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Sledneck52

macrumors member
Original poster
Feb 27, 2019
69
47
Philly Area
My 21” 2013 iMac with the I7 3.1GHz 16GB Ram, 1 TB fusion drive has lasted me 7 years without issue. Only downside to the machine is the NVIDIA with 1GB. Maybe that’s why it won’t run Big Sur when it’s released. I had placed an order for a new 27” but canceled in light of the new chips. Even tho Apple says they will still support Intel for “years” to come doesn’t mean a whole lot. I currently also have a 1st gen iPad Pro 9.7. It has the A9 CPU. It is four generations old cpu wise. The iPad is almost four years old. This is concerning to me. Is this what Apple will do with desktop machines too. In 4-5 years your machine will be outdated?
Do they want the public not to keep their machines as long anymore?
Most other PC makers age their machines in dog years. The moment you buy it it’s outdated.
Now I am back to considering getting the latest Intel imac because it’s still more versatile (right now) but who really knows for how long.
I am at a crossroad. I have time to wait but the wait is killing me! Lol
Thoughts anyone?
 
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jpn

Cancelled
Feb 9, 2003
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rumours have indicated an aggressive timeline that apple is planning.

from 1st machines this year.
i think within 2 years after these machines initial releases there will no longer be any Intel macs being launched with even updated specs, let alone based on new designs.

apple wants as many of us to buy these new machines as quickly as possible and complete the transition within a very short period of time.

being apple, i am positive that macOS and (at least) apple written software will be updated to run on Intel machines for a good 4 to 5 years (maybe until only 2024 or 2025?) more. iOS or whatever the new software morphs into will allow apple to take total control of box and software and firmware to provide even tighter integration among all of its devices (desktop, laptop, mobile, wearable) to provide better security and performance. this means that apple will be able to put more and more new capabilities into these ARM macs, that won't run on intel machines at all.

some people won't mind this, and keep their intel machines for years.
equally as certain is there will be a robust trade for decades in parts that work on intel macs.

after the announcements at WWDC this year, and thinking through the full implications, unless you love tinkering, buying any intel mac now is the worst decision i can imagine.

after the WWDC splash announcements, no one can say apple didn't inform them what's coming.
they didn't call it a warning. they call it marketing.
 
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Falhófnir

macrumors 603
Aug 19, 2017
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Macs currently get about 5-7 years support on the latest OS, plus another two of security only updates so 7-9 years in total before they're no longer supported. iOS has lagged somewhat behind this standard, though indications are it's now catching up, particularly on the iPad side. The iPad Air 2 is getting 7 years of support (at least up until the end of the iOS 14 cycle next year!), and I can only see the later iPads/Pros matching that. It seems Apple want to offer the same level of support for iOS devices that Macs get, not cut down how long Macs are supported. And particularly with iPad if they want people to start considering it instead of a computer.

I don't see that the Arm transition will affect Mac support timescales, but even if it becomes more like iOS (no legacy security support for the previous OS versions) I would expect at least 7-8 years of full OS support to compensate. Basically if you judge Apple by their actions there's nothing to suggest they are thinking of cutting support, if anything it seems they are being ever more ambitious.
 

DearthnVader

macrumors 68020
Dec 17, 2015
2,189
6,376
Red Springs, NC
My 21” 2013 iMac with the I7 3.1GHz 16GB Ram, 1 TB fusion drive has lasted me 7 years without issue. Only downside to the machine is the NVIDIA with 1GB. Maybe that’s why it won’t run Big Sur when it’s released. I had placed an order for a new 27” but canceled in light of the new chips. Even tho Apple says they will still support Intel for “years” to come doesn’t mean a whole lot. I currently also have a 1st gen iPad Pro 9.7. It has the A9 CPU. It is four generations old cpu wise. The iPad is almost four years old. This is concerning to me. Is this what Apple will do with desktop machines too. In 4-5 years your machine will be outdated?
Do they want the public not to keep their machines as long anymore?
Most other PC makers age their machines in dog years. The moment you buy it it’s outdated.
Now I am back to considering getting the latest Intel imac because it’s still more versatile (right now) but who really knows for how long.
I am at a crossroad. I have time to wait but the wait is killing me! Lol
Thoughts anyone?
A fist gen Apple SoC Mac may not have much more longevity than x86 Macs do, if the past is any indication.

