Pros iLife packs a solid suite of the most useful programs, and they all work!
Cons iChat needs better compatibility with non-Mac users (AIM, Messenger, etc.)
Summary Let me start by saying I actually OWN this computer. It cracks me up that people are rating a machine that they do not own or have not actually even tested, but oh well, this forum is all about opinions.
Speed: the machine does feel about 15% faster than my 2Ghz iMac G5 doing simple tasks, like booting or opening programs. Where you really see more speed is when using iPhoto and video editing. I am reluctant to rate speed by just looking at the sticker GHz of the processor - that is why you use benchmark tests, since other factors also affect speed like total RAM, cache, and hard drive RPM for starters.
Cosmetics: it is truly beautiful, and it looks GREAT on my desk. I find it ludicrous that people bang Apple for charging for looks. I actually don't mind paying extra for something that looks good. The PC these MACs replaced in my house were full of wires, big, noisy, and ugly. Not to mention took a lot more space on my desk. So if you still believe looks don't matter ask Cindy Crawford...
Functionality: the iLife suite is so cool! everything works so well. No compatiblity issues between programs, crashes, or hardware configuration problems. iLife 06 just packs almost everything you would need for your digital life: video, photography, music, and sharing your stuff with family and friends. This is a big deal for me. I had always used Dell desktops. My last one, an XPS "powerhouse" at 3.4 GHz and a long list of "great" hardware had to be re-configured 4 times. I had a long list of problems getting the software to work and not create conflicts with video capture, crashes, and blue screens of death. Not to mention that I had to buy all this extra software to do this, that actually comes free with the MAC and works right out of the box. After endless wasted hours with tech support, I bought my first Mac and ther has been no looking back. I still have my Windows 2000 laptop from work, but there is just no comparison between the simplicity and ease of use of the Macs. All the time I spent "fixing" my PC I spend now doing the stuff I want to do with the computer. I am fairly literate with computers, so I can only think what it must be for people that have little skills or just no time to figure things out.
So yeah, there are faster PC's, so what? For the stuff I do, the Mac is perfect. By the time I priced a similar PC with all the software I wanted, I find the MAC to be a better value.
The only things I would like to see in these machines are:
Better compatibility between iChat and other web video clients, like AIM and so. iChat and the video quality simply smokes out PC programs of the kind. So IMHO, Apple should do some work to make it 100% compatible. There are tricks and ways of doing it, but it is quite a bit of work on the PC side. I would also like to see these MACs go out with 1GIG of RAM. Video editing is smoother and it really brings out the speed of the dual processors to shine.
Very pleased with this computer overall. Easy to use, great looks, good speed for video, photos and music, stable, secure, and just fun. If you have similar needs, this may be for you.
"AWESOME!!!"on by bibgho
Pros Speed, clutter-free, ease of use - EVERYTHING
Cons I could not control access to Movie Trailers that are not suitable for my kids.
Summary I bought a 17" iMac for my daughter (9yr old) for the holidays. Within a week of this the Intel-Duo Core was announced. Luckily I could return this and placed an order for the NEW 20" iMac with "Intel-inside".
I had been a BIG Mac user back in college (some 11 years back) given that Mr. Jobs had a strong connection with my Ala Mater. Since getting out of college i got sucked in to the world of the "windoze" machines. I needed to get my kids (9 yr old and a 4 year old) a machine that they could play and "work" on. The 17" iMac was an eye opener about where the MAC was compared to my PC (Higher Clock GHz and RAM) running XP as a MEDIA machine. Now with the 20" iMac I am alarmed at the alacrity that has been infused in to this machine.
The out-of-the-box ease of the product was alarming. I took time to set it up, but I am sure even my 9 yr old could have set this machine up. The ease with which we made our first calendar using the iPhoto was really amazing. The software suite included is really fabulous and adds a comfort feeling for managing/editing digital content whether it be creating DVD, making Picture CDs etc. The Front Row is Alarming. However, the only problem was that I just could not restrict what Movie trailers could be played on the machine - I certainly do not want my kids to be watching "R" rated movie trailers.
