Apple Announces iMac G5, 2" Thick, Starting US$1,299

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PARIS, FRANCE - Apple announced new iMacs today, bringing the long-awaited G5 processor to the consumer product line. The iMac G5 includes a new all-in-one form factor similar to Appleis current line of Cinema Displays, and Apple is touting the design as "the worldis thinnest desktop PC," at only 2" thick.

Apple is offering a 17" 1.6 GHz model with a combo drive, a 64 MB NVIDIA GeForce FX 5200 Ultra video card, two USB 1.1 ports, three USB 2.0 ports, two FireWire ports, 10/100 Base-T Ethernet, a built-in 56K modem, S-Video and composite video out, an 80 GB hard drive, and 256 MB of RAM.

The mid-range model will feature a 17" LCD display with a 1.8 GHz processor, a SuperDrive, and the other features from the entry-level model.

A 20" high-end model will sport a 180 GB of Serial ATA storage. The 20" model is 2.2" inches thick.


The new iMac G5

The company is offering a 17" education model that has no optical drive, nor a modem. It also has video card with only 32 MB of memory, as opposed to the 64 MB cards on the consumer models.

During the Apple Expo keynote this morning, Phil Schiller also said that the iMac G5 has built-in speaker at the bottom of the iMac that are designed to reflect sound off of the desktop towards the user. Appleis iMac G5 spec sheet also notes that the new model supports wall mounting through a VESA mount, an industry standard mounting system.

Mr. Schiller also demonstrated that the back of the iMac is accessible by removing three screws, which allows the user to take off the entire back of the unit. From there, one can easily add memory, or change the drive. In addition, Mr. Schiller showed that the iMac G5 has 3 fans, and that the unit is "quieter than a whisper."


The back of the new iMac, with the cover removed

Also of note is the fact that in a video for the new iMac, the introductory text used the phrase "From the creators of the iPod." To this end, Apple is comparing the way the iMac looks on its stand to the way that an iPod sits in its Dock.


The iMac and the iPod: Twins

Each iMac model can support up to 2 GB of RAM, a substantial increase over previous iMac models. The company has also added a digital audio output, the same output currently found on Appleis professional Power Mac G5 product line.

Pricing for the units is as follows:

None of the models include an AirPort Extreme card, though the card is available as an option.

You can find the entire product line at the Apple Store. You can find additional details on the iMac at Appleis iMac Web site.

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