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Intel's Coffee Lake Chips Bring Significant Speed Boosts to 2019 iMacs
All of the new 27-inch 5K models offer superior performance compared to their 2017 counterparts, with single-core performance up an average of 6 to 11 percent and multi-core performance up 43 to 49 percent for six-core models. The higher-end models with 3.6GHz 8-core Core i9 chip offer the biggest boost in multi-core performance, with speeds up 66 percent.
The highest-end iMac earned a single-core score of 6157 and a multi-core score of 32293, compared to the 5864/1971 single and multi-core scores of the equivalent high-end machine.
Even the base model 2019 27-inch iMac with a 3.0GHz 6-core 8th-gen chip saw notable gains, earning a single-core score of 5222 and a multi-core score of 20145, compared to the 4767/13682 scores the low-end 2017 models earned.
These chips are two years apart, so it is no surprise that even the mid-level chips are outperforming the higher-end chips from 2017.
6-core and 8-core chips in the 27-inch models are now competitive with the 2017 iMac Pro models with 8 and 10-cores. The high-end 8-core iMac offers 16 percent higher single core performance and just 10 percent lower multi-core performance than the 10-core iMac Pro.
Gains are more modest for the 21.5-inch 4K iMac models, but still significant. Single-core performance is up 5 to 10 percent, while multi-core performance has increased by 10 to 50 percent.
As Poole points out, the performance gains in the 2019 iMac models are due to higher frequencies and core counts as the underlying architecture hasn't been updated.
Poole says that while there's a significant boost when it comes to multi-core performance in the new iMacs, along with a decent boost in single-core performance, the increase isn't enough to "justify upgrading from a 2017 iMac."
Apple's newest iMac models were announced last week and have been arriving to customers this week. Aside from Intel's new 8th and 9th-generation Coffee Lake chips, Radeon Pro Vega graphics options, and faster RAM, there have been no other improvements to the 2019 iMac models.