Hardware

+Thunderbolt –Optical Drive = New Mac mini

 

Mac mini
Mac mini

Apple today launched new version of Mac mini desktop with Thunderbolt support. This is in line with other new hardware launched today that support Thunderbolt

Other than Thunderbolt, new Mac mini also come installed with faster new processors, graphic cards and Mac OS X Lion. The Thunderbolt on Mac mini replaces the mini display port. Mac mini retains the size and form factor of the previous generation of Mac minis but one striking change to the exterior is the omission of optical drive.

Apple has made notable changes in the models available. Or one could put it as Apple has gone back to the original price point and two model option similar to what it was before the current generation of Mac minis. Mac minis are now available in two versions. The entry level Mac mini with 2 GB RAM, 2.3GHz dual core Intel i5 chip, 500GB Hard disk drive and Intel HD graphics 3000 processor with 288 MB of DDR3 SDRAM is priced £529 ($599). The other Mac mini comes with 4 GB RAM, 2.5GHz dual core Intel i5 chip, 500 GB Hard drive and has a superior AMD Radeon HD 6630M processor with 256 MB of GDDR5 memory and is priced at £699 ($799)

There is also the Mac mini server version available which is made of 4GB RAM, 2.0GHz quad core Intel i7 chip, dual 500GB 7200rpm hard drives, Intel HD graphics 3000 and is priced at £849 ($999)

By removing the optical drives from Mac mini, Apple seems to have made clear about their stand on optical drives. They seem convinced that the future for optical drives is not long and that the App store is the way forward and that is what they want to go with.

 

White MacBooks disappear from Apple website

Plastic MacBook
White MacBook

Apple today made announcements about the launch new version of Macs with Thunderbolt support and new operating system Mac OS X Lion. But, they also quietly discontinued the plastic body MacBook popular as the white MacBook.

White MacBook when first launched in 2006 were a very popular range and brought in truck loads of new Mac users to Apple. The design was deemed revolutionary and was an instant hit in the creative world and students alike. It was launched with a black sibling which was discontinued when the unibody MacBook Pro model were first launched. But the white MacBook stayed around. They stayed for around 5 years and considering the fast pace of change in the world of IT, it is definitely a feat in itself.

After the introduction of unibody MacBook Pro the white MacBooks were mostly popular among students and people on a tight budget who wanted to buy a Mac notebook. It served well as an entry level MacBook.

Apple now seems to want to move to MacBook Air as their entry level MacBooks. MacBook Airs are aggressively priced at $50 cheaper than MacBook and are beefed with better feature. According to me, they make a perfect replacement for their outstanding predecessor and will certainly make them proud.

For those buyers who are still interested in white MacBook can head to the refurbished section of the Apple website and buy them as refurbished.

 

New MacBook Airs Launched with Sandy Bridge processors, Thunderbolt and backlit keyboard

 

Sandy Bridge MacBook Air
MacBook Air

Apple today revamped its MacBook Air line of notebooks by adding Sandy Bridge processors, Thunderbolt port and the much awaited backlit keyboard as standard feature for the entire range of MacBook Air. The MacBook Airs also come pre-installed with Mac OS X Lion

Apple has retained the shape and two sizes that were introduced with previous generation of MacBook Airs. Both the 11.6” and 13.3” model now come with Intel dual-core i5 processors as default with a configuration option of i7 for both models. Out of the two 11.6” models, only the one with 128GB hard drive is configurable to i7. In terms of specs, the high end 11.6” inch and the low end 13.3” are almost identical in specs with the screen size and additional SD slot in 13.3” model being the only two differences.

Of the two 11.6” models the lower end(entry level) which costs £849 ($999) consists of 1.6 GHz dual core Intel i5 processor, 2GB DDR3 memory, 64 GB flash storage, Intel HD Graphics 3000 processor with 256MB of DDR3 SDRAM shared with main memory. The high end 11.6” model which costs £999 ($1,199) comes with 1.6 GHz dual core Intel i5 processor, 4GB DDR3 memory, 128 GB flash storage, Intel HD Graphics 3000 processor with 384MB of DDR3 SDRAM shared with main memory. Both the models are said to have a battery life of 5 hours.

Of the two 13.3” models the lower end which costs £1,099 ($1,299) consists of 1.7 GHz dual core Intel i5 processor, 4GB DDR3 memory, 128 GB flash storage, Intel HD Graphics 3000 processor with 384MB of DDR3 SDRAM shared with main memory. The high end 13.3” model which costs £1,349 ($1,599) comes with 1.7 GHz dual core Intel i5 processor, 4GB DDR3 memory, 256 GB flash storage, Intel HD Graphics 3000 processor with 384MB of DDR3 SDRAM shared with main memory. Both the models are said to have a battery life of 7 hours.

 

Apple launches new 27 inch diplay: Thunderbolt Display

 

Apple Thunderbolt Display
Apple Thunderbolt Display

Apple today launched three of its products with Thunderbolt support. One of them being 27 inch  LED display.  Apple has now renamed the 27” Cinema display to call it 27” Thunderbolt display.

Thunderbolt display now comes equipped with a thunderbolt port in addition to the other ports USB, Firewire 800 and ethernet port that were available on Cinema display. It is possible to connect up to six devices to each Thunderbolt port. It supports two channels of 10-Gbps throughput in both direction.  Apple claims it to be 12 times faster than firewire 800 and up to 20 times faster than USB 2.0

Thunderbolt display also includes a MagSafe connector that can power your MacBook Pro or MacBook Air straight from the device. By doing so,  it would not only help charge the device but also ensure that there are not too many loose cables around.

The LED backlighting takes no time to brighten up. This means, no waiting time after you turn on your Thunderbold display. It is practially instant on and ready to go as soon as you connect a device to it. The display features a cinematic 16:9 aspect ratio with 2650 x 1440 resolution.

It comes with built in FaceTime HD camera and microphone. You can choose to use the camera and microphone in place of the connected Mac desktop or notebook. This is possible even with the notebook in closed state.

System requirement to connect to this display is a Thunderbolt enable Mac device computer including MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, Mac mini and iMac that runs Mac OS X 10.6.8 or later.