I'm a "believer" in the MHz/GHz myth...

iMJustAGuy

macrumors 68020
Original poster
Sep 10, 2007
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Beach, FL
I am in no way computer illiterate but I have a few questions. I am about to purchase a 27 inch iMac and I wanted to know how drastic the difference between the i5 and the 3.06 are. I look at 2.66ghz and feel like I am getting less (I know I'm not). I could survive fine with my needs on the 3.06 but I am all about the latest and greatest and have no problem paying the extra $300 IF the difference is VERY noticable. I know I won't be doing heavy video editing so, is that the main place the difference would be noticable?

I read these threads and honestly I am so stuck between what to purchase. I know what would be suitable for my needs; the 3.06. But I just --- DON'T KNOW. Please Help. Also- Aftermarket RAM does NOT void the warrenty, correct?
 

pionata

macrumors 6502
Oct 12, 2005
446
0
Montreal
I am in no way computer illiterate but I have a few questions. I am about to purchase a 27 inch iMac and I wanted to know how drastic the difference between the i5 and the 3.06 are. I look at 2.66ghz and feel like I am getting less (I know I'm not). I could survive fine with my needs on the 3.06 but I am all about the latest and greatest and have no problem paying the extra $300 IF the difference is VERY noticable. I know I won't be doing heavy video editing so, is that the main place the difference would be noticable?

I read these threads and honestly I am so stuck between what to purchase. I know what would be suitable for my needs; the 3.06. But I just --- DON'T KNOW. Please Help. Also- Aftermarket RAM does NOT void the warrenty, correct?
The i5 and the i7 are Quad cores cpu while the 3.06 is dual core.
It's over twice as fast in the benchmarks, I didn't hesitate one bit and went for the i7.

http://browse.geekbench.ca/geekbench2/search?q=imac+3.06&commit=Search [around 4300 for Core duo 64 bit test]
http://browse.geekbench.ca/geekbench2/search?q=imac+i7+2.8&commit=Search [around 9500 for i7 64 bit test] (around 7500 for the i5)

The i7 is even beating the Mac Pro (Early 2008) Intel Xeon X5482 3.2 GHz (8 cores) and Mac Pro (Early 2009) Intel Xeon W3540 2.93 GHz (8 cores)
http://www.primatelabs.ca/blog/mac-benchmarks/

Beating the crap out of standard pcs (except those rare build from power users), even the Intel Core i7 920 (16 cores) @ 2670 MHz
http://www.primatelabs.ca/blog/pc-benchmarks/


If it's only for web browsing sure, the 27" screen with a core duo is still a great machine. Otherwise, if you plan on doing some studio work on it I would go for the i5 or i7.
 

Hellhammer

Moderator emeritus
Dec 10, 2008
22,076
580
Finland
Lets do it this way:

3.06GHz x 2 = 6.06GHz
2.66GHz (3.2GHz) x 4 = 10.64GHz (12.8GHz)

That's not right way to do it but should give you an idea. Numbers in brackets are the speed with Turbo Boost that i5 has.

In any rendering or importing/exporting quad core will be faster, especially if it supports quad core. I bet the resale value won't go down as much as C2D's would because tech is moving away from dual cores all the time and benefits from quad core are becoming bigger and better
 

JNB

macrumors 604
MHz isn't MPH. ;) You can't compare clock speeds directly between different processor classes, even with the same number of cores. With different core multiples, it's even harder.

And no, aftermarket RAM does not void the warranty.
 

pionata

macrumors 6502
Oct 12, 2005
446
0
Montreal
Lets do it this way:

3.06GHz x 2 = 6.06GHz
2.66GHz (3.2GHz) x 4 = 10.64GHz (12.8GHz)

That's not right way to do it but should give you an idea. Numbers in brackets are the speed with Turbo Boost that i5 has.

