Showing posts with label imac. Show all posts
Showing posts with label imac. Show all posts

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Testing the 27 "iMac" Thunderbolt - part IV

It is indeed one of the great surprises of this model: despite the powerful processor and the summer climate of the test period, the temperature of the iMac Sandy Bridge has remained surprisingly low levels. Most of the time, CPU temperature stays around 30 to 35 °: the ventilation system is effective and extraction points at the top of the screen and behind the foot, once hot, now warm. When exporting Aperture, the temperature rises to 48 °. A video encoding where the four cores are at 100% for 25 minutes? 55 °. The fans always keep the composure of the machine without a voice, a sharp contrast to the previous generation and some MacBook Pro Sandy Bridge.

This discretion only to mask the raw performance of the iMac Core i7: they reach or exceed those of most of the range Mac Pro. This is not the first time we see the top of the range iMac rival the Mac Pro or exceed, but it's the first time that the difference is so great and strong.

The distinction is clear: the common tasks, the iMac Core i7 overwrite the entire Mac Pro. It drives not only its direct rival, the Westmere Mac Pro 2.4 GHz or eight cores (€ 3,400), but offers the luxury of making lousy Westmere Mac Pro 2.93 GHz twelve hearts, a machine ... € 8 300! We cannot even say it's SSD benefit: the twelve core Mac Pro was tested with excellent Toshiba 512 GB SSD So Sandy Bridge architecture that works wonders on the cuts in the Finder or the export Garage Band or Aperture. Match almost zero on the export music with XLD.

A test like Cinebench shows that Westmere Mac Pro keeps the advantage in raw power; the iMac is above the Nehalem Mac Pro. The entire iMac line is better than the Mac Pro graphics side, a habit now.


Testing the 27 "iMac" Thunderbolt - part III

Intel also provides the chipset of the iMac, a Z68 Series 6, replacing the P67 which had experienced numerous problems in the launch of the platform Sandy Bridge (SATA performance degradation). This chipset manages Smart Response, a new technology to use a SSD (up to 64 GB) as a cache for the hard drive, like the hybrid discs as the Seagate Momentus XT. Apple does not use this function: the SSD and hard drive of the iMac appear as two completely separate volumes. They are both connected to SATA III, allowing them to express themselves to their full potential.

The potential for the SSD is 240 Mb / s maximum throughput of 160 Mb / s of average flow. It's good but not dazzling, especially the hard drive of 1TB provided by Apple (a Western Digital Caviar Black 7200 RPM SATA III and 32 MB cache) is doing very well. The high density of its platters, SATA III interface and 32 MB cache allow it to reach speeds of around 120 Mb / s, with a fine linearity over large files.

Overall more efficient, the SSD, arranged in housing behind the SuperDrive, takes advantage of two areas: its access time and noise level. Fast, fast, fast, these are the three adjectives to describe what DSS quick fix on the MacBook Air and MacBook Pro, it is also on the iMac. While the scratch disk and is sometimes responsible for a certain delay, the SSD can boot the machine in a few seconds (12-14), forget the color wheel of death, and fluid in general operations, all in a royal silence accentuated by the presence of discrete fans.


Testing the 27 "iMac" Thunderbolt - part II

The presence of two Thunderbolt ports used to connect the iMac 27 "to two external displays. You'll have no problem to connect two Apple Cinema Display 27": Use two mini-Display Port cable (same connector as the Thunderbolt), and any ... work of 81 inches diagonally. If you use a screen of another brand or a former Apple screen, you will need an adapter: your adapter VGA, DVI, HDMI to Mini Display Port working perfectly. The only problem will come from screens 30 "you should use a dual-link adapter, an active housing costing hundreds of Euros.

Otherwise, the ports are used to little Thunderbolt: devices using this new standard, although promising, will not arrive until mid-summer. Intended primarily for professionals, promises to be cost prohibitive and limited uses for the moment, the interest of this new connector is limited to the general public.

