Apple today introduced a new 21.5-inch iMac, priced starting at $1,099. But. while it may be an elegant and relatively affordable all-in-one computer, the entry-level model sacrifices performance for pricing.
The new 21.5-inch iMac features a 1.4 GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 processor, with Turbo Boost Speeds up to 2.7 GHz, Intel HD 5000 graphics, 8GB of memory and a 500 GB hard drive.
$200 more gets you a 2.7 GHz quad-core processor and twice the hard drive space. This makes the mid-level 21.5-inch iMac a much better starting point for music apps and other demanding applications.
Pricing & Availability
The new 21.5-inch iMac is available today. Configure-to-order options include a 1TB hard drive, a 1TB Fusion Drive, and up to 256GB flash storage.
Update: Ars Technica has posted a full review of the entry-level iMac. They note:
“If you’re an individual looking at the iMac and you’re trying to get the most value for your dollar, the $1,099 iMac just doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. You give up around half of your CPU and GPU performance and half your hard drive capacity to save 18 percent of the cost of the computer.
One of the $1,299 iMacs will run faster, will feel faster for longer, and will be more versatile. It will increase the useful life of the computer and its resale value. Don’t buy one of these to save $200.”