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Old Nov 28, 2012, 09:20 PM   #51
Johnf1285
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So I'm stuck between a rock and a hard place.

The local apple store opens at 10am on Friday. Currently I am up for any 21.5" configuration as long as it has fusion. I hear mixed opinions about whether or not the stores will stock any fusion models.

So I am debating whether or not I should just purchase immediately online once the store is back up (assuming that it happens prior to 10am EST). Or wait to purchase and see what is cooking at the Apple retail store.

There is a chance within 4 or 5 hours of the online store coming up, that shipping dates drop to 2 or 3 weeks on the 21.5". This is ultimately what I am trying to avoid. That is also assuming that the online store is up before 10 am EST.

But, my real issue is that my patience finally wore out!

Another deciding factor would be seeing estimated shipping times depending upon configurations once the store is online.

Last edited by Johnf1285; Nov 28, 2012 at 09:51 PM.
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Old Nov 28, 2012, 09:38 PM   #52
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Your question, "Any thoughts?" surely is rhetorical.
Rhetorical?!? Lol, pure inquisition.
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Old Nov 28, 2012, 09:49 PM   #53
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Rhetorical?!? Lol, pure inquisition.
Ok, well if you have the money I say go for the gold. If for some reason you decide you made the wrong choice, you could sell it and get most of your money back. But I don't see that happening. Your situation is very similar to mine. I could afford the maxed out 27", but I'll probably skip the over-priced SSD in favor of the 1TB fusion for bootcamp compatibility. My first iMac was a 24" and it was a good size - but when I went to a 27" it was even better. I'll never go back to a smaller screen. And I don't play games all that much, but when I do, I want them to play well. I'm probably going with the i5 cpu, as I don't do anything that would take advantage of hyperthreading. But who knows, maybe I'll spring for it anyway.

In the end it's up to you - just ask yourself which path would lead to less buyer's remorse.
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Old Nov 28, 2012, 09:53 PM   #54
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Don't forget that we are in Apple's extended return policy. So if the 21.5" isn't for you, you can return it within a week or so, just in time for the 27 to be available - assuming it doesn't "sell out" if it is purchasable on Friday.

Oh so many questions and thoughts just days before it's finally available!
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Old Nov 28, 2012, 10:16 PM   #55
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Ok, well if you have the money I say go for the gold. If for some reason you decide you made the wrong choice, you could sell it and get most of your money back. But I don't see that happening. Your situation is very similar to mine. I could afford the maxed out 27", but I'll probably skip the over-priced SSD in favor of the 1TB fusion for bootcamp compatibility. My first iMac was a 24" and it was a good size - but when I went to a 27" it was even better. I'll never go back to a smaller screen. And I don't play games all that much, but when I do, I want them to play well. I'm probably going with the i5 cpu, as I don't do anything that would take advantage of hyperthreading. But who knows, maybe I'll spring for it anyway.

In the end it's up to you - just ask yourself which path would lead to less buyer's remorse.
A fine response! I'm trying to rationalize spending for a maxed out 27". The 21.5" is really all that I need, but I don't know if I should indulge. Like you, when I play games, I want to play them well. The 650M is a capable card and it can play current games at good (high) settings. Like I said, I used to game on a PS3. The 650M will play games at better specs than a PS3, so do I really need to game on a 680MX? Oh decisions decisions...woe is the life of an iMac buyer.
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Old Nov 28, 2012, 10:35 PM   #56
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When/If I do get one, it'll be the top-end 27", base everything except the 680. Originally thought about the 21" but that overpriced RAM is appalling tbh! I'll buy my own and install it.
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Old Nov 28, 2012, 10:47 PM   #57
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A day later, and I've changed my mind - going with the 21.5" 2.9GHz i5, Fusion Drive, and 16GB. Yes, I'll overpay for the RAM, and I won't get the 27" screen for a mere $150.
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Originally Posted by MagicThief83 View Post
I'm having second thoughts as we draw closer to the order date. ... Any thoughts?
There's nothing like first world problems.

It's funny because I'm actually having second thoughts too on getting the 27" instead of the 21.5". I read your entire post rnb and I agree with many of your points. I've had a year with my 2011 iMac (sold), and I ran many native OSX apps in full screen and I agree that the smaller space does keep you more focused.

