Apple's iMac with Retina 5K display is big, beautiful and full of pixels | Cult of Mac

Apple’s iMac with Retina 5K display is big, beautiful and full of pixels


Photo: Apple
Photo: Apple

Apple finally unveiled its iMac with Retina 5K display this morning, and while the screen is bigger, brighter and more hi-deffer than ever, Apple still managed to make an incredible machine that’s gorgeous and affordable.

It’s the most incredible iMac Apple’s ever built, thanks to a Retina 5K display that puts high-end 4K displays to shame and upgraded processors and graphics in a package that’s just 5mm thin.

Think your desktop is ready for a Retina upgrade? Here’s what you need to know about Apple’s new desktop beast:

The display

The iMac’s Retina 5K display is the most breathtaking field of 14.7 million pixels your eyes have ever seen. Apple touts the iMac for having the world’s highest-resolution display, which makes all your pics, videos and texts sharper than ever.

Its 5,120 by 2,880 resolution packs four times as many pixels as the previous 27-inch iMac, and 67 percent more pixels than a 4K TV, but it’s also 30 percent more energy-efficient.

To power the unfathomable number of pixels behind the 5K display, Apple had to invent a timing controller chip to go with the energy-efficient LEDs. The new iMac utilizes an oxide TFT-based panel to deliver brighter images and contrast ratios. Apple also used a new photo-alignment process and compensation film to display darker blacks and brighter colors.

The horsepower

Inside the Retina iMac you’ll find a new 3.5GHz quad-core Intel Core i5 processor that can Turbo Boost up to 3.9GHz, or you can upgrade to the 4 GHz Intel i7 CPU. The graphics have been bumped up to AMD’s Radeon R9 M290x card that delivers 3.5 teraflops of computing power, and Wi-Fi is now on the faster 802.11ac standard with a top speed of 1.3 Gbps.

The new iMac comes standard with 8GB of RAM with the option to install up to 32GB. It also packs a 1TB Fusion Drive that can be upgraded to 3TB, and it’s the first iMac to get Thunderbolt 2 ports, which are twice as fast as Thunderbolt 1.

The price


The baseline model starts out at $2,499. That’s a steal considering that most 4K TVs cost more than that alone, plus you’re slapping a powerful computer onto the monster display. If you want to spec your new iMac out with a 4.0GHz quad-core Intel Core i7, 32GB of RAM, 1TB Flash Drive and AMD Radeon R9 M295X 4GB GDDR5 graphics it will cost you about $4,399.00.


Daily round-ups or a weekly refresher, straight from Cult of Mac to your inbox.

  • The Weekender

    The week's best Apple news, reviews and how-tos from Cult of Mac, every Saturday morning. Our readers say: "Thank you guys for always posting cool stuff" -- Vaughn Nevins. "Very informative" -- Kenly Xavier.