This is not the case for other race horses of the new iMac. The processor is an Intel Core i7-2600, the fastest second-generation Core i7. It has four physical cores, identified as eight logical cores (hyperthreading) clocked at 3.4 GHz. When an application does not use all cores but needs power, the processor can disable cores dynamically to increase the frequency of the remaining cores: it can go up to 3.8 GHz on a heart (Turbo Boost). With all reasonable thermal envelopes in this range, 95 W is worth mention (32 nm etching).


Testing the 27 "iMac" Thunderbolt

Sandy Bridge processors, connectivity Thunderbolt, SSD are the elements that we begin to know well, together or separately, on many Mac. Put everything in a single iMac, and you get a real bomb.

The configuration we are testing today is the top of the line iMac: Screen 27 "of course, 4 GB of RAM DDR3 1333 MHz, an Intel Core i7 Quad 3.4 GHz, AMD Radeon graphics card HD 6970M with 1 GB of GDDR5 memory, hard drive 1 TB and 256 GB SSD could obviously put more RAM, disk drive 2 TB or the graphics card to 2GB, but as it stands, this configuration costs a whopping € 2699 - € 300 more than the Mac Pro "basic".

This iMac is first ... yes, an iMac. The problems therefore remain the same: a screen can be a bit too bright, an SD card reader a little too close to the SuperDrive ... This new generation, however, offers many small innovations: the webcam is now able to shoot HD 720p (even if the quality is more than average) while the USB 2.0 ports (4) FireWire 800 are joined by Thunderbolt ports. Also, the drives are now connected via SATA III (theoretical maximum of 6 Gb / s, the SuperDrive is in SATA II), and the WiFi card is connected to three antennas, which allows to use the iMac 2011 WiFi 802.11n three channels at 450 Mb / s.


Friday, June 10, 2011

Testing the iMac 27 "2.7 GHz Quad Core i5 Part.IV

Other option is the storage media. For 150 € you will grow to 2 TB of hard drive (150 €) or we may prefer only SSD storage with 256 GB (500 €). It is however very little in terms of storage for a high rate, especially if one collects photos and video. The more affluent will have the option to combine a hard disk with a SSD, which will host the system and applications (marriage of storage capacity and speed of execution) but must pay dearly again. Has 600 € to 1 TB + 256 GB SSD or 700 € for 2 TB + 256 GB SSD. These two combinations also currently lead delivery times higher, 4 to 6 weeks.

Finally, the choice is given (without influence on the final price) for a wired keyboard (with numeric keypad) or wireless (without keypad), a wired mouse or touches the Magic Mouse and Bluetooth or the touchpad and wireless Trackpad Magic. If we want both the Magic Mouse and Trackpad Magic, count an additional 69 €.

€ 200 separates this iMac model just below the screen with 21.5 ". On the essential characteristics, they are identical. To work with an iMac 27" (Core i7 Quad) since 2009 it is difficult to find complain about this diagonal screen. Some may find the unnecessary or cumbersome. It is true that this declination iMac does not accommodate a small office and there must be a minimum of recoil. In summary, if your budget allows and that the 27 "does not scare you, no hesitation in having this machine is a small bomb. Otherwise, the 21.5" reconcile more affordable prices (1149 and 1449 €) to possibly inflate the memory or hard drive) with quite satisfactory performance.

Testing the iMac 27 "2.7 GHz Quad Core i5 Part.III

Another point to note with this hard drive and more generally with this iMac, it works quietly. In a quieter environment, we launched a Flash playback 1080p on YouTube, iMovie and encoding a copy of a large folder of files, everything went without one is a particular annoyance came from fans or Disc. While an iMac 27 "Core i7 of 2009 will be much more remarkable for its breakdown.

This iMac also differs from its predecessors by adding a light sensor next to the webcam. It automatically alters the brightness of the screen. She is still alive; some coping with this very well, others will find it too strong to its maximum setting. So there is a new option to automatically adjust in System Preferences.

