How can I compare the speed of an iMac to my current system?

MacPat333

macrumors regular
Original poster
Sep 16, 2012
140
0
Dubai
Hello folks,

I was actually wondering how I could compare my current system to different configurations of the current iMac (my doubts for an update are getting bigger from day to day)?

Current system:

Asus Eee PC Intel(R) Atom CPU N280 @ 1.66 GHz 1,99 GB RAM
Windows XP Home Edition Version 2002 Pack 3

Option 1:

21" iMac
2.8GHz Quad-Core Intel Core i7
16GB 1333MHz DDR3 SDRAM - 4x4GB
1TB Serial ATA Drive
AMD Radeon HD 6770M 512MB GDDR5


Option 2:

27" iMac
2.7GHz Quad-Core Intel Core i5
16GB 1333MHz DDR3 SDRAM - 4x4GB
1TB Serial ATA Drive
AMD Radeon HD 6770M 512MB GDDR5


Option 3:

27" iMac
3.1GHz Quad-Core Intel Core i5
16GB 1333MHz DDR3 SDRAM - 4x4GB
1TB Serial ATA Drive
AMD Radeon HD 6970M 1GB GDDR5


Option 4:

27" iMac
3.1GHz Quad-Core Intel Core i5
16GB 1333MHz DDR3 SDRAM - 4x4GB
1TB Serial ATA Drive
AMD Radeon HD 6970M 2GB GDDR5


Option 5:

27" iMac
3.4GHz Quad-Core Intel Core i7
16GB 1333MHz DDR3 SDRAM - 4x4GB
1TB Serial ATA Drive
AMD Radeon HD 6970M 1GB GDDR5


Option 6:

27" iMac
3.4GHz Quad-Core Intel Core i7
16GB 1333MHz DDR3 SDRAM - 4x4GB
1TB Serial ATA Drive
AMD Radeon HD 6970M 2GB GDDR5


Sorry for that much information and the question, but I am trying to find out which one would be the best to buy for my purposes.

In addition to websurfing and watching a lot of youtube videos in Full HD, I am doing some photoshop (should get much more with the new system) and I am planning to finaly start video editing (Full HD) with multiple videos at the same time to cut and edit them together with sound effects and pictures in between.


So, I am planning to use it to create more professional video content for my youtube channel.

Thanks a lot!

p.s. In the end it is obviously what is the best value for money for my purposes and which configuration will be the one that will get me through the next 3-5 years of technology development (future proof).

Important: All of the above would be equipped with a normal HDD not with a SDD drive as the SDD from Apple are too expensive. I would like to get a SDD, but US $ 500.00 to "upgrade" from 1TB to a 256 GB SDD is too much for me! If it would be HDD to SDD for US$ 500.00 from 1TB to 1TB, that would be ok, but this way not with me.

Thx
 
Last edited:

justperry

macrumors G4
Aug 10, 2007
10,710
6,278
I'm a rolling stone.
You answered your question pretty much yourself.

You say you want to do a lot of HD video editing and need it to be future proof, go for the best you can afford.
 

The-Pro

macrumors 65816
Dec 2, 2010
1,449
36
Germany
I agree with Electa.
Dont get the RAM upgrade from apple. RAM is super easy to exchange on the iMac and 16GB will cost like 60-90$. :)
 

harlex

macrumors member
Nov 23, 2011
63
0
best computer

buy the best you can afford, as already stated buy the ram from companies like Crucial.

I had the i7 3.4 iMac 27" and that was impressive I sold that and now waiting for the new iMac to appear.
 

