Exclusive: Apple is planning to launch a 27″ 5K iMac with AMD Graphics

There’s been a rumour that Apple might be planning a Retina iMac for quite some time now, today I am able to confirm that report with some disappointment.

A source familiar with Apple’s plans tells me that Apple is indeed planning to launch a Retina iMac at their next press event, however the 27″ Model will be the only model that gets this feature. The source says the new 27″ iMac will use a 5120 x 2880 panel as leaked in the OSX Yosemite code a few months ago. This resolution is quadruple the current resolution of the 27″ iMac which is 2560×1440.

The source says the iMac will keep exactly the same design/dimensions as its predecessors and won’t have USB Type-C port that they told me the 12″ Macbook Air will include, the only difference is the display panel and the processor.

The source says the new iMac’s top processor configuration will be the Intel i7-4790K which has a base clock speed of 4.0GHz, the source also mentioned that Broadwell CPU’s will “likely be added in an update next year” but Apple is sticking with Haswell for now as powerful Broadwell processors are not available to the market.

The source also said the new product will include AMD graphics like the Late 2013 Mac Pro, the current iMacs use Nvidia GPU’s.

The source is almost 100% sure the 21.5″ model will not get a Retina display and will keep at 1920×1080, it will also keep the same design like the new 27″ iMac. The source says that its likely that the 21.5″ model will get a Retina display when powerful Broadwell processors start shipping.

The source says that Apple is “incredibly likely” to announce the product at their next press event.

Please follow me on Twitter (@JackGMarch) to keep up to date with my reports.

UPDATE: Let’s just say I’m not too confident there won’t be a 21.5″ Retina iMac anymore, Mark Gurman and John Paczkowski (both very reliable) have both used the word “iMacs” signalling a 21.5″ Retina is in the works too, so that’s two against one.

  • Supacon

    Why would Apple update the iMac now, months before suitable Broadwell processors hit the market? Also, doesn’t this require Thunderbolt 3, which requires Skylake chipsets (surely which won’t be out until more than a year from now)? No doubt if you’d want to connect external 5K monitors to it, you’d require that, at least.

    Maybe one reason is just to put awareness of such products into the public consciousness so that developers and users become accustomed to 5K displays and develop an infrastructure for it. The technology surely can’t be fully baked at this point. If they *do* have a 5K retina iMac for sale this year, I think it’d be prudent to pass on it and get a more polished version after a new refresh is for sale.

    • Jack March

      My source is very sure it will be unveiled next month or next press event with this resolution, that’s all I know.

      • Supacon

        Well, it will surely be an exciting next few months for Apple fans!

  • bregalad

    The 4790K does not have Intel vPro technology nor is it listed as “conflict free”. It also draws 88W instead of the usual iMac maximum of 84W and costs more than the chip it replaces. For those reasons I suspect Apple will use the regular 4790.

  • Shameer Mulji

    I guess the next question is when in October? The Dalrymple, over at The Loop, has “noped” October 21st, so that basically leaves the 14th or 28th.

  • Tallin

    “The source says the new 27″ iMac will use a 5120 x 2880 panel as leaked in the OSX Yosemite code a few months ago. This resolution is double the current resolution of the 27″ iMac which is 2560×1440.” Math much?

  • Dustin Damron

    No mention of Thunderbolt 2 support. Maybe it’s a given. Crossing my fingers on that one.

  • Jose Angel Acosta

    Despite *pixel doubling* Upcoming iMac Retina will go upto 4K/27″ (doubling HD) on i7/4771 + nVidia 970M/980M Same Price point, Doubt on iMac21.5 to go retina until Tech is Ready for 5K (Intel Skylake + Next Gen dGPU)

    • Jose Angel Acosta

      Only 5K enabled device will be the Mac Pro (update) thru HDMI2 and using an 3rd Party Display (sold at Apple Mac Store)

    • Jack March

      So, what was this about no 5k?