My Parents run their own business. After getting the iPad and after me getting my MacBook Pro they decided to change their older Windows computer into something more modern and up to date. I naturally recommended an Apple Item to them specifically an Apple iMac as they love the features on our family iPad and on my Apple MacBook. It was then decided that they would drive to Cambridge to a John Lewis store to pick it up and give it a bit of a test drive before making a purchase. We have to say we are, as with all Apple products- very happy with it!!!! I shall first talk about why we bought it from John Lewis and then talk about the speed of the machine
Why John Lewis??
There was a very good reason for buying it from a John Lewis department store- It was simply because they offer a free 2 year warranty. This prospect is oddly better than buying it from the Apple Store as they strangely only give a 1 year warranty. Another factor of buying it from John Lewis was because they offered a wireless Apple keyboard and the Apple Magic Mouse (as do all other stores, so there is no compromise on the extra warranty time) as well as the latest software update (Lion OSX.) (I have a review published on Ciao on Dooyoo about the Apple Magic Mouse if you want more information please feel free to read it and rate it) On the other hand there is a bad point about buying it fom a retailer rather than the Apple Store this is, you cannot- unlike the Apple Store configure your iMac at John Lewis- you have to add parts later. (E.G Upgrading the processors)
Speed; We are very impressed the insanely fast processors on the Apple iMac. Although our Internet speed is rather slow (An update is coming to our area soon however) I find the iMac is both impressive on the Internet as it is running Applications. Now most top end Windows PC's have a Dual Core processor. In contrast the iMac doubles this! It has 4 processors running at 2.7 GHZ running I5 processors. That is a total of 10.8GHZ of speedy power. For those who have no idea what I am banging on about a processor is the system in the computer that keeps the computer running at the highest speed possible. Therefore the bigger the number is after the "I" the better the processer will be (The top being I7) as it is with the amount of processors. The higher the "GHZ" number the better. The power then is not only impressive on paper it really does show it's speed. It can for example have many applications open at once and it has never crashed or slowed in any way. Internet browsing is smooth and quick. Which is made faster by the Multi touch Magic Mouse (Please see my review)
Design; I love the design of the iMac. It really is a quality product. The machine is an "All in one Desktop" meaning it is a single unit- containing the screen and the actual machine itself. It is therefore surprisingly compact considering the screen size is 21.5". It only requires one wire to power it up meaning less clutter on the desk keeping it neat and clean. The Mouse that came with it is also wireless as is the beautiful and sleek keyboard. The iMac is crafted from a solid piece of brushed and polished aluminum as is the iPad tablet and the MacBook Pro Laptop. However the aluminum design has a couple of drawbacks. For example the 4 USB stick drives are located at the back of the desktop- which can make it awkward to insert- and if you are not careful you may scratch the desktop. This leads me on to say you cannot remove scratches from the aluminum casing. The only way to rid them is by replacing the entire Unibody. (Apples name for aluminum casing) which is very expensive. I do however love the beautiful 21.5" High definition glass display of the iMac. Your photos for example on the iMac are crystal clear and are enhanced. I love the quality feel of the buttons of the wireless keyboard too. They feel smooth. Unlike a Windows keyboard they do not require much pushing to type- making it faster. I also love the backlighting of the keyboard too. Simple touches are also taken care off. For example the green light on the cap locks button (which informs you that Caps Locks are on) It is located ON THE CAPS button rather than somewhere else like it is on a Windows PC. Little things like that make the user feel special.
Manufacturer Support; My Father has been ringing Apple quite allot recently and tries to make full use of the complimentary 90 days technical questions support. Apple gives this, so the user who will have questions (as they are very different from a Windows PC) time to adjust from a Windows to an iMac. As mentioned we were allowed a free 2-year warranty, which we were very pleased with!
