processor questions:D

Discussion in 'iMac' started by streetfoldsfive, Nov 27, 2012.

  1. macrumors 6502

    Jul 28, 2012
    So I will be pure ordering my 27inch. Super excited I'm going for the 1999 model with 1tb fusion and 2 gigs graphics. I plan on doing some light photo shop, mine craft, steam games, internet, school work! Will the i5 do the job for a couple years or would it be smarter to throw down for the i7:D thanks for the help :€
  2. thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jul 28, 2012
    Would it be better to drop fusion and get i7?
  3. macrumors 6502

    Apr 19, 2012
    Depends. If you are willing to go external ssd and hold off on fusion you will be able to get a i7 which is awesome. I have a 3.4 i7 in my iMac and love it. For day to day work you won't notice it but when you render a large hd file it pays off big time. You will get a 8 virtual core processor as compared to a 4 core with the i5. Once you order your iMac you are stuck with the processor the hard drive can be replaced later if need be. Like I said can go ssd external for $199 with a LaCie rugged 120 gb ssd with thunderport and will be just as fast as internal. Just my 2 cents
  4. thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jul 28, 2012
    So say I dropped fusion for the i7, would I notice more performances increases? Also if I purchased an external ssd later would it work just as well as a fusion?
  5. macrumors 68000


    Jul 22, 2002
    Not with some tinkering and it's probably not advisable because if the SSD became disconnected or something then your whole iMac would just stop and it might corrupt the OS.

    i7 is a great idea, get Fusion if your budget allows it as you'll probably notice the different with that of i7 for most day to day tasks like opening frequently used files and programs. It's still unclear if you can add Fusion Drive later like you can replace the HDD with an SSD.
  6. thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jul 28, 2012
    So you would recommend both?
  7. macrumors regular

    Jun 18, 2012
    I was also deciding between cpu and fusion, but when I googled for differences between the i5 and i7 in gaming, it looked like the better CPU hardly makes a difference. I'll definitely go for the 680MX, but I'm not 100% sold on the fusion drive yet.
  8. thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jul 28, 2012
    I've heard the difference is hardly noticeable between i7 and I5 unless you do heavy video editing I do not know how true this is. The graphics is definaye but the fusion is iffy though I've heard it runs as smooth as a regular ssd
  9. macrumors regular

    Jun 18, 2012
    you can find game benchmarks for the i5 and i7 here

    I heard the same thing about video editing, but since I won't be doing that very regularly I will definitely be fine with the i5.

    With the fusion I can't really gauge my real world benefits yet, I guess for gaming it's not going to do much. You can't use the SSD part of the Fusion Drive with Bootcamp/Windows. Maybe it would make a difference with games in OSX.

    Does anybody know if a bootcamp partition would be possible on an external SSD?
  10. thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jul 28, 2012
    This is such a difficult decision haha!
    If you don't mind me asking why are you debating the fusion?
  11. macrumors demi-god


    Jun 10, 2006
    I would get the i7 for longevity if nothing else. It won't make a huge difference, but it will make some difference, which will become more and more noticable as time goes on. I opted for the 2.33GHz iMac back 2006 over the 2.16GHz and it has given it more life in 2012. That's how it works! I would get a Fusion Drive and i7 with 2GB GPU if I were you. In prior generations, the i7 had hyperthreading and the i5 did not (8 threads vs 4 threads) which can make a huge difference for certain applications, including Creative Suite apps. I'm not sure if the current new gen i5's have hyper threading but if not then that's a major reason to put down the extra $200 for the i7.
  12. macrumors regular

    Jun 18, 2012
    I don't know how much it would really do for me in the end. It sounds like a cool concept, but I'm not sure if it's worth the benefit for me personally. I get what it does basically, and see areas where I can profit from the drive, but when I was testing a previous generation low-end 27" iMac, I had no speed complaints really.

    I think I will end up getting a Fusion Drive, just not 100% sure yet ; )


    It's still the same, only the i7 has HT, but from what I found during my brief search, you really need to have the specific programs and applications to make use of that.

    I can only speak for myself, but the i7 seems to be an upgrade I would never need and I don't think I will use the computer for any major tasks in 6 years.
  13. macrumors 603


    Aug 5, 2010
    It's just a matter of hyperthreading. It doesn't mean you have to saturate 8 logical cores. Hyperthreading does enable some amount of load balancing, but for the uses described, I don't think it would affect your longevity at all.

    With creative suite apps it kind of varies. They all scale with core counts. Some hit diminishing returns earlier than others. After Effects needs an incredible amount of ram to scale well. 16GB is the low end to effectively render on 8 logical cores. Again it varies. I highly doubt hyperthreading will make a large difference on longevity if you don't need it today. Scaling improvements have been more in favor of OpenCL/CUDA computation than addressing increasing core counts. I personally view all hard drives as expendable parts. The drive is probably the most likely thing to require early replacement. I wish Apple made it easier in the imacs.

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