53kyle

macrumors 65816
Mar 27, 2012
1,281
108
Sebastopol, CA
Wait until whenever the new ones come out

----------

I agree with Electa.
Dont get the RAM upgrade from apple. RAM is super easy to exchange on the iMac and 16GB will cost like 60-90$. :)
Judging by the price that apple charges for 16 GB, for less than half of the price, you could just get 2 of the link below on amazon and get 32 GB (yes it works in newer iMacs)

Corsair 16GB Dual Channel DDR3 SODIMM Memory Kit (CMSO16GX3M2A1333C9)

It is easy to replace, look at the link below

http://www.ifixit.com/Guide/Installing-iMac-Intel-27-Inch-EMC-2309-and-2374-RAM/1630/1
 

motrek

macrumors 68020
Sep 14, 2012
2,428
150
You answered your question pretty much yourself.

You say you want to do a lot of HD video editing and need it to be future proof, go for the best you can afford.
Truly horrific advice.

As discussed in this thread from over a year ago, even the cheapest base model iMac should be more than enough for your YouTube video editing needs, considering that people were editing HD feature films on iMacs from a couple generations ago:

https://forums.macrumors.com/threads/1107229/

If you want more RAM, definitely go to NewEgg and buy some compatible RAM. You can get it for a small fraction of the cost of what Apple charges.

Addendum: if you want an SSD, you can also save a bunch of money by buying one of LaCie's "Rugged" external Thunderbolt SSDs instead of opting for Apple's $500 factory upgrade. If you are adventurous you can save more money by installing a 3rd party SSD in your iMac yourself.
 

justperry

macrumors G4
Aug 10, 2007
10,710
6,278
I'm a rolling stone.
Truly horrific advice.

As discussed in this thread from over a year ago, even the cheapest base model iMac should be more than enough for your YouTube video editing needs, considering that people were editing HD feature films on iMacs from a couple generations ago:

https://forums.macrumors.com/threads/1107229/

If you want more RAM, definitely go to NewEgg and buy some compatible RAM. You can get it for a small fraction of the cost of what Apple charges.

Addendum: if you want an SSD, you can also save a bunch of money by buying one of LaCie's "Rugged" external Thunderbolt SSDs instead of opting for Apple's $500 factory upgrade. If you are adventurous you can save more money by installing a 3rd party SSD in your iMac yourself.
What the ...., Try again.

You link to a thread I am not even in.:mad:

If I said that then show at least a valid link, and even if so, why go back and search in my history 1 year ago.

Please show Me!!!


And, he says it also has to be FUTURE proof.
 

motrek

macrumors 68020
Sep 14, 2012
2,428
150
What the ...., Try again.

You link to a thread I am not even in.:mad:

If I said that then show at least a valid link, and even if so, why go back and search in my history 1 year ago.

Please show Me!!!


And, he says it also has to be FUTURE proof.
My comment about horrific advice was obviously in response to the text that I quoted. I clearly didn't mean that your horrific advice was in a page that I quoted afterwards.

As for being future proof, what do you think that means? It means that your computer will work with stuff in the future. Like, you can plug in peripherals that come out in the future and run software that comes out in the future. In that sense (i.e., the correct sense), the cheapest current iMac is exactly as future proof as the highest-specced built-to-order model. They all have exactly the same ports and wireless interfaces and processor instruction sets.

Buying the processor upgrade to get you from, say, 2.7 GHz to 3.1 GHz will make your computer a very small percentage (14%) faster but it won't help you run future software any more than it helps you run current software.
 

T'hain Esh Kelch

macrumors 603
Aug 5, 2001
5,172
4,732
Denmark
Option 5. Most power, which is lovely to have for picture and movie editing. No need for an upgraded graphic card (Option 6).

Just buy the ram from a retailer instead of Apple, as that will save you quite a bit.
 

justperry

macrumors G4
Aug 10, 2007
10,710
6,278
I'm a rolling stone.
My comment about horrific advice was obviously in response to the text that I quoted. I clearly didn't mean that your horrific advice was in a page that I quoted afterwards.

As for being future proof, what do you think that means? It means that your computer will work with stuff in the future. Like, you can plug in peripherals that come out in the future and run software that comes out in the future. In that sense (i.e., the correct sense), the cheapest current iMac is exactly as future proof as the highest-specced built-to-order model. They all have exactly the same ports and wireless interfaces and processor instruction sets.

