high end 21.5" '11 vs low 27" '11

Discussion in 'iMac' started by JamDonut, May 23, 2011.

  1. JamDonut macrumors member

    May 23, 2011
    England, UK
    Hi All,

    been browsing these forums for quite some time and finally have a dilemma i can't resolve!

    I recently decided to go with the iMac and iPad2 over getting a new MBP but im not too sure which iMac to get

    i'm at university so with my discount i can get both a 21.5" imac with i7 upgrade for £1300 or the lower-end 27 for £10 more! i know for some it's a no-brainer to get a bigger screen and i have read several threads similar but hoping you won't lose patience with me for asking still!

    the things that i need to weigh up are obvious screen size, i play a fair bit of gaming via bootcamp i.e. RTS like AoE3, Starcraft and blizzard games, do tons of video converting and obviously the basics including lots of essays!

    Is the 27 going to be worth getting a bigger screen for gaming, will they look better on the 21.5 as they have the same GPU, will they be 'stretched' or something on the 27? obviously id like a bigger screen but if performance is better and games will look better i'd rather sacrifice 5 inches? and will the i7 21.5 overheat easier because its, well, an i7?

    sorry if this is long-winded and i hope my reasons for being unsure are clear!

  2. alust2013 macrumors 601


    Feb 6, 2010
    On the fence
    The 21 will game better, as it has a lower native resolution, which is less taxing. It also runs a cooler CPU, so it doesn't risk overheating either.
  3. Entourage12 macrumors member

    Feb 21, 2008
    No Blizzard game is overly taxing it just comes down to what you plan to do with the machine.

    $10 more for a bigger screen is a no brainer unless you're worried about it being too big, worst case scenario you can run the games at 1920x1080 but I can assure you that it wont be necessary unless you demand full ultra 60+ fps.


    Here's WoW on the base 27 and you can see other games being played also, thats native resolution also, SC2 will require you to turn down the graphics a bit more than WoW (maybe).

    If you can wait until tomorrow I will be picking up the base 27 and checking these two games to see how they run and can post here.
  4. JamDonut thread starter macrumors member

    May 23, 2011
    England, UK
    Perfect reply thank you very much. not worried about the screen being too big at all, just the processor and other worries mentioned above about graphics, which kinda suck on my C2D MB!

    if you could let me know how they play that would be great thank you :D
  5. iSayuSay macrumors 68040


    Feb 6, 2011
    Well .. about cooling system, base 27¨ should have the best cooling system around all iMac .. it has 65watt TDP processor, put inside 27¨ chassis which could handle highest end iMac just fine. :D

    Yea gaming could be tough though, you may feel teased to always use 2560x1440 resolution because you can ... not in 21¨.. you´ll be just grateful to have it on 1080 :p
  6. JamDonut thread starter macrumors member

    May 23, 2011
    England, UK
    i'll say!

    great to hear about cooling as i read a lot on here about worries with heat but no one seems to apply it to gaming which adds to heat loads (obviously), but no one seems to mention that, so knowing the 27 inch will handle heat well is great :)

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