Faster Processor or More Memory???

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by hower1k, Apr 4, 2007.

  1. hower1k macrumors newbie

    Apr 4, 2007
    I'm looking to purchase a new 20'' iMac and I'm wondering what would be better for someone who is looking to encode a bunch of dvds for :apple: tv.

    I'm contemplating either getting 2 gigs of memory or upgrading to the 2.33ghz processor, so what would be a better upgrade?
  2. herr_neumann macrumors 6502


    Mar 27, 2003
    Roseville, Ca
    Get the faster processor, you can always add then memory very easily later. You can't for the processor.
  3. NJuul macrumors 6502

    Mar 15, 2006
    Processor. You'll get a 10% increase in speed and can always add more RAM.
  4. mad jew Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

    Apr 3, 2004
    Adelaide, Australia
    Plus, the processor is the integral part of the encoding whereas extra RAM will be relatively less beneficial for this process.
  5. gavd macrumors 6502a

    Jan 30, 2006
    I'd normally say the RAM, but if you're going to be doing lots of video encoding, then I agree with the other guys that upgrading the Processor will give you more benefit.
  6. hower1k thread starter macrumors newbie

    Apr 4, 2007
  7. robPOD macrumors 6502

    Jun 19, 2006
  8. jesteraver macrumors 6502

    May 16, 2006
    Montreal, QC
    If only they would put like 2GB x 1600 MHz DDR3 memory in all computers would be awesome *zoom zoom*. I guess only when Penryn comes around. Plus a nice quad-core for the iMac would be nice. Also a faster FSB :thumbsup:

    I cant wait for decent size and cheap SSD.

    Probably replace get another computer by like 2012 hopefully that will work out.
  9. SteveG4Cube macrumors 6502

    Jul 22, 2002
    MontCo., PA
    I'd leave the processor and RAM alone and get the bigger hard drive option.
  10. Zwhaler macrumors 604


    Jun 10, 2006
    I went for both, but if I had to pick one back when I was in the market, I would have went for the processor, because the RAM can be easily upgraded in the future, as others have said.
  11. AlexisV macrumors 68000


    Mar 12, 2007
    Manchester, UK
    No you won't :) A difference of 170Mhz on the same processor is miniscule in today's processors. You might have got 10% on a Pentium II, but it's probably 4 or 5% on the Core 2.
  12. RichP macrumors 68000


    Jun 30, 2003
    Motor City
    For encoding, processor. Encoding is very processor intensive.

    If you were talking about pshop and illustrator, and had to chose only one, I would say RAM.

    And, as others have said, you can always update the RAM later. RAM from sources other than apple is significantly cheaper than getting it from them direct.
  13. gnasher729 macrumors P6


    Nov 25, 2005
    For that specific task, tons of memory won't make much difference. For example, Handbrake runs happily within 30 MB of memory. So if you wanted a machine for encoding DVDs and nothing else, the faster processor would help more.

    On the other hand: More memory will help with everything as soon as you start using multiple programs at the same time. And encoding videos takes so long that you don't wait for it anyway. My approach: Rip DVDs with Mac The Ripper. Once you have half a dozen DVDs ripped, start Handbrake, set it up to convert the DVDs from the harddisk, and then let it run; with H.264 and two pass this will take ages, but the Mac will do that without any help. MacOS X is absolutely usable while this happens, and whether it takes 25 hours to rip half a dozen DVDs or 22 hours doesn't make much difference - you won't be watching it and wait for it to finish anyway.

    So I would actually go for the memory. And a 500 GB external harddisk :)

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