HELP! Cannot make a decision!! iMac or PMac?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by mraila, Nov 6, 2005.

  1. mraila macrumors member

    Nov 4, 2005
    Here's my dilemma:
    I work for a large organization (a university) that is an Apple reseller. They sell end-of-life models for cheap $ when new models come out.

    I am a somewhat advanced user (mostly do Photoshop, Final Cut sometimes, HTML, might try World of Warcraft) but money is somewhat of an issue. Which should I buy (these are both recently discontinued models):

    (both have ATI Radeon 9600 with 128 MB VRAM)

    For $1330: 20" iMac 2ghz, 250GB HD, 512MB, Airport Extreme, Bluetooth, 20" display, dual layer Super Drive. No Firewire 800. Money left over to max-out the RAM. No further expansion possible. (although the only thing I ever added to my Power Mac G3 over 4 years was a USB card)


    For $1430: Dual 2ghz Power Mac, 160GB HD, 512MB, no Airport/Bluetooth, no display, dual layer Super Drive, slightly faster front side bus, 1 FW 800 port, and possibility for future expansion. Would then have to use my old 17" CRT monitor for now.

    Easy answer is "Advanced User = Power Mac," but this iMac is really pretty powerful. I've also been told that not many programs actual use the second processor in the Power Mac, so it would be wasted much of the time.

  2. Chrispy macrumors 68020


    Dec 27, 2004
    Avon, IN
    I would say get the powermac since it is only a $100 difference. Save up some money and get a nice 20" or larger widescreen monitor down the road. That would be a setup that would last you a long time!
  3. Blue Velvet Moderator emeritus

    Jul 4, 2004
    No contest. PM all the way... the added processor and increased expandability will give you years of good use.
  4. asherman13 macrumors 6502a


    Jul 31, 2005
    SF Bay Area, CA
    it depends it you need it now, and if you use firewire800. obviously the fact that the Pmac has a dual is nice, but if you need to use this computer ASAP, and don't want to /can't save up money or wait to use the powermac, get the imac. do you use airport and bluetooth? with the imac you're also getting a bigger HDD.

    IMO, get the iMac. $100 is a start towards maxing out the RAM, and you don't need to buy: display, keyboard, mouse, airport, bluetooth. but that's just me.
  5. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    May 19, 2002
    Not many APPLICATIONs use two processors at the same time.

    BUT ...

    The OS does make use of both processors splitting up Threads/Applications on both processors.

    Unlike OS 9, where the 2nd/3rd/4th processor would get used only in extremely rare instances -- the 2nd processor gets used almost all the time under OS X.

    Especially under the latest version of OS X v10.4, which upgraded to SMPng used by FreeBSD.

    Making for much better use of the 2nd processor.
  6. ~Shard~ macrumors P6


    Jun 4, 2003
    Only $100 difference? I would buy the PowerMac based on that single fact alone. :cool:
  7. mraila thread starter macrumors member

    Nov 4, 2005
    thanks for the input - I'm starting to lean towards to Power Mac.

    Any more opinions?
  8. Eluon macrumors regular

    Apr 14, 2005
    Spring, Texas
    powermac, simply because of the price and its ability to be expanded. I have an iMac G5 Rev B and love it to death, but I'd love to have a powermac.
  9. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    May 19, 2002
    Buy the PowerMac, or come back later asking the stupid question

    "How do I upgrade the iMac g5 graphics card?"

    The graphics card is extrememly important and only the PM can be upgraded, and also has a lot more DIMM slots, not to mention the PCI slots and extra space inside for a drive.

    Plus nice LCDs keep dropping in price all the time, and with Christmas coming up quick -- sales on them should make for some nice prices.

    Unless you really hate your VGA CRT. :confused:

    Are you using Airpot right now? If you aren't why would the lack of it matter as much.
  10. mraila thread starter macrumors member

    Nov 4, 2005
    Thanks again.

    I haven't actually used my CRT monitor for a couple of years, but it does still work. (I've been using my PowerBook, which I'll be selling if I get the Power Mac)

    Will be tough to work with a monster display like that again, but hopefully only temporarily...
  11. Macky-Mac macrumors 68030


    May 18, 2004

    then get the'll have a nice display, it is a powerful computer, and you'll avoid months (years?) of wishing you had a better display than that old crt you gave up on two years ago.

    I would say get the powermac if you're going to use this computer in your employment doing "advanced user" stuff at a job (8 hours a day, five days a week, week after week, etc)...but the imac will do all of what you want if you dont need the absolute fastest machine to save time on a job
  12. wdlove macrumors P6


    Oct 20, 2002
    If I had the chance I would certainly go for the Power Mac also. It's an awesome machine and upgradeable.
  13. pionata macrumors 6502

    Oct 12, 2005
    I was kinda in the same dilema, I wanted a Imac g5 rev.c when it got released but now I freaked out for the 23" cinema display. It realy depends on what you need to do. I think the display is what makes the computer either a joy or a pain to use. So if there is no chance you can get a ACD, get the Imac.
  14. tekmoe macrumors 68000

    Feb 12, 2005
    i don't really care for the imacs. they are consumer grade and don't have much upgradibility. i say go with the powermac.
  15. ~Shard~ macrumors P6


    Jun 4, 2003
    The iMacs definitely are a strong machine though, whether you can upgrade them or not. You get a lot of power and bang for your buck, especially now with the new iMacs, so it all depends what your needs are. But yes, I agree, go with the PowerMac in this specific instance. :)

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