So this cheaper iMac...

Discussion in 'iMac' started by casperes1996, Apr 12, 2014.

  1. casperes1996 macrumors 68030


    Jan 26, 2014
    Horsens, Denmark
    Rumor has it that Apple will soon launch a cheaper iMac to go along with the updated versions of the current lineup. I'd like to hear your thought on potential hardware, and what corners Apple may cut to get the price down. Do you expect a different design? Do you expect it to be made of different materials (like iPhone 5C being made of plastic)? The lowest end 21.5 inch iMac already comes with an integrated GPU, so I'm guessing we'll see the same in a cheaper model, perhaps downgraded from Iris Pro to simply Iris. I doubt they'll go for a non-Iris model though. I expect either a very small SSD (128-256) or a 1TB HDD to be the default, with 8 gigs of 1600MHz RAM. I expect the CPU to be a low end i5, and I think the machine will be quite similar to current 21.5 inch models, with the other 21.5 maybe getting a 4K retina makeover and the cheaper model staying 1920x1080. Similarly I think Apple will run two simultaneous lines of 27 inch models, a 5k retina (only available with the highest end GPU, presumably GTX 880m, or if Apple and Nvidia has something going that they told nobody about, GTX 880MX, which would be sweet!). In terms of design I sincerely doubt anything will change for any of the iMac models, with the exception of maybe a slimmer bezel, but I think that's a bit unlikely. I also don't think we'll see a change in screen sizes.
    What about you guys?
  2. fastlanephil macrumors 65816


    Nov 17, 2007
    I think Apple would just do a silent hardware bump on all the iMacs and keep the current entry iMac as is but drop the price to triple digits for schools, teachers and students.
  3. Naimfan macrumors 601


    Jan 15, 2003
    Apple should put an i5 mini in the case from the last iMac with optical drive and sell it for $799.
  4. topmounter macrumors 68020


    Jun 18, 2009
    FEMA Region VIII
    Base spec 21.5 w/ plastic case. Optional BTO colors to match your iPhone 5c.
  5. mmomega macrumors 68030


    Dec 30, 2009
    DFW, TX
    Doubt we'll ever see a plastic case again.

    If I saw a less expensive iMac I'd guess the internals of a MacBook Air with a 20-21" screen and even thinner body, almost completely flat (not the bump on the back like current iMacs).
    Core i5 Dual Core 2.somethingGHz Haswell-E w/ onchip graphics
    4GB DDR4
    128GB PCIe drive
    TB, USB3 , SD card slot

    or an A8X/A9 ARM type chip to power it.
  6. McGiord macrumors 601


    Oct 5, 2003
    Dark Castle
    I don't think they will be making an iMac with a plastic case, as I believe it will not be good for thermal dissipation.
    Hardware components are getting cheaper and cheaper, so they can lower the price and get more units sold.
  7. Lesser Evets macrumors 68040

    Lesser Evets

    Jan 7, 2006
    A $999 iMac would be good, but if they really want to get a broader customer base they should compact and neuter the mini down into a micro box without much or any capability for customization and sell it for $399.

    As soon as Apple puts a monitor on a Mac, they have trouble going under $999.
  8. rambo47 macrumors 6502a


    Oct 3, 2010
    Denville, NJ
    I'm in the camp that doesn't see a new plastic model. I see a new/bumped up specced model as the new flagship line and the current models dropping in price to comprise the lower-end solution. Much like Apple releasing the iPhone 5 but keeping the 4s as a cheaper solution, all before the slightly cheaper 5c/5s models. Plastic is fine for a lower-end phone, maybe even a tablet, but not for an iMac. I just don't see Apple going in that direction on their computers.
  9. mojolicious macrumors 68000


    Mar 18, 2014
    Sarf London
    Heresy! The period from the first G5 model to the first 24" model was the Golden Age of iMac Design, and it's been all downhill from there.

    That said, unless the Apple Education Sales Division have managed to secretly secure a million orders, there's no way the iMac is going to be physically repackaged. And there can't be a significantly cheaper iMac without physical repackaging. There's very little scope to chisel away at the price when the internals are only a fraction of the cost of the casing and screen. Apple can't even skimp on a Superdrive these days.

