Don't-Miss Desktop Stories

Power Mac G5/Dual 2.3GHz

Apple adds a dual-core processor -- two processing units on a single chip -- to its Power Mac line. The new desktops also add PCI Express, a high-performance interface that's particularly appealing to video pros. (To that end, the Power Mac line offers several video card build-to-order options above the Nvidia GeForce 6600 that comes standard on this model.) Also new: a double-layer SuperDrive, two Gigabit Ethernet ports, and faster DDR2 RAM.

Power Mac G5/Dual 2GHz

Apple adds a dual-core processor -- two processing units on a single chip -- to its Power Mac line. The new desktops also add PCI Express, a high-performance interface that's particularly appealing to video pros. (To that end, the Power Mac line offers several video card build-to-order options above the Nvidia GeForce 6600 LE that comes standard on this model.) Also new: a double-layer SuperDrive, two Gigabit Ethernet ports, and faster DDR2 RAM.

iMac G5s solid, despite Front Row quirks

The new iMac G5s, like their predecessors, are excellent computers for home and business use alike. But early users of Front Row are bound to be as frustrated by the program’s limitations as they are excited by its potential.

20-inch iMac G5/2.1GHz

Introduced in October 2005, the refurbished iMac line now comes with a built-in iSight camera plus a remote control. The latter comes in handy with a news software program that comes preinstalled on the iMac -- Front Row, a digital media application for playing back movies, DVD, QuickTime movie trailers, and video downloads from the iTunes Music Store. Photo Booth, another newly installed app, lets users take pictures with the iSight and edit them. In addition to a faster processor and frontside bus, this new iMac also ships with a Mighty Mouse multi-button mouse. In February 2006, Apple cut the price of this iMac G5 model by $200 to $1,499.

17-inch iMac G5/1.9GHz

Introduced in October 2005, the refurbished iMac line now comes with a built-in iSight camera plus a remote control. The latter comes in handy with a news software program that comes preinstalled on the iMac -- Front Row, a digital media application for playing back movies, DVD, QuickTime movie trailers, and video downloads from the iTunes Music Store. Photo Booth, another newly installed app, lets users take pictures with the iSight and edit them. In addition to a faster processor and frontside bus, this new iMac also ships with a Mighty Mouse multi-button mouse.

Mac mini/1.25GHz

Apple's least expensive Mac ships without a mouse, display, or keyboard. But it does feature a G4 processor, up to 80GB of storage depending on configuration, and a slot-loading DVD-ROM/CD-RW optical drive. In July 2005, Apple doubled the installed memory to 512MB across the mini line.

Mac mini/1.42 GHz (SuperDrive)

This model -- added when Apple doubled the installed memory on Mac minis to 512MB in July 2005 -- is essentially a 1.42GHz Mac mini G4 with a SuperDrive instead of a Combo drive. All other specs are the same, including the standard AirPort Extreme and Bluetooth wireless technologies.

Mac mini/1.42GHz

Apple's least expensive Mac ships without a mouse, display, or keyboard. But it does feature a G4 processor, up to 80GB of storage depending on configuration, and a slot-loading DVD-ROM/CD-RW optical drive. In July 2005, Apple doubled installed memory to 512MB across the mini line. AirPort Extreme and Bluetooth wireless capabilities are now standard on this model.

iBook G4 and Mac mini: Minor updates, major value

No update to Mac product lines escapes our attention—especially when it’s the first revision of the Mac mini, with previously optional features for a low price. Bigger news is the iBook G4 line getting the PowerBook treatment with some high-end features. Brace yourself: we even dropped the iBooks to test the new Sudden Motion Sensor.

eMac/1.42GHz (SuperDrive)

This third update to the eMac features a faster processor, more standard RAM, a better video card, a dual-layer-burning SuperDrive, and more hard drive capacity.

Sturdy eMac G4s still attractive

Altogether, no one would call the eMacs speedsters by today’s standards. Still, the update produces a surprisingly large boost in the eMacs’ scores on our benchmark tests. Henry Norr takes a look at the latest G4/1.42GHz eMacs, still going strong with CRTs.

eMac/1.42GHz (Combo Drive)

This third update to the eMac features a faster processor, a better video card, and more hard drive capacity.

Power Mac G5 Dual 2.7GHz

This dual-2.7 GHz Power Mac G5 is the fastest of the third round of Power Mac G5 models, which were introduced in late April 2005. Unlike previous models, a 56K modem is only an option on this system.