Hands-On With the 24-Inch M3 iMac

Apple in October refreshed the iMac and MacBook Pro, introducing the first M3 chips with 3-nanometer processors. We've already checked out the MacBook Pro with M3 Pro and the MacBook Pro with M3 Max, so we thought we'd wrap up our M3 review series with the ‌iMac‌.

If you have an M1 ‌iMac‌, you're not going to notice any physical differences between the old model and the new model with the M3 chip, because Apple didn't make any updates to the design or the color offerings.

Everything is the exact same, with the thin design, 24-inch Retina display, six-speaker sound system, and a selection of seven two-tone color options.

What's different is the internals, and the jump from ‌M1‌ to M3 is a major update in terms of CPU and GPU speeds. Built on the 3-nanometer process, the M3 chip has some major GPU improvements thanks to Dynamic Caching, hardware-accelerated ray tracing, and mesh shading.

The M3 chip is 2.5x faster than the ‌M1‌ chip when it comes to GPU performance, and it's better than before for gaming, 3D rendering, video editing, and similar tasks. As for the CPU, the performance cores are up to 30 percent faster than the performance cores in the ‌M1‌, while the efficiency cores are up to 50 percent faster than the ‌M1‌ efficiency cores. In Geekbench benchmarks, the M3 comes in at around 20 percent faster overall.

Depending on what you're doing, there is a notable difference between the ‌M1‌ and M3 in real-world performance and it's great to have an update for a machine that was one of the oldest in Apple's lineup. If you need a desktop Mac for day-to-day tasks, you're not going to be disappointed with the M3 ‌iMac‌.

If you're holding out for a larger ‌iMac‌ with Apple silicon, Apple doesn't think you should wait. The company confirmed there are no plans for another 27-inch iMac, and Apple recommends that customers who need a bigger and better desktop computer turn to the Mac Studio and the Studio Display.

That said, there are rumors that Apple is working on an ‌iMac‌ that has a display somewhere around 30 inches, but it's not yet clear when that model might be coming out, and it seems to be at least a year or two away.

What do you think of the M3 ‌iMac‌? Let us know in the comments below.

Related Roundup: iMac
Buyer's Guide: iMac (Neutral)
Related Forum: iMac

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Top Rated Comments

tomtad Avatar
26 weeks ago

Still think it was a mistake removing the apple logo from the front.
I must admit I feel the same, I've tried to get used to it but it still always looks a bit off whenever I see one.

A small logo colour matched to the rear of the computer sat on the chin would really finish it off.

Attachment Image
Score: 27 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Tuck_ Avatar
26 weeks ago
Still think it was a mistake removing the apple logo from the front.
Score: 18 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Chuckeee Avatar
26 weeks ago
But which color is the fastest?
Score: 17 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Chuckeee Avatar
26 weeks ago
Since this is a hands-on review. How does resistant is the display to fingerprints when some yahoo touches the screen while I’m showing them something?
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
jaybar Avatar
26 weeks ago
Not everyone needs a larger iMac. Our iMac 24 M1 nicely fits our custom smaller desk. Also we sit close to our iMac and we can see the whole screen without having to turn our heads. We are light users. 8GB of RAM suits us. If I were ordering a new iMac today I would order with more RAM, to decrease boot up time. However our use case does not require it. We are very happy with our iMac 24.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
PassiveSmoking Avatar
26 weeks ago

But which color is the fastest?
The British Racing Green one
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)