It depends on use case, if you need what I would call a steady state computer, or you are more interested in running the latest and greatest version of the macOS.

The macOS moves pretty fast, but Apple tends to continue to update older versions for a number of years after the initial launch of the OS.

PPC Macs that launched with 10.4 could never move beyond 10.5, but Apple continued to update and support 10.5 for years, you just couldn't run the latest and greatest macOS on PPC. The rub is, many early Intel systems that shipped with 10.4 could not run much pasted 10.7.x.

So it's kind of a tossup, early Apple SoC Macs maybe just as limited as early Intel Macs were as Apple refines their technology.

If you measure your Mac by how long you can run the latest and greatest macOS on it with full support, I would say the second generation Apple SoC Macs would be a better buy. So that leaves you waiting a while, maybe buy a used, or refurb Mac that will suit your needs for the next few years, then pull the trigger on a second gen Apple SoC Mac.
 

ian87w

macrumors G3
Feb 22, 2020
8,704
12,636
Indonesia
My 21” 2013 iMac with the I7 3.1GHz 16GB Ram, 1 TB fusion drive has lasted me 7 years without issue. Only downside to the machine is the NVIDIA with 1GB. Maybe that’s why it won’t run Big Sur when it’s released. I had placed an order for a new 27” but canceled in light of the new chips. Even tho Apple says they will still support Intel for “years” to come doesn’t mean a whole lot. I currently also have a 1st gen iPad Pro 9.7. It has the A9 CPU. It is four generations old cpu wise. The iPad is almost four years old. This is concerning to me. Is this what Apple will do with desktop machines too. In 4-5 years your machine will be outdated?
Do they want the public not to keep their machines as long anymore?
Most other PC makers age their machines in dog years. The moment you buy it it’s outdated.
Now I am back to considering getting the latest Intel imac because it’s still more versatile (right now) but who really knows for how long.
I am at a crossroad. I have time to wait but the wait is killing me! Lol
Thoughts anyone?
Other PC markers' advantage is Windows, which has a lot longer support than macOS, ever. You can use a 10 year old PC and the latest Windows 10 will still install and have the basic drivers for it (and you'll have the latest Windows 10 with the latest security patches). Can't say the same for Apple Macs.

Just like anything tech, it is usually not a good idea to buy the first revision. The first intel Mac uses 32bit Intel core chips, and they got dropped off support quite quickly when Apple moved to 64bit only. Unless your current iMac is dying, I would just wait for the second round of ARM Macs in 2021 or 2022. There will be a lot of bugs and rough patches fixed by then. Or, if you still want to get the first round of ARM Macs, definitely get Apple care to get you covered for 3 years.
 
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Yebubbleman

macrumors 603
May 20, 2010
5,905
2,504
Los Angeles, CA
My 21” 2013 iMac with the I7 3.1GHz 16GB Ram, 1 TB fusion drive has lasted me 7 years without issue. Only downside to the machine is the NVIDIA with 1GB. Maybe that’s why it won’t run Big Sur when it’s released. I had placed an order for a new 27” but canceled in light of the new chips. Even tho Apple says they will still support Intel for “years” to come doesn’t mean a whole lot. I currently also have a 1st gen iPad Pro 9.7. It has the A9 CPU. It is four generations old cpu wise. The iPad is almost four years old. This is concerning to me. Is this what Apple will do with desktop machines too. In 4-5 years your machine will be outdated?
Do they want the public not to keep their machines as long anymore?
Most other PC makers age their machines in dog years. The moment you buy it it’s outdated.
Now I am back to considering getting the latest Intel imac because it’s still more versatile (right now) but who really knows for how long.
I am at a crossroad. I have time to wait but the wait is killing me! Lol
Thoughts anyone?


A few things:

1) Your 9.7" iPad Pro is still supported. It can run the current iPadOS version. It can also run the next one. Is the A9 showing signs of age at this point? Probably. I'd say that once both it and the 5th Generation iPad become the oldest (9.7") iPads that Apple still supports (which is to say, when they finally drop support for the iPad Air 2), it may be time to consider moving on. But that's still pretty decent life for an iPad and better than many previous iPads that have had support cut for it (first and third generation iPads come to mind).

