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WWDC 2013 Keynote Highlights

Monday, June 10th, 2013 | Author:

Ever since Apple stopped attending the Macworld Expo, we’ve had to rely on various “Apple Events” during the year to get our fix of new Mac hardware. For the last few years, they’ve been fairly regular, and you kind of had an idea of what hardware was coming out when.

There is one event, though, that still features an Apple keynote presentation: the World Wide Developers’ Conference. For the most part, this keynote is concentrated on the software aspects of the Apple ecosystem. This is usually where we find out about new features of OS X and they expand on the new upcoming editions of iOS.

However, there have also been numerous instances where we were graced with new or updated hardware, the most recent being last year’s MacBook Pro with Retina display.

So with a mixture of curiosity of the next iteration of OS X and iOS and the anticipation of new hardware to to run them on, here is our rundown of the keynote and some thoughts on what we’ve got. Article Continues…

Category: Apple News

It’s new iMac Day!

Friday, November 30th, 2012 | Author:

Things are buzzing around the OWC Campus here in Woodstock, Illinois. Apple just released the new 21.5” iMacs this morning and we’re on our way to getting them in, opening them up, and taking a look inside to see what can be upgraded and how easily.

With a new iMac, the obvious thing to do is to compare it to the previous generation. The main thing that stands out is that the new iMac is considerably thinner than the previous generation. The most noticeable side effect to this is the elimination of an internal optical drive on the new iMacs, though this is easily remedied by simply adding an external optical drive if you need one.

A slightly faster i5 processor (2.7GHz, vs 2.5GHz) is in the stock model, as well as twice the stock RAM and official maximum RAM. They also double the stock hard drive to a 1TB drive, and will be offering a Fusion Drive as well, which wasn’t available on the previous models. There also seems to be a SSD port similar to those in the latest MacBook Pros and Mac Book Air, so we’ll be looking into that, too. Graphics has been switched over to an nVidia GeForceGT 640M vs the old AMD Radeon 6750M.

For connectivity, say goodbye to FireWire 800, as Apple has removed that port entirely. However, they added an extra Thunderbolt port, so you can always use an adapter to connect your legacy peripherals. There are still four USB ports, though, and they’re USB 3.0 versus the USB 2.0 in the older models, so you can get a little more speed out of those peripherals that will support it.

Here’s a first look at the new iMac as we picked it up from the store.

Make sure you stick around for the unboxing photos, videos, and more as the day unfolds.

Category: Apple News

Don’t be Surprised by Mountain Lion Requirements.

Friday, July 20th, 2012 | Author:

OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion is on its way, and we’re all looking forward to all the new features and tweaks that this latest version offers. Unfortunately, not every Mac user is going to be able to ugrade to Mountain Lion, though. While Macs generally have a long “active support” life, every iteration of OS X leaves a generation or two behind and Mountain Lion is no exception.

The big thing this time around is 64-bit compatibility. Your computer needs to not only have a 64-bit capable processor, but also 64-bit capable EFI boot firmware. Some Macs, like the 2006 and 2007 Mac Pros, have 64-bit processors, but their EFI firmware is only 32-bit capable, so they won’t be able to run Mountain Lion.

According to Apple, the following computers will be able to run 10.8 Mountain Lion. If you don’t know how to find your Model ID, we’ve got a guide that will show you where to lookArticle Continues…

Category: Tech Tips

WWDC to Bring Lots of New Hardware

Friday, June 8th, 2012 | Author:

Every year, Apple has its conference focusing on Developers across the globe; appropriately called the World-Wide Developers Conference. Generally, it’s a showcase for Apple’s new technologies and software, with a focus on programming for Mac OS X and iOS. While there have been a number of hardware releases at WWDC over the years, including the Xserve, the iSight camera, and the original Mac Pro, the focus has generally been on software; in recent years, iOS has predominated the scene, with OS X taking a bit of a back seat.

This year, though, Apple is rumored to be putting a big focus on hardware by refreshing a large portion of its product line all at once. Here’s a quick rundown of what’s speculated to be making an appearance. Article Continues…

Category: Apple News

New Mid 2010 iMacs may have a surprise inside.

Tuesday, July 27th, 2010 | Author:

Apple upgraded the “desktop” portion of its lineup today; both the iMac and the Mac Pro saw updates to their line.

While the Mac Pro’s updates were mostly centered around their new “Westmere” processors and won’t be available until next month, the iMacs have a number of upgrades and are available right away.

The big news on the iMac front is the discrete graphics, including the powerful ATI Radeon HD 5750. This will allow the iMac to deliver incredible graphics performance for all but the most demanding 3D games, creative software, and technical applications. Like their tower counterparts, the all-in-one iMacs have also seen a processor upgrade – to the Core i3, i5, and i7 processors across the board, rather than as special-order options. These processors, aside from faster speeds and up to four cores, also feature an integrated memory controller. This allows the iMac’s processor to access the memory directly, rather than have to go through a separate I/O controller, resulting in faster overall data access.

While maxing out this memory will run about $1000 from Apple, you can bet that we at OWC are already working on getting you compatible memory for a fraction of that price. Keep that in mind if you’re buying a new iMac today: get the default memory from Apple; you’ll save by upgrading your memory from OWC in the long run.

Data input also got a new look. The new Magic Trackpad was announced with the iMac, effectively behaving much like the multi-touch trackpad on the MacBooks and MacBook Pros. It’s available as an option, replacing the normally-included Magic Mouse.

The final upgrade option is what’s causing the most stir around the OWC offices. It wasn’t included in Apple’s literature, but it can be found in the custom configurations: the option for two internal drives. Apparently, you can get a configuration that includes a 256GB SSD and either a 1TB or 2TB hard drive! This leads to some potentially powerful setups that combine the speed of an SSD and the capacity of of a platter-based drive—much in the same way you can get by adding an OWC Data Doubler and OWC Mercury Extreme SSD combo to a Unibody MacBook or MacBook Pro.

The main questions, though, are where this second drive will be installed and what processor type it will utilize. On first glance, it may be possible that the SSD will be installed in the optical bay, using something akin to the OWC Data Doubler. However, such a configuration would necessitate having to omit the optical drive; since no warning seems to appear on Apple’s site regarding this, another option is more likely. Right now, the OWC Blog staff theories are split between a special form factor SSD attached in a strange spot and an unmentioned “extra” drive bay that can take any standard SATA drive. The truth, though, is yet to be determined.

Keep an eye here on the OWC Blog; we’ll be getting one of each of the new iMacs for memory testing soon, so while we’re in there, we’ll find out the Mystery of the Dual iMac Drives!

Category: Apple News