iMac 21.5" or 27"?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by yourdream, Oct 23, 2009.

  1. yourdream macrumors regular

    Aug 16, 2008
    I am going to buy an iMac. I've never owned an iMac before. I do not know which screen size to buy. Is 21.5" too small for eyes or if 27" is too big for my eyes?
  2. C64 macrumors 65816


    Sep 3, 2008
    That's very personal obviously, and also depends on the space on your desk, and what you're going to use it for. If you need a lot of space for multitasking, or just want a nice big screen for movies... the 27" is the way to go. The 27" also gives you the option to get a QuadCore CPU, which might be useful.

    You can also go to an Apple store or Apple Reseller, and see them side by side for yourself and try them out. By next week most of them will have both in store if they don't already.
  3. ucfgrad93 macrumors P6


    Aug 17, 2007
    I have a 20" iMac and it is fine. Go and see them for yourself like C64 suggested.
  4. SmugMac macrumors regular

    Sep 25, 2009
    The new iMac 21.5 is fine, a little too small for what I want but it's a very comfortable size and resolution.

    If you have a bit more cash to spend, the 27" iMac is a dream...
  5. guitarguy09 macrumors member

    Jun 1, 2008
    "The Good Land"
    27" all the way! I'm not saying that just because I bought one. I seriously think if you are going to have a desktop computer as opposed to a macbook for example, you might as well have a REAL desktop. Not to mention, I've noticed that the screen size seems to shrink over time as you get more used to it. Plus, it's just so beautiful... too nice to pass up if you have the space and/or monetary means...
  6. rfrankl macrumors 6502a

    Apr 15, 2006
    I have the first line of 24" Intel White iMacs. I got the 24" over the 20" at the time and never regretted it...very nice. I was in the mall tonight though looking at the new ones as even though my old iMac does everything I need and well, I do like the aluminum look. The new ones are great, but I can't believe there is no intermediate size. As much as I always think bigger is better, that 27" is nice, but is also a monster. Most desks wouldn't handle it, but its pretty inexpensive for what you got for the same price a few years ago. I don't think I would be disappointed though downsizing to the 21.5".
  7. Borg9 macrumors newbie

    May 12, 2005
    Buy the 21.5".

    Once you use a larger screen there's no going back.
  8. DDave macrumors regular

    Oct 10, 2009
    I can say the same thing, but if you get the smaller one you can never go back either!!!
    I say get the most you can afford.
  9. Sir Cecil macrumors 6502a

    Mar 31, 2008
    I have the new 27" iMac in front of me right now.
    I also have 17" Macbook Pro with 24" LED Display.
    So far, I have to say I much prefer to sit in front of the LED Display than the 27". Just looks more "right" and balanced somehow. Maybe I'll get used to the 27" but it strikes me as a cumbersome-looking brute after spending a year with the Apple display. The display also "disappears" better when watching a movie, without that big slab of aluminum under the screen. And from my normal sitting distance, the display fills my vision perfectly, without the need for more inches at the side. Purely a personal reaction of course, and performance-wise, I can't say there's an immediately noticeable difference in image quality between the two.
  10. Ping Guo macrumors 6502

    Ping Guo

    Oct 5, 2008
    Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
    21.5" should be perfect for you. 27" is IMO just way too geeky to have on your desk, unless you have some compelling reason to need such a massive display. And if you did, you'd want to think twice about the shiny screen and 16:9 shape.

    I'm sure the giant iMac will sell well, but with the cinematic screen ratio and huge size, it seems more suited to the BD, HDTV, media-consuming crowd than people who actually need their computers for work. Professionals who need a large screen for editing video and photos would probably go for something matte with a normal 16:10 ratio.

    If it's going to serve as your sole display for movies, TV, media, and computing, like in a college dorm or small apt, then yeah I guess that's a reason to get it. Otherwise, keep the HDTV in the living room and a normal desktop in the office. :)
  11. tempusfugit macrumors 65816

    May 21, 2009

    Big displays are perfect for people at work because you can have so many things on the display at the same time. Definite productivity booster. Responding to emails is nicer when you can look at the message you're replying to at the same time without overlap, for example. Viewing documents while writing others is sometimes essential too.

    The more screen space, the better for anyone IMO. No such thing as overkill when you talk about the finest all in ones on the market. I love the ACD but I'm returning it (bought it 1.5 weeks ago) tomorrow and I'm going to wait a couple months and deck out a nice 27". I love my MBP but the 9400m is holding me back from editing HD video the way I'd like. Of course thats not my profession or anything, but I'm a hobbyist and I appreciate quality.
  12. plomben macrumors newbie

    Oct 24, 2009
    Using a 22" 16:10 display today. Will the 21.5 iMac look about the same size or smaller/bigger? Anyone who made that switch care to comment:)
  13. lumberjack macrumors member

    Oct 23, 2009
    Just came back from the store.
    I originally planed to buy the 21.5" but after having seen both of them side by side I went for the 27". The difference is bigger than I thought it would be. In comparison to the 27" the 21.5" looks like a child's toy.
    Also, I'm going to use a virtualizer so it's quite handy to have a big screen.
  14. C64 macrumors 65816


    Sep 3, 2008
    Do you guys think the screen of the 27" starts too high? I now have a 20" Dell where the bottom of the actual screen is about 2–2.5 inches from my desk. When you're in a natural pose you're always looking straight ahead or slightly downward, so that's why I like it to be low. The 27" iMac however seems to begin very high. Aren't you looking upwards all the time? Straining your neck?
  15. DDave macrumors regular

    Oct 10, 2009
    That will totally depend on your desk and chair height. You should be looking slightly down not a lot though so be careful.
  16. APPLEFAN8 macrumors 65816


    Jun 30, 2007
    I'm getting the 27 inch once I get enough money. I should have enough by the end of December.
  17. crhudy1985 macrumors regular

    Sep 23, 2009
    I have been saving money for an iMac for a month or so and should have enough money by March. However, I was having the same debate with the 20 vs 24 and finally decided I can afford the 24 and bigger would be better. But know trying to decide between the 21 and the 27 is a much more difficult decision. I just hope the base 27 price is lowered by spring of next year so my decision will be made for me.

    I say if you can afford the 27 and you like to watch alot of tv/movies on your computer (like me) then I would go for the 27. You most likely wont regret it and if you take it home and it is just to big after a week of using it then take it back for the 21.5. I don't know what the restocking fee will be on that beast but I doubt it would be more than the price difference.
  18. UrFatMom macrumors regular

    Mar 17, 2009
    I would go with the 27"... For the main reason that it has quad core. Even if you don't really "need it now", you will regret having a dual core next year. I wish we could get the 21" with i5 processor :)
  19. seb-opp macrumors 6502

    Nov 16, 2008
    Look at one in an Apple store for the answer. Bit of a personal question, no one on here can tell you what your personal preference is!
  20. DDave macrumors regular

    Oct 10, 2009
    I totally agree, I just went to the Apple store and was torn between the two. Now that I have played with both, I think the 27 is the best bet.

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