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Apple warns of near-term iMac, Mac mini constraints

post #1 of 137
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Apple this week began informing its direct sales channels that several of its desktop-based Mac offerings have entered a period of constraint, further hinting that Mac hardware updates are on the horizon. [Updated with additional info on Mac mini.]

For example, Apple Retail on Monday issued an advisory to its stateside brick-and-mortar shops in which it noted that further orders for many of its existing desktop SKUs would go unhonored and that stores should not expect those models to be restocked.

More specifically, the Mac maker made the remarks in respect to all four retail configurations of its all-in-one aluminum iMac line and the low-end $599 Mac mini, which sports half the memory and roughly one-third the storage capacity of its pricier cousin.

Word of the restrictions arrive on the heels of several reports from AppleInsider's indicating that the Cupertino-based company is preparing to unveil the first makeover to its iMac (1, 2) and MacBook (1, 2) product families since the 2007 and 2006 calendar years, respectively.

Given Apple's penchant for favoring its direct channels with product inventory over those of its partners, the move implies that production of the aforementioned iMac and Mac mini models has ceased completely. Up until this week, Apple retail stores have continued to facilitate sales of those models while many resellers could not.

For instance, Amazon.com, one of the company's largest authorized Mac dealers, ran out of all four iMac configurations and both Mac mini configurations earlier this month and has shown no signs that a restocking is in order.

Although the reseller continues to list availability of the four current iMac models and two Mac mini models, its website indicates that orders for those systems won't be filled from its own inventory, but from those of partners like J&R Music and Computer Word, DataVision, Techno Intelligence, and PowerMax.

While AppleInsider has been fairly vocal over the past few months regarding Apple's plans to refresh its iMac and plastic MacBook offerings, little attention has been given to the diminutive Mac mini line. That said, it has received a handful of reports to suggest those updates may be quietly accompanied by more modest refreshes to the Mac mini line consisting primarily of component and CPU upgrades.

Update: We've received some additional confirmation that the low-end Mac mini SKU has indeed been discontinued. Volume partners wishing to place orders are being told that availability should improve in the next few weeks.

For more on Apple's upcoming Mac hardware announcements see:

Apple ready and waiting with redesigned iMac line

Apple close to unveiling all-new MacBook line

Apple to retain, redesign plastic MacBook family

Apple's next iMacs rumored with compelling new features

Apple may extend antiglare display option to more Macs

Briefly: more affordable iMacs from Apple expected by fall

Apple to introduce more affordable Macs, sources say
post #2 of 137
Keeping them crossed that the mini gets a little optional Blu-Ray loving and a some cpu bumps.
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post #3 of 137
Fantastic. I've waited a few months because I figured an update was on the horizon. Supplies of the current iMacs drying up would appear to suggest it's imminent. Hoping for some good price cuts. The old models were a little too steep for the hardware inside them.
post #4 of 137
Typical refresh signs. Can't wait to see what they have up their sleeves.
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post #5 of 137
Quote:
Originally Posted by OO9 Lives View Post

Fantastic. I've waited a few months because I figured an update was on the horizon. Supplies of the current iMacs drying up would appear to suggest it's imminent. Hoping for some good price cuts. The old models were a little too steep for the hardware inside them.

Sure was hoping that today would be the day for the announcements (and that they'd be in stock today)... need a new iMac and tho I just spent my iMac money on a new home theater system, the credit card could hold me for a month till my funds get replenished
post #6 of 137
My brain is telling me to get the new iMac (which I'd love in a size larger than 24"), but my wallet is telling me its a no go
post #7 of 137
but I want to say that I would have a REALLY hard time not pulling out the credit card for a mac mini with HDMI and blu ray...
post #8 of 137
Quote:
it availability of the four current iMac models and two Mac mini models, its website indicates that orders for those systems won't be filled from its own inventory, but from those of partners like J&R Music and Computer Word, DataVision, Techno Intelligence, and PowerMax.

yes it will be, if you are willing to wait (and know how to order from Amazon)
obviously not this model but you will be able to get the new one and avoid paying sales tax and s/h.
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg...=ATVPDKIKX0DER
post #9 of 137
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigdaddyp View Post

Keeping them crossed that the mini gets a little optional Blu-Ray loving and a some cpu bumps.

