Do you want an Apple for Christmas?

If you’re planning on giving or receiving a Mac for the holidays, it might be wise to start shopping early this year.

The computer company that many had left for dead a couple of years ago has the problem that many others can only dream of: a huge backlog of orders. Under the guidance of founder Steve Jobs, (who was deposed as CEO of the company several years ago only to return and lead the company to its current glory) Apple has introduced a stream of new products that have definitely caught the consumer’s fancy.

It all started with the cleverly designed (and marketed) iMac, which was the first true innovation the computer industry has seen in years. Apple kept the momentum up with the powerful G3 and G4 models, and the recent introduction of the clamshell iBook notebook computer has spurred sales to even greater heights.

In the meantime, the company’s stock is reaching record highs, but analysts are starting to worry that Apple’s latest success could prove its undoing, as sales are lost due to order backlogs. In Toronto, the wait for an iBook has now reached two months in some cases. Apple says it has the problems in hand.

“We’re in high-volume production d are shipping all product lines in high volume. We’re thrilled that demand is so great,” said Apple spokesperson Katie Cotton, not commenting about the availability of specific products.

A new low-priced version of the iMac has not yet been shipped to retailers, and is a cause for a concern over the busy holiday season, when demand is expected to be especially strong. That system is expected to be in stock by November 15. But if a Mac of any type is on your wish list, the best advice is to put your order in now.