New iMac - first impressions


Active Member
Well, after seeing my new toy travel half way around the world it finally arrived on Thursday - a 24" 2.8GHz iMac with 2Gb of RAM and a 500 Gb HD. As the 2.8GHz model is classed as a custom order it took about 2 weeks from order to final delivery.

First thing you notice is the size - the 24" is a hefty bit of kit but you get used to the size very quickly. Just two days in and I'm wondering how I survived with a 19" monitor all these years. I have to admit, the glossy screen will be an issue for some. The screen is extremely bright and the colours do 'pop', especially with the black surround but it does require careful placement. If you work with your back to a window or in a room with lots of light, then you may find living with the glossy screen intolerable. Fortunately I don't so as far as I'm concerned, the screen is absolutely gorgeous. Apple Quicktime trailers in 1080p have a real wow factor and I'm finding it easier than ever to edit my photos.

The new keyboard will feel comfortable to those of you with a Macbook already. It's a little different at first and perhaps it could be a little more raised but again it's just a matter of getting used to it. It's a great match for the iMac; black keys would be too intrusive for my tastes.

I've not really had the chance to push the machine much yet but so far I've found it to be whisper quiet. The fan noise is barely a murmur in normal usage and the HD is also very quiet.

The biggest surprise to me has been the quality of the built in speakers. I was considering getting some Harmon Kardon sound sticks but for small speakers the clarity and depth of bass was starting. Unless you're listening to music pretty seriously on your iMac I'd stick to the internal speakers and thus retain the minimalist look.

The new iLife suite looks great and the events organiser in iPhoto is a handy way of organising large batches of photos.

So all in all I'm very happy with my purchase. This is my final switch to Macs after getting a macbook last year. Transferring my iTunes and photos has been relatively painless and barring a couple of things I may need parallels for, I don't think I'll be looking at a PC again for some time to come. Roll on Leopard!

richard plumb

Distinguished Member
Nice one Baron. Agree completely

mine takes up roughly the same desk space as my PC monitor, but now I can ditch the PC tower on the floor.

Very quiet which is almost worth the price of admission alone.

Also very easy to get .mac etc up and running, and publishing a web gallery was scarily easy.

Wasn't sure about iphoto after hearing scare stories about how its difficult to get to your photos separately in case you want to do things to them, but was pleasantly surprised how it kept my folder structure, turning them into events. I'd still prefer some way to separate family photos from my own stuff (can you have multiple libraries open?) but overall its very nice so far. Haven't tested editing yet - need to be able to integrate it into elements for editing or perhaps CS2 later on.

Overall its just nice to use. So much less effort required (and software needing installing) to get to where I am on the PC.

Just need a good photo editor and make sure the flow is ok (and cooperates with iphoto), and a newsgroup reader and I'm all set.



Active Member
Richard, no problem about integrating Elements into the iPhoto workflow. Go to preferences where you will see drop-down options for editing. Elements is one of the options listed for editing so when you double click on an image it should open Elements automatically as well as opening your image. Works for CS2, I know. But before you wander into Elements explore the possibilities in iPhoto itself. The controls in the adjustment panel have become more and more sophisticated with each release of iPhoto such that i use iPhoto alone for family-type photos and only use Aperture and CS2 for pics that have a chance of doing well in a competition. And yes, you can have separate libraries but you can't have them both onscreen at the same time. I haven't tried creating a separate library yet (except my Aperture Library) so best go to the Help/tutorials before trying it. Not sure how you would do separate library imports into iPhoto....


Active Member

looking at the 24" 2.8 imac myself and have a couple of ques...

- i've read over at about a few screen problems with the 24" - dead pixels, uneven backlighting and yellowish tinges across the screens. Obviously it's possible to pick up a biased view from these as only the people with problems complain but, have you noticed any of these problems??

- Does the 2.8 chip run hot after a few hours??



richard plumb

Distinguished Member
I noticed one black pixel around the center of my screen last night while editing some photos. Not really noticable in day to day use.

I've had no issues with backlight or tinges so far.

It does vent a fair bit of heat (2.4GHz) but its always nice and quiet.


Active Member
No screen problems here at all. I think like any new product launch there are going to be a few duff units and in typical forum form, the people who have problems shout more loudly than those who are happy.

I've been importing CDs into Apple lossless whilst running CS3 and I've barely heard a murmur. Looking at istat, my iMac has been running for an hour this morning and the CPU is at 38 degrees.


Active Member
Congratulations on your new toy. I ordered mine on the 14th August and can see that it's been shipped today, with an estimated arrival on the 4th September.
Really looking forward to it, as it'll be my first ever Mac.


Deleted member 92943

Congrats on your purchase mate. I've been a Mac owner for over 2 weeks now and still soooo happy i bought one.

I love the new keyboard too:thumbsup:


Well-known Member
I love the new keyboard too:thumbsup:

Least yours bl**dy works !! (sorry Lee) ... seems if you buy a new aluminium keyboard to hook up to an *old* mac (I have a G5 DP PowerMac) you might be out of luck for some of the key functions !!

Volume(s), FF/Play/RW and brightness all work fine but Expose and Dashboard do not work at all :-(

I was pointed to a link that suggested a custom install using Pacifist - that got the Expose button working OK but has corrupted my Dashboard client and that will now not work at all - either under F4 or the old F12 !!

Another search reveals there might be a compatibility problem with *some* macs - Apple are investigating (and haven't put any disclaimers on their web pages either yet !!)



Well-known Member
sorry to hear that mate, that sucks :thumbsdow

Happy now - got it working after digging around and doing some custom package installs with Pacifist ... I still think there is something iffy with the PowerPc keyboard install that doesn't update the in the right way ...

Anyone else have problems with one let me know and I'll point you in the right direction ...


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