Buying the processor upgrade to get you from, say, 2.7 GHz to 3.1 GHz will make your computer a very small percentage (14%) faster but it won't help you run future software any more than it helps you run current software.
My Opinion still stands, and what I said is valid which was.


You answered your question pretty much yourself.

You say you want to do a lot of HD video editing and need it to be future proof, go for the best you can afford.
The OP also said:

get me through the next 3-5 years of technology development
Not only that, you think Apple will change many of it's(hardware) ports in the next few years, don't think so and especially not thunderbolt.

In the end, it's all just advise, He himself is the one who knows how much money he wants to spend on it, if he has the cash, go for the best.
 

motrek

macrumors 68020
Sep 14, 2012
2,428
150
... In the end, it's all just advise, He himself is the one who knows how much money he wants to spend on it, if he has the cash, go for the best.
With ideas like that, no wonder most people are in terrible debt. "Go ahead and buy the most expensive thing you can with whatever money you have, regardless of whether or not it actually suits your needs!"

For example, there's no way extra video card memory could possibly help with video editing but I suppose MacPat333 doesn't need to know that, he should just get "the best" stuff?

Personally I would feel horrible telling somebody to get a top-end built-to-order 27" iMac to do some light (YouTube) video editing, when they could just get the $1200 model and be perfectly satisfied. That's almost a $2000 difference they could use to help pay off their mortgage or send their kid to college.
 

justperry

macrumors G4
Aug 10, 2007
10,710
6,278
I'm a rolling stone.
With ideas like that, no wonder most people are in terrible debt. "Go ahead and buy the most expensive thing you can with whatever money you have, regardless of whether or not it actually suits your needs!"
You can't read can you, I said if he has the cash, go for the best.

And, who says he needs to borrow money for it, lots of assumptions on your side, chill out.
 

needfx

Suspended
Aug 10, 2010
3,931
4,241
macrumors apparently
With ideas like that, no wonder most people are in terrible debt. "Go ahead and buy the most expensive thing you can with whatever money you have, regardless of whether or not it actually suits your needs!"

For example, there's no way extra video card memory could possibly help with video editing but I suppose MacPat333 doesn't need to know that, he should just get "the best" stuff?

Personally I would feel horrible telling somebody to get a top-end built-to-order 27" iMac to do some light (YouTube) video editing, when they could just get the $1200 model and be perfectly satisfied. That's almost a $2000 difference they could use to help pay off their mortgage or send their kid to college.
he can always hustle some dough on pool tables
 

motrek

macrumors 68020
Sep 14, 2012
2,428
150
You can't read can you, I said if he has the cash, go for the best.
...
Nope, you're the one who can't read. I'm clearly saying that your "if you have the cash, go for the best" policy is ridiculous. What's wrong with a policy of buying what you need instead of "the best" and saving the difference? Just because you can afford something doesn't mean you should buy it. I suspect you are too young to have learned this yet, although I do come across some adults with a mindset similar to yours too.
 

justperry

macrumors G4
Aug 10, 2007
10,710
6,278
I'm a rolling stone.
Nope, you're the one who can't read. I'm clearly saying that your "if you have the cash, go for the best" policy is ridiculous. What's wrong with a policy of buying what you need instead of "the best" and saving the difference? Just because you can afford something doesn't mean you should buy it. I suspect you are too young to have learned this yet, although I do come across some adults with a mindset similar to yours too.
Stop attacking people, I am here to help the OP, not to get into some fight.

