Which Mac are You?

Apple has given a lot of thought to the issue of what you need from a computer and why. The result is a range of Macs that covers every possibility. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a student, a businessperson, a multimedia professional, or someone who wants a fully-rounded computing and entertainment centre for home: there’s a Mac that provides exactly what you require.


Mac Pro


At the top of the Mac range is the Mac Pro. This is a customisable tower with Quad Core Intel Xeon processors that deliver astonishing speed and efficiency. When these processors combine with the remarkable memory, storage and graphics that Apple makes available, you have something close to the perfect computer.


In this sense, you can’t do better than a Mac Pro. The average user wouldn’t need to upgrade for years – and even then, Apple has designed the Mac Pro in such a way that extra memory, storage, and better graphics cards are easy to install. But the Mac Pro is a substantial, powerful machine, and the average user will only use a fraction of its capabilities. The Mac Pro’s appeal is mainly to those professionals who use computers for the most complex video, graphics and sound applications. At the level of sophisticated 3D image creation, there’s nothing to beat it.


Mac Mini


If you want an economical home computer that allows you to work imaginatively with music, films, photos, and the Internet, you should consider the Mac Mini.


Compared to the Mac Pro, the Mac Mini is tiny: 16.5 cm square by 5 cm tall (6.5 inches by 2 inches). Don’t be deceived by the modest size, however. The Mac Mini contains an Intel Core 2 Duo processor (either 1.83GHz or 2GHz); an 80GB or 120GB hard drive; a slot-loading Combo or SuperDrive; and built-in wireless connection. It also has features such as four USB 2.0 ports, a FireWire port, audio minijacks, and a DVI/VGA connection. All of this comes in a neat and stylish, anodised aluminium casing.


What you get with a Mac Mini, therefore, is a perfect opportunity to upgrade your home computer instantly. Simply plug your existing keyboard, monitor, mouse, printer and devices into the ports and you have the Mac OS X v10.5 Leopard operating system and iLife ’08 ready for use. You can even run the Mac Mini alongside your existing home computer.


MacBook


If you prefer the freedom of a laptop but also want a great all-round computing experience, take a look at the MacBook. Apple has fused portability with power to create a machine that gives the majority of computer users everything they want.


As with the Mac Mini, Apple employs Intel Core 2 Duo processors, but with the MacBook these are either 2.1GHz or 2.4GHz. There are also options of 1GB or 2GB of memory, and 120GB, 160GB or 250GB of hard drive storage.


What’s more, you never grow tired of showing just how good the MacBook looks. It has a tough polycarbonate casing in white or black, and a glossy screen that never fails to impress. And with its AirPort Extreme 802.11n Wi-Fi, you can connect your MacBook to the Internet wherever you happen to be: in the office, at home, at school, or wherever Wi-Fi is available.


MacBook Air


If you’re looking for a laptop, you have to think about the MacBook Air as an option. Above all else, what the MacBook Air offers is uncompromising elegance. It weighs just 1.36 kg (3 pounds) and is 0.4 cm (1/6 inch) at its thinnest point and just 1.94 cm (3/4 inch) at its thickest.


Despite the weight and dimensions, you get a 13 inch screen; a 1.6GHz or 1.8GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor; 2GB of memory; an 80GB hard drive or 64GB solid state drive; and both Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity. In other words, you still have the functions of a great quality laptop.


MacBook Pro


It’s better to describe the remaining laptop in the Mac range, the MacBook Pro, as a portable desktop. This description reflects the power of a computer that is ideal for the professional on the move or for the laptop owner who simply wants the best.


The features of the MacBook Pro are stunning and include 15 or 17 inch LED backlit widescreen displays and a trackpad that uses many of the Multi-Touch aspects of the Apple iPhone. Other technical specs include 2.4 GHz or 2.5GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processors; 2GB of memory and up to 250 GB of hard drive capacity. A further feature worth noting for anyone who uses a laptop to demonstrate applications to business colleagues is the superb NVIDIA GeForce 8600M GT graphics card. This shows creative and scientific work to its best advantage.


The reasonable weight of 2.45 kg (5.4 pounds) for the 15 inch model and the compact 2.59 cm (1 inch) depth of the aluminium shell further confirm that the MacBook Pro is the finest business laptop around.


iMac


You cannot accuse the MacBook Pro of being a standard laptop; similarly, Apple’s popular iMac is far from being a conventional desktop. The 20 inch and 24 inch screens display startlingly accurate images backed by ATI Radeon or NVIDIA graphics cards, and the hard drives, ranging from 250GB to 500GB, are sufficient to support most applications and to store plenty of documents, films, music and digital photos.


Other iMac features include the built-in iSight camera and microphone, which are great for chatting to family and friends around the world or to set up business video conferences. And thanks to Apple’s foresight, you can run Windows and all Microsoft applications such as Office 2008.


All this and more helps make the iMac an excellent all-rounder with configurations that cover almost every aspect of home and business use. What’s more, the iMac saves space: everything fits into the astonishingly compact area behind the screen. The iMac is truly a practical, versatile and fast machine for everyday use.

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