The 21-inch iMac was last updated in October 2015 and, to be frank, that update was a little disappointing because, despite the fact that this was the first generation of 21-inch iMac to offer a 4K Retina display, the processor in that model was a Broadwell CPU, rather than the Skylake CPU offered by the 27-inch iMac of the same generation.
The good news is that this time round both the 21-inch iMac and the 27-inch iMac have received a processor boost to the newer Intel Kaby Lake range. So no more lagging behind for the 21-inch model.
The other big change this time round is that where in 2015 there was only one 21-inch iMac with a 4K Retina display. This time round there are two models offering 4K displays. These two 4K iMacs also offer discreet graphics processors, rather than the integrated Intel graphics that had been offered on older generations.
As a result, these 4K iMacs, with their quad-core Kaby Lake processors, Radeon Pro graphics cards, and the option to configure RAM to 32GB, are looking more powerful than ever.
In this review we are looking specificically at the following 21.5-inch iMacs which we have been able to test:
We’ll take a more in-depth look at all the aspects of the new models below, starting with build and design
While the design of the iMac hasn't actually changed since 2012, there are some visible differences, at least for the 3.4GHz Retina model. As we will discuss later in this review, the 4K Retina display has been overhauled, and as a result it is better than ever.
If you are new to the iMac though, you are in for a treat. Apple’s iMac is a beautiful example of Apple’s excellence in design and also its brilliance when it comes to engineering. The side of the iMac is just 5mm thick. Sure it bulges as you get to the middle, but not significantly (and let’s face it we need that space for all the lovely components on the inside).
It will take up very little space on your desk: the foot that forms the base of the arm that the iMac is hinged on measures just 160 x 175mm, which is less than a Mac mini. The 21.5-inch model is incredibly light too, not that you will be carrying it around.
On to the display. When it updated the iMac in 2015, Apple added a 4K Retina display to the 21-inch range. This time round there are two 4K Retina iMacs: a 3GHz quad-core model and a 3.4GHz quad-core model.
At launch in 2015 the 3.1GHz 4K 2015 model with a Retina display cost £1,199. 2017’s entry-level 4K Retina, with its 3GHz processor, costs slightly more at £1,249. However, we should note that the prices of the previous generation iMac increased in October 2016, so that model was eventually priced at £1,449. So in some ways Apple could sell this as a price drop (and will probably try to).
As for the 4K display Apple’s made some improvements there. All the new iMacs with Retina displays (including the 27-inch models reviewed here) feature new Retina displays with 500nits and 10-bit dithering, which probably sounds like gobbledegook to anyone who doesn’t speak ‘monitor’ but basically means that they are 43 per cent brighter and capable of reproducing even more colours - one billion colours, according to the company.
Apple says that iMac users will be able to enjoy an “even more vivid and true-to-life viewing experience” from these new screens.
The resolution is the same as before, at 4,096x2,304 pixels for the 21-inch Retina iMacs. This is a P3 display, as per the 2015 models. A P3 display is capable of producing colours outside the sRGB colour gamut.
The non-Retina 2.3GHz model offers a 1920x1080 sRGB display. It is possible that if you didn’t see the Retina display model you would be more than satisfied with the standard display on the entry-levelhave seen both models, side-by-side, and we have to say, the Retina screen is not only brighter, clearer, and with better contrast, we could also see more colours, which is to be expected, but impressive, non the less. With just £200 between the non-Retina and the entry-level Retina, and with the other benefits the Retina model brings (faster processor, better graphics) we think it’s worth considering the pricier 3GHz Retina model.
It’s interesting to note that the £1,249 Retina display 3GHz iMac has the same price attached to it as the 12-inch MacBook, which offers a 1.2GHz processor, and the 2.3GHz 13-inch MacBook Pro. You won’t get a Retina display for less than £1,249 and the iMac certainly looks like it offers the best value for money.
All the new 21-inch and 27-inch iMacs feature new Intel Kaby Lake processors. The 21in iMac models get Kaby Lake processors running at up to 3.6GHz (which is a build-to-order option). The processors are as follows:
• 2.3GHz i5 dual-core
• 3.0GHz i5 quad-core
• 3.4GHz i5 quad-core
• 3.6GHz i7 quad-core (BTO)
• 3.4GHz i5 quad-core
• 3.5GHz i5 quad-core
• 3.8GHz i5 quad-core
• 4.2GHz i7 quad-core (BTO)
You can choose a 3.4GHz iMac in either 4K or 5K resolution, for example. One will cost you £1,449 and the other costs £1,749 (that bigger screen costing an extra £300).
Compared to the last generation's models, the new Kaby Lake processors make a big difference. In 2015 the 21-inch iMac was hampered by older Broadwell processors, while that year’s 27-inch models had the Skylake processor. Since the 21-inch model are jumping two processor generations we expected to see some real gains compared to the older models, and we did.
It’s not just the Retina display you get if you ignore the entry-level iMac and pay £200. You also get a dedicated graphics card, the Radeon Pro 555 with 2GB video memory, rather than the Intel Iris Plus Graphics 640. Back in 2015 all the 21-inch iMacs, even the top of the range, 4K iMac, featured Intel Iris Pro Graphics 6200. Now all but the entry level iMac are getting discrete Radeon Pro graphics cards.
Intel’s graphics (which are integrated on to the CPU) use the computer’s RAM, while dedicated (or discreet graphics cards have their own memory.
|Model||Apple iMac MMQA2 - 21.5-inch|
|Sistem Operasi||macOS Sierra|
|Kecepatan CPU||2.3GHz dualcore Intel Core i5 (Turbo Boost up to 3.6GHz)|
|Penyimpanan||Fusion Drive 1 TB|
|Ram||8GB 2133MHz DDR4|
|Kamera||Kamera FaceTime HD|
|VGA||Intel Graphics Card|
|Layar||LED-backlit display with IPS technology 1920‑by‑1080 resolution with support for millions of colors|
|USB Port||4 port USB 3 (kompatibel dengan USB 2)|
|Video Card||Intel Iris Plus Graphics 640|
|Koneksi Nirkabel||802.11ac Wi-Fi wireless networking IEEE 802.11a/b/g/n compatible, Bluetooth 4.0 wireless technology|