In order to add memory, you had to remove a protective plastic shield, unplug EVERYTHING from the motherboard, take out ALL the cards and then remove the motherboard from the case.... In a word... PATHETIC....
Case that I like the best...
Tie, between the G5 and the Cube..
The G5 is the best for ease of access to everything inside, while the Cube just ... well it is a Cube..
I dont think it's fair to refer to the "G4 case design". This is and always will be the B&W G3 case design. B&Ws still rock, and I just heard yesterday that ATI will be releasing a PCI 9000 Radeon mac edition this year!!!!
I agree - the B&W was not only a breath of fresh air in aesthetic design, it was a revolution in functional design too. Just open the door and everything is there: RAM, PCI, HDs, CPU, Optical Drives, PS, Modem - etc. - very easy access.
I'll grant you that the B&W G3 saw the introduction of the form factor I so admire, but to my mind the colours and plastics shouted "toy computer" and I too found that combo garish to behold. I also would argue that the particular form factor design in question saw the pinnacle of its refinement in the last revisions of the G4 line-up. I have a DP 450, and while it's still very nice to look at, I admire the simpler, cleaner elegance of its successors.
Is this a desktop-only thread? My favourite case design for a Mac was the Powerbook 5xx series (aka "Blackbird").
In it's day, it was the first "desktop killer."
Introduced in 1994, the 5xx came with grayscale or colour LCD at 640x480, ethernet, dual battery compartment (hot swappable), stereo speakers on the top lid edges, trackpad dual-monitor (spanning) support, optional PCMCIA card cage, stereo-out and line-in, great keyboard...
The best case design, IMO, not visually, but rather for it's functionality.
The B&W G3 case/G4 was a revolutionary case design. At that point there was nothing like it around. No screws, no tools to open the case. Just flip a handle and the side folds down! You can easily get at your RAM, Cards, add an extra HD with Apple's legendary ease.
However as for visually, at that time all PC cases were beige. How exciting was that? Apple came along with this design and it was something no one had ever seen before, with the smooth lines, clear, white and blue plastics. In one word it was Awesome.
I am with da_jonesy I really liked the style of the color classic. I have always been a sucker for the all in one case. I like the style of the 17” and now 20” imacs.
I think these macs hit where the cube missed.
If the cube only looked more like a retro toaster you know the kind where the side panels of the toaster open up. Maybe just maybe it would have stood a chance. But Job’s went for the solid cube toaster look. Oh! Well!
However as I have stated earlier on this forum I have to defer to my wife when it comes to aesthetic considerations and she absolutely adored the cube. So there must be some good to the design.
Ditto re: the Color Classic. It was my first Mac, and such a tidy little beauty. I still have mine in the original box too, and I'll never part with it nor my 7200/90 which succeeded it.
I can't say I have an all-time favourite though, as there has been much to like in many different Macs over the years. The Cube, the CRT (tray and slot) and FP iMac, the Quicksilver & MDD, and the G5 (my current) are a perfect marriage of art, engineering, and functionality - so quintessentially Apple.