Gamers, how do you justify buying a Mac?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Kjos, Feb 1, 2015.

  1. Kjos macrumors member

    Dec 4, 2013
    I've spent the big bucks late 2013 on a 27 inch Haswell iMac all decked out. But going into it I knew that I would run into gaming issues.

    After much much thought b4 buying my iMac I told myself I'd never bootcamp, or Virtualbox my iMac to get windows because that's when I'll get a virus and I wouldn't let myself live it down.

    There are GREAT gaming companies out there who always make Mac versions of their games:


    Other then that their isn't many BIG (AAA) game makers that do that, still seems weird to me that it hasn't caught on, but I get it.

    So of course my friends make fun of me for buying a Mac because I'm a gamer, which sucks and I want a good reply. Usually I say something about security, reliability, or something about how AppleCare has my back. But they still get to play awesome games and I don't.

    Anyone out there with a lot of "wit" that has some good facts/comebacks I can use for why a gamer would buy a Mac?
  2. Ledgem macrumors 68000


    Jan 18, 2008
    Hawaii, USA
    I used to consider myself a gamer, but the amount of time I have to spend on games went down. Around that same time was when I switched over to Macs. I haven't regretted it - it made me realize many nuisances I was putting up with on Windows. I can still game on the system, and I still hope for more native Mac support from game developers, but it's not anywhere near the primary purpose of this machine. I get the impression that's the case for most Mac users.

    It's no longer the case that Macs are overpriced for the hardware you get, but the lack of hardware customization options and user-upgradeability makes them pretty poor choices for pure gaming machines. Hardware upgrade cycles might have cooled down, but it makes more sense to be able to swap out your processor and graphics chip as opposed to having to swap out your entire computer.

    Sorry that your friends are making fun of you for your choice of computer, but they probably have a point. A Mac wasn't the worst possible choice for a gaming machine, but it's not what I would have considered a good choice, either. (And for what it's worth, if you're just gaming - as long as you're not pirating software - you're fine to use Windows 7 or higher through Bootcamp for gaming.)
  3. azure247 macrumors 6502

    Sep 9, 2008
    My room is not cluttered with cables all over the floor and it is portable and convenient when you need to move.

    I just cant go back to a desktop with 6-7 wires going all over the floor and cables plugged into the outlet. I just plug one cord into the outlet and BAM, done.

    Gaming? use bootcamp

    Also, the imac screen is beautiful and if u think of the cost of these displays alone, its pretty high so its not like u are ripped off getting an imac.
  4. yjchua95 macrumors 604

    Apr 23, 2011
    GVA, KUL, MEL (current), ZQN
    Simple, it's for the great hardware and design, plus quiet operation.

    You won't get any viruses by having Boot Camp, because Windows cannot write into the OS X side. It can read OS X drives, but not write. So you're safe.

    And just buy a good antivirus software and you're good to go. Don't pirate games, buy them.
  5. Natzoo macrumors 65816


    Sep 16, 2014
    Not sure where i am
    If i was a gamer i wouldn't buy a mac because a mac has GT 780M while a lenovo mobile notebook has a GTX 860 M with 4gb, So if i was a gamer i wouldn't get a mac unless i wasn't doing major stuff. Like i play x -plane, multiplayer games on my mac and get 45 to 55 fps and thats on my 15" retina with gt 750m
  6. TechZeke macrumors 68020


    Jul 29, 2012
    Rialto, CA
    Simple. I like Mac.

    Any windows laptop that is as thin, light, and powerful as my 15" rMBP will cost just as much. Therefore, for the price, I have nothing to lose by going Mac. I can run even run windows when I need to. I can't do vice versa on a windows Machine. Same with all-in-ones. The iMac is the most powerful All-in-One in existence.

    If I'm a gamer that heavily prefers OS X, and I want an All in One and a thin light laptop, why wouldn't I get a Mac if the Macs play all the games I want?
  7. yjchua95 macrumors 604

    Apr 23, 2011
    GVA, KUL, MEL (current), ZQN
    Nope, the iMac has a 4GB GTX 780M GDDR5 card.

    Benchmarks here have shown the 780M to be fairly stronger than the 860M (both GDDR5).
  8. UniDoubleU macrumors regular


    Aug 14, 2014
    Well, I have the problem in reverse. How do I justify getting a gaming PC. The biggest issue is that I'll need plenty of extra space to put it. It'll cost next to nothing in a couple of years. Oh wait, I'll need to buy another monitor also!

