No Mac has changed less on the outside in the last few years than the iMac, but 2021 has brought about an end to all of that. Apple has announced a massive overhaul to its desktop all-in-one, a staple of offices and creative setups the world over for so many years. So what has Apple changed? What's in, and what's out? When will it be released, and how much will it cost? Here's everything we know about the 2021 iMac.
The short list
- Release date: Pre-order April 30, 2021 and available sometime in May
- Price: Starts at $1,299
- What's new?: All-new design, up to seven vibrant colors, M1 system-on-a-chip, new speaker system
How is the design new?
The new M1 iMac is thinner than ever, with the squared-off design language made familiar by the iPhone 12 lineup. At just 11.5 millimeters thin, it practically disappears when you view it from the side. The overall volume of the new iMac is 50% less than previous models. A new power connector attaches magnetically to the back of the display and features a durable braided 2-meter cable. There's an ethernet port on the power adapter. You'll get up to 4 USB-C ports, including 2 Thunderbolt ports on the back.
What colors are available?
Taste the rainbow! Choose from seven gorgeous shades that hearken back to the days of Bondi Blue. Your iMac can be green, yellow, orange, pink, purple, blue, or silver.
What is the display like?
The new iMacs feature a 24-Inch 4.5K Retina Display with slimmer borders and 11.3 million pixels. The screen will be brilliant with 500 nits of brightness, a P3 wide color gamut, and over a billion colors. You also get True Tone technology, which will automatically adjust the color temperature depending on your environment for the most natural viewing experience. An anti-reflective coating will round out the display's look.
What about the new processor?
As mentioned, the driving force behind all of Apple's Mac innovation right now is Apple silicon. And you'd best believe Apple has brought it to the latest iMac. The M1 chip will make the iMac faster than ever. With an 8-core CPU and 16-core Apple Neural Engine, you'll get up to 85% faster CPU performance. This will let you work with huge 100-megapixel photos in Lightroom, for example. In apps like Photoshop and Affinity Photo, you'll see up to 2x faster GPU speeds compared to the preview iMac. You'll be able to edit up to five streams of 4K footage or one stream of 8K footage in Final Cut Pro.
Is there a new camera?
Yes. The new iMac has a 1080p FaceTime HD camera which gives you high-quality video even in low light. Taking advantage of the image signal processor in the M1 chip and the Neural Engine, the camera image quality will be improved with better noise reduction, greater dynamic range, and improved auto exposure and white balance. This will be great for both your work and social video calls.
How about a new microphone to go with that camera?
Of course! The new iMac features a studio-quality three-microphone setup. This will give you clearer calls and voice recordings. The microphone array is positioned just so, which will reduce feedback background noise. So, your voice is the focus, making calls and recordings clearer. Your Zoom calls will be slightly less awkward now.
Surely there must be new speakers?
Indeed there are. You get two pairs of force-canceling woofers placed side by side, which gives you great bass without excess vibrations. Each pair will be balanced with a high-performance tweeter. All in all, you have a six-speaker sound system for strong bass but also lovely clear mids and highs. All of this plus advanced algorithms mean the iMac supports spatial audio when playing video with Dolby Atmos. You can bet that watching movies on this iMac will be a treat.
Did we get a new keyboard and Touch ID?
We sure did. Touch ID is in the new keyboard, which also has a dedicated emoji key. You can get it color-matched to your new iMac, along with the Magic Mouse or Magic Trackpad.
So when can I buy it?
You can order on Friday, April 30, and it will be available in the second half of May.
How much does it cost?
The iMac with 7-core GPU starts at $1,299. It is available in four colors: green, pink, blue, and silver. This model has an 8-core CPU, 8GB of unified memory, 256GB SSD, two Thunderbolt ports, Magic Keyboard, and Magic Mouse.
The iMac with 8-core GPU starts at $1,499. This one comes in seven color options: green, yellow, orange, pink, purple, blue, and silver. It has an 8-core CPU, 8GB of unified memory, 256GB SSD, two Thunderbolt ports, two additional USB 3 ports, Magic Keyboard with Touch ID, Magic Mouse, and Ethernet.
We may earn a commission for purchases using our links. Learn more.