Register FAQ / Rules Forum Spy Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read
Go Back   MacRumors Forums > Special Interests > Visual Media > Design and Graphics

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old Dec 10, 2012, 09:49 PM   #1
Sassers
macrumors newbie
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Question about new iMac graphics

Hello!

I'm thinking about switching from a Windows PC to the new iMac. For space consideration, I'd really love to get the 21.5". I'm concerned about the graphics card, though - the GT 650M 512. I create content for a virtual world (Second Life), mainly using Photoshop CS 5.1 extended. I believe that card will be fine for PS and tolerable for Second Life, but next year I might start working in either Blender or Maya creating mesh 3D items.

Does anyone have any experience working on the smaller iMac using 3D programs? I've got the 27" spec'd out, and am pretty sure that will handle Blender/Maya ok, but I keep going back to the 21.5" because my space is so limited.

With either size I'd go with the 1TB Fusion drive, and could bump up to the i7 if that would make a difference in how the card might process 3d renders.

Any thoughts would be appreciated.

Thanks!
Sassers is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Dec 11, 2012, 03:06 PM   #2
fig
macrumors 6502a
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Houston, TX
Depending what you're doing, you should be fine. I do some Maya work now on a 20" iMac from late 2006, it isn't fast by any means but it's usable for character animation.

I think the need for horsepower gets a bit overblown by folks who think they need more than they really do, the new iMacs are pretty darn capable and will handle your everyday Photoshop and 3d work just fine. Load it up with RAM and you're good to go.
__________________
figdigital | @figdigital | dribbble
fig is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Dec 11, 2012, 04:11 PM   #3
Sassers
Thread Starter
macrumors newbie
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
That's good to hear. That puts the 21.5 back into consideration, which I'm really happy about. I know it wouldn't be the optimum, but as long as there's a chance it's doable I'm good.

Thanks for your input!
Sassers is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Dec 11, 2012, 04:36 PM   #4
fig
macrumors 6502a
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Houston, TX
Yeah, if you're just doing pretty simple modeling, rendering, etc., which is what it sounds like, you shouldn't have any issues whatsoever.

And glad to help.
__________________
figdigital | @figdigital | dribbble
fig is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Dec 11, 2012, 04:40 PM   #5
Renzatic
macrumors 604
 
Renzatic's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Who puts the washers in the woods?
I think you could push it pretty hard, since 3D work is generally (though not always) more CPU driven than GPU. If you prefer realtime 3D over prerendered you might run into problems once you start getting into heavier scenes, but you'll still be able to push it surprisingly far.

Last edited by Renzatic; Dec 12, 2012 at 12:32 PM. Reason: GPU DAMNIT!
Renzatic is online now   0 Reply With Quote
Old Dec 11, 2012, 05:54 PM   #6
Sassers
Thread Starter
macrumors newbie
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Thanks! I'm still dithering (mainly now because of the 650 card with only 512 VRAM) but the size of the 21.5 is so appealing...

Decisions, decisions
Sassers is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Dec 12, 2012, 12:41 PM   #7
Renzatic
macrumors 604
 
Renzatic's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Who puts the washers in the woods?
Honestly, the 21-inch is alright, not great, not bad, but with 3D work, having access to more POWAH wouldn't hurt anything but your wallet.

My personal opinion, of course, but I've never found Apple's entry level/low end offerings to be all that appealing. For me, the world of Macs begins only at the middle-high, when the price to performance ratio starts balancing out a little better. 21 inch iMacs, 13 inch MBPs. Nuh uh. They're too expensive for what you're getting.

If I were you, I'd consider plunking down the cash for a 15" rMBP and a 21" screen to hook it up to. You get roughly same amount of processing power, a better graphics card to fall back on, and still save on space considerations. It's more expensive, but you'll likely be happier in the long run.
Renzatic is online now   1 Reply With Quote
Old Dec 12, 2012, 02:26 PM   #8
Sassers
Thread Starter
macrumors newbie
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Oh, boy - I never thought of that option! I'm so conditioned to thinking I needed a desktop of some sort! I was almost resigned to the 27" but the rMBP might do the trick as well! Heading off to take a look at those.
Sassers is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Dec 13, 2012, 07:12 AM   #9
mexico
macrumors member
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
If your just modeling you can surely get away with the lowest specced imac. However, if you are wanting to do any sort of animation or physics you will absolutley want the best graphics performance you can get. Also if your going for photorealistic renders youll want a hardcore cpu.
mexico is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Dec 13, 2012, 07:42 PM   #10
Sassers
Thread Starter
macrumors newbie
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Yep - after looking at the options, I've pretty much decided I need to go with the 27" - I'm hoping to keep this for a few years and don't want to be in the position of regretting not bumping up CPU or graphics down the road.

Thanks everyone for your input!
Sassers is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Dec 22, 2012, 09:07 AM   #11
blanka
macrumors 65816
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Stay on a PC. Pick a compact Shuttle PC with a GTX670 (the best price/performance card also baked at 28nm and outperforming the 980M of BTO imacs) and a 22 inch Eizo 1920x1200 pixel display (best workspace at small screen) if you want a great compact screen and 3D power. Second Life is really demanding. You will also have the benefit of faster 3D support (DirectX vs OpenGL) and more 3D software for Windows.

Last edited by blanka; Dec 22, 2012 at 09:14 AM.
blanka is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Dec 22, 2012, 06:04 PM   #12
Sassers
Thread Starter
macrumors newbie
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Well, I just came home with my iMac! I'll give it a shot and see if its enough for the relatively small amount of 3D work I might do. Second Life is ridiculously taxing on graphics cards, but hoping this 680mx will tolerate it all right.

I had never heard of Shuttle PC before - that's definitely one i'll look at if I go back to windows - thanks for the heads up on that!
Sassers is offline   0 Reply With Quote

Reply
MacRumors Forums > Special Interests > Visual Media > Design and Graphics

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Similar Threads
thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Late 2009 27" iMac Graphics Card DYING AGAIN. Which new iMac to replace it? DracoDWS iMac 0 Sep 29, 2013 08:50 PM
iMac graphics card service/replacement and warranty question Production675 iMac 2 Aug 4, 2013 12:49 PM
Graphics question... mitchellm MacBook Pro 3 Jul 6, 2013 12:30 PM
Graphics Card Question? Futhark MacBook Pro 5 Nov 29, 2012 02:07 AM
Graphics rMBP Question drmountaindeww MacBook Pro 20 Jul 2, 2012 02:46 AM

Forum Jump

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 01:38 PM.

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

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