2011 Base Model 21.5" Information

Discussion in 'iMac' started by smelly cat, May 14, 2011.

  1. smelly cat macrumors regular

    smelly cat

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2010
    #1
    Hey all so I just picked up the new 2011 21.5" imac base model. I've been perusing the forums and found that most of the threads here are regarding the 27" model as a point of interest. So I've got this imac setup and ready to go with both OS X and windows 7 with a ton of games and apps installed and thought I'd like to contribute to the community here.

    What i'm proposing is that if anyone would like to know more hands on information about the 21.5 incher i'll be more than happy to serve it up. Instead of wasting time uploading a whole bunch of content to the forums in an effort to guess what you want to know I think it'll be most efficient if it's done based on request; anything from live videos of the latest games running in OS X or Windows to temperatures and noise levels while doing video encoding.

    So yeah if there's any specifics of the imac you'd like to know about then fire away! :apple:
     
  2. meli macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2004
    #2
    I'm thinking about getting the base model. I was considering upgrading to the i7, but after seeing Macworld's lab reports, I'm leaning toward the base model.

    I'd be interested in general impressions of heat & noise during light usage (web surfing, etc).

    here's a link to the Macworld article I referred to:
    http://www.macworld.com/article/159862/2011/05/bto2011imacs.html
     
  3. Max Bemis macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 8, 2011
    #3
    my current highest temperature via istat is 135 degrees and it's been pretty much silent since i set it up 3 days ago.
     
  4. RollTide macrumors 6502

    RollTide

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2006
    Location:
    Alabama
    #4
    Ya I bought the base model, and I agree that there is little info on anything other than the 27. I am really really happy with it. I've been gaming with it for the past couple days, encoding, photoshopping and it has been a dream. I may throw in some more ram down the road, but couldn't be happier with it.

    For many (and me) the 27 is overkill. One of my buds picked one up, and he uses it more for his xbox than anything.
     
  5. BlueSchizz macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 7, 2011
    #5
    why does it look like everyone is getting the 27 inch model?
     
  6. 2ndname macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2011
    #6
    Yes!! Been wanting a thread like this. Would you do me a huge huge huge favor?

    Can you please download and install the software below, OSX version please.

    http://www.niksoftware.com/downloads/usa/entry.php?view=software

    Afterwards can you edit a picture or two using the default options and let me know how bad the lag is when you switch between different filters? On the left side there should be presets that you can switch around, ex; 00 default, 03 realistic (strong)...when you move from one preset to another, how fast does it apply the filter onto the picture? Sluggish or pretty smooth? Finally, when you change the adjustments around (right hand side) does it perform the adjustment pretty smoothly or sluggish?

    THANK YOU!
     
  7. smelly cat thread starter macrumors regular

    smelly cat

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2010
    #7
    Noise has got to be the most amazing part of this machine. I don't know if it's typical of all the current imacs or maybe mine's just some freak of manufacturing - but it's dead silent. I mean SILENT. Even at full load (gaming with dead space 2, left 4 dead 2, mass effect 2) I can't hear anything from the machine even when the sound is on mute. Considering the form factor and the considerable power under the hood I found that amazing.

    I remember my first iMac. The original blue iMac G3 released back in 1998... that thing sounded like a friggin' jet taking off in my room! :eek:

    All of this golden silence though seems to come at the cost of running quite warm. During gaming sessions when I was leaning forward to see if I could hear any fans (I couldn't) the one thing I did notice was some serious warmth radiating from the system. wowza. overall it's noteworthy but i'm not too concerned about it. temps at idle are about 40C for the cpu, 41C for HDD, 55C for GPU. Under lights loads - web surfing with some music or youtube - the temps don't seem to rise from idle much if at all; at most another couple extra degrees hotter.
     
  8. smelly cat, May 14, 2011
    Last edited: May 14, 2011

    smelly cat thread starter macrumors regular

    smelly cat

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2010
    #8
    i'll get on it asap :cool:

    EDIT: dude there are SOOOOO many different versions of the software you just linked me to... any particular one you'd like me to use???
     
  9. RollTide macrumors 6502

    RollTide

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2006
    Location:
    Alabama
    #9
     
  10. Zazah macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 8, 2011
    #10
    hi!

    is it the 6750M you're playing with? in which resolution?

    i'm going for the base model, just want to know how it's good with games :)

    Thanks
     
  11. smelly cat thread starter macrumors regular

    smelly cat

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2010
    #11
    Yeah it's the 6750M and I've gotta tell you that this chip is surprisingly robust. I've so far run the following games: Amnesia, CS:S, Left 4 Dead 2, Bioshock 2, mass effect 2, and dead space 2. Still in the process of installing more but all of these already installed titles run buttery smooth at 1920 x 1080 with maxed settings with the exception of AA (a setting I never bother to enable anyway unless a game does it in a default preset like dead space 2)

    Granted, the games I've been playing so far aren't the most demanding (still haven't installed crysis 2) I could throw at it but nonetheless I didn't expect a chip with only 480 stream processors to be so capable
     
  12. EEXOOO macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2009
    #12
    How much FPS are you getting playing those games?

