Currently Being ModeratedFeb 9, 2013 7:07 PM (in response to iMacForMe)
iMacs made in Mid-2012 or earlier are thicker/heavier, but have a CD/DVD drive which the Late-2012 and the 2013 models do not. They're ultra-thin and sleek in design, however, so if you don't mind getting an external optical drive if you think you'd need it, get the newer model.
Currently Being ModeratedFeb 9, 2013 7:15 PM (in response to iMacForMe)
With the (little) informaton you've provided, it's impossible to say what's best for you.
The late 2012 iMacs have superior processors, graphics processors, and display technology. They also offer the Fusion hard disk "system" that combines flash storage and traditional hard drive technology to provide faster system response for the most commonly used applications and files. The 27" models contain user-accessible RAM slots and can be equipped with up to 32GB of RAM. Both the 21.5" and 27" models offer USB 3.0 ports, offering faster interaction with peripheral devices.
But...what Apple giveth...sometimes Apple taketh away. Gone are optical disk drives on both models. Gone are the easily reached SD card readers...now they're on the rear of the computer in a less convenient location. Gone is the removable stand on the 27" model and optional VESA mounting adaptor. Gone are the user accessible RAM slots on the 21.5" models...RAM in those is now soldered into the logic board. Gone is the 7200 RPM hard drive in the 21.5" models...replaced with slower drives.
You'll save money with the 2011 models, yes. You'll be using older technology that won't hold its value as long as the newer ones.
So...to answer your question. It depends. Do you need the optical drive built into the computer, or is a small external model OK? Do you mind hooking up a small memory card reader so you can easily reach it when you need it?
Me? I got the new 27" model...but that's me.
Currently Being ModeratedJul 15, 2013 7:02 PM (in response to Mike Osborn)
Apple does offer the iMacs without the stand and a VESA mount. You just can't get an iMac with the stand and then take off the stand and use a VESA mount like you used to do.