PC & Tech Authority reviews Apple 27-in iMac: The ultimate all-in-one PC reigns supreme

“Although we saw the new iMac 21.5in at the end of 2012, Apple has kept us waiting impatiently for the redesigned iMac 27in,” Sasha Muller writes for PC & Tech Authority. “Thankfully, that wait is now over. It’s a stunning transformation: where the previous model was a thick slab, the all-new incarnation squeezes into a body that’s only 5mm thick at its edges.”

“As ever, the glossy 27in display is the focus of attention. It has the same 2560 x 1440 resolution as last year’s model (Retina technology hasn’t made its way into the iMac range yet), but that’s no disappointment,” Muller writes. “Put to the test with our colorimeter, the iMac’s display measures up superbly. With a maximum brightness of 437cd/m² and a contrast ratio of 949:1, movies and photographs simply burst from the glossy panel. Colour accuracy is excellent, too. With an average Delta E of only 1.6, the iMac’s display compares favourably to the best monitors money can buy… The iMac soared to a result of 1.03 in our Real World Benchmarks, just ahead of Dell’s similarly specified XPS One 27. What’s more, the Nvidia GPU delivered the best Crysis results we’ve seen from any all-in-one. At Full HD resolution and Very High quality settings, the iMac achieved a silky-smooth average of 58fps. Even upping the resolution to 2560 x 1440 was no problem: the iMac sailed through with an average of 36fps.”

Advertisement: Apple 27″ iMac Quad-Core Intel Core i5 2.9GHz/8GB RAM/1TB Fusion/NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660M graphics processor with 512MB of GDDR5/OS X Mountain Lion only $2,044.

Muller writes, “At $2889, this high-end version of Apple’s iMac 27in costs significantly more than its closest rival, Dell’s XPS One 27. However, the Apple surpasses Dell’s giant-sized all-in-one in almost every regard. The Dell’s display is good, but the iMac’s is sensational, and the superior GPU sees it trounce the Dell in our gaming benchmarks. If you’re in the market for the ultimate all-in-one PC, the Apple iMac 27in reigns supreme.”

Read more in the full review here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Fred Mertz” for the heads up.]


    1. If a Macintosh is not a personal computer, what is it? Let’s refer to an authority:

      “This whole vision of a personal computer just popped into my head. [In March 1975], I started to sketch out on paper what would later become known as the Apple I.” – Steve Jobs

      1. A Mac is a Mac. Would you call a Lamboghini a “car”? Would you call a Rolex a watch? Would you call a diamond a piece of carbon? These subtleties may be lost on you, but the rest of us get it.

  1. I’ve had mine since January and absolutely love it. Worth every penny. Runs significantly cooler than the previous gen I use at work. Display has noticeably less glare.

    1. I found with the old model I noticed the glare. It got fairly annoying at times. I can’t control the lighting environment at work. There are a number of bay windows around my desk.

      With the new model I don’t “notice” less glare, it just never comes to mind anymore. Sort of the way it should have been to begin with. I wouldn’t want to go back to the old model, not a chance.

      BTW nice to see an article that didn’t just regurgitate the specs.

  2. Proud owner of a new 27″ 3.4 Ghz Intel Core i7 with 24GB of RAM and Fusion Drive. Awesome monitor and awesome computer. Sexy edges for sure. And It’s even lighter than my old 27″ to boot. Needles to say, best Mac I’ve ever had.

  3. “As ever, the glossy 27in display is the focus of attention. It has the same 2560 x 1440 resolution as last year’s model (Retina technology hasn’t made its way into the iMac range yet), but that’s no disappointment,” Muller writes.

    Speak for yourself, Muller. Mac users should be disappointed that desktop resolutions are falling dramatically behind tablets, and with a complete redesign chose NOT to improve the display resolution.

    So you say that the iMac has to meet price points? OK, fine. But Apple decided that the MacBook Pro should be offered with display resolution options. With this opportunity to do the same with the iMac, Apple instead focused on a dimension that nobody is going to care about : the thickness of the edge bezel. One will only notice this when he yanks the iMac around in an attempt to find the ill-placed USB ports.

