Recent reports have indicated that some new iMacs have shipped with visible signs of a serious manufacturing defect: They have crooked displays. The defective models seem to have unaligned mounting stands that lead to crookedness.
While not every person who purchased the new iMac came across the issue, there are enough people to confirm that is a manufacturing fault on Apple’s part.
YouTuber iPhonedo was the first to come out about it. While reviewing the recently-released model, he discovered that it was leaning on one side. As he explains in the video, he started by testing it with a twist tie, folding it perpendicularly, and putting it below one of the two ends of the computer. The length of the tie was exactly the distance between the surface of his desk and the iMac. While one side measured 7.6 centimeters from the desk, the other measured 8 centimeters. A 0.4-centimeter difference may seem minor, but it’s certainly not how the product was designed.
The second case of a customer running into this issue came from another person on the Apple Support Communities who measured a 1mm disparity between both sides of the display. The third complaint was made by Reddit user Synchronicity VII who learned about the defect from iPhonedo’s video and then proved his claim by saying,
“Checked mine after watching this and it’s also crooked. Not to the degree of his, but not completely level either. I’m outside of my return window and I can’t take the time hit of not having a machine to work on for a month, but super disappointing that Apple of all companies is shipping units with such a glaring oversight.”
A MacRumors’ videographer is another person who attested to this fault. Reportedly, the orange M1 iMac that MacRumors ordered for reviewing had a crooked display as well. MacRumors says it initially dismissed the defect, believing the fault was with the desk. However, the number of other similar complaints has made it clear that the issue is on the company’s part.
To add to the problem, this isn’t a user-fixable issue. There are seven screws that hold the iMac’s display to its mounting stand and it doesn’t seem easy to move them around.
Our only hope as of now is that Apple allows the return of the defective pieces after its two-week return window. However, since this problem isn’t on a large scale at the moment, we’re not sure if Apple will cooperate and budge its return policy for a handful of faulty units. It doesn’t appear to be a widely reported issue just yet, but those planning on purchasing the M1 iMac should make sure to test the display within two weeks and return as soon as they see a problem.