New 20" iMac running kind of slow (?)

Discussion in 'iMac' started by drjay128, Oct 23, 2006.

  1. drjay128 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2006
    #1
    Hi,

    Just got our 20" iMac at the end of last week (2GB RAM, 2.16GHz, 256MB VRAM). This is our first Mac for the family. Still running an 5-year old Dell.

    It's beautiful (no pixel problems, super quiet) and was a piece of cake to set up.

    I have a Netgear router on a cable modem and have both desktops are Ethernet cabled directly into it. Haven't tested the wireless connection yet.

    The weird thing is that it just doesn't seem to be nearly as fast as I would have expected. Had a busy weekend, so have only gotten to do some very basic things on it (loaded up music in iTunes, web surfing). Still have the Dell running side by side with all fo our Windows stuff (will set up boot camp one of these days and buy a copy of Windows for it).

    Given that the iMac has 2 GB of RAM and the Dell has 512 MB, plus processor differences, etc., I expected the iMac to be noticeably faster opening websites, but it actually appears to be a bit slower (!!). It does seem like the iMac web performance improves if I shut the Dell down completely.

    Are there diagnostics I can run to determine whether performance is where it should be? Any kind of fine tuning I can do?

    Thanks
     
  2. Shadow macrumors 68000

    Shadow

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2006
    Location:
    Keele, United Kingdom
    #2
    Its probably a case of the Dell getting more of your download bandwidth. What speed internet do you have?
     
  3. drjay128 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2006
    #3
    It's a cable modem, and when I connect wirelessly with my laptop I think it typically quotes a conenction speed of 54 mbps. Does the router give priority to one machine over the over?
     
  4. balamw Moderator

    balamw

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    New England
    #4
    Opening websites should not be your first line of checking performance, since it's a task that is not CPU or RAM bound, it depends more on the browser and network...

    Safari does tend to feel a bit slower than IE, so the first thing you might try is running Firefox on both machines to see if that feels more like it.

    The next thing you might want to try is something that is CPU bound, like encoding/decoding video or rendering 3D scenes. I know my iMac encodes to H.264 about twice as fast as my 3 year old Dell, so it should be similar vs. your 5. y. o. Dell. (I've checked it running Nero on XP on both machines to get the OS out of the picture, as I thought the Handbrake results were too fast.)

    B
     
  5. ChrisME macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2006
    #5
    Have you upgraded to 10.4.8? Loading web pages and downloading files was painfully slow on my new iMac until I upgraded. Apparently this was a known problem with 10.4.7 on Intel machines.
     
  6. balamw Moderator

    balamw

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    New England
    #6
  7. drjay128 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2006
    #7
    Thanks for the tips. I will try the DNS thing tonight.

    Regarding 10.4.8, I know this will fully reveal my ignorance, but I assume we're talking about the most current version of OSX, yes (total Mac newbie)?

    I'm guessing there must be an easy link on the Apple website for OSX updates. Will check it out.

    Thanks again (in advance)

    By the way, am currently on Optimum Online (along with our cable TV) but have received marketing pitch to convert to Verizon FIOS. Any reason to think it would be worth the extra money?
     
  8. balamw Moderator

    balamw

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    New England
    #8
    From your desktop Apple menu -> Software Update http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?artnum=106704

    I'm on the fence about FiOS too (Currently Verizon DSL). Plenty of threads here about people's experiences with it good and bad.

    B
     

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