iMac 2018 probably around the corner, question regarding memory-upgrade

Discussion in 'iMac' started by hydr, Sep 28, 2018.

  1. hydr macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2009
    #1
    We can only assume the new iMac 2018 version is just around the corner, and will probably be announced if Apple hold an 2018 iPad/Mac event.

    I normally upgrade each year, and sell the older version right before the event. But now I´m having second thoughts because after iMac Pro, I´m not entirely sure Apple will allow user-upgradable memory.

    Who thinks Apple will still allow user-upgradable memory, and who think it might be hard soldered to the new iMac? Have I missed any rumours on this? What do you guys think?
     
  2. SecuritySteve macrumors 6502a

    SecuritySteve

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    #2
    I do not believe the iMac Pro RAM is soldered in. It simply has no access door like the regular 27" iMac.
     
  3. hydr thread starter macrumors regular

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    Feb 25, 2009
    #3
    Good point. But are we heading to a world where we can´t add memory to our iMacs you think?
     
  4. nambuccaheadsau macrumors 68000

    nambuccaheadsau

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    #4
    In one word yes we are. All computer manufacturers want to keep owners out of the insides and as a result there will be less and less user upgrade option s.

    And who said a new 2018 model? Next year for mine.
     
  5. SecuritySteve macrumors 6502a

    SecuritySteve

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    #5
    No. Apple permits the addition of memory if you take it in to an Apple store. They will do it for you if you do not feel comfortable doing it. Unless we are talking about a laptop, I really do not foresee a time where memory is not user upgradable.

    On a side note, memory capacity is cheap to get these days. It is fairly easy and cheap to get 32 GB of DDR3 and DDR4 memory.

    DDR3 (255$)
    https://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod...78&cm_re=32GB_DDR3-_-0RN-004P-005K0-_-Product

    DDR4 (253$)
    https://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod...231967&cm_re=32GB_DDR4-_-20-231-967-_-Product

    If you buy Macs the year they come out, then you will be paying a premium on memory, which is probably why this matters to you. I am not sure why Apple charges so much for their RAM sticks, but they do. Most applications are designed with 32GB being excessive memory - the exception being VM farms at datacenter.

    It baffles me that Apple does not make their AIO iMacs more easily disassemble-able to reach the internal components. I guess that's what we get for the artsy folks demanding that their iMacs look a certain way. But as long as the iMac remains a desktop, I doubt we will ever reach a soldered RAM state. Probably everything else in the machine will be, but RAM I would say no.
     
  6. Icaras macrumors 603

    Icaras

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    #6
    IF the iMac gets redesigned, then I think it’s a no brainer that the memory bay door will go. The iMac 27-inch is the last Mac, aside from the Mac Pro, to have this and to think it will stay is just false hope.
     
  7. MathewM macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2018
    #7
    I wouldn't be so sure about a new iMac this year. Apple won't sabotage Pro sales by adding a six-core model iMac in the mix. If anything it will be a minor speed bump with the possibility of SSD across the board (256gb in the entry model and up). I don't see them stripping the memory hatch after just one revision.
     
  8. Mol1n macrumors member

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    Jul 12, 2018
    #8
    So nothing other than the Macbook Pros we got in July?
     
  9. RobbieTT macrumors 6502

    RobbieTT

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    #9
    Holding back the iMac to preserve iMP sales seems unlikely. The iMP is relatively low-rate seller, especially for home users and its performance components extend well-beyond the CPU.

    If there was a concern regarding an insufficient performance gap between a 6-core iMac and the Xeon machines they could drop the 8-core and start the iMP with the 10-core Xeon. Arguably the 10-core is the sweet spot for the iMP anyway but as the CPUs are not soldered on completely dropping the 8-core would not achieve much.
     
  10. theluggage macrumors 68040

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    Jul 29, 2011
    #10
    Yes. Maybe not tomorrow, but if the next major re-design of the iMac lets you buy an 8GB model and easily fit an extra 16GB for less than Apple charges for the 16GB total option then... who are you and what have you done with the real Tim Cook?

    What, you can turn up at the local Apple store with your iMac Pro and 32GB of cheap third-party ECC RAM and while-u-wait they'll cut through the screen adhesive, remove the screen, unplug all the cables, remove the main board, fit the RAM (that you didn't buy from them) then re-assemble it all and fit new screen adhesive for you, and you'll pop a few bucks in the tip jar on the way out? Colour me skeptical...

    Yes, I believe that you can have your iMac Pro RAM upgraded at an Apple-approved service centre - if you pay generously for the service (including Apple's price for the RAM). That simply doesn't compare with the current 27" iMac where its a two-minute, tool-free, no-experience needed, non-warranty-voiding job (which, yes, I can believe that a good Apple Store might help with).

