Learn more Download now Shop now Browse your favorite restaurants Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Learn More Shop now Learn more Shop Fire Shop Kindle Learn More Shop now Shop now Learn more

TOP 500 REVIEWERon 20 May 2011
***IF you're still a Windows user, come and try a Macintosh Computer, you wont regret it - it IS superior, a dream to use, a result of decades of development, beautifully built and will last you a long time!
***This is an ideal 1st Macintosh, but smashes any entry level PC in every respect!!******

I've been using Macs since 1989 (a Mac Plus in my School VI Form DTP room)
And bought my first Mac in 1995 (A Performa)
And have only ever owned a Macintosh (apart from An Amiga and ST back in the 16bit days, and various 8bit computers) And this new one which i've had the pleasure of owning for a week now is my 10th.

And after all these years it never ceases to amaze me how Apple manage to hold onto their loyal customers and users of their machines, and with this recent release they have another winner on their hands which ticks (almost) every box

memory - 4 GB check
Graphics - new fast modern card with 512 MB - check
Processor - very fast i5 2.5 GHZ
Latest OS - check
latest wireless mouse and KB - check
Thunderbolt port - check
Firewire 800 +USB 2 - check
HD 720p Webcam built in - check
minimal desk space and wiring - check
Ethernet - check

I know I will most likely be upgrading my Mac again in 2 1/2 to 3 years time so didn't see the point in paying more for the faster 21.5" version, the extra £300 in my opinion is not worth it.
Nor did I see the point in the 27" version, which has a HUGE screen - too big for my desk. So this base model is perfect, it has plenty of EVERYTHING and doesn't lack in any department - thats why I believe Apple have a winner on their hands, and anyone wishing to get into the Mac OS should go for this, and others wishing to upgrade from a 20" or 17" iMac will not go wrong with this base model.

My previous Mac, almost 3 years old, is a 20" core 2 Duo, and the speed increase with this one is HUGE.
For a start, the machine has an i5 Intel chip, and from what I hear, it's a 'new' i5 which Intel have only just released on the Macintosh.
The graphics have 512 MB of VRAM, and running Eve Online at everything boosted to maximum it runs smooth without a glitch or graphic related slowdown.

It also has one of the new 'Thunderbolt" ultra fast ports, which I have no idea when I will be using, but I've no doubt thunderbolt will be the new 'standard' taking over from both Firewire and USB in the near future - so it's great to have this as standard.

So the machine is very fast, has the latest Snow leopard OS 10 installed, it has 4 GB of RAM as standard and comes with the new Wireless Magic Mouse and Wireless Keyboard - both of which, I'm happy to say are well built and gorgeous looking - the mouse being far better than the crap 'Mighty Mouse' which Apple had out recently - and which was included with my previous Macintosh.

The screen is a gorgeous sleek oLED screen, with the glass covering the wide screen from edge to edge across and the only Aluminium visible is the thin strip of it at the base with the Apple logo.

The Stand has been tapered more, so it seems as if the machine actually takes up LESS real estate on the desk.

All in all a fantastic design, gorgeous to behold, and with a rock solid OS which is so slick, intuitive and quick to use that using anything else is retrogression.

The fan is quiet, quieter than my previous Mac and the Mac runs as hot as the last one, it also has a HD iSite camera built in, so you can use Facetime HD to talk to iPhones, or simply record, or use MSN in HD (720p).

What else? It has more than enough USB ports and a Firewire 800 port plus a fast Ethernet port and an SD card port by the Superdrive.

Mac 'Migration Assistant' is brilliant, when upgrading your old Macintosh, all you need to do is plug the old one into this new one using Ethernet, Firewire or wirelessly to seamlessly and painlessly transfer everything from your old machine onto the new - Macs just work and are so intuitive to use making things simple and seamless.


i) Well, unless you purchase from the Apple store, you'll be lumbered with the wireless Keyboard - which is excellent but lacks a numeric keypad which some people need. And you wont be able to choose the Trackpad as a no cost option if not purchasing from Apple direct.

ii) No Blu Ray!!! Not even an option on any of the iMacs, nor on the Mac Pro desktops!! Come on Apple!!!!!

iii) only 1 Firewire 800 port, and no Firewire 400. My scanner and 1st gen iPod use Firewire 400 and I've been forced to purchase the Neet Firewire 400 to 800 cable.

iV) The design is more or less the same as the previous generation - Apple have not made any attempt to change the design or add something 'new' to it.