Another development is the presence of the connection to Thunderbolt. Except that Apple has not provided a connector on the iMac as 21.5 "but two. Sign it considers this series of iMac as suitable for certain professional uses where the Thunderbolt will make his debut, including video. But in the meantime, the two acquisitions have nothing to put in their mouths. We must remember that the use of this iMac as a screen of another Mac (target mode) is possible that using a Mac Thunderbolt too.

Like the 21.5 "color rendering of the webcam seemed more neutral, while newer machines like the last MacBook Pro 15" which in very good conditions of light, the image drew significantly on the magenta. Another detail, the design of the iMac has not changed, housing for SD cards is very near the slot SuperDrive, beware of evil manipulations' ...

At the time of ordering, the customer some options. Like go to 8 GB memory (16 GB max). If one spends most of his time on the Internet, the 4 GB may be enough. It is recommended that in contrast to climb to higher level when working with many applications open. We can happily adjust its configuration in a second time. Of the four memory slots, two are vacant, so we can add strips later, and look for any tariffs more competitive than the Apple Store (200 €). The installation itself of these bars is relatively easy. As long as you have the right screwdriver, simply remove the small grid in the screen and drag strips in their new homes. It's a matter of ten minutes.

Testing the iMac 27 "2.7 GHz Quad Core i5 Part.II

If one compares the first i5 Quad 2.7 GHz 2.5 GHz to previously tested on the iMac 21.5 ", the gains in performance, predictable, are confirmed in almost all applications. There is no exception with Aperture to export the same time. Elsewhere, the differences are sometimes marked. But with Blender (3D), iPhoto, XLD (audio encoding) or Starcraft at native resolution of the screen, the differences are smaller, if not minimal.

- Handbrake: 17 min 22 sec (2.7 GHz) against 19 min 01 s (2.5 GHz)
- Photoshop CS5 test (DHT): 2 min 45 sec instead of 3 min 04 s
- GarageBand: 1 min 32 sec 1 min 41 s cons
- IMovie: 8 min 59 sec instead of 9 min 15 sec
- Finder: 1 min 28 sec instead of 1 min 34 sec
- Stracraft: 65 fps in 1280x800 cons 50 fps

The finding is more vindictive to the very first iMac 27 "Quad. A high-end model features a 2.8 GHz Core i7 released in fall 2009. Our" small "i5 the distance in all cases Figure (some tests fail, we added some applications since then). Faced with the Mac Pro entry level, a Xeon 2.8 GHz Quad, same thing, this iMac is held upright, into the processor and testing Cinebench OpenGL.

- GarageBand: 1 min 32 sec 2 min 14 sec cons for Core i7 Quad 2009
- IMovie: 8 min 59 sec 9 min 27 s cons
- Photoshop CS5 test (DHT): 2 min 45 sec instead of 3 min 04 s
- Photoshop CS5 test (RAT): 42 s instead of 58 s
- Photoshop CS4 test (DHT): 3 min 55 sec instead of 5 min 19 sec
- Photoshop CS4 test (RAT): 45 seconds instead of 1 min 09 s
- QuickTime X: 42 s instead of 58 s

The hard drive is a Western Digital (WD1001FALS-403AA0) to 1 TB 7200 rpm. QuickBench test with large files to an average of 124 MB / s read / write. It's better than the 500GB model fitted to the 21.5 "which is turned around 112 MB / s. All this confirms, if need be, the idea that this family of iMac is perfectly complete semi-professional tasks like 3D, DTP or video or music. In the latter two areas, however, specialists rather demanding swear by the Mac Pro. But for the general public, the iMac 27 "have all the comforts.


Testing the iMac 27 "2.7 GHz Quad Core i5 Part.I

The model tested is the entry level of the new iMac 27 "Thunderbolt, with its standard configuration. This machine has sold € 1649 i5 Core 2.7 GHz quad core "Sandy Bridge" (i5-2500S), 4 GB RAM, 1 TB hard drive at 7200 rpm and a new graphics card Radeon HD 6770M with 512 MB of RAM. Defining its beautiful screen has not moved with 2560x1440. The working surface is always as comfortable if not impressive for a piece.

