AAPL Stock: 117.34 ( -0.96 )

Printed from

Apple to intro quad-core iMacs in January?

updated 07:50 am EST, Wed November 19, 2008

Quad Core iMac in January

Apple is waiting on a special round of Intel chips to update its iMacs with quad-core processors, according to claims by PC makers. The California company is reportedly hinging its move on a new set of desktop Core 2 Quad processors due in January that are specifically power-optimized for all-in-one desktops, dropping the thermal peak power from a too-high 95W down to 65W. They would have the same performance characteristics as existing processors and include a 2.33GHz Q8200 with 4MB of Level 2 cache, a 2.66GHz Q9400 with 6MB of cache and a 2.83GHz Q9550 with the full 12MB of cache.

In addition to the two extra cores, which would significantly improve the performance of iMacs for multi-core aware tasks, the systems would also have a faster 1,333MHz system bus and would be significantly less expensive on average than the dual-core mobile processors Apple has used to date. The 2.33GHz, 2.66GHz and 2.83GHz chips cost $245, $320 and $369 in large batches, according to the report.

A move to desktop-class processors would be uncharacteristic for the Mac producer, which has so far depended on the lower power and heat of mobile Core 2 Duos both to keep the iMac casing slim and to reduce the amount of necessary cooling; readers should be cautious before accepting the claims. However, an optimized processor potentially mitigates these problems while letting Apple either trim costs or upgrade other components of the system.

If accurate, the news would see Acer, Dell and HP also join Apple in launching either all-in-one or small form factor desktops based on the new Core 2 Quad variants, with ASUS also mulling a decision of its own. Dell would most likely use the chip for an update to the XPS One while HP would likely update its TouchSmart PCs with the new chips.

by MacNN Staff



  1. bobolicious

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Core envy...

    ...after shelling out for Christmas...? I suppose Apple is holding back on what I suspect may be a complete lineup revamp (based on the new monitor connector switch) perhaps in order to smooth out sales through a recessionary winter, however it may undermine goodwill with Christmas buyers when their shiny new iMacs induce a holiday hangover

  1. gudin

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Dude, they do this close to every single year. New consumer machines at MW January.

    Besides, for most consumer tasks quad core doesn't give you much more than dual core.

  1. Oneota

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Not Core i7?

    Seems odd that Apple would release a new Core 2-based product now that Core i7 is out in the wild.

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Re: Christmas

    Besides, for most consumer tasks quad core doesn't give you much more than dual core.

    Then why are they sticking them in to a consumer box? Oh, right, so they can keep those prices high.

  1. Guest

    Joined: Dec 1969


    midi tower or mac mini

    New midi tower or mac mini please.

    I don't have a mac, and I'm not going to buy one whilst the choice is a good but very expensive tower workstation, S***** all in one systems that don't let me use my existing (superior) monitors and a 'laptop in a box' that doesn't support multimonitor and has a c*** graphics chipset.

    A new midi tower would fix that; alternatively upgrade the sodding Mac Mini, please!

  1. Peter Bonte

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Re: Christmas

    "Then why are they sticking them in to a consumer box?"

    To run the latest WoW update, lag galore. :/

  1. lockhartt

    Joined: Dec 1969



    "Besides, for most consumer tasks quad core doesn't give you much more than dual core."

    Not particularly true for two reasons -

    1) most Apple users make more use of multimedia creation tools than PC users

    2) Snow Leopard will be highly multicore optimized, providing more benefit to more tasks than before - presumably as long as the software is Cocoa and doesn't bypass the OS... which excludes developers like, say, Adobe. Sorry, I can't resist giving Adobe yet another jab for still being so entrenched in Carbon ;)

  1. ggirton

    Joined: Dec 1969


    there will be no midi

    There will be no midi tower from apple. Get over it.

  1. Constable Odo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Those that are unhappy

    paying Apple's prices should go to Dell or Acer to buy computers. If there's no apparent advantage to pay what Apple is asking then why even concern oneself with the how much they charge. No point in going into a Lamborghini dealership to ask why they don't lower the price of a Murcielago so you can afford it. They'd probably just laugh and call security.

    I feel that if Apple wants to stick a quad-core chip into an iMac and it costs more, then more power to Apple as long as there's plenty of people that can afford to buy them. I do expect them to have high quality worksmanship along with the power. I think Apple will have a leg up on the other brands. I'm not against Asus, Dell or Acer since they cater to those that like those products and people should have a choice.

    As a long-term Apple investor, I want Apple's margins to stay high and if it's at the expense of ignoring the poverty-class buyer, so be it. I'd rather Apple slow market share growth to Microsoft if the product quality has to be compromised.

    Won't a quad-core chip be useful in running several apps at a time or running Parallels or VMWare virtual machines? I like running those VM apps and I definitely want quad-cores if it will enhance their use.

  1. Guest

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Core 2 Quad

    There will be the quad at 2GHz with a TDP of 45 watts which is nearly the same as the dual 3.06 current top of the iMac line. Unless Apple reengineers the cooling on the iMac chassis, it's more likely they will offer this option. Then again they may leave the iMac dual core until 3Q 2009 when the mobile quads from the new Nehalem Core i7 series are available. By then Snow Leapard should be out or at least closer (I hear rumors of a delay to Q1 2010)

Login Here

Not a member of the MacNN forums? Register now for free.


Network Headlines

Follow us on Facebook


Most Popular


Recent Reviews

Ultimate Ears Megaboom Bluetooth Speaker

Ultimate Ears (now owned by Logitech) has found great success in the marketplace with its "Boom" series of Bluetooth speakers, a mod ...

Kinivo URBN Premium Bluetooth Headphones

We love music, and we're willing to bet that you do, too. If you're like us, you probably spend a good portion of your time wearing ...

Jamstik+ MIDI Controller

For a long time the MIDI world has been dominated by keyboard-inspired controllers. Times are changing however, and we are slowly star ...


Most Commented