Advice on Buying iMac i7

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Pixelmage, Feb 1, 2011.

  1. Pixelmage macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2008
    #1
    I am thinking about getting the iMac 2.93GHz Quad-Core Intel Core i7. With the following specs:
    - 8/16GB memory
    - 256GB SSD and 2TB ATA combo
    - 27in screen

    I keep reading pros and cons on the i7 over the i5. Some say the hyper-threading is not well managed by Mac OS X. Other threads say the i5 is just as good as the i7. Barefeats had a decent review on this model but someone said that the performance is designed to show off the chip and may not correspond to real world experiences.

    I would like to do some video and image editing and supposedly the i7 would be ideal for it. I would like to keep the machine for at least 3 years.

    I would like to get people's thoughts on this, especially those that actually own the latest version of the iMac i7. Thanks.
     
  2. TMRaven macrumors 68020

    TMRaven

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2009
    #2
    Nah if anything, osx handles hyperthreading better than usual. Even stuff like fullscreening a flash video will be hyperthreaded, according to my resource monitor.

    I wouldn't buy the 8/16gb ram from apple, as they gouge the price. Pick up some additional ram off crucial, newegg or amazon.
     
  3. Pixelmage thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2008
    #3
    TMRaven. That is what I was thinking. At least in this latest generation of the Mac OS and Intel-based Macs that has hyper-threading. There was all this talk about fake cores, high end apps getting confused by hyper-threading. I would of think by now it would be better.

    How is your iMac running when the processor is under the gun? Noisy fans? Lots heat?
     
  4. rayward macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2007
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    #4
    I have an i7 without the SSD option. When I'm putting it through its paces, the fan kicks in after a while, but it's not obtrusive. If you're in an office environment, I doubt you'd hear it at all. My home office is pretty quiet, so I hear it but it doesn't bother me - in a perverse kind of way it makes me feel good that I'm making the thing work hard!
     
  5. Pixelmage thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2008
    #5
    I have a new 3.06GHz Intel Core 2 Duo iMac at work. Funny thing is I haven't heard the fans roaring at all for the past six months.

    I have a PowerMac that every so often would go through periods of fan roaring. And that's loud and annoying. I am just hoping the SSD and ATA combo drives (in conjunction when the processor is working hard) will not generate a lot of heat.

    Also, some of the users I came across have their iMacs configured with only a 1TB internal. Is this mostly because of cost, a 2TB is slower and/or hotter than a 1TB, or is it the potential to lose that much data if the 2TB fails?

    I will not be paying for it so I figure why not a 2TB and max out the memory as much as possible?
     
  6. talmy macrumors 601

    talmy

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2009
    Location:
    Oregon
    #6
    My experience is that when driving all 4 cores and hyperthreads the back of the system gets very hot and the fans do get loud (but still quieter than other systems I've owned). I've had the computer for 14 months now and the heat hasn't seemed to harm it.

    The scheduler can differentiate between the virtual (hyperthread) cores and physical cores so it will distribute tasks among physical cores first. At one time I had a Linux workstation with two Xeon processors with hyperthreading that ran slower if hyperthreading was turned on, but OSes have gotten sophisticated with hyperthreading.

    I've got the 1TB drive because I didn't need all that capacity (I'm sitting around 300GB) and store most data on a server (4TB there).
     
  7. Pixelmage thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2008
    #7
    Thanks everyone for their input on this iMac so far. I am leaning towards this iMac. However, having been a desktop owner for soooo long (PowerMac G5) it feels slightly weird to go from that to an iMac.

    Just wondering, how would the iMac i7 stack up against a Mac Pro 3.2GHz Quad-Core Intel in terms or performance? Obviously the Mac Pro has expandability on it's side but of course no display. BTW -- the 27" Apple Cinema Display only comes in glossy, not matte, correct?
     
  8. davusicion, Feb 2, 2011
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2011

    davusicion macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2011
    Location:
    Virginia
    #8
    Yes I've been wondering the same thing. It seems like everyone is dancing around your question and adding info that wasn't asked. Lol.

    In a month or so, I'll be getting a refurbished 21.5 iMac. Its 3.06 MHz with 4 gb of ram. I want to run Apple Logic Pro and Omnisphere digital programs on it. I also want to work heavily with iMovie 11 and I also watch a lot of movies. I'm upgrading from a G4 tower 10.4.10 OS X. Will I be getting my money's worth for $1,153.95?

    Also, is there anyway I can get it, tax free? Does anyone have any codes I can use.
     
  9. TMRaven macrumors 68020

    TMRaven

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2009
  10. davusicion macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2011
    Location:
    Virginia
    #10
    n
     
  11. davusicion macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2011
    Location:
    Virginia
    #11
    Uh this might be a stupid question, but you're not Payton Manning are you?
     
  12. skiltrip macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    May 6, 2010
    Location:
    New York
    #12
    You can buy Macs tax free from Sweetwater.com (unless you live in Indiana). Sometimes the price of a refurb plus tax ends up to be around the same as a brand new one from Sweetwater or another tax-free seller.
     
  13. robertpetry macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2009
    Location:
    Indianapolis, IN
    #13
    Great. And I live in Indiana. I'm not Peyton Manning either. (note spelled with an e). :)
     
  14. skiltrip macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    May 6, 2010
    Location:
    New York
    #14
    Ain't that the luck. 50 states and you gotta live in IN. it just cost you about $100. Lol.
     
  15. davusicion macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2011
    Location:
    Virginia
    #15
    Thanks Robert spelled with an e. lol. I'll check it out.

    Do you happen to know how much of a difference in speed iMac processor i3 has over the intel core 2? I mean, is there really that much difference in performance wise? I mean, for a guy like me he wants to put 2 different music programs on his HD both requiring 50 plus gigs of space each?
     
  16. skiltrip macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    May 6, 2010
    Location:
    New York
    #16
    What "music programs" are we talking about?
     
  17. davusicion macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2011
    Location:
    Virginia
    #17
    Ominesphere by Spetrasonics and Logic Pro 9
     
  18. TMRaven macrumors 68020

    TMRaven

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2009
    #18
    Now why would you think that.
     
  19. davusicion macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2011
    Location:
    Virginia
    #19
    So you really aren't Peyton Manning?
     

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