmed this. That’s bound to cause a stir, given the fuss over the fixed battery in the iPhone and iPod Touch.
  • iWork is rumoured to making the move online, possibly to become part of MobileMe’s online services. I don’t think the local versions will be abandoned, as internet access may be getting faster but it still slows down during peak hours and occasionally falls over.
  • iMovie is also predicted to move to an online app, offering video editing to those not using Macs. The biggest problem with this is the time taken to upload the raw footage for editing, and we ar all being pushed to go HD. My Canon HF100 needs a huge amount of space to store it’s AVCHD movies in Apple’s intermediate format, and who wants to wait a few hours before you can start editing? I would expect a new desktop version of iMovie with greater online integration and possibly an online version for Standard definition video. Maybe a new iPhone video recording app to tie in with this?
  • Macbook mini. Netbook. Applebook. Whatever it ends up being called, the netbook market is one of the few areas of IT growth at the moment, so Apple is likely to release a sub-compact portable at some time this year. TechRadar is predicting a 7-9 inch iPod Touch/iPhone style tablet for later this year and I suspect they are spot on. A nine inch Mac tablet with virtual keyboard running Snow Leopard from 64Gb of flash memory or a 1.8 inch hard drive sounds like an Apple product that would fly off the shelves. Apple would wait for dual core atom processors for better performance, and build in a 3G modem for mobile net access.
  • The iPhone mini is one product I can’t see being announced yet, due to the effect this could have on iPhone 3G sales. Much more likely to be saved for the WWDC if it arrives at all. I’m thinking this is a non- starter, Apple don’t make budget products, and why hamper the iPhone experience with a smaller screen?

That’s my predictions done, come back in 24 hours to see how close they are. Or even better, leave your own predictions in the comments.

Apple: “key product transition” due within 2 months

July 22, 2008 Leave a comment

Yesterday’s Apple quarterly financial results sounded much like the previous few. Best yet results for the quarter, with sales of just about everything up considerably from this time last year. At a time when the credit crunch is having a negative impact on most markets Apple is seeing record growth.

One thing to put a damper on shareholders dividends is the announcement that profits will be lower next quarter due to a ‘key product transition’ that undercuts rivals, due by the end of September. No details on what the new product will be, but with the Macbook, iPod Touch and Mac Mini rumoured to be expecting an update there’s plenty to pick from. That’s without the possibility of a Mac tablet or ‘bigger than iPod Touch’ PDA/handheld device. Looks like interesting times are ahead.

Who makes my next Computer?

January 27, 2008 2 comments

hackintoshIt’s the time of year when I take a look at my computer and ask if I want to upgrade anything. My Macbook (first generation 1.83Ghz) has been fairly solid for the year and a half since I got it. Sudden shutdowns were the biggest problem, and after six weeks of use it was off to Apple for a mystery repair. Apple said they replaced a cable and a bracket but the machine came back with a different hard drive as well. Around six months ago the dying battery was replaced for free, but then half the world seems to have suffered from defective batteries.
The source of this latest round of upgrade angst is Geekbench. It’s a processor benchmarking program that lets you compare processor performance in any supported operating system. I tested the VideoPC (Windows XP, Dual Xeon 2.4Ghz) and got a result of 1560. The Macbook was a surprise (Mac OS 10.5.1, Core Duo 1.83Ghz) returning 2304. I still use the VideoPC for a range of video editing tasks, but it’s a noisy power hungry beast. If the Macbook is 50% faster I would be better served moving all my work to the Macbook. especially since UK energy prices are going through the roof.
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Apple Keynote 2008 opinions

January 15, 2008 1 comment

Lets get the big rant out of the way first.

20 DOLLARS TO UPGRADE THE IPOD TOUCH WITH FIVE APPS ALREADY AVAILABLE ON THE IPHONE AND EVERY JAILBROKEN TOUCH IS A JOKE.

Normal non-shouty blog resumes. I can understand the Mail, Maps, Stocks, Notes and Weather apps not being on the original iPod touch. It was an iPod, so did what the previous iPod did when it came to PIM. Not being able to add calendar events was a mistake that was rectified. But this is just taking the piss. All the early adopters that helped make the Christmas quarter such a huge success get shafted. Buy an iPod touch today and get the software for free. How can the company which styles itself as the cool guy fighting Microsoft’s corporation crap on its users like this? Leaves an unpleasant taste after all the other good things that were announced.

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