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on 23 March 2011
Not only is this the best computer I have ever bought it's the most reliable, trouble free, does as it states piece of kit. I purchased one of these because I do run a photography business and currently own several iPhones which have instilled the Apple way of life in me.

I upgraded the RAM to 8GB using Crucial's cheaper upgrade option and it now has 8GB ram, one thing to note is that although the computer can be ran in 64 Bit mode (holding down keys 6 and 4 when it starts - this took me a while to figure out!) the software still needs to be for 64 Bit computers to get the full usage from it, for example Photoshop CS4 is only 32Bit software and will only use 3.2GB of the installed RAM no matter how much you state it can use. Photoshop CS5 onwards will allow far greater RAM usage.

I am not going to say I have not experienced the odd problem or two but these seem to be more operating system niggles that were easily overcome, the problem I had most often was the mouse not waking up the Mac due to some Bluetooth error and when you have a Bluetooth keyboard your kinda stuck leaving you to power off the mac and potentially damage any open files! On the operating system front it is very easy to pick up from using Windows for 15 years too!

The latest mouse that you get is very good and inovative the way it uses gestures like a touch screen phone, the only issue is that becuase it's designed for left and right handed users it's not the most comfortable and can give you cramp after an hour, I did keep wanting to plug in the old Microsoft Intellimouse but have successfully got past this sticky point and opted to stay with this mouse :0)

I was staggered that taking the iMac out of the box and plugging it in for the first time I was up and running in 10 minutes with a fully configured working computer that was on the net and already had my iTunes library copying over...

Bootcamp is good and FREE, it allows you to install another operating system on your Mac to enable multiple OS booting options. Although you can get other software this option does allow you to do it for free but means you have to natively boot into the other OS, the very clever thing about this is that the settings your iMac has done in configuring it initially passes over to this partition thus meaning it'll be the fastest Windows set up you've ever seen too, simply install the secondary OS and it just simply works!

Ok so many good points but here's the best - Time Machine, get yourself a USB desktop hard drive plug it in and allow only Time Machine to use it, what it does is all in the background when you don't even know about it backs up any changes every hour keeping hourly backups of your files for the last day, daily for a month and then incremental backups for as much as the space on the drive allows. This is genius and I have had to use it once for a full restore after anti-virus software disabled port 80 (internet) and I couldn't figure out what the software had done, I simply ran a full back up that formatted my hard drive and put it all back to the way it was two days before my problem which took 4 hours and once done it was absolutely the way it was the two days prior!

I would recommend getting the keyboard with keypad attached as this is hard wired and has 2 extra USB ports with easy access, as well as this the extra USB hard drive for time machine and a spare 7 port USB hub. all this will cost you no more than £1800 and will probably last you 8 years.

Simply put the machine is leaps ahead of its rivals but as you can see so is the price tag, money aside look towards the future and think about the length of time this machine will last opposed to the others on the market, I reckon you'll have less head aches and it will last longer too resulting in saved money, a year in and I know I have made the right decision!
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on 26 July 2010
I have always wondered why everyone praises these computers. I finally took the plunge and ordered one from Amazon. Delivery took just a few days, it arrived perfectly packaged. Unpacked and setup in minutes - they've thought of everything, even the mouse and keyboard are ready loaded with batteries. Just plug in and switch on, it couldn't be simpler.
The screen is extremely good. I was a little concerned about it being glossy, but it's really not an issue. It's particularly sharp and ideal for watching video.
The built in speakers are also worth a mention - for me very very good sound, good bass, loud enough for general use, with the option that you can hook up to an amp via optical cable.
I've also purchased an EyeTV Sat receiver that plugs into the usb port. Unlike on my Windows Vista laptop, where this receiver was constantly crashing and locking the whole system, on the iMac it works perfectly. High Definition TV is a dream, it's a perfect addition to the iMac. Highly recommended.
All in all I couldn't be happier, having been so used to Windows it's just a whole new user experience - everything just works, intuitive, no hangs or crashes, pure joy. OK, it's not cheap, but consider the build quality and size of the screen, very good value for money.
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on 28 November 2014
This is the machine I own. I spent a lot of time deliberating wether to buy it or not, eventually I did and I must say I have not regretted it, it's a dream! From the perfect screen size to the sound from built in speakers everything about this machine oozes quality, including the build and software. It is so easy to use, though I must admit it took a while for me to get used the the new operating system (my first mac, bar an iPhone).

