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REALISTIC suggestions for new iMac 2004

post #1 of 288
Thread Starter 
What I'm asking everyone to post here in this thread:

Based on fitting in the 4+ product line-up, hitting the consumer plus (prosumer catagory) and current prices and tech trends...

What do you think could the specs be for the new iMac and what price point would be "reasonable" (not yehaa great...or what your Aunt Cheryl would buy)?

My suggestion for the average consumer:

One processor...a G5...1.6 or 1.8 GhZ to keep costs down and choice simple.
Upgradeable Hard Drive (20-40MB less highest PowerMac HD, 5200 RPM)

Upgradeable graphics card (standard card be 'ok' for most folks...1 or 2 other choices for gamers and semi-pro designers).

I/O: 2 FW400, 2 USB2, DVI, Bluetooth, Digital Audio, Airport Extreme (option), ports in front like G5 tower

Small, visually distinctive case

As to AIO vs. 'Headless'...AIO is great IF the price basicly makes the monitor FREE. If an AIO with non-crippled features can cost between $999 and $1400, THEN AIO is fine. It must be cheap if you're going to throw out the monitor when getting a new computer.

Or

Apple can give "rebates" to ALL iMac owners on their new Mac...$50-75 for CRT iMacs, $200-$300 for LCDs....takes the sting out of the "throwing away the monitor" perspective.



Okay,
We've all read or made suggestions that fall in the wish list catagory;

G5 2.5GhZ, 6 slots, headless, detachable/wireless LCDs for $500

and the pessimistic viewpoint

G4 1.8 Ghz, Same inclosure, different color, won't ship till January

and the "I won't buy until they put ... in it".

There is a fine line between realistic (Apple can still make a profit, it's better than it is now, but NOT as good as the pro line for a price tag in the middle).

Most of the posts I've read either accept minimal is what's going to happen or expect a machine better than the pro line for eMac prices.
post #2 of 288
realistic? if you ask me, being out of stock for 1/4 of a year isn't realistic to me...
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post #3 of 288
There are actually plenty of 17" and 20" iMacs available at many Apple Stores and re-sellers. Apple is simply not taking any orders on line.
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post #4 of 288
Cheaper arm (plastic), AIO, non-upgradable video, 1.5GHz G4. Remember, the iMac is fundamentally a repackaged laptop. It is not a shrunken tower, as the Cube was. We'll see the price hit the $999 point for the 15" model. Prepare to be non-blown-away.
post #5 of 288
Quote:
Originally posted by cubist
Cheaper arm (plastic), AIO, non-upgradable video, 1.5GHz G4. Remember, the iMac is fundamentally a repackaged laptop. It is not a shrunken tower, as the Cube was. We'll see the price hit the $999 point for the 15" model. Prepare to be non-blown-away.

plastic arm? the metal isnt the expencive part of the arm, I would imagine that the guts cost far more than the polished metal cover.
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post #6 of 288
I have to agree that the new iMac will not be the machine tghat many are hoping for. Due to heat problems, I think Apple will stay with the G4 and crank it up to 1.5 GHz. They may also up the RAM to 512 MB. The HD will most likely remain at 80 GB as that's a pretty good sized HD for this computer. A Firewire 800 port wilol probably be added as well. You must remember, the iMac is a consumer machine meant for persons who want a good, reliable computer - not a user who wants the latest and greatest. For them, there is the PM.
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post #7 of 288
Quote:
Originally posted by chipz
the iMac is a consumer machine meant for persons who want a good, reliable computer - not a user who wants the latest and greatest. For them, there is the PM.

Yes, and of course the general consumer is an idiot who likes to spend way too much for an under-equipped machine? No.

Either way, the thing needs a G5. Another G4 and iMac sales will keep declining just like they have been.

-M
post #8 of 288
Quote:
Originally posted by chipz
I have to agree that the new iMac will not be the machine tghat many are hoping for. Due to heat problems, I think Apple will stay with the G4 and crank it up to 1.5 GHz. They may also up the RAM to 512 MB. The HD will most likely remain at 80 GB as that's a pretty good sized HD for this computer. A Firewire 800 port wilol probably be added as well. You must remember, the iMac is a consumer machine meant for persons who want a good, reliable computer - not a user who wants the latest and greatest. For them, there is the PM.

Heat problems can be solved by using low frequency G5... I'm not sure that a 1.2GHz G5 dissipates so much heat!
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post #9 of 288
Thread Starter 
Why would an iMac need Firewire 800?

