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Old Jan 5, 2013, 02:11 PM   #1
ivbaseball06
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Join Date: Nov 2010
Have to return my 27" refurbished - What should I buy?

Whenever the new iMacs were announced I wasn't very impressed. They gave it a minor upgrade in speed but I wasn't a fan of the new body (potential heat issues, hard to self-repair, etc.). So I went ahead and bought the following refurbished iMac:

http://store.apple.com/us/product/G0M73LL/A

This computer has been great and it's everything I wanted. I don't mind the older style since it's just sitting on my desk. However, a few days ago I got a few dead pixels. Since I'm still within the holiday return period, I have the option to return it.

My two options are to re-buy the same refurbished model when it pops up again, or to go with the new one. Here's some questions that I have:

1. When I ordered the refurbished iMac, it actually came with 8 GB RAM (was listed for 4) and 2 GB VRAM (was listed for 1). What are the odds that if I order another one it will also have these upgrades? Is there any way that I can get Apple to swap for one that specifically does?

2. Which of these is going to be faster for day-to-day use (not necessarily heavy load CPU intensive stuff)
--2011 3.4 GHz i7 sandy bridge, 256 GB SSD, 16 GB RAM, AMD Radeon HD 6970M graphics with 2GB memory

OR
--2012 2.9 GHz i5 ivy bridge, 1 TB Fusion Drive, 16 GB RAM, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660M with 512MB

3. Have real-world tests so far shown that the fusion drive is comparable in speed to just a SSD? I can live on just 256 GB, I don't need all of the space.

4. Have there been any heat issues with the new 27" models? Have there been any other issues that are common?

5. How difficult (compared to the 2011 model) is it to open up and replace a hard drive? This is most likely the only repare I would ever do to it, so that's why I ask.

6. Is there any chance of me talking Apple in to just replacing the LCD screen? If they do, is there concern over getting dust inside the screen?

Thanks in advance for your advice!
__________________
-27" Mid-2011 iMac, 3.4 GHz Intel Quad-Core i7, 16GB 1333 MHz DDR3, 250GB SSD, AMD Radeon HD 6970M 2GB VRAM
-16GB White iPhone 5, 16GB White iPad 2, Apple 1TB Time Capsule
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Old Jan 5, 2013, 03:42 PM   #2
AndiS.
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Join Date: Dec 2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by ivbaseball06 View Post
Whenever the new iMacs were announced I wasn't very impressed. They gave it a minor upgrade in speed but I wasn't a fan of the new body (potential heat issues, hard to self-repair, etc.). So I went ahead and bought the following refurbished iMac:

http://store.apple.com/us/product/G0M73LL/A

This computer has been great and it's everything I wanted. I don't mind the older style since it's just sitting on my desk. However, a few days ago I got a few dead pixels. Since I'm still within the holiday return period, I have the option to return it.

My two options are to re-buy the same refurbished model when it pops up again, or to go with the new one. Here's some questions that I have:

1. When I ordered the refurbished iMac, it actually came with 8 GB RAM (was listed for 4) and 2 GB VRAM (was listed for 1). What are the odds that if I order another one it will also have these upgrades? Is there any way that I can get Apple to swap for one that specifically does?

2. Which of these is going to be faster for day-to-day use (not necessarily heavy load CPU intensive stuff)
--2011 3.4 GHz i7 sandy bridge, 256 GB SSD, 16 GB RAM, AMD Radeon HD 6970M graphics with 2GB memory

OR
--2012 2.9 GHz i5 ivy bridge, 1 TB Fusion Drive, 16 GB RAM, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660M with 512MB

3. Have real-world tests so far shown that the fusion drive is comparable in speed to just a SSD? I can live on just 256 GB, I don't need all of the space.

4. Have there been any heat issues with the new 27" models? Have there been any other issues that are common?

5. How difficult (compared to the 2011 model) is it to open up and replace a hard drive? This is most likely the only repare I would ever do to it, so that's why I ask.

6. Is there any chance of me talking Apple in to just replacing the LCD screen? If they do, is there concern over getting dust inside the screen?

Thanks in advance for your advice!
From personal experience and from what I've read on the forums there aren't any heat issues at all with the high end models, even after hours of gaming. The speed of the Fusion Drive has been fantastic for me so far (about 320 write and 420 read), but I'm sure it comes down to how you use your computer in the end.
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Old Jan 5, 2013, 04:07 PM   #3
myuserid08
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ivbaseball06 View Post
Whenever the new iMacs were announced I wasn't very impressed. They gave it a minor upgrade in speed but I wasn't a fan of the new body (potential heat issues, hard to self-repair, etc.). So I went ahead and bought the following refurbished iMac:

http://store.apple.com/us/product/G0M73LL/A

This computer has been great and it's everything I wanted. I don't mind the older style since it's just sitting on my desk. However, a few days ago I got a few dead pixels. Since I'm still within the holiday return period, I have the option to return it.

