Today Apple introduced new versions of its very popular all-in-one iMac desktop computer. The new models boast incredible 21.5-inch and 27-inch LED-backlit displays with a 16:9 aspect ratio, ideal for watching – and creating – high definition movies, editing photos, or making any kind of digital media. The improved larger displays make it easier to multitask and handle everyday computer tasks.

These are the fastest iMacs ever, up to twice as fast as the previous models. The new iMacs feature faster Intel processors across the board, starting with a 3.06GHz Intel Core 2 Duo in the entry-level 21.5-inch model and moving all the way up to Intel Core i5 or i7 quad-core processors in the top of the line 27-inch iMacs.

Note that the 3.06 processor used in the new entry-level iMac was featured as the top-of-the-line processor in the just-discontinued 24-inch iMac, which was selling for $2199.99 earlier this week. That’s quite an upgrade!

The quad-core Intel Core i5 or Core i7 processor in the 27-inch iMac puts four processing cores on one chip, so data doesn’t have to travel far to get from core to core. This boosts application performance up to 2x over the previous-generation iMac. These quad-core processors connect memory directly to the processor, improving memory bandwidth up to 2.5x. This is unprecedented in an all-in-one computer.

The new iMacs feature more standard RAM (4GB, expandable to 16GB), and larger standard hard drives (500GB to 1TB).

These new iMacs also feature a built-in SD card slot for the first time ever, along with four USB 2.0 ports, one FireWire 800 port, headphone/optical digital audio port, audio line in, built-in microphone, iSight camera, and Mini DisplayPort output.

The new iMacs have a new seamless, precision-forged aluminum enclosure, redesigned speakers, edge-to-edge glass on the monitor, and a new tapered stand.

The new iMac is the first Mac to come standard with the Apple Wireless Keyboard and the new wireless Magic Mouse. The Magic Mouse is described below, but in brief it uses Multi-Touch technology to let you click, scroll, or swipe anywhere on its perfectly smooth, seamless top shell.

Going back to the display, the 21.5-inch iMac features a high resolution 1920-by-1080 pixel display (native HD) while the 27-inch iMac features a 2560-by-1440 pixel display offering 60 percent more pixels than the previous 24-inch model. Both 21.5 and 27-inch displays use IPS technology to deliver consistent color across an ultra wide 178 degree viewing angle.

The 21.5-inch iMac offers great graphics performance with the integrated NVIDIA GeForce 9400M graphics processor or the ATI Radeon HD 4670. The 27-inch iMac comes with dedicated high-performance ATI Radeon HD 4670 or, for top-of-the-line performance, the ATI Radeon HD 4850 graphics processor.

The 21.5-inch iMac starts at $1199.99 while the 27-inch model starts at $1699.99. The top-of-the-line Intel Quad-Core i5 costs $1999.99, with an option to custom-order Quad-Core Intel Core i7 for $200 more.

The 3.06GHz-equipped iMacs will be shipping very quickly, while the i5 and i7 equipped iMacs won’t be shipping until November.


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