iMac Redesign for 2018?

Solo2392

macrumors newbie
Original poster
May 2, 2013
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I know Apple just released updated iMacs after no updates in 2016, but I was disappointed in the lack of a new design.

With the iMac Pro not being released until December of 2017, and looking the same as the current iMacs just in Space Gray, what's the likelihood of an iMac Redesign in 2018?

Apple already stated new Mac Pros will be announced in 2018, so I doubt iMacs will get anytime for announcements at WWDC 2018, and I feel announcing an updated design only 6 months after the iMac Pros begin shipping isn't the best decision

I want a new iMac design with thinner bezels and a touchbar keyboard, but I don't know if Apple will skip 2018 like they did for 2016, or will everyone have to wait until 2019 for the redesign
 
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0990848

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Supposedly there was a 'confirmed' Foxconn insider on Reddit that said iMacs are to get redesigned for 2018.
 

jmpage2

macrumors 68040
Sep 14, 2007
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The Foxconn leak says a new iMac case design is coming next year so we shall see...
Definitely overdue as we are now essentially 11+ years on the current design and definitely 8 years into the current "aluminum unibody" design.

Now, the most likely thing that Apple is going to do is reduce the size of the chassis and remove some of the iMac chin, which would be in keeping with the design language of this year's iPad and iPhone redesigns.

What would be more exciting, and worth putting off a purchase for, would be if they completely changed the design of the iMac to something with a curved display, gesture control, etc.

 

xgman

macrumors 603
Aug 6, 2007
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Imagine paying $5000-$10,000 for the pro imac in December or January and have it's case/monitor totally redesigned less than a year later. Ouch.. It will be interesting to see how they handle that since it's inner workings are already going to be a new design.
 

jmpage2

macrumors 68040
Sep 14, 2007
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386
Imagine paying $5000-$10,000 for the pro imac in December or January and have it's case/monitor totally redesigned less than a year later. Ouch.. It will be interesting to see how they handle that since it's inner workings are already going to be a new design.
More than likely the Pro would lag getting the new display/chassis by a year or two to reduce the bitching from those who just bought it.

I wish I knew what the odds are of a real redesign as my 2012 i7 imac does need replacement at some point.
 
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Andres Cantu

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May 31, 2015
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Imagine paying $5000-$10,000 for the pro imac in December or January and have it's case/monitor totally redesigned less than a year later. Ouch.. It will be interesting to see how they handle that since it's inner workings are already going to be a new design.
Yes it would suck, but similar things have happened before (iPad 1 to iPad 2).
 
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Mac32

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Nov 20, 2010
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I hope Apple brings the improved fans and airflow from the iMac Pro to the regular iMac line, for the next iMac update. This way we could finally get the Nvidia 1080M GPU (and similar future versions) into the iMac. Well, one can hope...
 

fathergll

macrumors 65816
Sep 3, 2014
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Imagine paying $5000-$10,000 for the pro imac in December or January and have it's case/monitor totally redesigned less than a year later. Ouch.. It will be interesting to see how they handle that since it's inner workings are already going to be a new design.

There is almost zero chance of that happening. The iMac Pro will stay put for a while, Most people probably won't even start getting them close to Jan 2018. There isn't a chance that they will be updated in 2018. Besides the thermal challenges on a redesign would probably prevent it.
 

CWallace

macrumors 604
Aug 17, 2007
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I hope Apple brings the improved fans and airflow from the iMac Pro to the regular iMac line, for the next iMac update. This way we could finally get the Nvidia 1080M GPU (and similar future versions) into the iMac. Well, one can hope...
If they do, you'll probably lose the ability to easily upgrade RAM since where the RAM and access port are on the current iMac is now dedicated to cooling on the iMac Pro. So we'll need to remove both the LCD and the logic board to get to it like on the iMac Pro.
 
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Dave245

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Sep 15, 2013
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New redesigns are suppose to be coming next year (2018) but that's only a rumour based on the reddit guy. A new design would be nice and i would love to see the touch bar on the iMac, however Apple don't have to wait for a redesign for the Touch Bar to be added, it would be on the keyboard and not the iMac itself.
 

cynics

macrumors G4
Jan 8, 2012
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I wouldn't be surprised if the iMac takes on some of the design cues from the iMac Pro. Different colors, better internal design for better cooling, etc.

As far as the overall design appearance. I don't know. To me personally the current iMac looks so much better than other AIO's its not even comparable. The only thing that is remotely close (again IMO) is the Asus AIO but that looks like a iMac rip off.

I think Apple did a great job making a design that still looks modern despite its age.

