Help buying a new imac

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by Angelus, Jul 5, 2005.

  1. Angelus macrumors 6502

    Apr 19, 2002
    New Zealand
    Hey hows it going? I was hoping that you good people could give me some help buying my new mac.
    This year i've got a very well paying summer job so i've decided to treat myself to a new mac and a canon 350d cos right now i'm using a 667 tibook DVI with 512MB RAM and 30GB HD but it's starting to feel slow.

    I want to have cash left over when i go to college so i've decided to get a g5 imac( a friend of mine in apple can get me a 20-30% discount). I was undecided bout the 17" or 20" but i figure the 20" will complement my new camera nicely.

    This is the last mac i'll buy until the mactels have solved all their teething problems so i want it to be nice and fast for a few years. The G5 coupled with the 7200rpm HD will leave easily beat my g4 so i guess my main concern is RAM.
    My uses will be office, email,surfing, light gaming, some photo editing and casual use of Corel Painter. Personally i'm aiming for at least 1GB but as i've never used tiger(along with core image, widgets, spotlight etc) i don't know if this is enough. Now i know the old saying that you can never have enough RAM but for my uses should i get 1.5GB/2GB or is that just overkill? How much of a speed increase will >1GB RAM bring about in overall system performance cos if its tangible i'll buy it?
  2. zap2 macrumors 604


    Mar 8, 2005
    Washington D.C
    i use tiger with 1gb its still fast but i hope to upgrade when i buy a few more thing buy at least 2gb if u want it to last until intel macs are on 2nd rev
  3. lopresmb macrumors 6502

    Apr 29, 2005
    Go with the 20in if at all possible. The extra screen real estate is niiiiiice (and it also has a better resolution), its a beautiful computer.

    In terms of RAM I'd just get the iMac with the standard 512, then stick another gig stick in for a total of 1.5GB. That ought to do you nicely. (i'm running tiger on a iBook G4 with 640 RAM and I watch beachballs now and again).
  4. wwooden macrumors 68000


    Jul 26, 2004
    Burlington, VT
    I just bought a stock 17" Superdrive iMac 2 weeks ago. I added another Gig of RAM and i was shocked at the speed increase of the entire system! The first time it started up with the extra ram I thought something was wrong because it only took about 3 seconds, but everything flys now. Most apps open up in one bounce and and iPhoto and such load in no time. I now have 1.5Gigs of Ram and that should suite me and most people quite well for a several years. Definitely the best upgrade I have done in a long time.
  5. wdlove macrumors P6


    Oct 20, 2002
    You are very lucky, wish I had a friend that could get me a 20 - 30% discount. Would certainly go with the 20" iMac. I would prefer to have Apple install the RAM so, I'd go with 1.5 of RAM. Also don't forget to purchase AppleCare.
  6. milozauckerman macrumors 6502

    Jun 25, 2005
    I'd go for the 20", order two aftermarket 1GB sticks (~$210 shipped through OWC) and put the stock 512 on Ebay ($40? give or take, maybe more as the Samsung OEM stuff sells for a bit online). That way you get a matched pair and 2GB for a good price.
  7. ebow macrumors 6502a


    Apr 30, 2001
    Trapped in a world before later on
    I thought I'd read that pair matching was not something to worry about in the iMacs, only in the PowerMacs. Does it just provide a small extra boost? Does it come down to tradition / superstition?
  8. milozauckerman macrumors 6502

    Jun 25, 2005
    So far as I know, Apple recommends matched pairs for all G5s.
  9. Josh396 macrumors 65816


    Oct 16, 2004
    Peoria/Chicago, IL
    While matching pairs are best, the real world gain is very minimal, especially for the casual user.
  10. budugu macrumors 6502

    Sep 8, 2004
    Boston, MA
    Given that 1GB ram =< 100$ a stick at newegg you might as well get 2 GB ...if you can afford ... but more than 1 GB is an over kill ... for an imac ... you will be chocking up with lot of stuff before you cross 1 GB ... unless you have 8 or more applications all running at the same time ...

    All you need is a PC3200 stick ... i would suggest Newegg (first pref) /pricewatch than OWC ... why after market old stuff if you can put in new ram for much less money!

    As far as matchin pairs is concerned ...i donot think DDR has any of those issues ... but i am not sure ... I know for sure that DDR2's performace gets killed significantly if they are not ... It does not hurt to put matching pairs!!
  11. Angelus thread starter macrumors 6502

    Apr 19, 2002
    New Zealand
    Thanks for all of the replies. Judging by what you've all said i think i'll get it with 1.5GB RAM. I don't want to do it myself but even including a discount i couldn't justify apples price for 2GB. Thanks again for all your help. I'm kinda hoping that i can buy this comp now and not have to worry bout it's performance for a few years.

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