27" iMac too big for only Internet and iTunes use?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Kendo, Jul 28, 2011.

  1. Kendo macrumors 68000

    Apr 4, 2011
    If you are strictly using the iMac for Internet and iTunes use, would the 27" iMac be too big? I noticed that when trying out the 27" iMac, maximizing the Safari window doesn't help much because the screen is too large. And the full screen mode in OS X Lion would certainly make the 21.5" seem even bigger.

    Would a 21.5" iMac suffice for Internet, iPhone syncing, and some light gaming? Because I noticed that the majority of the people who recommend the 27" iMac need the space for developing. Does any casual iMac users have any input?
  2. AdrianK macrumors 68020

    Feb 19, 2011
    The 21.5" will suffice for what you want to go, though if you're gaming you'll want the 1GB VRAM option.

    Just get whichever screen size you prefer.
  3. iSee macrumors 68040


    Oct 25, 2004
    I suspect the 21.5" is perfect for you.

    It more depends on your style of browsing and using iTunes.
    If you like to open a bunch of browser windows at once you can use the space of the 27".

    If you prefer to focus on one page at a time, the 21.5" has plenty of space.

    Likewise some people probably love having lots of iTunes windows open or a really wide window with a lot of columns visible. (That would drive me nuts, but it's all a matter of comfort and opinion.

    I have the 27" iMac and I have to admit, all the space is wasted most of the time. (I do some Flash development on the side -- that's the only time I really use the full screen.) I would have been better off with the 21.5".
  4. ddeadserious macrumors 6502a


    Jul 28, 2008
    Plymouth, MI
    I use a 27" iMac at work and just bought a 21.5" for home(by choice). I find the 27" to be a bit cumbersome to use for anything other than graphic design/photo work(in which case the screen size is great). My internet window(that I'm typing in right now) is only 16" horizontal, much bigger, and websites looks tiny or incorrectly formatted. I have iTunes as a full size window on my 21.5" at home and it even looks ridiculous there(I don't browse full screen even at home).

    For general use, the 27" may be cumbersome, having to look from side to side. I'd recommend a 21.5" and grab an external monitor if you end up wanting more space.
  5. HobeSoundDarryl macrumors 604


    Feb 8, 2004
    Hobe Sound, FL (20 miles north of Palm Beach)
    With such modest requirements, I would suggest look at the refurb and used markets. Even a Mac from a few years ago would be able to cover those needs. A brand new one seems overkill.

    You might even think about iPad plus maybe the zaggmate keyboard or similar, again maybe even the prior generation via closeout offers, refurb or used. iOS5 will eliminate the need to sync with a computer and your very light requirements are easily handled by iPad1. See if your desired games have been released as apps and that might be the way to go.

    And I hate to say it, but those very modest needs might also be covered by a cheap Windows device, on which you'll find a wider variety of light games.

    Personally, I have a 27" iMac and I love the expansive screen real estate. It's not about making one Safari window full width; it's about being able to fit multiple windows on the screen at the same time (for instance, 2+ Safari windows showing the entirety of 2+ favorite websites at the same time). Or having the full width of my favorite (widest) website in a Safari window and Mail open full width right next to it. BUT, if I was only interested in a computer for the needs you expressed, I'd probably go refurb/used or iPad 1 or 2 maybe with Zaggmate.
  6. Fishrrman macrumors G5


    Feb 20, 2009
    "Would a 21.5" iMac suffice for Internet, iPhone syncing, and some light gaming? Because I noticed that the majority of the people who recommend the 27" iMac need the space for developing. Does any casual iMac users have any input?"

    The real determining factor is, can you afford the extra $$ for the 27"?

    If you can, GET IT, you will NEVER regret having all that extra screen space in front of you.

    If price _is_ a consideration, you might consider a refurbished 27" from the Apple Store.

    If you buy the 21", it may be ok. But I'll bet that before too long, you start thinking, "I could have had the 27"!"....
  7. MR.Raul macrumors regular


    Jul 28, 2010
    I bought the 27" to get the better specs, if the 21,5" had the same specs, I would probably have gone for that one.
    At the store the 27" doesn't look that big, but once I got it home and got it set up, it was huge!
    But after a week or two when getting used to the size, it actually looks small.
    But I don't have any problem with space on my big desk.
    I use my iMac mostly for internet and some gaming.
    Only problem is that one sit a bit to close to the screen, something like 80cm/32inches.
  8. steve123 macrumors 6502

    Aug 26, 2007
  9. Icaras macrumors 603


    Mar 18, 2008
    California, United States
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_3_5 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8L1 Safari/6533.18.5)

    I assume you got the top end 27"? Because the top end 21.5" and the base 27" have the same exact specs, aside from the size, resolution, and additional thunderbolt port.
  10. OW22 macrumors 6502


    Sep 3, 2006
    Dublin, Ireland

    I was in the same boat. Had a 20in iMac Core Duo from 2006.

    All I do is Browsing, iTunes, Mail, have all my photos on iPhoto, watch movies etc. But I am on the mac a lot when I'm home.

    I got the 27in last week. And I love the screen, wouldn't personally have gone with the smaller one. It's great to have two full size browsing windows open, or have a full browsing window open with iTunes open beside etc.

    What I did thought was buy a mid 2010 model. I went to the authorised reseller and had the intention of getting the base 2011 27in. But they had a mid 2010 base model, brand new (i.e. boxed, never opened), reduced to clear and it was 350 Euro off.

    No brainer for me, I don't need huge processing or graphics power. And with the money saved, I can get a Time Capsule or Apple TV and other stuff etc. The store even threw in the trackpad for free.

    And the screen is perfect, no yellow tint etc

    I'd really think of going refurb if I was you with a 27in model.
  11. MR.Raul macrumors regular


    Jul 28, 2010
    Yes Icaras, I got the high end 27" with the 2GB GPU.
    Want to play some BF3 when it comes out, and it looks like it might be quite demanding from the specs released on it. (yet not official though)
    I tend to get the "best" when I do get a computer, cause I keep it for a while, just like I did with the PC I built before this iMac.
  12. mac-ho macrumors member

    I don't know anyone that bought the 27" and wished they had bought the 21". Including ME!
  13. tempusfugit macrumors 65816

    May 21, 2009
    Here here!
  14. robgendreau macrumors 68040

    Jul 13, 2008
    If in doubt, get the smaller one. You can always add a second monitor and get even more screen real estate for about the same price as the bigger iMac, or just go for another 27" monitor for $300 which would be about $100 more.

  15. Dresevski macrumors 6502

    May 6, 2011
    Ever watch movies on your computer? The 27" is an immaculate screen for 1080p and just about anything else. Sure there is some extra space that is unused but it reduces clutter when you want a few windows open.
  16. v66jack macrumors 6502a


    May 20, 2009
    London, UK
    How big is the room your putting it in. If your in a broom cupboard then get the 21.5 but if you've got a decent sized room with a big desk go for the beasty 27"

    For just internet browsing and iTunes an 11" MBA would do you fine.

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