27 (2012) iMac or 21.5 (2013) iMac

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by ax19, Sep 10, 2014.

  1. ax19, Sep 10, 2014
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2014

    ax19 macrumors newbie

    Aug 4, 2014
    Here is my dilemma. I don't know weather whether to get the 2013 21.5 iMac I was originally going for or the 27 2012 iMac. Here are the spec of both:

    Model iMac - Late 2013
    Screen size 21.5”
    Processor Quad-Core i5 2.9Ghz
    Memory 8GB
    Storage Fusion Drive 1TB
    Graphics Nvidia GeForce GT 750M (1gb)
    Price: $1435

    Model iMac - Late 2012
    Screen size 27.0”
    Processor Quad-Core i5 2.9Ghz
    Memory 8GB
    Storage Fusion Drive 1TB
    Graphics Nvidia GeForce GTX 660M (512mb)
    Price: $1599
    Which one would be best, taking into account performance, age, and screen?
    Thank you!
  2. willydimes macrumors regular

    Jun 8, 2014
    What are prices of them and what are your usage patterns like?

    Realistically the biggest difference you would notice would be the screen size but the 21.5 is a slightly faster machine with better graphics.
  3. rumplestiltskin macrumors 6502

    Apr 12, 2006
    Do not buy a 21.5" model. The RAM is not upgradeable whereas, the 27" models have a door to access the RAM slots.

    Consider the 21.5" model a "no user-serviceable parts inside" appliance.

    Regardless of the model you buy, also buy AppleCare (lacocostore.com has a great price).
  4. ax19, Sep 11, 2014
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2014

    ax19 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 4, 2014
    Okay. I am leaning toward the 27 2012.
    Would the 2013 21.5 be noticeable faster for everyday use, light video editing, coding and causal gaming?
  5. diipii macrumors 6502a

    Dec 6, 2012
    Either way they will fry their graphic cards within a couple of years because there's no space in the case for air to circulate.
  6. ax19, Sep 15, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 17, 2014

    ax19 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 4, 2014
    So there are still a couple things that concern me before I pull the trigger.

    1. The graphics card on the 27 is better right? It has less ram but if I add 16gb of RAM to the 27, would that be aces sable by the graphic processor to? Or will it only use the 512mb or RAM. If so, is that enough?

    2. The Fusion drive and the Wifi (not going to hardwire it) is faster in the 2013 model. Is the difference marginal like with the processor, or will I notice it on a day to day basis.

    3. Is the 27 too big? I seen it at the store and IMHO i think the 21.5 looks small and the 27 looks too big. Do most people get used to it?

    Please comment with your opinions and help me out. I don't want to regret making a decision down the road.

    Thank you!!:apple:
  7. ax19 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 4, 2014
    BTW: refurb.me is is a really good place to track refurbished products and too see the entire inventory at the refurbished store :)
  8. Macsonic macrumors 65816


    Sep 6, 2009
    A Mac technician once told me the 27" iMac is the better choice. Because the hardware components in the 21.5" are too close, too compressed due to the smaller casing size unlike the 27" size.
  9. fathergll macrumors 65816

    Sep 3, 2014

    I find the 27" to be big at times. I have a 22" display that I use a lot as well with my macmini and it really is nice size. An ideal world I'd probably have dual 22" or maybe 24" monitors.

    There are times where the 27" comes really in handy and at the end of the day it comes down to adjusting to how you use the 27" compared to something smaller like a 21.5". I wouldn't let the 27" scare you off but it is a different experience.

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8 September 10, 2014