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5 Reasons Why Apple's New 27-inch iMac Is a Great Buy By Jesse Hollington Earlier this week Apple quietly unveiled a refreshed 27-inch iMac, and although it wasn't the major redesign that had previously been rumoured, it's still a pretty nice update to a system that's been mostly neglected for the past few years. To that end, it not only adds more than a spec bump, but it could actually be the iMac you've been waiting for. With Apple planning to transition to ARM-based Macs by next year, this is very likely going to be the last Intel-based desktop Mac that we'll ever see, but if you've been itching to pull the trigger on a new iMac, there's a lot to like about this one. Read on for 5 reasons why Apple's newest 27-inch iMac may still be a great choice. 5. It's Faster Naturally, Apple has improved the speed of its iMac across the board, and while you can go a bit crazy and splurge on a new 10-core Intel i9 version, even the base model offers considerably better performance than previous iMacs. In fact, according to benchmarks by Mac Otakara, the entry-level 27-inch model, which features only a 3.1GHz Core i5 CPU, clocks in at 20% faster on RAW CPU performance than the equivalent 2019 model, and in fact even comes in faster than the third-tier 2019 iMac, which sported an Intel Core i5 3.7GHz chip. Similarly, the Radeon Pro 5300 GPU offers improvements of 36% in Metal performance and 43% in OpenCL over the Radeon Pro 570X in last year's iMac. 4. It's Still Intel As we said, this is the last Intel- based iMac you'll likely ever see, so if you really need to stick with Intel — and there are some really good reasons to do so right now — then don't hold your breath for an 11th-gen CPU in an iMac next year. This is especially important if you plan on running Windows in any way, since Apple has already announced that Boot Camp will be completely out on the new Apple Silicon Macs, meaning it simply won't be possible to natively boot Windows anymore, and it's likely going to take some time even to figure out the situation with virtualization — both from the perspective of VMware and Parallels updating their apps for the new ARM- based architecture, but also whether Microsoft will even permit Windows to be licensed in this manner. There's also no reason to fear that Apple's ARM transition will leave its Intel Macs out in the cold — Apple has promised to continue to support Intel-based Macs for a very long time, and there's no reason to assume that developers are going to be dropping support for Intel binaries anytime soon either. 3. True FaceTime HD For reasons we can only guess at, Apple has saddled its Macs with substandard webcams for years. While the iPhone and iPad Pro gained 4K-capable front TrueDepth cameras, even last year's flagship 16-inch MacBook Pro remained stuck with a mere 720p shooter. So the fact that Apple has finally updated the FaceTime camera on this year's iMac to full 1080p HD is actually a really big deal by itself, especially if you're someone who spends a lot of time in video conferencing — which, let's face it, is just about everybody these days. In fact, if you're a heavy user of FaceTime or Zoom et al, this spec bump alone may make a new iMac well worth the purchase price, and as The Verge discovered, there's actually more to this new camera than just a resolution increase. Apple is also using the new T2 Security Chip — which clearly offers a lot more than just "security" — to do image processing to the video stream, meaning that it now offers things like face detection, tone mapping, and exposure control, providing more accurate lighting and skin tones. 2. True Tone The new iMac also gets a nice display improvement that users of MacBooks and iPads actually take for granted these days: True Tone display technology. This means that you can now ensure that the colours you see on your screen are properly balanced for the ambient lighting in your room. While it was always possible to do this manually by fiddling with the colour settings (which may have been one reason Apple felt True Tone wasn't as necessary on a stationary desktop iMac), the True Tone feature means that you don't have to do this, nor do you have to guess if you've gotten it right. It's going to be a big boon if you do any kind of photo or video editing on your iMac. 1. Nano Texture Coating Previously the exclusive domain of Apple's $5,000 Pro Display XDR, the new 27-inch iMac gains the nano-texture glass finish that significantly reduces the glare on that big iMac screen, even in bright lighting conditions. Most of the reviews so far note that it works really well, standing up to just about anything expect direct sunlight. Unfortunately, it doesn't come cheap — it will add $500 to the price of your iMac, so you either need to have deep pockets or a real aversion for glare (or both) to justify it. It's also pretty fragile, with Apple offering some very specific instructions for cleaning it, but despite these caveats, we can't argue that it's a great option to have available on a desktop iMac, where it's often virtually impossible to keep the glare away even at the best of times.

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