We present a new evaluation framework for implicit and explicit (IMEX) Runge–Kutta time-stepping schemes. The new framework uses a linearized non-hydrostatic system of normal modes. We utilize the framework to investigate the stability of IMEX methods and their dispersion and dissipation of gravity, Rossby, and acoustic waves. We test the new framework on a variety of IMEX schemes and use it to develop and analyze a set of second-order low-storage IMEX Runge–Kutta methods with a high Courant–Friedrichs–Lewy (CFL) number. We show that the new framework is more selective than the 2-D acoustic system previously used in the literature. Schemes that are stable for the 2-D acoustic system are not stable for the system of normal modes.