When choosing a desktop, many consumers often focus on the many different types of PCs on the market, and there are a lot of them. Nearly every computer maker has a line of desktops they produce targeted at different markets. Even Apple has their own line of desktops. While they do produce a more traditional desktop, their main desktop line is the iMac. Many consumers are often confused by these devices and what they can do. Often they ask themselves if they should buy an iMac or get a PC desktop or even one of the Pro series of Apple.
Today, let’s take a look at a few great reasons to buy an iMac and discuss what it can, and cannot do. That way if you are considering on an Apple iMac for your next desktop, you will know what you are getting before it arrives in your home.
All In One Design
One of the biggest benefits of the iMac is its all in one design. This design has been around since the iMac was first released almost two decades ago. While the basic design has changed a little over the years, it has always incorporated an all in one design that was, in many ways, ahead of its time. Today is no different, and many would argue that Apple’s iMac design has led to the creation of many all in one PCs today.
The design itself is sleek and stylish, something we have all come to expect from Apple. Let’s face it, they never release anything that looks ugly. At the same time, this design can also be limiting. In the end, you have limited space for extras and other things like fancy video cards. While the iMac does include some strong video card options, they are really more mobile card related than true desktop. That means your gaming experience won’t be as great on these devices, although many of them will do it.
Under the hood, many of the iMacs sport some of the fastest processors from Intel, so you shouldn’t have any issue when it comes to speed, even if gaming is a bit of an issue. Still, if you are using it for more basic usage such as word processing, some of the processors you can get in the bigger screen options are really overkill. This assumes you aren’t doing anything fancy. However, if you are running apps like Photoshop then the faster processors are a huge benefit.
The iMacs today give you two size options, a 21.5-inch and a 27-inch model. The smaller screened iMac features a 4K display while the larger iMac includes a 5K display. These are truly some of the most high end and beautiful displays available today. No matter which model you choose, you will end up with a screen that is very high res with gorgeous colors. This is especially great for people who love to watch movies or have to edit videos or photos. It’s even good for gamers, assuming the game isn’t too much for the computer to handle.
Now, in the past, Apple also offered a 24-inch model. Personally, I would prefer that size over the other two. Sometimes, at least in my opinion, the 21.5-inch screen just isn’t quite big enough, but the 27-inch can be a little too big for some people. However, you still have two great options. You just have to decide what size will work best in your workspace and for your needs with your computer. Just remember the 27-inch model will also cost you more.
This has always been an issue with Mac products, and especially the iMac line. In many ways, an iMac is more like a really large laptop than it is a desktop. Sure, there is room in there for more RAM and maybe even a new hard drive, but it’s not like you will be able to drop in a higher end video card if you want to upgrade your graphics capability.
In fact, there is very little room at all for expandability, outside of external devices using your USB ports. Sure, you can add a lot of those if you want, but the idea of saving space is kind of thrown out the window when you do that. If you still love the iMac, just remember that your upgrade options will be somewhat limited compared to a traditional desktop. In the end, that may be okay, but it does mean that you won’t be able to get as many years out of it before you need something new. After all, even Apple hardware won’t last forever.
Keyboard and Mouse
The iMac comes with Apple’s leading, high quality Bluetooth keyboard and the Magic Mouse 2 or the Magic Trackpad 2. The Magic Trackpad 2 is one of the best trackpads out there, with multi-touch and Force Touch support. If you prefer a trackpad for desktop interaction, this is hands down the very best option on the market today. The Magic Mouse 2 is no slouch either, although its slim design can hurt your hand over long periods of time.
The Bluetooth keyboard is one of the best out there, and it feels great to type with this keyboard. However, this wireless keyboard does not include a numeric keyboard. That means that you have to look at other options for your keyboard input if you need the numeric keypad.
All in all the input devices are state of the art and a real pleasure to use, however they aren’t for everyone. You may have to look at other keyboards and mice options if these don’t suit you or if you find you need something more. I would encourage you to try the devices that come with the iMac first before you buy something else. If they don’t work, there are tons of third party keyboards and mice out there that will work on your iMac.
If you have never experienced Mac OS X before, I suggest you at least go to an Apple Store and give it a try. Mac OS X got its start in the world of FreeBSD. Using that platform, Steve Jobs built something called Next. This platform was then purchased by Apple back when Steve Jobs was brought back into the company and it then back Mac OS X, better known today as macOS. The Unix-like operating system is one of the most secure on the planet, and with the interface and technology that Apple has built on top of it, it is one of the sleekest and easiest experiences you will ever encounter.
It is also powerful. If you want to dig into it, you can do some amazing things with the Terminal. However, its real power is in its simplicity. In just a few short minutes you should be able to navigate everything you need for a standard user experience, without ever having to touch anything complicated. If you want an OS that just works, without any complicated issues, then purchasing an iMac is a great way to get it.
Seamless Compatibility with Other Apple Devices
Do you have an iPhone, iPad, or maybe an Apple Watch? Did you know that the compatibility between Apple computers and these devices is seamless. You can push your messages to your Mac, for example, and easily sync your devices wirelessly if you use an Apple iMac or any other Apple computer for that matter.
If you want things to just work for you, and you already own an iPad or an iPhone, it makes a lot of sense to go with an iMac or different Apple machine for your computer of choice. By doing so you will create a seamless experience across all your devices. There is something to be said about simplicity, and adopting all of the Apple products will do just that.
Windows on Your iMac
With Bootcamp, you can install Microsoft Windows onto your iMac. This opens up a world of possibilities allowing you to run the very best that both platforms offer on one computer. Sure you have to reboot to go back and forth, but you will be able run Windows natively. This means that you can run any app that you can’t find for Mac OS X with relative ease. Just don’t expect them to run side by side. For that, you will need to run a virtualization option.
Third Party Apps
If you are worried about app compatibility, have no fear. There are tons of apps available for your iMac. Most of the leading third party apps are available for Mac OS X as well. For example, you can buy Microsoft Office for the Mac and, of course, the Adobe Creative Suite. There are also tons of free apps available for the platform as well. Because Mac OS X is built upon a Unix-based operating system, many of the apps you will find for Linux and BSD also have Mac OS X builds.
What you won’t find as much of is games. Not all game makers create ports that are Mac OS X compatible. Some do, but often they are released after the game has been out for a few months. In this case, I would recommend using Bootcamp and installing Windows on your iMac to gain access to this software.
Is an iMac right for you? Only you can answer that question. However, I think after reading this you will probably have a good idea. The iMac from Apple is one of the most beautiful and powerful computers on the market today. While it is a little more expensive than other options, I think many believe that in the end it is worth it. Just remember, like anything, there are limitations. Go through this list in detail before you make your final decision. It can help you weed through all the often complicated details of purchasing even a Mac computer so you can make the right decision in your next purchase.