Apple’s latest iMac is a sight to behold. It’s the largest all-in-one PC we’ve ever seen—in fact with a 27-inch screen, it’s probably the first time anyone’s ever made one this size. Whether or not this is excessive for a home PC will depend on your requirements and imagination, but there’s always the 21.5-inch version for those with space and budget constraints.

The screen is what will completely capture any user’s attention, so it’s best to start by describing it. Sitting in front of a 27-inch iMac fills up a large part of your peripheral vision, and it’s almost too difficult to focus on the whole thing at once. You’ll have to lower the brightness a bit compared to most other monitors, since the whole thing is shining in your face! Apple uses high-quality IPS panels and LED backlighting, and the colors are just amazing. The resolution is 2650 x 1440; comfortably larger than today’s HD panels. Viewing angles are also spectacular, with no color distortion till you’re almost staring at it sideways. This is also the first time Apple has used a 16:9 panel in the iMac line.

Photographs jump to life, movies are simply a treat, and of course Apple’s carefully chosen wallpaper images really shine. If you use professional applications like Photoshop and Aperture, or if you work with design and content creation, you’ll never want to go back to anything else. Initial concerns about cost and practicality are soon replaced with sheer joy.

Apart from its screen, the iMac looks only slightly different than the previous generation. The black glass around the screen is now edge to edge, but it’s still annoyingly reflective—you’ll definitely need to twist around and tilt the iMac a lot to get comfortable under typical office fluorescent lights. The entire body is now aluminum, and the metallic “chin” in front is less obtrusive than before. The DVD drive on the right edge now has an SD card slot for company, while all ports are still at the back. We would have loved to see at least the headphones socket and a couple of USB ports on the side for convenience, now that the ones on the keyboard are gone.

Our review model came with a 3.06 GHz Core 2 Duo CPU, 4 GB of RAM, a 1 TB hard drive, 8x DVD RW drive, and an ATI Radeon 4670 graphics card with 256 MB of RAM. A 21.5-inch model with the same specs can be had with the same configuration, while the lowest-end one has only onboard Nvidia 9400M graphics and half the hard drive space. Interestingly, you can custom-order a 27-inch model with Intel’s new Core i5 or i7 CPU, giving you high-performance quad-core options for the first time—for hefty premiums though. All models come with Bluetooth 2.1+EDR, Wifi N, 1.3-megapixel webcam, and built in speakers and a microphone. However Blu-ray drives are conspicuously absent from all models, which is a massive letdown when you have the huge 27-inch screen at your disposal. With no official online source of HD material in India, it’s a huge waste of this device’s potential.

Screen 21.5″, 1920 x 1080 21.5″, 1920 x 1080 27″, 2560 x 1440
27″, 2560 x 1440
CPU 3.06GHz Intel Core 2 Duo 3.06GHz Intel Core 2 Duo 3.06GHz Intel Core 2 Duo 2.66GHz Intel Core i5
Hard Drive
500 GB 1 TB 1 TB
1 TB
DVD Drive 8x DVD-RW 8x DVD-RW 8x DVD-RW 8x DVD-RW
NVIDIA GeForce 9400M ATI Radeon HD 4670, 256MB ATI Radeon HD 4670, 256MB ATI Radeon HD 4850, 512MB
Rs 64,900 Rs 79,900 Rs 89,900
Rs 1,06,900

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