The end, I am gone.
 

needfx

Suspended
Aug 10, 2010
3,931
4,241
macrumors apparently
Nope, you're the one who can't read. I'm clearly saying that your "if you have the cash, go for the best" policy is ridiculous. What's wrong with a policy of buying what you need instead of "the best" and saving the difference? Just because you can afford something doesn't mean you should buy it. I suspect you are too young to have learned this yet, although I do come across some adults with a mindset similar to yours too.
many people want the best even if they don't need it/can't afford it. I do understand your point but unless you have an active interest in them not spending much, I can't see what your problem is.

moreover, how have your rants towards justperry helped the threadstarter's question?
 

MacPat333

macrumors regular
Original poster
Sep 16, 2012
140
0
Dubai
First of all thanks to everyone, but no need to fight over this.

Obviously, regardless of how much money someone has, there is no need to waste any of it!

Maybe I should have given the information, that with time I might start doing some more than just youtube videos. If I will find the time and maybe some talent in me I could start doing some more demanding stuff, but for the beginning youtube is the focus.

However, please don't think that I am talking here about family sharing holiday videos kinda stuff. I have car spotting as hobby and therefore record some pretty unique & exotic super sport cars.

For the end of the year I am planning several video shots with a tuned Mercedes C63 AMG with 900bhp as well as a video of a AC Cobra. If these will work out I might get some more busy with more sportcars.

Therefore I will need some gear to process big amounts of video data, video editing and cutting them together to some kind of "masterpiece".


I might go for the highest processor and with the easy to upgrade DIY RAM the 4GB stock might be ok. I have read now that most iMac after 2011 support 32GB of RAM, which is what I would opt for. I rather get the highest possible RAM that I can now and don't need to worry about it later. But why is the 2GB graphics card not recomendable?

I thought, that more is better, especially when lookinginto video and photo editing!

Thanks for the benchmark links.

As far as I understand this, with the 3.1 GHz processor in the maxed out iMac 27" I will be more than 10x faster compared to my current Asus Eee PC.

How can I translate the 16 or even 32GB of RAM vs. the 2GB I have now in speed?

And what about the graphics card? I've got currently a Mobile Intel(R) 945 Express Chispet card according to what I found.

Thanks guys!
 

needfx

Suspended
Aug 10, 2010
3,931
4,241
macrumors apparently
First of all thanks to everyone, but no need to fight over this.

Obviously, regardless of how much money someone has, there is no need to waste any of it!

Maybe I should have given the information, that with time I might start doing some more than just youtube videos. If I will find the time and maybe some talent in me I could start doing some more demanding stuff, but for the beginning youtube is the focus.

However, please don't think that I am talking here about family sharing holiday videos kinda stuff. I have car spotting as hobby and therefore record some pretty unique & exotic super sport cars.

For the end of the year I am planning several video shots with a tuned Mercedes C63 AMG with 900bhp as well as a video of a AC Cobra. If these will work out I might get some more busy with more sportcars.

Therefore I will need some gear to process big amounts of video data, video editing and cutting them together to some kind of "masterpiece".


I might go for the highest processor and with the easy to upgrade DIY RAM the 4GB stock might be ok. I have read now that most iMac after 2011 support 32GB of RAM, which is what I would opt for. I rather get the highest possible RAM that I can now and don't need to worry about it later. But why is the 2GB graphics card not recomendable?

I thought, that more is better, especially when lookinginto video and photo editing!

Thanks for the benchmark links.

As far as I understand this, with the 3.1 GHz processor in the maxed out iMac 27" I will be more than 10x faster compared to my current Asus Eee PC.

How can I translate the 16 or even 32GB of RAM vs. the 2GB I have now in speed?

And what about the graphics card? I've got currently a Mobile Intel(R) 945 Express Chispet card according to what I found.

Thanks guys!
hi again

32Gb of RAM is definitely overkill, an 8Gb is quite alright for editing and plenty of effects while 16Gb is far beyond ideal.

