Apple Confirms No More 27-inch iMacs

Originally published at: Apple Confirms No More 27-inch iMacs - TidBITS

Apple has confirmed to The Verge that it will not make an Apple silicon version of the 27-inch iMac. Sad to say, it’s time to think about what other Mac and display combinations would be best for your post-iMac needs.

I have a 2014 27" Retina iMac. After Apple made this obsolete with the introduction of Monterey I waited to see whether a replacement with Apple Silicon would appear. Earlier this year I gave up and bought an M2 Mac mini and Studio display. At least this announcement means I was right not to keep waiting but I really would prefer an all-in-one.

I gave up on Apple displays after my 2004 Apple Studio Display bit the dust after 4 years. I’m using a Dell 27" 4K monitor that I picked up on sale for about $250 and use it with a Mini. I need at least a 27" screen to read the screen reasonably easily. I assume Apple thought they couldn’t make a healthy profit on a 27" iMac because they wouldn’t be able to sell enough.

It won’t be an all in one…but most people should get a mini and monitor of whatever brand or a Studio if they need more power or RAM. I’m not real sure there’s anything to the 32 inch version rumors either…could be but is it going to be high enough demand at whatever price it is to make it worth it to Apple? Dunno…

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Would it be that terrible to go and buy a high quality 27" display and then attach a Mac mini (whatever configuration you like) to the back of it?

I did something similar in my living room using 3M Dual-Lock fasteners to attach my satellite TV set-top-box to the back of a TV. Use some short cables and zip ties and everything looks beautiul.

I see no reason why a Mac mini can’t be connected to a display using the same technique. I’d just make sure to mount it with the ports facing up, since that’s also the exhaust from the fan, and you probably want to blow heat out the top and not from some other side.

Again, some careful cable management (including using whatever is built-in to your display) and you’re looking at a finished product that’s almost as nice as an iMac, especially if you won’t have people sitting in a place where they might see the back of your display.


I have a 21" 2019 Intel iMac and, frankly, going forward this is the way I will replace it when the time comes. Well, with maybe a smaller monitor than 27’. This is our second iMac and the display has always been fine long after the computer needed upgrading, so I’m thinking that long-term this will be a more cost-effective way, keeping the monitor and replacing only the desktop.

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I have just posted in “Don’t install Sonoma” with relevant info. My 2019 27" 1Tb iMac is due for retirement (see that post).
Rather than buy a new 24" iMac I have, for now, connected a 2022 M2 Macbook Air to a 32" UHD 4K display. The Macbook is in clamshell mode. This works very well.
Additional… I purchased an LG 32" 4K UHD Monitor. It is probably around US$500 in the USA. I understand it is important to go for the “UHD” spec for such a large screen.
The USB-c cable works well and plugs straight into the Macbook Air. Seems tidier than an HDMI cable.
No need for Smart TV features but it did take me a while to find the tiny joystick-style button underneath for controlling the settings :sunglasses:"%2B4K%2BUHD%2BMonitor&qid=1699322758&sr=8-7&th=1

I don’t really see this as a problem provided at least one of these three things happens:

  1. Apple introduces a 32" iMac Pro with M3 Pro/Max
  2. Apple introduces a reasonable 27" 5K monitor (or at least fixes the ludicrous pricing of their existing 27" SD + decent stand @ $1999 even with standard glossy finish)
  3. There’s more competition in the 5K/6K monitor space, essentially bringing more choice to what is now basically a two-horse race between Apple SD (ludicrously priced) and the Samsung S9 (plastic, questionable “Smart TV Apps” and “Gaming Hub” malarkey)

For the budget crowd who needs a larger monitor than 24", there’s the Mac mini plus 27" 4K (this Dell is great and is just $503). For the higher end crowd a Mac Studio will do fine, but the 5K monitor issue remains unsolved. Apple has a nice product, but with a decent stand and matte finish, you’re looking at $2300 for just the display and that IMHO is just highway robbery. The Samsung S9 is substantially cheaper, but it has clear deficiencies that some will find hard to swallow. Obviously, YMMV.