After a couple of years now the machine has slowed down a bit, though the hard drive is over 3/4 full and I could do with cleaning up my files a bit, which does improve that. It has never given me a days trouble, there are no error messages, unlike my last dell PC which was a nightmare...
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on 10 January 2010
This review is for the i7 quad core version of the 27 inch imac. Overall, I'm pleased with the machine - prior to delivery I had anxieties following reviews of iMacs arriving with cracked screens and dead pixels, stories which abound across the web, but thankfully, mine seems to be fine. As soon as I turned it on, there has been a software update for the graphics card which I expect was to address the screen flicker issues. I was also concerned about glare from the screen - and it remains a slight nag (I don't want to see my reflection when I'm working). Against that, photos do look a lot better. It would be good if Apple offered customers the choice of specifying a matte screen for their new iMac range.

The main problem, as seems to be the case increasingly with Apple, are the teething problems with the new OS, Snow Leopard: lots of Finder restarts required, forced quits, the absence of Print to Adobe PDF is really annoying and means I will not be giving up Tiger on my Macbook Pro any time soon. Its similar with what happened when Leopard came out and many of the problems regarding core software like Acrobat are emerging again with Snow Leopard.

The new Magic Mouse finally introduces native two button clicking (Apple finally accepts that they were wrong with earlier designs). The scroll is OK, but not as accurate as using a regular wheel with intervals, so I still have a £10 Logitech laser mouse connected to do CAD on. The swipe action is also a bit hard to get used to. But definitely an improvement over the Mighty Mouse.

The bluetooth wireless keyboard is quite a novelty, with its total absence of numeric keypad, meaning it is both slim and small. Its quite fun, a bit Space 1999. The only issue I've noticed so far is the CAPS LOCK key is a bit sticky and puts up a bit of a fight going on and off. The downside of a wireless keyboard is that there are no USB slots now easily accessible, so it means scrabbling behind the screen to access the ports. There are 4 x USB and one firewire 800 sockets. Both the mouse and the keyboard helpfully both take standard size AA batteries (2 in each) so that means you can easily fit rechargeables when the factory fitted standard ones run out.

Aside from the glare / refection issues, the screen is glorious - I had been worried about it being too big on my desk, and I'm still adjusting a little to the size. The best thing is the way it can double as a decent size TV through the addition of something like the Elgato Eye-TV USB dongle in the back. The picture for watching TV and films was very good.

Performance wise, apart from the issues from the OS, the machine ticks along at a rare old pace - as you'd expect from something costing this much.

The only other major issue I have is apple's preferred delivery partner - UPS. I spend so long trying to get them to understand the most basic of instructions, but they still managed to mess up 2 out of the 3 deliveries associated with this order, which is quite some achievement given how much time had been spent on the phone by me and apple staff making sure they had the correct details. A lot of time and energy was waasted due to the failings of UPS, and Apple probably needs to review if they are the best courier company for them to be using.

EDIT: Because Snow Leopard is SO VERY BAD, I've revised my rating down from 4* to 3*. Most of my day has been wasted trying to sort out Font Book issues because of Apple's approach to Helvetica Neue and also now when I turn my printer on, my imac grinds like a ZX81 and effectively SBBOD or just hangs. I have never had these problems with my MBP and Tiger. I cannot clear the print memory, it seems that even going in to CUPS and trying to do it that way, doesn't work, so effectively to use my laser printer I'm going to have to look into reinstalling the OS. What a shocker Apple are having of late. They've become the new Microsoft.

