20" iMac or 24" Refurb?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by s.hoz, Feb 3, 2008.

  1. s.hoz macrumors regular

    s.hoz

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    #1
    So I plan on buying my first mac and I'm trying to decide between a 20'' iMac (new) or a 24" iMac refurb. I have a budget of around 1,500. I don't know if I want a bigger screen or just more stuff inside.
     
  2. rfrankl macrumors 6502

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    Apr 15, 2006
    #2
    If you have the room, nothing beats a nice big screen.
     
  3. surferfromuk macrumors 65816

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    #3
    Have you seen the new 24" iMac in the flesh - it's mindblowingly good.

    Make sure you've physically seen one before you lay down the cash if your in a dilemma and you can accommodate the space for the 24"

    Pictures just don't demonstrate how awesome it actually is.
     
  4. tersono macrumors 68000

    tersono

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  5. s.hoz thread starter macrumors regular

    s.hoz

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    #5
    Yeah I've seen the 20 and 24 inch. I defiantly have room for either. I was thinking if I did get the 24 (320gb hd) I would get 4 gb ram from macsales but i would be saving money if i got the 20". Hm...the 24 inch does look amazing.
     
  6. Techguy172 macrumors 68000

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    Ontario Canada
    #6
    You know I would honestly get the 24" just because it has an excellent screen PVA vs. TN and it's much larger. It's quite powerful as well but if you have to have the best then get the 20"
     
  7. neiltc13 macrumors 68040

    neiltc13

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    #7
    It's really quite worrying me the trend towards bigger = better in computing. Here we are sitting on an internet message board surrounded by people doing exactly the same thing on their grossly overpowered computers with screens which they look at a tiny fraction of.

    I think the 24 inch is far too large for a computer, partly because I rarely do anything which requires so much room. Anyone who tells you they "couldn't live without" their huge screens is a stinking liar. I loved my 17" iMac and if they still had one today then I probably would have it.

    It is worth noting however that the 24" computer is significantly thicker than the 20".

    Oh well, back I go to 95% idle CPU.
     
  8. s.hoz thread starter macrumors regular

    s.hoz

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    #8
    First off:
    1. PVA vs. TN? Definition please.
    2. I think the 24'' would be the route to go. I'd rather just stay at 320 and get an external if needed.
    Also, just because I'm new, what's the whole deal with the Penryn processors? I'm guessing they're better than intels?
     
  9. neiltc13 macrumors 68040

    neiltc13

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    #9
    PVA and TN are terms used to describe how LCDs are made. Generally, PVA (in the 24" I believe) is superior to TN but unless you're doing absolute professional colour correction for movies or graphics or anything which requires a high level of accuracy in terms of colour you will not notice a difference between the two. It's such a minor thing that even Apple doesn't try to market the computers on it.

    Penryn is a codename for Intel's next generation CPU which will probably be released using the same "Core 2 Duo" name. Before you buy a computer with an Intel processor you have to understand that the hype that goes on about the new products is absolutely insane and it's all to do with tiny things which really, really won't make much difference to an end user. Things like a slight bump in cache size or a smaller die seem to make people go wild here (and on other forums) but in all honesty the advantage to you might be a 10% bump in performance or something like that. Certainly there isn't that much of a difference in the performance of the computers which are out now compared to those running Core Duo (the one before Core 2 Duo which very few people seem to actually know existed) if you're just performing normal computing tasks.
     
  10. errol macrumors 6502

    errol

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    Jan 11, 2008
    #10
    Go for the refurb. The Geforce 7300 is a lot better than the ATI HD2400 for gaming.
     
  11. neiltc13 macrumors 68040

    neiltc13

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    #11
    The OP didn't state what generation of refurb it is. If it is the old white plastic one then I'd say go for that based on looks alone. The new aluminium iMac is one of the most hideous looking products Apple has ever released.
     
  12. s.hoz thread starter macrumors regular

    s.hoz

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    #12
    Hmm. You do make a good point. FYI - Both iMacs are the new alum.
    I'm still not sure. I don't NEED a 24'', it would just be incredibly nice.
    I'm still in high school, so it doesn't need to be an insanely sweet computer, just one for photos, music, internet, occasional moving making and garageband. Haha, now i'm second guessing myself. Maybe the 20'' would be the way to go...
     
