Apple hasn't let the coronavirus pandemic stop it from releasing all manner of new products in 2020, from a new iPad Pro to an updated MacBook Pro, via a brand new iPhone SE. Now Apple has added a refreshed 27-inch iMac to the list, and like pretty much everything Apple has released this year so far, it features an almost identical design to its predecessor.
Under the hood, the new iMac features a ton of upgrades including 10th generation Intel processors, double the memory capacity and four times the storage capacity. But in today's new frontier of video calls and home working, perhaps the most exciting upgrades come in the form of a new 1080p FaceTime camera and "studio-quality mics". The iMac is already our best computer for video editing, but it could soon be the best for video conferencing too. (Plus, see here for our review of the iMac 2020.)
Apple is certainly touting (opens in new tab) the new iMac as a killer computer for creatives. "From the aspiring creative looking for inspiration, to the serious pro pushing the limits of their creativity, the new 27-inch iMac delivers the ultimate desktop experience," the company says. Indeed the new machine is said to offer 40 percent faster 8K ProRes transcoding in Final Cut Pro X, and 35 percent faster rendering in 3D software Autodesk Maya (check out our best Maya tutorials).
For creatives who mostly care about the raw power of the machine, the new iMac is an exciting prospect, particularly for those using the best video editing software and 3D artists. But we can't help but feel disappointed at the lack of a design refresh. The 27-inch iMac has looked the same since 2012 (!) – and while the razor thin profile seemed incredible eight years ago, the thick-bezelled display is looking a little tired when compared with the edge-to-edge screen of the 2020 iPad Pro, for example.
Adding insult to injury (minor injury, that is – worse things have happened in 2020) is the fact that not only have we heard rumours of an upcoming iMac with an iPad Pro-inspired design language, but such rumours have spawned some stunning concept designs. Apple's new iMac looks positively prehistoric compared with this contemporary concept with built-in wireless charging.
Still, while a sleek new look would have been nice, it's what's on the inside that counts – and the new iMac is packing some seriously impressive horsepower inside that very familiar design. The 27-inch iMac 2020 is available to order now at Apple.com (opens in new tab), and starts at $1,799/£1,799. It's also part of the Apple Back to School sale, which is now live.