Base Retina iMac safest choice?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by imanidiot, Dec 8, 2014.

  1. imanidiot macrumors 6502a

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    May 1, 2011
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    Denver, CO
    #1
    I had but had to return the base configuration Retina iMac because of dead pixels. I'm about to re-order, but am tempted to get the upgraded CPU & GPU. I am, however, concerned about all the complaints I've read, here and elsewhere, about heat and noise issues with the upgraded machines. Mind, during the short time I had my base machine, I notice nothing amiss regarding these issues, but I'm a bit wary of ordering the upgraded GPU/CPU and regretting it (due to heat and noise).

    Any words of wisdom/caution?

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. Kritzmire macrumors member

    Kritzmire

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2014
    #2
    i have the i7 295x
    i only hear the fan when im gaming and its hardly an issue
    even after gaming for several hours ive touched the back of the imac and its cool, so no heat issues, just the fan doing its job
     
  3. imanidiot thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    May 1, 2011
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    Denver, CO
    #3
    Thanks for the reply.
    I don't game so I'm guessing/hoping it wouldn't be an issue? I know that noise is very subjective, however, but it's never had a problem with my mid-2010 iMac, and I would find it hard to believe that the new machine wouldn't be quieter than that (?).
     
  4. fathergll macrumors 6502a

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    Sep 3, 2014
    #4
    I guess the question is why do you need the upgraded cpu and gpu? Unless you have a specific use case for it I'd opt for the base model. Base model runs much cooler and is obviously cheaper.
     
  5. imanidiot thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #5
    That is, of course, the $64k question. And the thing is, given my rather modest needs (creating and exporting text files in Pages, email, surfing, creating little projects in iMovie, and general but my no means involved use of iPhoto), the base machine is probably move than I need already. I just thought if I'm going to spend this much money as it is, maybe I should max it out. Which, now that I think about it, would be basically spending more money just for the hell of it, i.e. for no real purpose that need/use could justify.
     
  6. imanidiot thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #6
    I've decided to re-order the base model, and hope for a good screen. Next year, should they do an upgrade to address some of the cited issues, and I find it compelling (and should I find it necessary), I can always sell this one. But for now, I want something nice for now, if that makes any sense. Remember, I'm coming from a 4-1/2 old machine.

    Anyway, thanks for your input.
     
  7. robgendreau macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    #7
    I wouldn't base a purchase decision based on some complaints on an internet forum. And, based on the "wisdom" herein, you will also be disappointed in the performance of the base machine vs. the upgraded machine.

    But good luck.
     
  8. edjrwinnt macrumors member

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    Mar 8, 2008
    Location:
    North Ridgeville, Ohio
    #8
    My next iMac is for my home/part-time home office machine, and I don't do anything that requires anything really super fast. I just multi-task through many different things throughout the day with my home office, like checking email, surfing the web, using Dreamweaver to edit web pages, Photoshop for editing and creating images, and Excel for spreadsheets. I also use a VM to run legacy applications that I wrote in Visual Basic 6 a long time ago.

    However, I want to future proof my next mac and I think it's worth it to spend the few hundred extra for the faster processor, better video card and bigger hard drive. I'm not worried about heat and noise either.

    I'm still using a late 2009 iMac i5 with 16 gigs of ram and I added a SSD hard drive. I'm happy with it for what I do with it. I want a retina display though for a major website design project this winter though, and my biggest question is should I buy now, or wait for an even better retina screen in the second gen Retina iMac?
     
  9. forg0t macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2014
    #9
    Are you really asking the safest choice or the best choice for you?

    It's an all in one, the safest is to upgrade every single thing you can because if there's the off chance you may need extra power in one area then you're screwed.
     
  10. fathergll macrumors 6502a

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    Sep 3, 2014
    #10
    :rolleyes: Brilliant logic considering multiple people who repair Macs for a living on here have stated that heat issues are the biggest issue with them down the road. Unless you have a specific use case for a GPU that will be running at 200 degrees F at load i'd opt for a cooler running components while saving money.
     
  11. imanidiot thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #11
    I understand your thinking, but again, the observations/experience of many users lead me to be leery of heat issues and noise, both of which are of concern to me. And noise from the fan kicking in because of heat would be an absolute deal-breaker, since I work in a quiet room and am rather highly sensitive to it.
     
  12. forg0t macrumors member

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    Aug 13, 2014
    #12
    They both run hot, all iMacs run hot. All macs run hot.

    Nobody knows for sure if the m295x will prematurely die, I don't care if these people who "repair Macs for a living" have been doing it all their life. They don't know crap compared to the engineers at Apple about the iMac.

