It's asking even more of thermal design. Unfortunately you'll never see a card that uses that much power (produces that much heat) in an iMac unless they redesign the case.
I'm in the market for a new iMac myself - I sure wish they could change the laws of thermodynamics. The 2600 is a lame card.
They fit a 7600GT into the last white case.
The 8800 series is a bit heavy thermally speaking.
But the 9000 series is a die shrink with reports of better thermals.
I think it's just nonsense. I've seen a laptop as thick as the iMac with a SLI 8800M set up. And a quad 2.66.
Dunno. They can fit a terabyte HD in there and a 2.8 gig dual core cpu but not a better GPU? I don't believe they can't fit a better gpu in there.
The fact is Apple had a history of including lame to moderate gpus in the workstations. Let alone the iMac.
They can do better. I hope they do. *looks.
The ATI cards seem ok. Offering 'near' (re: outclassed) 8800GT performance for a cheaper price. I can't see how Apple could bung one of them in. I'd probably take it for now.
The next gen gpus are out around July by all accounts. And offering twice the current gpu SLI performance on one card. So. It is a waiting game.
In the meantime, I'm betting Apple shipping an iMac within the month. Gut instinct. And, if they offer something more than a 2600xt but less than a GT? I'm going to get it.
Then I can get my 'dream machine' Nehalem with a 'true' next gen card around Jan' 09, I'm guessing.
Lemon Bon Bon.