Prior to this week, rumors had teased the eventual debut of an entry-level iMac for this year’s 2014 model year refresh, with Apple hoping to move closer to the magic $1,000 sweet spot and reach out to a wider market. And just as expected, Apple did come through with an entry-level 2014 iMac this week, […]
Prior to this week, rumors had teased the eventual debut of an entry-level iMac for this year’s 2014 model year refresh, with Apple hoping to move closer to the magic $1,000 sweet spot and reach out to a wider market. And just as expected, Apple did come through with an entry-level 2014 iMac this week, moving the previous entry-level trim to the mid-level, and offering a PC that many people now feel is a bit of a waste of money. Or, to put it more bluntly, a rip-off.
This comes just two months after Apple released a cheaper entry-level MacBook Air, cutting the price of its base thin-and-light notebook by $100 to $899. Now Apple has a 21.5-inch iMac 2014 with lower-end specs than the previous base trim, and to be precise, the machine’s basics include a 1.4 GHz Intel Core i5 dual-core processor, 8 GB RAM, and 500 GB hard drive space, with graphics courtesy of an older solution, and not the Intel Iris GPUs found underneath Apple’s other iMacs. And since previous rumors had also suggested Apple debuting a higher-end iMac with Retina Display, it’s no wonder why so many consumers and tech journalists have found themselves nonplussed by Apple’s 2014 model year refresh for the iMac.
The iMac is for all intents and purposes a business machine, and if you consider the needs of your typical business user, the entry-level 21.5-inch iMac doesn’t make for a very promising piece of hardware. For one, graphics and web designers and animation professionals typically need only the best graphics solutions out there. The entry-level iMac 2014, sadly, sports a lower-end Intel GPU under the hood. Hardcore productivity users who need a PC for whatever small or medium-sized business they are running need all the space they can have on their PC, and 500 GB is hardly enough for anyone who uses their PC as a business machine and nothing but that. Sure, it could suffice for those who are more into gaming, but not for intensive business users. All told, the budget-priced iMac is about 40 percent slower than the hitherto slowest iMac, and while benchmarks can be easily faked, it’s worth noting nonetheless that early benchmark readings have not been kind to the machine.
Forbes was one of the sources that had called the new entry-level 21.5-inch iMac a “rip-off”, and while Gotta Be Mobile wasn’t as scathing, the tech site said pretty much the same thing – buyers can get better deals on refurbs. Both publications pointed out that a refurbished 21.5-inch iMac with the previous entry-level configuration – 2.7 GHz quad-core Intel Core i5, 8 GB RAM, 1 TB hard drive, Intel Iris graphics – would only cost buyers $1,099, the same price you’d be paying for Apple’s new base configuration for its long-running line of all-in-one PCs.