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Apple's next iMacs also rumored to receive Retina display upgrade

post #1 of 82
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In addition to the MacBook Pro lineup, Apple's next-generation iMac desktops are also rumored to receive a new high-resolution Retina display.

Following up on earlier reports that Apple would unveil thinner Retina display-equipped MacBook Pros at the forthcoming Worldwide Developers Conference in June, Joanna Stern of ABC News corroborated those details, but also included the iMac in the mix. Along with the MacBook Pro, the iMac will get a new, "very, very high resolution" display, she said.

The detail comes on the heels of benchmark tests that appeared online for a new iMac model, identified as "13,2." The desktop tested with Geekbench featured a quad-core i7 chip at a clock speed of 3.40 gigahertz running OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion, and earned a score of 12,183.

One report in April claimed that Apple's 2012 iMac lineup will feature anti-reflective glass displays. It was also said that the new iMacs will be noticeably slimmer than the current all-in-one desktop models offered by Apple.

The latest rumor of high-resolution iMacs suggests that Apple plans to quickly upgrade much of its Mac lineup to new Retina displays, catching up with the high pixel density screens currently found on the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. Earlier this month, AppleInsider discovered new Retina-caliber icons hidden within Apple's latest OS X 10.7.4 update to Lion.

Patent 2


An earlier report in April previously indicated that Apple was eyeing a June launch for new iMacs featuring Intel's latest-generation Ivy Bridge processors. It was said the new iMacs would feature options for Core i5 or faster Core i7 processors based on the latest chip architecture.

The iMac lineup was last updated in May of 2011, when Apple added high-definition FaceTime cameras as well as high-speed Thunderbolt ports. The current iMacs are powered by Intel's Sandy Bridge processors and AMD Radeon HD graphics.
post #2 of 82

Anyone with thoughts on whether Apple displays might get a bump up as well?

post #3 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post

Anyone with thoughts on whether Apple displays might get a bump up as well?


Naturally lol.gif

 

I'd like to add that the DPI for a large display would be much smaller than what's in iPhone/iPad because our eye will be placed further out. I am curious how high the density need to be. Will 150 DPI be good enough?


Edited by jj.yuan - 5/15/12 at 9:23am
post #4 of 82

No one on Earth makes 27" 5120x2880 display. The iMacs cannot get retina displays this upgrade time. It's just not possible.

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post #5 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

No one on Earth makes 27" 5120x2880 display. The iMacs cannot get retina displays this upgrade time. It's just not possible.

I agree. I also don't know of any mainstream graphics chips that will handle that resolution. Rumormongers ought to at least check on whether something is plausible.


ETA:
I may have been wrong about the graphics chips. Modern chips are getting close to being able to handle that resolution:
http://hexus.net/tech/reviews/graphics/37253-three-screen-geforce-gtx-680-vs-radeon-hd-7970/
This is a three screen setup at 5760x1080. Not quite what TS was referring to, but it's closer than I thought - and suggests that it just might be possible with a high end video card.


They will, however, have to come up with some new initials for a screen that size:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Graphic_display_resolutions
Edited by jragosta - 5/15/12 at 9:41am
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post #6 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

No one on Earth makes 27" 5120x2880 display. The iMacs cannot get retina displays this upgrade time. It's just not possible.

 

The article didn't state the resolution would be exactly double to what it is now, and I don't think it will. In fact there was an article linked to from Macrumors earlier about the possibility of a retina display iMac and suggested:
 Apple could build a 3840 by 2400 pixel 27-inch screen that presented itself as a pixel doubled 1920 by 1200 pixel display. That’s effectively an 84ppi screen @1X and 168ppi screen @2X.

Makes a lot of sense to me!

post #7 of 82

Seriously... What is the point in this? I can appreciate it would possibly be useful for laptops, but desktop machines?

 

Very dubious.

post #8 of 82

I agree. This sort of move would be a 'bridge too far'--maybe two bridges too far. The cost would be too high for a mainstream product. If Apple makes a move like this, it's likely to come first in a high-end, standalone display.

