Have you heard about iMac pro? The 24-inch iMac brought a new design and a faster chip to Apple’s all-in-one machine, but we’re still waiting for its more extensive, more immediate sibling to replace the current Intel-based 27-inch iMac. Bloomberg reported in May that Apple had put the larger iMac aside to focus on the 24-inch iMac’s launch, but since that Mac is now available, the rumor mill for the larger iMac has started churning.
The leaker claims that the iMac will feature a 27-inch mini-LED display with ProMotion technology. However, some prior rumors have indicated that the next-generation iMac will have a larger display. Additionally, unlike the 24-inch iMac, the “iMac Pro” will feature dark bezels, and they could slim bezel sizes down.
Apple launched a slew of products in two major events held this year. The Cupertino giant was speculated to host another event around November, but that doesn’t seem to be happening now. Apple was expected to launch the iPad Pro, larger iMac, and other products in November. However, as per reports, the iPad Pro, a larger iMac, is now scheduled to arrive in 2022. Apple held three launch events in 2020, but this year there will only be two.
iMac Pro: Great Power Comes With Great Responsibility
Apple’s next iMac could be an iMac Pro arriving in the first half of 2022, a leaker claims, one that could sport an M1 Pro or M1 Max and has a chance of having Face ID in the display.
Apple officially discontinued its Intel-based iMac Pro on March 19, pulling the product from its website after the last of its stock was sold. However, according to a new rumor, it seems a replacement for it could be on the way within months.
According to leaker @Dylandkt on Twitter, Apple is preparing to create an “iMac (Pro),” with Saturday’s tweet seemingly proposing the next iMac could be a “Pro” model due in the first half of 2022. The tweet continued that the model would be similar in design to the 24-inch iMac and Pro Display XDR, with a mini LED display and ProMotion support.
The screen would also have dark bezels, though no word on a notch. According to the leaker, Face ID was tested, though admits it’s “not confirmed” for the model.
For other specifications, it is claimed to run on an M1 Pro or M1 Max with 16GB of memory in the base model, along with 512GB of storage. The port selection includes HDMI, USB-C, an SD card, and an Ethernet port on the power brick.
Dylan claims the internal name candidate for the model is “iMac Pro” but warns the marketing team “can change gears very quickly.” The rationale for the name would be to “better distinguish” it from the 24-inch iMac, as it’s a “Pro device with a Pro chip.”
The leaker adds that the model will most likely have a 27-inch display and replace the existing 27-inch iMac. Rumors ahead of the 24-inch iMac launch claimed that a larger iMac model was planned, though it didn’t pay off during the launch event itself.
iMac pro 2022: perfect size and pleasant colors.
In January, Bloomberg reported that Apple planned on replacing both the Intel-based 21.5-inch and 27-inch iMacs with new machines that feature a unique design and Apple’s M1 system on a chip (SoC). Apple introduced the first Apple silicon-based redesigned all-in-one with the 24-inch iMac with a new design that shortens the chin, trims the bezels, and shrinks the enclosure down to an impressive 11.5 millimeters.
As for the larger iMac will reportedly use the same design as the 24-inch iMac, and speculation is that it could house a display as large as 32 inches. The current 27-inch iMac measures 25.6 inches wide, 20.3 inches tall, and 8 inches deep, and while Apple’s new design helps make the 24-inch iMac smaller than the 21.5-inch iMac it replaced, there isn’t that much of a difference in size (21.5 inches x 18.1 inches x 5.8 inches (with the stand) vs. 20.8 inches x 17.7 inches x 6.9 inches). So a new larger iMac could have a similar footprint to the 27-inch Intel iMac.
Apple offers the 24-inch iMac in several different color choices, but there haven’t been reports on Apple’s color choices for the larger iMac. The larger iMac is considered to be a “pro”-level iMac, and to create a differentiation between the consumer and pro levels, Apple may decide on different color choices like the iPhone Pro or stick with the traditional silver like that on the 27-inch iMac or space gray like on the discontinued iMac Pro.
iMac Pro 2022: All-in-all display
To get an idea of what we could expect with the display in the larger iMac, let’s look at what’s being used in the current iMac lineup and the Pro Display XDR and Liquid Retina XDR in the MacBook pro.
- 24-inch iMac: 4.5K Retina display (4480-by-2520 resolution) 500 nits brightness, wide color (P3), True Tone technology
- 27-inch iMac and iMac Pro: 5K Retina display (5120‑by‑2880 resolution), 500 nits brightness, wide color (P3), True Tone
- Liquid Retina XDR: 2K/3K Retina display, 1,600 nits peak brightness, 1,000,000:1 contrast ratio, wide color (P3), True Tone
- Pro Display XDR: 6K Retina display (6016-by-3384 resolution), 1,000 nits (XDR) or 500 nits (SDR) brightness, wide color (P3), True Tone
The upcoming larger iMac will have smaller bezels than the 27-inch iMac and iMac Pro, which could help the display reach a higher pixel density without making the show much bigger. In addition, a rumor by Ross Young in October following Apple’s “Unleashed” event suggested that Apple will be bringing the same Liquid Retina XDR display in the MacBook Pro and iPad Pro to the iMac.
The 27-inch iMac comes with standard glass on the front of the display, but for $300, Apple offers a nano-texture glass that provides a matte-like finish and does an excellent job of cutting down glare. Apple will probably continue to provide this with the new larger iMac. It dramatically cuts down on the gloss and glare.
iMac Pro: Apple Silicon
The 24-inch iMac fits in Apple’s consumer product lineup, and it’s outfitted with the M1, the same SoC that’s in Apple’s other consumer Macs. However, the larger iMac is part of Apple’s pro-Mac line and will have a faster SoC. Apple introduced the new M1 Pro and M1 Max for the MacBook Pro, and Apple will likely use those same chips in the next iMac. The iMac’s slim profile is similar to the MacBook Pro, which means the M1 Pro and M1 Max chips will work well.
According to Apple’s numbers, the M1 Pro is up to 70 percent faster than the M1, and the M1 Max delivers up to four times the GPU performance of the M1. Those numbers would bring the next iMac closer to the performance Apple delivered with the iMac Pro discontinued in 2021.
The Bottom Line
The 24-inch iMac and new MacBook Pro have improved FaceTime cameras that use the M1’s ISP to enhance the quality of an image. That exact FaceTime camera implementation is expected for the larger iMac as well. It’s possible that the camera could support Face ID since True Depth references were spotted in macOS Big Sur, though the MacBook Pro doesn’t support Face ID despite having a widescreen notch. If it doesn’t have Face ID, it will likely have Touch ID built into the keyboard like the 24-inch iMac.
The current 27-inch iMac has RAM slots that are user-accessible. Unfortunately, with Apple silicon, RAM is built into the SoC. If Apple also insists on maintaining the thinness of the iMac, there’s a good chance that the RAM will not be user upgradable. However, Apple introduced options up to 64GB with the M1 Pro on the MacBook Pro, so we doubt memory will be an issue for pro users.
According to Bloomberg, the larger iMac was “paused” so that Apple could get the 24-inch iMac out. No ship date for the larger iMac has been set, with the latest rumor from Dylan on Twitter claiming a 2022 launch because “Apple does not want their devices to compete for attention.” The price will likely fall in line with the pricing of the current 27-inch iMac, which starts at $1,799 since Apple kept similar pricing to the 21.5-inch iMac when it launched the 24-inch model. However, Apple increased the price of the higher-end MacBook Pro from $1,799 to $1,999, so the new iMac could see a price bump.