My question really should have been:


What specs/features would be compelling or spur sales, while still being possible for under $1500?

The biggest complaints I've read on the boards about the iMac:

Price: Too expensive for the old specs and what consumer market it was aimed at

Poor Graphics CardNon upgradeable graphics card (bad for gaming0

Non-reuseable monitor: Can't use monitor when getting a new computer/wasted expense.

What ways would you guys suggest to address these issues?


Heat issues aside, Apple will NOT improve iMac sales unless the new iMacs have a G5 or Dual G4 OR drop prices drasticly.
post #10 of 288
Quote:
Why would an iMac need Firewire 800?

The more appropriate question is "why wouldn'tan iMac need FW800?"

Computers are purchased to meet the needs for years beyond their purchase. FW components are available today so there is no reason why an Apple homegrown tech isn't taken advantage of.

The iMac needs

1. Upgadable graphics
2. Seperate monitor
3. Lower prices

We need 2 out of the 3 Apple. Take your pick.
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post #11 of 288
I'm going to stretch the REALISTIC part...

I would love to see iMacs come with an iSight or a built in iSight. This would be a cool extra and would help to increase the number of people out there with whom one can video conference. Aplle has pushed the adoption of many technologies. Tiger is going to improve on iChat AV, what we need is more computers out their that are ready for it. I think more people will use it if they come with the computer, rather than going out and buying the thing.

I know, probably won't happen.
post #12 of 288
I like that prediction carson... for some reason I don't see them doing it, but it would be great.

I would bet the farm apple will in now way release a 1.5ghz g4. If they were going to they would have MONTHS ago. Obviously it isn't that hard to throw in a 1.5g4 if they can fit it into a laptop. Judging by the heat problems and WWDC, apple has put a lot of time and effort into the g5 iMac... I don't believe they will let that go.

My prediction ... realistically.

low end
------------------
1.6ghz g5
nVIDIA 5200 64mb
80gb drive (ata 7200)
1 fw 400 / 1 fw800
4 usb 2.0
17" LCD BUILT-IN
------------------
$1,599.99

(why 1.6? because they discontinued the powermac and still have a sufficient supply of these procs). This was reported on a few months ago. I'm too lazy to find url. Also the difference between a 1.5ghz g4 (WITH NO L3 CACHE!!!) and a 1.6ghz g5 is exponentialy different. Paying for anything less would sting very bad in sales right now.

high end
------------------
1.8ghz g5
ati 9600 64mb
120gb drive (ata 7200)
1 fw 400 / 1 fw800
4 usb 2.0
20" LCD BUILT-IN
------------------
$1,999.99

I have heard rumors apple plans on dropping the 15" lcd's... if this isn't true then we'll see another 1.6 for 1299. I don't feel prices on LCDs have dropped enough in the last year for them to be able to manufacture an LCD AIO that much cheaper. Time will tell.

 

 

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post #13 of 288
Formfactor: AIO - because if it's not AIO, they will probably give it a new name.
CPU: G5 - because if it's only a G4, Apple would have already released the specs and started taking pre-orders.
# of CPUs: Single processor - Heat and cost. no brainer.
Clockspeed: 1.5 - because it needs to be faster than the current iMac but slower than PowerMacs. It should match the clockspeed of Powerbooks.
LCD: 17" and 20" - Apple wants 16:9 on all monitors. A 15" 16:9 will be pointless.
Ports: Same as current iMac except some should be in front of machine. Maybe optical audio out.
Hard drive: SATA 120GB and above
CD drive: Superdrive
Keyboard/Mouse: Standard WIRED mouse - unless they found a way to use troubleshooting keystrokes with the wireless keyboard but that would mean new boot ROM.
GPU: The fastest mobile GPU available at the time.
Wifi and bluetooth, iSight etc: Optional. Apple doesn't want to make the iMac any more expensive than it is.
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post #14 of 288
You think they'll go with the more expensive SATA?? How come? What advantage does it offer in the iMac?

 

 

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post #15 of 288
I think we'll definitely see a G5. However, if it is basically a screen with everything behind the LCD like some sources have previously mentioned, it's gonna be tough for Apple to cool that processor down. Especially since I would imagine that so much heat behind an LCD could probably damage it. Who knows what the final product will look like.
post #16 of 288
Quote:
Originally posted by The One to Rescue
Heat problems can be solved by using low frequency G5... I'm not sure that a 1.2GHz G5 dissipates so much heat!

