Apple Announces New iMac With Faster Intel Processors, New Graphics & Next-Gen Wi-Fi

This is a discussion on Apple Announces New iMac With Faster Intel Processors, New Graphics & Next-Gen Wi-Fi within the iMac forums, part of the Mac Forum category; Apple has today announced a new iMac update which sees the latest fourth-generation Intel quad-core Haswell processors, new graphics, next-generation Wi-Fi, and faster PCIe flash ...

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    Apple Announces New iMac With Faster Intel Processors, New Graphics & Next-Gen Wi-Fi



    Apple has today announced a new iMac update which sees the latest fourth-generation Intel quad-core Haswell processors, new graphics, next-generation Wi-Fi, and faster PCIe flash storage options added to the popular all-in-one desktop.

    “iMac continues to be the example that proves how beautiful, fast and fun a desktop computer can be,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing. “Inside its ultra-thin aluminum enclosure, the new iMac has the latest Intel processors, faster graphics, next generation 802.11ac Wi-Fi and faster PCIe flash storage.”

    The entry-level 21.5-inch iMac now features a 2.7-inch quad-core Intel Core i5 processor and new Iris Pro graphics for “unprecedented levels of integrated graphics performance,” Apple said in its press release. While the high-end 21.5- and 27-inch models now feature the same Core i5 processors with up to 3.4GHz clock speeds and NVIDIA GeForce 700 series graphics with twice the video memory and up to 40% faster performance than the previous models.

    The iMac can also be upgraded to include faster Intel Core i7 processors at up to 3.5GHz, and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780M series graphics with up to 4GB of video memory.

    In addition to these improvements, the new iMacs also support next-generation 802.11ac Wi-Fi — just like Apple’s latest MacBook Air lineup. The new technology delivers wireless performance up to three times faster than that of the previous generation.

    The new machines also feature support for PCIe-based flash storage, which makes Fusion Drive and all-flash storage options up to 50% faster than the previous models.

    The entry-level 21.5-inch iMac starts at $1,299 in the U.S., while the high-end 21.5-inch model costs $1,499. The larger 27-inch model starts at $1,799, which rises to $1,999 if you add the faster 3.8GHz Core i5 processor and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 775M series graphics.

    All models are available to order now from the Apple Online Store.





    9-24-13

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    New iMac Teardowns Reveal Good News And Bad News For Upgraders



    Apple silently snuck up on us all yesterday with new 21.5-inch and 27-inch iMacs, but short of upgrading them with Haswell processors, what has really changed? As is their custom, everyone’s favorite gadget dissectors over at iFixIt have torn apart their new iMacs to find out.

    There’s good news and bad news. The good news has to do with the Fusion Drive. The bad news? The CPU.

    Good news first. When Apple released the new ultra-thin iMacs last year, they came with standard spinning hard drives with an option to upgrade to an SSD or Fusion Drive. However, if you bought an iMac with a hard drive, there was no extra port inside the iMac for you to add an SSD and spin your own Fusion Drive. On both the 21.-5 and 27-inch iMac models, this has now changed. “Contrary to last year’s model, users can now put in a second hard drive via the Fusion Drive SSD port, even if they don’t pick the iMac with the Fusion Drive right out of the factory,” writes iFixIt. “That port is now PCIe, which should help get drives/adapters onto the market that will enable a second hard drive installation.”

    So that’s the good news. The bad news, however, is that an iMac CPU is no longer upgradeable. Says iFixIt: “The CPU is now soldered to the logic board, and no longer replaceable by the user. As far as we can tell, this is the first aluminum iMac to have a soldered CPU; it’s a silent, but clear, shift to even poorer iMac upgradeability.
    That’s sad news for Apple’s power user community, who appreciated the ability to upgrade their Macs on their own schedule.”

    Personally, I had absolutely no idea this was even an option (and I now have visions of risking ruin and replacing the CPU on my aging 2009 iMac), but that does seem to be another step by Apple away from repairability and upgradeability.

    You can find iFixIt’s 21.5-inch teardown and 27-inch teardown here.





    9-25-13

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    iMac Intel 27" EMC 2639 Teardown





    In the calm after the iPhone 5s/c storm, Apple thought it could slip a couple new iMacs by us. Time for us to get our pry on and pop this next generation 27" iMac wide open for a quick tour of the highlights.