 

Laptops are another matter. I'm so delighted by the screen on my new iPad. I'm delaying getting a MBA at least until it gets a retina display.

post #9 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

No one on Earth makes 27" 5120x2880 display. The iMacs cannot get retina displays this upgrade time. It's just not possible.

 

It doesn't have to be double the current resolution.

 

Desktop OS X is not like iOS, it can support multiple resolutions without problem (actualy it already does, from the 11" Air to thw 27" iMac). 

 

They just have to increase the resolution to approach something like 300dpi. (It could even be less DPI, say, 280 or so, since the viewing distance to a 27" display for example is bigger than to an iPhone), and show normal assets with double the pixels and optimized assets with double the pixels + double the detail.

post #10 of 82

Notably thinner = No optical drive.

post #11 of 82

To be clear: not that iOS cannot support multiple resolutions, just that it is problematic to do so without doubling them, because then you have inconsistent interface elements, or things get smaller than the optimal size for a finger (whereas a mouse pointer can easily click on a huge desktop OS X button in 90dpi to a small-ish version on the same button in 160dpi).

post #12 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by foljs View Post
It doesn't have to be double the current resolution.

 

Sure it does.

 

Quote:

They just have to increase the resolution to approach something like 300dpi. (It could even be less DPI, say, 280 or so, since the viewing distance to a 27" display for example is bigger than to an iPhone), and show normal assets with double the pixels and optimized assets with double the pixels + double the detail.

 

Which, if you do the calculation, is the resolution that I said and which no company makes.

 

Edit: I was wrong. That was for a 22" display. 5120x2880 on a 27" display is 217 PPI.

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post #13 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by kfury77 View Post

 

The article didn't state the resolution would be exactly double to what it is now, and I don't think it will. In fact there was an article linked to from Macrumors earlier about the possibility of a retina display iMac and suggested:
 Apple could build a 3840 by 2400 pixel 27-inch screen that presented itself as a pixel doubled 1920 by 1200 pixel display. That’s effectively an 84ppi screen @1X and 168ppi screen @2X.

Makes a lot of sense to me!

 

Then it'll fit less stuff on its display. It'll be a step up in legibility, but a step down in usability.

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jowie74 View Post

Seriously... What is the point in this? I can appreciate it would possibly be useful for laptops, but desktop machines?

 

Very dubious.

 

Well, I agree it's dubious, but why is it useful for laptops and not desktops? Do you think the resolution on desktops is high enough? The text looks crystal clear to you? Mine sure doesn't.

post #14 of 82

Considering the huge amount of power consumption associated with pixel-dense displays, as was evident in the new iPad, it would be unlikely to see thinner or lighter MacBook Airs with high pixel density. It would be more plausible to see high pixel density displays in iMacs and Apple Displays.

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post #15 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gustav View Post

Well, I agree it's dubious, but why is it useful for laptops and not desktops? Do you think the resolution on desktops is high enough? The text looks crystal clear to you? Mine sure doesn't.

 
For all the reasons mentioned. What is Retina on a desktop machine? Has anyone calculated? And if it works out to something like 200 dpi then most people will lose screen real estate, albeit gaining crisper text.
 
Also graphics cards... We want cooler games and smoother graphics. If the 3G iPad is anything to go by, we're going to see a decrease in graphics performance in the first generation Retina iMacs. Not a great idea!
post #16 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by bloggerblog View Post

Considering the huge amount of power consumption associated with pixel-dense displays, as was evident in the new iPad, it would be unlikely to see thinner or lighter MacBook Airs with high pixel density. It would be more plausible to see high pixel density displays in iMacs and Apple Displays.

 

Hi DPI sounds like something that would be perfect for the MBP really.  If they keep the MBA on dual cores with the current res screens and SSD only, then the MBP has quad core processors, higher res screens and SSD+HDD, then you have some serious product differentiation going on.

post #17 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by SSquirrel View Post

 

Hi DPI sounds like something that would be perfect for the MBP really.  If they keep the MBA on dual cores with the current res screens and SSD only, then the MBP has quad core processors, higher res screens and SSD+HDD, then you have some serious product differentiation going on.

