| Cult of Mac

New iMacs Feature Intel’s Unreleased Z68 Chipset

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Apple’s new family of iMac all-in-ones released earlier this week boast an Intel BD82Z68 platform controller hub that isn’t scheduled for release until May 11th. The Z68 chip, designed for Sandy Bridge 1155, was first discovered by TonyMacx86 and later confirmed in an iFixit teardown.

The Z68 allows for solid-state drive data caching when a system is equipped with a combination of storage drives. So users could install a small, relatively cheap SSD along with their traditional hard disk drive and have the SSD serve as a cache – dramatically increasing access speeds to their files and applications. The new iMacs can be ordered with both an SSD and a traditional hard disk drive installed, and the Z68 can allow users to see this combination as just one drive on their Mac.

Why You Should Get an SSD With Your New iMac & Why You Should Get it from Apple

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Apple’s new family of iMacs launched today, featuring Intel’s latest Core i5 and i7 processors, 4GB of RAM, and 3x faster graphics; all the ingredients needed to bake a super speedy all-in-one. However, there’s one thing missing from Apple’s lineup of four ‘ready-made’ iMacs, and that’s a solid-state drive. Without one your shiny new iMac might not be as fast as you expected it to be.

Crucial Launches New M4 SSD Lineup Boasting Faster Write Speeds

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Crucial has just launched its new M4 lineup of 2.5-inch solid-state drives, which are the successors to the RealSSD C300 range, and boast faster read and write speeds. The M4 uses 25nm technology NAND flash created by its parent company Micron, and is available in 64GB, 128GB, 256GB and 512GB models.

Crucial claim the new M4 SSDs reach read speeds of up to 415MBps – a 17% increase over its predecessor – while write speeds are up 20% with speeds of up to 260MBps.

As with all SSDs, however, this technology doesn’t come cheap. The 64GB M4 will cost you $130, which rises to $250 for the 128GB, $500 for the 256GB and $1000 for the 512GB. All can be purchased directly from Crucial and include a three-year warranty.

While the M4s are pretty pricey, solid-state drives are a great way of improving the speed of your Mac. Traditional hard drives are famous for being the bottleneck in modern-day Macs, and since the release of the incredibly nippy second-generation MacBook Air, many users have realized the difference an SSD can make and have adopted the new technology. Recent tests have proven that MacBook Pros equipped with SSD drives are significantly faster than those with traditional HDDs.

[via Macworld]