    9-25-13

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    iMac Intel 21.5" EMC 2638 Teardown

    We are 99% sure that this iMac is 99% the same as its predecessor. What makes the 1%? Power? Money? New connectors?! We know of only one way to find out.

    Come see as we take a peek inside a minor update of an old friend.




















    9-25-13

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    ‘Ultimate’ iMac gets boost from PCIe flash storage, faster CPU



    The new 2013 iMacs come in four standard configurations, two 21.5in models and two with 27in screens. As with most Macs, though, these new iMacs can be configured to order (CTO) at the time of purchase with an assortment of storage, processor, graphics and RAM options. Macworld Lab has an ‘ultimate’ configuration iMac that combines most of these upgrades, promising higher performance for those willing to pay the price.

    Our CTO 27in iMac takes the $2449, high-end configuration and upgrades the processor from a 3.4GHz quad-core Core i5 processor to a 3.5GHz quad-core Core i7 processor, a $250 option. The memory stays at 8GB, though 16GB and 32GB upgrades are available through the Apple Store for $240 and $720.01, respectively. Our ultimate iMac also upgrades the standard 1TB, 7200-rpm hard drive to a 3TB Fusion Drive, a $430 upgrade. Finally, our iMac has the upgraded graphics card as well, opting for an Nvidia GeForce GTX 780M with 4GB of video memory over the standard GTX 775M with 2GB of RAM (an additional $200). With these $880 in upgrades, the retail price of our CTO iMac came to $3329.

    And just what kind of performance improvement can you expect if you spend the extra dollars? Unfortunately, we don’t have the current model to use as a baseline, but we did have the 2012 Ultimate iMac, as well as last year’s top-of-line, standard configuration iMac.




    In our system performance benchmark suite, Speedmark 8, the new CTO iMac was six percent faster, overall, than last year’s custom iMac, a 27in model with a 3.4GHz quad-core Core i7 (Ivy Bridge) processor, 1TB Fusion Drive, 8GB RAM and Nvidia GeForce GT 680MX graphics with 2GB of video RAM. The new custom iMac was 48 percent faster than last year’s top of the line iMac and 57 percent faster than the new entry-level 21.5in iMac.

    Much of the performance differences we see when comparing the new CTO iMac to the old standard configuration models are due to the custom system’s fast Fusion Drive. Fusion Drive marries a speedy 128GB flash storage drive to a roomy hard drive, giving Fusion Drive the high capacity of a hard drive, but the performance of an SSD. Copying 6GB of files and folders from one spot on the drive to another took nearly two and a half minutes on last year’s high-end iMac with 1TB 7200 rpm drive. The new CTO iMac with a 3TB Fusion drive took 35 seconds to complete the task. The flash storage on the new CTO iMac is connected via PCIe, which Apple says can deliver up to 50 percent faster performance. Our file copy test was 14 percent faster on the 3TB Flash Drive in our new custom iMac than on the 1TB Flash Drive in last year’s CTO iMac.

    We ran Blackmagic’s Disk Speed Test on both new and old CTO iMacs and saw that write speeds were similar, 312MB per second on the new iMac versus 306MB per second on the old iMac. The reading score, however, was 43 percent faster on the new system, with the PCIe-connected Fusion Drive reading data at a very impressive 581MB per second.

    The premium GeForce GTX 780M graphics in the new CTO iMac helped the system achieve a 29 percent higher frame rate than last year’s iMac in the Cinebench r11.5 OpenGL test. Interestingly, the new CTO iMac’s frame rates in this test were only 10 percent faster than the Iris Pro integrated graphics found in the entry-level iMac, which outperformed both of last year’s 27in iMacs with their discreet graphics.

    During the course of our testing, Maxon updated their Cinebench benchmark to version r15. The updated tests in the new version take advantage of new features and technologies, and they show the new CTO’s GeForce GTX 780M in a much more favourable light, with frame rates nearly doubling from version r11.5 to r15. The new entry-level iMac with its Iris Pro integrated graphics didn’t fare as well on the version of the benchmark, dropping its frame rate by 26 percent in r15 versus its r11.5 results.

