Think Secret details iMac update

Posted:
in Future Apple Hardware edited January 2014
Think secret updated this morning with details on new iMacs coming by Apple Expo.

Quote:

August 20, 2003 - Exclusive Apple is readying a modest refresh to the iMac line that will provide a speed boost to 1.25GHz, add USB 2.0, and bring the 15-inch model's feature set closer to par with the 17-inch unit.



Think Secret has confirmed the new models' specifications through reliable sources as well as company documents.



The new iMacs, known internally as projects Q26B and Q26C, are nearly ready to ship. However, resellers say there are plenty of iMacs in the retail channel, suggesting that the release is not imminent, and could even be pushed to Apple Expo 2003, which runs in Paris September 16-20.



Apple plans to ship the new models running the Mac OS X 10.2.7 variant code-named Blackrider, which we noted in a Monday report on PowerBook updates.



The company will continue to ship two base iMac models: a 15-inch unit with a DVD-ROM/CD-RW Combo drive and a 17-inch unit with a SuperDrive. Apple will bump the processor speeds to 1GHz for the 15-inch and 1.25GHz for the 17-inch; current models clock at 800MHz and 1GHz, respectively.







Both models will ship with 256MB of RAM with a maximum of 1GB, the same as current units. However, the new 15-inch model will ship with DDR SDRAM, currently available only on the 17-inch unit. Both models will also feature 80GB hard drives; presently the 15-inch has a 60GB drive and the 17-inch ships with 80GB.



Graphics card updates will also be in store. The 15-inch model will ship with an NVIDIA GeForce4 MX graphics processor while the 17-inch unit will pack a GeForce FX 5200. The current models ship with a GeForce2 MX and GeForce4 MX, respectively. Video memory will be unchanged.



None of the new models will ship with a high-speed FireWire 800 port, but the three built-in USB ports on both models will be upgraded to USB 2.0.



The 15-inch model will also receive other features previously available only on the 17-inch SKU: audio line-in, S-video outputs, composite video outputs, and AirPort Extreme support.



It's unclear how Apple plans to price the refreshed iMacs, but the 15-inch model currently sells for $1,299 while the 17-inch model is priced at $1,799.



link



Kind of a weak refresh if you ask me. Maybe topping out @ 1.25 has something to do with how fast they can get the powerbooks right now. Otherwise i dont see the problem with putting in a 1.4 ghz G4.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 89
    hmurchisonhmurchison Posts: 12,309member
    Definitely a weak refresh but I think we all pretty much new that the iMac needs at least one more small referesh before moving to bigger and better things like a G5 in the Top Model etc.



    Still think Apple needs a G4 based Headless computer @ around $699 but then that would kill iMac sales.
  • Reply 2 of 89
    I suspect the next iMac will be a revised design. Perhaps an aluminum enclosure with no more stainless steel neck. I don't think there will be a G5 for the iMac until late in '04. There will need to be several generations of G5's in the Power line before that I believe.
  • Reply 3 of 89
    jcgjcg Posts: 777member
    Weak refreash could also have to do with the lack of a 7457 chip to put in the iMacs and PB's. The most significant changes that I see are the video out additions. Hopefully they will make a good price cut to make them more competative in the consumer market.



    If someone high enough up at Apple reads this please pass along this statement: The continued weak updates to the consumer level computers makes it more attractive to upgrade my Cube than to buy a new computer.
  • Reply 4 of 89
    The consumer level machines are going to be the last macs to de-tangle themselves from the "sucking" tentacles attached to the beast known as motorola.



    The powermac now. The powerbook next. The Imac in a long while...
  • Reply 5 of 89
    hmurchisonhmurchison Posts: 12,309member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by MacsRGood4U

    I suspect the next iMac will be a revised design. Perhaps an aluminum enclosure with no more stainless steel neck. I don't think there will be a G5 for the iMac until late in '04. There will need to be several generations of G5's in the Power line before that I believe.





    Normally I'd let locash handle the grammar moderation. Typically you will want to use "several" when you're talking a larger number such as 5 or more. A "Couple" or a "Few" is what you want to use if you're talking 2 or 3 cycles respectively.



    Late 2004 sounds good. Powermacs would be @ 3Ghz and iMacs could enter at 1.6Ghz G5 and not cannibalize anything. Perhaps then a 1.25Ghz Headless would make sense at $799.
  • Reply 6 of 89
    What about bus speed - can we expect the same? Or will they speed up to 167Mhz? Isn't the 15" at 100Mhz currently, and the 17" at 133Mhz?



