I am going to switch, need some iMac advice

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by Audio Blood, May 26, 2010.

  1. Audio Blood macrumors member

    May 20, 2010
    Hey everyone! I have always been a Windows user but I've been having problems lately and have been thinking about switching for a few months now. Other than my iPods I am completely new to Apple products and Macs, although I have worked with them in school. My current Dell laptop has lasted me 4 and a half years but I'd like to buy a mac before it dies, so I'm considering the iMac, and now that the BTS event is here, I want to make sure I have the right model to suit my needs, etc.

    These are the main things I want to be able to do:
    -Play a couple of games, The Sims 3 and Second Life.
    -Use the Adobe suite quite often (Photoshop and Illustrator mainly) with my Wacom tablet for art and graphic design work.
    -and possibly some light video editing in the future, but not right away, just an idea.

    Any advice would be great, this is the model I'm considering.

    21.5-inch: 3.06GHz
    3.06GHz Intel Core 2 Duo
    1920 x 1080 resolution
    4GB memory
    1TB hard drive1
    8x double-layer SuperDrive
    ATI Radeon HD 4670 graphics with 256MB

    Now, I don't know much about some of the technical things (like would the Intel core 2 duo as bad as some people make it out to be? Should I wait for WWDC, any idea if this iMac model is due for an update?) so any help would be great. I feel that the 27" is too big for my needs otherwise I would go for that. I guess I'm just looking for some general guidance since I haven't bought a new computer in quite a few years.

    Also, looking at the Sims 3 website for its system requirements, it looks like the video card on the lower end iMac model is supported and the one I listed above is not. Ug o.o I wanted this model because of the 1tb hard drive, but I guess I could always use an external. Anyway for the game:

    MAC OS X Supported Video Cards
    NVIDIA GeForce series
    7300, 7600
    8600, 8800
    9400M, 9600M GT
    GT 120, GT 130

    ATI Radeon™ series
    X1600, X1900
    2400, 2600
    4850, 4870

    Intel® Graphics Media Accelerator (GMA)
    GMA 3-Series

    Sorry for the long post, I guess I need some advice/guidance. Any would be appreciated, thank you. Keep in mind money isn't the absolute deciding factor but I'd like to keep it under $2,000.
  2. Hellhammer Moderator


    Staff Member

    Dec 10, 2008
    Unless you really need it now, think about waiting for the update. It should bring some fresh flesh to 21.5". That GPU list just hasn't been updated, it doesn't include e.g. 320M or 330M. ATI 4670 will run them fine
  3. idonotliketostu macrumors 6502

    Feb 28, 2008
    All current mac will play sim3 and 2nd life just fine. As there will always be upgrades in the future, i don't see the point in waiting maybe except mac thing next month since its just a couple days away.
  4. Audio Blood thread starter macrumors member

    May 20, 2010
    Awesome, thank you guys. So the model I originally listed won't have any problems playing the games? I know for The Sims 3 the graphics are heavier than older games, I don't want it to be laggy or anything.

    Sorry for the silly questions, I am just lost when it comes to the technical things D:. The WWDC in June will be when (if) they announce any new updates for the 21.5" am I correct?
  5. alust2013 macrumors 601


    Feb 6, 2010
    On the fence
    Yeah, that model would run Sims 3 just fine, I can run it on my MB with the 9400m (much less powerful), shouldn't lag. And if you wait, the WWDC is in June, and that's when the new models would be announced.
  6. EasyJW macrumors member

    Apr 22, 2010
    It would run sims fine but if you can wait, wait as there will be new imacs soon[​IMG]
  7. markiv810 macrumors regular

    Sep 27, 2002
    in Limbo
    I am also waiting to buy iMac too, any chances of iMac being introduced by WWDC. I hope Apple is able to resolve the 27" iMac issues.
  8. mr.steevo macrumors 65816


    Jul 21, 2004

    Keep in mind that the 27" iMac RAM can upgrade to 16GB where as the 21.5" maxes at 8GB. That may not mean much right now but years later the expandability may make a difference to you.

    Definitely wait for the upcoming update as there may be an elimination of the C2D processors and have the i5's and i7's across the board. Worth the wait if that is the case. Don't forget to get the Educational Pricing that Apple offers.

    Are you planning to purchase new Adobe suite software for the Mac or use your existing PC copy? You can run PC software on the Mac with the right software.

  9. Audio Blood thread starter macrumors member

    May 20, 2010
    Thanks everyone! And thanks Steevo, I will definitely be using my education discount regardless, I was just excited about a free iPod, but I'll see if the new iMac updates outweigh that.

    I am still deciding on that, I'll probably just use bootcamp for the time being. Also, I just feel that the 27" is too big and I'd rather save a couple hundred bucks if I can.

    Do you think 4GB is enough to suit my needs for the time being, or should I just upgrade to 8GB right off the bat?

    Thanks again!
  10. rusty2192 macrumors 6502a

    Oct 15, 2008
    Both support 16GB RAM

    I know this doesn't pertain to this thread exactly since the OP has stated that the 27" isn't for them, but to clear up any future confusion, both the 21.5" and 27" iMacs support up to 16GB of RAM (4 slots, up to 4GB each). I do see that the BTO is limited to just 8GB for the 21.5", but there is nothing stopping you from buying third party RAM, or even just buying a couple more Apple sticks and throwing them in there.

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