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by Jason Snell & Dan Moren

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By Stephen Hackett

The Hackett File: Mac in a box

Since the beginning in 1984, the all-in-one form factor has been synonymous with the Mac.

That very first Macintosh, with its 9-inch, 512 x 342 display in the same 16 pound case as its 8 MHz processor became the template for a whole slew of “compact” Macs that would follow it, ending with the Macintosh Color Classic II (also badged as the Performa 275) in May 1994.

After that, Apple’s all-in-ones got bigger and more bloated. The LC 520 ushered in a new design, built around a 14″ color CRT. This updated case, with its CRT atop a narrower base isn’t nearly as iconic as the compact Macs, but was used throughout the 90s on a whole big mess of Performas.

The Power Macintosh 5000 series continued the trend, using an ever bigger display, and adding more serious horsepower to the AIO than it had seen before.

Throughout this time, Apple was still shipping desktop Macs that sat horizontally on the desk under a CRT as well as both mini and full-sized towers.…

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