i7 4.0 w/2TB fusion w/128gb ssd VS 256SSD ?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by truckmount, Jan 9, 2016.

  1. truckmount macrumors newbie

    truckmount

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2015
    #1
    help me choose which one would be better for my needs, I am having a tough decision between these two.

    Which one would be better in the long run and why OR would it be overkill for me on a later time?!

    I will be using Chrome with 20 tabs, slack, Evernote and Wunderlist apps constantly 10 hours a day and do minor video editing from cell for 4K editing.

    4.0 i7 (or i5 3.3)
    2TB w/128gb
    16GB ram

    Or
    4.0 i7
    256SSD and hook it up to a thunderbolt 2 storage for storing extra files and movies.
     
  2. MadDane macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2015
    #2
    Do you have any requirements in terms of finances? Option 2 is a good deal more expensive than option 1. That being said, here is what I would probably do in your case.

    Save the money for the i7 and get the i5. Unless you plan on keeping this machine for 6+ years, it seems a bit overkill. As for storage I would say it comes down to personal preference. I (personally) do not want a spinning hard drive inside my machine in this day and age. Also, I have experienced 2/2 stock hard drives fail in 27" iMacs. For those reasons alone I would take the 256GB SSD over the 2TB Fusion Drive. However, I understand the benefits from a Fusion Drive (heck I have even made my own in my late 2009 some years ago) so if finances is of any importance, then this might be the better option. A third option is to get the 256GB SSD and supplement with USB3 storage (no need to pay the premium for Thunderbolt with spinning hard drives for your needs).That way you will get both the speed of the larger SSD without having to shell out too much for external storage.
     
  3. truckmount thread starter macrumors newbie

    truckmount

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2015
    #3
    I have a 2TB Lacie thunderbolt storage from a year+ ago. I use that mainly for large files...but it's filling up so now I'm uploading files to google drive unlimited storage but all this is getting costly. So if I get the i5 instead of i7, you think I'll be able to run all those programs at once and slight video editing in 4K with no problems? I plan on keeping this for the next 4 years, I tend to upgrade about that many years and phone every other year. Biggest decision is if I really need the better graphic card, fusion or full SSD and/or higher ram ugh.
     
  4. MadDane macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2015
    #4
    I have never worked with 4k video (I do photo editing, renderings and other creations that do not involve video) so I do not have any experience working with it. However, I know that you will of course benefit from more power, but the question you need to ask yourself is if the extra money is worth it, given that you will only do that occasionally. Furthermore you say the footage it is from your cell phone, so I assume it is an iPhone 6s(+)?

    I can run Lightroom, Photoshop, Illustrator, Indesign, Keyshot (rendering), Creo in Windows 7 through VMware, Matlab and a lot of other things on my late 2013 MacBook Pro retina with 2.6Ghz Dual Core i5. Yes, sometimes it requires some patience. But this machine has way less power than the Quad Core i5 in the late 2015 iMac, so I would argue that you would be perfectly fine with the i5 and not notice the difference with your stated usage.

    So what I would do in your case is to stick with the 3.3 GHz i5 and M395. That will be more than adequate for your usage for the next 4 years as I see it. RAM you can add 16GB for cheap with aftermarket parts for a total of 24GB. That will easily keep you running during the 4 years, given that your usage doesn't change much. The storage is up to you. I would personally take the 256GB SSD + external drive over the 2TB Fusion Drive. You can get a 2-4TB USB3 HDD for cheap these days. But if you like the convenience of having everything on one drive, the Fusion Drive might be a better option.

    Oh, and don't forget backup storage! :D
     
  5. Cape Dave macrumors 65816

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    Nov 16, 2012
    Location:
    Northeast
    #5
    You can always get more external storage. You cannot so easily update the internal SSD.
     
  6. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #6
    Do you want your data on the internal drive or on external drives, ultimately that's what the question boils down too. I went the 2TB Fusion drive route, because I didn't want to mess with external drives, but if you don't then get the 256SSD.

    I consider my purchase a 128GB SSD and a 2 TB hard drive and from that perspective I get the speed of a SSD and gobs of storage w/o the high cost.
     
  7. Sirmausalot macrumors 6502a

    Sirmausalot

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2007
    #7
    are you thinking of apple upgrading the ram? either way, start with 8gb and put the money towards parts you can't upgrade easily later The i7 and the ssd. can you afford the 512 if you don't upgrade RAM now? also, a usb3 external is cheaper and in nearly all cases just as good.
     
  8. truckmount thread starter macrumors newbie

    truckmount

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2015
    #8
    I'd like all my apps, photos, daily stuff to be on the SSD and I'd like to move just movie files and iPhone backups on the external.

    I will be using the OCW to upgrade my ram from 8 to 24 (or 32).

    I'm thinking of getting the 3.3 i5 (I think the i7 might be overkill for me or what do you think??) 395X 4g ram, 8gb ram, 512gb SSD. 2749 with 6% off.
     
  9. Cape Dave macrumors 65816

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    Nov 16, 2012
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    Northeast
    #9
    I got that exact build, but the first version. I have been nothing but TOTALLY HAPPY about this computer. I can add RAM any time I want to :)
     
  10. Sirmausalot macrumors 6502a

    Sirmausalot

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2007
    #10
    That's essentially what I have and it's a great piece of kit. I went with the i7 for video editing. However, in your situation, I'd put more money towards the i7 and not upgrade the RAM just because most people actually don't need as much RAM as they think and the flash drive is so fast, a few page swaps here and there don't really affect performance that much these days. The i7 is perhaps overkill, but it will improve performance slightly and gives you more room to grow. Either way you're fine.
     
