24-Inch M1 iMac Review Roundup: Impressive, But Not for Pros

M1 iMac benchmark results

Ahead of the M1 iMac launch later this week, the first set of reviews of the machine are out. Just like other M1-based Macs, the 24-inch iMac also offers excellent performance while barely making any noise even when pushed hard. Check out our review roundup of the M1 iMac to see what major publications and YouTubers are saying about it.

Compared to the 21-inch Intel-based iMac, the new 24-inch iMac brings about a major leap in performance. The bigger display is also a welcome addition, with the slimmer design giving the machine a more modern look and feel.

What’s interesting is that Apple is also offering a new unboxing experience with the M1 iMacs. It uses the “Hello” tagline of the machine inside the packaging, which is a nice touch.

24-inch iMac Review Roundup

The Verge

The review rightly highlights some of the limitations of the 24-inch iMac, which makes it a no-go for power users. Firstly, it cannot be configured with more than 16GB RAM and 2TB storage. The machine also only supports one external display. There’s also a limited number of ports meaning connecting external devices could be frustrating.

However, for regular users, there’s no other Mac that’s better than the 24-inch iMac.

More anecdotally, I was able to use my test unit for all kinds of daily tasks, from emailing to YouTube to amateur photo and video work. I was able to hop between over 25 Chrome tabs with Cinebench looping in the background, with no stutter or slowdown whatsoever. If you’re buying the iMac for this kind of thing, I can’t imagine you’ll see too many spinning wheels.

M1 iMac The Verge

Impressively, the M1 chip barely gets hot, and it is actually quite a task to get the fan inside the machine to spin up. And even when they do, they are not audible at all. The new microphone speaker system on the new iMac is also very impressive. The 1080p FaceTime HD camera at the front is also finally good, so you will not look terrible in your Zoom video calls anymore.

The six-speaker sound system is easily on par with a good external speaker. I played some music in my kitchen, and it was audible all over the house. Percussion and bass were strong, and I felt very immersed in the songs. It also supports spatial audio when playing video with Dolby Atmos.

Review

Engadget

Just like other M1-based Macs like the MacBook Air and MacBook Pro, the M1 iMac is fast where it counts. It wakes up instantly from sleep, can boot to desktop in less than 30 seconds, and opens apps in a click. As for the 24-inch display, it is one of the highlights of the new iMac and delivers on all fronts.

While the slim new design and powerful processor are nice, the iMac’s stunning 23.5-inch, 4.5K Retina Display is its true centerpiece. It covers the full DCI-P3 gamut, which means it can display over a billion colors. Take that together with a surprisingly high 500 nits of brightness — more than many gaming laptops — and the iMac’s screen can make just about anything pop. It’s one of those displays that makes high-resolution photos feel three-dimensional. Video also looks fantastic, especially if you’re watching something with a huge color palette.

The M1 iMac is not perfect, though. The lack of ports could definitely be a major problem for many. This also means that be prepared to use dongles if you plan to connect a lot of external devices to your M1 iMac.

The $1,299 entry-level model only comes with two USB-C ports — to get four, you’ll have to step up to the $1,499 model with a more powerful 8-core GPU. That pricier model also has an Ethernet port embedded in its power brick, which the cheaper iMac lacks. I realize Apple held off on removing USB Type A ports on the iMacs for a while, but I still miss them. Now your only choice is to clutter your desk with dongles and USB hubs if you want to connect older devices. The same is true if you want to use SD cards, which irks me to no end.

Review

Check out some YouTube videos on the new 24-inch iMac below:


What do you think about the M1 iMac based on the above reviews? Drop a comment and let us know!