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What are the differences between the White iMac "Core 2 Duo" models?
Please note that the "White" iMac Core 2 Duo models have been discontinued. These systems were replaced by the "Aluminum" iMac Core 2 Duo line.
The "White" 17-Inch and 20-Inch iMac "Core 2 Duo" models use enclosures that effectively are identical to the iMac "Core Duo" systems before them, and likewise have the entire computer tucked discreetly behind the flat-panel display. The 24-Inch iMac "Core 2 Duo" model, to accommodate the larger display, uses a new housing that shares the same design aesthetic.
Photo Credit: Apple Computer
All the iMac "Core 2 Duo" models -- the iMac "Core 2 Duo" 1.83 17-Inch (IG), iMac "Core 2 Duo" 2.0 GHz 17-Inch, iMac "Core 2 Duo" 2.16 20-Inch, and iMac "Core 2 Duo" 2.16 24-Inch -- have Intel "Core 2 Duo" processors -- with two independent processor "cores" on a single silicon chip and a shared level 2 cache (2 MB on the entry-level 1.83 GHz model, and 4 MB on the others). The "Core 2 Duo" processors are pin-compatible with the previously released "Core Duo" processors, and consequently, the iMac "Core 2 Duo" models also feature a 667 MHz system bus and 667 MHz PC2-5300 DDR SDRAM.
With the exception of a single Firewire "800" port on the 24-Inch model (in lieu of a second Firewire "400" port), connectivity is the same as the "Core Duo" models -- three USB 2.0 ports, two Firewire "400" ports, built-in AirPort Extreme, Bluetooth 2.0+EDR (except the entry-level model), and Gigabit Ethernet, as well as mini-DVI. Each system also includes an integrated iSight video camera, built-in stereo speakers, and a 7200 RPM hard drive.
The entry-level iMac "Core 2 Duo" 1.83 17-Inch model is quite a bit different than the higher-end models, as it uses cheaper and slower Intel GMA 950 "integrated graphics". It also has a DVD-ROM/CD-RW "Combo" drive instead of the DVD+R DL capable "SuperDrive", 512 MB of RAM instead of 1 GB, and a 160 GB hard drive. It lacks Bluetooth and the Apple Remote that shipped standard with the other models.
If you read "integrated graphics" and thought that the entry-level configuration seems similar to the education-only iMac "Core Duo" 1.83 17-Inch (IG) model, you would be correct. The only substantial differences between the iMac "Core 2 Duo" 1.83 17-Inch and the previously released model for education are that the "Core 2 Duo" system has a "Core 2 Duo" processor and a 160 GB hard drive instead of an 80 GB drive.
All differences between the standard configurations of the systems are summarized in this handy chart:
|iMac "Core 2 Duo"||1.83 17"||2.0 17"||2.16 20"||2.16 24"|
|Processor Speed:||1.83 GHz||2.0 GHz†||2.16 GHz†||2.16 GHz†|
|L2 Cache:||2 MB||4 MB||4 MB||4 MB|
|Hard Drive Size:||160 GB||160 GB||250 GB||250 GB|
|Standard RAM:||512 MB||1 GB||1 GB||1 GB|
|Maximum RAM:||2 GB||3 GB||3 GB||3 GB|
|Video System:||GMA 950||Radeon X1600||Radeon X1600||GeForce 7300GT†|
|Video Memory:||64 MB||128 MB||128 MB†||128 MB†|
|Optical Drive:||DVD/CD-RW||DVD+R DL||DVD+R DL||DVD+R DL|
|Firewire 800:||None||None||None||One Port|
|Apple Model No:||MA710LL||MA590LL||MA589LL||MA456LL|
†Additionally the 2.0 17" model could be upgraded to a 2.16 GHz (T7400) processor for US$100, and the 2.16 20" and 2.16 24" could be upgraded to a 2.33 GHz (T7600) processor for US$250. The graphics in the 2.16 20" model could be upgraded to 256 MB of GDDR3 SDRAM for US$75, and the graphics in the 2.16 24" model could be upgraded with a NVIDIA GeForce 7600GT with 256 MB of GDDR3 memory for US$125.
Please refer to the Ultimate Mac Comparison feature to dynamically compare any Intel iMac model to any other G3 or later Mac.