Little Whispers 2 Double Redux

Hey - I'm batting .500!

In the wake of the MotoNow / ROKR debacle, it's nice to have something go right. To wit: The new iBooks and Mac Minis that were so boldly predicted right here last week.

The iBook line has been simplified to two models: 1.33GHz/12.1-inch/40GB HD/combo drive and 1.42GHz/14.1-inch/60GB HD/super drive. Both books are $200 (USD) less than their previous incarnations, and takes the iBooks far enough away from the PowerBook 12 -inch price point to simplify consumer choices. The big trade-off in performance is that both iBooks will have 32MB of video memory, not enough to take advantage of Mac OS X 10.4 Tiger's new Core Image technologies. If you are a graphics professional, forget the iBook. If you are anyone else, you will be glad to know that both Bluetooth (2.0+EDR, thank you very much) and scroll-enabled trackpads are standard on both books, as is the Sudden Motion Sensor technology that has graced the last two generations of PowerBooks.

The new Mac Minis now check in at three price points, with processor and RAM boosts across the board - the entry level Mini now sports a 1.25GHz processor and 512MB or built-in memory, with a jump to 1.42GHz for the other two boxen. Better yet, the middle and "high-end" models now have the same Bluetooth and AirPort Extreme hardware as the iBooks. The big "trade-off" for this added speed and functionality at a much lower price? No more 56K modem. Big fucking deal - you would have to be a complete fenderhead to complain about that.

Finally, all Mac mini models now feature the same 32MB ATI Radeon 9200 video card as the iBooks , which gives them the same Core Image limitations. Once again, if you are a Photoshop maven, stay away. If you are an average mope, welcome to paradise.

Posted: Wed - July 27, 2005 at 05:51 AM