RAM speed is mainly defined by the below, and not by amount of Gb

clocked Mhz (800Mhz, 1066Mhz, 1333Mhz)
timings ( 3-4-4-8, 5-5-5-15, 7-7-7-21, or 9-9-9-24 - lower is better)
classification (DDR2, DDR3)

as with the card, T'hain Esh Kelch's point is valid.
that 2Gb card would be appropriate to your profile (along with the 16Gb/32Gb RAM) if you intended to get into serious compositing & motion graphics, but in such a case, you wouldn't be purchasing an iMac.

still, you can use it as a gaming card
 

motrek

macrumors 68020
Sep 14, 2012
2,428
150
...
Therefore I will need some gear to process big amounts of video data, video editing and cutting them together to some kind of "masterpiece".

I might go for the highest processor and with the easy to upgrade DIY RAM the 4GB stock might be ok. I have read now that most iMac after 2011 support 32GB of RAM, which is what I would opt for. I rather get the highest possible RAM that I can now and don't need to worry about it later. But why is the 2GB graphics card not recomendable?

I thought, that more is better, especially when lookinginto video and photo editing!
...
As far as I understand this, with the 3.1 GHz processor in the maxed out iMac 27" I will be more than 10x faster compared to my current Asus Eee PC.

How can I translate the 16 or even 32GB of RAM vs. the 2GB I have now in speed?

And what about the graphics card? I've got currently a Mobile Intel(R) 945 Express Chispet card according to what I found.
...
Lots of things to go over here.

First, no offense, just trying to save you some money, but your current Atom-based computer is out-specced by many high-end cell phones these days. Even the cheapest Mac Mini is going to be so many times faster than your current computer in every regard that it's pointless to compare them, so please don't think that you have to pay $2000+ to get something that's significantly better. The fact that you mention watching HD YouTube videos as a potentially taxing activity for a computer shows just how overkill a top-spec iMac would be for you, since Apple hasn't sold anything that would struggle to play HD YouTube videos in years.

Second, definitely just get the base 4GB of RAM from Apple since their upgrades are a ripoff. The amount of RAM that will be useful to you will depend on the size of the videos you're working with. You might as well buy two sticks of 8GB RAM (I recommend NewEgg) and if that's enough for you, good. If you need more, then it's a trivially simple process to upgrade again. There's no advantage to installing 32GB all at once like you're thinking about.

The reason a nicer graphics card might help you with video editing is if you're doing a lot of video effects that are offloaded via OpenCL, which uses the graphics chip (GPU) for stream processing. A chip with a higher model number (e.g., 6970M vs. 6770M) usually has more stream processor cores. But for stream processing, the amount of memory on the graphics card is basically irrelevant. Data gets read into the card, processed, and then read out. That extra memory, in general, is only used for storing 3-D textures which is typically only useful when playing 3-D video games.

If you're mainly going to be splicing video clips together, maybe with simple transitions and effects, then there's really no point to paying extra for a faster CPU or GPU. But if you're going to be doing a ton of complicated effects then the Core i7 will be an advantage because it has hyperthreading. The minor differences in clock speeds between the various Core i5 models are really almost irrelevant.

To be perfectly honest, again, I think you would be ecstatic even with a base model iMac. If you doubt me, maybe you can find somebody who has one (friend of a friend?) and try theirs out for a little while? Maybe spend half an hour editing some video clips?

BTW -- here's a page that might interest you with some benchmark scores and especially notes on how Final Cut Pro uses resources at the bottom:

http://www.barefeats.com/fcpx01.html
 
Last edited:

MacPat333

macrumors regular
Original poster
Sep 16, 2012
140
0
Dubai
Thank you very much do te in depth reply and information.

Now, reading all of the above I started to think I a rMBP might be an option for me and my requirements?

I am however concerned about the lifespan of the battery as I am planning to use whatever I gonna buy for around 3-5 years.

I would love to have the big screen of the iMac to make use of it as 2nd TV in the bedroom, but the portability in case we might move for good back to Europe is another thing I am a bit worried about. This could happen sometimes within the next 3 years.

I am confused to which Apple would be the best solution for me.

Thanks.
 
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