g5 iMac or save for PowerMac

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by lukasbarton, Sep 1, 2004.

  1. lukasbarton macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2004
    #1
    Here's the thing, i'm an art student currently learning after effects, shake, and maybe even motion. I basically have the cash now to get a 17" g5 iMac. should i save up a little more cash to go for more screen real estate with the 20" or just wait about 6 months and go all out on the powermac. i dont want the imac to last me forever as a workstation, and dont even know if it will be sufficient with 2gigs of ram to run shake or motion. i plan on upgrading again after i get a full time job and graduate from school in 2 years. i just want a machine that can run shake and motion at home since i commute to school and dont have constant access to the labs. anyone have any idea how those programs will run with this machine based on the rev a g5 powermacs. i know the 5200 doesnt help but i wont be using this machine for gaming so lets not start that rant again. any input is greatly appreciated as this will be a switcher machine for me and i dont want to be disappointed with my purchase.
     
  2. vraxtus macrumors 65816

    vraxtus

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2004
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #2
    If you really need a lot of power, get the PowerMac... my vote would go there.

    But if you plan on upgrading in 2 years... I think the new iMacs should provide you with "acceptable" performance.
     
  3. codycartoon macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2002
    #3
    I would wait tell you can see the iMac's in person before you make your decision. The iMac would be more than suitable for two years and the sooner you start creating with it the better. It seriously is a very good deal, I would try to save up for a 20 inch, you have a month tell they hit stores (maybe more).

    If you only want it for two years then what's the purpose of saving up for 6 months? You will spend a lot of money for a machine you will only have for a year and a half.

    Don't let the "friendley" image of the iMac get to you, it may be easy to use but it has the specs of a serious proffesional machine.

    It is also a great value.

    -cody
     
  4. BakedBeans macrumors 68040

    BakedBeans

    Joined:
    May 6, 2004
    Location:
    What's Your Favorite Posish
    #4
    yeah it will run shake and motion fine (with a gig of ram at least) not as good as a powermac would but you wouldnt find a HUGE difference unless your using shake professionally... shake fcp fce and psp all work well on my pbook 1.5
     
  5. Jo-Kun macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2003
    Location:
    Antwerp-Belgium
    #5
    I think the iMac is a good machine, especially when you save for the 20"

    maybe the monitor-spanning-hack works on this one to, so you could add a second monitor (wich may come handy for opening al the tools on one screen and work on the other one)

    for now I use only 1,5GB of ram in my G5 and it runs FCPro nicely (ok more ram is allways better)

    I'm allso no gamer so I'm pleased with the 5200 in mine... I hooked up a 20" and a 17" on it without any problems... for me the only need for an upgrade there would be when I can afford a 30" CinemaDisplay :-D

    in 2 years you could buy a more powerfull mac and keep this one as 'back-up' to work on when the new one is doing large calculations or sell it for a good price due to the fact that a mac keeps its value much longer than any PC.

    I bought the G5 because I needed it (someone stole my PowerBook and I needed something new and while I was at it I chose for the more expensive but future-proof system...) but if the iMac G5 would have been available then I would have chosen that one instead because its powerfull enough for me & cheaper than for instance the 'cheapest' G5 + 20" cinema display...
     
  6. bobpensik macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2003
    Location:
    Calgary, AB
    #6
    I would get a PowerMac if i were in your situation. You obviously are going to NEED the power of the PM and you would greatly benefit having a Dual Processor system. And if you get a PM in 2 years you migh tnot HAVE to upgrade, you may want to, but that system should do well for you for many years to come!

    Go for the PM, you won't regret it when you are knee deep in projects where the extra power will save you time and your sanity!
     