Hopefully blood flow to your fingers won't be cut off from you holding them in that position for so long.
post #10 of 137
The Mini was "just" updated in March after such a long time of stagnation.

I'd be very curious if this was a speedbump or an architectural change. The former would be fun (and make me feel less bad about buying a March 09 Mini). The latter would make my jaw drop.
post #11 of 137
At one point I was debating whether to go with a newer mini or a Macbook Pro. Now I'm thinking why not both. For the cost of a larger MacBook Pro I can buy both and end up with a nice arrangement, i.e. a decent desktop and a convenient portable form factor.

I currently have a 1.83 Ghz mini with a gig of RAM. It's a decent computer but one that has a tough time handling my HD video files. Just going to around 4gigs of RAM and to the 9400M GPU would mean a significant improvement. If Apple,hopefully, comes through with a significantly more powerful CPU (even the 2.53 from the pro line would do the trick) I believe the Mini could be a machine powerful enough to handle HD which means powerful enough for my needs for many years to come. Combine that with a 13" Macbook Pro with similar capabilities and I'm where I want to be all around.
post #12 of 137
Quote:
Originally Posted by DKWalsh4 View Post

My brain is telling me to get the new iMac (which I'd love in a size larger than 24"), but my wallet is telling me its a no go

Listen to your brain! Gather up some stuff you can do without and get selling on ebay. Cut down on the Latte's for a few weeks, buy cheaper (and less) beer, and in no time you'll be back to normal except with a shiny new iMac. Some things can't be justified or rationalized, they just need to get done.
post #13 of 137
Tomorrow? Please! I don't know if I can tolerate my dying Dell 2407WFP any longer!
post #14 of 137
Quote:
Originally Posted by Carmissimo View Post

I currently have a 1.83 Ghz mini with a gig of RAM. It's a decent computer but one that has a tough time handling my HD video files. Just going to around 4gigs of RAM and to the 9400M GPU would mean a significant improvement. If Apple,hopefully, comes through with a significantly more powerful CPU (even the 2.53 from the pro line would do the trick) I believe the Mini could be a machine powerful enough to handle HD which means powerful enough for my needs for many years to come.

Apple isn't going to stick a Xeon processor in Mac mini. Heck, the processor's heatsink wouldn't even fit inside the mini's case.

Apple is all about "green computing" for the Mac mini: it's a low power computer.

If you're lucky, you might see the new quad-core Core i7 mobile processor (45nm technology) in the Mac mini or iMac, but if you think you're going to see a MacPro CPU in the mini, don't hold your breath.
post #15 of 137
Matte options PLEASE dear Apple!

Large, glare prone Mac's screens are NOT pleasant to use for long.

I spend more time looking at myself and everything behind me, than what I need to be using the computer for.


For those who like reflective screens, good for you! Matte folks just want a choice of either, without having to resort to patching on some ugly piece of sh*t Dell monitor onto their Mac or some yellowing anti-glare screen.

MATTE CAN BE COOL!

LOOK! SOLD OUT AT $6000 a POP!

http://www.colorwarepc.com/p-183-ste...cbook-pro.aspx


Thank you Apple!
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post #16 of 137
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gadgetoid View Post

Tomorrow? Please! I don't know if I can tolerate my dying Dell 2407WFP any longer!

I very much expect a media event for this, so I think we are looking at at least a week or 2 out.
post #17 of 137
Quote:
Originally Posted by MacTripper View Post

Matte options PLEASE dear Apple!

Large, glare prone Mac's screens are NOT pleasant to use for long.

I spend more time looking at myself and everything behind me, than what I need to be using the computer for.

Agreed. Though the glossy screen on my iMac (late '07 24") hasn't been a problem, I prefer the matte screen of the 20" Cinema display I have hooked up as a 2nd monitor. While they're at it, make a matte version of the 24" LED Cinema display as well.
post #18 of 137
Quote:
Originally Posted by paxman View Post

Listen to your brain! Gather up some stuff you can do without and get selling on ebay. Cut down on the Latte's for a few weeks, buy cheaper (and less) beer, and in no time you'll be back to normal except with a shiny new iMac. Some things can't be justified or rationalized, they just need to get done.