In any rendering or importing/exporting quad core will be faster, especially if it supports quad core. I bet the resale value won't go down as much as C2D's would because tech is moving away from dual cores all the time and benefits from quad core are becoming bigger and better
Actually, it is almost the case, with a slight optimization.

i7 2.8x4 = 11.2ghz

Dual core 3x2 = 6ghz

11.2/6 = 1.86 (almost twice more ghz)
9500/4300 (Geekbench) = 2.2 (over twice more power)
 

MacHamster68

macrumors 68040
Sep 17, 2009
3,252
3
the i7 is the fastest , the i5 is just a bit behind and at the end of the table sits the dual core
but unless you really push your computer all the time with heavy video editing and massive graphical work you wont even notice the difference in normal usage , read normal as webbrowsing , office work ,film watching and the od game
as then a i7 would be overkill as i cant see the point of buying a computer and not even use a quarter of its potential
so get the dual core and put the money you saved towards a nice holiday
 

slicecom

macrumors 68020
Aug 29, 2003
2,058
90
Toronto, Canada
the i7 is the fastest , the i5 is just a bit behind and at the end of the table sits the dual core
but unless you really push your computer all the time with heavy video editing and massive graphical work you wont even notice the difference in normal usage , read normal as webbrowsing , office work ,film watching and the od game
as then a i7 would be overkill as i cant see the point of buying a computer and not even use a quarter of its potential
so get the dual core and put the money you saved towards a nice holiday
He'd be wiser to put that money into a savings account for his next Mac since the C2D will be obsolete much sooner than the i5 or i7 will.
 

iMJustAGuy

macrumors 68020
Original poster
Sep 10, 2007
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Beach, FL
He'd be wiser to put that money into a savings account for his next Mac since the C2D will be obsolete much sooner than the i5 or i7 will.
Would I be wiser to put the extra $300 and get the Quad so I can re-sell it? Because I can almost guarantee that if it significantly changes I will re-sell this and get the next gen (even if it does come out this year).


I will be doing light HD video editing also if that helps with anyone's advice.
 

dh2005

macrumors 6502a
Jan 25, 2010
907
0
Thanks to the OP for this thread. I had a similar question, myself.


Also, to pionata; your sig just made me laugh like a drain...!
 

quagmire

macrumors 603
Apr 19, 2004
6,255
1,063
Lets do it this way:

3.06GHz x 2 = 6.06GHz
2.66GHz (3.2GHz) x 4 = 10.64GHz (12.8GHz)

That's not right way to do it but should give you an idea. Numbers in brackets are the speed with Turbo Boost that i5 has.

In any rendering or importing/exporting quad core will be faster, especially if it supports quad core. I bet the resale value won't go down as much as C2D's would because tech is moving away from dual cores all the time and benefits from quad core are becoming bigger and better
When the i5 is running at 3.2 Ghz, it is running as a dual core.
 

pionata

macrumors 6502
Oct 12, 2005
446
0
Montreal
Would I be wiser to put the extra $300 and get the Quad so I can re-sell it? Because I can almost guarantee that if it significantly changes I will re-sell this and get the next gen (even if it does come out this year).


I will be doing light HD video editing also if that helps with anyone's advice.
Hey, it will not "significantly change" any time soon. It is brand new and most people haven't even received theirs yet.

They'll probably have regular slight processor upgrade every 6 months and perhaps an optional bluRay. I dont think they'll change the design before 2012 or the end of 2011.
 

iMJustAGuy

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Original poster
Sep 10, 2007
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Beach, FL
Hey, it will not "significantly change" any time soon. It is brand new and most people haven't even received theirs yet.

They'll probably have regular slight processor upgrade every 6 months and perhaps an optional bluRay. I dont think they'll change the design before 2012 or the end of 2011.
While I know it is a rumor; a recent front page article that stated Apple recently said "2010 iMacs will bring Apple to the next level" is kind of scaring me. I fully understand the -if you always wait for the next new revision, you'll never buy anything- theory but this factors in to what I purchase now. I am at a complete standstill as far as what to do. *long sigh*
 

yamawho

macrumors newbie
Jan 16, 2010
24
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Rosemere Qc Canada
The architecture is why the cpu's are faster not the Ghz ...

4 cores does not mean 4 times faster.

Synthetic benchmarks are not a measure of real world performance.

Apps need to be coded for multiple cores and if they are not, it's running on one core. Most games run on two cores today ...
 

iMJustAGuy

macrumors 68020
Original poster
Sep 10, 2007
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Beach, FL
The architecture is why the cpu's are faster not the Ghz ...

4 cores does not mean 4 times faster.

Synthetic benchmarks are not a measure of real world performance.

