Gaming performance on a new 24" iMac?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by ndriver182, Aug 23, 2007.

  1. ndriver182 macrumors 6502a

    Jun 26, 2007
    I've got a new 24" iMac with 1gb of RAM and have installed Bootcamp v1.4. I've been installing a lot of my PC games ranging from FEAR/Age of Empires 3 on the new end to Half-Life 2 and Knights of the Old Republic on the older end.

    As I said I've got one 1gb of RAM, however tomorrow my new RAM will arrive and I'll be running 4gb since I do a lot of multitasking while in OSX (running parallels and other OSX apps at once... no gaming). So, is there any chance of the increased RAM helping out at all with Bootcamp gaming performance? I do realize the iMac is not a substitute for a dedicated Windows machine and gaming isn't why I bought it. But why not try to maximize what it can do, right?

    On a somewhat related note, I'm not used to playing PC games on a widescreen monitor so I was wondering what a decent resolution to be running games at is. I know the monitor is 1900x1200 native, but that just murders games. I've been setting games at 1280x768. Does anybody suggest something else? Are there any settings I should avoid like AA and/or AF?
  2. HLdan macrumors 603


    Aug 22, 2007
    Could you give us some results of frame rates or how your games are playing at high settings? Also let us know how high of settings will it play smoothly and at what resolutions. This seems to be the only thing that never gets discussed. Many are complaining about the mobility Radeon HD 2600 XT but owners of the new iMac will not mention a thing about how their games are playing. Help us out.
  3. ndriver182 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jun 26, 2007
    I'll try to get some frame rates tomorrow. Unfortunately I've shut down the iMac tonight. I can say for sure that with Age of Empires 3 running at 1280x768 with low anti-aliasing and almost all other settings on high except for shaders and shadows the framerate jumps anywhere from low 40's-60 with an average in the mid 40's. I can tell you that I could tell without FRAPS running that a game like FEAR on medium settings at 1280x768 is playable, but gets a little slow and a little choppy sometimes. Call of Duty 2 was somewhat similar, which was really surprising to me. Like I said I'll try to get some more numbers tomorrow.
  4. dammitjanet@gma macrumors member

    Aug 23, 2007
    I was playing Oblivion (not Shivering Isles) and had it running in fullscreen with HDR (no AA) and it was fine.

    I was getting some sounds artifacts (buzzing) whilst playing the game though which were not apparant elsewhere.
  5. imacdaddy macrumors 6502a

    Feb 2, 2006
    I'm sure once new drivers are released, these games will run fine.
  6. marcg007 macrumors member

    Jan 28, 2003
    Boston area
    Playable games...

    Got my 2.8 iMac just a few short days ago and have only had time to play Quake 4 so far. Not sure how to view framerates, etc but will give what information I have. Running version 1.4.2, video is set to High Quality, screen size is only 1024x768 at standard aspect ratio and full screen is on. High quality special effects are on, shadows enabled, specular enabled, bump maps enabled, detailed sky is on. I just noticed that multi cpu/core is of but will turn it on next time I play. Not even sure what vertical sync and antialiasing are but they will also be active the next time I start up the game. In any event, it looks just fantastic and plays really well also. Of course you have to keep in mind that my previous desktop was a Quicksilver 933 with a 64MB video card. I'll update as I install and play other games. Hope this is somewhat helpful.
  7. nando2323 macrumors 6502a

    Aug 15, 2007
    I got a new 24" imac 2.4 with 2GB ram, and I play WoW on it with everything turned up except the AA and Anio filtering I think its at 24bit 1x 1x and res at 1900x1200 full screen and it runs like a champ. Shatrath is fine 30fps+ Shadow labs 30fps+ I think its great for games at least WoW that is. I think the people that are really picky and say well my PC does 100 fps thats just retarded because if you can notice the difference between 25 fps and 100 fps you my friend are a very special human being. But I do understand the logic behind if it does 100 fps now its got better longevity. Well that is true but you should not be buying a Mac as a gaming machine IMO but I trully think that it can handle anything that is out now rather well.
  8. overcast macrumors 6502a

    Jun 27, 2007
    Rochester, NY
    If you can't notice the difference between 25 and 100fps then YOU are a very special human being. Magical drivers aren't going to make that ATI card in the new iMacs all of a sudden double their framerate. It's widely benchmarked to be an EXTREMELY poor performer. If you're happy running a game with no filtering, low textures, no shadows, more power to you. But I spend money on games to play them they way they were meant to be seen.
    Also to the OP, not running games at the native resolution of the LCD panel is going to give you ugly scaling.
  9. ndriver182 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jun 26, 2007
    I understand that running resolutions that aren't native will give you different results, but according to my calculations running a game at 1280x768 is about as close as you're going to get to 1900x1200 in a wide-aspect resolution without looking like complete garbage. I mean, it's just like running 1024x768 on a 19" 4:3 LCD that's native resolution is 1280x1024. I don't see strange scaling in those situations, just not as crisp and clear of an image.

    Now if you're referring to running something like running 1024x768 on the 1920x1200 monitor, yeah of course it's going to look bad. It's sretching the image out AND at a low resolution.

    It's true, it's a little bit of a step down performance-wise when gaming on the iMac compared to my gaming PC I just tore down, but I rarely played games on it anyway anymore since I just use consoles for the most part. I just want to have the option to play my games should I actually feel like it. So I'm not looking for the best performance... just trying to maximize to the best of the hardware's ability.
  10. AlexisV macrumors 68000


    Mar 12, 2007
    Manchester, UK
    I disagree.

    I'm playing FEAR under Windows XP with virtually everything on max at 1440 resolution quite happily.

    Remember most games lose about 10% of their frame rates under Vista and OS X again manages far fewer frames per second than XP.

    I also understand the new Catalyst drivers not available to Apple users are increasing FPS by 5 - 15%.

    The Radeon 2600 in the iMac is benchmarking similar to a GeForce 7600GT.

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