27' iMac and Magic Mouse First Impressions

brasscat

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jun 9, 2007
336
0
Dallas, Texas
Last night I picked up a 27" dual core 2 iMac from the only Apple store that I could find in the Dallas area that had stock... My impressions, for those who are interested:

1. The 27" screen is surprisingly beautiful. The pixel density is higher than my 24" iMac I'm replacing, and the LED backlight really makes everything brighter and less yellow. Once you spend any time with this screen, everything else seems technologically ancient.

2. I'm very critical/fussy about what mouse I use. The new Magic Mouse looked uncomfortable, and I didn't know if gesturing on the face made much sense. Well, as I played with the included Magic Mouse, I'm starting to feel this is the best mouse I've ever owned. The right/left clicking, scrolling, tracking is superb, and the lack of buttons and scroll wheels actually is an improvement -- this mouse is forgiving over finger placement and more natural to use. It has just the right amount of weight to it as well, it's not a cheap/hollow feeling mouse.

3. I was surprised to discover the wireless keyboard and mouse come pre-sync'd to the computer, with batteries already installed. It's just a matter of turning the iMac on, and then turning on the power of the mouse and keyboard and you're set.

4. This was the first time I used Time Machine to move information over to the new iMac. Took about 45 minutes and worked pretty much flawlessly. Some settings for web programming, like the php.ini config file, didn't make it for some reason. Some settings in preferences were turned off. But other than that, it was exceptionally easy to import my large, specifically configured environment to the new iMac.

5. The keyboard looks the same as the previous wireless keyboard, BUT IT'S NOT. I played around with syncing some identical-looking Apple wireless keyboards, and there is extra visual queues when sync'ing the new keyboard vs. the old; Basically, there's something different with the new keyboards that allows simpler syncing with bluetooth than previous (identical looking) wireless keyboards.

6. Running Windows 7 in Parallels (64-bit) is noticeably faster, seems like 30% faster, on my 27" 3 gig iMac, compared to my 24" 2.4 gig.

7. It's cheaper to get these iMacs to 8 gigs of ram, as there is now four slots of memory. 4x2 gig chips is dramatically cheaper than 2x4 gig chips.

Criticisms:

1. The pixel density and size of screen make window menus look tiny, and there's no way to increase that without sacrificing baseline resolution. I keep finding myself increasing font size in programs like Safari and iTunes to make the text larger and easier to read against my 39 year old eyes.

2. Even though the mouse travels easily across my desk, it's noisier than most mice when moving it. My desk is wood with leather inlay, so moving the mouse across the leather is about twice as loud as the bluetooth Microsoft mouse it's replacing.

Other tidbits:

- The iMac came installed with OSX 10.6.1
- The special software for the Magic Mouse was pre-installed
- The power cord make a "click" when it's in place in the back of the iMac. My old iMac didn't have that.
- These iMacs use 1067 DDR3 ram, same as current generation MacBook Pros.

I hope some of you find this information interesting. If you've been waiting for the next big revision, this is it.

:D
 

GGJstudios

macrumors Westmere
May 16, 2008
44,360
701
Great review! By the way, it's "Magic Mouse", not "Super Mouse". While it's not a big deal, I'm sure some will be saying, "Apple released TWO new mice? Where can I get a Super Mouse? Got any pics?" :D
 

brasscat

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jun 9, 2007
336
0
Dallas, Texas
Great review! By the way, it's "Magic Mouse", not "Super Mouse". While it's not a big deal, I'm sure some will be saying, "Apple released TWO new mice? Where can I get a Super Mouse? Got any pics?" :D
LOL thanks, I corrected the original post. Maybe the next Apple mouse will be called that.... (trademarking it now...) ;)
 

benlee

macrumors 65816
Mar 4, 2007
1,236
1
I'm looking forward to getting an iMac, but she who must be obeyed says we have to wait until her 2008 MBP it ready to ditch, which (un)fortunately may be quite some time.

Do you think the 27" is too large? I don't watch movies (save for clips) on my computer.
 

plinden

macrumors 68040
Apr 8, 2004
3,969
3
1. The pixel density and size of screen make window menus look tiny, and there's no way to increase that without sacrificing baseline resolution. I keep finding myself increasing font size in programs like Safari and iTunes to make the text larger and easier to read against my 39 year old eyes.
Interesting you say that. It worried me (not that I'm getting one any time soon) since I have 44 year old eyes. But to put it into context, the pixel density of the 27" iMac is about 109 pixels/inch compared to 110 pixels/inch in my 15" MBP, which I have no problems with (wife complains about small text though - odd thing is, her 13" MB has higher pixel density, so it must be something about the difference in screen size affecting her reaction to it). Your 24" inch iMac was 83 pixels/inch.
 