V) (more of an OS complaint) no Classic support - but this has been the case for a while, I just like to moan!

Well, if you have never used a Mac, you'll be surprised at how beautiful the interface is and how intuitive it is.
Mac's have little or no Virus problems, use Unix so are rock solid and stable, are well built and have a very long shelf life with high residuals and resale value!

And if you're upgrading, I seriously doubt the extra £300 is worth it for the same size screen slightly more powerful version - you'll be upgrading in a few years any way and this is fast enough!

***UPDATE AUGUST 2011***

Splendid machine, no intermittent fan noise as my last one had, keyboard is still going strong with no battery change at all required, (mouse just ran out), and NO WIRELESS PROBLEMS!!

((just AVOID OS X LION if you can as it's a half baked attempt at a Macintosh OS and has somewhat ruined the experience - iMac + OS X Snow Leopard was a brilliant combination, unfortunately I'm lumbered with Lion but I've managed to get it to look and feel like Snow leopard))

For PC users reading this....

***Macintosh Computers have always been a joy to use and to own, ok, they're tools, computers, but they take the chore out of using a computer for utilitarian purposes and are so very intuitive***

**Any excuses about 'compatibility' are not valid anymore, as the new Macintosh uses Intel processors and is compatible with Office software, and if you insist on using a Windows PC for things such as PC only games, the Macintosh can be installed with and boot up in Windows and be a fully functioning IBM PC clone***

***As for Macintosh computers being expensive, not any more, they're on par with comparable IBM PC clones such as the Sony Vaio but so much more nicer***
1212 Comments| 94 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Report abuse
on 29 November 2011
Bought this for personal use; the thing is just a massive paperweight, I thought Macs were meant to be decent, I ended up downloading Windows for it... Will never go with iOS or a mac again...
1313 Comments| 16 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Report abuse
VINE VOICEon 18 August 2011
Firstly good points:
1) Startup and shutdown times are a dream.
2) No noise, you will hardly notice it's running.
3) Good screen, 1080p resolution, good for watching HD videos.
4) I was able to upgrade OS to Lion free of cost.

And now the bad points:
1) I have managed to hang it on a number of occasions over the last few weeks. I was copying music from CD via iTunes and also trying to run a video file. This did it. I thought i5 processor and the ample RAM should have handled it smoothly.
This has been my biggest headache. Safari freezes too at times.
Wonder if the new Lion OS is to be blamed?
I have since installed Chrome which is an amazingly fast browser.

2) Support for video files is non existent. I have a huge collection of .ivr files which do not work at all. Additionally, you need to install various drivers to play other video files.

The spec mentions no blu-ray (but has a 1080p screen?), no usb 3.0, etc. So I won't complain about that. It is what it is.
I have read other people's reviews which say how intutive an Apple machine is. However, I have not find anything special like that. It is just a different system and you need to learn how it works. There is nothing magical about it.

I just wish I bought windows 7 machine instead like Lenovo all in one for example.
1111 Comments| 45 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Report abuse
on 8 June 2012
We paid the best part of £1000 for this computer - what a waste. It simply cannot maintain a decent wifi connection. All the other laptops and pcs in our house have no problem - this one loses its connection three or four times a day. You have to faff around for five minutes using network diagnostics to reconnect it - infuriating.

We phoned Apple who said this was a known issue with this model and it was a problem caused by the very new software on the Mac not recognising our router which is 4 years old. The only solution they could suggest was to buy a new router!

Avoid and spend your money on something that is actually worth it - nearly a grand for a machine that can't connect to the internet - a joke.
1010 Comments| 10 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Report abuse
on 14 March 2012
Having had Windows/Microsoft pc's my whole computing life , I was a little sceptical about changing to Apple and the hefty price tag that comes with their products...This being the cheapest iMac with little change from a £1000.
Having owned an iPhone now for about a year , I was always impressed at how simple and easy it is to use , and their computers are no different.
To use my old pc felt like a nasty chore that I really didn't want to do and would nearly put my fist through the screen shouting "C'MOOOOON!" in frustration every time I used it , but the iMac has really brought the joys of computing back and I actually look forward to using it and not so much as raised my voice at it as it just does what a computer should do...IE: WORK !

