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Post iPad, Build 2.5

It has been over two years since my last upgrade, but dollars are tight so my blogging tools are getting a refresh but not a complete makeover. That said, my original Apple tablet has been replaced by a much newer, faster and more capable iPad 3 with Retina Display housed in a ZAGGFolio case with keyboard.

In addition to better more reliable wi-fi reception, the iPad 3′s Retina display is really nice and pretty much everything but the iPad 4 looks janky by comparison. Further, webpages snap into place and gaming performance is greatly improved — a big refurbished value at $379.

Though a new iMac wasn’t in the cards this year, a RAM upgrade was an absolute necessity as 3GB just wasn’t cutting it. That said, my 2007 iMac is now maxed out with 6GB of memory, which gives OS X Mountain Lion ample elbow room — say goodbye to pageouts and the attendant beach balls.

Blogging Tools: Desktop

2.0GHz iMac w/ 20-inch — 6GB, 500GB, 8X SuperDrive
— If ya just gotta have a legacy iMac, Mac of All Trades is great place to get one or just a newer model from Apple.
— A year newer than my previous iMac (2006), but a huge leap forward in industrial design and display quality
— 06/12 added Seagate Barracuda 7200 500 GB SATA 6.0 Gb-s 16 MB Cache 3.5-Inch Internal Bare Drive ST500DM002
— 12/12 added Crucial 4GB Single DDR2 667MHz (PC2-5300) CL5 SODIMM 200-Pin Notebook Memory Module CT51264AC667, Mountain Lion now creamy smooth

Apple Keyboard w/ Numeric Keypad (wired)
— This is the best keyboard I’ve owned since the ’90s.

Apple Magic Trackpad
Magic Trackpad completes OS X Lion (Amazon, $68)
— Don’t throw away batteries — Duracell Value Charger With 4AA Pre Charged Rechargeable Nimh Batteries, CEF14DX4

(1) Neptune 500GB external enclosure

Airport Extreme Base Station ($80, Craigslist)
— What a huge difference this dual-band router/hub has made, extending wi-fi to the entire house and spreading it well out into the yard. Chances are whatever you’re using now isn’t as good, but shop around for the best deal.
— My previous router/hub was a D-Link DI-524, which was often flaky and offered rather limited range.

Cables To Go 7-Port USB 2.0 Aluminum Hub
— Finally enough (powered) ports and stylish, too!

Blogging Tools: Mobile

16GB iPad 3 w/ Wi-Fi (12/12)
— This mobile wonder replaced my 2010 iPad which replaced an Early 2008 MacBook.
My Christmas iPad: One buyer’s guide to value

ZAGGfolio for iPad 2/3 Carbon with Silver Keyboard (12/12)
— An indispensable tool for mobile blogging with the iPad

iPhone 4
— Durable, beautiful, fast and a really good camera

JVC Marshmallow In-Ear Headphones, Black
— The best “cheap” ($10) in-ear phones I’ve used to date.

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