At a Glance
- Rosetta ensures compatibility with most PowerPC programs
- Mini-DVI port with extended-desktop support
- Large-cache Intel processor delivers performance boost for Apple software and other native applications
- Elegant, space-saving design
- Includes iLife ‘06
- Big, beautiful screen
- Built-in iSight
- No support for Classic applications
- Significant speed penalty for non-native software
- Users can no longer do routine hardware repairs
- No productivity software included
The Intel-based Mac era begins with this 20-inch iMac, which runs on a 2.0GHz Intel Core Duo chip. This new Mac features faster RAM than its G5-based predecessor, although maximum memory has dropped to 2GB from 2.5GB in the iMac G5. A mini-DVI port in the new iMac lets you use a second external monitor, and the graphics card has undergone a slight upgrade to the ATI Radeon X1600. (You can upgrade to 256MB of graphics memory for the 20-inch iMac.) Other than that, this latest iMac isn’t that much different from the late 2005 models — right down to the built-in iSight camera and pre-installed Front Row multimedia software.
If you already have a recent Mac, there’s no particular reason to rush out and buy this first Intel-based iMac — you won’t find the computing experience all that different. Even if you’re due for new hardware, don’t buy a new iMac now if you run software that doesn’t yet run natively on the Intel-based iMacs. But for other users, there’s no reason to hesitate: the Intel-based iMacs are already great machines, and they’ll only get better. The extra disk capacity and screen real estate on this model easily justify the extra cost above the 17-inch configuration.