    These are pretty minor improvements considering the iMacs infrequent upgrade cycle. It needs a a good price drop to look attractive.
  • Reply 7 of 89
    God, I hate to sound like Matsu, but the quality of this bump will depend completely on price. If they knock $200 off each machine then the new specs are fine. If the prices stay the same then...ouch.
  • Reply 8 of 89
    jcgjcg Posts: 777member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by hmurchison

    Normally I'd let locash handle the grammar moderation. Typically you will want to use "several" when you're talking a larger number such as 5 or more. A "Couple" or a "Few" is what you want to use if you're talking 2 or 3 cycles respectively.



    Late 2004 sounds good. Powermacs would be @ 3Ghz and iMacs could enter at 1.6Ghz G5 and not cannibalize anything. Perhaps then a 1.25Ghz Headless would make sense at $799.




    A year from now PM's at 3 Ghz, low end Wintel computers approaching 2.4 to 2.8 Ghz (currently Dells $499 desktop is using a 2.2) and the iMac is stuck at 1.6 Ghz? G5 or not that will be just as hard to sell in the consumer arena as a 1Ghz iMac is today. Apple needs a computer that is more attractive to consumers, not less. This means more competative speed, competative speed, and good software/services. Your conservative roadmap makes the iMac about half the speed of the high end PM, and does nothing to close the mhz gap that currently exists with Dell and other consumer computer manufacturers, which I'm sure is hurting Apple iMac sales today.



    Apple would be better served to move to a dual=pro/single=consumer model for their computer, especially with the apparent low cost of the 970 processors. That would make the consumer computers competative iin their market and the PM's more than competative in theirs.
  • Reply 9 of 89
    hmurchisonhmurchison Posts: 12,309member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Ensign Pulver

    God, I hate to sound like Matsu, but the quality of this bump will depend completely on price. If they knock $200 off each machine then the new specs are fine. If the price stay the same then...ouch.



    Don't be. For the most part Matsu is right about Apples consumer offerings. Nice shape but the innards are severely lacking.



    Would have liked to see a 1.4Ghz G4 in the Top model and a 1.25 in the base 1299 iMac.
  • Reply 10 of 89
    Quote:

    Originally posted by hmurchison

    Don't be. For the most part Matsu is right about Apples consumer offerings. Nice shape but the innards are severely lacking.



    Would have liked to see a 1.4Ghz G4 in the Top model and a 1.25 in the base 1299 iMac.




    Thats exactly what i was thinking. I figured its either a marketing thing for the iMacs not to exceed the Powerbook frequency (which is expected to top out @ 1.3 Ghz upon the next update) or a cooling issue. I agree that unless there are signifigant price drops, this is not much of an update.

  • Reply 11 of 89
    jcgjcg Posts: 777member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Ensign Pulver

    God, I hate to sound like Matsu, but the quality of this bump will depend completely on price. If they knock $200 off each machine then the new specs are fine. If the price stay the same then...ouch.



    That still leaves the iMac ~1 Ghz slower than Dells $499 desktop (1.25 to 2.2) which will do nothing to close the mzh gap that is has increasingly been hurting Apple's sales over the past 4 years. It also suggests that the 7457 is not ready to ship, I would hope that when it is ready, or when the iMac switches to the G5 we will see the same type of speed boost that Apple gave the PM (aproximatlyy 43% increase). This would put the iMac at ~1.4 Ghz and 1.2 Ghz if it were to happen today, which would be a good upgrade, and should be possable IF the 7457 were ready to ship in quantity.
  • Reply 12 of 89
    Apple should just use a frelling AMD style rating "scheme" and be done with it...



    iMac 2400*



    *links to a web site that shows the imac perform real world general type apps running at the same speed of a pentium 2.4



    or whatever...
  • Reply 13 of 89
    leonisleonis Posts: 3,427member
    Wow....if the spec are like what TS told the price should better be $999 and $1399. I mean it!
  • Reply 14 of 89
    addisonaddison Posts: 1,185member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by JCG

    Weak refreash could also have to do with the lack of a 7457 chip to put in the iMacs and PB's.



    My thoughts entirely. Apple have a real struggle on their hand now. iMac sales must be really struggling and I don't think this bump, if it is accurate is going to make any difference. PC's are so snappy right now the speed gap is just so obvious at consumer level.