The display and required graphic power will drain the battery in half the time. So instead of getting 7 hrs of battery in a MBP, it'll be more like 3.5 hrs.

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post #18 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by kfury77 View Post

 

The article didn't state the resolution would be exactly double to what it is now, and I don't think it will. In fact there was an article linked to from Macrumors earlier about the possibility of a retina display iMac and suggested:
 Apple could build a 3840 by 2400 pixel 27-inch screen that presented itself as a pixel doubled 1920 by 1200 pixel display. That’s effectively an 84ppi screen @1X and 168ppi screen @2X.

Makes a lot of sense to me!

Makes sense to me too, there are 3840 x 2400 panels already in existence. I would run it in 1920x1200@2X because my eyesight is not very good, but some people I know would run it in 3840 x 2400 and be very happy.

post #19 of 82
Quote:

Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

 

Which, if you do the calculation, is the resolution that I said and which no company makes.

 

Edit: I was wrong. That was for a 22" display. 5120x2880 on a 27" display is 217 PPI.

 

I'm as dubious about the GPU capabilities required to drive this as much as I am the screen.  Apple don't have a track record of putting the latest and greatest GPU's in any of it's hardware, and supporting resolutions that high would need them to.

 

The whole thing seems highly unlikely.

post #20 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

Sure it does.
Quote:
They just have to increase the resolution to approach something like 300dpi. (It could even be less DPI, say, 280 or so, since the viewing distance to a 27" display for example is bigger than to an iPhone), and show normal assets with double the pixels and optimized assets with double the pixels + double the detail.

Which, if you do the calculation, is the resolution that I said and which no company makes.

Edit: I was wrong. That was for a 22" display. 5120x2880 on a 27" display is 217 PPI.

The PPI in and of itself has no barring on if it's a Retina Display or not. You have to also include the distance the eyes are from the display.

Here is a chart that shows that the larger the display the closer we have been to having Retina quality displays.

300

As you say, there are no tech that can feasibly double the current iMac displays which is why it will be a double of the smaller resolution noted already. This means that the elements on the screen will be slightly larger because they will have a 1x PPI that is smaller (even though it's unbelievably more crisp). Personally I prefer that which is why I never bought a HiRes MBP in the past as it just made the elements too small for my liking.

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post #21 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post

Anyone with thoughts on whether Apple displays might get a bump up as well?

They will. At some point. Higher res, better color handling, new sizes, hdmi input. It is all likely to happen. Eventually

Will any of this happen at WWDC or even this year. Who knows. Personally on WWDC I say no. The keynote will be about software with maybe a scant mention of any hardware, details and release being silent and maybe that same week

Will it be some 300+ dpi level upgrade. Probably not since Apple is focusing their definition on the effect, not the dpi. With these screens something like 250 dpi might fit their math.

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post #22 of 82

Yes, I would really like a desktop Retina display! I certainly don't have a need for a 27" monitor but if they made a 20" monitor I would be fine with that. The only problem with having it on a separate monitor is that Apple still doesn't have a decent monitor less computer to go with it. The dated MacPro and underpowered Mini are not all that enticing to me.

post #23 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by charlituna View Post

Will it be some 300+ dpi level upgrade. Probably not since Apple is focusing their definition on the effect, not the dpi. With these screens something like 250 dpi might fit their math.

For the 27" display 168 PPI is more than enough to be considered Retina.

I don't get your "focusing" comment. The only way the definition has ever worked is when you consider both PPI and the distance. You can't define it by a single metric.



edit: The equation is: 3438 * (1/n) = where n can be the PPI which will figure out the minimum distance it was to be from your eyes to be Retina or n can be inches which will tell you the minimum PPI that will be needed. Equation based on 20/20 (6/6) vision.

For the 27" iMac that represents elements at 84 PPI (1920x1200) but is actually 168 PPI (3840x2400) one would have to sit closer than (3438 * 1/168 =) 20.5" for it to not be Retina quality. If a viewing distance of 28" is typical for a 27" display then that is well within the range.
Edited by SolipsismX - 5/15/12 at 9:10am

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post #24 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

No one on Earth makes 27" 5120x2880 display.

