Apple's New Professional Power Macintosh Computers Feature Performance, Design Innovation, and Aggressive Pricing

New Line Includes High-Performance PowerPC Processors at 233 MHz

CUPERTINO, Calif.-- Feb. 17, 1997--Apple Computer, Inc. today introduced its new line of Power Macintosh computers for business, professional publishing, and Internet/media authoring. The new line includes a high-performance Power Macintosh running at 233 MHz, as well as fast 200-MHz systems at prices ranging from approximately U.S. $1,700 (for a general-productivity system) to approximately U.S. $4,700 (for a top-of-the-line multiprocessor system for professional graphics). The high-end systems in the new line feature an innovative tower industrial design that makes it easy to add new components--a design that is unmatched by any other PC manufacturer.

All of the new systems are designed to run future versions of the Mac OS as well as Apple's next-generation Macintosh system software--code named Rhapsody. In addition, most of the new computers are designed with the processor on an easily removable card that can be replaced with a faster processor card when Apple or a third-party manufacturer makes one available.

"The new Power Macintosh line continues to set the standard for performance and innovation," said Guerrino DeLuca, Apple executive vice president of marketing. "These are faster, well-designed, high-quality systems, priced very aggressively. They also feature the built-in technology that makes it easy for our customers to get high-quality results fast--especially in the areas of graphics, multimedia, and Internet communications."

The Power Macintosh line is widely acknowledged as the leading platform for web authoring (64% market share according to Web Week) and CD-ROM content creation (54% market share according to GISTICS). A recently completed five-year study by GISTICS Inc. of Larkspur, Calif., found that professionals who create digital media realize higher profitability, higher productivity, and faster product cycles when using a Macintosh computer. The study shows that these professionals enjoy profits 32% higher than the industry average, 73% higher that those using SGI systems and 108% higher than those using Windows-based systems.

Four of Apple's new Power Macintosh computers are designed specifically for these graphics and multimedia professionals. With a 233-MHz and a 200-MHz 604e PowerPC processor (respectively), the Power Macintosh 9600/233 and 9600/200 improve on the design of the Power Macintosh 9500/200, introduced in August and a favorite of professional publishers. The Power Macintosh 9600/233 and 9600/200 include a new video card--the IMS Twin Turbo 128 M4A--for improved graphics performance and the new easy-access tower design.

The 9600/200MP offers the same capabilities as the 9600/200 with an additional 200-MHz 604e processor. When using applications that support the Mac's multiprocessor capabilities, customers can realize performance gains of more than 50% on the MP system. Applications that currently support the MP system include Adobe Photoshop, After Effects and Premiere, Strata StudioPro Blitz, Deneba Canvas, ElectricImage Animation System and Metrowerks CodeWarrior. Several other software developers are shipping or have announced products that support the MP capabilities.

The Power Macintosh 9600/233, 9600/200 and the Power Macintosh 9600/200MP come with 32 MB RAM (expandable to 768 MB), 4 MB VRAM, a very fast, high-output, 4 GB hard drive, a 1.4 MB Apple SuperDrive floppy disk drive, a 12x-speed CD-ROM drive, 512K level 2 cache, 6 PCI expansion slots and built-in 10Base-T Ethernet networking.

The Power Macintosh 8600/200 builds on the design of the Power Macintosh 8500/180, introduced in August and popular among media authors. Like the 9600/200, the 8600/200 features a 200-MHz 604e PowerPC processor, the new tower design, and a 12x-speed CD-ROM drive. In addition, the 8600/200 has a built-in Iomega Zip drive, near-broadcast-quality video input/output capabilities and built-in graphics acceleration. The Power Macintosh 8600/200 includes 32 MB RAM (expandable to 512 MB), 2 MB VRAM (expandable to 4 MB), a fast 2 GB hard drive, a 1.4 MB Apple SuperDrive floppy disk drive, 256K level 2 cache, 3 PCI expansion slots and built-in 10Base-T Ethernet networking.

Apple's mid-range Power Macintosh 7300/200 and 7300/180 systems offer high performance for small- and medium-size businesses, and for running productivity and Internet applications in organizations of any size. These systems feature a 604e PowerPC processor running at either 200 MHz (with 32 MB RAM) or 180 MHz (with 16 MB RAM). Both configurations have a new security feature for restricting access to the computer's internal components, a 12x-speed CD-ROM drive, a 2 GB hard drive, 1.4 MB Apple SuperDrive floppy disk drive, 256K of level 2 cache, 2 MB VRAM (expandable to 4 MB), 3 PCI expansion slots and built-in 10Base-T Ethernet networking.

