Apple today announced iMac updates at its event in Brooklyn, New York. As expected, the updates improve desktop performance with new processors, while retaining the design we know iMacs have had over the years.
Apple says the new system was designed from the ground up around the M1 system on a chip (SoC), allowing for a much smaller motherboard and cooling system than in the company’s previous Intel-powered iMacs. The overall volume of the new iMac is down 50 percent and is just 11mm thick, with a single pane of glass spanning the entire front of the unit.
The iMac comes with a 4.5K Retina 24-inch display with very small bezels, resulting in a device that’s not much bigger than previous 21-inch iMacs. The new displays also include TruTone technology, which dynamically adjusts color temperature in response to changes in the surrounding ambient light.
The M1 iMac’s 1080p camera has also been improved, taking advantage of the M1’s built-in image processing and neural engine. Tone mapping automatically increases detail and reduces noise in highlighted areas. Likewise, beamforming on the microphone array improves the quality of your voice (and reduces ambient noise) during video conferencing.
The new iMac includes a six-speaker system, which Apple has confidently named “the best sound system ever in a Mac.” The system supports spatial audio for both games and movies.
Like M1 Macbooks and Mac Minis, the M1-powered iMac wakes up from sleep mode almost instantly. Apple also says apps like Xcode, Lightroom and iMovie are up to 85 percent faster than previous models. Final Cut Pro can now simultaneously edit up to five 4K video streams without dropping a frame.
Thanks to the M1 processor, iPhone apps and games can also be run directly on the iMac. Phone calls and text messages can also come straight to the iMac, and Universal Clipboard lets you copy and paste directly between iPhone and M1 iMac. There is also a phone-like biometric fingerprint sensor on the new keyboard.
The M1 iMac offers up to four USB-C ports (two Thunderbolt), a new magnetically coupled power cord with an Ethernet adapter built into the power brick, which directs network traffic through the power cord itself thanks to Thunderbolt.
The new iMacs will be available in four colors starting at $1,299, and a second model will come in seven colors starting at $1,499. Pre-orders will begin on April 30, and delivery will begin in the second half of May.
List image by Apple