Ease Of Use; My parents were made aware that an iMac is a very different machine to a Windows machine. They were warned that they (as I already have Apple products and would be completely at home using it) actually at first they may very much dislike it, as sometimes the iMac can appear overly complicated as it is more advanced than other computers.. Hence the 90-day Apple support- who are known for their service! However now my parents have got used to the iMac my mother in particular loves it as much as I love my Apple MacBook Pro. She loves the Magic Mouse for example It can for instance, scroll webpages by swiping your 3 fingers across the mouse. She also loves the way you scroll downwards with the touchscreen like interface. She also loves how the emails all come together and she can see the previous conversations she has had with there customers as it would on Skype or Facebook for example when having a conversation with friends. My father also is a fan of the iMacs ease of use. He likes the way you can easily zoom in on business images, how he can crop photos etc. The "all screens" button is also fantastic because you can see all open pages open and switch between them. My mum also loves the easy searching methods of the Safari Internet browser.
Range of Extra Features; You get allot for your £1000 as you would expect. For starters we were given a free software update worth £20.99 (Lion OSX) This software has 250 extra features over the Snow leopard system- I shall give more detail on this later. One of the main benefits of switching to Apple is that Apple creates their own Virus Software. This means that they work together in perfect harmony, unlike a Windows PC were another company such as Norton build security for Windows. This means that an Apple iPad, iMac or a MacBook will NEVER get a virus. People who make viruses also prefer attacking Windows PC's as they are more common against an iMac for instance. I also love the many commands you can use to control your iMac. For example CMD (command) shift, 3 will screen shot anything you have on the screen. Commands like this simply make it easier to use. We also love the electrically operated Disk drive. Disks and Cd's come out of the machine at a touch of a button. The recent Lion upgrade another great feature. One of the most recent updates is a piece of software called iCloud. This can control all other Apple devices synchronised with the iMac (or another Apple product) So for instance if you were to write out an appointment on your iPhone on your calendar it would also be written on all of your other Apple products. Another great feature of the Lion update is this. If for example you synchronised all of your Apple products together and lost for instance your iPhone you could open the iCloud application and locate your iPhone on your iMac. Other great features on the iMac to mention is the Application Store. This allows the user to customise their iMac to suit them. For example if the user was into photography then they could download applications to assist him. In my parents case they use their iMac for business. There are many Applications for business users such as the business address book. One of the drawbacks of the Apple Application store however is most of the best applications cost money.
Value For Money; I have to say that although some may not be able to afford an iMac still feel it to be very good value for money. For one thing you will not have to pay for virus software- or pay for a new computer because of the result of viruses! I think it is also important to remember that the build quality of these machines is amazing. The graphics revolution of 1920 by 1080 pixels is also stunning. it was nice that the high quality Mouse and the Keyboard comes as standard too.
Reliability; Apple products are proven to be reliable and the latest iMac should prove to be equally reliable. It comes with a 1-2 year warranty depending were you buy it from. Apple's products rarely crash- and my products have proven that. This is again because of apples own made software.
Capacity of the Hardrive and the RAM
Our iMac came with a 500GB Hardrive which is expandable to 2 TB (which is 2000GB) However we found that 500GB is more than enough space for all our business files. The RAM or Random Access Memory is 4GB, which is also pretty good.
Instruction Manual; Because I have Apple products already and knew how to set them up we found no use for the manual, as I set the iMac up for family and business usage. However after a glance at it I felt the writing might be a little to small for some.
Cleaning; I would advise you to buy a microfiber cloth to keep the glass screen looking glossy. A soft duster will be fine for cleaning the Unibody and the wires.
Verdict; Hopefully this has given you an insight on why many such as my family are willing to pay for the Apple products- and not just for the name!!
This review has also been published on Ciao by jjcross
Today and today only you can buy this machine at a discounted price on the Apple Store (25th November 2011)
I first switched to apple OSX in 2007, and since then couldn't have been happier with it's stable, easy to use operating system. As a musician who also does a fair amount of video editing I realised that I needed a computer that could keep up with me. The imac is a very fast machine and does not struggle with any software. I've never seen a computer uncompress files and process audio at this speed. Games also run very smoothly, a problem I have had in the past with lower powered machines.