EDIT 2: another annoying thing you should know is the way the logicboard works regarding Boot DVDs - I have spent most of today trying to repair my HDD using TechTools Pro and DiskWarrior, only to be told by a top level expert at Apple that the logicboards on the 27 inch imacs won't actually read the boot data from these DVDs. Drive Genius also does not boot up. I even tried copying the DVDs to a USB key to try to boot from there, but no success. So a lot of hardware / software backward compatibility issues to take account of. The only way you can run any third party disk repair software on a quad core imac is to use transfer mode on boot and connect your imac to another mac and run the disk repair software from that.

Consequently, given Apple's slowness in releasing the logicboard code to the market, you might want to wait a while before buying a quad core mac, to be sure that there is software available to support it.

EDIT 3: the new 27inch imacs with the 1TB HDDs also are quite noisy. Do a search and see. Just searching the web and the HDD clicks every 10 seconds. Its quite offputting if you are used to the quietness of macs.

EDIT 4: Having spoken to the top level applecare expert about my Seagate 1TB hard drive (I was getting missing thread record errors which would recur a week after being fixed via DVD disk utility), I was advised to do a complete reformat and reinstall. I did this - and, disappointingly, the problem is back. So the Seagate 1TB drive is faulty and the machine will have to go back. Again, if you google you'll find a few people talking about the problems with the Seagate drives.

EDIT 5: So back to the apple store the i7 imac went, to be confirmed by the genius that there were serious firmware and hard drive issues. A replacement was issued after about 10 days of waiting. And guess what? The new machine displays exactly the same problems as the previous faulty i7 did - missing thread errors, directory count errors. So it looks like the second imac is going to have to be returned as well now.

I'm not sure how much time apple think we all have to effectively beta test their retail products for them? I have so far had to do 4 x complete reinstalls on two separate machines. A total waste of my time.

Apple really does need to improve its reliability - particularly for machines at this price.

EDIT 6: I have revised by rating down to one star. I have just received an email instructing me that the 1TB Seagate Hard Drive in my imac has been recalled. So this is the THIRD time I will have to replace my machine because of the hard drive issues, meaning a reinstall and the hassle of taking the drive to the store. This follows on from the faulty graphics card I had in my macbook pro.

Want to know why apple makes 30% operating margins? Because it uses poor quality components. I've learned my lesson alright.
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on 9 February 2011
After having spent the last couple of years using my brilliant 20" Core 2 Duo iMac, i decided to upgrade to the 27" i3. It arrived in A1 condition and once i had it out of the box and sat next to my existing iMac, the difference in size is quite amazing - the 27" screen really is a treat!

Once it was powered on and basic configuration completed, i set about running the automatic transfer of data and applications from old to new. This is done via the onboard software, and for the most part worked perfectly. Having not used this utility before, it transferred all my basic settings, apps and most of my docs. A few things were missed which i sorted out the next day along with tweaking and updating where necc.

I have no issues with hard drives making noise, screens flickering or glare as reported by some people - i felt confident from the monmnt of ordering as my old mac never gave me any trouble whatsoever. Im a regular user of both OS x and various flavours of windows so i installed VmWare Fusion 3.0 (£35) and Windows 7 Home Premium (£80) on my new kit and i now have a brilliant all in one machine. Fusion runs great and windows is faster that it could ever be on a dedicated machine.

All in all, its been a very nice experience - Macs are not right for everybody (just as windows isn't) but if you have an open mind and are not afraid of change, give it a go :)
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on 4 October 2010
We really like this, it was fairly straightforward changing from a Windows PC, most things were automatic. The screen is fantastic for videos and photos. The main difficulty is iwork after using MS office - to be fair I have not had the training or followed the tutorials in detail. The big screen is a real boon for having two applications or web pages open simultaneously; I used to use two screens with my old PC to achieve the same. Overall it is very good indeed.
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on 24 September 2015
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on 24 March 2013
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