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View Full Version : Computer Specs and Apple Displays


Blink7551
Jan 26, 2005, 09:31 PM
Mac mini
1.42GHz PowerPC G4
256MB DDR333 SDRAM
ATI Radeon 9200 with 32MB DDR video memory
80GB Ultra ATA hard drive
Combo drive
DVI or VGA video output
AirPort Extreme and Bluetooth optional

iMac
20-inch widescreen LCD
1.8GHz PowerPC G5
512K L2 cache
600MHz frontside bus
256MB DDR400 SDRAM
NVIDIA GeForce FX 5200 Ultra
64MB DDR video memory
160GB Serial ATA hard drive
Slot-load SuperDrive


What does all of this mean? I understand some of it, but no one has really explained to me what all of this means. Airport is wireless capabilities for the internet, etc. But what is Bluetooth?

Also, why would I buy a 20 inch Apple Cimena Display if I can get one for hundreds of dollars less money thats the same size? Is Apple ripping us off?

Thanks.

Bear
Jan 26, 2005, 09:45 PM
Bluetooth is a wireless interface. You can hook up some peripherals that way (mouse, keyboard, headset) also some phones and PDA devices have bluetooth and can sync data via bluetooth.

As for the Apple display, I'm not saying the Apple display is a great price, but you need to compare the features and specs of two 20" displays. For instance, Apple's has a digital input and is widescreen. You also need to check resolution, brightness, contrast ratio and possibly viewing angle.

Not all LCDs are the same. some only have analog inputs (and cost less and don't look as good). So, just saying it's a 20" LCD is not very meaningful.

Makosuke
Jan 26, 2005, 09:49 PM
I'm assuming it's only the things in bold that you're unclear on.

1.42GHz PowerPC G4 / 1.8GHz PowerPC G5 refer to the processor, the computer's brain and the most important part for speed. In general, the larger the GHz number the faster the processor, although a G5 is in general better than a G4 and faster "per GHz". For average use, though (unless you're doing video editing, basically), either of those will be fine for you.

The stuff about L2 cache and frontside bus are interesting technical details, but they're really not that important. They fall into the category of "if you don't already know what this is, you probably don't care".

256MB DDR333 SDRAM/256MB DDR400 SDRAM are just detailed descriptions of how much RAM (working memory) the computers have. More is better, but other than that it doesn't really matter to most people. 256MB is, however, pretty skimpy--I would definitely recommend getting 512MB in either case.

ATI Radeon 9200 with 32MB / NVIDIA GeForce FX 5200 Ultra with 64MB are the graphics processor (brand, model, and amount of RAM available for displaying complex images in games). For non-game use, either is more than enough for the average user, but if you enjoy 3D games, the NVIDIA card should be noticably faster.

80GB Ultra ATA Hard Drive / 160GB Serial ATA hard drive are talking about the type of hard drive available for storage. The iMac has a MUCH faster hard drive than the Mini (though those numbers don't actually tell you that), and twice as much storage space. That said, either will probably be fine for the average uers--music, documents, and a reasonable number of photos. Only a really huge photo collection (tens of thousands of pictures) or a lot of videos/video editing will use up more than 80GB.

DVI or VGA video output -- this just means that you can hook up any standard type of monitor to it. DVI is used for higher-end digital flat-panel monitors, and VGA for budget flat panels and older CRT monitors.

And bluetooth is a wireless format used for "little doodads", not networking (the internet) like Airport. Wireless keyboards and mice, remote controls, connecting to your cell phone, downloading stuff to your PDA, that kind of thing.

And yes, Apple's external 20" monitor (not the one built into the iMac) is pricey, but it's also a VERY nice screen. Probably more expensive than some alternatives, but to a degree you get what you pay for. Whether it's worth it depends on how picky you are.

Hope that all helped.