    May I know what model of Hard Drive is in your iMac?
     
  13. SoCal70 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2010
    #13
    So the base 21.5'' model will handle Windows Parallel/VMware fusion with ease? Will video editing be smooth with an external monitor?
     
  14. 2ndname macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2011
    #14
    O yah, sorry, thought it linked directly to it. It should be called "HDR Efex Pro™"
     
  15. smelly cat thread starter macrumors regular

    smelly cat

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2010
    #15
    definitely a constant 30+ fps on all those games listed with the exception of dead space 2. There have been 1 or 2 intense moments in dead space 2 where the frame rate drops noticeably.

    Not to say that the gameplay in dead space 2 ever gets "choppy". However there are points where I can tell the frame rate has dropped significantly as the game's mouse acceleration properties begin to change (not sure if other gamers notice this). I might try disabling V-sync next time I play.

    I've got the absolute stock base model btw. 500GB drive. 300GB for OS X and 200GB for Windows.

    Although it should be noted that I'm using Virtual Box myself - virtual machine performance flies for the most part. The only point of concern I have is that if you are going to do a lot of VM work you may want to consider a RAM upgrade from stock. Sandy Bridge itself though seems to have more than enough muscle for the task.
     
  16. EEXOOO macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2009
    #16
    Thanks for the info. Was wondering what is the model of the drive, Western Digital or Seagate.
     
  17. east1999 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2011
    #17
    Have you felt any hiccups so far?

    I'd like to know more about the speakers. Is there a subwoofer?
     
  18. RollTide macrumors 6502

    RollTide

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2006
    Location:
    Alabama
    #18
  19. smelly cat thread starter macrumors regular

    smelly cat

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2010
    #19
    on jpeg images of modest resolution there isn't really any noticeable delay at all. I took some RAW files from my pop's camera and applied the same adjustments though and indeed there is some delay though only momentary. Overall I would say the photo editing speed is definitely snappy.

    ST3500418AS 7200RPM Seagate drive

    No functional hiccups so far. I've looked really hard with the test images on this forum and my display doesn't seem to have any apparent yellowing either. woot! i guess i can count myself lucky. I definitely wish there was more than one video out on the 21.5" though. :(

    Bootcamp bugs are often a sticking point with macs. I remember the 2010 imac had a bug that often prevented windows from even installing and booting properly. My 2010 macbook pro's headphone jack doesn't output any audio in windows. this imac on the other hand doesn't seem to have any problems in windows at all.

    Unfortunately the imac does not have a subwoofer. 20 watt stereo amps is all. i find this fact curious since the macbook pro has a subwoofer. :confused: The audio is just about what you'd expect from an AIO. Mids and highs are nice and clear but they lack bass.
     
  20. jpjandrade macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    #20
    Out of curiosity, do you have Shogun 2: Total War, Civilization V, StarCraft II or Dragon Age II on Boot Camp? How do those run?

    Thanks for posting all those info!
     
  21. 2ndname macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2011
    #21
    Sweet! Thank you
     
  22. Zazah macrumors newbie

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    May 8, 2011
    #22
    Thanks mate :)
     
  23. EEXOOO macrumors regular

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    Aug 1, 2009
  24. faisal13, May 15, 2011
    Last edited: May 15, 2011

    faisal13 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 15, 2011
    #24
    hey, thanks for the post! i was wondering why there was nothing about the 21.5 inch imac- i use the 27 inch imac- 2009 at the office daily for graphics design but i really need one for when im at home and the 27 inch screen is too much for me, literally turning my head from one side to the other is kind of annoying haha.

    i'm a graphics designer and i like to play games from time to time

    i have no doubt about photoshop, illustrator and inDesign running like a dream on any of the imacs but i still have a little doubt in it's gaming capability so is there a chance you can post videos of you playing games like crysis, gta 4 and assassins creed through bootcamp? this would be greatly appreciated

    also, most gaming benchmarks around are useless since they play everything at 16XAA and vsync on i don't see the point :S

    one more thing..

    im also wondering if it's worth the money to buy the higher end 21.5 inch with the corei7 cpu in it, or is the base model the best buy for it's price? :S
     
  25. smelly cat thread starter macrumors regular

    smelly cat

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2010
    #25
    lol oh man those all happen to be games i don't have! but that's what demos are for right?? i'll try to get my hands on demo versions of those games and report back. From what I understand though, Dragon Age II has a very similar performance profile to Mass Effect 2. As I mentioned before the new imac can max that game out.

    sure! just gimme a bit of time and i'll be back with some vids.

    the high end 21.5" definitely gets you get a healthy performance boost with a faster cpu and gpu. The real treat with that model though is the extra SSD and HDD options you can choose from. If you don't mind spending the extra moolah I say go for it, man.
     

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