Yes I know...I have a feeling these will be a knock out as usual. I'll read articles about them, fall in love with it. Then I'll take a trip to my local Apple store and use one. Once I use one I won't have any choice but to get it.


*goes to look what the resale value is for a 3.06 GHz 24" iMac, 500 GB HD, 4GB RAM*
post #19 of 137
Quote:
Originally Posted by vandil View Post

The Mini was "just" updated in March after such a long time of stagnation.

I'd be very curious if this was a speedbump or an architectural change. The former would be fun (and make me feel less bad about buying a March 09 Mini). The latter would make my jaw drop.

And here I thought I was safe buying a new mini in June since they were just updated in March. Oh well.... The only thing that would make me wish I had waited is if they add blu-ray.

Maybe they'll add audio to the DisplayPort connector on all of their computers?
post #20 of 137
Typically, how long from these notices before an announcement is made? 1 week, 2 weeks?
post #21 of 137
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wiggin View Post

And here I thought I was safe buying a new mini in June since they were just updated in March. Oh well.... The only thing that would make me wish I had waited is if they add blu-ray.

Maybe they'll add audio to the DisplayPort connector on all of their computers?

It would make the Mini a great HTPC. It makes an ok one now but BD-Rom would be icing on the cake and it would let me ditch one of the few Windows PC's I have left at home.
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post #22 of 137
Quote:
Originally Posted by paxman View Post

Listen to your brain! Gather up some stuff you can do without and get selling on ebay. Cut down on the Latte's for a few weeks, buy cheaper (and less) beer, and in no time you'll be back to normal except with a shiny new iMac. Some things can't be justified or rationalized, they just need to get done.


Exactly, save money on the little things so one can buy the NEXT BIG THING that saves one money.

There are tons of products and services out there designed to suck one dry with monthly costs.

For instance, the iPhone for me doesn't justify it's $80 a month, as my $15 a month phone gets the same AT&T service. I have a MacBook Pro that gets me most of the information that can be had with the iPhone. Since I am within wifi most of the time, with $20 a month broadband, it makes more economic sense.

Of course if I was on the road or lived in a city, then small size of the iPhone and anywhere access to the internet without having to stop at a local coffee shop would be preferred provided I was making money to justify it's use.

The way I calculate it, by not getting a iPhone, I can afford to get a new MacBook Pro and a 12 megapixel camera every two years.


Why should I give my money to AT&T, when I can give it to Apple?


I see so many people who have the iPhone, but no justification for having it. Some have this "I made this mistake and now I got a high bill every month" sort of look on their faces. Some are a victim of their need to remain in super high contact with their friends and family, every little picture, every word etc. Others just want to appear cool or even snobbish.

In cities or on the road the iPhone is almost a must have. But if one is near a wifi all time, it doesn't really make a whole lot of economic sense to me. Perhaps a iPhone without the carrier contract!


Now Mac's save money and a lot of aggravation from Microsoft's incompetence inflicted "Stockholm Syndrome Effect". Mac's are a smart cost saving decision as they are reliable and secure. If someone has a Windows only program, there is either Bootcamp (comes with each Mac) or virtual solutions like VMFusion, Parallels that can run Windows on a Mac. This way one can minimal their internet use of Windows (where the malware mostly comes from) and clean any potentially infected files from others using OS X.

Laptops are better typing with than cell phones and the screens are bigger.
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post #23 of 137
Quote:
Originally Posted by mpantone View Post

Apple isn't going to stick a Xeon processor in Mac mini. Heck, the processor's heatsink wouldn't even fit inside the mini's case.

Apple is all about "green computing" for the Mac mini: it's a low power computer.

If you're lucky, you might see the new quad-core Core i7 mobile processor (45nm technology) in the Mac mini or iMac, but if you think you're going to see a MacPro CPU in the mini, don't hold your breath.

I was talking a MacBook Pro processor, not one from the pro tower.
post #24 of 137
Quote:
Originally Posted by MacTripper View Post

Of course if I was on the road or lived in a city, then small size of the iPhone and anywhere access to the internet without having to stop at a local coffee shop would be preferred provided I was making money to justify it's use.
---
I see so many people who have the iPhone, but no justification for having it. Some have this "I made this mistake and now I got a high bill every month" sort of look on their faces. Some are a victim of their need to remain in super high contact with their friends and family, every little picture, every word etc. Others just want to appear cool or even snobbish.
---
In cities or on the road the iPhone is almost a must have. But if one is near a wifi all time, it doesn't really make a whole lot of economic sense to me. Perhaps a iPhone without the carrier contract!

