Help me choose a MAC/PC

Discussion in 'iMac' started by h4rdik, Jun 25, 2012.

  1. h4rdik macrumors newbie

    Jun 25, 2012
    Hi! I'm looking forward to buying a new mac. I'm almost convinced with the 27-in iMac (mid-2011). However, with no announcements regarding iMAC in WWDC 2012, I was a bit disappointed like others. I'm no retina-fan but I was hoping for a 3rd Gen Intel Core upgrade.

    I wish to buy a complete-solution workstation capable of running both OS X Lion as well as Windows 7 Pro 64. My major work involves Windows use for .NET Development. I will be using the Mac mainly for iOS Development but my sister needs it for Final Cut Pro X, Motion, SoundCut Pro, Autodesk Maya 2013 and 3DS-MAX.
    So the processor and graphics requirements are very high especially for windows as Maya and Max will be heavily used.

    The iMac 27-in(higher model) has a pretty good configuration but in that rate I could easily buy a Dell Precision Workstation with Intel Xeon. And the Mac Pro is out of question as I've a pretty tight budget.

    I'm looking for a Quad-Core Processor 3rd gen i5/i7 processor or an Intel Xeon Processor with 8/16gb ram and 1gb VRAM. The higher configuration is required mostly for windows but whatever Mac I choose, it is a must that it be able to run Final Cut Pro,Motion and XCode without a problem.

    I was thinking of buying a Mac mini as well as a Dell Precision Workstation with Dell Ultrasharp monitor(23-in). And use the Ultrasharp as a common monitor for both Mac Mini as well as Precision. But I'm not sure if the mini will be able to handle FCP and Motion as it barely meets the system requirements.

    My friend advised me to buy the 27-in(lower model) iMac and use it as a monitor for Dell Precision as well. But again, the rate is going pretty high. I'm also not sure if it can be used as a monitor at all.

    Really confused here. Please advice!
  2. aarond12 macrumors 65816


    May 20, 2002
    Dallas, TX USA
    With the Mac, you have the best of both worlds. You can run your Mac software (for iOS development, etc.) and your Windows software either by rebooting into Windows mode ("Bootcamp") or using virtualization software like Parallels, VMWare, or the free VirtualBox.

    In my opinion, it's best to get a high-powered Mac and use Parallels for Windows stuff. It will run everything but the most advanced games all on one machine. If you're doing Maya and 3DMax, Parallels will do it quite nicely, including graphics acceleration. If that's STILL not fast enough for you, reboot into Windows mode and the full power of the computer is available.

    Either way, ONE computer should be more than enough for you. If that's the iMac, a top-of-the-line iMac with the Core i7 3.4GHz quad-core processor, 2GB of video RAM, 4GB of regular RAM (upgrade that yourself -- it's cheaper!), and a 1TB hard drive is $2299. Add $150 for 2TB drive. That is a BEAST of a computer.
  3. leman macrumors G3

    Oct 14, 2008
    I suggest you wait until the Mountain Lion is released. If there is still no iMac until then, you could also look into building an Ivy Bridge Hackintosh - by then there will be surely lots of easy-to-follow guides.
  4. radug macrumors member

    Aug 12, 2010
    no VMs

    whatever you do, do NOT count on running 3dsMax/Maya in a virtual machine! (unless the most complicated scene you would do is 3 teapots on a table, which i doubt)

    it runs, yes, but the performance is dreadful: it can't even keep up with keyboard shortcuts properly, let alone multi-million polygon scenes.

    As a recommendation, take a look at the refurbished Mac Pros, they have some really good deals.
  5. robgendreau macrumors 68040

    Jul 13, 2008
    Yeah, I'd look hard at the PC hardware for Maya and 3DS-Max; the latter says supported Macs in bootcamp are the MBP and Mac Pro models; they don't even list the iMacs (graphics related? I dunno).

    Check with the users groups for that software; it usually requires the most horsepower you can get.

  6. HurtinMinorKey, Jun 25, 2012
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2012

    HurtinMinorKey macrumors 6502

    Jan 18, 2012
    I'm in the same boat, i've decided to go with a dell xps8500, with an upgraded GPU, plus an ultra sharp monitor.

    It's less than the highest priced imac, it will perform better in all areas, and the monitor is better.

    I lose OSX, but I'm only running Photoshop/Premiere on it, and there doesn't seem to be any stability issues with those programs on Win 7.

    I also lose the all-in-one form factor, which i hate to give up, but it's not worth everything else. However I reserve the right to kick myself if a new iMac with beast specs comes out in the next 6 months, but I doubt it will.
  7. odnarbssagib macrumors member

    Jun 11, 2012

    Get a pimped out Dell XPS One 27. I wouldn't get started with Macs now seeing as how they don't update their products in a timely manner. If you want mobile computing Mac is an option but not for you.
  8. h4rdik thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 25, 2012

    Hi Aarond! That's what I had been thinking i.e. to get a fully-upgraded iMac with i7, amd-2GB, 2TB HDD, 16GB RAM etc. But I will be buying it from Mumbai, India and Apple doesn't have an Online Store here yet. The retail-stores here don't offer any upgrades other than RAM. And they are bloddy expensive-around $530 for 16GB upgrade. However, I've heard that it is available in the market here for as less as $120. So, I'll be getting it from the market.
    But since there is no full-upgrade possible like the one in Apple Store US, I'm a bit reluctant to buy the basic configuration. What do you think?


    Thanks! But do you think that Apple will reveal the new iMac during the Mountain Lion launch? According to most of the rumors that I've read, Apple will definitely release the new version of iMac before Mac Pro that is reportedly releasing in Jan.'13. But none said that it might release in July.


    Thanks! But as far as I've read, the iMac 27-in model that I'm talking about is totally tested with Maya 2013, done by Autodesk itself and it works fine with i7,8GB ram. The test results reported just one problem and that was with the graphic card not being able to display information correctly in ViewPort 2.0 which is a common problem with Mac Pro as well. The same problem is reported by Mac Pro graphics as well.
    I guess it's something related to the drivers that Apple isn't paying attention to.
  9. leman macrumors G3

    Oct 14, 2008
    I think it is likely that we will see the new iMac soon. But of course, I only guess - just as everyone else. Unless Apple makes an official statement (which they didn't) or someone can provide a spec sheet leak (which has not happened), everything journalists and analysts write are just speculations.

    I can also explain why I think that a new iMac is likely to appear soon. First, all hardware components required to build a 2012 iMac are available now. In the past, Apple would release a new model few month after the new CPUs are available (this would be July in our case). We have seen some leaked benchmarks of the new iMac, which are unlikely to be fake (the leaked benchmarks of the new MBP were true after all). Also, some retailers seem to have problems with their iMac stock. Besides, to pair a release of a new OS with new Mac models is a smart business move.

    Anyway, I am going to wait until ML is released, and if there is no iMac by then, I will probably get a retina MBP.

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