Buying advise - What options might work for me the best

Discussion in 'iMac' started by ZeusMutation, Feb 25, 2015.

  1. ZeusMutation macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2015
    #1
    Hi All,

    First post, I apologize in advance if this is the wrong place for my questions.

    I'm able to afford upgrading my computer. This will probably be the only expendable funds for upgrading my machine so, my thoughts are to get the "goods" while I can.

    Currently using a late 2006 24" iMac w/3GB RAM

    In truth I don't do much with my home computer anymore. It's become mostly a Internet surfer. The majority of storage is filled with music and photos. I'm an audio engineer, some files are large.
    Using an external drive is a neccecity for me. I'm looking for fast file transfer, I mean fast. Two issues I have now, and not surprisingly, is any file over 2gb takes longer than I want using FW800. If I try and play a video file from an EHD the audio lag & image quality suck.

    I'm asumming any new machine should fix my issues. I'd also like my next iMac to last as long as this one. (actually typing on 1st gen iPad w/wi-fi) ugh!!

    I was going to order a 5k Retina. My questions:
    1. upgrade GC to M295X or no? I read heat issues make it a potential bad choice.
    2. Web pages display poorly, at this time. Resizing needed, will I notice any wow browsing sites? True or False
    3. How long should the tech in the new machine be relevant, realistically?

    I don't play any computer games
    I feel the machine is way more than I need, yet I don't want a smaller screen. If they offered a non-retina 24" I'd probably get that model. Retina seems like the future more than the now? Obviously IDK.

    What will give me the most gain regarding web pages loading as fast as possible and the ability to watch HD video from external HD's?

    27" 5k
    4.0
    8gb ram - ill upgrade to 16 myself.
    graphic card choice still undecided
    516gb flash

    From my recollection those are the internal config areas. I planned on a 3TB Lacie desk ridden EHD using TB2 connectivity.

    Please share your wisdom, thank you!
     
  2. matreya macrumors 65816

    matreya

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2009
    #2
    1. Yes, Yosemite animations like those done by Mission Control flow better with the high-end GPU.

    2. Web pages display better on a Retina iMac.

    3. Personally, I look to replace my Macs after the applecare runs out and I notice problems with the mac... so 3-5 years is a good usage term in my book.
    I got just over 6 years from my previous Mac, it was a MacPro1,1.
     
  3. andy9l macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2009
    Location:
    England, UK
    #3
    Buying advise - What options might work for me the best


    1. The heat issue affects gamers more than anyone. The GPU just throttles itself when under sustained heavy load. Nothing you would ever notice with your usage. It still outperforms the M290X, which appears to somewhat struggle today, let alone after 2 or 3 major OS updates.

    2. I don't think that is a thing. Most images on websites are slightly blurry - ie. non-retina - but that will gradually improve as businesses update their websites.

    3. About 3-4 years. The 5K iMac offers very similar performance to the non-retina version, which is already 1.5 years old.

    4. Yes, HiDPI screens will continue to increase in popularity. Same as with HD, then 4K and now 8K televisions.

    5. For your usage, I would recommend the following:

    3.5GHz i5
    4GB M295X
    256GB or 512GB SSD (Flash storage)
    8GB RAM

    The most important upgrade for you is the Flash storage. From what you're saying, the 4GHz i7 upgrade would be wasted. You don't do anything that would utilise its hyper threading capabilities. That said, having the i7 may help with resale if you plan to do that later.

    As for RAM, you can get another 2x4GB yourself and put that in the back. 16GB would be much more than you need, but it's dirt cheap, so...hey-ho. You almost certainly won't notice a performance difference between 8GB and 16GB with your usage.
     
  4. Meister Suspended

    Meister

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2013
    #4
    What apps do you run that make use of 4.0 ghz and 16gb RAM?
     
  5. redheeler macrumors 603

    redheeler

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2014
    #5
    Since all of your other questions have already been answered...


    Some images look twice as crisp, but other images will look slightly blurry/pixelated. It mainly depends on if the site has optimized the images for HiDPI displays.

    It's much more common to see sites optimized today then it was when I first got my rMBP back in 2012, and the amount of optimization will be gradually increasing.

    However, even on the increasingly few sites unaware of the technology, text will always look twice as crisp.


    Yes, retina is the future. Since the first rMBP came out HiDPI has been catching on because of the greatly increased clarity it offers over standard displays. The Retina iMac will be completely replacing the non-retinas not too long from now, and adoption of 5K and similar HiDPI resolutions will eventually become widespread.