Does anyone have recommendations on a monitor to go with a Mac mini or Mac Studio that has a webcam and microphone built in for FaceTime? Or do I use my current iPhone Pro in Continuity Camera mode with a mount with any monitor I choose? (I do not need the $1599 Studio Display.)

So what HIGH QUALITY brand ≥27" monitor should people look at for a maximum of $400? I’ve never bought anything other than an Apple monitor (for my Apple IIc, Mac LC, Mac Quadra 605) before the iMac came out. It has been iMacs ever since: iMac Rev B 15" Oct 1998, iMac G4 15" Jan 2002, iMac G5 20" ALS Jan 2006, and iMac Intel i5 21.5" May 2012.

The door is wide open for a 24 inch iMac with a pro level processor in space black. That would appeal to me. I have been a 2 monitor user for a long time. Some times my second monitor has been larger, other times the iMac is largest.

I’ve been happy with a pair of LG HDR 4K 27" displays. They have USB-C/HDMI/DisplayPort inputs. (Model 27UL850-W). I am using a Mac Studio Pro M2 Max via USB-C/Thunderbolt cable. I can have my older MacMini connected (via HDMI) in a pinch for legacy access, as well as my PC via DisplayPort on other. If you need a webcam, I use a Logitech Brio as needed (Zoom/Facetime/Teams via USB-C). Speakers are builtin but I use headset via CalDigit TS4 hub. Its not as clean a setup as a simple 27" iMac but it has tilt/raise/lower on the stands and can do VESA mount for custom use. its an IPS display and res/color has been fine more web design/photoshop work I do.

It’s a quandary.

To replace my 27" iMac, I can either pay $$$$ more for pretty much the same monitor plus a Mini, or downgrade to a lesser monitor (plus Mini), which would be my first upgrade downgrade in 32 years of Apple computing.

I do want Apple Silicon. And, eventually, software, OS, and/or feature yearning will demand it. But it’s not like I’m in pain. Every Mac since 2018 has had more than enough muscle for anyone not doing tons of rendering/compiling. It’s the quietest truth in the computer biz: the curve of declining results, a few years ago, reached a point where additional processor speed isn’t noticeable for 90% of users, including me.

I bought this system, refurb, in 2019, thrilled to get a steal on a great monitor with a Mac thrown in for free. It’s still a steal. Nothing close to matching the value. Monitor’s great, Mac with more than enough muscle (though, yeah, I’d have liked Apple Silicon future-proofing). And with all upgrade paths either obscenely expensive or compromised, guess I’ll drive this one till it drops…

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If it absolutely has to be below $400 and you want 4K this is something you can consider. I’m not a huge fan of the S series, but it is inexpensive while it’s got an IPS panel and LED backlighting. $240.

If $503 is still OK to you, this Dell here is an excellent monitor.

If it has to be below $400, this Dell is still a decent monitor, it’s just 2560x1440. But it’s $339.

I’m on a fixed income so I spec’d out a current Mac Mini that was close to my current iMac: 20GB RAM, 1TB hard drive, 4 USB, 1 FireWire, 1 Thunderbolt, 1 3.5mm audio in, and 1 3.5mm audio out ports, an SD card slot, and an optical drive. Since I need to connect at least 4 USB peripherals (laser printer, scanner, optical drive, SD card reader) plus at least 2 external hard drives (via FireWire to Thunderbolt?, USB?), I figure the M2 Mini with 24GB RAM and 1TB SSD at $1400, and a monitor at $400 plus tax will come in just under $2000. Of course I’ll have to also get a powered USB 6-8 port hub, but I hope to keep the cost down as much as possible. I see that LG, Samsung, and Dell tend to rank the highest in PC monitor tests, so I’ll probably concentrate on those brands. I remember LG when it was Goldstar 52 years ago; I bought a Goldstar fan when I was stationed in Korea.