    Also interesting were our Portal 2 test results. In our standard Speedmark Portal 2 test, which we run on everything (including five-year-old MacBook Airs), the new CTO 27in iMac had 11 percent higher frame rates than last year’s custom iMac. The new CTO was also 23 percent higher than last year’s high-end standard configuration iMac and 36 percent higher frame rates than the current low-end 21.5in iMac. Cranking up Portal 2’s quality settings and resolution to 2650 by 1440, we saw frame rates on both the newer and older CTO iMacs drop. The new model’s frame rates dropped further, though, allowing last year’s custom iMac to post about six percent higher frames per second.

    We also ran the Heaven and Valley graphics benchmarks on our iMacs and found that at 1920 by 800 resolution, last year’s CTO iMac was nine percent and six percent faster, respectively, than the new CTO model, but between four and five times as fast as the 2013 21.5in entry-level iMac. At full screen resolution and higher quality settings, last year’s custom iMac again surpassed the new CTO iMac by a frame or two per second.

    In terms of CPU performance, the new Haswell quad-core 3.5GHz i7 was about eight percent faster than the 3.4GHz Ivy Bridge quad-core i7 from last year’s custom iMac, 30 percent faster than last year’s high-end iMac, and 35 percent faster than the new 21.5in iMac in the Cinebench CPU test. Again, Cinebench results showed a higher performance gap than other tests. Handbrake tests, for example, showed the new custom iMac to be just one percent faster than last year’s CTO model, five percent faster than last year’s high end, and 21 percent faster than the new 21.5in low-end iMac. Mathematicamark was half of a percent faster on the new custom iMac than on last year’s similar model and eight percent faster than the new low-end iMac.

    Copy 6GB Folder
    27″ iMac/3.5GHz CTO (Late 2013) 35.0
    27″ iMac/3.4GHz CTO (Late 2012) 40.6
    27″ iMac/3.2GHz (Late 2012) 145.7
    21″ iMac/2.7GHz (Late 2013) 137.3
    Results are in seconds. Smaller results are better. Reference models in italics.

    Compress 6GB Folder
    27″ iMac/3.5GHz CTO (Late 2013) 254.3
    27″ iMac/3.4GHz CTO (Late 2012) 262.4
    27″ iMac/3.2GHz (Late 2012) 293.8
    21″ iMac/2.7GHz (Late 2013) 313.7
    Results are in seconds. Smaller results are better. Reference models in italics.

    Decompress 6GB Folder
    27″ iMac/3.5GHz CTO (Late 2013) 39.0
    27″ iMac/3.4GHz CTO (Late 2012) 40.6
    27″ iMac/3.2GHz (Late 2012) 129.2
    21″ iMac/2.7GHz (Late 2013) 126.0
    Results are in seconds. Smaller results are better. Reference models in italics.

    Import iMovie Archive
    27″ iMac/3.5GHz CTO (Late 2013) 40.9
    27″ iMac/3.4GHz CTO (Late 2012) 41.6
    27″ iMac/3.2GHz (Late 2012) 59.2
    21″ iMac/2.7GHz (Late 2013) 65.9
    Results are in seconds. Smaller results are better. Reference models in italics.

    iMovie Share to iTunes
    27″ iMac/3.5GHz CTO (Late 2013) 37.2
    27″ iMac/3.4GHz CTO (Late 2012) 39.3
    27″ iMac/3.2GHz (Late 2012) 47.0
    21″ iMac/2.7GHz (Late 2013) 67.6
    Results are in seconds. Smaller results are better. Reference models in italics.

    HandBrake Encode
    27″ iMac/3.5GHz CTO (Late 2013) 48.7
    27″ iMac/3.4GHz CTO (Late 2012) 49.0
    27″ iMac/3.2GHz (Late 2012) 51.0
    21″ iMac/2.7GHz (Late 2013) 61.3
    Results are in seconds. Smaller results are better. Reference models in italics.

    iPhoto Import
    27″ iMac/3.5GHz CTO (Late 2013) 36.3
    27″ iMac/3.4GHz CTO (Late 2012) 39.2
    27″ iMac/3.2GHz (Late 2012) 82.6
    21″ iMac/2.7GHz (Late 2013) 94.0
    Results are in seconds. Smaller results are better. Reference models in italics.

