Waiting for Leopard: hardware changes?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by mredondo, Feb 15, 2007.

  1. mredondo macrumors newbie

    Feb 15, 2007
    Hi all! This is my first post.
    Been a long time wintel user, finally going to switch! Actually, I think my "switch story" is a pretty interesting one to share, but I'll leave that for another day.
    Right now, I need the help of all you Mac experts, myself being quite the outsider to the Apple way of doing things...

    I'm thinking of getting the 20" iMac, upgrading RAM to 2Gb and vram to 256Mb.
    I know, from reading the forum, that the Leopard version of OSX is expected sometime between late March and June. I thought about waiting for it, knowing that I can always update to it later, albeit having to pay for it... I still haven't decided: buy now or wait?
    My question is: what's the probability of a hardware specs bump coming at the same time as the release of Leopard? Does Apple do that, normally? And if so, what's the effect of that (Leopard and harware change) on the retail price?

    My thought is: if a little better hardware specs is to be expected by the release of Leopard, while keeping the price similar to what it is now, that would certainly push me over the fence to sit and wait for it, even if it means waiting all the way till June or July!

    What are your thoughts?

    Thanks in advance!
  2. robbieduncan Moderator emeritus


    Jul 24, 2002
    Hardware changes are not normally synced exactly to the OS release but could occur in the same time period. Leopard will have no effect on the price of the hardware: it always comes with the current OS.

    Apple traditionally try and keep prices about the same and introduce speed bumps/new features to retain that price point. For example they could make the 20" iMac the bottom of the range, the 24" the mid range and introduce a 27" or 30" at the top end. So for the same money you would now get a 24" instead of a 20".

    So in summary whether you buy now or in July the price of a certain level iMac will be about the same but you would get the current OS and quite possibly better hardware for the same cash.
  3. irishgrizzly macrumors 65816


    May 15, 2006
    If I were you and according to the buyers guide I'd wait until the next update. I'd say it's now to close to updates to buy a new mac. (unless you need it).
  4. Steven Jackson macrumors 6502

    Dec 8, 2006
    Lincoln, U.K.
    Well, I ordered the 20" iMac yesterday after having exactly the same doubts. I'd been hanging on for iLife 07, but figured that I can update that and Leopard at a later date (albeit at my own expense). Id be a bit fed-up, thouhg, if there was a hardware refresh...

  5. martin1000 macrumors 6502

    Apr 16, 2005
    Washington, D.C.
    I am waiting to purchase an Imac 24" and I think I am going to wait until leopard comes out.

    If leopard does not come out until the May/June time period, it will have been 9 months since the last refresh of the iMacs (Sept. 2006). I'm thinking that the refresh is going to happen just before leopard arrives. I think (and hope) that Apple is going to give all of their machines some sort of boost just in time for Leopard.

    I don't think the update to the iMac line is going to be earth shattering, but maybe a speed boost and an updated graphics card.

    If you don't need it now, I think you should wait.
  6. edenwaith macrumors 6502a


    Aug 7, 2001
    Hold out for a little longer

    I'm in a similar situation, but I'm hoping to be able to hold out for a little longer, at least until iLife '07 and Leopard. By that time, I'm hoping that the iMac will have undergone its next upgrade.

    The last several models of iMacs have kept improving in performance, while decreasing in price. I've been looking at getting a 20" iMac, and the model (with additions) originally came out at $1943, and now it is down to $1743. So, it has kept getting better and cheaper!

    Traditionally, Apple refreshes its computers every 6-9 months. The MacRumor's Buyer's Guide says that the last update came out last September, so it has been at least 5 months. A new iMac could come out soon, or it could potentially be another couple of months. Considering that upgrading to Leopard and iLife '07 would cost around another $200, I'd say, just wait a little longer if you don't need it immediately. You probably would get the best deal by having the latest OS, latest version of iLife, and the freshest hardware upgrade.

    Personally, I'm hoping that the iMac gets a 256 MB video card by default, then it would be just about perfect for me.
  7. mredondo thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 15, 2007
    Thanks, everybody!

    That's all very usefull info, specially the reference to the Buyer's Guide.
    By the looks of it, I guess I'll wait! I don't really "need" to buy now, so that should be no problem...

    Hope to come back here often to get some guidance in my newfound "Mac life"!

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