Comparisons? Worth the upgrade?

zentaco

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jul 28, 2010
2
0
Canada
Hi all.

I'm currently debating whether I should get a new iMac now that they've been refreshed. I'm using an early 2006 20" iMac Core Duo and have been itching to get something faster for the past few months, though the one I have is still in decent shape (beyond something that sounds like a squeaky fan sometimes). I'd like to upgrade to a quad i5 or i7 (leaning towards i7), but not sure whether the leap is worth it yet or not.. Would like to put 3D Studio Max on my computer through bootcamp or parallels, and while I'm not a huge computer gamer I'm interested in getting Portal 2 next year, and I'm not sure how my current iMac would handle these (regular Portal takes 5-10 minutes to load as is, with low-medium quality settings I think). I may upgrade to Adobe CS5 software somewhere down the line as well if my classes need it.

The free iPod Touch is drawing me as well (I'd be going through education store)..

So the question is, would it be worth upgrading my iMac for these things, especially to an i7? Are there any good sites with benchmarks/specs between the two (or even a 2009 iMac I guess since the specs/benchmarks wouldn't be too different)?
 

Hellhammer

Moderator emeritus
Dec 10, 2008
22,164
581
Finland
It will be a huge increase in performance. Your iMac scores about 2500 in GeekBench while i7 scores ~8200, that's 328% difference! That's only CPU and RAM benchmarks, the GPU is significantly better as well.

If you need it, buy it. If your current is still okay, then you could hold till next one but there won't be huge improvements in performance though
 

alust2013

macrumors 601
Feb 6, 2010
4,779
1
On the fence
That would be a very impressive difference, although you could save some money by sticking with the i5, as the performance difference between the quad i5 and the i7 is minimal unless you take advantage of the extra virtual cores available with the hyperthreading feature. Either one would smoke your current iMac though.
 

zentaco

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jul 28, 2010
2
0
Canada
Thanks for the responses. :)

That would be a very impressive difference, although you could save some money by sticking with the i5, as the performance difference between the quad i5 and the i7 is minimal unless you take advantage of the extra virtual cores available with the hyperthreading feature. Either one would smoke your current iMac though.
The hyperthreading is one thing I've wondered about.. On one hand I've heard it can boost performance a decent amount, but I've also heard that not a lot of software takes advantage of it yet. :confused:
 

Hellhammer

Moderator emeritus
Dec 10, 2008
22,164
581
Finland
The hyperthreading is one thing I've wondered about.. On one hand I've heard it can boost performance a decent amount, but I've also heard that not a lot of software takes advantage of it yet. :confused:
Yeah, it can boost by up to 30%. I don't know would 3D Studio do but CS5 would, at least some apps. In future, more apps will support it so if you want to "future-proof" your purchase, it should be worth it. It's not that much more
 

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