24" refurb (or 21.5".. 27" new?)

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by davehwm, Nov 24, 2009.

  1. davehwm macrumors newbie

    Nov 24, 2009
    Hi all,

    I've scoured the forums regarding this specific question and found a lot of good information. First, here is my current system:

    13" white Macbook purchased in 2007 - 2ghz, 2gb ram, 80gb HD

    Second, why I want a new desktop system:

    I want the screen real estate. I'm in going to be in and out of graduate programs for a while. I'd like to be able to have at least a couple of docs showing at the same time, either word side by side, pdf + word, safari + safari, etc. - you get the idea.

    My Macbook is getting the job done, but I have a desk and I want something more ergonomic. I will primarily be using the new system for academic purposes, some amateur photo editing, web browsing, etc. I don't need a ton of hard drive space - but currently have a growing 100 GB music library.

    Plus, I just want a nice fancy desktop because I have only bought myself a single computer in my life, rarely treat myself to anything and the idea makes me giddy.

    Another consideration.. I'd prefer the numeric keyboard (not an option w/ a refurb), and don't particularly care for the new mighty mouse. Here are my options:

    1. $999
    Refurbished iMac 24-inch 2.8GHz Intel Core 2 Duo
    24-inch glossy widescreen display
    2GB memory
    320GB hard drive
    8x SuperDrive (DVD±R DL/DVD±RW/CD-RW)
    ATI Radeon HD 2600 PRO with 256MB memory
    Built-in iSight Camera

    2. $1099
    Refurbished iMac 24-inch 2.66GHz Intel Core 2 Duo
    24-inch glossy widescreen display
    4GB memory
    640GB hard drive
    8x SuperDrive (DVD±R DL/DVD±RW/CD-RW)
    NVIDIA GeForce 9400M with 256MB memory
    Built-in iSight camera

    3. $1149
    Refurbished iMac 24-inch 3.06GHz Intel Core 2 Duo
    24-inch glossy widescreen display
    2GB memory
    500GB hard drive
    8x SuperDrive (DVD±R DL/DVD±RW/CD-RW)
    NVIDIA GeForce 8800 GS with 512MB memory
    Built-in iSight Camera

    And of course,

    4. 21.5 base

    Please help - you can feel free to convince me into the 21.5" or (potentially) waste your time trying to convince me on a 27" - but remember money is definitely an issue.

    Thank you all way in advance, I realize this question is answered in one form or another quite often - and this is my first post. Take care all!
  2. DEE9299 macrumors 6502a


    Oct 3, 2009
    Boston Mass.
    If you want screen real estate I would say the 27"...I have only played with it in the store and its simply BIG!!!
  3. davehwm thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 24, 2009
    Upon further review, option #1 and #3 only support up to 4gb of RAM which seems awfully limiting.

    I really don't think I can afford or justify the 27" by the way.
  4. MacKiddyWiddy macrumors 6502

    Aug 18, 2009
  5. opera57 macrumors 6502

    Feb 15, 2009
    I have the 3rd machine (3.06ghz iMac with 4gb ram) and find it great for all I need as a student (very similar to your requirements), although if you really want something that can accept more than 4gb of ram you probably would be better off with the new 21.5" machine, which personally I would be very happy with after having a play with one. Also the aspect ratio of the 21.5" screen is 16:9 (wider) and so you would fit 2 documents/a document and a web page side by side more easily I would think! To be honest I think you could get any one of those machines and be equally happy! [​IMG]
  6. Badger^2 macrumors 68000


    Oct 29, 2009
    any of them are overkill for your needs

    3. has the best video, but its availabliity comes and goes

    if you want a numeric keyboard and different mouse, just buy one -- microsoft, logitech, kensington, maclly all have other options -- sell your new ones on CL for a profit.

    for your needs, a 4 gig ram limit is not a limit, its more than enough

    i run the entire Adobe Creative Suite all day + tons of other apps with 4 gigs of ram, never a problem

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