  13. s.hoz thread starter macrumors regular

    s.hoz

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    #13
    Another Question:

    Would there be a HUGE difference between 2.0 and 2.4 for the Ghz?
     
  14. neiltc13 macrumors 68040

    neiltc13

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    #14
    This is entirely dependent on the tasks you'll be using it for, so why not tell us about them? :p

    If you're just using it for internet/photo editing and things like this then the 2.4GHz is definitely not worth the extra money. Maybe you could go to the cheapest model and spend the saving on a wireless keyboard or something cool.
     
  15. s.hoz thread starter macrumors regular

    s.hoz

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    #15
    I'll be using the computer for Photo editing, Internet, itunes, occasional movie making with friends. I don't play games so that's not a problem. I would, however, be multi-tasking pretty much 98.402% of the time.
    I'm in high school, so i'm not using it for graphic design or whatnot.
     
  16. fall3n macrumors 6502

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    Aug 17, 2006
    #16
    Get whatever suits your needs. If you require a larger workspace then definitely get the 24". Either way get Apple Care, especially if you get a refurb.
     
  17. neiltc13 macrumors 68040

    neiltc13

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    #17
    The 2GHz iMac is more than sufficient for doing this. What matters more is the amount of RAM if you're going to be multi-tasking. You can get an extra 1GB of RAM (which should be enough for you) for $25.99 from Crucial.com and installing it yourself is very, very easy. Don't let Apple overcharge you for RAM.

    You could then get the wireless keyboard and a decent Logitech mouse to go along with it. You might also want to check out the eyeTV range of TV tuners which work with Mac because these are fantastic.

    All in all though, this seems to be the best choice for you. Far too often on here I see people going way overboard buying more than they need just because they can. A 2GHz iMac with 2GB RAM and a 250GB hard drive should serve you very well.
     
  18. s.hoz thread starter macrumors regular

    s.hoz

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    #18
    Sweet, thanks. And yes, that was exactly what I plan on doing for getting RAM. I've noticed you can get great memory if you just buy it an install it from macsales.com or crucial.com. Apple does overprice their memory. I've watched many videos and done my research so i know exactly what to do to install it. A few more q's though: Applecare. Should I get it? Is is worth the $$ if i'm getting a new computer and not a refurb.
     
  19. neiltc13 macrumors 68040

    neiltc13

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    #19
    AppleCare is worth the money if you plan on keeping the computer over a year. Certainly it's worth it in the USA where there are fewer laws about reliable goods etc.

    Might only be a good idea if you live close to an Apple Store though.
     
  20. s.hoz thread starter macrumors regular

    s.hoz

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    #20
    Well I don't live anywhere near an Apple Store, so maybe not. But I don't know, I'll have to think about it. Ok, I think the 20" is the way to go. Thanks.
     
  21. neiltc13 macrumors 68040

    neiltc13

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    #21
    You can buy AppleCare at any time during the computer's first year of life so you have plenty of time to think about it. Just don't let it go past one year otherwise you aren't allowed to buy AppleCare.
     
  22. Dainas macrumors newbie

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    Jan 28, 2008
    #22
    Just to let you know, the 24inch was not just recommended as being bigger is better. The current 20inch iMac uses cheap TN panels, the 24inch uses the far superior S-PVA types. This roughly means TN will give you allot more of that angle blackening older LCDs are known for.
     
  23. neiltc13 macrumors 68040

    neiltc13

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    #23
    The difference in quality is practically (if not completely) invisible to the naked eye. It's certainly not something which you'll notice without knowing what you're looking for and it is definitely not worth spending $600 on.
     
  24. Dainas macrumors newbie

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    Jan 28, 2008
    #24
    Well, not worth $600, but something who would see them side by side would see plain as day. Don't assume you cannot see it because the 20-inch is the only screen you've actually looked at for time.
     
  25. Techguy172 macrumors 68000

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    #25
    Maybe you ought to get your eyes checked because the difference is certainly noticeable. But Seriously only get the 24" if your doing critical photo or graphics work.
     

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