    There was an 'Early 2013' education-only iMac with a 3.3 GHz dual core i3, Intel HD Graphics 4000, 500GB HDD, 4GB RAM, wired keyboard, wired mouse. For comparison, the base 'Late 2012' iMac was 2.7 GHz quad core i5, GeForce GT 640M, 1TB HDD, 8GB RAM, wireless keyboard/mouse.

    Price when new for the Early 2013 = $1099
    Price when new for the Late 2012 = $1299

    I'd be delighted to be proved wrong by the appearance of a 19-20" iMac in a less 'premium' casing, but I think this new 'cheaper iMac' will simply be the continuation of the current base model with a hundred bucks knocked off the tag.
  10. AppleWarMachine macrumors 65816


    Sep 27, 2011
    Michigan, US
    don't get too get what you pay for :D

    it disappoints me that Apple makes cheaper versions of it's own products
  11. MH01 Suspended


    Feb 11, 2008
    Unapologetic Plastic! ;)

    Though I very much doubt it, remove the aluminium and you loose a huge heatsink. Plastic ones will just overheat.
  12. crsh1976 macrumors 6502a

    Jun 13, 2011
    I wouldn't bet on different materials for a cheaper model, that would require a whole separate set of pieces and assembly lines.

    They'd likely use the current design and just put in a lower-end CPU (think dual core processor instead of a quad), less RAM (4 GB instead of 8, soldered of course), basic hard drive (not a SSD or Fusion) and possibly even a lower-quality LED panel.

    It's the currently-missing education model the iMac line lost with the last refresh.
  13. omenatarhuri macrumors 6502a

    Feb 9, 2010
    If they get OS X to run on the Apple A8 chip they could radically lower the price. The real key is how to do that, but keeping in mind they have done it before (PowerPC -> Intel) it is within the realm of possibility. They could also get super efficient laptops using the upcoming A8.
  14. Tanax macrumors 6502a

    Jun 15, 2011
    Stockholm, Sweden
    I doubt they'll release any iMac with an Intel Extreme processor, less so a "cheaper" iMac. Haswell-E is out of the picture.

    If they go the other way though and release an "iMac Pro" that people have been speculating on, Intel Haswell-E might be a good candidate.
  15. mmomega, Apr 15, 2014
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2014

    mmomega macrumors 68030


    Dec 30, 2009
    DFW, TX
    This was meant as Haswell part 2 or the Haswell refresh chips coming this year before Broadwell.
    Something like an i5-4460 which is the new "bottom of the barrel" quad core" or the i3-4150.
  16. peglegjack macrumors 6502


    Jul 30, 2011
    Brooklyn, NY
    I wouldn't doubt it if there was a prototype at Apple headquarters somewhere running an A8 chip. They have to be at least testing it out.
  17. definitive macrumors 68000


    Aug 4, 2008
    probably 4 gigs of ram, and starting price of $1,099.
  18. Zellio macrumors 65816


    Feb 7, 2012
    I'm guessing plastic with iOS arm processor, apple has been rumored to switch to arm processors for desktop for awhile..
  19. kazmac macrumors 603


    Mar 24, 2010
    On the sliver scream
    I hope that is the way they go

    If the entry level becomes the cheaper iMac, I hope they also retain the BTO options too.

    From my understanding (which I hope is incorrect), a cheaper iMac would be the least amount of RAM and little to no upgrade options. If they do release this option, I'll stick with the BTO 21.5" iMac, if I stay with the iMac as my go-to Mac.
  20. iMcLovin macrumors 68000


    Feb 11, 2009
    They will not stop selling an high end iMac. To many people use that as a professional machine. Also, Apple have always made a new version of the iMac that is more powerful than the previous model.

    I look forward to a new BTO that is a Beast. Hope it comes before summer, rather than after. THough I dont need it currently, but I want it :)
  21. animatedude macrumors 65816

    Feb 27, 2010
    well....each one of us has his own theory on what's the right thing to do or what's the right size but me....i'm interested in THE TRUTH and truth is:

    -27'' iMac display is too big for the average user they need to release a 24'' iMac for the mainstream.

    -21'' iMac display is too big for teens and kids they need to release a smaller size like 19'' iMac for tweens.

    -27'' Thunderbolt display is way too small for the professionals they need to release 30''-32'' one for designers and professionals.

    The end.
  22. kazmac macrumors 603


    Mar 24, 2010
    On the sliver scream
    I know they will not stop making a high-end iMac. By BTO options I meant for the cheapest iMac as well as the high end.

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