What was even more alarming is that I could even use ssh from the UNIX Terminal to my work without requiring any additional setup or 3rd party software. I can compile, code as well as get all my work e-mail on my UNIX machine at work. With my copy of the Microsoft Office 2004 (for Mac) I can even do my more mundane work (I was initially worried that the Office suite (for Mac X) would not work on the Intel machine, but it works fine).
Overall from the ordering of the machine on Apple Store to receiving it and setting up, I am extremely happy. Mr. Jobs you have not only made me happy with how the stock did last year, but now with this new iMac - a BIG Thank you.
To any one reading this to make a decision - get this machine without a second thought if you want to spend close to $1700. If not, a comparable PC with the same computing speed, software but wihtout the "WOW-Factor" will be at least $500 more just in hardware, keep another $500-1000 for the software.
Pros Amazing machine.
Cons Have not found one yet.
Summary I want to start off by saying the following:
To my 6 friends who I gave grief to for dumping their PCs and switching to the new iMac. I am sorry. I now truly understand the difference between productivity and frustration. Thanks for pulling me to the Apple Store.
You know I have done a few write-ups on C|NET and really have never been so positive about a product like I am about this iMac.
I went to the Apple store and bought a iMac Core Duo. I cannot express how excited I am, and how much work I get done without problems. You cannot put a price on this feeling of accomplishment when a computer really works. Unlike my frustration that I have for my Dell computer.
I look forward to throwing my Dell out my car window at 75mph. I cannot tell you how much frustration I have had in projects not getting done properly, or the design ideas I had to drop because the software on the PC could not do the job correctly. This is no joke!
Right out of the box this iMac computer has all I ever needed. I have been limping around with a Dell most of my life. I cannot tell you how much iLife '06 that comes with the iMac has changed the way I do things. Plus, to my surprise there was a program called 'Comic Life' - cool program. Comic Life allows you to gather images and create quick and easy comic books.
The other product that is built in to the iMac is the iSight with iChat. I just finished a three person video conference with friends in Italy. It was great to see and talk to them for 2 hours with no problems. Cannot have three + people in a video conference at the same time on a PC without a separate server running somewhere on the Internet.
** WARNING - THIS IS ME VENTING FROM YEARS OF FRUSTRATION **
The problem with the PC is Microsoft's Windows. I do not care about backing one OS over another. I don't play - this OS is better then that OS. I just care about getting my work done with NO complications. It took me a long time to figure that out, and a trip to CES this year to see Microsoft's new Vista - forget it - same crap different packaging.
I love to video edit and do photo work on my computer at home. I have a Canon Digital Rebel and take hundreds of pictures. I have a HD camera and video edit on occasion. The PC lags and sometimes crashes under XP. I can be right in the middle of a little home project and the computer craps out. 2GB memory and the computer still slows to a crawl while I am working.
The other issue I had working on my Dell is the drivers. I was working for 1 week on a single issue of a stupid driver. My audio fell apart after I installed Windows Media player (the new one). Audio issues ever since. No one could help and everyone I emailed blamed the next guy. I am done with that crap!
** DONE VENTING **
What the iMac has done for me is allowed me to do my thing and move on. This new iMac is so awesome and FAST! I appreciate C|NETs views but until I got the iMac home I really did not understand what power one could really have at their disposal.
I am not a Mac Head and have a few things to learn about this new platform. Right out of the box it has NOT been hard. In fact it has been quite easy. I find myself up all hours of the early morning having fun with amazing bits and pieces of this new world. I never felt this way with the PC.
There is nothing I can do on a PC that I can't do on my new iMac. Except my iMac has not crashed in the middle on my projects.
I LOVE THIS THING. Thanks Apple!
