A Mac mini with HDMI. Makes sense, right? Well, it hasn’t to Apple so far, but it looks like it just might be ready to change its tune. That’s according to AppleInsider, at least, which has it from “two people familiar with the matter” that prototypes of a Mac mini with an HDMI port have been seen making the rounds in the usual inner circles. At least one of those prototypes was also said to be based on NVIDIA’s MCP89 chipset, which means that any forthcoming Mac mini revision would pass over the latest Core i3, i5 and i7 processors in favor of older Core 2 Duos if it is indeed the chipset used in the final product. Unfortunately, there’s nothing more specific than “this year” in terms of a rumored release date, and this is still just one rumor about what would be a fairly big shift in Apple’s strategy — so, you know, keep that in mind before you start ripping apart your current HTPC setup.
Although it’s technically possible to use the gorgeous IPS display in the 27-inch iMac as a standalone monitor, the feature’s been pretty limited in practice, since it only works with other DisplayPort devices like the unibody MacBooks. That’s about to change thanks to Apogee, which just posted up a video demo of an as-yet-unnamed HDMI-to-DisplayPort adapter being used to play Xbox 360, PS3, and — yes, it’s true — Blu-ray movies on Apple’s latest all-in-one. Never thought you’d see the day, did you? Apogee hasn’t disclosed pricing or availability yet, but we’re told more info is coming soon –we’d guess sometime around CES.
Minimalism and a tidy working space are the keywords of nowadays expectations of us. I mean, I really like keeping my desk free and clean-looking. This device has been expected for a while since it makes things simpler, more elegant and frees up more space on the desk.
Named BookArc, it is a vertical stand design to fit Apple laptops, from the slim MacBook Air all the way to the MacBook Pro, turning any of those into a desktop computer, when connected to an external display.
Besides the neat minimal look, there’s also a performance enhancement, even if it’s not only featured with the BookArc. Any time a MacBook is running closed, it will dedicate the full video memory to the external monitor, instead of sharing between internal and external displays, which result in increased speed regarding Photoshop, Aperture, iPhoto and other graphics-needy application work-flows.
“Our vision behind BookArc was twofold,” said Andrew Green, co-founder and design principal of Twelve South. “First, we see the MacBook as a beautiful piece of art that deserves to be put on display. Second, using your laptop as a desktop when not on the road is how many Mac users work today, including myself. Running the MacBook in a BookArc tucked behind a beautiful Cinema Display frees up valuable space and provides a less cluttered modern-looking workspace.”
To increase product compliance with the various MacBook models, the BookArc comes with three different sized soft silicone cushions, included in the box, that you can place in the heavy gauge steel stand. With a compact footprint of only 10 x 4 inches, a fraction of what a MacBook normally takes up, it also sports silicone footpads to protect the surface of your desk from scratches, at the same time offering a slip-proof grip.
ou can purchase this as we speak, from the Apple Store and retailers, for $49.99 and they even came with an offer for studios, delivering the BookArc like bottles of beer, in a six-pack, for $249.99.
Sunday marked the 20th anniversary of the first portable Macintosh computer, the aptly-named Macintosh Portable. While it was indeed portable, it was anything but svelte. Apple’s first non-desktop Mac weighed in at nearly 16lb and was a beast at 4″ thick, 15.25″ wide and 14.8″ deep. While the 9.8″ 1-bit, 640×400 display is quaint by today’s standards, it was active-matrix, an expensive rarity in the days of passive matrix portable computers. Unfortunately, it wasn’t backlit.
The Portable sold for a whopping $6,500 when it was launched in September 1989, and it’s hardly surprising that it was never a top-seller. The hardware was modest, even by contemporary standards. It rocked a 16MHz 68000 CPU and shipped with 1MB of RAM, as well as a 40MB hard drive. It was updated in February 1991 with a backlit display, but Apple snuffed out the Portable line in October of that year when it launched its first PowerBook, the PowerBook 100.
In recognition of the 20-year anniversary of the Macintosh Portable, let’s look back at some of the superstars of Apple’s laptop lineup—as well as a couple of duds that should never have made it out of Cupertino.