Register FAQ / Rules Forum Spy Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read
Go Back   MacRumors Forums > Apple Hardware > Desktops > iMac

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old Nov 30, 2012, 08:31 AM   #1
N33t
macrumors member
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
New iMacs - Gaming PoV

Looking at the new iMacs from a gaming PoV, what spec choices are people making (assuming you are not just getting everything)?

Or to put it a different way, if you had to rank the 21" upgrades / 27" upgrades in order of priority from a gaming PoV, what would your list look like?

Thanks.
N33t is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Nov 30, 2012, 08:35 AM   #2
mchoffa
macrumors 6502
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
2GB 680MX GPU ($150) and max out the ram (32GB for $160 on crucial) and it should handle anything
mchoffa is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Nov 30, 2012, 08:37 AM   #3
tubbymac
macrumors 6502a
 
tubbymac's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
If you're ranking solely based on gaming, the priority would go:

GPU > CPU > RAM > HD

The faster the GPU the more frames per second. The faster the CPU the faster the physics get processed for the more complicated games which will also boost the frame rate (won't help for simpler games). The more RAM the less the swap file has to be accessed causing stuttering in the frame rate. Finally with an SSD instead of an HD game levels will load faster and there will be less stuttering during texture loads.
__________________
rMBP 15 / 21.5 iMac 2011 / iPad Mini / ATV2 / TimeCap / iPhone 5 / Nexus 4 / PS3
tubbymac is offline   3 Reply With Quote
Old Nov 30, 2012, 08:39 AM   #4
mchoffa
macrumors 6502
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
The Verge didn't even up the GPU or ram and they say it's handling everything fine

http://www.theverge.com/2012/11/30/3...view#section_6

----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by tubbymac View Post
GPU > CPU > RAM > HD
do games really take advantage of the i7 over the i5 (hyperthreading)?
mchoffa is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Nov 30, 2012, 08:40 AM   #5
XionCore
macrumors member
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
And remember, this ainīt a gaming machine. The 680MX quite packs a punch, but in 2 years theres no more native resolution battlefield 4 gaming - for sure.
XionCore is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Nov 30, 2012, 08:59 AM   #6
N33t
Thread Starter
macrumors member
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
I appreciate the iMac is not a gaming behemoth, but it is what I want / need and I am keen to spec it out as best I can from a gaming PoV.

On the i5 vs i7 / hyperthreading point, my conclusion from the following article was that it was not a high priority upgrade, but please correct me if I am wrong.

http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2012/...e-extra-juice/
N33t is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Nov 30, 2012, 09:00 AM   #7
tubbymac
macrumors 6502a
 
tubbymac's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by mchoffa View Post
do games really take advantage of the i7 over the i5 (hyperthreading)?
The hyper threading, no, but the pure clock speed difference, yes. For example a game like Starcraft 2 is surprisingly CPU limited once you have enough GPU horsepower to get it to a smooth frame rate. Once the frame rate is smooth, the game only chokes on huge battles with near maximum amounts of units on the the battlefield - because at that point the sheer amount of physics calculations required brings most CPUs to their knees.
__________________
rMBP 15 / 21.5 iMac 2011 / iPad Mini / ATV2 / TimeCap / iPhone 5 / Nexus 4 / PS3
tubbymac is offline   1 Reply With Quote
Old Nov 30, 2012, 09:02 AM   #8
beerglass007
macrumors 6502
 
Join Date: May 2008
How good will the 21.5" highend model be for gaming ?
__________________
iMac maxed 21" 2013", Iphone 5s , Ipad air 128GB , MBA 13" 2013
beerglass007 is offline   1 Reply With Quote
Old Nov 30, 2012, 09:09 AM   #9
forty2j
macrumors 68030
 
forty2j's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: NJ
Quote:
Originally Posted by mchoffa View Post
The Verge didn't even up the GPU or ram and they say it's handling everything fine

http://www.theverge.com/2012/11/30/3...view#section_6[COLOR="#808080"]
They mention trying L4D2 and Portal 2. I wouldn't expect either of those to stress the 675MX too badly, but more intensive games exist (and more will be coming).
__________________
 2012 iMac 3.2GHz 27" 680MX Fusion  iPhone 6  Apple TV 2  iPad Air 
forty2j is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Nov 30, 2012, 09:09 AM   #10
Nors
macrumors newbie
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Remember that the most important component for gaming is the GPU. If you intend to play any modern games on these devices, you want to get the best possible GPU.