My two options are to re-buy the same refurbished model when it pops up again, or to go with the new one. Here's some questions that I have:

1. When I ordered the refurbished iMac, it actually came with 8 GB RAM (was listed for 4) and 2 GB VRAM (was listed for 1). What are the odds that if I order another one it will also have these upgrades? Is there any way that I can get Apple to swap for one that specifically does?

2. Which of these is going to be faster for day-to-day use (not necessarily heavy load CPU intensive stuff)
--2011 3.4 GHz i7 sandy bridge, 256 GB SSD, 16 GB RAM, AMD Radeon HD 6970M graphics with 2GB memory

OR
--2012 2.9 GHz i5 ivy bridge, 1 TB Fusion Drive, 16 GB RAM, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660M with 512MB

3. Have real-world tests so far shown that the fusion drive is comparable in speed to just a SSD? I can live on just 256 GB, I don't need all of the space.

4. Have there been any heat issues with the new 27" models? Have there been any other issues that are common?

5. How difficult (compared to the 2011 model) is it to open up and replace a hard drive? This is most likely the only repare I would ever do to it, so that's why I ask.

6. Is there any chance of me talking Apple in to just replacing the LCD screen? If they do, is there concern over getting dust inside the screen?

Thanks in advance for your advice!
Does it say 4GB or 8GB on the box ?
If it says 4GB, remove the "free" 4GB stick from the mac and install it in your replacement.
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Old Jan 5, 2013, 05:05 PM   #4
boy-better-know
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My 27" runs cool constantly unless I am playing a game.
And the fusion drive is really nice, you will notice a difference if you are coming from a spinning hard drive, but compared to my rMBP with SSD it is a bit slower, but not by much and I am completely in love with this iMac.

I couldn't recommend it enough.
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Old Jan 5, 2013, 05:20 PM   #5
ivbaseball06
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Quote:
Originally Posted by boy-better-know View Post
My 27" runs cool constantly unless I am playing a game.
And the fusion drive is really nice, you will notice a difference if you are coming from a spinning hard drive, but compared to my rMBP with SSD it is a bit slower, but not by much and I am completely in love with this iMac.

I couldn't recommend it enough.
Well I would be coming from the current iMac with a 256 SSD in it. Do you think the fusion drive is noticeably slower than that?

----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by myuserid08 View Post
Does it say 4GB or 8GB on the box ?
If it says 4GB, remove the "free" 4GB stick from the mac and install it in your replacement.
Good call, I will do this for sure. It does only say 4 GB on the packing slip. Still not thrilled about possibly giving up the upgraded video card though.

----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by AndiS. View Post
From personal experience and from what I've read on the forums there aren't any heat issues at all with the high end models, even after hours of gaming. The speed of the Fusion Drive has been fantastic for me so far (about 320 write and 420 read), but I'm sure it comes down to how you use your computer in the end.
I just ran the BlackMagic speed test and got about 175 write and 220 read. I feel like that's not very good for the stock SSD in the 2011 model. Then again, day to day performance is pretty good. Do you think the fusion drive is that much better?
__________________
-27" Mid-2011 iMac, 3.4 GHz Intel Quad-Core i7, 16GB 1333 MHz DDR3, 250GB SSD, AMD Radeon HD 6970M 2GB VRAM
-16GB White iPhone 5, 16GB White iPad 2, Apple 1TB Time Capsule
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Old Jan 5, 2013, 05:48 PM   #6
joe-h2o
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So many people worried about heat issues!

As other people have said this new top end 27" is virtually a fridge, even at full load for hours.

Several hours of Planetside 2 with the 680MX on high settings and it's cool to the touch, except near the exhaust vent where it is warm but not scorching.

There are no heat issues with the new model it seems.
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Old Jan 5, 2013, 06:01 PM   #7
ivbaseball06
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joe-h2o View Post
So many people worried about heat issues!

As other people have said this new top end 27" is virtually a fridge, even at full load for hours.

Several hours of Planetside 2 with the 680MX on high settings and it's cool to the touch, except near the exhaust vent where it is warm but not scorching.

There are no heat issues with the new model it seems.
Okay, thanks for the info. Do you know how accessible the HD is if it ever died and I wanted to replace?
__________________
-27" Mid-2011 iMac, 3.4 GHz Intel Quad-Core i7, 16GB 1333 MHz DDR3, 250GB SSD, AMD Radeon HD 6970M 2GB VRAM
-16GB White iPhone 5, 16GB White iPad 2, Apple 1TB Time Capsule
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