From opening the box to setting up and actually going online took 7 minutes , which made me think I'd done something wrong and surely must have missed something , but NOPE! ... Took me well over an hour to set up my old pc , with box after box , cable after cable , and thats before its initial switch on and then the arduous task of setting everything else up all before actually going online... An iMac is about as difficult to set up as a toaster !

One power cable is all the iMac has and THATS IT ! Gone are the miles of spaghetti and multi plug sockets that are impossible to hide and not had to put a single disc in it yet for anything , not even for my ISP , so you can quite literally put this in any room with minimum of fuss.
Switching on and shut down are dealt with within seconds and is almost as fast as switching on and off your TV , everything just works effortlessly , unlike Windows/Microsoft pc's which seem to go round the house's even for the simplest of tasks.
Popup blocker actually works on the Apple system , where as the Windows version just seems to block popups when it felt like it.
How Bill Gates became one of the worlds richest men I'll never know after using an iMac as even after a short time with it , I would NEVER go back !

As for the negatives ? It does take a little getting used to I admit and I did (reluctantly) have to download Windows Adobe flash player , which is probably Apples only achilles heel as you really have to have it , BUT I MIGHT ADD , its the only program that needs to be CONSTANTLY updated and interrupting me as I work... 7 times now since I've downloaded it where as all the Apple programs have just left me alone !
Its not like you have to learn how to use a computer all over again or anything like that , just some subtle changes here and there and you can always tailor your iMac to be more like what you're used too if you want.
I myself couldn't live without the right click function on the mouse and I did try for 3 weeks to get used to the way Apple does it , but the right click function is just so ingrained with me I had to adjusted the settings in the end , which only took a couple of seconds , but thats all I've changed.
Within a week you'll using the iMac like a pro.

The only way I can compare the experience of changing from pc to iMac (apart from taking a deep breath of fresh air) is like changing from ABC mode to Predictive text on your mobile , but on a grander scale...
Yes they both do the same job , but one is quicker , easier and more efficient and once learned you'll just think "How on Earth did I ever live without that ?" , but there will always be someone out there who'll say "Nah , couldn't get on with it , its rubbish" after spending a whole 30 seconds trying it and no matter what you say , they'll never be convinced , as some people just don't like change even if it is for the better.

Ignore the haters and people who think its just an expensive designer toy and stick with it , you'll soon be rewarded with something that is justified in its price and worth every penny and is simply quite BRILLIANT !
And my only regret with Apple is.... that I never changed sooner !
77 Comments| 25 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Report abuse
on 9 April 2012
I recently purchased an iMac and have been pleased with except for one major problem, after several minutes of inactivity my iMac drops the wifi signal. I thought maybe it was a problem with my settings so i contacted Apple support and although they tried a few things were unable to resolve the issue. The operator suggested the problem was with my IP/router yet all my other computers, playstation, ipod etc don't have this problem.
So i googled "iMac dropping wifi" and found there are a lot of people having the same problem and this has been an ongoing issue since 2009.
The problem seems to be with the Lion OS as opposed to a hardware problem and even though apple have released various fixes it seems to be an ongoing problem.
So my iMac goes back to the shop tomorrow and if they can't sort the problem then i will be looking for my money back.
A lot of money for a computer without wifi.

O.k an update on my situation. After a couple of frustrating weeks playing with the settings on my Mac and my router(zyxel660hw) i found the only way for my Mac to keep a connection was to change the security settings from WPA to WEP.
WEP is not considered very secure so i eventually changed to a new Netgear 330 router and everything seems fine.