The Power Macintosh 9600/233, 9600/200, 9600/200 MP, 8600/200, 7300/200 and 7300/180 come with Mac OS Version 7.5.5, which can be upgraded to Mac OS 7.6.1 for the shipping/handling fee of U.S. $9.95. For the first time in the professional Power Macintosh line, all of the systems include an AppleDesign keyboard and a mouse. These systems also include Data Viz translators (which help convert files between Mac OS and Windows formats), the Apple Internet Connection Kit (which includes Netscape Navigator), and America Online software.

Replaceable Processor Cards

The Power Macintosh 9600/233, 9600/200, 9600/200 MP, 8600/200, 7300/200 and 7300/180 have processors mounted on an easily removable processor card and are all capable of accepting faster processor cards at such time as these products become available from Apple or a third-party manufacturer. Apple now offers a 180-MHz processor card that can replace the processor card in any Power Macintosh 7500, 7600, 8500 or 9500 system.

Power Macintosh 4400/200 Included in Product Line

The new addition to the Power Macintosh line for business is the Power Macintosh 4400/200. With an estimated retail price of approximately U.S. $1,700, the Power Macintosh 4400/200 is a fast, general-productivity business computer with built-in 10Base-T Ethernet networking. The Power Macintosh 4400/200 has features valued by business customers. It has a 200-MHz 603e PowerPC processor, 16 MB of RAM (expandable to 160 MB), a 2 GB hard drive, an 8x-speed CD-ROM drive, 2 PCI expansion slots, 256K of level 2 cache and 2 MB of VRAM (expandable to 4 MB). The Power Macintosh 4400/200 includes a keyboard and mouse, and Mac OS System 7.5.3, which can be upgraded to Mac OS 7.6.1 for the shipping/handling fee of U.S. $9.95.

PC Compatibility

All of the Power Macintosh systems in the new line are compatible with Apple's 7-inch 100-MHz PC compatibility card and 12-inch 100-MHz Pentium PC compatibility card. With one of these PC compatibility cards installed, customers can use just one desktop system to run applications for both Mac OS and for DOS and Windows. Apple intends to foster cross-platform capabilities and expects to offer improved versions of its PC compatibility cards and preconfigured systems in the future.

 U.S. Pricing and Availability

The Power Macintosh 9600/233 is expected to be available by May, 1997. The estimated price range for the product is U.S. $4,200 to $4,300.

The Power Macintosh 9600/200, 9600/200MP, 8600/200, 7300 and 4400 systems are expected to be available in March in the United States with the following configurations and estimated price ranges:

Power Macintosh Model Estimated Price Range
9600/200MP32/4GB/12xCD/512K L2/video card/MP U.S. $ 4,700 - $ 4,800
9600/233 32/4GB/12xCD/512K L2/video card U.S. $ 4,200 - $ 4,300
9600/200 32/4GB/12xCD/512K L2/video card U.S. $ 3,700 - $ 3,800
8600/200 32/2GB/12xCD/256K L2 U.S. $ 3,200 - $ 3,300
7300/200 32/2GB/12xCD/256K L2 U.S. $ 2,700 - $ 2,800
7300/180 16/2GB/12xCD/256K L2 U.S. $ 2,300 - $ 2,400
4400/200 16/2GB/8xCD/256K L2 U.S. $ 1,700 - $ 1,750

The 180-MHz Processor Upgrade is available in the United States for the estimated retail price of U.S. $ 600.

Subject to limited availability, the following PC cards are available in the United States:

PC Compatibility Card Estimated Retail Price
M4091LL/C PC Compatibility Card 100-MHz 586 (7 inch) U.S. $ 800
M4092LL/A PC Compatibility Card 100 -MHz Pentium (12 inch) U.S. $1,050

International Availability and Pricing

Pricing and availability for the new professional Power Macintosh computers vary by country. The 7300/180 is not offered in Japan and Europe and the 8600/200 is not offered in Japan. Also, some additional Power Macintosh models are available in some countries, including the Power Macintosh 7300/166 (in Japan and Europe) and the Power Macintosh 7600/200 (in Japan).

Apple Computer, Inc., a recognized innovator in the information industry and leader in multimedia technologies, creates powerful solutions based on easy-to-use personal computers, servers, peripherals, software, handheld computers and Internet content. Headquartered in Cupertino, California, Apple develops, manufactures, licenses and markets solutions, products, technologies and services for business, education, consumer, entertainment, scientific and engineering and government customers in more than 140 countries.

Nancy Morrison
Apple Computer, Inc.
(408) 862-6200

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