No one has announced they are or announced components for such a thing

But Apple being Apple, it is not impossible for them to have bought up all the pieces for such an item for the next five years under a contract of total secrecy, any leaks resulting in massive fines etc.

And who knows how they will roll this out. Perhaps this year the retina display will only be in the top of the line custom ordered models. So basically an option for the 27 inch highest model, the 15 inch and 17 inch high end models. Then the cinema displays (which will incle inputs to use with your Apple TV box), then roll down into the rest of the lineup over the next year or two.

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post #25 of 82
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Originally Posted by PaulMJohnson View Post
I'm as dubious about the GPU capabilities required to drive this as much as I am the screen.  Apple don't have a track record of putting the latest and greatest GPU's in any of it's hardware, and supporting resolutions that high would need them to.

 

The graphics probably can't handle it on either the desktops or laptops… and the laptops will destroy their battery life!

 

We're JUST getting rid of the optical drive right now to make room for a bigger battery. Do we REALLY want super high-res displays to get rid of the benefits of that new battery?!

 

HASWELL. I just remembered. Haswell's supposed to give us 24 hours of battery life. What if instead we get 12 hours of battery life and HiDPI displays with Haswell?!

 

I'm liking that. It gives display manufacturers the time to actually MAKE these displays and it gives Apple time to get situated with their ODD-free computers with bigger batteries.

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post #26 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by bdkennedy View Post

Notably thinner = No optical drive.

Given that I haven't used mine in ages, I have no issue with that.

Now if Apple would overhaul the quality in the iTunes store a bit and get those Extras working on the Apple TV, that's what I want to see more than keeping ODDs in the hardware

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post #27 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by kfury77 View Post

 

The article didn't state the resolution would be exactly double to what it is now, and I don't think it will. In fact there was an article linked to from Macrumors earlier about the possibility of a retina display iMac and suggested:
 Apple could build a 3840 by 2400 pixel 27-inch screen that presented itself as a pixel doubled 1920 by 1200 pixel display. That’s effectively an 84ppi screen @1X and 168ppi screen @2X.

Makes a lot of sense to me!

you loosing workspace - basically going back to a 24 inch screen.

post #28 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by jowie74 View Post
If the 3G iPad is anything to go by, 

 

compared to what. Previous iPads or computers. the 3rd Gen iPad has way better graphics than the previous two. Smoother etc, particularly when the developers actually take the time to do a good job coding their apps. 

 

compared to a computer, of course the iPad sucks. It's not a computer. It doesn't have close to a computers RAM, processor, GPU etc. 

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post


For the 27" display 168 PPI is more than enough to be considered Retina.
I don't get your "focusing" comment. The only way the definition has ever worked is when you consider both PPI and the distance. You can't define it by a single metric.

 

Allow me to restate my comment which I thought was pretty clear. The blogs etc got a hard on with the notion that Retina Display = 300+ DPI as THE definition. Apple on the other hand seems to be focusing on defining Retina Display by the visual result, i.e. the clear text, crisper images, better color and not some arbitrary number. If they can achieve that effect with a 100 dpi screen then it is Retina in their book. Apple's focus is the effect, not the specs. Same as with pretty much everything they do

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post #29 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by agramonte View Post

you loosing workspace - basically going back to a 24 inch screen.

You don't have to run it in Retina mode.

post #30 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by ascii View Post

Makes sense to me too, there are 3840 x 2400 panels already in existence. I would run it in 1920x1200@2X because my eyesight is not very good, but some people I know would run it in 3840 x 2400 and be very happy.

I'm plus 50 years old with eyesight to match and I suspect I would run at the higher resolutions. This based on my transition from an iPad 1 to an iPad 3. The better, crisper, text rendition just makes the iPad 3 easier to read.

This is actually a big surprise to me. For one it wasn't like I could see the pixels on an iPad 1. I'm just convinced there is more to perception than the ability to resolve dots. IPad 3's screen is just an all around joy to use.