Update after 6 months: No connectivity problems since i got the new router and am very pleased with the computer. The only other problem i have had since is i have got a blank screen twice when waking the computer from sleep.
77 Comments| 39 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Report abuse
on 23 January 2012
Applecare doesn't work on Sundays, contrary to published information. They don't start till 8am otherwise. Not impressive in this day and age.
88 Comments| 3 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Report abuse
on 18 November 2011
After years of using Windows-based machines, I was persuaded to splash out and buy an iMac. It cost about £1,000 but I was delighted with the beautiful piece of machinery sitting on my desk.
Sadly the dream soon turned to disaster. After a week or so it began to behave very strangely. The cursor would scamper downwards, whether a drop-down menu, a webpage or text. It became impossible to write anything, as text simply spread rapidly over the whole page. It was difficult to use drop down menus and when I tried to close an app, there came a high pitched warbling sound.
Then there was the strange case of the capital I. The wireless keyboard refused to work for shift+i. Key i was OK but shift+i was not. To get an upper case i, I had to use shiftlock+i.
Calls to the Apple support centre were met with courtesy but no solution. Apple suggested replacing the wireless mouse. It made no difference.
As far as I am concerned this lovely piece of kit is a load of garbage and totally unfit for purpose.
I have been forced back on to my old, slow Windows XP machine. At least it works.
66 Comments| 28 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Report abuse
on 15 May 2012
As an avid PC user for as long as I can remember I finally made the switch to Mac after having experienced the joy and elegance of iPhones and iPads.

For me rather than buying a Mac purely on the Apple brand I bought this because I wanted to try my hand at creating iPhone apps and in order to do this you require a Mac.

First of all, I just want to crack open the proverbial nutshell here and say that this is a great piece of kit. I have owned a Mac for about 6-8 weeks now and it is fast, reliable, versatile and very easy to use.

As many others have mentioned, many of the plus points relate to its look and performance. The machine is certainly very elegant - and with only one wire required, it makes my desk far more clutter free as the mouse and keyboard are both wireless.

Performance wise, it probably starts up in between 20-30 seconds. This is not too dissimilar to PCs that I have owned, but what has impressed me more is how the machine is ready to use as soon as the desktop appears. Far too often on PCs you have to wait a couple of minutes before the PC is truly usable due to its loading of various background programs. Not so with a Mac - you can load up the desktop and be browsing on Facebook extremely quickly.

Shut-down time is about 5 seconds for me - very very fast. I am a fairly hefty user of a computer and I'm pleased to say this Mac holds up very well. I did upgrade the RAM from 4Gb to 12Gb (bought 2x4Gb RAM from Crucial for about £35) - which means that at no point has my Mac ever slowed down due to a lack of memory.

A lot of people will worry about what programs can be run on a Mac that don't on a PC. This clearly depends on the user but for me all programs I use regularly on PC port over to Mac easily. These include Microsoft Office, Portal 2, Football Manager 2012, MSN and audacity.

There are some neat little features on Mac that I like that I haven't experienced on PC - things like when you receive a Facebook event or an email, or an MSN or similar you get those little red circles with numbers to indicate you have a notification of some sort. Nothing groundbreaking but a nice aesthetic difference to the flashing bars you generally get on a PC.

I have had no virus issues so far and have no antivirus installed. I think common sense and diligent care is needed here - everyone knows Macs don't generally get infected as much as PCs due to the PCs share in the market but Macs are certainly not virus-proof - just be careful what you click and download and you should be fine. You can get virus checkers for Mac but in my PC experience virus checkers tend to hog a lot of memory so I will refrain from this as long as I can.

500Gb space is fine for now as my hard disk space - it's plausible I will need more in the future but for now it is fine.

I don't really play graphically intensive games so I cannot really comment on this but it plays both Football Manager and Portal very nicely without any dropoff in framerate.

Sound is very clear even without external speakers - I have no complaints at all about this.

I will admit it can take a bit of a while to switch from PC to Mac. I still don't feel confident enough to be able to fix a problem should I encounter one but I haven't had cause for concern so far. You will have to adjust to how to navigate a Mac and to store/find files - but this is something that just comes in time and becomes second nature the more you use it. In the first few days I was not ruing my purchase but a bit concerned at the complexity of navigation to find certain files etc - but as mentioned this was just a newbie thing and has improved drastically over time.

Is 21.5" a big enough screen? Overall, probably yes - the jump to a 27" screen is heavy on the pockets but for those not willing to pay extra, you certainly won't find this small. I would say that something more like 24" is more optimal, but this is not available on the current set of Macs. In hindsight I think I should have got the larger screen, but this is not a dealbreaker. Note that as this is an all-in-one, you cannot upgrade the screen without upgrading the whole Mac.

