Second Chance

I stopped by the Apple Store today to take a second gander at the new iMac… You know what? It’s still ugly… The iPod is sexy, though.

17 thoughts on “Second Chance

  1. even if you don’t like the design, do you at least appreciate that they are trying something different, something that isn’t a small beige box?

    just wondering…

    1. even if you don’t like the design, do you at least appreciate that they are trying something different, something that isn’t a small beige box?

      Well, that is a slippery slope…. Do I recognize that they are trying something different? Yes. Do I think that it is a complete failure of tasteful design? Yes.

      I am a big fan of many of Apple’s form factors (the current G4 towers are mighty sexy, and functional), but I really despise the idea of my monitor being tethered to my machine, and this only calls attention to it. At least with the old iMac, you could say that the computer was the same size as most monitors…. now this thing you have the “candy dot” part that sits on your desk, the silver metal dildo that connects to the screen. They have no justification for tethering the monitor to the machine…

      I can appreciate that people are trying to push the limits of what is a good-looking PC. IMHO, however, this is a failed attempt. I would choose the beige box over the new iMac.

      1. interesting example;

        the new imac takes the niche that the old imac took; it’s not going for any other niche.

        It takes less space on your desk than the old imac, and lets you position the screen a lot easier than the old imac. Any way you look at it, you’d have a base of some sort for the screen, and if it were seperate, it would require a base somewhere else, why not integrate the two together?

        The old imac never had a detached screen, so why should this?

        I suppose, they could have gone to an extreme, and put the screen on an arm like a real desk lamp, which you clamp to your desk, then you put the ‘dot’ somewhere else; on a shelf, in a desk drawer, etc.

        1. The old imac never had a detached screen, so why should this?

          Because it was a bad idea then too. The new “dot” is way to big to be a “base”; If I want a flat panel, I want to have lots of deskspace real estate…. I don’t want 6″ of dot messing with it…. The clamp idea you propose might be neat, however…

          I just don’t want my computer on my desk, and it’s as simple as that. When I get a flat panel, I will either mount it to the wall or get one with as little a footprint as possible.

          1. I personally don’t see the old imac (or the old compact macs for that matter) as being a bad idea… If you’re going to have a CRT on your desk, why not shove the computer in it as well; that way you don’t need to have the tower.

            Granted the imac has its problems; overheating on some models, lack of expansion, etc. but if all that you need is in that box, there’s no reason to want or need a seperate tower… imo.

            The new imac, i think, gives you more deskspace than most flatpanel displays out there… most of the others have multiple legs holding up the non-positionable screen, not to mention the cable going to the cpu which sits elsewhere.

            I kinda like the mounting to the wall solution; although that means that you have to be sitting near a wall to do that…

            I wonder if someone will take their iMac and throw the screen on the end of an adjustable lamp arm, and extend the monitor ribbon… hrm. that would add a lot of noise to the screen, methinks.

            imo; the new imac is a unique, elegant solution to the ‘compact mac’ idea. I don’t buy into the “let every part be true to itself” bull, but i like the way it looks, and i like the flexibility that it offers… :]

            don’t mind me; i’m just babbling.

            1. The new imac, i think, gives you more deskspace than most flatpanel displays out there… most of the others have multiple legs holding up the non-positionable screen, not to mention the cable going to the cpu which sits elsewhere.

              I disagree with this… the ones I have seen with multiple legs have them sticking out underneath frame of the monitor itself… I have also seen an “easel” arrangement, but I don’t think I like this much at all…

              The flatpanels I have been looking at (yes, I am fixin’ to replace my monitor after 7 years of duty) have had very moderate bases, but again, I am really interested in affixing it to the wall. :)

              hrm. that would add a lot of noise to the screen, methinks.

              Well that depends… Most of the flatpanels used (at least in the PC realm) use a digital connection (DVI) between the video card and monitor… This is supposedly much more tolerant to noise and allows longer runs for the cable. If Apple used something like this, noise might not be too bad.

              imo; the new imac is a unique, elegant solution to the ‘compact mac’ idea.

              I just don’t see it as compact… If they made the arm “detachable”, they could have a simple, small weighted-base, or a clamp… Instead it is the awkward looking mess.

              1. I disagree with this… the ones I have seen with multiple legs have them sticking out underneath frame of the monitor itself… I have also seen an “easel” arrangement, but I don’t think I like this much at all..

                I don’t understand what you’re disagreeing with… what you’re describing is what i was trying to describe. The iMac design lets you have the base not specifically directly underneath the monitor, giving you back that space on your desk… not to mention the ability to move the screen away to regain that space as well. Granted; the ‘base’ footprint is just moved back from underneath the screen to be the back of the desk where you put the base station, but that space is recovered.

                Well that depends… Most of the flatpanels used (at least in the PC realm) use a digital connection (DVI) between the video card and monitor… This is supposedly much more tolerant to noise and allows longer runs for the cable. If Apple used something like this, noise might not be too bad.