    Why doesn’t Apple offer standalone displays with 200 or 300 ppi resolution? Why does the Mac Pro not have the ability? If Cook can’t deliver a leap forward with the next Mac Pro, there will be much disgruntling amongst Mac power users.

    Cook and Co: stop blowing chances to show Apple really is the innovator it used to be.

    1. Almost a year ago Sharp announced discovery of a new IGZO structure that would allow them to produce displays with a pixel density of 498 pixels per inch. Is that what you’re looking for?

      According to Sharp that density means that the 27″ iMac’s screen (as measured by pixels) would be a 6.1″ display. By math that works up needing 19.6 of those 6.1″ displays to equal a 27″ display. So discarding dimensioning yield rates for larger panels, and making a possibly weird assumption that you can price displays based not on size but rather on pixel count, Apple’s 27″ “retina” display would be about $19K.

      I think this is far less about innovating and more about letting technologies and yield rates mature.

      1. In 2001, IBM introduced the T220 (22 inch diagonal) LCD display with a resolution of 3840×2400 pixels. Today,12 years later, wouldn’t you think the technology is not mature enough?

        Meanwhile a stroll through the CES show showed that home theatre enthusiasts are actively exploring “4K” and “8K” resolution video, with dozens of manufacturers introducing large displays for sale this year. Sony’s Playstation 4 will play “4K” resolution video and game companies are working to support it.

        Apple should be to. Before Cook, I never envisioned Apple to be the laggard.

        1. Oh, should give an example:

          Just to pick a random example, on TigerDirect.com you can purchase a Seiki SE50UY04 home theatre display — 50″ diagonal, “4K” resolution, 120Hz LCD with LED backlighting, for $1300.

          If Apple can’t find a way to offer such technology in desktop 20″ to 30″ sizes, then we should all be disappointed.

          Why exactly are you making up excuses why Apple can’t do new things like they used to, anyway?

          1. My apologies: I thought we were discussing retina-like displays with very high pixel per inch densities. Your 50″ 4K display sports 88 pixels per inch.

            Why are you expecting Apple to be an innovator in new manufacturing processes? Apple is a software company that assembles hardware (the lines blur a little with their CPU design team).

            1. The 2001 IBM displays from offered 204 ppi.
              The 2012/2013 Apple 27″ iMac offers 109 ppi, same as the 27″ displays from ~2009.

              The home theatre reference shows that manufacturing is available for both GPUs and larger-scale glass priced under $2k for consumer products. With volume pricing, Apple should easily be able to find high resolution displays for a 27″ or 30″ iMac. Or Apple might update the Thunderbolt display and Mac Pro GPU to offer the option of 4k resolution. Sadly, those users who buy a second display with the new iMac won’t have the option to update GPU to support “4K” resolution. Why? So you can stare at a thin display bezel.

              Bottom line, the problem is neither technology or price: it is management. Cook & Co. have clearly chosen not to be the industry technology innovator, but rather wait for somebody else to offer it before pushing the envelope. Hats off to Jony’s design team, but unlike the original iMac, it isn’t attracting a noticable number of PC converts.

              MDN keeps bragging how rich Apple is, with more market cap than Exxon, but Cook and Co. appear uninterested in using it to deliver the Apple community stuff that is “insanely great”. Instead it is “insanely late”, matching but not exceeding the competition’s offerings.

              Oh, and does anyone really want to buy iWork ’09 with than 2013 iMac? Cook is embarrassingly slow.

  4. Nice until you have to work on it. I don’t want to think of opening one up. Have to have a special tool and its glued together. Have to use that tool to break the glue seal.

  5. An all-in-one, really? With no optical drive? I think the new iMac is user hostile for the following reasons:

    -Premature removal of optical drive.
    -Not one conveniently accessible USB port.
    -Not one conveniently accessible SD slot.

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