iMac 20" vs 24"

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by zuma022, May 18, 2008.

  1. zuma022 macrumors regular

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    May 18, 2008
    #1
    I'm planning to buy an iMac and was wondering if I could pick your brains a bit. I will mostly use it for internet/email, but I also do a little bit of webdesign on the side which means I'll have Dreamweaver, Flash and Photoshop running, probably all at the same time. I don't game on the computer (got an Xbox) and I do very, very little video editing and use word processor every once in a while.

    Now my question is I think the 20" screen is big enough for me. I still have a 17" on my current PC and while it would sometimes be nice to have a bit more space I haven't been overly annoyed by it. Even when I use Photoshop it's mostly for web graphics, so they're not huge either.
    I'm wondering about the speed though. I think I'd go for the 4gb RAM either way, but would I notice a big difference between 2.66Ghz and 3.06Ghz? Is it worth to go for the bigger one just for that?
    Another problem is space on the desk. The 24" would be a pretty tight fit. I'm torn whether I really need the top of the line for what I do with it.
    Any advice?
     
  2. mithrilfox macrumors regular

    mithrilfox

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    Nov 6, 2007
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    Japan
    #2
    The 20" should satisfy all your needs, and a little more. If you want to get a little extra bang out of your machine, get the 20" with the 256MB video card.

    But it sounds like you don't even need that one. I'll be doing a lot of HD video editing, and I'm going to be content with the iMac (used them in the stores for a bit).
     
  3. xhambonex macrumors 6502a

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    Apr 17, 2008
    #3
    Ya the 24" is giant. I think you'd be happy with the 20", and the processor speed difference isn't that big of a deal. I run the same programs you do all the time on my MBP 2.4ghz with 2gb ram (15.4" screen size for me and I'm doing ok). You'll be fine with the 20", plus it will cost less so you can buy accessories, or better yet, xbox games.
     
  4. motoxpress macrumors 6502

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    Mar 8, 2006
    #4
    The 20" is really nice and has a really nice balance of size resolution for me. The 24" is pushing it a little I think...really high res for the size. The 20" would be more than enough for what you want to do.

    -mx
     
  5. Hawkeye411 macrumors 68000

    Hawkeye411

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    Canada EH!!!
  6. SaSaSushi macrumors 68040

    SaSaSushi

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    #6
    Screen size is not the only consideration when comparing the 20" and 24" iMacs. The 24" have much higher quality LG Philips 8 bit H-IPS LCD panels while the 20" use 6 bit TN panels that use temporal dithering to simulate millions of colors.

    Regarding size, I had a 20" Core Duo iMac before my current 24" aluminum and when I first switched to the new machine I thought it was huge. Now, it just seems normal sized.

    Thanks to its slim design the footprint is not that much larger than the 20". I'm using the same desk with no problems.

    Personally, I'd recommend going for the 24" if you can swing it.
     
  7. motoxpress macrumors 6502

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    #7
    It's a good point in that the quality of the LCD is better in the 24". IF you are a print designer this is crucial. For others, it may never bother you.

    -mx
     
  8. xhambonex macrumors 6502a

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    Apr 17, 2008
    #8
    Good point about the 20" 6 bit TN screen. I keep forgetting 20" is a lower quality screen. But as much as I agree you don't want that screen IF you do print work, I wonder why you wouldn't consider a matte screen, you'll get more accurate color results over the glossy 24" iMac, no matter how beautiful the screen looks. It looks REALLY GOOD.
     
  9. scottyboy macrumors newbie

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    Dec 11, 2007
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    Brisbane, Australia
    #9
    I am a part time photoshop and dreamweaver user.... get the 24"! I appreciate having the extra screen with multiple apps open - especially interaction with the adobe apps. I was thinking the 24" would be too big for my needs and was thinking the 20". I am glad I got the 24. After getting used to it, it doesn't even look big to me anymore.
     
  10. zuma022 thread starter macrumors regular

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    May 18, 2008
    #10
    Thanks so much for your input. I have to admit I didn't notice a quality difference on the different sizes when I looked at them in the store. I'll be making another trip to check that out.
    I have it in my living room and I don't want people to only see a huge monitor when they come to my place. ;) I think that's really the biggest drawback for me as far as the size goes. I'm sure I'd get used and would probably appreciate the bigger size, but I'm not sure I need it. Thanks everyone, I really appreciate it!
     
  11. ironsidephoto macrumors member

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    Sep 22, 2007
    #11
    i have a 24" one, and i do a lot of photography processing/editing, etc. i definitely don't mind the extra space, but did ok with my 17" imac, too. one tip: don't buy ram from apple. definitely max out the ram at 4gb, but get it from a third party site. i got 4gb of ram from newegg.com for about 160 bucks about 8 months ago, which is a hell of a lot less than apple charges you for them to stick some samsung ram in there. you'll save at least a few hundred dollars that way.
     
  12. motoxpress macrumors 6502

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    #12
    4 gigs of ram is now less than $100 for these machines and the MBPs. Seems crazy.:eek:

    -mx
     
  13. Hackcomic.com macrumors regular

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    Dec 6, 2003
    #13
    I just got the 24" simply because the screen was better. I went to the Apple Store and it was really obvious how much better the 24" screen was.

    That being said- this screen is huge. Sometimes a bit too ig as my eyes are all over the place. I was planning to connect in my 19" Viewsonic as well- but now I see with the 24" there is no need for another screen.
     
  14. mithrilfox macrumors regular

    mithrilfox

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    Nov 6, 2007
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    Japan
    #14
    Speaking of memory, let's compare the Apple store's memory prices to the popular Japanese online retailer, Rakuten. On top is Rakuten, on bottom is Apple.
     

    Attached Files:

  15. zuma022 thread starter macrumors regular

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    May 18, 2008
    #15
    Thanks for that! I'll be sure to get the extra RAM from somewhere else.
     
  16. Le Big Mac macrumors 68020

    Le Big Mac

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    Washington, DC
    #16
    Yeah, this is my basic question--to whom is the difference in the screen quality (not size) likely to be important? When I took a quick look, I couldn't really tell a difference, but the look was quick (5 mins). I'm not a graphic designer, but I do do a lot of photography and some video.

    If I wanted to do my own comparison to see if my eyes could tell, what are the things I should look for?
     
  17. motoxpress macrumors 6502

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    Mar 8, 2006
    #17
    For photography, I would be inclined to the 24" as it is more color accurate. Also the extra resolution will be helpful for editing in photoshop.

    -mx
     
  18. SaSaSushi macrumors 68040

    SaSaSushi

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    Takamatsu, Japan
    #18
    Well, you could start with the viewing angle. The 24" has a far wider one and this will be quite obvious if you look at them side by side.

    I gotta agree that if you're using the machine for photography work you will be much happier with the 24"
     
  19. Hackcomic.com macrumors regular

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    Dec 6, 2003
    #19
    I did something as simple as - in the Apple store I opened up iphoto on both and put them both on the same picture. They don't keeo the 20" and 24" next to each other (probably so you don't compare the screens) but I did find 2 directly across from each other. The difference was obvious. The 24" was much sharper, richer.
     
  20. zuma022 thread starter macrumors regular

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    May 18, 2008
    #20
    iPod Touch accessories

    sorry, please ignore, I'm a noob.
     

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