New User Questions


macrumors regular
Original poster
Nov 3, 2007
Hi - This is my first post so I apologize if it is too long or in the wrong forum. I also apologize for posting in another forum - I realize after doing that perhaps I should have posted here.

After many years I am "returning from the dark side" and will be buying an iMac, probably the 20" version as the 24" version is likely too big for my bedroom desk. I've researched various components and programs, but since my focus (sorry!!) has been Dell/Windows for a while, I would appreciate any insight into the following:

My first question is the big one: I know that Apple upgraded the iMac 2x this year, and wondered if anything is rumored. Though waiting inevitably means I would be asking the same question in a few months....

As to my techie questions:

1. RAM. My plan is to upgrade the 1GB of Ram myself, given the expense of the Apple RAM. I've used Crucial in the past - are they still recommended? Also, am I right that I need not have matched pairs? I was thinking of buying 2GB to add to the 1GB that comes with the computer, rather than ditching the original 1GB.

2. ROUTER. I don't know if my Linksys router will work with the iMac, and just need something basic (I'll have the desktop, a printer and a Dell laptop in a not terribly large apt.). Is the Airport Express a good product? The iTunes feature is interesting but I'm not sure it really matters to me - given the size of my apt. I could just as easily dock my iPod to my LR stereo as stream from the computer in the bedroom. However, my router currently does not include a printer server and that aspect of Airport Express also appealed to me - I would be able to print from my Dell laptop to the printer off the network, without the iMac being turned on?

3. SOFTWARE. I may not initially install Windows, given that the few programs I care about I could continue to run on my laptop. If I do install Windows, am I right that if I connect through a Windows program to the Internet, I'll need to install antivirus, etc. - in other words, do Windows programs connect only through the Windows side/Internet Explorer? It's not a big deal for me to install Windows but at the same time one of the things I love about Macs are the fact that I don't need 10 antivirus/antisypware/antispam programs.

I use the following programs that I don't think or don't know if they run on Macs - if anyone has gotten them to run could you let me know? They are: Roboform (password manager), Replay Music (records streaming music), Rhapsody (music).

4. SOUND. Finally (for now - sorry for the long post), how is the sound quality from the iMac speakers? This is a bedroom computer, but I will listen to music and watch DVDs on it sometimes. I have a 2.1 Altec Lansing system now but it's not working well but if the built in speakers are good that would save me space. If external speakers are recommended what do people like?

Thanks so much!!! Ellen


macrumors 65816
Jul 17, 2007
Tokyo, Japan
1. Crucial is great. I personally prefer OWC (cheaper, high quality and good customer service, lifetime warranty). I personally don't think third party RAM trigger the Lock-ups. Yes, you can get the 2GB RAM alonside your 1GB Apple RAM.

2. Your Linksys router will work with the iMac, and yes, your Dell laptop will be able to use the printer connected to the Airport Express without the iMac turned on (because it's connected to the Airport Express). However if you already have a router I recommend that you don't get the Airport Express and get something that supposts the 802.11n standard.

3. Windows software are always on the Windows Partition. If a virus strikes it'll only damage the Windows partition. I don't see why you need Windows though. Mac OS X has a wealth of software. Safari can remember passwords. iRecordMusic is an OS X Streaming Music Recording software. Rhapsody works on OS X (iTunes is my favourite though)

4. For your bedroom, I don't think you need Surround Sound. The iMac's speakers have surprisingly good quality for what it is.

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