OS X First iMac - to be used also for some gaming: need advice!

Discussion in 'Mac and PC Games' started by MarkLynch, Nov 10, 2014.

  1. MarkLynch macrumors newbie

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    Nov 10, 2014
    #1
    Hi guys, I know this is getting asked really often, but I really need a suggestion for my next rig. :)

    After extremely good experiences with my iPhones and iPad, I'd like to switch fully to the Apple ecosystem and buy my first Mac.
    I usually use my PC at home for light video/photo editing, office work, web browsing and yes, some gaming (mainly Blizzard games, nothing too hardcore).

    I'm undecided between the "old" 27inches iMac or the new Retina version, both mostly maxed out (i7, m295x, SSD in the latter.
    I'm a bit worried about overheating reports I'm reading these days regarding the riMac with the m295x, since I intend to do also some daily gaming with my Mac, even if i'm okay with 2kish resolution.

    So I'm asking to the experts here: would it be better to stay PC (sigh) and wait for a more powerful riMac, buy the standard iMac or it's safe to buy the riMac(+AppleCare obviously)?
    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. leenak macrumors 68020

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    Mar 10, 2011
    #2
    So I know a lot of people have general concerns but the general concerns seem to be geared towards those that are hardcore gamers, playing games for hours on end daily. I bought an RiMac and use it for some gaming and it is great but for any computer system, I'd recommend applecare. I'm not a fan of extended warranties but it is one I will buy.
     
  3. VI™ macrumors 6502a

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    Shepherdsturd, WV
    #3
    The retina display will be nice for everything except gaming. What I mean is that I seriously doubt you'll play any games that will run smoothly at the highest resolution with any decent settings.
     
  4. roadbloc macrumors G3

    roadbloc

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    #4
    I recommend you take advantage of Steam. And bootcamp if you're comfortable with it (Windows has a hell of a lot more games available for it than OS X). All the best of luck getting any game to run on a native resolution though if your choose the retina model.
     
  5. T'hain Esh Kelch macrumors 601

    T'hain Esh Kelch

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    Denmark
    #5
    The m295x in the Retina iMac is so far the best choice for gaming. But make sure to play at 'normal' resolutions, and not 5K resolution.

    Good article from Anandtech.
     
  6. MarkLynch thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Nov 10, 2014
    #6
    Thanks everyone for the responses #
    I'd like to be abile to play at standard 27" iMac resolution smoothly with decent settings... without frying my Mac #
    I mainly play Blizzard and Telltale games so they run natively on OS X.
    I hope that a standard iMac isn't a better choice...
     
  7. antonis macrumors 68000

    antonis

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    Jun 10, 2011
    #7
    I was able to play WoW on native 27" resolution (2560 x 1440) with an iMac 27" 2010 model (most settings on medium), so the current iMac should be more than enough.

    Of course, after patch 6.x.x things have moved on the slower side, but still it should be more than sufficient.
     
  8. leenak macrumors 68020

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    Mar 10, 2011
    #8
    Except people have reported that games are playing smoothly at the highest resolution, even myself.

    ----------

    I ran some tests yesterday and not sure about Windows because I haven't installed it yet, but it seems like the fans kick in when the GPU diode gets near 100C. The AMD 290/295 is apparently rated for 105C according to various comments which may be why the fans are slow to kick in. Again, the concern people seem to have is if you are constantly playing games (like many hardcore gamers do....) then you are having high temps for hours on end daily but still that is what the system is rated for and the fans kick in when they need to.
     
  9. VI™ macrumors 6502a

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    #9
    What's som and how old?

    I'm guessing that none of them are graphically intensive and it's at the 5k resolution? Some games won't even switch to that large of a resolution with the iMac is what's been reported.
     
  10. leenak macrumors 68020

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    #10
  11. Irishman macrumors 68030

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    Nov 2, 2006
    #11
    The 5K iMac will give you horsepower to burn for gaming at resolutions lower than 5K.

    I like to look at it this way: Remember the first Retina iPad? The one that still had the 30-pin connector? It was slow as hell because the GPUs of the time hadn't caught up to the display, and couldn't optimize performance. That's when the term "retina tax" was born. The retina iMac is a new display technology. The first generation won't be the best of breed, it will just be the start of a longer line of optimizations, and Apple's really good about deploying those optimizations when they're available. (They did it with the iPad 4 in like 7-8 months after the first retina iPad).

    My advice would be to go see the display in a retail environment or at a friend's house . See if you fall in love with that screen quality. If so, then you've made your choice. If not, maybe get the next step down from the 27" retina iMac and max it out with Fusion Drive and GPU.
     
  12. antonis macrumors 68000

    antonis

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    Jun 10, 2011
    #12
    Having a 5k iMac doesn't necessarily mean that you must use this resolution everywhere. You can always have the best of both worlds, as using the 5k resolution for desktop usage (which I'm sure the 290/295 gpus will handle easily), while reducing the resolution in half for gaming.
     
  13. shaunp macrumors 65816

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    Nov 5, 2010
    #13
    If your gaming requirements aren't that high, then get an iMac and in that case you might as well for for the retina one. If you think in future you will be playing some games with higher requirements then go PC you then have a choice of putting Linux on it too now Steam are encouraging developers to develop for Linux. It also depends on what other apps you use.

    For general ever day stuff I use a Mac, but if I were playing a lot of games (if I had the time) I'd use a PC as there is more flexibility over the graphics hardware.
     
  14. Solomani macrumors 68030

    Solomani

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    #14
    OP:

    I won't get into the debate of whether you should buy an iMac versus PC, because the answer will always be "What's more important to you? And what will you be using it for?"

    BUT…. if you end up buying an iMac, my one big advice would be: Get the iMac built-to-order model with the option for the LATEST BEST DAMN POSSIBLE GRAPHICS CARD THAT APPLE ALLOWS DAMMIT!!! :p
     
  15. VI™ macrumors 6502a

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    #15
    Did you read either of those links? The first one stated they weren’t running at max resolution and the Ars Technica review stated that when they turned it up to 4k, performance degraded. That’s still not running at the max resolution. So neither of those people have reported playing smoothly at the highest screen resolution. What games have you been playing to report? Something like Warcraft II might, but most any modern game with any kind of pull on a GPU will not. In fact, on my rMBP, one of the only games I’ve found to play at the maximum resolution smoothly is Torch Light 2. Skyrim, Rift, Arche Age, and many, many others will not.
     
  16. Frozone9 macrumors member

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    Oct 21, 2014
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    Zürich, Switzerland
    #16
    You can play fine on 2560x1440 as its exactly 1/4 of original Screen Pixels.

    So you can play on 2560x1440 and enjoy the higher resolution for everything else.
     
  17. leenak macrumors 68020

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    Mar 10, 2011
    #17
    Yeah, I didn't mean to say 5k resolution because games would need to support it for one. I find full screen game playing a bit daunting though so I use a scaled resolution without issue (right now mostly playing GW2).
     
  18. VI™ macrumors 6502a

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    #18
    From the iMac thread. IIRC, this poster works for Feral. Notice he says it takes 3 graphics cards to get most games running smoothly at maximum resolution.

     
  19. MarkLynch thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Nov 10, 2014
    #19
    Thanks everyone - I've decided to give the riMac a try anyway (with AppleCare obviously). The screen is just too awesome and I really want to switch to OS X to take full advantage of Handoff with my devices.

    I hope that maybe next year a new riMac with a Skylake CPU plus a Bermuda GPU will come out...

    According to your experience, how does a year old Mac sell to an Apple Store? 60% of its original price? And on the web?
     

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