My iPhone is a life saver for living in a new city. GPS helps me get where I need to go and find new and useful stuff around me. Streaming radio keeps me from getting bored at work. Any time I need to know anything I reach in my pocket and in 5 minutes I'm a lot more informed. Does it justify the cost of the service? In my case probably, but it's still to expensive, and I can't wait for it to go to other carriers for competitive pricing.
post #25 of 137
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wiggin View Post

And here I thought I was safe buying a new mini in June since they were just updated in March. Oh well.... The only thing that would make me wish I had waited is if they add blu-ray.

Maybe they'll add audio to the DisplayPort connector on all of their computers?

It doesn't sound like a hardware update is coming other than maybe a minor speed bump. If Apple chooses to move its iMac line to a Core i5/i7 architecture, I could conceivably see Apple clearing its supplies of older Core 2 Duos by putting them in the mini. Aside from that, my guess would be that Apple discontinued their low end mini and will move the current higher end one into its price point ($799 down to $599) and possibly leave just a single model mini much in the same way they kept a single model of white MacBook.

The audio through DisplayPort was an intriguing idea, but one that would require a refresh to the entire Apple cinema display line for it to make sense and thus far, it doesn't appear that Apple has given any indication if a pending update to those. So it seems unlikely to me that Apple would make such an update to it's computer hardware without concurrently releasing displays that can take advantage of it.
post #26 of 137
Quote:
Originally Posted by OriginalG View Post

Typically, how long from these notices before an announcement is made? 1 week, 2 weeks?

Typical with Apple = whenever they feel like it. "Typically" the Mac Mini should have been refreshed a year earlier than it was, but we all know how that played out.

It seems like the harder we clamor for an announcement or media event, the more inclined Apple is to hold off, just to keep us palpitating, and of course this gives them free buzz. Even CNN will start talking about it before long. So, maybe if we stop publicly speculating on an hourly basis, maybe Apple will make the announcement in fear of losing the attention.

If only we could exhibit such self-control, but no, won't happen.

Personally, if Apple told their direct channels that supply should resume in about 2 weeks, then a good guess that something may have developed by then, but who the hell knows.
post #27 of 137
Give the Mac Mini an HDMI port and I would be in complete heaven! I just could never get that overscan issue all figured out. My 1.66ghz Mini needs replacing as it's not coping with the advances in HD technology
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post #28 of 137
New iMacs, Minis and Macbooks. This holiday season will be looking good for Apple.
post #29 of 137
Quote:
Originally Posted by MacTripper View Post

Exactly, save money on the little things so one can buy the NEXT BIG THING that saves one money.

There are tons of products and services out there designed to suck one dry with monthly costs.

For instance, the iPhone for me doesn't justify it's $80 a month, as my $15 a month phone gets the same AT&T service. I have a MacBook Pro that gets me most of the information that can be had with the iPhone. Since I am within wifi most of the time, with $20 a month broadband, it makes more economic sense.

Of course if I was on the road or lived in a city, then small size of the iPhone and anywhere access to the internet without having to stop at a local coffee shop would be preferred provided I was making money to justify it's use.

The way I calculate it, by not getting a iPhone, I can afford to get a new MacBook Pro and a 12 megapixel camera every two years.


Why should I give my money to AT&T, when I can give it to Apple?


I see so many people who have the iPhone, but no justification for having it. Some have this "I made this mistake and now I got a high bill every month" sort of look on their faces. Some are a victim of their need to remain in super high contact with their friends and family, every little picture, every word etc. Others just want to appear cool or even snobbish.

In cities or on the road the iPhone is almost a must have. But if one is near a wifi all time, it doesn't really make a whole lot of economic sense to me. Perhaps a iPhone without the carrier contract!


Now Mac's save money and a lot of aggravation from Microsoft's incompetence inflicted "Stockholm Syndrome Effect". Mac's are a smart cost saving decision as they are reliable and secure. If someone has a Windows only program, there is either Bootcamp (comes with each Mac) or virtual solutions like VMFusion, Parallels that can run Windows on a Mac. This way one can minimal their internet use of Windows (where the malware mostly comes from) and clean any potentially infected files from others using OS X.