Yes, except that a 1,4 ghz G4 will perform better (except for FP) than a 1,2 G5.

I expect G5 at 1,6 and 1,8. Heat is an issue, if you consider noise, otherwise you have only to put a huge fan like in PC.
post #17 of 288
Quote:
Originally posted by Powerdoc
Yes, except that a 1,4 ghz G4 will perform better (except for FP) than a 1,2 G5.

I expect G5 at 1,6 and 1,8. Heat is an issue, if you consider noise, otherwise you have only to put a huge fan like in PC.

With a 600MHz FSB, a 1.2GHz G5 can be something quite nice IMO, that would be a nice chip for the low-end. Then 1.5 and 1.8 on the mid-end and high-end.
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post #18 of 288
Quote:
Originally posted by BeigeUser
LCD: Apple wants 16:9 on all monitors.

Unfortunately! Apple should use standard ratio modells to bring the cost down.
post #19 of 288
I think apple will try their darnest to get the G5 into the imac, and if what all these sources say are true, I think it will look like the Sony Vaio W pc, basically the pizza box look, a box where everything is behind the monitor and a adjustable stand comes out the back to hold it up.

According to sales reports the sony vaio w sells extremely well, to the point that they can hardly keep it in stock.

Personally I like the look of the imac right now compared to the vaio w
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post #20 of 288
Quote:
Originally posted by emig647
You think they'll go with the more expensive SATA?? How come? What advantage does it offer in the iMac?

Flexibility of position and better airflow. The SATA cable is quite a bit smaller and potentially longer than the old parallel cables.
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post #21 of 288
This is how my theory goes...

If you look back to when the original Powermac G3s were released in November 1997 you will notice clock speeds of 233/266Mhz in the desktop version . Within 10 months the original iMac was released with a clock speed of 233Mhz. Now, if you ask me, it stands to reason if they could release a machine then that was as powerful as the bottom line Powermac then, they can do it now. They even have the added difference of dual CPUs in the Power Macs now

The only question is - do they match the original line up (making the new iMac a 1.6Ghz G5) or the current line up (making it a juicy 1.8Ghz)

Just an idea
post #22 of 288
Quote:
Originally posted by Ichiban_jay
I think apple will try their darnest to get the G5 into the imac, and if what all these sources say are true, I think it will look like the Sony Vaio W pc, basically the pizza box look, a box where everything is behind the monitor and a adjustable stand comes out the back to hold it up.

According to sales reports the sony vaio w sells extremely well, to the point that they can hardly keep it in stock.

Personally I like the look of the imac right now compared to the vaio w

i posted this already @news Comments » Apple burnt by iMac G5 heat issues
but this is an idea:
(don't know someone metioned this already)

maybe the imac 3 is a pizzabox with a vesa mount to mount the lcd screen on it.
problems solft

cheap headless imac. for the aio haters $999.00
17" imac (17" imac only) $ 1599.00
20" imac (hey) $ 2099.00
23" imac $2799.00
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post #23 of 288
Do you suppose there's any chance of a single PCIexpress slot for the upgradeable graphics that you seem to want ??
(Naturally, the would have to announce PCIexpress for the Powermacs at the same time.)

This would seem like a good move to me, but Apple's history shows that they like to hang on to old stuff WAAAY too long before they adopt what has become the "new" standard (example: look how long it took them to accept USB2)

Anyway, I don't see this as likely, just wondering if anyone else DOES think it's possible...
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post #24 of 288
Quote:
Originally posted by KingOfSomewhereHot
example: look how long it took them to accept USB2

And DVI...

As for USB 2.0, it was co-developed by Intel and a few other nimbles, and Apple don't like Intel, and Intel don't like Apple. You can fill in the rest I'm too lazy. m.
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post #25 of 288
Quote:
Originally posted by gar

cheap headless imac. for the aio haters $999.00
17" imac (17" imac only) $ 1599.00
20" imac (hey) $ 2099.00
23" imac $2799.00 [/B]

This is all fine, but don't forget that Apple inteded to ship the PowerMacs right now as dual 3GHz screamerz. So, why would Apple aim low with the iMac3?
That's the comming of THE iMac3:

2.5GHz G5FX single
30" LCD w/ 2 NVIDIA 6800 (this explains the heat problems, doesn't it?)
1GB RAM
400GB SATA
FW800, 10/100/1000 Ethernet, DVI out etc.