Any of the i5/i7 processors will be more than sufficient for gaming.
Nors is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Nov 30, 2012, 09:11 AM   #11
forty2j
macrumors 68030
 
forty2j's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: NJ
Quote:
Originally Posted by beerglass007 View Post
How good will the 21.5" highend model be for gaming ?
About the same as the non-Retina MBP, with a better CPU. It will hold its own, but be quite easy to over-stress.
__________________
 2012 iMac 3.2GHz 27" 680MX Fusion  iPhone 6  Apple TV 2  iPad Air 
forty2j is offline   1 Reply With Quote
Old Nov 30, 2012, 09:29 AM   #12
Fietsbel
macrumors member
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by mchoffa View Post
The Verge didn't even up the GPU or ram and they say it's handling everything fine

http://www.theverge.com/2012/11/30/3...view#section_6

----------



do games really take advantage of the i7 over the i5 (hyperthreading)?
The Verge is far from being objective. The games the have tested aren't recent ones.
My feeling says it's worth it to spend a extra buck to get the higher end GPU. Let's hope sites like toms hardware will publish soon there reviews
Fietsbel is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Nov 30, 2012, 09:32 AM   #13
N33t
Thread Starter
macrumors member
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
So, subject to the caveat that you can upgrade the memory yourself, the priority for the 27" would appear to be:
  • 27-inch: 3.2GHz
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680MX 2GB GDDR5
  • 3.4GHz Quad-core Intel Core i7, Turbo Boost up to 3.9GHz
  • 32GB 1600MHz DDR3 SDRAM - 4x8GB
  • 1TB Fusion Drive
Is the 1TB Fusion the "correct" HD choice?
N33t is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Nov 30, 2012, 09:38 AM   #14
Jingleballz
macrumors newbie
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
That looks good...although I would try to save some money by getting the 32GB of memory outside of apple.

OWC and Crucial has 2x16 (32GB) for $160 bucks. I ordered 8GB and plan to just upgrade when I get my IMac.

Just to let you know, most games only require about 2GB of on board video memory these days. I don't think you'll see a ton of difference in upping it more than 8GB. 16GB is way way more than enough. 32Gb is over kill for video games.

I'm a gamer and here's what I ordered today:

3.4GHz Quad-core Intel Core i7, Turbo Boost up to 3.9GHz
8GB 1600MHz DDR3 SDRAM - 2x4GB
1TB Fusion Drive
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680MX 2GB GDDR5
Apple Magic Mouse
Apple Keyboard with Numeric Keypad (English) & User's Guide
AppleCare Protection Plan for iMac - Auto-enroll

Delivers Dec 24 - Dec 31 by Standard Shipping

Order Total: $2,941.00

Last edited by Jingleballz; Nov 30, 2012 at 10:08 AM.
Jingleballz is offline   1 Reply With Quote
Old Nov 30, 2012, 09:54 AM   #15
Freis968
macrumors 6502a
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Winter Park, Florida
Quote:
Originally Posted by XionCore View Post
And remember, this ainīt a gaming machine.
I disagree sir!

With over 500 hours of gameplay on MW3 alone and just "killin it" literally and figuratively on the battlefield, this statement is extremely invalid.

Battlefied 4 runs just fine on my current iMac as well!
__________________
| iMac 27" i7 | iPad Air | iPhone 5 16GB | Time Capsule 2TB |
Freis968 is offline   4 Reply With Quote
Old Nov 30, 2012, 10:02 AM   #16
N33t
Thread Starter
macrumors member
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Let's try not to get diverted by the is it or is it not a "gaming computer" discussion if possible please.

TYVM @ Jingleballz - that is very helpful advice. Sadly the pricing in the UK seems a bit more agressive (about 1k USD more for the same system if I am reading the Apple UK site correctly).
N33t is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Nov 30, 2012, 10:08 AM   #17
Luap
macrumors 6502a
 
Luap's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Quote:
Originally Posted by XionCore View Post
And remember, this ainīt a gaming machine.
Says who?
It's got decent CPU specs, decent GPU specs (especially when optioned up). There isn't a whole lot that counts against it for gaming now.
Luap is offline   1 Reply With Quote
Old Nov 30, 2012, 10:10 AM   #18
Jingleballz
macrumors newbie
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
If you're going reduce cost, the one thing I wouldn't neglect is the video card. Purely from a gaming perspective. The CPU and HD won't make a huge difference.
Jingleballz is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Nov 30, 2012, 10:13 AM   #19
NMF
macrumors 6502a
 
NMF's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
For the love of God don't waste your money on 32GB of memory. You people recommending that should be ashamed of yourselves. No game on the market requires that much RAM. Hell, even 16GB is overkill. For purely gaming the base 8GB is more than enough.

