Best iMac for $

amnichols10

macrumors regular
Original poster
May 19, 2008
223
22
Looking to get an iMac for my wife and I wanted to know what is the best configuration for my money in terms of performance and longevity. This will be the "house" computer and won't be doing much heavy lifting application-wise outside of basic needs. It'll probably be more for storing a lot of media and things.å

I know that this isn't the first or last time that this question will be asked and I wanted to get opinions from the community. Thanks for reading and look forward to hearing what you have to say.
 

jwm2

macrumors regular
Jan 5, 2012
231
0
The entry level mac is a great machine. I run my businesses from it and it can do everything i've thrown at it plus some. I can even run portal 2 on highest settings and every other game i've played so far. Just put some extra ram in it and you are good to go. No need to spend extra money if she isn't going to use it.
 
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Kungshi

macrumors member
May 11, 2011
47
0
Yes the entry level iMac should be perfect. Now if you have a lot of music, video or programs that you want to put on it you may want to make sure the hard drive is large enough, but honestly for 90% of families it is the best choice.
 
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AcesHigh87

macrumors 6502a
Jan 11, 2009
954
293
New Brunswick, Canada
IMO the one I got (high end 21.5 with the i7 + third party RAM) is the best bang for your buck but for what you need the base model will be more than enough. As mentioned adding in some third party RAM is always a good idea and can be done cheaply in about 10 minutes without doing any harm to your warranty.
 
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bagelche

macrumors 6502
Nov 2, 2007
434
0
Western Mass.
Seconding Blomkvist. Definitely consider buying refurbished. As good as new with full warranty and you save money. What's not to love?
 
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o2sys

macrumors member
Dec 2, 2011
52
0
NYC
Used/Refurb 24" 7,1 iMac in my humble opinion is was the best $ iMac for me.

Bought it locally for $600 with two magic mouse, 1 wireless keyboard, and 1 full wired keyboard with original boot cds (no box though ;))

It was the best compromise for the screen size and performance. I just needed a reliable daily with some basic music recording/synth tools.

If you want newer is go small (21") or go big (27") and thes price is at another end of the spectrum.
 
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ELMI0001

macrumors 6502
Jan 5, 2009
375
6
Olympic Hills GC
Looking to get an iMac for my wife and I wanted to know what is the best configuration for my money in terms of performance and longevity. This will be the "house" computer and won't be doing much heavy lifting application-wise outside of basic needs. It'll probably be more for storing a lot of media and things.å

I know that this isn't the first or last time that this question will be asked and I wanted to get opinions from the community. Thanks for reading and look forward to hearing what you have to say.
There should be a refresh around the corner according to the Buyers Guide; https://buyersguide.macrumors.com/. So If you can, wait a little while.

Currently, if you order the entry level iMac from Apple you cannot increase your hard drive. The refresh may address this - 1 TB standard? - but I would suggest going with the bigger screen and upping the hard drive to at least 1TB. That should future-proof you for a couple of years.
 
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yashi

macrumors member
Oct 13, 2011
59
0
Refurbished base model 21.5" or 27" is the best bang for the buck for sure. The 27" screen alone is that of a $800-$900 monitor, so you're paying less than $600 for the computer itself if you get a refurb for $1419.
 
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GibMcFragger

macrumors newbie
Jan 11, 2012
23
0
Vancity, BC
A refurb 2011 27 inch iMac is awfully tempting...
I just bought one and friggin LOVE it. Nothing wrong with a refurb. You save a couple hundred dollars (can get the higher model as refurb for the same price as one step down new) and the warranty is the same as new. There is no way of telling that it's a refurb other than the box it arrives in. :)
 
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fnq v much

macrumors newbie
Mar 25, 2007
16
1
Same thing (?) here in australia = $1199 or is a better deal the previous model for another twenty?
http://store.apple.com/au/product/FC509X/A
No thunder bolt or hd cam or lion installed, but with support for 16 GB ram and a 1TB hard drive; what does the forum think?
Seems to be more turnover for the older since I've been watching the store ...
 
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onthecouchagain

macrumors 604
Mar 29, 2011
7,382
1
I just bought one and friggin LOVE it. Nothing wrong with a refurb. You save a couple hundred dollars (can get the higher model as refurb for the same price as one step down new) and the warranty is the same as new. There is no way of telling that it's a refurb other than the box it arrives in. :)
What box does it arrive in?

And did you notice any physical blemishes? Does it give you any information as to how long ago it was owned, or for how long, or what might have been replaced?

Depending on how the 2012 iMacs turn out, I'm seriously considering refurb. 2011 27".
 
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amnichols10

macrumors regular
Original poster
May 19, 2008
223
22
I seen that there is a refresh coming around the corner. But im going to need to get one sooner than that unfortunately.

Was going to most likely going to go with the high end 21.5 inch. Is there anything that I should add on? AppleCare is automatic and I know that I can get cheaper RAM via 3rd party sites. What about processor speed? Worth the extra $200?

Will definitely look into the refurb line as well. Thanks for all the responses. You guys are helping out so much.
 
Comment

AcesHigh87

macrumors 6502a
Jan 11, 2009
954
293
New Brunswick, Canada
I seen that there is a refresh coming around the corner. But im going to need to get one sooner than that unfortunately.

Was going to most likely going to go with the high end 21.5 inch. Is there anything that I should add on? AppleCare is automatic and I know that I can get cheaper RAM via 3rd party sites. What about processor speed? Worth the extra $200?

Will definitely look into the refurb line as well. Thanks for all the responses. You guys are helping out so much.
As I said above for me the processing power was worth it but I do video editing on my iMac. If it's just going to be average use for you the i5 will certainly be plenty strong. The i7 is a great processor without a doubt but for your uses the i5 will do.

Enjoy the iMac, whichever you get :D
 
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