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besler3035
Nov 29, 2005, 08:46 PM
I'm looking into a purchase of a new iMac 20" computer, and was wondering what the recommendation for specs (memory, hard drive, etc.) would be when using the computer for internet browsing, photo editing with iPhoto, very basic video and DVD production (using iMovie and iDVD most likely), music with iTunes, and Microsoft Office.

I have an iBook G4 with a 512 MB stick of memory, but this was my main concern for the iMac. I don't want the computer to be sluggish, and I want to take advantage of all of its features. So, if I do decide to go with more memory, is it easy enough to install myself (not a hardware expert, especially on the Mac side), or should I have Apple do it when I order the iMac? And are there any good memory sites out there if I do decide to install it myself?

Thanks.

Josh396
Nov 29, 2005, 09:23 PM
The current 20" iMac should be perfect. It comes with a 250 GB hard drive which should be plenty, or you could get a BTO model with a 500 GB hard drive. As for the memory, everyone suggests getting it elsewhere and installing it yourself. I've never done it but I've heard it's easy and I would think it would be. As for where to get it from, CanadaRAM I'm sure can lead you in the right direction with that. I think for your needs 1.5 GB should be good enough, although more is always better.

zim
Nov 29, 2005, 10:03 PM
I would recommend adding as much RAM as you can, max it out if possible. You may also want to invest into an external FireWire drive for the video work, video takes up a lot of space... roughly 1GB per 5 min of Digital Video.

besler3035
Nov 29, 2005, 10:08 PM
I would recommend adding as much RAM as you can, max it out if possible. You may also want to invest into an external FireWire drive for the video work, video takes up a lot of space... roughly 1GB per 5 min of Digital Video.

Would this include video from a regular video camera? That's all we'll probably be using it for. Right now I'm thinking 1 GB of memory with the standard hard drive size. Oh, by the way, this iMac will replace our old Dell of six years...finally switching the whole family over!

Bubbasteve
Nov 29, 2005, 10:19 PM
The factory iMac should be fine...if you think you need more RAM then buy from newegg or crucial

2nyRiggz
Nov 29, 2005, 10:22 PM
I would recommend adding as much RAM as you can, max it out if possible. You may also want to invest into an external FireWire drive for the video work, video takes up a lot of space... roughly 1GB per 5 min of Digital Video.

I concur. Dont worry about the video vram cuz theres not much u can do about that....whatever it comes with u r stuck with unless u get a powermac.

Bless

zim
Nov 29, 2005, 10:27 PM
Would this include video from a regular video camera? That's all we'll probably be using it for. Right now I'm thinking 1 GB of memory with the standard hard drive size. Oh, by the way, this iMac will replace our old Dell of six years...finally switching the whole family over!

I could be mistaken but iMovie imports all video as DV (Digital Video) so yes, 5min will equal roughly 1GB of data. Personally if I was in your position, I would go with as much RAM as possible and then invest in an external drive or two. Lacie makes a good drive, the D2 series is good for video. I work on an iMac, 20" G4 768MB of RAM, and if I could have done anything over it would have been to purchase more RAM.

CanadaRAM
Nov 29, 2005, 10:32 PM
Would this include video from a regular video camera? That's all we'll probably be using it for.
Wait -- what do you mean by a regular video camera? A Hi8 or SVHS?
You need to know whether you have digital video or analog video. A modern digital video camera uses miniDV tapes and has a firewire port for downloading DV to your computer. Other variations on this theme include recording to DVD-R disks (possibly not the best choice) or recording to hard disk(s) in the camera.

If your video camera has only RCA and S-Video analog outs, you will need another device to convert from analog to a DV signal to get it into your computer - $200 - $300

besler3035
Nov 29, 2005, 10:57 PM
Wait -- what do you mean by a regular video camera? A Hi8 or SVHS?
You need to know whether you have digital video or analog video. A modern digital video camera uses miniDV tapes and has a firewire port for downloading DV to your computer. Other variations on this theme include recording to DVD-R disks (possibly not the best choice) or recording to hard disk(s) in the camera.

If your video camera has only RCA and S-Video analog outs, you will need another device to convert from analog to a DV signal to get it into your computer - $200 - $300

I mean the Hi8 kind that records to the miniDV tapes. I take it then I will not need that other device to convert it that you're talking about. It's not a brand new camera...maybe a 4-year-old Sony, so I'm not sure if we have a Firewire cable for it or not. I sure hope so. It's my dad's, so I'm not real positive on the whole thing.

Right now I'd like to stay away from buying an extra drive unless absolutely necessary. I do have our old Dell which I talked about previously that I'll be using for storage purposes, so if we need more room I can put the movies on there probably. Can't edit them on there, but if they're done, I can store 'em.

CmdrLaForge
Nov 30, 2005, 03:47 AM
Hi,

I have the new iMac and I added 1 gig memory myself. That was really easy. Unfortunatly the first RAM I got was bad and the iMac started to hang constantly. I exchanged it and now it works perfect. I also have the iBook with 1.42GHz G4. The iMac is sooo much faster and has a much better screen. You will completly stop using the iBook unless on the road.

If you do a lot of videowork think about getting an external firewire drive. Maybe from LaCie. You get much more gigs/$ compared to the internal BTO option (if money matters to you. To some it doesn't)