A slightly different design that looks nice is the Surface Studio. However its design also has limitation to performance, like speakers and proximity of the fan (noise source) to the user. Plus Apple has already done that.
 

Dave245

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Sep 15, 2013
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I wouldn't be surprised if the iMac takes on some of the design cues from the iMac Pro. Different colors, better internal design for better cooling, etc.

As far as the overall design appearance. I don't know. To me personally the current iMac looks so much better than other AIO's its not even comparable. The only thing that is remotely close (again IMO) is the Asus AIO but that looks like a iMac rip off.

I think Apple did a great job making a design that still looks modern despite its age.

A slightly different design that looks nice is the Surface Studio. However its design also has limitation to performance, like speakers and proximity of the fan (noise source) to the user. Plus Apple has already done that.
This is a good point, we could see the iMac offfered in a space grey colour and with the new cooling system. Maybe Touch ID and the Touch Bar added to the keyboard along with the mouse and keyboard being in that space grey option. They could also reduce the bezels on the screen.
 

tozz

macrumors regular
Mar 7, 2014
104
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Apple never gave a year or release time frame for the next Mac Pro.

I doubt the iMac will get a redesign before 2019... I'm guessing. I just don't see the need.
Actually they did, saying it's planned for 2018 with the new display, I wouldn't expect anything other than maybe a WWDC announcement and shipping in December though, seems to be the common thread for the pro machines of late :p
 

Fishrrman

macrumors Core
Feb 20, 2009
19,692
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Really, how much is there on an iMac that can be "re-designed", and to what end?

It has a beautiful display in front.
The back has ports, a power plug, a RAM door, and a stand mount.
The stand is what it is.

It's pretty much as refined an "all in one" computer as one could find.

Aside:
The one "refinement" I'd like to see is a removable back plate (held on with screws, like the old iMac g5).
For me, it's function.
"Form" counts for much less.

It's a computer.
It's not a fashion statement.
 

PatriotInvasion

macrumors 68000
Jul 18, 2010
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Boston, MA
I feel like if they were going to redesign the case, this year was the perfect opportunity to do so given the conversion to Thunderbolt 3 ports on the back. My guess is they had the iMac Pro in the works for awhile and decided the current case design would be able to accommodate all that power. Given the relatively small market size for desktops, and the fact that no other AIO looks as good after all these years, they decided to extend the life of this design longer than they have in the past - especially with the iMac becoming more of a pro/niche machine.

As much as I agree with everyone that slimmer bezels, a reduced chin, and color options would be an awesome step in the right direction, it's hard to dislike this current design. The 5mm edges still look spectacular, the all aluminum enclosure is beautiful, and umm....5K Retina!....still unsurpassed by any competitor.

Reducing the foot print of the front face seems like a no brainer at some point, but color options seem less likely beyond maybe just space gray. I don't think they want that many keyboard and accessory SKUs that they'd probably have to sell separately for a small market. I'd also expect the space gray to serve as an iMac Pro status symbol for at least a year or more.

In the end, I opted to upgrade my Late 2013 to a 2017 model because I wanted 5K and was tired of waiting out a case redesign. I feel safe saying that we won't see a case redesign until Late 2018 at the earliest, and even so, I'd probably prefer the Rev B version of that, so that takes me well into 2019 anyway. In the meantime, I'm loving my 2017.
 
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EugW

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Jun 18, 2017
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I feel like if they were going to redesign the case, this year was the perfect opportunity to do so given the conversion to Thunderbolt 3 ports on the back. My guess is they had the iMac Pro in the works for awhile and decided the current case design would be able to accommodate all that power. Given the relatively small market size for desktops, and the fact that no other AIO looks as good after all these years, they decided to extend the life of this design longer than they have in the past - especially with the iMac becoming more of a pro/niche machine.

As much as I agree with everyone that slimmer bezels, a reduced chin, and color options would be an awesome step in the right direction, it's hard to dislike this current design. The 5mm edges still look spectacular, the all aluminum enclosure is beautiful, and umm....5K Retina!....still unsurpassed by any competitor.

Reducing the foot print of the front face seems like a no brainer at some point, but color options seem less likely beyond maybe just space gray. I don't think they want that many keyboard and accessory SKUs that they'd probably have to sell separately for a small market. I'd also expect the space gray to serve as an iMac Pro status symbol for at least a year or more.