  7. lukasbarton thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2004
    #7
    i think you misunderstood me or maybe i wasnt clear. if i waited the 6 months and bought a powermac i would be using it for more than a year and a half, hopefully double that. the iMac would be a temporary and more cost effective solution to get me through school with a decent machine that would be approximately $1000-1500 less than a dual 2 or 2.5 powermac with 2-4 gigs of ram. plus i dont see the imac id be specing out becoming obsolete for a good 4 years time so it would still act as second machine for me when i buy my dual-dualcore g6 :D after i graduate. its pretty bad that im convincing myself already before seeing any benchmarks or using the machine at all. keep the responses coming
     
  8. lukasbarton thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2004
    #8
    money shouldnt be as tight as it is now once i graduate. the only thing really holding me back from saving the $1000 and going with the imac is being sure that the machine will allow me to do my school work for the next 2 years. it doesnt have to be the end all machine since i can render out at school but i wouldnt like to be a slug in shake or after effects. although i shouldnt really complain since the machine im running now only has 1.5gb ram and an athlon 2100+. i know motion has the 5200 listed as compatible but how will that program run with 2 gigs of ram and a single processor? of course it would be slower than a dual proc system with similar specs but slow enough to warrant waiting out a whole semester and the extra cash?
     
  9. zim macrumors 65816

    zim

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2002
    #9
    how long will you have to save up? I would say go with the iMac. I run Maya, FCP, DVD Studio Pro, ect... and have not problems. Yes it will be slower but I think that is an obvious prediction. Don't let not having a computer slow your creative flow ;) ... go for the iMac and then start saving for the PowerMac :D

    THEN, once you have the PowerMac, the iMac can be a presentation machine for gallery exhibits :)
     
  10. BakedBeans macrumors 68040

    BakedBeans

    Joined:
    May 6, 2004
    Location:
    What's Your Favorite Posish
    #10
    a dual 1.8 wont be THAT much faster, and 2 gb of ram is a huge ammount, anymore and you will have to use all of those apps at once to need anymore, trust me the 1.8g5 is a very very fast machine...
     
  11. dieselg4 macrumors regular

    dieselg4

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2003
    Location:
    Rockin' Pittsburgh!
    #11
    There is also a substantial cost difference here too. If you were going to save for the 20" iMac, you should really only compare that to getting a G5 1.8 (at least) AND a 20" display, and as SOOO many peolpe have pointed out, the 20" dispay is $1299.
    Personally, If I were to buy a 20" display, I'd get it w/ a G5 attached to it for $600. Even with the slower bus, its prob. about as fast as the previous 1.6 Powermac.
     
  12. Little Endian macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2003
    Location:
    Honolulu
    #12
    I would get the Power Mac if I were you. Motion reccomends at least a 128MB Video Card.

    Read This
    http://www.barefeats.com/motion.html

    The Graphics Card in the imac is not upgradeble and the Geforce FX5200 is poky in Comparison to the best cards today in fact The Geforce 6800Ultra is litterally 2-8 times faster depending on what you are doing.

    Motion also Recommends 2GB or more of RAM. It should also be noted that the only way to Max out the imac's RAM is to buy 2 1GB sticks since there are only two slots and they are expensive. It would Cost at least $400 to bring the imac up to 2GB. 512MB sticks are considerably Cheaper.

    I currently use an imac and I have owned 3 since 2000 and although I was seriously tempted buy the new imac G5's price point I know it will only be good enough for about 2 years before I start pulling my hair again.
     
  13. lukasbarton thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2004
    #13
    thats not necessarily true as i have a 21" crt i could use with the pmac but i understand your point as i would want to upgrade eventually. this is looking like a better deal every day but i would really like to hear from some people who use these programs on a day to day basis.
     
  14. Little Endian macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2003
    Location:
    Honolulu
    #14
    http://www.barefeats.com/g5.html

    Read these benchmarks. Dual Processors are deffinitley the way to go in fact in certain cases a Power Mac G4 1GHz Dualie can still beat out a Single Processor 1.6 or 1.8Ghz G5.

    PowerMacs can litteraly last you twice as long before needing to upgrade. I was tempted to buy the New imac but I'll wait to get a PowerMac G5 instead.
     