Apps need to be coded for multiple cores and if they are not, it's running on one core. Most games run on two cores today ...
Are you saying stick with the c2d?
 

pionata

macrumors 6502
Oct 12, 2005
446
0
Montreal
While I know it is a rumor; a recent front page article that stated Apple recently said "2010 iMacs will bring Apple to the next level" is kind of scaring me. I fully understand the -if you always wait for the next new revision, you'll never buy anything- theory but this factors in to what I purchase now. I am at a complete standstill as far as what to do. *long sigh*
I'm getting the iMac because I know it's strong enough to run my music studio and I dont plan to change my system for a minimum of 3-4 years once I get it working.

I also alternate, after the new iMac I ordered, I'll get a laptop (once it's much faster than the iMac and the technology is very different) and use the iMac as external monitor for the laptop.


Since I dont see any technological upgrades on the horizon besides touchscreens monitors (something I actually hate), solid states drives (you can get external ones) or bluray (don't have time to watch movies). So I really don't see why I should be freaked out about the "2010 apple revolution". ;)

USB3 perhaps? But it will take years before some device I want is usb3 only.

I think he said it to make the market shares go up as it went down after the iPad release.
 

SnowLeopard2008

macrumors 604
Jul 4, 2008
6,772
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Silicon Valley
Just because in synthetic benchmarks, the Core i7 is "twice as fast" as the Core i5 doesn't mean anything to you. For Intel, it means they succeeded in separating you from a coupe hundred dollars more.

Until more of the applications I use, which include FCE/FCS, Adobe CS4, Maya, AutoCAD, etc. are optimized for multi-core (more than 2 core) processors, Core iX processors won't offer you better performance. It does however, give you more bragging rights in front of your friends and overclocking capabilities. Current applications nowadays are optimized for dual cores, which majority of people have right now.

Truth is, unless your doing high end stuff, like advanced mathematical calculations, servers, etc., the Core i5 is good enough. I haven't seen any consumer level uses for Core i7 processors, or even Core i5 for that matter. It's all about benchmarking, HandBrake, etc. I've seen servers, use in research labs and the like.
 

pionata

macrumors 6502
Oct 12, 2005
446
0
Montreal
Just because in synthetic benchmarks, the Core i7 is "twice as fast" as the Core i5 doesn't mean anything to you. For Intel, it means they succeeded in separating you from a coupe hundred dollars more.

Until more of the applications I use, which include FCE/FCS, Adobe CS4, Maya, AutoCAD, etc. are optimized for multi-core (more than 2 core) processors, Core iX processors won't offer you better performance. It does however, give you more bragging rights in front of your friends and overclocking capabilities. Current applications nowadays are optimized for dual cores, which majority of people have right now.

Truth is, unless your doing high end stuff, like advanced mathematical calculations, servers, etc., the Core i5 is good enough.
You probably meant the Core Duo is good enough for him right? The i5 is a Quad and is just a tad (10-20%) slower than the i7, not twice slower.
 

MacHamster68

macrumors 68040
Sep 17, 2009
3,252
3
if someone thinks the core duo will be obsolete, then i have to bring you down on earth again, as the i7 in the imac is obsolete too as there are faster i7 versions made by intel already like the i7 extreme editions so now i have that of my chest

a computer is only obsolete when it cant be used for anything any more

so my iMac g3 700 is still in use every day for webbrowsing , emailing, itunes watching divx video (streamed via ethernet )or watching a dvd and it does still a fine job
so it is far from obsolete and it is really really quiet ,its convection cooled so no roaring fans ,and the harddrive is silent too , cant get a better computer for the bedroom , would not even consider to swap it for anything ,its just the perfect computer

speed is not everything
 

ajohnson253

macrumors 68000
Jun 16, 2008
1,751
0
I do the exact same things you do maybe even a little more on my computer and I was stuck in the same situation. For 1,699 for the 27" 3.06 I thought that was a really good deal so I went for it. I didn't need anything else extra then what it already is. I went from doing everything I did on my 15" 2.4 GHZ UMBP to this 27" 3.06 and it's pretty much more then enough then what I do day to day.

Save yourself the 300 bucks and save it or do whatever else you want with it, and get the 3.06. You will not be disappointed and there is no way that the Intel Core 2 Duo is obsolete because it works with everything I need it to work with.

You can also hit the Apple store and try both products and see if you notice a difference for the things you will be doing everyday.