Ports on Front?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Fahrwahr, Jun 15, 2007.

?

Should the iMac (and possibly the Mac mini) have a few ports on the front?

  1. Absolutely! It's foolish to have to reach around back for the sake of aesthetics.

    5 vote(s)
    16.7%
  2. It wouldn't hurt as long as Apple pulls it off with grace.

    9 vote(s)
    30.0%
  3. No. Apple's clean style matters more than port accessibility.

    10 vote(s)
    33.3%
  4. If you want ports on the front, buy a Mac Pro!

    6 vote(s)
    20.0%
  5. I don't use the ports I have.

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  1. Fahrwahr macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 23, 2007
    Location:
    Southeastern U.S.
    #1
    One of the trends I'm noting in my computer labs is that the USB flash drive has become almost ubiquitous for students wanting to bring files from home or take files with them. This does not bode well for the design of Apple's two consumer / education grade desktops, the iMac and the Mac mini. On the Mac mini, the issue can be mitigated by a monitor with built-in USB ports (the older Dell models in the labs sit on the floor, so the monitor USB ports are a must), but on an iMac? Having to buy a hub so you don't have to reach around back to plug in a flash drive is pretty annoying. What do y'all think?
     
  2. Big-TDI-Guy macrumors 68030

    Big-TDI-Guy

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2007
    #2
    I think a concealed door that has a NICE fit (not some cheese-ball plastic flap). Say with Audio Output, 2 USBs and a FW800 could work nicely. Stash the remote in there too, I NEVER stick mine to the side without knocking it off. Have one of the USBs angled DOWN at 33 degrees, so you could put an "average" sized USB flash drive in there and close the flap. Make it somewhat opqaue to let the flash-drive light through.

    Meh, why not throw in a flash-card reader too.

    And a power switch on the front, say a capacitive touch-control, maybe part of a shiny apple logo.

    While you're at it, give me a DVI INPUT to make use of my 24" LCD -- MAKE IT MANDATORY if they offer a 30" Imac.

    At the very least, give me more than 3 USB ports on the back.

    That cover my 4 cents?
     
  3. iBookG4user macrumors 604

    iBookG4user

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2006
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    #3
    I don't mind, it's not like I plug USB devices in that often. So it didn't bother me too much when I was using an iMac.
     
  4. iMeowbot macrumors G3

    iMeowbot

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2003
    #4
    Huh. Between the spare USB port on the keyboard and the card reader built into the printer, it really hasn't been an issue.
     
  5. Big-TDI-Guy macrumors 68030

    Big-TDI-Guy

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2007
    #5
    Well, being that the keyboard USB is only 1.0 (at least mine are) and I'm one of those freaks who likes laptop keyboards, I have a different one without any USBs on it.

    Besides, 3 USBs on the apple is pretty weak. I mean keyboard / mouse / printer and I-phone it gets a little short. I can't be the only one that has more than 3 USB devices.
     
  6. Fahrwahr thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 23, 2007
    Location:
    Southeastern U.S.
    #6
    For self-powered peripherals, it might not be a problem, but when I try to plug my USB flash drive into the keyboard, I get this message:

    USB Low Power Notice

    The USB device cannot operate because it needs more power than is available.
    To correct this problem you can:
    1) Plug the device into an electrical outlet if it has a power cord.
    2) Unplug the device and plug it into another USB port on your computer or other device that is plugged into a power cord.​
     
  7. rainydays macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2006
    #7
    I'd rather not have ports on the front or even on the side of the iMac. The only place that would be OK with me besides the back is the bottom.

    Besides, if the lack of USB ports is such a big problem, there's always hubs, even some rather nice looking ones.
     
  8. iToaster macrumors 68000

    iToaster

    Joined:
    May 3, 2007
    Location:
    In front of my MacBook Pro
    #8
    I've never been that much of a fan of the iMac or Mini, I LOVE POWER!!!!!! I don't hate them, but if I had one, I'd say it would be going the way of my MB: about to be replaced by something with the "Pro" in it. I think that Apple should put some ports on the side, that would be nice for the iMac, and the Mini could stand to get them on the front, that would be nice, and if they'd only put Xeons in those:D
     
  9. iMeowbot macrumors G3

    iMeowbot

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2003
    #9


    So get a better flash drive ;) Yeah, I know that there are plenty of flash drives made from power-hungry parts, but we've been pretty lucky for the few occasions where we use 'em.​
     
  10. puckhead193 macrumors G3

    puckhead193

    Joined:
    May 25, 2004
    Location:
    NY
    #10
    i wouldn't mind it if as i find it a pain in the butt to reach around the back for my USB drive. So i don't have to do that i have the extension cable from the keyboard plugged into a usb port so i can just plug it in with ease...
     
  11. rainydays macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2006
    #11
    You mean like the MacBook Pro? It's pretty much the same thing as the iMac powerwise.
     
  12. Fahrwahr thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 23, 2007
    Location:
    Southeastern U.S.
    #12
    I am looking into hubs (for my MacBook -- not enough ports to go around), but from the looks of the reviews, I'd better be darn sure I get a good one. The cheaper ones either overheat or don't provide enough power to all the devices (usually the low-end ones are not self-powered). I don't know… a USB drive plugged into a port on the front just seems more elegant than having a drive plugged into a hub with a cable plugged into the port.

    I didn't think about the side. I'd almost consider the side of the iMac "the front" since there's so little side to it! Still, you might run into problems if a desk's hutch is tight around the iMac -- no room to maneuver a USB stick into the side.

    I didn't really think the "buy a Mac Pro" option would get as many votes as it's getting -- people seem to strongly disagree with giving consumers more flexibility at existing price points, whether it mean altering the existing enclosures or the whole midrange tower concept.

    Hmm… I knew that the higher-priced drives would perform better speedwise, but I didn't think they'd also be less power-hungry. The drive I referenced before is a Kingston 4 GB DataTraveler (I bought for $40 last month at Circuit City -- naturally it's down to $35 now), and I was under the impression that Kingston is a pretty high-quality manufacturer, even if the drive itself is on the low end of its lineup. I was just glad to find a reasonably-priced higher-capacity flash drive without U3.
     
  13. iMeowbot macrumors G3

    iMeowbot

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2003
    #13
    I really don't know if it's a cost/quality thing or just some controller chip deal that's unrelated to price. There is a little SD reader floating around here that doesn't like the keyboard power, and it even complains about that if there's no card inserted, so maybe there's just a preset threshold that gets in the way.
     
  14. rainydays macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2006
    #14
    I use a Kensington Dome. I've got the smaller black one though. Works really well, and the top port is very nice for USB drives.
     
  15. wizwaz3 macrumors 6502a

    wizwaz3

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2006
    Location:
    Northern Arizona
    #15
    For the iMac, I think they could pull off a couple of quick USB ports underneath where the speaker grill is. Besides, we have the keyboard. Not sure about mini.
     
  16. Fahrwahr thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 23, 2007
    Location:
    Southeastern U.S.
    #16
    I saw that one on special at Circuit City. It looks pretty reliable, and it's highly-rated among the reviewers there.
     

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