                Understood; but just because it’s a digital signal doesn’t mean it’s not susceptible to noise. try a long SCSI cable on a scsi scanner. the images will be munged. There’s a chance for noise… then again, if you shield it; like if you were to put it in a metal conduit like is currently used in the ‘arm’, you might be fine… then again, there might be enough signal degradation along the extension to make the image dark, or wrong. *shrug* i’ve never worked with stuff like that to know for certain, but i would think that they didn’t use high power/cable length drivers in that thing, since they know the configuration…

                I just don’t see it as compact… If they made the arm “detachable”, they could have a simple, small weighted-base, or a clamp… Instead it is the awkward looking mess.

                Then you’d be left with putting the cpu somewhere… why not integrate it into the weighted base? It seems like the correct solution to me…

                and by ‘compact mac’ i meant their line going back to the Plus/SE/Classic/etc, through the iMac… an all-in-one machine.

                I understand that the new iMac idea doesn’t work for your purposes… then again, you can always get a G4 tower and a flatscreen monitor to hang on your wall… or take apart the new iMac. ;)

                1. I don’t understand what you’re disagreeing with…

                  I am disagreeing with the size of the base on the iMac’s monitor. There is no need for it to be that large…. If the computer was seperate, it could have the kind of weighted bases that some of those “arm” desklamps have. But since they had to integrate the monitor and computer, they tied themselves into this needless basketball hemisphere.

                  Understood; but just because it’s a digital signal doesn’t mean it’s not susceptible to noise.

                  Oh, I know this, but the DVI standard allows for cables up to 6 feet long (and I have heard that it actually supports more like 15 feet, but I have never found this reliably documented).

                  Then you’d be left with putting the cpu somewhere… why not integrate it into the weighted base? It seems like the correct solution to me…

                  Again, there is no need for the base to be so large…. That is why it isn’t the correct solution.

                  I understand that the new iMac idea doesn’t work for your purposes… then again, you can always get a G4 tower and a flatscreen monitor to hang on your wall… or take apart the new iMac. ;)

                  First of all, I definately won’t buy a computer that I need to disassemble. Second of all, while I love the G4’s case design (esp. the motherboard tray), I refuse to pay that much for one of Apple’s machines.. On top of that I would have to run OSX, which is very anti-appealing to me.

                  I would give OSX a partition if they allowed it to run on Intel hardware, but until then, I will be saving money…

  2. First of all, I definately won’t buy a computer that I need to disassemble.

    I think that more pedestrian users of a computer would see that same statement apply from a different angle– why would they want to buy a machine that they needed to put together to be useful/disassemble to move. Seperate displays and computers -require- extra cables to mess around with… it’s just one more thing to confuse the user. Obviously- you aren’t in the iMac’s target audience. You’ve no problem connecting, configuring, etc. etc. etc. I think the iMac’s target audience consists of people who even have trouble plugging things in- and want this kept to a minimum. At least that’s my take on it.

    So- since it’s a design goal to keep the display and the machine together- it makes sense to utilize how lightweight new lcd displays are in order to solve design problems of the old iMac. A huge lump on your desk that you can’t adjust and that you need to huddle over. I’d much rather have an adjustable screen that I don’t need to rearrange my desk to move. I can’t say I was a fan of the old iMac’s design, but this is an improvement.

    1. But it doesn’t change the fact that it is ugly…. I realize I am not in the target audience, but that is irrelevant.

      I would buy 20 old iMac before I spent a dime on the new one. It is hideous.

        1. I have to say that the new one definately looks sleeker than the older ones, but then again I was never a big fan of the whole candy color thing. But they did get it right for a target audience that consists mainly of high school/college girls and their trendy mom’s who find cute more important than useful. Or maybe I’m just bitter from working at best buy during that first imac christmas when all we had was orange, and that color was the only color nobody wanted. The software selection was great too as long as you didn’t need anything it didn’t come with.

    1. Re: Just a thought

      I would agree with you had I not given up on SCSI in my workstation…. I fought for SCSI for a long time, and it is certainly valuable in servers, but for workstation and under, I don’t see the value.

      1. Re: Just a thought

        I went from a SCSI CDRW to an IDE one by the same manufacturer. Now, when I burn a CD, my whole UI slows down in both Win2k and XP and Easy CD or Nero use 100% of my CPU. I don’t consider offloading disk I/O processing to a co-processor just a server advantage.

        1. Re: Just a thought

          Get a better computer or a better IDE controller. I have no such trouble whatsoever…. And you may say “But Sean, you have two processors”, but I argue that, while yes, my cpu utilization does go up, it is in the ballpark of 10%, the same as I saw with SCSI.

          In combination with that, I don’t see ANY effect on the UI or the overall performance of the machine.

          I don’t consider offloading disk I/O processing to a co-processor just a server advantage.

          And I don’t consider it worth such a worthless premium as witnessed with SCSI disks.

        2. Re: Just a thought

          And in addition, you apparently didn’t read my response. I said it wasn’t a VALUE for the workstation or lower. I never, ever, said that there weren’t performance gains to be wrought from SCSI, and as a standard it certainly makes more sense, but it simply isn’t anywhere remotely cost effective. I would rather take the 200-400 bucks (for disks, drives, and controller) I would pay for the “SCSI Premium”, and instead buy well-performing ATA/100 drives and some really badass processors….

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