The speakers built in to the computer are very high quality for built in speakers, however I would still recommend buying external speakers for a fuller sound as they can be a tad tinny.
The screen is incredibly bright and I find I can often get away with having it on the lowest brightness setting without anything being too dark.
All of the prepackaged software is fantastic. The iLife suite is great fun for kids but is also surprisingly powerful once you get to know it. The app store makes finding reliable new software very easy and you can get your software from anywhere else if you prefer to.
There are a few downsides too. I find that if I am doing too many things at once, for instance, filming in photo booth and recording sound in garageband, then the machine begins to rapidly heat up and is almost painful to the touch. The machine hasn't broken as a result not can I see any damage or decrease in performance. My other main issue is the price, as apple computers aren't the cheapest of things. That being said, when you buy a mac you are paying for the seamless operating system, so I was happy to pay.
Had it not been for the fact that I use this desktop machine for work purposes, I would certainly never have experienced the luxury and amazement that comes with this product from Apple, as it certainly is insanely expensive! Just insane! I mean, give or take 1,280 pounds, that`s a lot of money, but then again, this product is superb, perhaps the very best desktop machine on the present market.
The first thing I noticed when gazing upon this beauty, was the magnificent 27` widescreen, which delivers every image and video clip to you in amazing quality, absolutely one hundred percent crystal clear and with amazing color balance! I have watched a movie or two on this machine, and I tell you, it`s an amazing and impressive experience, as the presentation of video and sound is just superb! The high resolution allows you to watch movies, pictures and all types of entertainment with great quality, and this is a machine that allows you to store enormous ammounts of music, videos, games, pictures and so on, this is a product great for both entertainment and work purposes!
This iMac is already installed with a software called Mac OSX, and after just a couple of minutes, I got a hang of using it, very easy and fun to learn! With a 4 GB RAM and a 1TB hard drive, this is a machine that delivers efficient and with superb quality, and all though the cost is enough to scare most people, the quality you receive is truly exeptional, and I will therefore recommend it with ease! As for the design, everything Apple delivers looks amazing and highly original, and this silver and black design makes this machine look every bit as expensive as it truly is! If one is able to look away from the insane price tag and onto the product itself, this is a machine that will impress and entertain you hugely, and for work purposes, this machine is the number one sollution! Five out of five stars, for sure!
The Apple iMac really is just a wonderful desktop machine that in my opinion is second to none. It delivers everything that you could possibly want from a desktop computer but in style. I found that the iMac is superior by far to any PC that I have ever tried and I am so glad that I finally made the move from Windows to Mac. I bought the iMac from Amazon for £1,318 which is a lot of money for a desktop computer, however, the quality of the computer is truly exceptional.
The iMac has an incredible spec together with very impressive performance which is ideal if you want to run games or more demanding applications such as Adobe CS5. It has 4GB of ram which is truly excellent and I found can handle any application with ease, it also has a core 2 duo 3.06GHz processor which is remarkably fast. I found that it handles multimedia tasks such as playing music, watching movies etc... with absolute ease. The iMac also has a 27'' screen with a very high resolution making watching movies and web browsing a much more pleasurable experience. The iMac also has a 1TB HD which is just unbelievable and can store all of the photo's, music, games that you could ever want. The spec of this iMac is therefore truly unmatched and delivers incredible performance.
The iMac comes preinstalled with Mac OSX snow leopard which I found very easy to get the hang of. Its a great operating system which is very efficient and has helped to make me more productive! Like the iMac itself the aesthetics is just supreme compared to any other PC I have seen.
Overall, this is an unbelievable machine which provides incredible performance but at a cost. It has many useful and impressive features which help to bring your overall computing experience to the next level!