It has never happened that, as soon as a new product from Apple came out, you wondered if it was time to change a slightly outdated model for a more modern one, and here it is again! So, the latest iMac model will start selling in Russia in the second half of May, that is, from day to day. In addition to the obvious visual changes, we are promised increased power and many other advantages. But let’s look at the facts ourselves and see if it’s worth switching from the 2019 iMac to the new 2021 iMac.
Price and characteristics of “poppies”
First of all, let’s look at how the entire iMac lineup has changed. Prior to the announcement of 2021, these desktops had two screen options: 21.5 inches or 27 inches. Now the 24-inch monitor will completely replace the smaller version, with the exception of computers for educational institutions: they will be left with the option to purchase 21.5‑inch iMacs. However, it is worth noting that this series has slightly outdated parameters: a 7th generation Core i5 processor, an integrated graphics card and no Retina display.
The 27-inch iMac arrived as recently as 2020. It’s still powered by an Intel processor, and looks exactly like the design the company launched over a decade ago.
However, there is another computer that came out in 2019. With a 21.4 or 27 inch display, but with Retina technology and 4K resolution. Apple is phasing out this iMac, but if you already own one, you might want to know if it’s worth giving up. Now this computer can be found at a price of about 120 thousand rubles, and a 27-inch model — for 140. It works on an 8th generation Intel processor (21-inch at — 3.6 GHz Intel Core i3, and 27-inch — at 3 GHz Core i5 with six cores). The graphics on the models are also different, but both options can be selected with 32 GB of RAM and 1 TB of SSD storage.
The new iMac differs significantly from the 2019 version: it came out in three models, and they all run on the Apple M1 processor. The base one received an 8‑core CPU and a 7‑core GPU, but two advanced ones — 8 cores on each parameter. The Apple M1 is a SoC processor (System-on-a-Chip, single-chip system). This means that the options for customization and modification are severely curtailed. For example, if you want to add something, this something can only be an SSD (and then only up to 2 TB) or RAM (8 GB or 16 GB). While iMac 2019 can replace both the chip and the graphics card.
The 2021 24-inch iMac is exactly the same as its predecessors. One of the main distinguishing features of this series of computers is a completely rethought design and the ability to choose different colors. The last time such a wealth of options was already in 1999, and now the set is much wider. There are lilac, and pale green, and orange, and pink, and blue and yellow. At the same time, those who adhere to a conservative style can still stop at gray. In addition, accessories, down to the power cable, are also available in new colors. There is a keyboard with Touch ID, and a mouse, and a trackpad. You can either choose one shade or combine them.
Until this year, Apple clearly adhered to the policy of “do not touch what is already on sale.” iMac colors were limited to white for early models and silver for later models, and the form factor remained the same, but recognizable. The change in style is associated primarily with the appearance of its own processor. It is thanks to the M1 chip that the “poppy” case has become thinner — only 1.5 cm. At a minimum, this means that it will now be much easier to find a place in the house for such a computer.
Despite the fact that both computers (2019 and 2021) are equipped with a Retina display, there are still differences. The older model supports 4K resolution (4096 x 2304 pixels), 1 billion colors, 500 nits brightness and P3 color space. This year’s iMac has a screen resolution of 4.5K (4480 x 2520) with 218 ppi. There is also support for True Tone, a technology for automatically adjusting brightness and color reproduction for ambient lighting. Definitely, the new “poppy” screen is perfect.
As always, iMacs come preloaded with the upgradable macOS operating system. But there is one fundamental difference, and the Apple M1 processor again becomes its cause. Thanks to its SoC architecture, you can run not only applications for MacOS, but also for iOS or iPadOS from a computer. So games, chats and other applications will always be available to you in a few clicks, with the same data and information that you entered on another device. Unfortunately, the 2019 model does not have such an advantage, so the choice of applications is obviously less.
Which iMac is better to buy
If you’re thinking about getting your first iMac, then of course the 2021 24-inch model is unbeatable. With it, you can actually get all the most progressive that the company is ready to offer. The capabilities of its own processor are one of the most attractive aspects of the novelty. But the design and additional functions also play a role. The only thing that can convince you to choose a new product is the price difference: almost 40 thousand between the 2019 and 2021 models.
The same can stop those who are thinking about updating their device. In fact, Apple offers enough to lure the buyer, but there are not so many fundamental innovations in the iMac that will affect in practice. If you do not need serious computing power, then upgrading the processor will not be essential. On the contrary — are you sure that your computer should be the most powerful and hardy? Then iMac 2021 is definitely for you.
The future of the Apple computer lineup
There is a popular theory among Apple fans that it is better not to buy new revolutionary devices right away. First you need to wait for all the technologies to run in, and then take the second generation, where all the mistakes made earlier will be corrected. This approach seems to be the most optimal so far, especially if you do not experience discomfort using an older computer. The next iMac series may be even more advanced, and even with additional features, and then the spending will definitely be justified.