2) I'm curious what about the NVIDIA GPU you don't like other than 1GB of VRAM is small by today's standards (but really isn't bad for a 7 year old Mac). Most of us miss having NVIDIA on a Mac. I know I do.

3) It's looking like new Intel iMacs are coming soon. So, it's good that you waited. If nothing about Windows or keeping on an Intel Mac is important to you, waiting is a good idea at this point. Then again, Apple has been supporting Intel Macs from the 2010-2020 decade much longer than they ever did any Mac released from 2000-2008 (and the Intel switch was smack dab in the middle of that time period). So, yes, you'll likely be supported for AT LEAST one year longer on an Apple Silicon Mac (in terms of future macOS releases and software for macOS) than you would on an Intel Mac. But even on a new Intel Mac you're still likely to be supported for a very long time to come (certainly at least the amount of time you've had your current iMac).

In short, fear of lack of support shouldn't be what convinces you to wait. The fact that you know that something drastically different is coming should be the thing that convinces you to wait (so long as you're cool with what you get not being an Intel Mac and are open to whatever is coming).
 
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MarkC426

macrumors 68040
May 14, 2008
3,619
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UK
Seems like a bit of an anticlimax releasing the 2019 Macpro in December...... ?
 

Sledneck52

macrumors member
Original poster
Feb 27, 2019
69
47
Philly Area
The consensus seems to be Intel will be supported for many years. I believe this to be true but..... I think it will only be for the high dollar Mac Pros. They sell more home and small business iMac, MacBook and Mac mini’s. Apple is a business and being in business it’s goal is to make money. If they keep supporting Intel based machines most wont upgrade to the ARM. I think it’s going to replicate the G5 to Intel timeline.
The reason I started this thread was because the Intel machine is more versatile (for now) and it got me thinking.
I am not a windoze user. I do have boot camp and windoze 10 pro installed but it irritates me to use it. I only did it because I could.
I won’t miss windoze at all.
 

Falhófnir

macrumors 603
Aug 19, 2017
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The consensus seems to be Intel will be supported for many years. I believe this to be true but..... I think it will only be for the high dollar Mac Pros. They sell more home and small business iMac, MacBook and Mac mini’s. Apple is a business and being in business it’s goal is to make money. If they keep supporting Intel based machines most wont upgrade to the ARM. I think it’s going to replicate the G5 to Intel timeline.
The reason I started this thread was because the Intel machine is more versatile (for now) and it got me thinking.
I am not a windoze user. I do have boot camp and windoze 10 pro installed but it irritates me to use it. I only did it because I could.
I won’t miss windoze at all.
I don't see any reason Apple wouldn't support Intel Macs for their usual full OS support cycle, it's not like they don't have the resources to do it this time around so why create bad will where none needs to exist by dropping support for people's still quite new machines? The only thing to worry about will be 3rd party app support towards the end, which might dwindle as the active Intel installed base shrinks. The Arm Macs will sell themselves without any need for Apple to brandish the stick, I'm sure. There will always be new features (carrots) people will lust after, new form factors will come if not right away, and some will actively want to try Apple's new tech out.
 

dgdosen

macrumors 68030
Dec 13, 2003
2,779
1,414
Seattle
Doesn't it depend on what you're using it for?

I've still got a 2017 macbook, and use it alot, for anything other than software development - and even then, if what I'm doing can be done over a connection to a server, I'll still use it. I like the form factor that much. You'll should just understand the ceiling of the machine for the work you want to do.

If I have to open XCode, work on something to be deployed on some server, or compile just about anything -- well, that's almost always above the capabilities of the macbook, and I'm going to be using a desktop (or hosted desktop) for that...

Now, the best of both worlds would be to bring back that macbook form factor with a new keyboard, cpu and screen...
 
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Sledneck52

macrumors member
Original poster
Feb 27, 2019
69
47
Philly Area
If my 2013 had more VRAM it would probably be eligible for the Big Sur update. Maybe that will change as the release gets closer.
I do notice a lag when scrolling through Files in folders.. it will hang and then catch up. It’s not the refresh rate.
I do run two monitors. Catalina has slowed the machine down a bit. Again, I feel it’s the graphics chip..
 
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