GGJstudios

macrumors Westmere
May 16, 2008
44,360
701

js81

macrumors 65816
Dec 31, 2008
1,199
16
KY
Hey OP:

How do you feel about the Core 2 Duo 27"? I really want to get one to replace my again 17" iMac, but I really wanted the i5. Does the Core 2 feel plenty snappy? I imagine that 8GB of RAM would sure help, compared to my measly 3GB now. I could swing the base 27" a lot sooner than the upgraded one.
 

asudog1080

macrumors newbie
Sep 2, 2009
4
0
One of the main reasons i have overlooked the iMac in the past has been the fact that you could not hook up an external input source to it.
With the new mini display port input included it sounds like that issue may be a thing of the past.
The only problem is my work machine is a thinkpad T60 which i connect via RGB output to my Samsung 22 "LCD monitor . With the amount of spreadsheets etc I work with having a dual screen desktop is impossible to live without.
Currently i have my Macbook Pro connected to the DVI input of this monitor and switching back and forth between sources is simple.
Would it be possible to connect an analog connection to this display port input ? My feeling is that it is probably not possible :mad:
Thanks.
 

brasscat

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jun 9, 2007
336
0
Dallas, Texas
Hey OP:

How do you feel about the Core 2 Duo 27"? I really want to get one to replace my again 17" iMac, but I really wanted the i5. Does the Core 2 feel plenty snappy? I imagine that 8GB of RAM would sure help, compared to my measly 3GB now. I could swing the base 27" a lot sooner than the upgraded one.
I was thinking about the i5 but I'm frankly too impatient to wait until November when it ships. The 3 gig Core 2 Duo seems very snappy. So far, very pleased. I'll be very interested to see the benchmarks when all versions are actually out in the wild.
 

js81

macrumors 65816
Dec 31, 2008
1,199
16
KY
I was thinking about the i5 but I'm frankly too impatient to wait until November when it ships. The 3 gig Core 2 Duo seems very snappy. So far, very pleased. I'll be very interested to see the benchmarks when all versions are actually out in the wild.
Yeah, me, too.

Conventional wisdom says that a higher clock speed (but less cores) will be faster in apps that aren't designed for multi-core processors. However, I though Snow Leopard and Grand Central were supposed to alleviate some of that? I don't do a lot of video encoding or anything like that, so I think the C2D may suffice for me, too.
 

mscriv

macrumors 601
Aug 14, 2008
4,911
586
Dallas, Texas
Nice review. Just curious, which Apple store in the DFW did you have to go to? I would love to go play with one of the display models. :D
 

brasscat

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jun 9, 2007
336
0
Dallas, Texas
Nice review. Just curious, which Apple store in the DFW did you have to go to? I would love to go play with one of the display models. :D
Stonebriar Mall location.. They actually had none on display yet as of last night, but they had stock allocated for display, so I assume the displays are up today.
 

rdowns

macrumors Penryn
Jul 11, 2003
27,345
12,408
I played with one at the Apple Store last night. I can not stress what a gorgeous machine this is. The LED screens are amazing. Made the 30" ACD look washed out.

They don't have an quad cores yet but the C2D was most definitely snappy™.
 

Fiete5401

macrumors regular
Oct 16, 2009
150
0
Germany
Conventional wisdom says that a higher clock speed (but less cores) will be faster in apps that aren't designed for multi-core processors.
The problem lies a bit deeper. The C2Ds are mobile versions and the i5/i7 are real desktop processors. I'm not sure if the rule you quoted will apply here. Won't touch any money before there are several real world comparisons between the different 27"-models.

EDIT: It looks like only the 3.06 GHz C2D is a 'mobile' version. The 3.33 GHz C2D uses 6 MB L2-Cache so it has to be a desktop version too. That makes a comparison to the i5 interesting again.
 

uuaschbaer

macrumors regular
Aug 31, 2009
193
13
Criticisms:

1. The pixel density and size of screen make window menus look tiny, and there's no way to increase that without sacrificing baseline resolution. I keep finding myself increasing font size in programs like Safari and iTunes to make the text larger and easier to read against my 39 year old eyes.
I wonder whether the control+scroll zoom function could be a workable alternative to increasing fonts. I presume there is a difference, but I never owned a mac so I could be saying something revealing preposterous ignorance.
I'd say this could prove itself to be a quite serious problem with future pixel-dense screens until the OS is altered.
 

brasscat

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jun 9, 2007
336
0
Dallas, Texas
I wonder whether the control+scroll zoom function could be a workable alternative to increasing fonts. I presume there is a difference, but I never owned a mac so I could be saying something revealing preposterous ignorance.
I'd say this could prove itself to be a quite serious problem with future pixel-dense screens until the OS is altered.
I agree - I'm thinking Apple realizes this, which is why they're investing in developing resolution independence into the OS. Still some work to do. I think zooming might drive you crazy after a while -- another standard needs to be developed.

An interesting note, I was fiddling with Windows 7 Ultimate inside Parallels today and it was very easy to upsize everything so the words were uniformly clear and larger without bumping up resolution settings. That's one point to Windows 7.
 

cbster

macrumors member
Feb 24, 2008
69
0
Orange County
OP - Question for you....

On my previous iMac i hated the fact that you could not dim the screen that much ie- at night time my eyes were hurting.

On the new 27" LED does the screen dim down as much as - say - a MacBook Pro?
 

skye12

macrumors 65816
Nov 11, 2006
1,212
2
Austin, Tx
As nice as these sound, the new Mac Pro's can't be far behind.
But the i5/7'swill certainly take some of that business now.
 

Cboss

macrumors 6502
Dec 11, 2008
387
0
Colorado
OP - Question for you....

On my previous iMac i hated the fact that you could not dim the screen that much ie- at night time my eyes were hurting.

On the new 27" LED does the screen dim down as much as - say - a MacBook Pro?
I had the same problem with my MacBook. The program Screenshade lets you dim the display as much as you desire. And, it's free. :)
 

AppleMatt

macrumors 68000
Mar 17, 2003
1,779
9
UK
What are the chances of a photo comparison of size? For example the 24" directly in-front of the 27"?

:)

AppleMatt