The iMac lineup includes, at the base, four models: two 21.5 "(i5 Quad at 2.5 or 2.7 GHz) and two 27" (i5 Quad 2.7 GHz or 3.1 GHz). Performance processor reported here should therefore provide good clues about what we can expect from the 21.5 "high end. Because there are many common points with our machine: processor, memory allocation, hard disk and graphics card. If found the note that 27 "too high or if its dimensions alone are a constraint, we can always turn to the iMac just below. Which may also receive a Core i7 Quad 2.8 GHz if you really want to push performance (allow € 200). Core i7 has this and more on the i5 that supports Hyperthreading (eight cores logic with some applications) in addition to Turbo Boost available to all iMac (able with this machine, on tasks not taking advantage of multicore to push a temporary heart increments, up to 3.7 GHz maximum).

In the standard tests, a mixture of consumer applications or not.

- Finder: zip archive of a file of 1.5 GB and 4500 elements.
- GarageBand '11: AAC encoding a 30-minute podcast.
- XLD: converting audio files from FLAC to AAC
- Photoshop CS4 and CS5 two scripts, one mainly composed of filters (DHT), the mixing filters and other common actions (RAT).
- IPhoto '11: export JPEG images.
- Aperture 3: export RAW images to JPEG.
- IMovie '11: 960x540 exports in a HD movie of 10 minutes.
- QuickTime X: export to iPhone format film obtained with iMovie.
- Handbrake: compression format file an iPhone HD 4.7 GB
- Blender 3D rendering of a file.
- Cinebench: measurement of an animation and an OpenGL 3D rendering.
- Starcraft 2: number of frames per second


Friday, April 1, 2011

No rewards from Apple at WWDC 2011

On the occasion of every WWDC, Apple presents awards for the best applications running on its OS. To claim the Apple Design Awards this year, Mac applications will necessarily figured on the Mac App Store.

At the edge of Mac OS Leo, although Apple operates a "Back to the Mac", the name of the conference in October which had unveiled the new Mac Book Air and Mac OS X 10.7.

Back to Mac in effect as if they had been set aside at WWDC 2010, they reappeared this year. "The future of Mac OS" will be announced, but it's also the Apple Design Awards of trophies rewarding the best applications of the year, the Mac is again under the spotlight.

The Design Awards were for the first time, forgot the applications for Apple computers last year. The symbolic impact of this predation was strong enough, some blaming Apple to lose interest.

"The error" is corrected for the WWDC 2011 as the Design Awards reward software for iMac, MacBook and company. But a new sine qua non has emerged to claim the title of best Mac application: be on the Mac App Store.

This condition, however, force the developers to make their exclusive application to the Apple Store. They are always free to offer their product for download on their own site. But to win an Apple Design Award, it is necessary that the software is available on the App Store for Mac.

The decision is somewhat surprising fact; there is a way like another to push developers to cozy up to the Mac App Store. The Cupertino Company is pushing its paperless shop for a while; the disappearance of the boxes in the Apple Store seems on track, while Mac OS Leo could be downloaded from the online store of the company Steve Jobs.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

The iMac

In January 1998, Jobs announced the first positive result for over a year. In May, he presented the next release of a new type of Mac: iMac, offering a compromise between power and money to satisfy basic users. He also explained that the project would be based not only MacOS X Rhapsody (NeXT technology) but also on MacOS 8.

The year 1998 was a year of profit for Apple iMacs are selling like hotcakes. In 1999, the output of the PowerMac G3 Blue and the announcement of the release of the iBook kept up the wave motion. Then came the announcement of the generation of G4 PowerMacs.

In January 2000, the release of iTools Internet tools dedicated, demonstrated the new strategy strongly oriented Internet firm to Apple, as Steve Jobs announced that he remained at the head of the company.