In the end, I opted to upgrade my Late 2013 to a 2017 model because I wanted 5K and was tired of waiting out a case redesign. I feel safe saying that we won't see a case redesign until Late 2018 at the earliest, and even so, I'd probably prefer the Rev B version of that, so that takes me well into 2019 anyway. In the meantime, I'm loving my 2017.
The thing you're missing though is the 2018 will likely bring 6-core models to the iMac, since Intel's Coffee Lake i5 and i7 are both going 6-core for the upper end models. A 6-core i5 would be awesome, and a 6-core i7 would be monstrous (although the latter would likely run quite hot).

IOW, whether or not the form factor changes in 2018 (and I think it may), the platform will change in the form of a new CPU class, never before seen in mainstream Macs.
 

jlseattle

macrumors 6502
Jan 9, 2007
475
335
Seattle WA
I believe they might "clean-up" the design with thinner bezel and such but I don't expect a complete redesign. If it works, then keep it. I think the only thing I would like to the imac have is the ability to adjust the display up or down to help with height differences of different users. It's still a beautiful design.
 

bbydon

macrumors 6502a
May 18, 2005
583
87
ATL
Actually they did, saying it's planned for 2018 with the new display, I wouldn't expect anything other than maybe a WWDC announcement and shipping in December though, seems to be the common thread for the pro machines of late :p
This is what they said (via https://techcrunch.com/2017/04/04/apple-pushes-the-reset-button-on-the-mac-pro/) :
Apple- As part of doing a new Mac Pro — it is, by definition, a modular system — we will be doing a Pro display as well. Now you won’t see any of those products this year; we’re in the process of that. We think it’s really important to create something great for our pro customers who want a Mac Pro modular system, and that’ll take longer than this year to do.”

" Matthew Panzarino-Yes, that’s right, a new Mac Pro and new external Pro display are both on the way. But they won’t be coming this year." "This delay in the shift away from parallelism in the GPU architecture and the decision to re-design a new Mac Pro from scratch means that the new machine will not be arriving this year, and is instead slated to appear some time next year or further out (Apple did not specify)."

It's was everyone else saying 2018, not Apple. Apple just decided the trashcan was done 3 weeks prior to this announcement; they have no idea when a new Mac Pro will be ready and certainly aren't going to give a date that early in the process. Apple could very well have it done for 2018, but they aren't going to say it, till they know it.
 
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EugW

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Jun 18, 2017
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I'm personally 95% sure the new Mac Pro will come in 2018.

I believe they might "clean-up" the design with thinner bezel and such but I don't expect a complete redesign. If it works, then keep it. I think the only thing I would like to the imac have is the ability to adjust the display up or down to help with height differences of different users. It's still a beautiful design.
So, in other words, you think the iMac needs a redesign to improve ergonomics. And I would agree. Get rid of the chin already!

And I say this as someone currently using two of these aluminum Jay Leno chin iMacs side by side.
 

PatriotInvasion

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Jul 18, 2010
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The thing you're missing though is the 2018 will likely bring 6-core models to the iMac, since Intel's Coffee Lake i5 and i7 are both going 6-core for the upper end models. A 6-core i5 would be awesome, and a 6-core i7 would be monstrous (although the latter would likely run quite hot).

IOW, whether or not the form factor changes in 2018 (and I think it may), the platform will change in the form of a new CPU class, never before seen in mainstream Macs.
Well, I was also thinking if DisplayPort 1.3 and Thunderbolt 3 are natively supported by Cannonlake, that would be a potential time to change the case design since in theory, Apple would have build in fewer custom parts internally to drive the 5K display (thinking about the custom TCON they built and all of that). Either way, if I can get 2 years out of my 2017 model and then sell for a fancier new design, than I'll be a happy camper.
 

EugW

macrumors G3
Jun 18, 2017
8,469
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Well, I was also thinking if DisplayPort 1.3 and Thunderbolt 3 are natively supported by Cannonlake, that would be a potential time to change the case design since in theory, Apple would have build in fewer custom parts internally to drive the 5K display (thinking about the custom TCON they built and all of that). Either way, if I can get 2 years out of my 2017 model and then sell for a fancier new design, than I'll be a happy camper.
Good point on the DisplayPort 1.3, as Kaby Lake doesn't have it, and I don't think Coffee Lake gets it either, but how does it work with the 2017 iMac? At least the 2017 has Thunderbolt 3 now with single-cable support for 5K displays. Presumably it is 2 x DisplayPort 1.2.

I just hope that 3 years from now that 5K displays compatible with the iMac 2017 will be easy to get and inexpensive. But I suspect they will be hard to get and expensive, because the the iMac 2017 is not DisplayPort 1.3.

Maybe I'll just have to use my 1440p 2010 iMac as the second monitor until it dies.
 
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