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21.5-inch Apple iMac 2012 cannot be upgraded


21.5-inch Apple iMac 2012 cannot be upgraded

The forthcoming 21.5-inch Apple iMac all-in-one will not be user upgradeable, according to reports.

Softpedia says that the new iMac’s design and construction (apparently the RAM is soldered to the logic board) means that users have no choice but to stick with the amount of memory they select when purchasing the desktop. There is a choice of either 8GB or 16GB.

Previous iMac models have been upgradeable, at least when it comes to RAM. Users can unscrew a small panel, slide out the sticks of memory and replace them with faster modules.

Because buying RAM from a third-party retailer is far cheaper than paying Apple’s prices, this has been an understandably popular feature. Happily, it continues with the larger of the new Apple iMacs: the 27-inch model can be configured with 8GB, 16GB or 32GB of RAM at purchase, or user upgraded later.

Apple has been moving towards non user-upgradeable products recently, beginning with the MacBook Air and continuing with the 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina Display (and most likely the 13-inch model also announced this week). So if you’re someone who values the ability to add some extra zip to your computer later in its lifetime, your choices for a Mac are becoming a little more limited than they used to be.

The new Apple iMac models will be available in the UK in December. Prices are yet to be confirmed.

Are you surprised or angry about the 21.5-inch iMac’s lack of upgradeability? Let us know your thoughts in the comments box below.

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October 25, 2012, 12:50 pm

Are you sure they could "slide out the sticks of memory and replace them with faster modules", or just increase the amount of installed memory?
I had never realised you could upgrade to faster memory modules in any machine, or is this magic iRAM?


October 25, 2012, 2:24 pm

Sadly, I don't find this particularly surprising but I am not a fan of such moves. Of these "lock in" moves of late, the one I am most concerned about, however, is the move towards OS updates ONLY online. In theory, within 1 more generation Apple will have total control over its OS, software, apps & content ecosystem. While this might make it easier for Apple to create seamless, smooth-running software & content, it will create a stranglehold on all 3rd parties and ultimately stifle innovation, creativity and hacking/hackintosh-type activities. Give me a Linux model anyday - though ideally with some Apple polish....

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