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Old May 7, 2013, 12:44 PM   #1
benjamwes
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Question 27" iMac,but with no fusion?

I have an opportunity on eBay to get a 27" with a 3.4GHz i7 processor, 32GB RAM and 1TB HDD (7200rpm) for 1,400, but this does not come with a fusion drive.
How important is the fusion drive?

Or I could get a 21.5" iMac with a 2.9GHz i5, 16GB RAM and the fusion for 1,512

Or a 21.5" with 2.9GHz i5, 16GB RAM and no fusion for 1,350.
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Old May 7, 2013, 12:51 PM   #2
Nalmond92
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Originally Posted by benjamwes View Post
I have an opportunity on eBay to get a 27" with a 3.4GHz i7 processor, 32GB RAM and 1TB HDD (7200rpm) for 1,400, but this does not come with a fusion drive.
How important is the fusion drive?

Or I could get a 21.5" iMac with a 2.9GHz i5, 16GB RAM and the fusion for 1,512

Or a 21.5" with 2.9GHz i5, 16GB RAM and no fusion for 1,350.
Depends, what do you want the computer for?
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Old May 7, 2013, 01:00 PM   #3
benjamwes
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Depends, what do you want the computer for?
I would like to get into film making so I'd be using Adobe CS6 (Premiere, After Effects..), a bit of gaming, and just general use (school work, watching videos, music etc.). I know the i7 is not really needed but for the price it just adds more power towards rendering videos and gaming. The 32GB RAM is a bit overkill (I was originally going to buy 16GB, but since this is on eBay and for quite a good deal it looks good.) The only bad thing is that there's no fusion.
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Old May 7, 2013, 01:32 PM   #4
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The fusion drive will just be faster. I think a standard drive would be fine for some light video work, especially with 32GB of RAM. You could always upgrade to a fusion drive down the road, or just go straight SSD. I would be a little weary of buying an iMac on eBay though.
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Old May 7, 2013, 01:41 PM   #5
Shane1905
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Originally Posted by benjamwes View Post
I would like to get into film making so I'd be using Adobe CS6 (Premiere, After Effects..), a bit of gaming, and just general use (school work, watching videos, music etc.). I know the i7 is not really needed but for the price it just adds more power towards rendering videos and gaming. The 32GB RAM is a bit overkill (I was originally going to buy 16GB, but since this is on eBay and for quite a good deal it looks good.) The only bad thing is that there's no fusion.
What graphics card does it come with? I wouldn't worry about the RAM side of it too much as that is fairly cheap these days, only upgradable yourself with the 27" though.

----------

Might also be worth keeping an eye on the refurb store too. No iMacs in the UK one at the moment. Not sure if this is how it works but mine may be on there soon. Went in for a new hard drive last week and came back with a small dint on the bottom right corner. They are ordering me a new one to replace it but not sure what will happen with this one. It works a treat so don't see why they would scrap it. Any one on here know if it would end up in the refurb store? Its a 3.4Ghz i7 3tb fusion with a 680mx, I've got 24gb of RAM but will be going back with 8gb as thats what it came with.
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Old May 7, 2013, 01:45 PM   #6
benjamwes
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What graphics card does it come with? I wouldn't worry about the RAM side of it too much as that is fairly cheap these days, only upgradable yourself with the 27" though.

----------

Might also be worth keeping an eye on the refurb store too. No iMacs in the UK one at the moment. Not sure if this is how it works but mine may be on there soon. Went in for a new hard drive last week and came back with a small dint on the bottom right corner. They are ordering me a new one to replace it but not sure what will happen with this one. It works a treat so don't see why they would scrap it. Any one on here know if it would end up in the refurb store? Its a 3.4Ghz i7 3tb fusion with a 680mx, I've got 24gb of RAM but will be going back with 8gb as thats what it came with.
It comes with the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 675MX, which seems better than the 650M that comes with the 21.5" model. I probably won't get it though as it is from eBay...
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Old May 7, 2013, 01:49 PM   #7
Shane1905
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one more also...
http://www.mikewilson.cc/2010/08/18/...tudent-though/

This actually works, I ordered mine using it
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Old May 7, 2013, 01:55 PM   #8
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one more also...
http://www.mikewilson.cc/2010/08/18/...tudent-though/

This actually works, I ordered mine using it
Thanks, that looks really good. I was under the impression that I could easily order mine using an education discount as I'm still at school, but I'm sure I'll be able to use my local university for that link.
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Old May 7, 2013, 01:58 PM   #9
Shane1905
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Thanks, that looks really good. I was under the impression that I could easily order mine using an education discount as I'm still at school, but I'm sure I'll be able to use my local university for that link.
Cool, at least you can use it at home instead of from the campus network. I used my local university and saved about 300. Plus the apple care is free/discounted for tech support.
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Old May 7, 2013, 02:30 PM   #10
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Cool, at least you can use it at home instead of from the campus network. I used my local university and saved about 300. Plus the apple care is free/discounted for tech support.
I might just try to get the 21.5" with the standard i5, 16GB RAM and 1TB Fusion for as cheap as possible using the student discount
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Old May 7, 2013, 03:14 PM   #11
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If you are planning to do a lot of video you really want the i7. Rendering and transcoding time is the major time sink, so the more CPU the better.

