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21.5-inch iMac is officially dead

21.5-inch iMac
(Image credit: Future)

Apple brought its M1 chips to the all-in-one desktop with the 24-inch iMac earlier this year, with that model replacing the 21.5-inch iMacs that relied on Intel processors. Despite the name, though, the 24-inch iMac wasn't that much bigger than its 21.5 inch counterpart, thanks to smaller bezels and other tricks.

And now, the 21.5-inch iMac has truly been eased out of Apple's lineup after lingering in the Apple online store if you knew where to look. 

The 21-inch iMac had been tucked away on Apple's site, not given the prominence of the new, colorful 24-inch model, but it was still available to buy as recently as last Thursday. Now, as first spotted by the YouTuber Tech God on Twitter, the toggle on the cached page linked above has vanished, and only 27-inch models remain. 

With the final $1,099 Intel iMac off the virtual shelf, that leaves the base $1,299 Apple M1 24-inch iMac as the least expensive all-in-one computer on Apple’s site. (If you provide your own monitor, the Mac mini starts at $699.) 

That extra $200 is certainly well spent though: the 21.5-inch model hadn’t received a refresh since 2019, and the model left on the virtual shelf wasn’t hugely appealing in late 2021, with its 2.3GHz dual-core seventh-generation Core i5 processor, 8GB RAM and 256GB SSD. Unsurprisingly, the older Intel model had no hopes of keeping up with even the entry-level 24-inch iMac

Indeed, our senior editor Alex Wawro was extremely positive in his 24-inch iMac review, giving it a well deserved four-and-a-half stars, and a place in our list of the best all-in-one computers you can buy. Describing the M1-powered iMac as a “breath of fresh air for the aging iMac line,” he was especially impressed with the new panel and built-in speakers. “The screen just looks so darn good, and when you play movies or games on it the speakers make those experiences sound great,” he wrote.

The old-school 27-inch iMac remains available for those who must have an Intel fix, but it may not be that long for this world in its own right, as Apple will reportedly give the big-screen iMac the M1 treatment at some point in 2022. For now, though, the current 21-inch iMac remains available to buy, with prices starting at $1,799. 

Then again, if money is no object, and you want to feel the power of Apple’s new M1 Pro and M1 Max chips today, the 2021 14-inch MacBook Pro starts at $1,999. 

Alan Martin

Freelance contributor Alan has been writing about tech for over a decade, covering phones, drones and everything in between. Previously Deputy Editor of tech site Alphr, his words are found all over the web and in the occasional magazine too. When not weighing up the pros and cons of the latest smartwatch, you'll probably find him tackling his ever-growing games backlog. Or, more likely, playing Spelunky for the millionth time.