Buying first Mac, need help

Discussion in 'iMac' started by hellion27, Dec 19, 2013.

  1. hellion27 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2013
    #1
    So i've finally seen the light and i'm breaking up with microsoft.
    I'll be getting an iMac and i'm looking at a 21.5.

    From reading around the forums, I know for sure i have to upgrade to fusion at a minimum since it comes with a 5400 rpm

    I'll be doing very minimal gaming on it and when i do its the lego games (dont ask). Majority of the work on it will be everyday computing (browsing, word documents, excel, office) and photoshop and imovie.

    I'll be editing alot of pictures but not for work just personal.
    Do you guys think an i5 will be enough? and should i be looking at 16gb ram as well?

    also i see 2013 models already as refurbs, should i wait till a fusion drive/16gb comes out, or do you guys think that will be in a couple of months?

    Thanks for the help
     
  2. jondunford macrumors 6502

    jondunford

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2013
    Location:
    Going for a poo Moderator
    #2
    an i5 and 8GB RAM is fine for you, but i would go for a pure SSD if you can, its something that even the lightest users will notice a huge difference with
     
  3. robgendreau macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    #3
    If you have to ask, the i5 processor is probably fine for you. Some Photoshop work could benefit from a faster processor, but other upgrades might be more important.

    Don't worry about RAM; it's the last user-serviceable item with iMacs so you can purchase more and install it yourself. The refurbs at the Mac store almost always (always?) come with less than max memory. You won't see 16GB there.

    I would definitely go with at least a Fusion. It's a 128GB SSD and a HDD, and it sounds as if you might be able to get by with that small a SSD. If you need more HDD space that's easy and cheaper to add externally. And if the HDD part of the Fusion drive fails, I expect you'd still be left with an internal 128 GB SSD and an external USB or Tbolt drive. Still pretty great. In day to day use that SSD will make more of a difference than processor or RAM; once you use one it's hard to go back to a plodding platter Mac.
     
  4. jondunford macrumors 6502

    jondunford

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2013
    Location:
    Going for a poo Moderator
    #4
    unfortunately the 21.5 iMac ram can't be upgraded :/
     
  5. hellion27 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2013
    #5
    exactly, thats why i was asking about the 16gb ram from the get go

    the other option i have is to go with a 27inch refurb with a fusion drive and upgrade ram later...probably will cost less than a 21.5 with 16gb. Also 27" comes with a 7200 rpm even in the fusion drive...only thing tha scares me about the 27 is the sheer size
     
  6. robgendreau macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    #6
    Whoa! Sorry 'bout that. There are a lot of iMacs in the refurb store and none with 16GB, so I think you're SOL on that count. Unreal.

    OTOH, the 27" is a pretty killer machine. You couldn't go wrong with it, although only you know if the bump in specs is worth it. Nice having that big screen I must say.
     
  7. minimalism macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2013
    #7
    The 21.5 inch is good but since you said you'll do some iMovie and Photo-editing, I encourage you to go for the 27 inch one. I often find myself running out of screen real estate on my old 21.5 inch, which is why I got myself the 27, totally loving it!
     
  8. hellion27 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Dec 19, 2013
    #8
    really 21.5 was not enough?
    hmmm i guess i can see it
    but isnt the 27" massive?
     
  9. minimalism macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2013
    #9
    It basically boils down on how much real estate (screen space) you're using. At first, I was completely blown away by how massive the 21.5 inch since I moved from a 19 inch one back in 2010. However, after three years of use and abuse, I realized that it really wasn't enough for editing large photos, browsing and other computing works.

    I really encourage you to try out the 27 inch and see how it feels. Indeed, it is intimidating at first but give it a few weeks, you'll get used to it. Some people are totally satisfied with their 21.5, others needed more.
     
  10. Nismo73 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2013
    #10
    After a few weeks, 27" seems normal. I have my old Samsung 23" 1920 x 1080 sitting next to my 27" - the 23" looks like a laptop screen.
     

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