What's personally pulling me into the 27" however is the same reason as mentioned by MagicThief. I'm a pretty heavy gamer and it sounds like the 680MX is going to be a monster. 4X the VRAM will definitely be a large boost. By the way, with either educational or business discounts, a fully maxed out 27", not withstanding a 768GB SSD, will only cost about $2500. As i mentioned in our earlier discussion, I think the BTO upgrades for the 27" are very well priced. So I wouldn't worry about spending more than 3K on it

As for apps, I'll be running Logic Pro and the 27" display makes for a good twin display substitute, and the extra real estate benefits in this case.

Yea, tough call, but if I wasn't into gaming, it certainly would have been a sure bet on the 21.5". Anyway, just one more day to figure it out...
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Last edited by Icaras; Nov 28, 2012 at 11:32 PM. Reason: Forgot to add a quote
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Old Nov 28, 2012, 10:55 PM   #58
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I'm surprised at the number of people who are opting for the 21.5" option. The substantially greater screen real estate is worth it alone to get the 27" (of course, I say that having had a 27" iMac and a MBP w/ a 27" Cinema Display before that). Maybe I'm just a screen space junkie.

But combining the fact that the 21.5" doesn't have user-upgradable RAM and the high price that Apple charges for RAM seems to make the 27" the clear winner.
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Old Nov 28, 2012, 10:55 PM   #59
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I'm going to get the $1,999 27" iMac. I'll keep the standard RAM and put in my own. Will definitely get the 680MX at $150. I'll probably get the Fusion drive, but may just keep the 1TB that it comes with. Not sure about i7, because the i5 is probably fast enough.
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Old Nov 28, 2012, 10:59 PM   #60
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Originally Posted by rnb2 View Post
A day later, and I've changed my mind - going with the 21.5" 2.9GHz i5, Fusion Drive, and 16GB. Yes, I'll overpay for the RAM, and I won't get the 27" screen for a mere $150.

However, I feel pretty good about the decision, because I actually did some testing today to see exactly what it will be like to have the smaller screen. I have my 27" set up with multiple Spaces for different types of apps, so I went through each one and rearranged and resized the windows to the size they would be on the smaller screen (I also switched my wallpaper to black). Since the 21.5" is a few inches shorter than the 27", I also positioned the windows so they are at the correct height.

What I found was interesting, from a psychological perspective - the space looked hopelessly small when I started the process. However, by the time I got everything arranged and started working with it, I really liked it. Unlike the 27", there isn't room to put 4-5 apps on one screen, so I had to rearrange things, having 1-3 apps per space. I didn't have the constantly-updating information overload that I sometimes feel with the 27". Yes, I could do the same sort of rearrangement on a 27" screen, but with so much space, it ends up looking odd, and wasteful - why have the 27" screen if you're not going to use all of that space?

In the end, I think the 21.5" feels like it fits Apple's current ethos better - while I won't run all of my apps in full-screen mode, there is an enforced winnowing-down of what is in front of me at any one time. It feels, oddly, kinda like a big iPad (I use a combination of Magic Trackpad and Wacom tablet), with it's limited information density on any one 'screen' - this may be better for my concentration/attention span.
Sorry, but this sounds like you're trying to talk yourself out of what you really want. And I think down the road you'll wish you had gotten the 27".

It's only $150 and if you're spending $2000+ on a computer you're talking about less than 10% price difference. Shoot, you'd save $150 on RAM alone by being able to upgrade it yourself.
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Old Nov 28, 2012, 11:01 PM   #61
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Good article comparing all 3 types of drives.

http://www.computerworld.com/s/artic...rth_the_money_
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Old Nov 29, 2012, 12:53 AM   #62
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Sorry, but this sounds like you're trying to talk yourself out of what you really want. And I think down the road you'll wish you had gotten the 27".

It's only $150 and if you're spending $2000+ on a computer you're talking about less than 10% price difference. Shoot, you'd save $150 on RAM alone by being able to upgrade it yourself.
Actually, I think it's the opposite - I'm talking myself out of what I think I *should* want: the biggest, baddest, fastest machine available. I'm still building my business and money doesn't grow on trees - my original spec was going to be over $2500 once I got everything purchased, and I've shaved about $500 off of that. Based on my testing, I really don't need the 27" screen or a faster processor.

By taking a hard look at what I really need (as opposed to what I think I should want), it became clear that the most important upgrades for me are Thunderbolt/USB3/Fusion Drive/less reflective screen, so I'm getting the least expensive machine that gives me access to those options.