Programs I have installed on my new iMac that were not included with my purchase:
100+ widgets (FREE)
NeoOffice (FREE Microsoft Office Clone)
NVU (Free Web Author)
Skype (Free Phone)
Final Cut Pro
Pros Everything works out of the box, Fast, Great included software
Cons MS Office costs as much as ever!
Summary I had been using a G4 733 which is still a quite passable machine even after 4 years but this computer just smokes.
20" screen is unbelievable; fantastic to work with and great value to be included at the current price point. Very nice aesthetics to have the whole computer in the monitor unlike the clutter at work!
Installation is unbelievably easy... If you have an older mac it will prompt you to connect your old computer by Firewire and it imports everything- all documents, MP3s, videos, and even applications that work without reinstalling.
Included software (iphoto, mail, safari, itunes, iweb, idvd) are fantastic programs and incredibly intuitive and fast. I also liked the free included version of Quicken 2006.
Media browser and remote control very well implemented. Built in isight camera a very nice touch as well- already using it.
The summary is that the new imacs are fast, and a great combination of design, hardware, and software that is priced right and tough to beat.
Pros iLife 2006 is great, fast native software
Cons Rosetta eats memory, everything swaps to disk
Summary I was looking for some opinions from people who have actually used both iMacs, the new Core Duo, and the regular iMac G5.
Attention iMac lovers! Before you squash my review for the low rate I gave, please note that not long ago I wrote a review about iMac G5, and I gave it a 10/10! I LOVE iMac, and I will never go back to Windows.
Now, back to the point. I have both iMacs, and I sincerely wished someone had both iMac like me, and could perhaps give me some outside opinion. Yes, I do have both iMacs. Howcome? I bought an iMac G5 for my wife beginning of January, and then I bough another G5 for myself a few days later. And then, Mr. Apple announces that the new iMac Core Duo ships, so I returned my G5, and ordered Core Duo from apple.com
Yes, it boots faster, and that's about it. I am sure that all the technical specs of Core Duo are amazing and much better than G5, but I want to talk about real life experience that I have day after day, and that I can honestly compare it with the G5 which is just on the other side of my desk.
My wife enjoys her iMac G5, she burns DVDs with family photo albums, plays iTunes, surfs the net, it all happens as quick as she clicks on the mouse, while poor me, I click on a Firefox icon in the dock and wait 20 seconds before it becomes active (and it was already loaded in memory!), and then I need to load an image in Photoshop, I switch to Photoshop, and another 15-20 seconds to switch... and while all that waiting, if I ever change my mind, and want to do e-mail instead, the waiting time just adds up.
When I check the Activity Monitor on the Duo Core, it tells me that the system Page ins/outs are 905,000/375,000. Which means that my iMac uses hard disk instead of RAM. A nd uses it a lot! My wifes iMac G5 numbers are 165,000/173,000 and she was using her computer more. I suspect that Rosetta (the software that allows to run G5 programs on Duo Core) eats lots of memory. I think that maybe if the new Duo Core was shipping with more RAM, it would work faster with non-native software. Can someone confirm?
Conclusion: I have not enough RAM. But howcome I ordered only 512Mb, you ask? Simple. When you buy iMac from Apple, you will see that if you order more RAM in you iMac, not only you will wait more for delivery, but also your iMac becomes non-returnable, because it is "custom-made". That's why I wanted to try the new iMac, with the option to return it.
Now, I wish I gave this new iMac a higher score, but I am sincerely thinking about returning it to Apple, and buying the G5 back again. I already have the RMA (return authorization) from Apple, and I will wait a few more days, maybe some miraculous hint or advise will make me keep this new iMac Core Duo forever.
So this is my honest opinion about the new iMac, and even though I am not entirely happy with the new Core Duo, I still love Apple, and most probably I will be happy again when I get back to G5!
Ah... my wife just went out. Here is my occasion to play with the REAL iMac!