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It was finally time that my wife’s parents got a new computer. It’s been around 8 years since their last, and windows 98 was looking a little long in the tooth. So with that, I recommended they get a new mac with all the trimmings which will give them a much more enjoyable computing experience.

Opening the Box
As usual, Apple prevails when it comes to beautiful packaging. I mean who would think that a computer would come with only

Case
Sex, sex, sex. From any angle, the iMac is a feast for the eyes, with its aluminum bezel and contrasting counterparts it is both form and function. This is another winner for Jonathan Ive.

Sound
I loaded up a CD in itunes, just to get a flavor for the speakers, and I’ll say this – for the enclosure to be so tiny, I see where some sacrifices had to be made. Let’s have all fairness here, if sound is your main thing, it wouldn’t matter what was inside this thing, you’d have some external speakers running along side. Yet the speakers do emit rather generously loud tones, though a little too mid-rangey for my taste.

Screen
This is where it gets ugly. Gloss screens should just be abandoned. The only thing they are good for is viewing photographs. Mind you this would be photographs you’re not going to touch up. The false sense of contrast and the color shift that occurs when moving from side to side is enough to make any designer get a little acid reflux while working with it.

Performance
Performance on this machine is quite good. There is no UI lag of older machines that run leopard. It’s really quite transparent when launching applications, switching apps, running time machine and doing a bazillion other things at the same time. Of course before I even started tinkering around, I maxed out the ram with 4GB of Crucial memory so this could also be part of the result. Since this is more of a browsing/email machine, I didn’t bother specking it out with xbench, geekbench or any of the other benchmarking tools.

Overall
Overall this is a great machine for someone who wants to get the simple things in life done. Calendar, Mail, Surf, Spreadsheet, Documents, etc. However, if you are in the creative field whatsoever, damn you to get this machine. The glossy screen is nothing more than to keep up with all the other bling out in the laptop/desktop market. My view is of course jaded, but nonetheless, truthful. I love macs, at least for the foreseeable future and I would like it if Apple would stay true for the creatives rather than going for the mass market appeal. Think different was, in my mind, one of their best campaigns and now I feel there new slogan should be “For the Masses” because that’s who they are now targeting.