    Of course :D
     
  6. yjchua95 macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2011
    Location:
    GVA, KUL, MEL (current), ZQN
    #6
    You beat me to it :D

    If the OP is just using it for internet surfing, even the 1.4GHz/8/1TB Fusion baseline 21.5" iMac would have suited him really fine for several years.
     
  7. ZeusMutation thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2015
    #7
    Thanks everyone.

    The only intense program I'll use is Pro Tools. I hoped to make video shorts for my band too. I don't see any other activity that's all that demanding.

    I thought 4.0 for two reasons: future & because I can. I'm not set on either philosophy.

    Nobody addressed file transfers yet? Did I cover it myself unknowingly...

    After re-reading my post, I see another error. Tried to convey I don't want a screen downsize so, 24" or larger is what I'd like. Therefore I'm not interested in 21.5.
    Because of the all in one design, I've taken my computer lots of places. I feel they are quite portable for such a beast. Again, I'd like a 24" or larger screen.

    As for resale... Does my current late '06 model have any value where it's worth trying sell it? I figured not, but IDK. Curious if the 5k might retain more after 7 years moving into its 8th as my current rig has.

    I love the simplicity of the Mac OS X. I'd rather keep buying them and be it overkill than deal with windows PC's ever again, at home.
     
  8. matreya macrumors 65816

    matreya

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2009
    #8
    File transfers to external drives on the retina iMac can be considerably faster when using Thunderbolt and RAID 0 (just so long as you keep a backup of all your necessary files)

    Even a regular USB3 external hard drive will be much faster than what you're used to with USB2 and FW800..
     
  9. Meister Suspended

    Meister

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2013
    #9
    Since $$$ seems to be no objective, I'd recommend maxing everything out and getting external thunderbolt exclosures and sticking ssds in it as needed.
     
  10. redheeler macrumors 603

    redheeler

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2014
    #10
    You need to stop being so obsessed with saving people money. I'm surprised you aren't recommending 2011 MBAs with 2 GB RAM to everyone just using their computer for light tasks :rolleyes:
     
  11. Meister Suspended

    Meister

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2013
    #11
    I don't think you read my post you quoted. :rolleyes:
     
  12. ZeusMutation, Feb 26, 2015
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2015

    ZeusMutation thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2015
    #12
    My budget is $4k… I don't want to spend that, but when I looked at 27" Non-5K the price difference after upgrading was $250. That's just silly to me.

    Now, can I have a great mac for a lot less and still get at least 24" of screen delight? Please direct me/show me, I'm interested.

    I should probably say… unless my computer is broken for whatever reason, I'll not be buying another for at least 5 years. I don't want the tech inside to be old before reaching middle age. I'm assuming Retina will be standard in a few with developer's/designer's utilizing it. I hate to not join in on all the fun. lol

    W/Pro Tools being my main thing… I'd like to take work home with me and edit. Otherwise its just net surfing.
     
  13. redheeler macrumors 603

    redheeler

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2014
    #13
    Just get the config andy9l recommended since it's apparent you don't need the i7. Upgrading the RAM is probably also unnecessary.
     
  14. matreya macrumors 65816

    matreya

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2009
    #14
    Buy the retina iMac with M295X. Buy extra RAM from OWC/Crucial. WIN!

    :)
     
  15. Meister Suspended

    Meister

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2013
    #15
    The iMac 5k is unique, there is no other 5k consumer screen like it and $4000 should buy you the maxed out version with the edu discount.
     
  16. ZeusMutation thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2015
    #16
    $3,297.00 - 27" Non-Retina

    3.5GHz Quad-core Intel Core i7, Turbo Boost up to 3.9GHz
    16GB 1600MHz DDR3 SDRAM - 2X8GB
    512GB Flash Storage
    Apple USB SuperDrive
    NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780M 4GB GDDR5


    $3,547.00 - 5K

    4.0GHz Quad-core Intel Core i7, Turbo Boost up to 4.4GHz
    8GB 1600MHz DDR3 SDRAM - 2x4GB
    512GB Flash Storage
    AMD Radeon R9 M295X 4GB GDDR5
    Apple USB SuperDrive
    Apple Magic Mouse
    Apple Wireless Keyboard (English) & User's Guide
    AppleCare Protection Plan for iMac - Auto-enroll
    Accessory Kit
     
  17. Meister Suspended

    Meister

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    Oct 10, 2013
    #17
    Buy this, but max out the ssd to 1tb.
     
  18. ZeusMutation thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2015
    #18
    Thanks everyone! As usual, I'm over analyzing things..
     
  19. redheeler macrumors 603

    redheeler

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2014
  20. andy9l macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2009
    Location:
    England, UK
    #20
    Agreed. The 5K with either 1TB Flash, or 512GB and a new iPad to replace that one you're holding ;)
     

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