The stylish Apple iMac, with its shiny white enamel-like exterior and gorgeous wide-screen, 17-inch LCD, isnt just about good looks. Under all that fancy design beats the heart of a true computer. In general, Apple systems are highly regarded by many in the creative arts; the Apple iMac, however, can satisfy traditional and creative academics alike.
Despite the iMacs hefty price tag, back-to-schoolers and other day-to-day users are more likely to go for the iMac than those seeking high performance. The 1-GHz G4 processor is capable of handling most of the applications you need—with Office for the Mac—when taking classes, and with 512MB of RAM and the nVidia GeForce4 MX, the iMac can tackle advanced functions like video editing. (Our test unit came with 256MB of RAM, but for testing we added another 256MB.)
What helps give the iMac its "creative" edge is the Apple SuperDrive, a DVD-R/CD-RW combo drive. This, coupled with the included iMovie 3 software, can be used to turn your iMac into an amateur DVD movie-making machine. Students will enjoy all the video-editing capabilities, not to mention the capable photo- and sound-editing tools included. (The speakers arent all that bad, either.) Gamers, however, will still look to PCs for their fix.
Though not for power users, the iMac is suitable for the graphic designer, artist, director, or musician in the making.