Thursday, October 22, 2009

iMac Intel 27" Teardown: essential reading for would-be customers

Andy M has ordered his 27" Nehalem Blu-Ray and USB-3 free* iMac from (no tax) Amazon.

I'm tempted. My 10 yo has done his part, ranting to his mother about how slow the G5 is. On the other hand, I just know the Nehalem stuff will be hotter than hell, slower than expected, and buggy to boot.

The iMac Intel 27" Teardown from iFixit is helping me decide if I feel lucky. For example, the RAM is easy to upgrade, but the hard drive is untouchable. That means when the drive fails (mine have 2.5 year lifespans) the replacement will require a trip to an Apple Store.

* I suspect Blu-Ray licenses have some very evil aspects - not only on cost and complexity, but with IP and functionality implications as well. Those implications extend to the operating system
... Apple lacks software support for playing copy-protected Blu-ray movies, so if you install a Blu-ray drive, you'll have to boot into Windows to enjoy the show....
This machine is designed to take high quality video output from an copy-protected DRM compliant Blu-Ray.

More than Blu-Ray I'd love to see USB 3, but I remember the introduction of similar standards. The first versions rarely work properly, you usually need to wait a year after initial products before you get something that works. In the meanwhile the new tech displaces something that does work (like Firewire).

Update: Andy tells me the current Intel iMacs have the same hard drive configuration. I've been spoiled by the wonderfully serviceable G5 iMac.
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