Laptops are better typing with than cell phones and the screens are bigger.

Not to hijack this discussion, but the points made about the iPhine being a money suck need some rebuttal.

I use my iPhone as a stand-in for multiple other specialized devices that would cost extra:

B.iCycle a GPS cycling computer that emails my routes to me for upload to Google Earth. a standalone hardware device with wifi would be hundreds of dollars.

Cleartune a guitar tuner with all the bells and whistles of any high-end hardware guitar tuner I've ever seen and then some. It would cost at least $100 to buy an equivalent hardware box.

Airfoil Speakers Simulates the Airtunes functionality of an Airport Express (of course it requires the purchase of Airfoil to be useful, but if you use AirTunes and read AppleInsider you probably already own the Application).

MPR Radio I live in Minnesota and most of the radio I listen to (News & Alternative Music) is broadcast by Minnesota Public Radio. I get this fine over 3G or even Edge service. It's basically an FM radio as far as I'm concerned. Granted they are cheap as hell, but its one less thing to carry around.

Remote: I drive most of my media in the living room with this App. I have a Mini & AppleTV attached to my home theater system. I'm not sure if there is a proprietary remote system that can control these devices produced by a 3rd party but it definitely eliminates the need for a fancy high-end Harmony remote (even though I do keep a low end Harmony around to control the TV and actual Receiver settings).

Not to mention all of the above Apps are updated regularly which is more than I can say for most standalone boxes.

Okay, I'm done defending my iPhone bill.

Let's talk about new Minis now!

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post #30 of 137
Quote:
Originally Posted by MacTripper View Post

Exactly, save money on the little things so one can buy the NEXT BIG THING that saves one money.

There are tons of products and services out there designed to suck one dry with monthly costs.

For instance, the iPhone for me doesn't justify it's $80 a month, as my $15 a month phone gets the same AT&T service. I have a MacBook Pro that gets me most of the information that can be had with the iPhone. Since I am within wifi most of the time, with $20 a month broadband, it makes more economic sense.

Of course if I was on the road or lived in a city, then small size of the iPhone and anywhere access to the internet without having to stop at a local coffee shop would be preferred provided I was making money to justify it's use.

The way I calculate it, by not getting a iPhone, I can afford to get a new MacBook Pro and a 12 megapixel camera every two years.


Why should I give my money to AT&T, when I can give it to Apple?


I see so many people who have the iPhone, but no justification for having it. Some have this "I made this mistake and now I got a high bill every month" sort of look on their faces. Some are a victim of their need to remain in super high contact with their friends and family, every little picture, every word etc. Others just want to appear cool or even snobbish.

In cities or on the road the iPhone is almost a must have. But if one is near a wifi all time, it doesn't really make a whole lot of economic sense to me. Perhaps a iPhone without the carrier contract!


Now Mac's save money and a lot of aggravation from Microsoft's incompetence inflicted "Stockholm Syndrome Effect". Mac's are a smart cost saving decision as they are reliable and secure. If someone has a Windows only program, there is either Bootcamp (comes with each Mac) or virtual solutions like VMFusion, Parallels that can run Windows on a Mac. This way one can minimal their internet use of Windows (where the malware mostly comes from) and clean any potentially infected files from others using OS X.

Laptops are better typing with than cell phones and the screens are bigger.

You sound like you're trying to convince yourself.
post #31 of 137
Quote:
Originally Posted by vandil View Post

The Mini was "just" updated in March after such a long time of stagnation.

I'd be very curious if this was a speedbump or an architectural change. The former would be fun (and make me feel less bad about buying a March 09 Mini). The latter would make my jaw drop.

Looking at my Centris 650, the PowerMac G3 (B&W), and now my March 09 Mini I can second that.

However I would hope they update the AppleTV. The Mini is ok for 6 more months, but the AppleTV is really in a need for an update.
post #32 of 137
Quote:
Originally Posted by iphonedeveloperthailand View Post

Typical refresh signs. Can't wait to see what they have up their sleeves.