    Sure the m295x may die soon, or it may last forever. Maybe in a few months the m290 will develop problems. Nobody knows, but one thing that's for sure is that Apple knows that people will be using this iMac to its potential with such a resolution. Either they know something we don't, or they have a large sack of cash out aside to repair our computers on their dime. And I'm willing to bet that they're smarter than that.

    @Imanidiot, you have been saying yourself that you do basic computer things. Probably an 06 iMac will satisfy your needs. But you're complaining about heat and fan noise. For basic computing, the iMac is silent and the heat should be normal. This applies to base and upgraded iMacs.

    But should you need that small amount of power during those rare occurences would you not want to have it? Theoretically, the m290x should be under load much more often than the m295x since its weaker. So that means hotter temps and faster fans.

    Under normal conditions, my iMac sounds silent. I can't tell if its on sometimes when the screen goes off and my external hard drive is louder, and that is fanless. Under full load, whatever I'm running is making much more noise than the fan is and I have to turn off my speakers in order to hear the fan. And I'm not sure what people used before this iMac and are complaining, but my old tower sounded like the morning garbage truck compared to the iMac.
     
  13. imanidiot thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #13
    I thank you for your thoughts. I'm still debating this. Quite neurotic, actually. I'm afraid that if I don't spring for the upgraded CPU/GPU I'll regret it, and if I do I'll regret it, if that makes any sense. Anyway, I don't want to agonize over this forever, I just want to make a decision and be done with it.
     
  14. fathergll macrumors 6502a

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    #14

    Ignorant way of looking at it. It's like saying BMW mechanics are idiots because they see recurring problems with certain engines. The Apple engineers are brilliant but that doesn’t mean their creations don’t have problems. Apple engineers aren’t the ones who deal with them years down the road. The fact is the 295 runs hotter and heat is an issue in iMacs. So no… it’s not a no brain decision. If you’re editing a 4k feature then yes by all means go all out on upgrades. If you don’t have an actual case for needed upgraded components then one should be caution on dropping more money on it.
     
  15. JPRain macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2012
    #15
    As a guy who buys computers for a living, let me just say that in general you're best off buying the minimum you need and buying more often over buying more than you need and buying less often. So in this case if you're planning to keep this computer for say 2 years and you plan to future proof by buying the upgrade, don't and buy a new one in 18 months instead.

    That will most likely be two Intel release cycles from now and the core i5 or it's equivalent in 18 months will be better than the core i7 now. Likewise for the GPU.

    In addition you can get a better deal on the base models, I know Amazon has a base model right now for $100 off list and you can probably find an even better deal than that, so the price goes down even more. Also, Apple usually discounts their new models after they've been on the market for a year or so.

    Just my $.02.
     
  16. Cape Dave macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2012
    Location:
    Northeast
    #16
    I am just like you. I split the dif and got the 295x with the i5. SILENT. And I do light stuff like you. Have not had fan go above default in over a month.

    Figured with all the pixels, the faster GPU might come in handy even on a slow day :)
     
  17. imanidiot thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Denver, CO
    #17
    That's what I'm thinking. For now I'm sure the base model will be more than adequate for my needs, and if there is a significant upgrade in the next year or so, and I feel it worth it for me, then I can always sell and buy again.

    Anyway, the point is now moot as my base model shipped this morning. At least I don't have to go back and forth about what to do for awhile I hope. Anyway I'm not going to think about it and hope for the best.

    ----------

    I went ahead and stayed with the base model, which shipped this morning. I'm glad that I don't have to agonize about it anymore, I'm sure it's more computer than I need as it is. And given my modest needs, I'll never notice what I'm missing. And if I am missing something, next year the tech will be more mature and I can always go through all this again:confused:
     
  18. iPhisch macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2010
    Location:
    Indiana
    #18
    I picked up a base model last weekend, and compared to my 2010 Mac mini this Retina beast is absolutely slaying everything I can throw at it. I'm finding that the photo editing abilities meet every need I could ever think of, although the screen is making me find out that I wasn't as good of a photographer as I thought I was...

    Walked out of Best Buy with one under my arm in less than 10 minutes.
     
  19. forg0t macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2014
    #19
    You don't need to justify your reason for buying the base model with me, especially not by calling me ignorant. I don't care what you choose to buy. The OP just asked for opinions so I'm giving him my opinion. Seriously, we're both on the Apple side here. But you're just one of those people who must attack everyone else to feel better about your own purchase.

    @imanidiot, congrats. Hope you're happy with your imac.
     

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