Now I fully realize that this doesn't mean the effects would be the same on the desktop. However even with my old eyes it is easy to see the pixels and struggle with funky looking text on large monitors. So I really see such screens as very important to iMacs future. I fully expect that even I will appreciate the screen.
post #31 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by bloggerblog View Post

The display and required graphic power will drain the battery in half the time. So instead of getting 7 hrs of battery in a MBP, it'll be more like 3.5 hrs.

 

Of course, they are getting rid of the ODD, which eats up 15-25% of the interior space depending on the model.  Add into the mix the lower power usage of the new processors, some of that battery tech Apple has gotten patents on recently (I seem to recall articles about that within the last 2 months) and I think if we see any drop in battery life, it would be to 6 hours at worst.  Then again, I also don't think they are going to have to alter the interior volume too drastically to change it to a more wedge shape like the Air.  Note like the Air, not exactly the same. 

 

 

Future MBP:
All the Ivy Bridge quad cores are variable TDP, but most quad cores are 45W, w/one 35W and 1 55W item as well.

NVIDIA Kepler ranges from 32-50W
AMD Radeon HD 7000M ranges from 25-45W, plus one 65W


Current MBP:
6750M and 6770M listed as unknown TDP but they are likely under 40W compared to other cards on the table http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparison_of_AMD_graphics_processing_units#Radeon_HD_6xxxM_Series


2430M i5 35W
2640M i7 35W
2675QM i7 45W
2760QM i7 45W
2860QM i7 45W

 


Really this looks like power requirements for the processors and GPUs will either be a wash or less power.  Driving more pixels will use more power, but my previously mentioned points about the battery tech and more room available due to the lack of ODD should help with that.

post #32 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by agramonte View Post

you loosing workspace - basically going back to a 24 inch screen.

High res screens have never been about workspace. No body I know of is looking for half sized GUI elements or 50% WYSIWYG. These screens are all about making things crisper and easier on the eyes.
post #33 of 82

It would suffice to boost a 27" Thunderbolt Display from 2560×1440 to something around 2912×1638.

 

sorry to link to TUAW, but they define and explain "retina displays" incredibly well here:

http://www.tuaw.com/2012/03/01/retina-display-macs-ipads-and-hidpi-doing-the-math/

post #34 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by SSquirrel View Post

Really this looks like power requirements for the processors and GPUs will either be a wash or less power.  Driving more pixels will use more power, but my previously mentioned points about the battery tech and more room available due to the lack of ODD should help with that.

With no ODD and SSD instead of HD, that's two motors gone. I wonder if, on a model with integrated graphics only, they could make a fanless design?

 

The HD Graphics 4000 can push up to 2560x1600 I believe, enough for Retina on a small screen.

post #35 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

No one on Earth makes 27" 5120x2880 display. The iMacs cannot get retina displays this upgrade time. It's just not possible.

 

I am guessing that for the desktop, Apple will target 4K displays for resolution. Then the marketing department will just spin the definition of "retina" display to something that includes viewing distance and perceived resolution.

 

They do seem to be heading to a resolution independent OS

 

https://developer.apple.com/library/mac/#documentation/UserExperience/Conceptual/HiDPIOverview/Introduction/Introduction.html

 

-kpluck

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post #36 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by ascii View Post

With no ODD and SSD instead of HD, that's two motors gone. I wonder if, on a model with integrated graphics only, they could make a fanless design?

The HD Graphics 4000 can push up to 2560x1600 I believe, enough for Retina on a small screen.

I doubt we are there with Ivy Bridge. Note that the MBA's still have fans.

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post #37 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by kpluck View Post

 

I am guessing that for the desktop, Apple will target 4K displays for resolution. Then the marketing department will just spin the definition of "retina" display to something that includes viewing distance and perceived resolution.

Except your retina is in your eye, so with a brand name like that, it's not really spin (or any kind of late addition) to include viewing distance.

post #38 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post


I doubt we are there with Ivy Bridge. Note that the MBA's still have fans.

You're probably right, would be nice though.

post #39 of 82
Eizo recently announced a 4K display. It's around 36.000 $ !

So, these kinds of resolutions can perhaps be reached and afforded in the next life.
post #40 of 82
Can i have my new Mac Pro first please ???
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