    A year or two ago all the iApps were really killer apps. Now windows have caught up and passed us by, certainly in the field of video editing on the cheap. iTunes is still the market leading product though!



    I have seen some wonderful home DVDs made with brilliant menus and support for widescreen produced on PC's. Cutting the price of DVD Studio Pro isn't going to make any difference to consumers.



    I feel sorry for Apple as there OS is developing nicely but too slowly, and the GUI needs fixing (I hope Panther does fix it). They also need a lot more third party support. Why oh why for instance can we not handle/edit moves from Sony DigiCams? Why is browsing rubbish on Macs. There are so many sites that just don't work or display incorrectly.



    Apples seems to produce better and better machines and yet the gap between PC and Macs increases all the time



    As an interesting statistic, most of the popular Mac magazines have seen reductions in their circulation over the last five years. Which seems more worrying than market share figurers as it suggests that the numbers of users is falling.
  • Reply 15 of 89
    rickagrickag Posts: 1,626member
    Seems like Apple/Motorola are really, really banking on the L2 cache increase to speed up machines using the MPC7457.





    And would that be on a whopping 167MHz bus?
  • Reply 16 of 89
    jcgjcg Posts: 777member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by keyboardf12

    Apple should just use a frelling AMD style rating "scheme" and be done with it...



    iMac 2400*



    *links to a web site that shows the imac perform real world general type apps running at the same speed of a pentium 2.4



    or whatever...




    Does the G4 really have twice the real world performance of a Pentium 4? I think that the benchmarks are close to that on some tasks, especially AltiVec enhanced tasks but not across the board. For people who read benchmarks to make computer buying decisions that might be good, but for your average consumer they will look at the numbers and see that the iMac has half the "horse power" of the Wintel box at twice the price, and there you have another "lost sale" gone over to the dark side...
  • Reply 17 of 89
    jwdawsojwdawso Posts: 358member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by JCG

    That still leaves the iMac ~1 Ghz slower than Dells $499 desktop (1.25 to 2.2) which will do nothing to close the mzh gap that is has increasingly been hurting Apple's sales over the past 4 years. It also suggests that the 7457 is not ready to ship, I would hope that when it is ready, or when the iMac switches to the G5 we will see the same type of speed boost that Apple gave the PM (aproximatlyy 43% increase). This would put the iMac at ~1.4 Ghz and 1.2 Ghz if it were to happen today, which would be a good upgrade, and should be possable IF the 7457 were ready to ship in quantity.



    Exactly. It's good news if moto is finally coming through with the 7447/57, and the speed should be at least ~1.4Ghz. And (Matsu - are you listening?) the price should be cut by $200. ~1.6 highend ~1.4 lowend for both the PBs and iMacs. The PBs can stay at around today's prices, the iMacs $200 less. Quite a performance increase for both lines given the 7447/57 advantages in onboard cache and power.
  • Reply 18 of 89
    jcgjcg Posts: 777member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by jwdawso

    Exactly. It's good news if moto is finally coming through with the 7447/57, and the speed should be at least ~1.4Ghz. And (Matsu - are you listening?) the price should be cut by $200. ~1.6 highend ~1.4 lowend for both the PBs and iMacs. The PBs can stay at around today's prices, the iMacs $200 less. Quite a performance increase for both lines given the 7447/57 advantages in onboard cache and power.



    I would be happy with a 1.4 high end iMac and a $200 price drop. Add in FW800, which Apple needs to attract more manufacturers to the new standard, and you have a great upgrade which does more to close the price/performance gap that Apple consumer computers have suffered since the introduction of the original iMac.
  • Reply 19 of 89
    aquaticaquatic Posts: 5,602member
    Yes for us price is just as important or more so than specs. Though the iMac is getting pathetic. Especially the graphics (use ATi!!! Or at least higher end NVIDIA) and CPU. It needs 4 or 600 more mhz and at least 167mhz bus. The rest is fine.
  • Reply 20 of 89
    thttht Posts: 3,323member
    I posted my desktop lineup in the other thread, and praise be, I'll be merciful to pscates and not post it.



    In short, Apple should have a sub-1000 USD headless G4, a 1000-1600 USD headless uniprocessor G5, and all dual Power Mac lineup at the current range. They can make the iMac viable by making it a dual processor 7457 machine at the current price points.



    I used to think that the next iMac has to go G5 because of the continued availability of the PowerMac G4, but by going 1 and 1.25 GHz dual 7457, no L3 cache, it'll offer seem uniqueness to the iMac. Come on Apple, do it.
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