    To get the best gaming experience on Macs, it's hard to avoid Bootcamp. That way you gain the full power of your hardware. Microsoft DirectX; which most PC games are designed to support won't ever come to OSX. With Bootcamp, there's not much to complain really. You can game at 1440p on top spec iMacs since 2012. That's already way ahead of most gamers, who mostly likely will be on 1080p. Have a look at Steam Hardware Survey.

    To make the iMac boot into Windows faster and reduce the hassle I've gotten an external SSD, of course an internal SSD would work better but I quite like my FD setup.
  9. andy9l macrumors 68000

    Aug 31, 2009
    England, UK
    Macs are not gaming machines and you knew that, so why did you buy one if you wanted a gaming machine?

    This can't happen. You can use Windows on a Mac without any care or thought so long as you're only using it for gaming and don't mind completely wiping it at a moment's notice. Windows 8.1 with the default Windows Defender is absolutely fine for playing games and light browsing of safe sites, for someone with half a brain.

    If you get a virus on the Windows partition, just wipe it through OS X disk utility and recreate it with BootCamp assistant. Simple as that. Takes 5 minutes to do and another 30 mins to re-install Windows. Your OS X install remains untouched.

    No gamer should buy an iMac to use as their primary gaming machine. However, since the hardware in an iMac is mid-range, it will handle a number of games on Windows with reasonable performance. That's it.

    They're "prosumer" machines.
  10. Icaras macrumors 603


    Mar 18, 2008
    California, United States
    I bought an iMac as my primary gaming machine and I consider myself a gamer (200+ games on Steam, 50+ on Mac App Store).

    Say again?
  11. andy9l macrumors 68000

    Aug 31, 2009
    England, UK

    You're missing the point.

    If you bought a proper gaming rig, performance would be vastly improved. Vastly. Serious gamers will not be using laptop hardware. Come on, now.
  12. Icaras macrumors 603


    Mar 18, 2008
    California, United States
    Agreed on performance increase. But still doesn't make me feel anything less than a "serious gamer" just for using an iMac running on laptop hardware (GPU).
  13. T'hain Esh Kelch macrumors 603

    T'hain Esh Kelch

    Aug 5, 2001
    I game a lot, except for the most recent AAA games, and for that my 2011 iMac is still going strong. I usually upgrade when I have gone through my back log of games.. And due to Humble Bundle and Steam, that is enourmeous by now.. I'll get a 2020 iMac next time I guess...
  14. Kjos thread starter macrumors member

    Dec 4, 2013
    I had no idea that my Mac wouldn't be affected if I get a virus while running Windows through bootcamp.

    That changes a lot.

    This is why I come to Macrumors, people know their stuff.

    Thanks everyone
  15. Psychopulse macrumors regular


    Dec 26, 2005
    London, UK
    There is a lot of games for Mac on Steam, and if you'll get a decent machine with a good graphic card it will be great for gaming. My list of most played ones at the moment would be: Batman Arkham Asylum, Batman Arkham City, Borderlands 2, Borderlands The Pre-Sequel, Left 4 Dead, Left 4 Dead 2, Diablo 3

    I also recommend using a PS3 controller connected to your mac, makes the gaming experience even better :)
  16. Astelith macrumors regular

    Oct 10, 2014
    If you love Macs for any reason and you are not too picky about performance/settings Macs can be great machines all around.
    I play WoW since the beta, so more than 10 years, and the new retina iMac is the best machine I ever tried to run it, everything on ultra except Shadows and Water, all this at 5K resolution, nothing out there can deliver the same quality, maybe more performance but not this quality, and with this settings I have 40/60 fps.
    Also all the other Mac versions of the new titles can run great, the only downside I see is the price, If you are only a gamer, in most cases with the same money you can buy a heavy loaded Alienware, but if you need Os X for photo/video/other reason... like me, Windows it's not an option
  17. shaunp macrumors 68000

    Nov 5, 2010
    I have a Mac Pro (6-core, D700's) and I've boot-camped it. I also have a PC (core i7, GTX 780). I prefer Mac as my every day computing platform.

