Apple announces next-generation 'Haswell' iMacs

Form factor remains unchanged. No word on OS X Photo: Apple

CUPERTINO, Calif., September 25, 2013 — In a little-noted Tuesday press release, Apple announced a major minor update/refresh for its flagship iMac personal computer line. The new iMacs, available immediately, now boast fourth generation, power-saving Intel “Haswell” architecture quad-core processors, new and faster NVIDIA graphics cards, next generation Wi-Fi and faster PCIe flash storage choices. The late 2012-early 2013 thin form factor remains the same on both the 21.5-inch and 27-inch iMac flavors.

For the spec-hungry user, according to Apple’s BusinessWire release, “the 21.5-inch iMac is available with a 2.7 GHz quad-core Intel Core i5 with Turbo Boost speeds up to 3.2 GHz and Intel Iris Pro for a suggested retail price of $1,299 (US); and with a 2.9 GHz quad-core Intel Core i5 with Turbo Boost speeds up to 3.6 GHz and NVIDIA GeForce GT 750M for a suggested retail price of $1,499 (US).

“The 27-inch iMac is available with a 3.2 GHz quad-core Intel Core i5 with Turbo Boost speeds up to 3.6 GHz and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 755M for a suggested retail price of $1,799 (US); and with a 3.4 GHz quad-core Intel Core i5 with Turbo Boost speeds up to 3.8 GHz and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 775M for a suggested retail price of $1,999 (US).”

8 GB of memory is now standard on all models. Ditto a 1TB disk drive. More power, storage, and greater drive capacities, including a partial solid state “Fusion drive” combo and a fully solid state “flash” drive will be available as higher-cost options. The new machines also come with two Thunderbolt and four USB 3.0 ports for connecting to external storage and other high performance peripheral devices.

“iMac continues to be the example that proves how beautiful, fast and fun a desktop computer can be,” bragged Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing. “Inside its ultra-thin aluminum enclosure, the new iMac has the latest Intel processors, faster graphics, next generation 802.11ac Wi-Fi and faster PCIe flash storage,” he said.

The new iMacs now support the next generation 802.11ac Wi-Fi protocols, according to the release. When connected to an 802.11ac base station, such as Apple’s updated Airport devices, the new iMacs deliver wireless performance that is up to three times faster than the previous generation, according to the company.

SEE RELATED: New iPhone, Apple announcements underwhelm Wall Street

The new iMacs are shipping with OS X Mountain Lion standard. There was no announcement on when Apple’s new OS X “Mavericks” operating system will be available, although it’s strongly expected that this release will occur in mid- to late-October. If past practice is any clue, “Mavericks” should be available as a free download to purchasers of the new machines, but this has not been confirmed.

Apple PR indicates that all iMac models are now available via Apple’s online store, the company’s retail stores, and at select Apple Authorized Resellers.

Read more of Terry’s news and reviews at Curtain Up! in the Entertain Us neighborhood of the Washington Times Communities. For Terry’s investing and political insights, visit his Communities columns, The Prudent Man and Morning Market Maven, in Business.

Follow Terry on Twitter @terryp17

SEE RELATED: Gundlach: Apple a ‘broken company’



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Terry Ponick

Now writing on investing, politics, music, movies and theater for the Washington Times Communities, Terry was formerly the longtime music and culture critic for the Washington Times print edition (1994-2009) before moving online with Communities in 2010.  



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