In terms of the Magic Mouse and the keyboard - I like one and dislike the other. The magic mouse to me while fairly innovative is not quite to my liking. It's easy to scroll with and is nice to look at - I do even now have some trouble with right clicking and zooming with it. I would probably prefer to use a different mouse but in truth I haven't been too bothered to change.

I really like the keyboard. It's nicely built and I like how you are not going to be able to dirty the keyboard with crumbs and other foodstuffs getting stuck in there. A few people have complained about no numeric keypad. This is true but to me it's no big deal - and I work with spreadsheets often.

iTunes is excellent on the Mac. It's much faster and sleeker than iTunes on a PC. Same goes for iPhoto - while I can easily do the same on a PC, the Mac makes me feel like everything is much more organised and together and I'm not spreading my pictures and music all over my Mac. It's just very... tidy.

So in hindsight, getting a Mac was a very good idea - for me it was quite forced in that if I want to create an iPhone app I needed one anyway. Would I pick a Mac over a PC in the future? Hmmm... this is hard to say. I definitely enjoy Macs - but I also enjoy PCs (when they are working well!). There is no real supremacy I can give one over the other - so when it comes to my next computer, I probably will favour Macs slightly more, but would also have no problem turning to a PC again. I must say though don't underestimate the joy of having a device that does not lag - this is a godsend when you consider other computers that churn very slowly after a few years of use. I am still very new to Macs so I cannot determine how it will perform in a couple of years time - but this is certainly a great start so far.

Also note that this review was written in May 2012. It is widely expected that a new series of iMacs will become available soon - so it may be worth holding out for those if Apple keep the same price point. Also, a new Mac OS will be out soon called Mountain Lion. It may be worth upgrading to this OS once it comes out - which will have some neat upgrades, such as notification centre (akin to that in iOS 5 and above).
33 Comments| 91 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Report abuse
VINE VOICEon 11 July 2011
This is my first iMac. Make no mistake about it, there will be no going back. Even this year's entry level model is a beast of biblical proportions. The Beast of Revelation. The purchase vindicates itself after 20 seconds of turning the iMac on. In that tiny space of time it's ready and waiting to get down to action. That's as fast as an iPad 2. When it comes to shutting down, it surely can't be beaten - you don't get better than instantaneous. First and last impressions are therefore immaculate. Everything in-between is rather special as well...

All the new features and performance increases are detailed in the product description. Suffice it to say, the power of this iMac, the simplicity of its software, the look of the hardware, even the joyful nature and feel of the bundled wireless keyboard and Magic Mouse (seriously, I type and work faster than I ever have before), they're all irresistible arguments, as is the famous Apple customer service. Do I look at my top of the range 27" screen brethren with green-eyed jealousy? I've no need to, this fellow has done everything I've asked of it without a hint of choking under the pressure. I haven't had one single crash in two months of usage, not even any noticeable slow down. Can you imagine a world like that, Windows users? Two months ago, I'd have questioned the existence of such a world myself.

There are grumbles to be had. Compared to the rest of the features, the 8x optical drive seems somewhat modest and relatively noisy (did I mention that this iMac is otherwise practically silent much of the time?) and it's not Blu-ray. The screen isn't flawless either, and not just because of its reflective nature but for all the reports of dust finding its way behind the glass. It's happened to me and I almost lost the will to live before running to Google in a flood of tears and discovering how easy it is to remove the glass with nothing more than a suction cup or two. It's still got to be a design flaw of sorts, though.

Indeed, the 2011 model is identical in appearance to last year's, except for the new Thunderbolt port on the back. When you consider that this update has been all about beefing up the innards substantially, you can probably expect a spectacular redesign of a more aesthetic nature next year. And you know you'll want it. That's the cost of picking from the Apple cart. Bottom line: the cheapest of this year's range outperforms the most expensive of last year's in the majority of tasks, sometimes by a fair distance. Contrary to popular belief about Apple products, I think it's worth every penny.
33 Comments| 46 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Report abuse

Sponsored Links

  (What is this?)