Date: Monday, February 1st, 1999, 00:00
The new Apple Power Mac G4 systems have arrived and we were lucky enough to have one to review. The system that we tested is the Apple Power Mac G4 (400 MHz, DVD-ROM, 64MB RAM, 13GB hard disk, Apple 17″ Studio Display, Mac OS 8.6, and Zip Drive).
Setup was a snap, it took me less than 15 minutes to unpack all the boxes, connect all the appropriate cables and turn on the computer. In fact, it took us longer to clean off the desk to find a place for the computer. I like the fact that it only needs one power plug because the monitor plugs into the back of the computer. The USB keyboard is similar to the iMac’s keyboard, except for the color, which is Graphite. Unfortunately, the mouse is still the hockey-puck style version a la iMac’s mouse. Apple, if you are listening, please design a two button mouse with a scroll wheel and ergonomically comfortable for a person whose hand is bigger than a little kid. That was my only major gripe with the usability, everything else is well designed and perfect.
The software included was the standard fare of Apple goodies. I wish they included Apple works or some other programs, but I guess since this is the more “professional model”, they didn’t include much software with it. Connecting to the Internet was no problem, with Apple’s Internet Setup Assistant. The configuration we tested included 2 USB ports and 2 Firewire ports, allowing for easy upgrades and peripheral support. No SCSI port however, so you’ll have to buy a new SCSI card if you want to use your legacy SCSI devices. A 56Kbps modem is built-in as well as Ethernet.
Now for the performance: WOW! This puppy is fast, so damn fast that I was blinded by its speed. I was unable to run some MacBench results but I will post them as soon as I can. The DVD-Player was also well done, with nice smooth playback and sound.
Overall, I am very impressed with this computer and I hope Apple continues to produce more of these incredible machines. This Supercomputer is one bad mother (shut yo’ mouth).