    The rumours about the new low-cost MacBook/Air replacement seem rather less nebulous than the iMac ones - the latter just seem to be speculation based on the availability of suitable CPUs. It was slightly odd that all the MBPs except the non-TB ones got updated in July. Oh, and the new Mac Mini is almost certainly coming :->

    The top-specced 5k iMacs with 4.2GHz i7 and 1TB SSD that cost $3000-$4000* probably aren't huge sellers either - and customers considering those certainly include potential iMac Pro buyers. A 6-core processor on the iMac - and maybe a quiet i5 hex-core option that outperforms the current i7 - plus GPU updates, would encourage those people to stick with the iMac. (I'm guessing that the iMac Pro won't be on an annual update cycle, and that a price cut would be proceeded by the appearance of grit-spreading trucks in Hades - so any improvement in the regular iMac would close the gap).

    If they're going to re-design the iMac to appease the thin'n'light brigade, then I think it would actually make sense for it to max out at hex-core i5 if that was easier to keep cool.

    (* yes, you can push the regular iMac price over $5000, but then you'd have to add the 2TB SSD, 64GB options to the iMac Pro price, too).
     
  11. tn-xyz macrumors regular

    tn-xyz

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    Sep 13, 2017
    #11
    it's not even hard soldered to the imac pro, just incredibly difficult to replace it because of the disassembly, but you could still upgrade it yourself (and in the process violating the guarantee).

    it surely will be the trend for the upcoming imac(s). no doubt about it.
     
  12. Fishrrman macrumors P6

    Fishrrman

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    Feb 20, 2009
    #12
    OP wrote:
    "We can only assume the new iMac 2018 version is just around the corner, and will probably be announced if Apple hold an 2018 iPad/Mac event."

    No, we can't assume that.

    I'm not expecting to see new iMacs until perhaps the second quarter of 2019...
     
  13. MathewM macrumors newbie

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    Aug 19, 2018
    #13
    Well there are three products in the current Mac lineup that have serious rumors behind them:

    Macbook Air-- This is a popular laptop because of its price / performance ratio. There are rumors that it will get an update this year. Apple would be smart to keep the current design but give it a retina display with minimal price increase.

    Mac Pro-- This is a given within the next few months. I think Apple will present the new version before the end of the year with availability in early 2019.

    Mac mini-- This is the wild card. They either need to kill it or seriously upgrade it. Rumors are intriguing with Apple re-inventing the mini into a modular, more pro-like machine. However a powerful mini might hurt sales of a re-designed Mac Pro.

    Like I said, the only thing I could see Apple doing with the iMac this October is possibly including SSD across the board. That would entice those on the fence about the expensive BTO options for SSD to buy a new iMac.
     
  14. mreg376, Sep 29, 2018
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2018

    mreg376 macrumors 65816

    mreg376

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    Brooklyn, NY
    #14
    Well, I think most people define "user upgradeable" as an upgrade path specifically designed to be easily and inexpensively accomplished at home (or in the office) by the purchaser. I don't think that prying apart a sealed machine with specialized tools risking damage or having to bring it to an Apple store for considerable additional cost are most people's definitions of "user upgradeable," even though it may still be physically "upgradable."

    Since the current 27" iMac is the ONLY current device that Apple sells whose memory is in fact user upgradeable, and since it is soon due for a refresh/redesign, you have to VERY optimistic to assume that a redesigned 27" iMac won't be joining the rest of the entire Apple product line in omitting easy RAM bay access.
     
  15. theluggage macrumors 68040

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    Jul 29, 2011
    #15
    That seems the most plausible - the Air probably a strong seller but is very out-of-date (although, personally, I'd still consider it if I needed an ultra-portable Mac) and the non-TB MBPs (which are effectively 'retina MacBook Airs' with duff keyboards mispositioned as 'Pro') were passed over by the last update.

    Not impossible, but certainly not "a given" - Apple have said its a "2019" product - delivering a handful of pre-orders by Christmas 2019 would fulfil that. If there's anything novel about it they'll probably want to pre-announce it at the next WWDC so they can talk openly to developers before it hits the street. I'd guess a preview at WWDC 2019 for availability in Nov 2019 (which then slips to early 2020 for most) - just like the Mac Pro Cylinder, the iMac Pro and the Homepod.

    There seem to be two roles for the Mac Mini: one original role was as an affordable, entry-level mac, that you could use with your existing peripherals, that avoided "sticker shock" and got people into the Apple fold. I think that role is now taken by the Air, its possible successor and maybe the iPad, too. The mass market is now dominated by laptops and mobiles, so many don't have existing peripherals and today's Apple doesn't seem to care about sticker shock.

    The other role is as an enthusiasts machine for the sort of people that do have their own peripherals and want iMac or better power without being forced to buy Apple's display. A fairly powerful i7 or i9 Mini with decent discrete graphics would please a lot of people here, but whether its a big seller I don't know... it could also cannibalise sales of iMacs and any new Xeon-level Mac Pro.

    Personally, I suspect that these rumors are likely to be garbled leaks about the Mac Pro.

    I don't think they'll drop the HD/Fusion options until they do a major re-design. The idea that a 256GB SSD is "better" than a 1TB spinner is hard to sell from the shelves of BestBuy without a new thin'n'crispy shell to sweeten the pill - and, frankly, its probably OK if you're ordering something that looks classy on a reception desk and is just going to be doing calendar and email from 9 to 5.