    For gaming however the PC is a much better platform. A single GTX 780 is close to the performance of the two D700's when they are running in Crossfire and if those games support Crossfire. The PC get's similar performance with a much simpler configuration. The PC cost around £1,500 the Mac cost £4000. I could add another GTX 780 into my PC, and configure them in SLI, for around £300 and it would be much quicker than the Mac, or I could add any of the high-end GPU's as the GTX 780 is a couple of years old now - the PC has a 1300W PSU and plenty of PCI-e slots. I have lots of choices and the CPU is not a bottleneck in anyway.

    Then there's the small issue of most games are made for consoles and Windows, with tiny handful making it to the Mac.

    Sadly if you are a gamer rather than someone who plays the odd game, the Mac is not the right platform. I have the fastest currently available GPU's from Apple (D700) and the solution is easily beaten by a cheap PC. The iMac with it's mobile GPU wouldn't stand a chance. Sorry, as much as I like the Mac it's not a powerful gaming platform, but it is a very good every day computing platform.
  18. Alesc macrumors 6502


    Nov 11, 2014
    I love playing on my late 2013 iMac. It's a powerfull and very silent machine.
    In the beginning I tested gaming on OS X, but less choice, more bugs and more expensive games than on Windows. So I've installed Windows 8.1 on an external USB3 drive, it works perfectly! I have just to reboot and I'm enjoying Portal 2, Max Payne 3, Alien Isolation...
  19. ToroidalZeus macrumors 68020


    Dec 8, 2009

    got me a nice i7-5820k with a gtx 980 and play every game maxed out at 1440p.
  20. siddhartha macrumors regular


    Aug 8, 2008
    Northern Virgina
    It totally depends on what you're looking for with gaming.

    I consider myself a gamer, and my computer is a riMac. I mostly play games through Bootcamp partition. I use Steam.

    Mostly I play games that aren't cutting edge, and they do just fine. Right now I'm playing Dark Souls, and there are no performance issues. Plays much better than it did on my PS3.

    If you are looking for bleeding edge performance, there are better alternatives, but you don't need the latest/greatest hardware to be a gamer. Again, depends on what games you want to play.

    If there's something out there that I can't play on the riMac, most likely I'll get it for PS4
  21. quackers82 macrumors 6502

    Mar 13, 2014
    All the games i play are available for Mac or run well under Parallels/Wineskin. Plus I'm not the type to get anal over FPS, so long as its smooth enough I'm happy.

    So i see the time i put in to get a game to work on wineskin is a lot less than the daily grief Windows would give me.

    If some start giving you stick over FPS or say the Mac graphics cards aint as powerful , i would really question if they are enjoying the game that much if they can give that much attention to 20 fps difference.
  22. matreya macrumors 65816


    Nov 14, 2009
    I use my Retina iMac as a computer for other tasks. I game on an Xbox One, before that I had an Xbox 360.
  23. cynics macrumors G4

    Jan 8, 2012
    How do you justify buying a Mac dedicated toward gaming? Depending on the games that's a tough one.

    Since performance generally leads the list of criteria for gaming it's tough to justify an iMac..

    Another thing is upgradability. New game out performs sub par on high settings? Dropping in a new video card is always an option on a PC.

    Any cost comparison is apples to oranges with an iMac vs PC desktop because of the upgradability aspect. A new video card is less expensive then a new iMac.

    Just tell your friends you prefer a Mac. I've yet to meet a Mac hater that isn't mildly fascinated by beautiful iMac sitting pretty.

    My father thinks Macs are silly but when we are talking shop and he's going on about issues he's having (hardware compatibility, viruses, back up issues, etc) my first response is always "man I'm glad I don't need to deal with that anymore.
  24. Kjos thread starter macrumors member

    Dec 4, 2013
    Yeah I've never had an issue with anything except compatibility.

    Of all the things you can do with a computer, if I only have a single issue then I shouldn't complain too much.

    Sims 4 is coming out for Mac sometime this month! But I am VERY sad that GTA V will not being coming to the Mac on release (if ever). But that's the trade off.
  25. espnfanco macrumors newbie

    Dec 9, 2014
    I play wow on my 2013 iMac with upgraded cpu, ram, and video card. I have windows 8.1 installed on an external TB SSD Lacie rugged hd. On ultra settings I'm getting 60-80 fps (sometimes it reaches 100fps) and it looks great! I won't be getting a 5k iMac this year but plan on in a year or two. Anyone can tell a difference in picture for gaming on the 5k vs regular screen?

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