    Aperture Import
    27″ iMac/3.5GHz CTO (Late 2013) 46.3
    27″ iMac/3.4GHz CTO (Late 2012) 45.2
    27″ iMac/3.2GHz (Late 2012) 64.4
    21″ iMac/2.7GHz (Late 2013) 69.7
    Results are in seconds. Smaller results are better. Reference models in italics.

    Photoshop CS5 Action Script
    27″ iMac/3.5GHz CTO (Late 2013) 84.3
    27″ iMac/3.4GHz CTO (Late 2012) 85.0
    27″ iMac/3.2GHz (Late 2012) 92.7
    21″ iMac/2.7GHz (Late 2013) 93.3
    Results are in seconds. Smaller results are better. Reference models in italics.

    iTunes AAC to MP3 Encode
    27″ iMac/3.5GHz CTO (Late 2013) 80.0
    27″ iMac/3.4GHz CTO (Late 2012) 84.7
    27″ iMac/3.2GHz (Late 2012) 92.7
    21″ iMac/2.7GHz (Late 2013) 93.3
    Results are in seconds. Smaller results are better. Reference models in italics.

    Cinebench CPU
    27″ iMac/3.5GHz CTO (Late 2013) 54.0
    27″ iMac/3.4GHz CTO (Late 2012) 59.0
    27″ iMac/3.2GHz (Late 2012) 77.3
    21″ iMac/2.7GHz (Late 2013) 83.0
    Results are in seconds. Smaller results/shorter bars are better. Reference models in italics.

    VMware-PCMark
    27″ iMac/3.5GHz CTO (Late 2013) 4493.0
    27″ iMac/3.4GHz CTO (Late 2012) 4265.0
    27″ iMac/3.2GHz (Late 2012) 3979.0
    21″ iMac/2.7GHz (Late 2013) 4009.0
    Results are scores. Larger results are better. Reference models in italics.

    MathematicaMark 8
    27″ iMac/3.5GHz CTO (Late 2013) 2.15
    27″ iMac/3.4GHz CTO (Late 2012) 2.14
    27″ iMac/3.2GHz (Late 2012) 2.02
    21″ iMac/2.7GHz (Late 2013) 1.99
    Results are scores. Larger results are better. Reference models in italics.

    Cinebench OpenGL
    27″ iMac/3.5GHz CTO (Late 2013) 57.5
    27″ iMac/3.4GHz CTO (Late 2012) 44.7
    27″ iMac/3.2GHz (Late 2012) 39.9
    21″ iMac/2.7GHz (Late 2013) 52.0
    Results are frames per second. Larger results are better. Reference models in italics.

    Portal 2
    27″ iMac/3.5GHz CTO (Late 2013) 165.6
    27″ iMac/3.4GHz CTO (Late 2012) 148.6
    27″ iMac/3.2GHz (Late 2012) 134.5
    21″ iMac/2.7GHz (Late 2013) 121.5
    Results are frames per second. Larger results are better. Reference models in italics.

    Portal 2 (1920 by 1080)
    27″ iMac/3.5GHz CTO (Late 2013) 140.4
    27″ iMac/3.4GHz CTO (Late 2012) 131.9
    21″ iMac/2.7GHz (Late 2013) 33.4
    Results are frames per second. Larger results are better. Reference models in italics.

    Heaven
    27″ iMac/3.5GHz CTO (Late 2013) 29.1
    27″ iMac/3.4GHz CTO (Late 2012) 31.6
    21″ iMac/2.7GHz (Late 2013) 7.3
    Results are frames per second. Larger results are better. Reference models in italics.

    Valley
    27″ iMac/3.5GHz CTO (Late 2013) 28.9
    27″ iMac/3.4GHz CTO (Late 2012) 30.5
    21″ iMac/2.7GHz (Late 2013) 5.3
    Results are frames per second. Larger results are better. Reference models in italics.

    Heaven (Fullscreen)
    27″ iMac/3.5GHz CTO (Late 2013) 16.1
    27″ iMac/3.4GHz CTO (Late 2012) 17.9
    Results are frames per second. Larger results are better. Reference models in italics.

    Valley (Fullscreen)
    27″ iMac/3.5GHz CTO (Late 2013) 17.0
    27″ iMac/3.4GHz CTO (Late 2012) 18.2
    Results are frames per second. Larger results are better. Reference models in italics.





    10-9-13

    www.macworld.com

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