All THAT for not $999, not $799, but $499 (10 easy payments)
post #26 of 288
Quote:
Originally posted by Ichiban_jay
I think apple will try their darnest to get the G5 into the imac, and if what all these sources say are true, I think it will look like the Sony Vaio W pc, basically the pizza box look, a box where everything is behind the monitor and a adjustable stand comes out the back to hold it up.

According to sales reports the sony vaio w sells extremely well, to the point that they can hardly keep it in stock.

Personally I like the look of the imac right now compared to the vaio w

The Vaio w is nice looking, but it doesnt really compare to the iMac we currently have (had). I hope Apple can solve the bulky appearance issues with such a design, if they indeed decided to go with that "style" of a design.
post #27 of 288
I can't see Apple releasing an imac/headless unit with ANY kind of upgradability, (other than ram) or it'll just steal market share from the powermac line. And that's also a reason why there won't be a single G5 processor Mac priced much lower than the low end powermac. Another cube type situation, I think.
post #28 of 288
Quote:
Originally posted by NittanyLionTosh
The Vaio w is nice looking, but it doesnt really compare to the iMac we currently have (had). I hope Apple can solve the bulky appearance issues with such a design, if they indeed decided to go with that "style" of a design.

Maybe, as long as the keyboard is not integrated like the Sony! Tried one at Best Buy, it's impossible to get the display at a comfortable distance unless you like typing at arms length! What's up with that?

Integrated SiS graphics? Oooo boy! And people complain about the 5200...
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post #29 of 288
Quote:
Originally posted by YYZ
I can't see Apple releasing an imac/headless unit with ANY kind of upgradability, (other than ram) or it'll just steal market share from the powermac line. And that's also a reason why there won't be a single G5 processor Mac priced much lower than the low end powermac. Another cube type situation, I think.

The original iMac sold many times more than the PowerMac, and at the time of its introduction it was close to the PowerMac in terms of speed.

I expect the new iMac to give the PowerMac a run for its money. I wouldnt doubt a 1.8 or 2 GHz G5 (single) in them.
post #30 of 288
Lowend

1.6 ghz w/ 533 mhz fsb ( 3:1 ratio to prevent cannibilzation of towers, while still fast enough to feed cpu)

128 megs of ram (2 ram slots for a max of 2 Gb of ram)

Cheapest video card they can get in an 8X AGP slot (to be changed to PCIe at a later date)

One open PCI slot (possibly PCI-X but doubtful, again to be replaced at a later date w/ newer architecture)

expect the rest to be same or similar to current imacs except form and hopefully, assuming they want more marketshare, it's headless.

For the highend I'd expect 2.4 ghz w/ 800 mhz fsb and 512 megs of ram and a better video card, hard drive and such.

In between would be a 2.0 ghz system w/ 667 mhz fsb and 256 megs of ram and so forth.

Oops forgot to say G5 not G4 though that should be obvious.
post #31 of 288
Quote:
Originally posted by Dazaran
Lowend

1.6 ghz w/ 533 mhz fsb ( 3:1 ratio to prevent cannibilzation of towers, while still fast enough to feed cpu)

128 megs of ram (2 ram slots for a max of 2 Gb of ram)

Cheapest video card they can get in an 8X AGP slot (to be changed to PCIe at a later date)

One open PCI slot (possibly PCI-X but doubtful, again to be replaced at a later date w/ newer architecture)

expect the rest to be same or similar to current imacs except form and hopefully, assuming they want more marketshare, it's headless.

For the highend I'd expect 2.4 ghz w/ 800 mhz fsb and 512 megs of ram and a better video card, hard drive and such.

In between would be a 2.0 ghz system w/ 667 mhz fsb and 256 megs of ram and so forth.

Oops forgot to say G5 not G4 though that should be obvious.

Why would you want to screw with bus speed at all? Single vs. Dual processor is not differentiation enough? I also don't think you can order *any* current machine with less than 256MB.
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post #32 of 288
Since when is a 15" display not suitable for wide format? I love the shape and size of my PowerBook's wide 15" display and think it should be perfectly suitable for the new iMac.

While I like the idea of a vertical pizza box, I can't help but think it would be extremely unbalanced, regardless of the type of arm/stand. Even if they were to use laptop components, which would be way too expensive, the pizza box would weigh-in at 6 or more pounds. That means that the arm/stand will either be really heavy or, well, really heavy.

As far as graphics are concerned, I definitely wouldn't get my hopes up for a swappable card. An built-in card solves many of the space/cooling issues that go hand-in-hand with all iMacs. I'll bet all those cube owners are so happy they have that AGP slot since virtually no after market cards fit in the case anyway. The iMac would be a similar situation.

