Apple Updates iMac With New Intel Processors, Speedy 802.11ac Wi-Fi And Faster Flash Storage

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Apple has just released an updated version of its iMac all-in-one computer. The update is a minor one, unlike the considerable redesign it got at the end of last year, but it brings brand new improved performance and internal specs to the iMac line. New features include Intel quad core processors, 802.11ac Wi-Fi and faster PCIe-based flash storage.

These new iMacs now feature a 2.7GHz quad-core Intel Core i5 processor on the base 21.5-inch model, which is the first desktop with Intel’s Crystalwell architecture, and new Iris Pro graphics. Iris Pro is a new Intel GPU that’s popular on mid-range gaming PCs, and should offer considerable improvements over the previous model. There are also CTO options up to 3.4GHz Core i5 Haswell processors, and NVIDIA GeForce 700 series graphics on the top model, with up to 4GB of dedicated memory.

802.11ac networking means the new iMacs can work with the latest AirPort Extreme and Time Capsule routers, which introduced that wireless standard earlier this year. PCIe-based flash storage should offer speed improvements of up to 50 percent over last-gen models, according to Apple, for faster booting, loading of apps and general system performance. All-flash CTO options now range up to a full 1 TB of storage, with Fusion Drives available in either 1TB or 3TB.

8GB of RAM and a 1TB drive are now standard, with 32GB max configuration options for custom orders. Apple starts selling the new iMac today on its website, and in stores as well, according to its press release. Customers can choose between stand-mounted versions, and ones with built-in VESA adapters if they’re mounting on their own swingarms or other hardware. Prices start at $1,299, and range up to $1,999 for base configurations.

The top-end 27-inch model offers up to 40 percent faster graphics, and combined with PCIe and the new Intel Haswell quad-core processors, that’s a might attractive package for anyone doing some gaming or heavy-duty video editing. Plus, it’s all wrapped up in the slimmer body design, which, as mentioned in my review of last year’s model, is a big improvement on the iMac’s aesthetics.