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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
31 of 32 people found the following review helpful: 4.0 out of 5 stars Solid, Quick Mac, Check Your Display, September 6, 2010 This review is from: Apple iMac MC509LL/A 21.5-Inch Desktop (Personal Computers)
I anxiously awaited this summer 2010 update to the iMac line.
iMacs offer a better value than one might think, and the space saving they offer compared to having many components spread out on a desk, make them an attractive offering from Apple.
My current iMac was an aging model, summer 2007. The first iMac with aluminum enclosure. Honestly, however, it is not far off the machines of today particularly notebook models. The iMacs are aging nicely, and I'm sure this new model will too. iMacs tend to offer a better value than notebooks and because they aren't carried around, can have better reliability / longevity too.
When I opened this new computer, I loved the widescreen display. This display is 16x9 similar to a television, whereas conventional widescreen computer monitors were 16x10 (including my old iMac). The extra width gives you more room to fit documents across your desktop (screen) while working. I like that.
Furthermore, don't let anyone suggest that this is not a fast computer. Its 3.2 GHZ i3 processor includes hyper threading to give you up to four "virtual," cores. Some argue that this feature isn't useful, or that not enough applications utilize hyper threading. However, I was able to look at CPU usage and see video encoding software on my computer using the multiple threads. It was fast.
I chose the 21.5 inch model because my desk is simply too small to house the 27-inch model. The 27 is absolutely staggering in size. I would choose it, if I had the room, but the 21.5 is far from being a slouch and is somewhat more sensible looking.
It features standard 4GB of memory, which can be easily upgraded to 8GB by buying two additional 2GB sticks. A 1 TB hard drive being standard on this model will be plenty for all but the hard drive pack rats out there. While optical media is less popular today, do not forget this iMac can play DVDs and burn DVDs. Burning DVDs can also be useful to backup important data such as your family photographs. The speed of the drive is satisfactory, and it is the cool slot loading variety.
A SD card slot is located under the DVD drive, to easily load pictures onto your computer direct from your camera's SD card.
Why choose this 1499 model over the entry level 1199 model? Both are actually competent machines. The 1499 model gives you a larger hard drive (1 TB over 500 GB, so twice the size), and it has a faster graphics processor, which is useful when gaming and in other graphic intensive applications. While I chose the 1499 model, the 1199 doesn't lack much, if that final ten tenths of graphic performance and extra hard drive space is not something you believe you will need. Someone who needs the extra graphic performance or hard drive storage, will probably know it, for they are more intensive users.
The iMacs are great values over notebooks, if you don't need portability. You get more performance, more storage, and a massive display by comparison of a MacBook Pro. All at an attractive price.
One of my favorite features? iMacs have included for the past year bluetooth keyboards and mice standard! That means when you take the iMac out of the box, if you have wireless internet, you can be up and running by simply plugging in the power cord. The Magic Mouse and keyboard are both wireless and work flawlessly. They are easier on batteries than you might think too, though they take easy to acquire AAs.
Included software? The latest operating system Mac OS X Snow Leopard is included, plus iLife 09. iLife includes great and useful applications such as iPhoto, iMovie, and Garage Band.
Someone new to Mac might consider picking up the Student/Teacher/Home edition of Microsoft Office for Mac. It runs beautifully and has a Mac feel to it, despite being a Microsoft product.
My final verdict? I absolutely adored the machine. It was the fastest Mac I had ever used and a solid upgrade over my previous iMac. However, a week into ownership I discovered that the bottom and right side of my screen had a yellow tinge/appearance to it. A white background window, such as Amazon.com page, looked beautiful and white in the top left, but on the rest of the display, it turned yellowish. I had invested so much time transferring my data from my old iMac to my new one. I had to transfer everything back and securely erase the new one before returning it. I didn't want to go through that entire process again, during my busy time of the year, so I just returned it for a refund. Once I have some spare time to go through all the trouble, I will try again. Just be sure to check your display when it arrives because I have read some others having a similar display issue on the Mac Rumors forums.
Overall, this iMac was an impressive update. It features the latest processors, plenty of storage, and this particular model has a strong video card. The display is a great size and aspect ratio, but be sure to check it for the yellowish color when it arrives.Help other customers find the most helpful reviews Was this review helpful to you?
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful: 5.0 out of 5 stars My first Mac, love it!, September 6, 2010 This review is from: Apple iMac MC509LL/A 21.5-Inch Desktop (Personal Computers) After 25+ years of using PC's (started in the MS DOS days) I got my first Mac, and I love it! Just an FYI, I ordered this model direct from Apple using an education discount, plus upgraded the processor to the dual core i5, but everything else is the same as the model above including screen, GPU, RAM, and Hard drive.
The screen is gorgeous! It has a tiny taint of "discoloration" towards the bottom of the screen (some people have referred to it as yellow), but it doesn't bother me, I hardly notice it all, and I only bring it b/c some hardcore mac users do test after test looking for this "defect". My machine is lighting fast, and ultra quiet. It gets a little hot at the top, but what do you expect for an entire desktop encased in aluminum?
I own an iphone and an iPad, but as a new mac user this was a breeze to set up. It took me a while to perfect the transfer of my itunes library as I'm very particular about not duplicating files, but now its all set up. I set up a 2nd account for my wife, pulling my media to her itunes as a shared drive system which was much easier than I thought it would be. The iSight camera works great for skype and iChat.
I'm getting used to the keyboard and mouse, but overall I'm very please. I've already used bootcamp to install windows 7 ultimate 64bit, it runs fairly flawlessly. I installed parallels 5 as a virtual machine, it works quiet well, but windows "thinks" the VM is a new computer and asks you to reauthenticate windows and MS Office licenses which is a real pain in the ass. But that's a microsoft problem, not mac.
I haven't had a chance to use the iLife products yet, but I'm looking forward to it. I've started ripping my home DVD collection to iTunes via Hand brake and its super quick and easy. The 1 TB hard drive really comes in hand for the extra space.
I bought this as a media and productivity desktop as I don't do PC gaming anymore. I'm very happy for the switch, my iDevices sync flawlessly to the mac, as having full access to my contacts and calendar via iCal is great. I still have to use PC's for work, but I'll never buy another PC for home again. I am fully converted to Apple!Help other customers find the most helpful reviews Was this review helpful to you?
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful: 5.0 out of 5 stars First Time iMac Buyer, October 2, 2010 This review is from: Apple iMac MC509LL/A 21.5-Inch Desktop (Personal Computers) I do a lot of photo work, and decided that I would give apple a try. right out of the box I was impressed with the quality of the product. The workmanship in an apple is far superior to any PC product I have bought in the past 15 years. Set up was a breeze and had the iMac up and running in no time.
If you are on the fence on whether to buy a iMac, I would just simply say that they are a lot like a PC but mostly what i find is the different wording that apple vs PC use. aka: A program in PC is a Application in apple lingo, but once you get pass that I think you will find the iMac a best buy. I have been using mine for a few weeks and really can not find any complaints at the present time. i work with adobe lightroom 3 and PhotoShop 5 on the iMac and it is so fluent. I love it. I still have my PC on the network as well, but the Imac is getting the workload more everyday as I get used to the iMac. Help other customers find the most helpful reviews Was this review helpful to you?
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