    If you want idle speculation, maybe they'll split the iMac range between thin'n'crispy 21" models and 5k/27" models built on the iMac Pro chassis?
     
  16. Mol1n macrumors member

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    Jul 12, 2018
    #16

    Nuts. From the MacMini thread they made it sound like the iMac would be more likely to see a refresh since it has a higher profit margin for Apple.

    I don't want to connect laptops to desktop displays and hate to buy something that I could have gotten last year.
     
  17. SkiHound2 macrumors regular

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    Jul 15, 2018
    #18
    I agree that if the iMac gets redesigned easy user upgradeable ram is gone. No idea if new iMacs are coming in October but I don't think upgrading to 8th generation cpus threatens iMac Pro sales much. I don't know what the lowest end IMP is going for right now but I'm not in the market for a $5k computer. An iMac with i9, 32gb of ram, and a 1 TB SSD might threaten an IMP but I'm not sure the cost would be that much cheaper than an iMac Pro. I'm kind of waiting to see what new iMacs will bring but I'm actually contemplating a move to Windows. I bought one of the late 2012 minis with the 2.6mhz i7 and filled it out to 16gb of ram. At that time the Fusion drive had a 128GB flash drive. At that time I also bought a very nice 27" screen. No, not as nice as the 27" 5k screen, but it's a 2560 x 1440 display. My idea was that I'd just upgrade the mini every few years. Well, the 2014 mini was essentially a downgrade and we know how many they've released since. I sense that Apple these days doesn't have that much interest in the iMac. There was a time when "Apple stuff just worked" and some of the variants of Windows were pretty awful. But Windows 10 seems pretty darn stable. We'll see.
     
  18. theluggage macrumors 68040

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    Jul 29, 2011
    #19
    I don't think anybody here is ruling out new iMacs in October - just riffing on speculation and rumours and calling out a few over-eager posters who are acting as if its a certainty.

    ...if its a case of revenue (I don't think you meant profit margins) than I'd have thought the "affordable MacBook" would be in front of any desktop offerings.

    Also, Intel seem to be having a few production problems at the moment, so even Apple's plans may be a bit fluid right now.
     
  19. Mol1n macrumors member

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    Jul 12, 2018
    #20
    I was hoping for at least something like what the Macbook Air got last year. Something like the SSD upgrade would be good enough.

    I meant the difference between what they sell for and what it costs to make. The mini and air were supposedly abandoned because this figure was too low.

    I thought Apple was first priority at Intel.
     
  20. MathewM macrumors newbie

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    Aug 19, 2018
    #21
    Right. Windows 10 is overall a very good OS. I'd be content with it except I use FCP X and have the license paid for. If I were all Adobe it would be a different story.
    --- Post Merged, Sep 29, 2018 ---
    My biggest gripe with Apple is that they abandoned their Pro line. Macbook Pros are over priced prosumer laptops with their lack of ports, non-upgradeable internals and crummy keyboards. However, the 2013 Mac Pro was so ill conceived that it will go down as Apple's biggest failure of the 21st century. The 2017 iMac/Pro line was a definite step in the right direction but it's highly questionable how much Apple cares about their pro user base. They have acknowledged their failings to a degree but also continue making the same decisions.
     
  21. mreg376 macrumors 65816

    mreg376

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    #22
    Whether Apple has abandoned their Pro line will be answered for all (if and) when the new Mac Pro is released.
     
  22. bbnck, Sep 30, 2018
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2018

    bbnck macrumors 6502a

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    Mar 19, 2009
    #23
    So, we can't assume a new iMac is coming out this year but you can assume to expect new iMacs next year?

    I can understand why people are hesitant whether or not to buy an iMac right now, not least of which the risk an updated iMac may no longer have the RAM access door. It's entirely possible, but then it's also reasonable to say it's possible an updated 27-inch iMac will have 16 GB RAM as standard. How likely is it most people will need more than that over the lifespan of their machine? (I did say most – I'm super aware some developers, designers and content creators do need more).

    As others have pointed out, the DIMM modules in the iMac Pro are socketed just like the regular iMac and in the case of the iMac Pro, Apple clearly had to remove the RAM access door for engineering reasons. Take a look at the placement of the DIMM modules in the iMac Pro (middle-left):

    88df9261d49386a90e28a4bbe5b0f154.jpg

    Could they have added a RAM access door? Sure, but then how do they do that? Add two RAM access doors for each set of DIMMs? Add one large access door which also exposes some of the piping? It would be nice if people thought about the challenges Apple engineers would have had to carefully consider when designing this system.
     
  23. mreg376 macrumors 65816

    mreg376

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    #24
    Yes, it would have taken a little more engineering to come up with the profound solution of two small RAM access doors for their $5,000-$14,000 iMac Pro, but they certainly could have done it.
     
  24. bbnck macrumors 6502a

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    #25
    If they didn't think that would look adeptly stupid they would do that.
     

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