iMac Goes Big Screen, Adds Core 2 Duo

Apple Computer today gave its iMac line of all-in-one computers a significant speed bump, moving the entire line to Intel’s new Core 2 Duo processors, and adding a new high-end configuration sporting a 24-inch built-in LCD display. Apple’s iMac line now offers two configurations with a 17-inch display (with prices starting at $999), one system with a 20-inch screen, plus the new 24-inch screen size.

"Every iMac—from the $999 model up through the new dazzling 24-inch widescreen model—now features blazing Core 2 Duo performance," said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior VP of Worldwide Product Marketing, in a statement. "And the new 24-inch widescreen iMac is the fastest, biggest and brightest iMac we’ve ever made."

Under the hood, the 17-inch iMacs are available with 1.83 and 2.0 GHz Core 2 Duo chips, while the 20-inch and 24-inch models bump the processor speed to 2.16 GHz, customizable up to 2.33 GHz. Apple claims the Core 2 Duo systems offer up to 50 percent faster performance than previous 20-inch iMac models running Core Duo chips. The 24-inch model offers a screen resolution of 1,920 by 1,200 pixels, 1 GB of RAM (with support for up to 3 GB), a 250 MG SATA hard drive, an Nvidia GeForce 7300 GT 128 MB graphics controller, an (Apple lingo) SuperDrive (8× double layer DVD+R DL/DVD±RW/CD-RW), plus mini-DVI video output, three built-in speakers, an integrated mic, and optical audio input and output. Every iMac includes Apple’s built-in iSight video camera (for use with the included iChat and Apple’s Photo Booth applications, along with Skype and other video tools), gigabit Ethernet, two FireWire 400 ports and one FireWire 800 port, five USB ports (two USB 1.1, three USB 2.0), and (of course) Mac OS X, Apple’s iLife ’06 suite of lifestyle applications (iMovie, iDVD, iWeb, iPhoto, GarageBand, iTunes, etc.) along with Apple’s Front Row media management software and a remote control.

The new Core 2 Duo iMacs are available today; prices for the 17-inch edition start at $999; the 20-inchers start at $1,499 and the big 24-incher start at $1,999; custom configurations options are available.

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