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Thunderbolt Arrives on the Desktop: New Apple iMacs Now Available

05.3.11 @ 4:44PM Tags : , , ,

Apple today released four new iMacs with the usual slew of processor/graphics upgrades, including new Intel Sandy Bridge quad-core processors, AMD Radeon HD graphics processors, FaceTime HD camera, and a new port around back (two of them, in fact) that should be a boon for video editors: Thunderbolt. Marking the first time Thunderbolt ports are available on a desktop computer, the new 10Gbps standard is up to 12 times faster than Firewire 800, making for faster video transfers from compatible devices. The new iMacs start at $1199 and claim to be up to 70% faster than the previous generation.

Here are the four models:

21.5-inch iMac – 21.5-inch (viewable) LED-backlit glossy widescreen display with support for millions of colors. Resolution: 1920 by 1080 pixels

  • $1,119:
  • 2.5Ghz quad-core Intel Core i5 with 6MB on-chip shared L3 cache
  • 4GB 1333MHz DDR3 RAM (configurable to 16GB)
  • 500GB hard drive
  • AMD Radeon HD 6750M graphics processor with 512MB of GDDR5 memory
  • $1,499:
  • 2.7GHz quad-core Intel Core i5 with 6MB on-chip shared L3 cache (configurable to 2.8GHz quad-core Intel Core i7)
  • 4GB 1333MHz DDR3 memory (configurable to 16GB)
  • 1TB 7200rpm hard drive (configurable to 2TB hard drive or 256GB solid-state second drive)
  • AMD Radeon HD 6770M graphics processor with 512MB of GDDR5 memory

The new iMac. The ultimate all-in-one goes all out

27-inch iMac – 27-inch (viewable) LED-backlit glossy widescreen TFT display with support for millions of colors. Resolution: 2560 by 1440 pixels

  • $1,699:
  • 2.7GHz quad-core Intel Core i5 with 6MB on-chip shared L3 cache
  • 4GB 1333MHz DDR3 memory (configurable to 16GB)
  • 1TB 7200rpm hard drive (configurable to 2TB hard drive or 256 solid-state second drive)
  • AMD Radeon HD 6770M graphics processor with 512MB of GDDR5 memory
  • $1,999:
  • 3.1Ghz quad-core Intel Core i5 with 6MB on-chip shared L3 cache (configurable to 3.4Ghz quad-core Intel Core i7)
  • 4GB 1333MHz DDR3 RAM (configurable to 16GB)
  • 1TB hard drive (configurable to 2TB hard drive or 256GB solid-state second drive)
  • AMD Radeon HD 6970M graphics processor with 1GB of GDDR5 memory (configurable to AMD Radeon HD 6970M with 2GB DDR5)

[via AppleInsider]

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  • Lostfootage on 05.3.11 @ 6:15PM

    I’m good with my Hackintosh. Thunderbolts a cool idea, but I can’t really go faster than Sata for transfers and I’m not going to splurge on anything else thunderbolt connects to currently.

    • There’s nothing to connect to Thunderbolt, at least not yet, and probably not for another few months.

      I went from homebuilt PC to first-gen 27″ iMac ad it’s been great. They’re excellent machines not as extortionately priced as many seem to think. Yes, upgrading them is basically impossible but they’ll be great machines for years to come :)

      • plus, when there are things to connect to that thunderbolt port, you’ll have it o PCs too: contrary to popular belief, it’s not apple’s technology, it’s intel’s

  • Alec Sprinkle on 05.3.11 @ 8:13PM

    I agree with Lost. The connections I have to drives are plenty fast. Even my FW800. A faster connection isn’t going to speed up how fast a video is edited.

  • Anthony Haden Salerno on 05.3.11 @ 10:59PM

    Well, I’ll be the first to say it then…

    I just bought myself a completely maxed-out-to-the-walls 27″ iMac and I can’t wait! I’ve been so very close to building the Hackintosh laid out in amazing and cooperative detail here on this site, but one nagging thing has been holding me back: I switched from PC to Mac half a decade ago so I didn’t have to “go under the hood” anymore which is exactly what the Hackintosh requires in spades. I know it’s also about the butt-loads of cash that can be saved, but the new iMac has materialized as the perfect middle-ground for me between the overpriced Mac Pros and the bargain brilliance of the Hack Pros. I use a computer as a tool to focus on film making and storytelling, and when an update is available I want to install it with confidence and not have to “get under the hood” if something isn’t working. Mac has made the pursuit of my creative art so much easier and more versatile over the years, and I’m just not comfortable second guessing them. I suppose in the end I equated my peace-of-mind to be worth about a grand, give or take! My hat’s off to all of you happy Hackintoshers out there making it work! More water-cooled power to you all!

    That being said, the DIYer in me is quietly pouting in the corner. Thanks for such a great site Koo and thanks to everyone else who contributes their voices and talents and knowledge. This site is one of the most important resources to my film making career!

    • haha, I bought myself a “completely maxed-out-to-the-walls 27″ iMac” also. Can’t wait!
      It really is the perfect middle ground. As far as the hack pro goes I agree with you.

  • You forgot to mention that you can hook TWO monitors up to these new imacs. Pretty cool.

  • 27″ body has 2 thunderbolts, capable of connecting 2 30″ monitors. See engadget….

    What I really want to know is what operational difference between 21.5″ gfx chips – the 6750m and 6770m – in fop, motion an AE?

    Can an anyone post about performance change in these apps with new iMac
    (currently have 1st gen silver 24″ iMac)

    Thx

  • Johnny Boy on 05.6.11 @ 2:53PM

    specs on this maxed out imac please?? I just got a 17 inch mbp and it’s paying for itself. never do i worry will i crash it. any problems and i just make a trip up the street to the apple store and they fix or replace. that’s worth the extra $1000 alone i paid. and the fact that all of my little cheap jobs can be done on the same day with INCLUDED software. love my mac.

    • Anthony Haden Salerno on 05.8.11 @ 1:44AM

      My iMac specs…

      27″ Display
      3.4 GHz Quad Core i7
      16 GB 1333 DDR3 SDRAM
      256 GB Solid State Drive (boot drive)
      2 TB Serial ATA Drive (media drive)
      AMD Radeon HD6970M 2 GB GDDR5 (graphics)
      Track Pad
      Apple Num Keyboard
      Apple Care
      I have goosebumps (included)

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