Apple overhauls 27-inch iMac, gives little love to 21.5-inch model

Apple today announced a hardware overhaul to its iMac all-in-one computers.

The 27-inch iMacs received the most notable upgrades. The new version, which bears the same look as the generation prior, still carries a gorgeous 27-inch Retina 5K display, but Apple now offers its nano-texture glass option to reduce glare.

The 27-inch model also sees its CPU updated to Intel’s 10th-gen processors, ranging from the 6-core Intel Core i5 processor to the 10-core Intel Core i9 processor. Graphics has been bumped up to the AMD Radeon Pro 5000 series with the Radeon Pro 5700XT as the top option. The maximum memory capacity has been doubled to 128GB. Unfortunately, there’s no change to the processor or RAM capacity of the 21.5-inch model. It’s still using Intel’s 7th and 8th-gen processors.

Apple 27-inch iMac

Moreover, the iMac Pros, the more powerful professional-grade iMacs, now comes standard with a 10-core Intel Xeon processor. It can be configured with up to an 18-core Intel processor, 256GB ECC memory, and an AMD Radeon Pro Vega 64X graphics. The performance, of course, comes at a substantially higher cost, starting at CA$6,299.

Apple iMac Pro. You can tell it’s pro by its dark grey finish.

Also new is the Apple T2 Security chip, a dedicated silicon used to encrypt data and secures the boot process. The T2 chip can also perform other neat functions like tone mapping and auto lighting controls when recording with the front-facing camera.

It’s 2020, yet both the 21.5-inch and 27-inch iMacs still start with just 8GB of RAM. Pushing the memory configuration to 16GB from the 8GB baseline costs CA$250. Ouch.

With that said, Apple has finally embraced SSDs across all of the 27-inch iMacs. The base model starts with just 256GB of storage, and upgrading that to the 512GB model is $250 more. While that’s a steep price for even the highest-end SSDs, stepping up to more the model with more storage also includes a slightly faster processor.

The SSD upgrade has carried over to the 21.5-inch iMac as well. Although customers opting for capacity over speed can forgo the SSD in the 21.5-inch model for a more capacious, albeit slower, Fusion Drive. The Fusion Drive has a small SSD portion for caching and uses traditional platter drives for storage.

Users working from home will appreciate Apple updating the webcam resolution to 1080p. This, combined with a new microphone array, should improve teleconferencing experience.

The new 21.5-inch, 27-inch iMac, and the iMac Pros are available now starting at CA$1,400, CA$2,400, and CA$6,300 respectively. They will start shipping later this week.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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Tom Li
Tom Li
Telecommunication and consumer hardware are Tom's main beats at Channel Daily News. He loves to talk about Canada's network infrastructure, semiconductor products, and of course, anything hot and new in the consumer technology space. You'll also occasionally see his name appended to articles on cloud, security, and SaaS-related news. If you're ever up for a lengthy discussion about the nuances of each of the above sectors or have an upcoming product that people will love, feel free to drop him a line at [email protected].

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