August 31, 2004: Apple launches the iMac G5, a particular, white plastic laptop that appears a bit of just like the world’s greatest iPod.
Housed in a 2-inch-thick enclosure paying homage to Apple’s Cinema Shows, the brand new all-in-one machine bridges the hole between the pleasing plasticity of the long-lasting G3 iMac and the minimalist kind issue of as we speak’s ultra-slim aluminum Mac desktops.
iMac G5: One massive panel
Not like the bulbous iMac G3, which packed all its internals right into a cumbersome cathode ray monitor, or the sunflower-inspired iMac G4, which had its guts constructed into its base unit, the iMac G5 design compressed every little thing right into a single panel.
At present, we’re used to Macs incorporating the CPU, motherboard, drives and audio system into the all-in-one laptop’s monitor. However in 2004, it was one thing few individuals had seen earlier than. (The package deal obtained much more complete the next 12 months, when Apple added an built-in iSight webcam to the ultimate iMac G5 revision.)
Likewise, we’ve change into accustomed to the bigger screens Apple helped pioneer. Nevertheless, the iMac G5’s selection of 17- or 20-inch widescreen show felt extremely contemporary and opulent on the time. (It wasn’t a complete first for Apple, since some iMac G4 fashions additionally included an identical 20-inch display screen).
The pc’s iPod-inspired design served one other essential perform, too. It consciously linked the brand new iMac G5 with Apple’s hottest product on the time.
I consistently converse with individuals whose first Apple laptop was the iMac G5. By 2004, Cupertino had come an extended, good distance from its Nineteen Nineties nadir. However there have been nonetheless loads of individuals taking their first tentative steps into the Apple world.
By crafting a pc that intently resembled its iconic music participant, Apple capitalized on the halo impact that later labored so properly for the corporate and its ecosystem of iPhones, iPads and different interconnected units.
iMac G5: Beneath the hood
By way of parts, the iMac G5 got here with a 160GB arduous drive, 256MB of 400MHz SDRAM, an Nvidia GeForce FX 5200 Extremely graphics card and a vertically mounted, slot-loading DVD-R SuperDrive. For connectivity, customers may reap the benefits of Apple’s Emmy-winning FireWire expertise, USB 2.0 and non-obligatory help for each AirPort Excessive and Bluetooth.
As a result of the iMac G5 ran hotter than its predecessor, Apple engineers used three “ultra-quiet” followers to chill the pc. The followers drew in cool air by way of the speaker grille and a slit behind the case.
The final PowerPC
For all its advances, nonetheless, the iMac G5 additionally marked an essential closure level. It was the ultimate iMac to make use of a PowerPC processor (extra particularly, a 1.8GHz PowerPC 970 (G5) processor). Apple introduced its momentous change to Intel CPUs in June 2005.
In sensible phrases, this meant the iMac G5 was the final mannequin able to natively working Mac OS 9 (Basic) functions.
It was additionally the final iMac to be simply upgradeable by a mean person. Opening it up required the unscrewing of simply three screws on its underside. Then the proprietor may raise off the complete again of the machine to entry its innards.
This course of didn’t really feel prefer it required a sophisticated engineering diploma. Nearly anyone may swap out the iMac G5’s arduous drive, enhance its RAM or just clear its inside followers.
Do you bear in mind the iMac G5?
Had been you a kind of individuals who took the plunge into Apple-ville for the primary time with this beautiful laptop? Go away your ideas and recollections beneath.