My 27" iMac is coming up on three years old, so I could probably get another year out of it. However, I know the issues with this machine (I've already had the screen replaced once due to the dust issue), and I can still get a decent amount by trading it in to PowerMax (including free shipping of the 27" to them - a not-insignificant cost). I can justify purchasing a new machine for the upgrades I mentioned, but there is such a thing as buying more than you need, and I think I'm avoiding that trap.
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Old Nov 29, 2012, 01:52 AM   #63
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Good article comparing all 3 types of drives.

http://www.computerworld.com/s/artic...rth_the_money_
Thanks for posting that. Made good reading.
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Old Nov 29, 2012, 07:51 AM   #64
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There's nothing like first world problems.

It's funny because I'm actually having second thoughts too on getting the 27" instead of the 21.5". I read your entire post rnb and I agree with many of your points. I've had a year with my 2011 iMac (sold), and I ran many native OSX apps in full screen and I agree that the smaller space does keep you more focused.

What's personally pulling me into the 27" however is the same reason as mentioned by MagicThief. I'm a pretty heavy gamer and it sounds like the 680MX is going to be a monster. 4X the VRAM will definitely be a large boost. By the way, with either educational or business discounts, a fully maxed out 27", not withstanding a 768GB SSD, will only cost about $2500. As i mentioned in our earlier discussion, I think the BTO upgrades for the 27" are very well priced. So I wouldn't worry about spending more than 3K on it
My argument (in my head to myself) is that a 21.5" iMac is more powerful than a PS3, as that is what I used to formerly game on. So the iMac will definitely be a step above what I'm used in terms of quality (graphics) gaming. That said, I can't help but fawn over the 680MX, and since this will be my iMac for years to come (4-5), I would like it to stand the test of time, as I know a 680MX will carry its weight well for several years to come. However, my only concern is on the amount of money I put down as I fear it will put me well over 3K. We don't have official Apple BTO pricing since their iMacs aren't live yet, so basing our estimates on that seller website that was posted a couple days ago, is still inconclusive at best. Damn it, the thought is quite the burden to bear!
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Old Nov 29, 2012, 07:59 AM   #65
Scrapula
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Why not order online and choose the option to pick it up at your local Apple store? When stuff is in stock, you can pick it up the same day. Otherwise, it will give you the estimated ship date.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnf1285 View Post
So I'm stuck between a rock and a hard place.

The local apple store opens at 10am on Friday. Currently I am up for any 21.5" configuration as long as it has fusion. I hear mixed opinions about whether or not the stores will stock any fusion models.

So I am debating whether or not I should just purchase immediately online once the store is back up (assuming that it happens prior to 10am EST). Or wait to purchase and see what is cooking at the Apple retail store.

There is a chance within 4 or 5 hours of the online store coming up, that shipping dates drop to 2 or 3 weeks on the 21.5". This is ultimately what I am trying to avoid. That is also assuming that the online store is up before 10 am EST.

But, my real issue is that my patience finally wore out!

Another deciding factor would be seeing estimated shipping times depending upon configurations once the store is online.
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Old Nov 29, 2012, 08:01 AM   #66
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My argument (in my head to myself) is that a 21.5" iMac is more powerful than a PS3, as that is what I used to formerly game on. So the iMac will definitely be a step above what I'm used in terms of quality (graphics) gaming. That said, I can't help but fawn over the 680MX, and since this will be my iMac for years to come (4-5), I would like it to stand the test of time, as I know a 680MX will carry its weight well for several years to come. However, my only concern is on the amount of money I put down as I fear it will put me well over 3K. We don't have official Apple BTO pricing since their iMacs aren't live yet, so basing our estimates on that seller website that was posted a couple days ago, is still inconclusive at best. Damn it, the thought is quite the burden to bear!
Comparing a computer with a PS3 is completly unreasonable (that's to be polite). The PS3 doesn't NEED the kind of power the computer will require as everything (system and games) is designed AND optimised for only one task. Gaming.

Oh and forget being on top of games for 4-5 years with a 21 inch. It's already classed (at best) as mid range THIS year. Sure you will be able to play all games with decent graphics THIS year but the games in 3-4 not to mention 5 years will be another ballpark.
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Old Nov 29, 2012, 08:09 AM   #67
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My 27" is now three, it was the top end non BTO when it came out. I'm starting to feel the pinch. I do a lot of heavy photo editing and video editing and my MBP with i7 really outperforms the i5 with it's hyper threading. My other bottle neck is the HDD, I was hoping for a cheap 256GB SSD option.

I want another 27" and want more VRAM so that pairs me up with the top end. On top of that I will probably get the 1TB fusion, would love 3TB but it's expensive. I'll also have to get the i7 so I can have hyperthreading. I do get HE discount but I don't think there will be much change out of 2k.