First off, is there a problem using a separate webcam? On my Mac mini, I’m using a (pretty old) 720p Logitech USB web camera. Nothing to write home about but works great for FaceTime and Zoom calls.

That having been said, I know Dell makes a few displays with integrated speakers, microphone and camera. I have one, a Dell UZ2315H, sold in 2016 as “made for Microsoft Teams”. Ironically, I had (and still have) no use for its camera, since I use it with a laptop that already has a good camera. But when I bought it, it was the best price for a good quality 24" display.

Looking at Dell’s web site today, I see 7 displays with integrated webcams, speakers and microphones, ranging in price from $250 up to $2400. Definitely worth reviewing the specs and reading some reviews.

I’ve always been partial to Dell displays. Note, however, that at that price point, you won’t be getting 5K resolution.

The link I shared above (displays with webcams) has two 27" displays under $400. Both are 1440p (2560x1440) resolution. One (the $250 model) at up to 75 Hz. The other (the $400 model) at up to 60 Hz.

If I do a search for 25-34" and under $400, I get 32 hits. If I then narrow it further to 4K resolution (3840x2160), there are 4 results, any of which I think would work well (note, however, that they don’t all offer the same feature sets).

  • S321QS ($320)
    • 32" curved display (VA panel, 4K at 60 Hz)
    • Stereo speakers
    • Ports:
      • 2x HDMI, DisplayPort 1.2
      • Audio line-out
      • USB 3.0 type-B (upstream)
      • 2x USB 3.0 type-A (downstream), 1 with Battery-charging 1.2
  • S2721QS ($240)
    • 27" flat display (IPS panel, 4K at 60 Hz)
    • Stereo speakes
    • Ports:
      • HDMI, DisplayPort 1.2
      • Audio line-out
  • S2722QC ($280)
    • 27" flat display (IPS panel, 4K at 60 Hz)
    • Stereo speakers
    • Ports:
      • 2x HDMI
      • USB type C (upstream), with DisplayPort 1.4 alt mode, power delivery up to 65W
      • 2x USB 3.2 Gen 1 type-A (downstream), 1 with Battery-charging 1.2
      • Audio line-out
  • SE3223Q ($250)
    • 32" flat display (VA panel, 4K at 60 Hz)
    • No speakers
    • Ports:
      • 2x HDMI, DisplayPort 1.2
      • Audio line-out

If I had to choose one of these, I’d probably select the S2722QC, since it’s an IPS panel, has USB-C video input and has integrated speakers.

Does anybody know if the 24” iMac outsold the 24”? Apart from personal use, I saw the 27” in use at points of sale, in offices, design studios, and in workplaces. The all-in-one design lent itself to corporate use. No matter what Apple says, the screen of 24” iMac is just too small for a range of office work.

I have Studio Displays for photography and video work and zoom sessions. It is fine but nothing particularly special apart from its overblown price.

Apple continues to make strange business decisions and this is another one. Do Apple executives get out in the real world?

What’s the rationale for this decision? They want people to pony up for a Mac Mini or Mac Studio and a Studio Display?

That seems to be consistent with the Macalope‘s observation:

What is interesting to this fuzzy observer is how the Mac mini has slid into the position of importance formerly held by the iMac.

Back in the day when kids used to still say things like “Back in the day…”, the iMac was the consumer machine and the Mac mini was for switchers. You’ve got that keyboard, mouse and monitor you used for your Dell Uninspiron, just get a new CPU. A better CPU. But the Mac mini has evolved into the desktop computer for anyone. Ranging in price from $599 to $4,499, it’s capable of satisfying a wide range of needs. Consumers can get the low end while developers who don’t want to spring for a Mac Studio can get a lot of value out of the top end. And when paired with a monitor not made by Apple, it’s not going to break the bank.


“Greed is GOOD” (to paraphrase Gordon Gekko)

Apple used to say they made computers “For the Rest of Us”. Apparently, they no longer want them but rather those who can pay out the nose. I noticed this seems to started a little over a decade ago.