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Old Nov 17, 2012, 12:31 PM   #1
Ademordna
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Which iMac?

I am about to upgrade, and after reading up on opinions concerning the new imac, I'm somewhat uncertain about what to opt for.

Have worked with macs for years, but never owned a desktop, so kinda new to this. Previously worked (for 8 yrs) on a custom built Windows machine, which served me well enough, but I am not prepared to work with Windows any longer (I am a freelance illustrator, also own macbook air and pro).

I basically only need a desktop for running Photoshop CS6 and Illustrator. I work with a lot of layers, etc, but very rarely use video. The work I do is intensive, but not extreme. I don't game or require anything too fancy, but reliability and performance still a big issue.

Apple rep on telephone advises entry level imac at 21.5". Said the 8Gb ram will suit me just fine. Do you guys agree? Wondering if 8Gb will be plenty to run my software efficiently over time.

Any advice would be appreciated. Reading the threads which express concern/displeasure about the new imac specs has certainly made me pause before I leap.

Thanks.
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Old Nov 17, 2012, 01:54 PM   #2
Dr FranknFurter
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Since the 21" is not user upgradable for memory you may want to think about 16GB for use with PS and for future proofing. In addition it seems the Fusion Drive is well worth the extra as well. If your budget allows for both that's what I would go for.

Incidently i'm getting a 27" for the same work as you and will almost certainly get the Fusion drive although I will upgrade the memory myself since it is user upgradable on the 27". The main reason i'm getting the 27" is because I use a 32" for work and i'm so used to the real estate the 21" seems to small even though it is more than adaquat. I have a Macbook Air and will never buy another computer with only a HDD, its SSD or Fusion for me all the way!
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Old Nov 17, 2012, 02:13 PM   #3
Ademordna
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Thanks.
I would prefer the smaller screen, although with max amount of RAM. Really concerned about possible cost of Fusion Drive though: I have to purchase over 1000 of software for this upgrade, too, so quite worried about overall costs.

Was hoping not to have to go above 1400 for hardware.
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Old Nov 17, 2012, 04:13 PM   #4
Dr FranknFurter
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You can get a good estimate of Fusion drive costs by looking at the BTO Mac mini's as the iMac options should* be similar or at least ball park



*accepts no liability if Apple decides to make the drive ridiculously expensive
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Old Nov 17, 2012, 07:04 PM   #5
Ademordna
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Ah, it doesn't look too bad. Here's hoping!
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Old Nov 17, 2012, 07:17 PM   #6
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If you don't mind playing with it, buy the last model, pop a good sized SSD in along with the main drive, and you still retain the optical drive and the ram upgradeability. You wouldn't have the latest, but for the money, it might suit you better.

http://www.ifixit.com/Apple-Parts/iM...-Kit/IF173-002
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Old Nov 17, 2012, 08:35 PM   #7
timcullis
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The fusion drive should be top of your list for spare cash.

Extending the memory to 16GB seems a tad excessive to me (at Apple prices). You ought to talk to someone who has actual experience of the packages you want to use.
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Old Nov 18, 2012, 09:01 AM   #8
Ademordna
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Thanks for the replies.
I must admit, I am out of my depth here a bit. Haven't updated a desktop in so long, and when I last did, it was custom built, so I'm ashamed to discover just how much I've forgotten since then.

One question: why would the Fusion prioritize over the RAM?
Weren't people using Photoshop CS on the last iMac model with only 4Gb Ram?
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Old Nov 18, 2012, 09:46 AM   #9
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I use Adobe's CS and like you, I do very little video. Still I wouldn't consider purchasing a machine with 8GB RAM, particularly for a machine that you will be using for a number of years. I think that a 16GB RAM, 1 TB Fusion Drive 21.5" iMac would be a very capable machine for your purposes.

----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ademordna View Post
Weren't people using Photoshop CS on the last iMac model with only 4Gb Ram?
Each version of CS seems to a take more resources. Where you see PS bog down is with really big files. You mention that you were going to purchase 1,000 of software, if price is a concern have your considered Adobe's Creative Cloud?
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Old Nov 18, 2012, 04:35 PM   #10
Ademordna
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Thanks Dornblaser.

Not familiar with the Cloud

Really wanted to purchase software on disc.
Is the Fusion really necessary though? I never use video and when working with layers tend not to use more than around 60, but that could alter.
Apart from this, the computer wouldn't be used for anything else, and only very rare web use.

Would love to hear from people running those software packages but not sure where in the forums to post.
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Old Nov 18, 2012, 06:15 PM   #11
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Why would you want to purchase software on a disk?

http://www.adobe.com/products/creati...121119001445:s
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Old Nov 18, 2012, 06:55 PM   #12
Ademordna
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Not really familiar with Creative Cloud, so still trying to get me head around it. Prices seem a bit steep though, unless I'm looking at it all wrong (probable!)
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Old Nov 18, 2012, 07:13 PM   #13
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For about $50.00 a month you can download all of Adobe's products plus has access to CC "extras". Adobe is clearly moving to a "cloud" model.
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Old Nov 18, 2012, 07:40 PM   #14
Ademordna
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For me that would be 48 per month, which sounds insane if it's ongoing. I would just prefer to buy something up front and know that it's paid for. I'm going to have to do a bit more reading I think.
I only 'need' photoshop, but was considering Illustrator as an extra a few months down the line.

I'm out of the loop I guess!
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Old Nov 19, 2012, 09:47 AM   #15
Dornblaser
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Actually it is not badly priced if you upgrade your software with each new version of CS. Like you, I use basically two apps, Dreamweaver and Photoshop in my case. I switched from the Web Premium suite to Creative Cloud when it was introduced. If you "buy and hold" your apps through several upgrades then it probably doesn't make sense.
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Old Nov 19, 2012, 03:32 PM   #16
blanka
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Get a mid-mini. Forget the new iMac. It will stink.
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Old Nov 19, 2012, 03:49 PM   #17
Hakone
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27" with Superdrive 3TB.
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Old Nov 19, 2012, 04:06 PM   #18
Ademordna
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Thanks for all suggestions.

I'm currently thinking of the smaller screen with 16GbRAM and i7.
Actually can't afford the 27" with further power upgrades like RAM, etc. Need to keep it around 1700 max.....hopefully!

Will only be using this machine for photoshop cs6 (digital painting/montage work). No web or video or RAW files.
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