buying dilemma with imac...

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by acrahm, Jun 29, 2010.

  1. acrahm macrumors regular

    Mar 12, 2007
    I am ready to pull the trigger and purchase an imac, but i am torn between two machines...
    little background, i have a 3 yr old 2.16 c2d MBP and a 1.5 yr old mini.

    i will use the machine mostly for music, web, some photo and video editing and some website creation/editing. i had been using the mbp for these in the past.

    I am torn between these 3 machines:

    27 i5 w/ATI Radeon HD 4850 graphics w/512 mb


    21.5-3.06GHz Intel Core 2 Duo NVIDIA GeForce 9400M w/256MB

    21.5 3.06GHz Intel Core 2 Duo ATI Radeon HD 4670 w/ 256mb

    i am having a hard time justifying the extra $400-$700 for the 27. the screen size isnt a huge deal, but are the "guts" that much better?
  2. chaosbunny macrumors 68000


    Mar 11, 2005
    down to earth, far away from any clouds
    Well, the two Core 2 Duo options are not really a big upgrade to what you currently have in terms of performance - so I'd either get the i5 or wait for the next update.
  3. acrahm thread starter macrumors regular

    Mar 12, 2007
    that was my thinking, but am i wrong to think an 21' upgrade is going to be similar price/specs as the i5?
  4. TheBritishBloke macrumors 68030


    Jul 21, 2009
    United Kingdom
    You need to remember.. The 27" is part of the Core-i Series.. And is a Quad Core. Whereas the C2D is slower (regardless of being half as many cores) and the quad core will help a lot, especially in virtualisation.

    The bigger screen is also amazing, you will be very happy with it.
  5. Doug183 macrumors newbie

    Mar 3, 2009
    In terms of performance, you will see little to no different in all those machines using those applications INCLUDING editing in Standard Def. In terms of Hi-Def editing and rendering H264, you will start to see some difference, but, not crazy differences and nothing that will blow your socks off. Render times will still be hours (like 4 hours down to 2 hours - if you are lucky), not cut down to minutes. The graphic chip comparisons, make little to no difference in these machines. FCP makes little to no use of the GPU at this time, unless you are using a MacPro and one of 2 expensive cards.

    Best bang for your buck in my opinion is put an SSD drive in either the mini or the MPB.

    If you just want a new machine, they all look good and don't worry. Get the middle of the road one as those are best bang for the buck, but the low end won't hurt either.
  6. acrahm thread starter macrumors regular

    Mar 12, 2007
    So for my uses, it doesnt seem like the 27 i5 worth the extra $700?
  7. DoFoT9 macrumors P6


    Jun 11, 2007
    i dont agree with that. i think adding the extra expenses now can give you another 3-4 years use over the C2D machine. it will last longer, and support GPU wise will be A LOT better.

    i say put in the investment and reap the benefits later on.
  8. J&JPolangin macrumors 68030

    Jul 5, 2008
    Thule GL @ the TOW
    #8 this point, I wouldn't spend any money on a machine with a C2D CPU in it...
  9. iMacThere4Iam macrumors regular

    Dec 28, 2009
    Nothing against the 21", but I agree that you'll love the 27" screen, and that the Quad Core will keep you up to date for a few years. Enjoy.
  10. acrahm thread starter macrumors regular

    Mar 12, 2007
    thanks everyone for the advice, i pulled the trigger on a 27 last night, cant wait to set it all up!
  11. iMikeT macrumors 68020

    Jul 8, 2006
    Congratulations on making the purchase. I'm currently looking to purchase the 27" iMac myself except with the i7 chip and I'll just put in an additional 4GB of myself.

    Too bad I didn't get to this post sooner, there was one thing no one asked you, how much do you need the machine now? The iMac line is due for a refresh soon and if I were you, I would have waited until after the refresh (which is exactly what I'm doing).

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