My first iMac arrived with a jaundiced screen, so Apple sent me a replacement. After unpacking, it took only moments for me to diagnose the system as being flawed in the exact same manner. Yes friends, I'm two for two!

Just like my first 27-inch iMac, the screen is inflicted with the yellow screen issue, a color reproduction failure that moves from cool on top to warm on the bottom. Receiving two faulty products in a row is making it hard to believe that this issue isn't every bit as common as the Apple message boards would make it seem.

I'll admit, this iMac's screen isn't nearly as bad as my first's. The warm color gradient is subtler and more localized to the center. But the naked eye can see it, especially on a big, white webpage. And there's absolutely no reason that a consumer should be paying $2000+ ($2200 in my case) on any product that's anything but perfect.


Personally speaking, this setback means I'll have gone a month after dropping a few grand from my bank account without anything to show for it. A normal person might settle with product flaw, worn down by packing, shipping and customer service. The most sane would probably just file for a return.

I have a lot of respect for this "most sane" category.


Me? I basically mail back review products for a living, and the joy of this new toy has long been spoiled. So I'm going to do my damndest to bankrupt Apple with return shipping. I will send back these iMacs as many times as it takes for them to build one correctly. And every single time that they screw it up, I'm going to air their dirty laundry here. Feel free to read it or don't. It's my opinion that Apple's cyclical production issues can't be swept under the rug any longer.

You see, I received a lot of email after my initial problem post. About 80% of it was thanking me for bringing the issue to light. But about 20% suggested that this was somehow MY fault, you know, for not waiting for Apple to work out the kinks in a new line before purchasing it. As an educated consumer, I should have known that the first X% of Apple purchasers always get screwed by manufacturing problems, and my bad fortune was the result of a sort of consumer Darwinism.

I was simply unfit to buy the "ultimate iMac" with "the ultimate display."

Because that makes sense—Apple's lack of QA is my fault. Their inability to supply a functional screen—the centerpiece of this whole freaking product—is something I should have anticipated. Seriously, can you imagine if they built anything more crucial? Airbags? Plane engines? Condoms? The world would never turn a blind eye.

Apple, it's this simple: Get your shit together.

1. Openly acknowledge the issue.
2. Apologize (mock sincerity is fine if the public doesn't notice).
3. Fix the problem, which I'm betting is the LCD itself.
4. If you can't fix the problem, then just test for it at the factory. (It takes about 2 seconds.)
5. If the computer has a yellow screen, don't ship it out.

In fact, I don't even expect steps 1 or 2. If you just did 3-5, nobody would have even cared in the first place.