Apple's industry-leading iMac desktop received a major update on Tuesday, with newest all-in-one design featuring a form-factor with edges that are just 5 millimeters thin and a new high-res display laminated to the computer's glass cover.
The front display has edge-to-edge glass and is 45 percent thinner than the predecessor. The new iMac also lacks an optical drive and has re-engineered internal components.
"There's an entire computer in here," Apple marketing chief Phil Schiller joked. "It's hard to believe there's even just a display in here."
The new iMac is available in 21.5-inch and 27-inch models, both of which feature the full lamination design that makes pixels appear as though they are directly on the glass.
"With a stunning design, brilliant display and faster performance, weâve made the worldâs leading all-in-one desktop computer better in every way," Schiller said. "The all-new iMac is unbelievably thin, yet packs an incredible amount of performance and technology into our most innovative desktop."
Each display is individually calibrated on the assembly line with a spectroradiometer. The system also features a FaceTime HD camera, dual microphones, and a stereo sound system.
The new iMac packs high-performance technology into an aluminum and glass enclosure with up to 40 percent less volume than its predecessor and an edge that measures 5 millimeters thin. It also features a completely reengineered display that reduces reflection by 75 percent while maintaining brilliant color and contrast. In the new design, the cover glass is fully laminated to the LCD and an anti-reflective coating is applied using a high-precision plasma deposition process.
Powering the display is Nvidia's Kepler graphics, which offer up to 60 percent faster performance than previous models. As for memory, the iMac comes with 8GB of RAM standard with the ability to configure the machine with up to 32GB. Storage is taken care of by a standard 1TB HDD, which can be upgraded to to 1TB Fusion Drive in the high-end 21.5-inch model, or a 3TB HDD, 1TB or 3TB Fusion Drive, or 768GB SSD in the 27-inch version.
The Fusion Drive is a new storage option that combines speedy flash memory with the greater storage capacity offered by traditional hard drives. It joins 128 gigabytes of flash with a 1- or 3-terabyte hard drive for a single storage volume that intelligently manages files.
The iMac also has two Thunderbolt and four USB 3.0 ports, allowing for greater expandability.
The new design sheds up to 8 pounds over the previous generation. Even though it's smaller, Schiller called the internals a "serious computer," featuring Intel quad-core Ivy Bridge processors, up to 32 gigabytes of RAM, and Nvidia Kepler dedicated graphics.
Pricing & availability
The 21.5-inch iMac is available with a 2.7 GHz quad-core Intel Core i5 with Turbo Boost speeds up to 3.2 GHz and NVIDIA GeForce GT 640M for a suggested retail price of $1,299 (US); and with a 2.9 GHz quad-core Intel Core i5 with Turbo Boost speeds up to 3.6 GHz and NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M for a suggested retail price of $1,499 (US). The 21.5-inch iMac will be available in November through the Apple Online Store (www.apple.com), Appleâs retail stores and Apple Authorized Resellers.
The 27-inch iMac is available with a 2.9 GHz quad-core Intel Core i5 with Turbo Boost speeds up to 3.6 GHz and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660M for a suggested retail price of $1,799 (US); and with a 3.2 GHz quad-core Intel Core i5 with Turbo Boost speeds up to 3.6 GHz and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 675MX for a suggested retail price of $1,999 (US). The 27-inch iMac will be available in December through the Apple Online Store, Appleâs retail stores and Apple Authorized Resellers.