I think a G5 at as little as 1.2 GHZ would be fine, so long as it features the same 2:1 FSB.
post #33 of 288
Quote:
Originally posted by Michael Wilkie
While I like the idea of a vertical pizza box, I can't help but think it would be extremely unbalanced, regardless of the type of arm/stand. Even if they were to use laptop components, which would be way too expensive, the pizza box would weigh-in at 6 or more pounds. That means that the arm/stand will either be really heavy or, well, really heavy.

It so happens that Apple has a stand that holds up a giant 30" beast of a display...

Quote:
As far as graphics are concerned, I definitely wouldn't get my hopes up for a swappable card. An built-in card solves many of the space/cooling issues that go hand-in-hand with all iMacs. I'll bet all those cube owners are so happy they have that AGP slot since virtually no after market cards fit in the case anyway. The iMac would be a similar situation.

I think a G5 at as little as 1.2 GHZ would be fine, so long as it features the same 2:1 FSB.

I wouldn't expect a swappable card either, but Apple might borrow that nifty little daughtercard they use in the 17" PowerBook so that they can use ATI or nVIDIA parts without making two different motherboards. That leaves a third party opportunity.

As for the G5, it's designed for high clock speeds. You really don't want to clock it like a G4. I'd expect to see the G5 in an iMac clocked north of 1.5GHz. Preferably closer to 2GHz.
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post #34 of 288
clustering- built right in (10.3.6?)

this way your "overpriced" imac will still be useful sitting in the kids room in 5 years.

All old macs will then have a useful afterlife and decent resale value.

my .02
post #35 of 288
Macs already have high resell values, of course it wouldn't hurt to add that feature.

 

 

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post #36 of 288
Quote:
Originally posted by Amorph
It so happens that Apple has a stand that holds up a giant 30" beast of a display...

That's true. But the truly great thing about the current iMac is the mobility of the display. While the Cinema Display foot could certainly support a pizza box, it would most likely be at the expense adjustability.

Of course, had someone described the current iMacs form before I'd seen it, I would have doubted it's ability to balance as well. If anyone can balance a computer on a stand, it's Apple.
post #37 of 288
Quote:
Originally posted by TednDi
clustering- built right in (10.3.6?)

this way your "overpriced" imac will still be useful sitting in the kids room in 5 years.

All old macs will then have a useful afterlife and decent resale value.

my .02

You could cluster in Panther from the get go.
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post #38 of 288
Quote:
Originally posted by onlooker
You could cluster in Panther from the get go.


is is as easy as rendevous?

or is there more than a few steps. And which programs are configured to be helped by the cluster?

We are talking imac.

computers for the rest of us-

we can obviously cluster G5's and xserves

imac and a powerbook and maby throw in an emac then run some cool (killer) app <read game here> and off you go!

something that windows can't even get close to.

ebay would be dry of all the used mac's in no time and apple backordered for months.

BUZZ galore! stock prices BOOM!

can you see my thinking here!

everybody gets a supercomputer. the ghz debate is rendered moot.

people will be talking in teraflops.

then i can get my cute little Knowledge Navigator!
post #39 of 288
Quote:
Originally posted by Michael Wilkie
That's true. But the truly great thing about the current iMac is the mobility of the display. While the Cinema Display foot could certainly support a pizza box, it would most likely be at the expense [of] adjustability.

Certainly. But then, the adjustability comes at the expense of affordability.

The iMac as Cinema- er, Home Theater Display has several cost advantages, including one I haven't mentioned: Apple no longer has to run wires up through that elaborate arm and through two extremely mobile joints. The whole thing becomes much simpler.

It would have much, if not all, of its old versatility: The Cinema Display stand allows the monitor to be rotated up and down, and you can pivot it side to side simply by moving the whole thing, which should be fairly easy because of the relatively small and centrally located stand. That's close enough given that the new design should be much cheaper to build.

Quote:
Of course, had someone described the current iMacs form before I'd seen it, I would have doubted it's ability to balance as well. If anyone can balance a computer on a stand, it's Apple.

They do their homework, it's true. I don't think anyone expected Apple to be able to stick that big 20" display on that arm, but they did.
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post #40 of 288
my only realistic prediction for the iMac 2004
is that they will come in matching colors of the predicted "new iPod's"...
it kinda seems like they are phasing out white completely!
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