On the fence...

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by verb, Feb 10, 2004.

  1. verb macrumors member

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    Jan 30, 2004
    #1
    I'm in the market for the 20" iMac mostly because I need something with more screen real-estate and speed than my 600Mhz iBook. I also want a SuperDrive. The 20" iMac seems like a decent value due to the fact that's it's only $600 more than the 20" cinema display.

    I don

    I still have a nagging thought that I'd be spending my money poorly and the "guts" of an iMac are so similar to a Powerbook, but unportable that I'd regret buying a iMac. I don't need a portable machine, but I've been known to enjoy using my iBook on the couch while watching TV or something. Of course there's the nagging idea that for the same price as a powerbook I could get a G5 tower.

    Anyone else who was on the fence previously want to talk about their decision and why they are (or are not) happy with their decision?
     
  2. johnnyjibbs macrumors 68030

    johnnyjibbs

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    #2
    A little bit of a predictament..

    You could go for the PowerBook but it would be about the same/more money and you would still have a smaller screen, or you could go for the G5 tower, but then you wouldn't have a screen. Then you'd end up spending extra money on a 20" screen for it (although you would have that for your next computer)...

    I'd go with the 20" iMac. It has the power of the PowerBook but with a massive screen and for, you said yourself, only $600 more than the display itself would cost. In any case, LCD displays probably only have a life of 5 years max so you probably don't need to worry about it being stuck to your iMac.

    You could keep your iBook for your portability fix...

    The only problem is that none of us know when the G5 iMac will come out - could theoretically be any time, but may be a year or two yet. The iMac has only been G4 for 2 years so...
     
  3. wordmunger macrumors 603

    wordmunger

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    #3
    Not quite "just a powerbook"

    It's got a faster SuperDrive, the option of a bigger hard drive, and a MUCH brighter display, not to mention the amount of real estate you get--all for less money. That said, I wouldn't give my powerbook up for anything. I need the portability more than I need the power.
     
  4. blackfox macrumors 65816

    blackfox

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    #4
    Oh decisions....

    hey, not to complicate the discussion, but @MCE you can upgrade to a 'superdrive' for $379..... A little slow though...or get an external burner. With regards to screen, there are many deals to be found if you look..not always the prettiest but a 20 in can be fund for <$800. I still swear by CRTs, I have a refurbished 21" apple studio CRT and it is awesome(though admittedly huge and heavy). With the money you would spend, I wuld get a G5 and any monitor you can live with. I know you won't be sorry in the long run...the 20" imac does look great though...but pperformance/value has never been great. Hope this is helpful....
     
  5. Fender2112 macrumors 6502a

    Fender2112

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    #5
    Have you concidered a used or refurbished 20" iMac. A small discount might ease the pain and make the decision easier.
     
  6. verb thread starter macrumors member

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    Jan 30, 2004
    #6
    I am currently working at part time faculty at the local community college so I think I qualify for the educational discount. I'd rather use that on a new computer than get the refurb discount.

    Another wrinkle is that I have a perfectly fine 3 year old 19" monitor that is hooked up to my PC now. I could utilize that with a powermac just fine. If I got an iMac I'd have to find something to do with that monitor. It seems to make logical sense to get the PowerMac, but I like the look of the iMac so much....
     
  7. johnnyjibbs macrumors 68030

    johnnyjibbs

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    #7
    I thought G5 towers looked horrible until I saw one in the flesh (my only time. I played on it in the store for a while and it was a dual 2 GHz :))

    Of course, you do get a gorgeous screen with the 20" iMac - much nicer than a scabby 19" CRT...
     
  8. wordmunger macrumors 603

    wordmunger

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    #8
    If you think you'd be happy with that monitor then it's a no brainer--get a tower--WAY more power for the same money. But make sure you REALLY like the image quality--after all, the monitor is what you're looking at all day, not the CPU. You might try hooking it up to your iBook, just to get a sense of what Mac Os X will look like with that monitor.

    Another caveat--CRT monitors have been known to burn out after 4 or 5 years, so you may want to start saving up for a replacement.
     
  9. johnnyjibbs macrumors 68030

    johnnyjibbs

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    #9
    Out of our previous 2 computers (both PCs), our first monitor (from 1995) started to go yellow and dark from around 2000 onwards. It's still useable but really annoying and absolutely no good if you want to see colours properly! It seemed like a power issue but not sure. The second monitor that came with out 1999 PC went wrong about a year ago - completely useless with no picture or anything. That meant we had to make do with our old yellow monitor until we got our new Dell recently.

    Another thing, it's probably not the case now, but our old 1995 monitor was designed for 800x600 resolution - 1024x768 was the max but it didn't look very good on it. The newer handles up to 1200x800 odd and the new Dell obviously higher. Another thing to think about when re-using old monitors.
     
