Importance of 2012 iMac

By Daniel Chubb - Aug 4, 2012

It became clear towards the end of last month that the 2012 iMac would be a refresh and not a completely new model. This news arrived along with a rumor that the 2012 iMac would be leaving factories this month, and are likely to be ready for shipping to the consumer in September. This means that Apple is in for a really busy few months considering iOS 6 and iPhone 5 are also expected to drop around the same time.

Importance of the 2012 iMac refresh differs by upgrader – if you are an iMac owner that upgraded to the 2011 model, then you could already have SSD and a pretty fast machine with a reasonable amount of RAM. These people might not be too worried about waiting for the iMac to receive an update, which could mean a 2013 Retina iMac would be a better option for them.

There are also a growing number of Windows users moving to Apple this year, and some of these people want a desktop alternative but don’t want to purchase the current iMac when a 2012 refresh could see a release date any day now. We’ve heard directly from a few of these users and a common problem they express is the lack of information from Apple regarding an iMac update, which their Windows brands might not have been so secretive about future products.

One PR reader said, “It’s frustrating that Apple don’t give a real hint“, and continued “I want to buy the 2012 iMac but the wait could turn me back to a newer PC“. Current Apple fans have shared encouragement with Mac newbies, and explain to them that the iMacs will refresh soon, and they should “hang in there“. Some people also run Windows on the Intel iMacs, and explain, “You could never own a better PC than the iMac“.

What should we expect with the 2012 iMac? You won’t get a Retina display this year, but you can expect some nice hardware improvements like Ivy Bridge chips that use 22nm technology. Some people hope Apple will offer a built-to-order iMac model, which allows for the Core i7 Extreme Edition processor.

SSD is something some buyers want as standard while others would hate that idea, and instead prefer the option of a combo drive using standard storage and a solid-state drive. Integrated graphics is another issue for some purchases, and these people want an iMac to handle more demanding projects and gaming. It’s worth noting that one of Intel’s VPs recently revealed that the Ivy Bridge chip is designed with the Retina display in-mind.

Do you have a certain feature that must make it to the 2012 iMac, and how important is it to get an upgrade this year?

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  • Meg

    I still wait for a non-glossy screen – no more – no less

  • Azeem

    I’ve been waiting for some time now for the iMac after using the same PC for over 10 years (with minor configurations recently) and it’s really frustrating me as there is no information provided by Apple and i feel as if i should stick to a PC and get a Dell. I hope for at least a refresh in September but i doubt it with iOS 6 and the iPhone 5 coming out. What i would love to see on it is a 6 or 8 core processor as STANDARD ( Apple really rip off for configuration options ) and at least 8 GB Ram as standard as well, they should also all come with a minimum of 1TB hard drive as 500GB is nothing now days with some software taking as much as 18GB. Face time camera should be made to 1080p and they should all have Intel i7 processors. I know that these are unlikely changes but it’s what i would like to see, as for the Retina Display, i really don’t care about it after seeing the price of it for the Macbook Pro.

  • GrayTurtle

    I want to replace my G4 (2001 vintage) but as I hold on to my Macs for awhile, I don’t want to buy a machine only to have it be outdated within a week.  Yes, I’ll wait (hey, what’s a few more months after 10 years?) but it doesn’t mean I’m not frustrated with the Apple process.

  • Alpheus Robinson II

    The only thing on  my mind with the 2012 iMacs is what type of graphics will it have.  Apple switched back to using Nvidia with the MacBook Pros this year (which in my opinion are better than the AMD graphics they have now anyday), so I’m hoping for a similar transaction with the new iMacs.  I could care less about the Retina Display, personally.  Considering how expensive the MacBook Pro version is, I’ll gladly hold out on that.  They just need to make sure they have some pretty decent Nvidia graphics at the ready.

  • I have a mid-2006 20 inch iMAC and am really screwed. It was able to run Lion but can’t run Mountain Lion. I’m very frustrated with the lack of information on a 2012 iMAC upgrade and release date. If it goes beyond late this year I may jump ship and go with a high powered PC. I wish Apple would be more responsive to users with upgrade information. NEW SUBJECT: I also think Apple is making a huge mistake with their stock price above $500. They should do a 10 for 1 split and a lot more “regular” people would buy their stock. Its a psychological thing – 500 bucks plus for 1 share of stock.I understand the math on it – i.e, it doesn’t make any difference – but it really does!!!!! 

  • If Apple is only going to speed bump the current iMac line what are they waiting for? Couldn’t they have introduced speed bumped iMacs at WWDC? If they are planning a major new design I can’t seem them releasing it this year as it would take away from the hotly anticipated iPhone 5. 

    Personally I’ve been waiting since last year to dump my 15″ MacBook Pro for the 27″ iMac and am getting very frustrated that it’s taking Apple this long to release the new units. 

  • Dominic Knoetze

    I have a 2011 iMac and the biggest disappointment is the lack of USB 3 ports.Why would Apple not include it,if the technology is available.Lets hope that 2012 would bring such a great feature to the iMac.
    Im not upgrading a faster CPU this year.

  • Jeve Stobs

    Apple, do something quick!!! I have the money & here I am waiting……………………..& waiting………………….zzZzzZzz

  • I’ve been making documentary films on a 2009 macbook pro 13″ for years, and now that I’m about to make the jump to professional video production I’m interested selling my macbook and upgrading for a more powerful iMac desktop solution. I think I’d rather wait an extra year for the Retina Display, especially considering the fact that it’s being developed with Ivy Bridge in mind. I wouldn’t buy an iMac unless I was getting a significant upgrade from currently available models, not because I feel they are incapable of handling the workload that I need, but because if I’m going to shell out that much $ for a desktop all-in-one,  I’m not going to want to feel as though I shouldn’t have upgraded when its next iteration comes out with fantastic features (like Retina display and Ivy Bridge) that would have made waiting worth while.

    • Mat Pridham

      Personally, I would rather have the pre-retina model…  With a whopping 5,120px x 2,880px display, it would require one hell of a video card to power just the OS;  let alone Photoshop, After Effects or Final Cut.

      Just 2 cents.

      • Mojo

        you dont need to double everything to get “retina”. The 27″ imac screens already had a higher pixel density than the macbook pros where they did the resolution doubling. A modest bump would get it into “retina” territory, which is really just marketing, as it all depends on how far away the screen is from your eyes…. it’s already almost there.

        Lets also not forget that video card with 1/10th the power of today’s GPUs were powering multiple displays at resolutions much higher than 1080p each. Powering a simple desktop at 5000K resolution is not that hard. It’s a myth that GPU’s of today arent ready for this. The only delays are the display prices keeping the total cost of the machine out of Apple’s intended range.

  • Buying a PC is not on my mind, but school is, and I hope Apple releases these at the start of school. I heard that Apple is very secretive. I’m glad I did my research and choose to be patient for a while, for now I have my MacBook Air to keep me busy. Ivy bridge CPUs, Lion, and iPhone 5 will be worth the wait.

  • Vasilopoulosvasil

    I am right on the verge of buying a PC because my last computer a toshiba laptop stopped working three months ago and I no longer have the patience to wait much longer. If Apple would announce a certain date I would consider whether or not I can live without a computer till then and act accordingly. I also thought about buying a MacBook pro but I would need an external monitor, keyboard and mouse and that would raise the price much higher.
    So here I sit and wait for a little longer writing this from my iPad and hope September is the final delivery date!