OTOH, the Fusion drive won't really help much when you are really just streaming video files, especially large files. The CPU will be running 100% while the hard drive just coasts.
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Old May 7, 2013, 03:35 PM   #12
Mitch619
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I edit with final cut pro x and I use an external ssd via a usb 3.0 with sata iii interface.

This works better than a fusion drive could ever hope to.
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Old May 7, 2013, 06:06 PM   #13
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Thanks, that looks really good. I was under the impression that I could easily order mine using an education discount as I'm still at school, but I'm sure I'll be able to use my local university for that link.
Just to point out, you have to actually be enrolled at the University in order to get the discount. I live on campus at my University, so I had it shipped to a University address, hence they didn't ask for evidence. However if it's being shipped to a residential address, don't be surprised if they ask for evidence. Also if you're found out your warranty could be void etc.

Safer if you have a friend who's actually enrolled at a uni who can order it for you.

As for the fusion drive, it is the biggest upgrade you could probably make with the iMac, I've just ordered mine with it.
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Old May 7, 2013, 06:32 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by benjamwes View Post
I have an opportunity on eBay to get a 27" with a 3.4GHz i7 processor, 32GB RAM and 1TB HDD (7200rpm) for 1,400, but this does not come with a fusion drive.
How important is the fusion drive?

Or I could get a 21.5" iMac with a 2.9GHz i5, 16GB RAM and the fusion for 1,512

Or a 21.5" with 2.9GHz i5, 16GB RAM and no fusion for 1,350.
I'd be careful. 1400 for an almost new Mac that was sold for 2300 seems to be too good to be true. Read the description carefully, ask if it isn't clear enough, and find out what eBay will or will not do for you if things go wrong.
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Old May 7, 2013, 06:44 PM   #15
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I'd be careful. 1400 for an almost new Mac that was sold for 2300 seems to be too good to be true. Read the description carefully, ask if it isn't clear enough, and find out what eBay will or will not do for you if things go wrong.
That's good advice. If I could add to that, make sure it's to pay for the item when you go to pickup, or authorise the paypal transaction after seeing the machine during pickup.
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Old May 7, 2013, 07:15 PM   #16
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Just to point out, you have to actually be enrolled at the University in order to get the discount. I live on campus at my University, so I had it shipped to a University address, hence they didn't ask for evidence. However if it's being shipped to a residential address, don't be surprised if they ask for evidence. Also if you're found out your warranty could be void etc.
I'd check the Terms of Sale (available on the website). I don't know what they are in the UK, but in the US it used to be that if they discovered you didn't qualify they would bill you the difference. No voiding of warranty. However the Terms have changed. They no longer check. But the discounts are not as good as they used to be!

Here they check for ID in the stores, but no checks appear to be made for online purchases (I have neither a university address nor use my university email address, but I do qualify!)
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Old May 8, 2013, 09:45 AM   #17
benjamwes
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Well I'm kind of going away from the idea of buying from eBay, but to buy a 21.5" with 16GB RAM and a fusion drive from apple costs 1,512 which is a lot of money for me. The i7 brings it up to 1,662!
So realistically I'm looking at buying one with just the 16GB RAM for 1,350 at maximum.
Does anyone know if there's a place I could buy one for cheaper apart from the refurbished store?
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Old May 8, 2013, 10:33 AM   #18
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Does anyone know if there's a place I could buy one for cheaper apart from the refurbished store?
Any reason you don't want to buy from the refurb store? I'd much prefer to buy one from there compared to a new one from any other reseller or eBay. With those, you don't know whether you are getting a refurb or not!
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Old May 8, 2013, 10:35 AM   #19
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Any reason you don't want to buy from the refurb store? I'd much prefer to buy one from there compared to a new one from any other reseller or eBay. With those, you don't know whether you are getting a refurb or not!
I have nothing against getting a refurb, it's just that there's no iMacs in the refurb store at the moment :P

EDIT: There are a few 27", but they're out of my budget.

Last edited by benjamwes; May 8, 2013 at 10:41 AM.
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Old May 8, 2013, 05:53 PM   #20
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I have nothing against getting a refurb, it's just that there's no iMacs in the refurb store at the moment :P

EDIT: There are a few 27", but they're out of my budget.
i hear you; Here in the US, the refurb selection seems to restock daily. There is usualy just one Imac with GMX680 in the selection but when that goes, another one shows up the next day.
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Old May 10, 2013, 07:55 PM   #21
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The computer linked below is a much better option then the ones your are listing that is just barely out of you budget. Maybe if you save a bit more you can get this one.

http://store.apple.com/uk/product/G0...-intel-core-i5
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Old May 10, 2013, 10:48 PM   #22
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I'm poised to get a 27" iMac i5 with Fusion Drive. In North America, the computer costs $1900. FD adds another $200. My singular purpose is do digital photo editing. For that, FD is almost a necessity because of typical file sizes of digital photographs. i5 is adequate processing speed, though. Film work might benefit from an i7 processor, so you should ask around about that.

There's an Apple Store 4 miles from my home. I went there and did a side-by-side startup test on a spinning HD and FD iMac. FD booted in about 13 seconds. The regular hard-drive required about 45 seconds. Starting a big application, such as PhotoShop, showed similar differences.

Keep in mind the vast advantages of USB-3 ports, however, can outweigh these differences and make it easy to compensate for not having FD by using an SSD external disk.
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