  15. lukasbarton thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2004
    #15
    ok i spec'd out a 20 inch imac and a dual 1.8 powermac to have the same specs including video card (for arguments sake) and they came in at $1959 imac and $2049 for the powermac. these prices both increase by roughly $500 when i add two 1gb sticks of crucial to each. there are positives and negatives to each machine. the imac comes with what seems to be a gorgeous 20 inch monitor and its an aio machine that i should still be able to use for internet/ichat/ilife apps for 5 years easily in any room of the house. one downside is of course the video card which on the powermac i would start with the $45 upgrade to 9600xt and eventually go 6800 ultra once the price came down. the other downside would be the performance hit i would take in programs like motion and shake. from the link provided i can see the difference in motion but im still not convinced it will be as significant in shake and after effects, since as someone else noted 2gb is still a healthy amount of ram. i love how i contradict myself :rolleyes: . i just brought up a positive for the powermac since even the dual 1.8 lets me upgrade to up to 4gb of ram which would be used in any of the 3 programs i plan to use most. but these upgrades in ram and gpu will add up to nearly $1000, which could be much better saved towards my next, true workstation that i plan to purchase once i graduate or put into that fund towards a 23 or 30 inch cinema display. i need to face the facts here. the industry that ive chosen practically requires a new machine every two years, i feel as though i should use my first mac purchase to invest in a computer that will last long as a media/ word processor/internet machine because by the time i graduate, this dual g5 wont be obsolete, but im sure it wont be the powerhouse it is today. with the imac i already accept that fate and have a much more aesthetically pleasing machine with a MUCH smaller footprint that will do its initial intention for quite some time. sorry for the rant, feel free to counter as im still not sure what i want to do.
     
  16. sigamy macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2003
    Location:
    NJ USA
    #16
    If you can wait 6 months do so and see what the Rev B iMac brings. I'm sure there will be a better video card in there, or at least a BTO option.

    If they keep the same price that will make a real sweet deal.
     
  17. lukasbarton thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2004
    #17
    i can't really wait another 6 months as that will bring us into march and my second semester ends in april so that would kill a whole year. plus, these imacs will be in high demand until december so an update in march seems unlikely
     
  18. Little Endian macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2003
    Location:
    Honolulu
    #18
    imacs are Generally updated every 9 months or so. A revision B would undoubtedly offer a better Video Card but I can imagine it would still be only marginally better and worse yet still not upgradeble.
     
  19. wPod macrumors 68000

    wPod

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2003
    Location:
    Denver, CO
    #19
    i havent used the apps you are talking about, but if they are need more graphics power id go with the PM. the PM is certainly more upgradable for future use. so you can get a plain PM now, then in a year upgrade the ram then in two years upgrade the video card to whatever is powerfull then. i would say get the iMac only if you had no chance to save more for a PM and just wanted to get a good machine right now. otherwise waiting a little longer and spending the money on a more powerfull PM will be worth it!
     
  20. budaapple macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2004
    Location:
    Ill.
    #20
    G-5 dual Refurb?

    Why not buy the dual G-5 refurb for $1699 and buy a cheap CRT monitor and save for the LCD to buy in six months. That way you are working with all the apps you want right now and can upgrade later to a better screen. Right now the 20" aluminum is refurb priced at $1099. The older style (plastic my fav.) can be had for 7-800 on ebay or thru this forum.
    Seems to make the most sense.
    My 2 cents
     
  21. munchmime macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2003
    #21
    Correct me If i'm Wrong

    But, isn't a G5 iMac almost exactly what some people got when they bought their G5 PM when they came out, except, this comes with a monitor, and NO expansion room?

    So in terms of thinking of it that way, If you were to buy a 1.8 PM, or A 1.6, for the price they still sell for, you are in a way getting ripped, due to the fact you can get almost all that power and a monitor for about the same price.

    Also correct me here, if the new PM's weren't dual configurations, would you even say that you would get a PM over a iMac G5, and really truly mean it? If there were the original 1.6's and 1.8's you would only say your getting one of those just so you look good on the boards; while you would most likely get the iMac g5 that comes with a monitor, and max the ram.