  11. briloronmacrumo, Jan 10, 2016
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2016

    briloronmacrumo macrumors 6502

    briloronmacrumo

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    Jan 25, 2008
    Location:
    USA
    #11
    In 5 years, after five OS X updates( and all the extra cruft ), the i7 should still be acceptably productive. You might question your choice in 5 years if the i5 is slowing under the weight of new apps and OS updates.
     
  12. Cape Dave macrumors 65816

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    Nov 16, 2012
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    #12
    I went with the i5 for heat reasons. Make that heat and quietness. I hate heat and noise.
     
  13. bogg macrumors 6502

    bogg

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    Sweden
    #13
    Do you really think the 7W of difference in TDP between the two would make any noticeable difference in everyday use?
     
  14. jazzer15 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2010
    #14
    Everyone seems to go back and forth about these issues (including me). It's not easy. People have different approaches when purchasing a computer.

    Ask yourself first if money is a concern for you. If not, the next question is will you feel worse if you spend the money on upgrades that ultimately don't make much of a difference or if you don't spend the money and you later wish you had. Also, you need to know whether you are the type of person who will be bothered by the "what if" question. If money is not an issue, act according to your answers to the above questions.

    If money is a concern and you know that you need to remain in a budget, the questions get a bit more difficult. In that case, I would argue that the less expensive option is the best as it appears that you should be fine in either event.

    Another thing to consider is resale value. If you buy a better spec computer today and plan to sell it in 4 years, you should get a little extra money back at that point.

    The Fusion vs SSD issue in your case is really just a question of whether you want to deal with another external drive (you will need backup in any event).

    I'm sure I didn't answer anything for you, but maybe the questions will help crystalize the issues for you. I'm very good at the questions (not so much the answers :) ).
     
  15. truckmount thread starter macrumors newbie

    truckmount

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2015
    #15
    Thanks. The only type of video editing I'll be doing is just from the 4K go pro camera prolly like 10 videos a month. I'm torn between i7 or i5 and the 2gb or 4gb video card. I'm already set on the 512GB SSD and I'm buying the extra ram of Osw To either make it 24 or 32. I don't care waiting a few min for video editing I just don't want it to be choppy when I'm editing or viewing....so if I have to wait like couple min more I'm fine but if I have to wait like 50+% more then I will spend the extra money not to.
    --- Post Merged, Jan 10, 2016 ---
    I also forgot to mention I'm thinking about editing the video on the 512, then move it onto the external backup drive then upload that main video file to google drive (I have google apps with unlimited space)
     
  16. Cape Dave macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2012
    Location:
    Northeast
    #16
    I had no way of knowing, but since I did not need the i7 for any reason, and it was a great big unknown how loud the fan would be as it was brand new to market when I purchased, I erred on the side of caution. And you know what? Never has it gone above the default 1200 RPM and is the very definition of quiet computer. Each computer has a point at which fan throttling will be an issue. Not a fan of fan throttling :)

    I wanted to go with the lower graphics as well, but figured that with all those pixels to move around, it would be wise to throw some power at them :)

    I also know that Apple has a tendency to run things hot. And call that "normal". Not much room for cooling in hyper thin designs.
     
  17. briloronmacrumo macrumors 6502

    briloronmacrumo

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2008
    Location:
    USA
    #17
    Heat is my concern too. However, these two videos ( especially the first ) allayed my concerns a little ( but not completely - see my later notes ).



    It is interesting to notice how both these videos do not consider 90 degrees C as too hot. On my mid-2011 iMac I consider temperatures above 120 F too hot because during light usage it runs 90 to 100 F. Clearly the newer iMacs run hotter.

    Noise is a lot more subjective( unless someone posts decibel meter readings ). What is noisy for some is perfectly acceptable to others.
     
  18. bogg, Jan 11, 2016
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2016

    bogg macrumors 6502

    bogg

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2005
    Location:
    Sweden
    #18
    The 6700k throttles down at 100C@core, so 90C is well within intels specified "ok" temperature range at full load.

    I've seen a few posts regarding the 6700k having a tCase of 63C and complaining about the i7 reaching 90C. But they are forgetting that the 90C is _core temp_ while the tCase temp is the temp of the heat spreader on the cpu, which can't really be measured for an end user, but I guess Apple has measures it intensively and come to the conclusion that it is ok.

    If it was any reason to worry about 90C full load temps, Intel would throttle down sooner, there's really no risk of damaging the cpu before the temp reaches 120C, and the throttling should keep it lower than that (and I've never seen a report of anyone reaching those temps on an iMac).

    In the late 90s someone told me that the calculated core temp when doing lifetime calculations on intel pentium CPUs was 40C, every 10C increase in average temps halved the calculated lifetime. So an hour at 90C would equal 32 hours at 40C.
    The CPUs from Intel has since improved and nowadays it's rather maybe 16 hours at that temp or even less due to better thermal handling. (This was a simplified calculation, I know now that is is more complex, but it still gives a good idea on the expected lifespan)

    The Intel haswell line of CPUs as an example has an mtbf of 120000 hours, even at a constant 90C (24/7) those would if the above is correct live for almost a year. Most users only use their computers a few hours per day and they sit idle or at low load most of that time. the types of people that are putting their CPUs at 100% load for 24/7 weeks on end doesn't buy an iMac...
     

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