You do need the high-end with the upgraded GPU though.
__________________
MacBook Air 13" (2013) Mac mini (2011) OS X Server + Drobo 5D
AirPort Time Capsule (2013) iPhone 5 TV 3

Last edited by NMF; Nov 30, 2012 at 10:19 AM.
NMF is offline   5 Reply With Quote
Old Nov 30, 2012, 10:16 AM   #20
bogatyr
macrumors 65816
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jingleballz View Post
OWC and Crucial has 2x16 (32GB) for $160 bucks. I ordered 8GB and plan to just upgrade when I get my IMac.
Wasn't aware there were 16GB SODIMMs out yet, much less at that price point. Are you sure you're looking at SODIMMs and 16GB modules?
bogatyr is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Nov 30, 2012, 10:27 AM   #21
N33t
Thread Starter
macrumors member
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
OK so the consensus would seem to be the 27" priorities are:
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680MX 2GB GDDR5
  • 3.4GHz Quad-core Intel Core i7, Turbo Boost up to 3.9GHz
  • 1TB Fusion Drive
And then manually upgrade RAM later as and when required.
N33t is offline   1 Reply With Quote
Old Nov 30, 2012, 10:48 AM   #22
Mac32
macrumors 6502a
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
I've researched the i7 vs. i5 issue, and the difference in gaming is about 0-4% in 4-core CPUs at same freq. So I ordered the 3.2ghz i5 CPU. Since I don't to video and photo editing, there's practically no difference between the i5 and i7 CPU in daily use. I did go with the 768gb SSD, because SSD makes a huge difference in loading times (just imagine how many times you load a level in a game, there's a lot of waiting there..). But damn, that was expensive. It almost doubled the price of my iMac. Really crappy by Apple to put the buyer in such a predicament..
Mac32 is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Nov 30, 2012, 10:48 AM   #23
Jingleballz
macrumors newbie
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by bogatyr View Post
Wasn't aware there were 16GB SODIMMs out yet, much less at that price point. Are you sure you're looking at SODIMMs and 16GB modules?
Good catch...
Jingleballz is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Nov 30, 2012, 10:50 AM   #24
FuriousGreg
macrumors member
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Quote:
Originally Posted by N33t View Post
  • 1TB Fusion Drive
And then manually upgrade RAM later as and when required.
If you're going to Bootcamp Windoz to play games you won't need a Fusion drive. I got tired of waiting for games to come out inn OSX and just got a copy of W7 and can play whatever I want.
FuriousGreg is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Nov 30, 2012, 10:58 AM   #25
NMF
macrumors 6502a
 
NMF's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Quote:
Originally Posted by N33t View Post
OK so the consensus would seem to be the 27" priorities are:
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680MX 2GB GDDR5
  • 3.4GHz Quad-core Intel Core i7, Turbo Boost up to 3.9GHz
  • 1TB Fusion Drive
And then manually upgrade RAM later as and when required.
Pretty much, but even then I'd go with the i5. Unless you have a workflow that would seriously benefit from hyper-threading the i7 is kinda overkill. The quad core i5 is more than enough beef to run the latest games. Games these days barely tax two cores, let alone four or eight.

For gaming, get the high-end 27" model with the fusion drive and GTX680MX. Those are the only two upgrades you really need.


Quote:
Originally Posted by FuriousGreg View Post
If you're going to Bootcamp Windoz to play games you won't need a Fusion drive. I got tired of waiting for games to come out inn OSX and just got a copy of W7 and can play whatever I want.
Sure, but if you're buying a Mac then you want OSX for day-to-day computing. Windows is just for gaming. If you buy a $2k+ iMac and then boot exclusively into Windows then you're an idiot. If you want a Windows-based machine it is much cheaper to simply build a gaming PC.

OP, I would stick with the Fusion drive. I currently manage an HDD/SSD combo myself, and while it's doable and not a huge hassle I'd rather have the OS do it all for me. I'm looking into activating Fusion on my MBP.
__________________
MacBook Air 13" (2013) Mac mini (2011) OS X Server + Drobo 5D
AirPort Time Capsule (2013) iPhone 5 TV 3
NMF is offline   1 Reply With Quote

Reply
MacRumors Forums > Apple Hardware > Desktops > iMac

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Similar Threads
thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Why do so many people buy iMacs for gaming? Siderz iMac 212 Jun 11, 2014 10:51 PM
Gaming in Parallels with the late 2013 iMacs malvicus iMac 7 Sep 27, 2013 01:04 PM
Are video cards from 20" 2007 iMacs campatible with 24" 2008 iMacs gbuyer iMac 2 Jun 1, 2013 02:51 PM
iPhone 4: Collector's POV Beeplance iPhone 16 Aug 3, 2012 12:50 PM

Forum Jump

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 11:27 AM.

Mac Rumors | Mac | iPhone | iPhone Game Reviews | iPhone Apps

Mobile Version | Fixed | Fluid | Fluid HD
Copyright 2002-2013, MacRumors.com, LLC