I just wish there was an easy way to sell my current machine.
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Old Nov 29, 2012, 09:39 AM   #68
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Why not order online and choose the option to pick it up at your local Apple store? When stuff is in stock, you can pick it up the same day. Otherwise, it will give you the estimated ship date.
Very good point. I wonder that if the Fusion Drive models are indeed available in store, whether or not they'll show up as "pick up" once the online store goes up. Either way, I took the day off tomorrow to catch up on a number of things, and of course to stay up all night clicking refresh and then going to the apple store at 10am lol!
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Old Nov 29, 2012, 11:03 AM   #69
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Comparing a computer with a PS3 is completly unreasonable (that's to be polite). The PS3 doesn't NEED the kind of power the computer will require as everything (system and games) is designed AND optimised for only one task. Gaming.

Oh and forget being on top of games for 4-5 years with a 21 inch. It's already classed (at best) as mid range THIS year. Sure you will be able to play all games with decent graphics THIS year but the games in 3-4 not to mention 5 years will be another ballpark.
My comparison was in reference to the superiority of PC gaming, as a 21.5", even with mid (actually a GT 650M is considered high range) range graphics is still vastly superior to the graphical capabilities of a PS3. Actually, quite a reasonable comparison (to be polite lol) to be perfectly honest. Yeah, I agree with you though as I know even 1-2 years from now, the 21.5" may struggle with newer game releases. Frankly, I find myself more and more inclined to future poof my purchase, and just bite the bullet and get a top-end 27" with a 680MX. I'll have to rearrange my desk setup but I think I'll be able to adjust. In everyone's opinion, what's a comfortable sitting/viewing distance from the 27"?
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Old Nov 29, 2012, 11:33 AM   #70
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My comparison was in reference to the superiority of PC gaming, as a 21.5", even with mid (actually a GT 650M is considered high range) range graphics is still vastly superior to the graphical capabilities of a PS3. Actually, quite a reasonable comparison (to be polite lol) to be perfectly honest. Yeah, I agree with you though as I know even 1-2 years from now, the 21.5" may struggle with newer game releases. Frankly, I find myself more and more inclined to future poof my purchase, and just bite the bullet and get a top-end 27" with a 680MX. I'll have to rearrange my desk setup but I think I'll be able to adjust. In everyone's opinion, what's a comfortable sitting/viewing distance from the 27"?
Same distance is fine since the PPI is about the same on both models. The 27" is almost like having two monitors in a sense.

I've had a 27" 2010 model and a 21.5" 2010 model. They were both positioned on my desk at the same distance, about 3 feet or so away from me. Give or take.
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Old Nov 29, 2012, 09:45 PM   #71
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My comparison was in reference to the superiority of PC gaming, as a 21.5", even with mid (actually a GT 650M is considered high range) range graphics is still vastly superior to the graphical capabilities of a PS3. Actually, quite a reasonable comparison (to be polite lol) to be perfectly honest. Yeah, I agree with you though as I know even 1-2 years from now, the 21.5" may struggle with newer game releases. Frankly, I find myself more and more inclined to future poof my purchase, and just bite the bullet and get a top-end 27" with a 680MX. I'll have to rearrange my desk setup but I think I'll be able to adjust. In everyone's opinion, what's a comfortable sitting/viewing distance from the 27"?
I currently have a 22" inch screen and I sit about 38" away from it. When my iMac arrives, it will be about the same.
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Old Nov 29, 2012, 09:59 PM   #72
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21.5" with 1TB fusion, 16gb RAM, upgraded CPU if I can afford it. Only need it for school, some Steam games, and EVE Online.
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Old Nov 29, 2012, 10:47 PM   #73
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I plan to order the top model with the optional 3.4GHz Quad-Core i7, GeForce GTX 680MX, and 1TB Fusion drive. That will bring the tally to $2599. That's only $150 more than the 1984 Macintosh ($2495).

Considering the entry level 2012 Quad-Core Mac Pro starts at $2499 with NO display, less memory (6GB), slower GPU (Radeon HD 5770), and slower drive (1TB 7200rpm HDD), I think the config above is a good deal.
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Old Nov 29, 2012, 11:08 PM   #74
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I was determined to get the high-end 21.5 with Fusion Drive, but had a second thought after reading the forums. I think I'm getting it without any BTO option. Maybe my next iMac will have Fusion Drive when it will be standard/cheaper.
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Old Nov 29, 2012, 11:28 PM   #75
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27" base with 1TB fusion drive
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