More than a iMac refresh, this is a total makover, baby!!
post #33 of 137
Quote:
Originally Posted by polvadis View Post

Give the Mac Mini an HDMI port and I would be in complete heaven! I just could never get that overscan issue all figured out. My 1.66ghz Mini needs replacing as it's not coping with the advances in HD technology

Give the MacMini HDMI with blu-ray optional and kill the environmentally unfriendly, bastard step-child of Apple,
that iTunes Digital Jukebox, the AppleTV.
post #34 of 137
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob55 View Post

Agreed. Though the glossy screen on my iMac (late '07 24") hasn't been a problem, I prefer the matte screen of the 20" Cinema display I have hooked up as a 2nd monitor. While they're at it, make a matte version of the 24" LED Cinema display as well.

But that would take away their glass component which enables a higher environmental rating by the super efficient biodegradability of glass as added to the total mass of the product manufactured. Take the sheet of glass away and they become less "green" friendly.
post #35 of 137
Quote:
Originally Posted by teckstud View Post

Give the MacMini HDMI with blu-ray optional and kill the environmentally unfriendly, bastard step-child of Apple,
that iTunes Digital Jukebox, the AppleTV.

Second that. Put the AppleTV FrontRow features in the FrontRow app the rest of the line uses.
The Mac mini is really the platform to use for an HTPC platform if an Apple product is going to be used. iTunes home sharing makes syncing and using content between a home-office system and an HTPC easy. Open up FrontRow so that plug-ins for the likes of MythTV, eyeTV, etc. can easily be added and you've got full DVR going on. My Mac mini died a couple months ago and I've been waiting for something to happen in the mini/AppleTV space before re-committing.
post #36 of 137
250GB HDD with 2GB RAM should be the smallest configuration, and from now on for US$499.00 (the first sub 500 in Apple line!!!).
4GB with a new 500/640GB HDD should be the biggest for US$599 or US$649, up to 8GB and 2.66 to 3.0 GHZ CPU should be fine also.
If Apple really wants get a lot (a lot not someones) of unsastified Windows Vista customers, iWork should be included at no charge for the Mac Mini, this way this entry level will be unbeatable and PLEASE, includes a HDMI with audio and video output, this will never compete with Apple TV, because its price is around half of the minis!
post #37 of 137
Quote:
Originally Posted by KingKuei View Post

It doesn't sound like a hardware update is coming other than maybe a minor speed bump. If Apple chooses to move its iMac line to a Core i5/i7 architecture, I could conceivably see Apple clearing its supplies of older Core 2 Duos by putting them in the mini. Aside from that, my guess would be that Apple discontinued their low end mini and will move the current higher end one into its price point ($799 down to $599) and possibly leave just a single model mini much in the same way they kept a single model of white MacBook.

The audio through DisplayPort was an intriguing idea, but one that would require a refresh to the entire Apple cinema display line for it to make sense and thus far, it doesn't appear that Apple has given any indication if a pending update to those. So it seems unlikely to me that Apple would make such an update to it's computer hardware without concurrently releasing displays that can take advantage of it.


It would be easy enough to offer one model but with some upgrade options allowing for a more powerful configuration. I would guess the entry configuration being a 2.26Ghz processor, the 320G hard drive and 2gigs of RAM. Offer the 2.53Ghz processor as an upgrade, maybe 500G hard drive and of course 4gigs of RAM.

Of course it would be easy enough for Apple to offer a second configuration boasting the 2.53, and the 4gigs of RAM. I can only imagine that going from my current set-up to the upgraded mini would mean a massive performance boost. 1.83 to 2.53, better GPU and loads more RAM. I have to believe that such a machine would be so capable most would find it capable enough.
post #38 of 137
I can see maybe a core i5 going into the mini or say one of those new dual core atoms with an ion chipset?
post #39 of 137
Quote:
Originally Posted by MacTripper View Post

Matte options PLEASE dear Apple!

If matte does become an option, unfortunately it'll probably come at an additional $100 pricetag. Ka-ching! Kind of gives a whole new meaning to a 'greener' Apple.
post #40 of 137
AI is likely correct that production of the new iMac started two weeks ago.

Does anyone have any info on how many units Apple usually needs at launch?
Also, what do the production lines in China typically produce per day?

Given the inventory warning today, it should be a simple matter of math to work out when the new iMacs will be unveiled.
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