  10. Dont Hurt Me macrumors 603

    Dont Hurt Me

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    #10
    If Imac had better technology inside i would say go for it but a 1.25G4 protower or a G5 is such a better investment. so many ways to change or add to those machines,Videocards,PCI,CPU,etc. Imac you are stuck with what you have and that is a great display attached to old stale hardware. G4 1.25,fx5200,no pci,no upgrades to speak of plus even the 1.25 G4 protower will outperform a 1.25G4 IMAC.
    Ireally like Imacs all in one and the way it looks but Apple is just killing it with poor hardware. Try for a G5 tower if you can or wait and just maybe sometime this year we will get a G5 Imac. my 2 cents.
     
  11. FatSweatyChimp macrumors member

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    Feb 12, 2004
    #11
    If the 20" iMac had the power of a dual 2 Gig G5 then I'd happily have one.

    I wouldn't touch one with a bargepole though at the moment.

    Shame :(
     
  12. iJon macrumors 604

    iJon

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    Feb 7, 2002
    #12
    no kidding man, i wish every apple computer was as powerful as the dual 2 gig, they would sell so many. i also wish all dogde cars had the viper engine, but until then i wont touch it with a bargepole :rolleyes:

    iJon
     
  13. FatSweatyChimp macrumors member

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    #13
    Oh so you think the 20" iMac is a great deal then?

    Shame no one else does. :rolleyes:
     
  14. wordmunger macrumors 603

    wordmunger

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    #14
    Speak for yourself. I think if you're in the market for a large screen desktop system, it's an excellent deal. It's only $600 more than the monitor on its own. If you'd rather have raw CPU power and a crappy monitor, get a G5 + third party display, for just a little more money. As I said before, the *monitor* is what you actually look at all day, so if what you usually do doesn't have terribly high CPU demands, the 20-inch iMac is a bargain.
     
  15. FatSweatyChimp macrumors member

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    Feb 12, 2004
    #15
    Let's look at it this way.

    I would have to pay £1749 for the 20" iMac - that is $3304.

    The iMac 20" on Apple.com is $2199 - that is £1163

    A dual 2 gig G5 on Apple.com is $2999 - that is £1587

    A dual 2 gig G5 on Apple.com/uk is £2299.01 - that is $4343.99


    So.....If I buy a 20" iMac, someone in America can get a dual 2 gig for less money.

    And that's a good deal???
     
  16. Dont Hurt Me macrumors 603

    Dont Hurt Me

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    #16
    20" Imac isnt a bargain however you look at it. 20 inch monitor by itself is $1299 USD so apple is charging $1000 USD for the base that holds it and you get a computer in that base. If it had a G5 2.0 in it i would buy it in a heart beat. where do you get your $600 figure from verb? Imac 20" is $2199
    20" monitor is $1299
    Emac 17" $1099 This is Apples best buy.
     
  17. redkore macrumors member

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    #17
    Not if you buy the iMac in America.
     
  18. wordmunger macrumors 603

    wordmunger

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    #18
    Fatsweatychimp, you're conflating the US/UK price discrepancy with the iMac/G5 price difference. Two separate issues.

    Don't Hurt Me, you're right--it's a $900 difference. Sorry about that. But you still couldn't get a 20-inch monitor and a G5 for $2199. So again, if raw power is not important to you, the 20-inch iMac's not a bad deal.

    Personally, I'm waiting for the G5 laptop. My TiBook can hold out up to another year if need be.

    Edit--Verb may be referring to the education store difference. At my education store (UNC Charlotte), the difference is only $739.
     
  19. FatSweatyChimp macrumors member

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    #19
    No not really. Those prices affect me so they're valid for my opinion.

    Would YOU pay $3304 for a 20" iMac?
     
  20. wordmunger macrumors 603

    wordmunger

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    #20
    No, but I wouldn't pay $4343 for a dual G5 either.
     
  21. redkore macrumors member

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    #21
    UK prices affect you, not the US ones.

    Compare a UK-priced iMac with a UK-priced G5.
     
  22. FatSweatyChimp macrumors member

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  23. redkore macrumors member

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  24. FatSweatyChimp macrumors member

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    Feb 12, 2004
    #24
    Relative to the UK too :D


    I'm not ragging on Apple for the sake of it. I'm hoping for G5 updates soon - but I'm not paying £2299 ($4343) for a dual 2 gig.

    Make it dual 2.5 or above and I'll be in there.
     
  25. verb thread starter macrumors member

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    Jan 30, 2004
    #25
    Wow...it seems that every discussion on Mac hardware turns into a UK price complaint session. Do I complain that German cars are cheaper in Germany...nooooo ;-)

    To clarify, the iMac in the USA is $2199. The edu discount I can get brings it to $1999.

    To compare edu prices:
    15" PB w/ Superdrive $2299.00
    1.8 GHz DP G5 $2299.00

    Therefore, the iMac is actually $200 cheaper than either option. It has better specs than the PB and a screen unlike the more expensive DP G5.

    However it doesn't have the speed of the 1.8Ghz DP.

    In that light, what do ya'll think?
     

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