Apple pulled a surprising move today and discretely updated the iMac and Mac Mini's before the confirmed September 12th "Showtime" event. Hopefully this means that the event is going to show off many new products and that Apple had to get these out of the way. So let's see what Apple unleashed today.
iMacs Get Core 2 Duo, 24-inch Model
The iMac lineup got sprinkled with the mobile dual-core processor from Intel, the Core 2 Duo. Models are offered with processor speeds ranging from 1.83GHz to 2.33GHz with each core using its own 2MB L2 cache (1MB L2 cache/core on the 1.83GHz model). The iMac lineup got topped off with the addition of a flat-out amazing 24-inch iMac. The top-end 24-inch model includes a FireWire 800 port, an Nvidia 7300GT graphics card and more powerful 24-Watt amplified speakers. A nice thing to note is that the 24-inch iMac's display has a viewing angle of 178Â° from side to side - making it perfect for watching movies with a bunch of kids filling up your dorm room from end to end.
The best part about the new comer to the bunch, the 24-inch iMac, is that it's priced at 1999. Yeah that's not exactly cheap but you get a 24-INCH SCREEN! Consider the Apple Cinema Display pricing of yesteryear. A 23-inch display was something like 1300. So for 700 more you get an extra inch and a full dual-core computer with tons of goodies. I can see this type of computer coming in handy for graduate students that could really soak up the extra screen real estate with drafting and video editing programs.
Mac Minis Say Goodbye to Core Solo
The Mac Minis also saw a minor update with the base model featuring a 1.66GHz Intel Core Duo processor instead of the 1.5GHz Core Solo. The higher model now features a 1.83GHz Intel Core Duo processor instead of the previous 1.66GHz Core Duo. Everything else remains the same.
iLounge has some speculation as to what these early updates mean for the upcoming "Showtime" event.