iMac 21.5" Base i5+SSD OR 21.5" BTO i7?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by rupnok, Jun 9, 2011.

  1. rupnok macrumors member

    Jul 22, 2002
    I am a hobbyist/amateur photographer, and am mainly interested in Aperture 3 for RAW photo file management and post-processing. I will likely also be doing some DVD ripping & Handbrake encoding, as well as H.264 video editing (footage from a Canon T2i), however mainly the iMac will be used for Aperture 3.

    I am torn between:

    (1) Buy a base 21.5 iMac 2.5GHz i5 and up it to 2TB WD Black Caviar HD and add a 120GB Intel 510 SSD (a local Bay Area AASP quoted $70 for labor); add 8GB RAM aftermarket for 12GB

    (2) Buy a BTO 21.5 iMac 2.8Ghz i7 with 2TB HDD; add 8GB RAM aftermarket for 12GB

    What will serve my needs better - the fast SSD as main drive on the slower i5 for Aperture, or the i7 for occasional DVD ripping/Handbrake/H.264?
  2. SPBMacintosh macrumors newbie

    Jun 7, 2011
    The only thing the i7 will boost is dvd ripping times and the exporting of your videos. The ssd would make the system act amazingly, which i why i say get the base model + SSD + external HDD for your media. Seeing as you'll be putting 12gb of ram in, video editing speeds won't be much different on either of them [​IMG]
  3. iSayuSay macrumors 68040


    Feb 6, 2011
    Wow .. $70 for SSD installation labor is quite good. I'd say go with SSD. You'd amazed how SSD increase computer performance. Look at MBA. Even Core 2 duo can do that. Imagine what SSD would do in intel i5 :D
  4. Orlandoech macrumors 68040


    Jun 2, 2011
    Salt Lake City, UT
    i5+SSD for sure! Makes for processing big RAWS and opening Photoshop a breeze!
  5. rupnok thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 22, 2002
    So what I hear people are saying is that the SSD will provide more "responsiveness" to me than merely having the i7?

    My question is then - how do I get the most of out the SSD - do I set upload all my RAW images, process them, and then keep the reference library on the SSD and the originals on the HDD?

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