new iMacs, updated mac mini released

September 6, 2006

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Breaking from its traditional Tuesday release day for new products, Apple today released updates to the iMac and Mac mini lines. First, the iMac. Joining the 17-inch and 20-inch models is a 24-inch formfactor starting at $1999 with a 1920×1200 (that’s 1080p, for those who care) display resolution. All iMacs now feature Intel’s new Core 2 Duo “Merom” processor at speeds from 1.83GHz to 2.33GHz, delivering “up to 50% more performance than the previous 20-inch iMac.”

Apple also claims that the new 24-inch model is “a full 40% brighter than the 20-inch model.” The 17-inch iMac also received a $300 price drop, to $999. All iMacs except the base model now come standard with 1GB of RAM and are expandable to 3GB. Put simply, this makes the iMac even more phenomenal than it used to be. Bravo, Apple.

Less significantly, the all Mac mini models now come with Core Duo (not Core 2) processors, with a 1.66GHz Core Duo replacing the 1.5GHz Core Solo in the low-end version and a 1.83GHz Core Duo becoming a standard feature of the top model. You won’t see any announcements of this update on Apple’s website, but this too is a nice bump for consumers looking for conveniently sized and portable Macs.

Obviously, these announcements change the forecast for Apple’s press event next Tuesday, making room perhaps for those MacBook Pro updates (to Core 2) that have been so long in coming and making predictions of a video-enabled AirPort Express seem more likely to come to fruition. In any case, I’ll cover the results right here.

–D. S. W.

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