    To me it's not a question of what is going to be better. We all know that a DUAL is better, but if your going to settle for a Single Processor PM or even the dual 1.8, then the g5 iMac is probably more suited to ALMOST ANYONES finances.

    I think that the G5 iMac is going to get a "bad rap" from the lot of you just because it is an iMac. If they introduced it as a mini Powermac 99.99% of this board would be having an orgasm drooling over the pictures.

    So in all, I don't understand the slight bashing, or any bashing of it.
    Unless you have the money to throw into a DUAL 2.5, to me saving up for any other model PM just is not worth it.... I can't fathom the idea of even buying the dual 1.8. Most of the time when MOST people run their systems, they are not harnessing all of the power it is capable of to begin with, even with HIGH END apps. Those of you who know how to optimize everything for your needs, squeezing out every last bit of energy know what I mean, and I'm sure that most of you also recognize by now that sometimes for what your doing, the Best most powerful system isn't the best for the job. I think it was Macworld where a dual g4 beat out a single 1.8 g5 in some of their tests... but I am not sure... Also look at intel. they according to them, and a great and many PC enthusiast windows ubergeeks, are the "best most powerful, fastest"? and the g5's can crush them.

    So back to it... If they introduced that iMac G5 as a "mini Powermac", I think 99.999999% of the people here, and all the critics of the iMac line would be crying out how they want one.
    What is Better? a Dual g5.
    What is more reasonable? a 20" iMac g5.

    That's my 2 cents on this.
    What do I currently run?
    I have a Dual 2.0 G5, a G3 iMac, and will be getting a G5 iMac for my home office.
     
  22. budaapple macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2004
    Location:
    Ill.
    #22
    ordered G-5 Imac

    All I was saying in my post was he is going to run alot of apps that would benefit from a dual processor as well the addional hard drive space available and the mega ram config etc etc so for his needs now and in the future I feel the dually might be better money spent. I ordered the 20: G-5 Imac I have:
    40 gig Ipod
    lime fw Imac
    dual 1.25 G-4 PM
    and a 12" PB wsd
    and oh Yea love my newton
    Thanks
     
  23. Bhennies macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2004
    Location:
    NYC & Baltimore
    #23
    ha...I said that to myself as well. It's really funny how fast that money you are saving for a g5 dissapears to rent, food and clothing. When I was in art school, I planned on getting a Powerbook for the time being and then getting a g5 when I got my cinema display. Let's just say that the pressures of the real world have definitely made me realize that that g5 may be quite a bit longer off than I originally thought. In other words...don't get the imac - I think they're pretty ugly anyway...and honestly not all that powerful, not to mention pretty locked feature wise (not very upgradeable). The g5 is a much better bet...and 6 months from now, you may be able to get a 2.5 at the price of the 2.0 or 1.8 right now (assuming that new one's are introduced this winter). My 2 cents.

    p.s. I know people hate to not have their own computer, but if you are at art school, I'm sure you can make it through 6 months using the gear in the labs...it honestly won't kill you.
     
  24. lukasbarton thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2004
    #24
    well now that this new information about the imac being built to be user accessible i need to wait and see how that pans out. if this means that in 6 months i can get a new logic board with gpu and cpu for a marginal cost the imac would be totally worth it for me. thanks for the comments keep them coming ive been making decent money recently so i may have be making this decision sooner than i thought.
     
  25. zim macrumors 65816

    zim

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2002
    #25
    Thing is that more and more colleges are requiring students to have either a laptop or a desktop in their dorm. Labs, in some areas of study, may someday be a thing of the past. Just about every college around me requires some form of computer, some students do not have the option to go without.

    Next time around, make sure that you budget your computer into your finical aid, you are allowed to, not many students take advantage of that... you should also budget in your books, supplies ect... They will give you some money to put towards the purchase.
     

Share This Page