iMac 27: i5 or i7 if you need less heat/noise?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by maxap, Oct 21, 2010.

  1. maxap macrumors 6502

    maxap

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2008
    #1
    Hey guys,

    I am thinking of ordering a new iMac 27 inch, but don't really know which processor to choose: i5 (2,8 Ghz) or i7 (2,93 Ghz). I know all pros and contras of both processors except one: what about the heat produced by those and thus noise of the fans?

    i7 870 http://ark.intel.com/Product.aspx?id=41315
    i5 760 http://ark.intel.com/Product.aspx?id=48496

    As far as I know, max TDP of both processors is 95W and they are both based on the 45nm technology. So, in theory they must be equal in their heat production. However, I still read complaints of some iMac owners, who state that their i7 machines are extremely hot (and the fans are spinning quite badly).

    Can anyone shed some light on this issue? Shouldn't I worry and just go and order the iMac i7 (which is, of course, more futureproof)?
    Please, elaborate on that!
     
  2. uuaschbaer macrumors regular

    uuaschbaer

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2009
    #2
    My i7 is as warm as a sweaty handshake, and the fans only start spinning when converting a video, rendering a complicated and large frame with Maya or when it's an extremely hot summer's day.

    *By "start spinning" I mean, of course, that they start spinning extra fast.
     
  3. maxap thread starter macrumors 6502

    maxap

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2008
    #3
    Thank you for your comment, that's nice to know... I hope more people will react....
     
  4. iDutchman macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 9, 2010
    Location:
    Amsterdam, NL
    #4
    Heat issues and loud fans?

    Hell no. My iMac 2.93Ghz i7 runs as smooth as I could imagine. No heat issues and the fans are dead silent. Even if I play games like Formule 1 2010 or anything like that I still barely notice an increase in fan noise. Of course it gets warmer in those situations, but nothing to worry about. I'd go for the i7, no doubt.:D
     
  5. X1Lightning macrumors 6502

    X1Lightning

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2007
    #5
    the only noise i get from mine is the HDD when i am rendering, and the top by the vent gets hot, but just keep your hands away from it and there is no issue
     
  6. chris650 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2010
    #6
    I am in the same boat --either i7 with 4850, or i5 with 5750, which would you go?

    What's the real life difference between core2duo and quad core??? Under what kind of circumstances or task will it make a difference?

    Given the same price, would you go for Quad Core i5 with 1GB vram or Quad Core i7 with 0.5 GB vram?
     
  7. maxap thread starter macrumors 6502

    maxap

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2008
    #7
    So, guys, should I go for the i7 or i5? Any ideas?
     
  8. George Knighton macrumors 6502a

    George Knighton

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2010
    #8
    I was facing the same decision and went with a refurbished i7, for the increased processing power, cost savings with refurbished, and better chance that the reason it was refurbished was to solve the monitor whine.

    :)

    My refurbished MacBook Pro is quite solid, so I am confident in the purchase.

    The only thing that worried me at all was the 1 TB hard drive. The first thing I did with my MacBook Pro was put a Vertex 2 drive in it, which has worked out well. I'm afraid I won't like the speed of the stock 1 TB drive, but having looked at the instructions for replacing the drive, I know that I will have to leave it alone.

    On the other hand...I'll have lots of room for that full Windows 64-bit installation that I know I will have to utilise for that one odd Windows application that my team can't get away from. After putting Windows on the Vertex 2, the 40 GB partition doesn't have a lot free.

    The iMac reviewers I've been watching do not seem to have heat issues with the i7 beyond the system's design parameters. There aren't that many heat complaints (relatively speaking) beyond everybody's warning not to block the top vents.

    There are also few complaints about the monitor whine (relatively speaking), but if you do have that problem it's hard to solve without returning the unit for a refurb or replacement. And if you're satisfied with the out-of-box brightness, colour and resolution, you won't even know that there could be a problem.
     
  9. maxap thread starter macrumors 6502

    maxap

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2008
    #9
    Yes, but I noticed that some owners of the i7 iMacs had higher temps of the CPU: 3-5 degrees more (Celsius). Considering the fact that the i7 processors have the Hyper Treading technology on board, it is quite logical to assume that they will get hotter resulting in higher speeds of the fans.

    If you take a look here: http://www.marketingtactics.com/Speedmark/ , the i5 version of the iMac seems to win the battle in almost every test.

    I think I don't really need those additional 0,52 Ghz (0,13 Ghz x 4) and the HT technology, which normally result only in 5-10% more productivity in daily tasks and only 25% better performance in optimised applications. In my view, the i5 processor is more than enough for the things I am going to do with my new iMac: web browsing, text editing, sound/photo/video editing and occasional gaming (Left4Dead2 on Steam).

    Do you agree with me?
     
  10. TMRaven macrumors 68020

    TMRaven

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2009
    #10
    I say get the i5. Regardless though, it's never a good reason to not get the i7 if you're worried about 3-5c difference in temperature when running at its highest.
     
  11. George Knighton macrumors 6502a

    George Knighton

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2010
    #11
    I understand your reasoning, and I can agree with you that based on what you have said it seems logical for you to pick the i5.

    :)
     
  12. MythicFrost macrumors 68040

    MythicFrost

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2009
    Location:
    Australia
    #12
    The i7 actually boasts around 30% more performance (IIRC) (real world) if you make use of those four additional virtual cores; HT is present in both the i5 and i7 models, the i7 just turbo boosts slightly higher because of the slightly higher clock speed.

    Just thought I'd mention that :p (I did notice you said 5-10% in your daily tasks, so I guess you know this, but just in case) :)
     
  13. TMRaven macrumors 68020

    TMRaven

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2009
    #13
    i5 lynnfield doesn't have hyperthreading, while i5 clarkfield and arrandale do have hyperthraeding. I'm not sure about clarksfield. Bloomfield consists of all i7s.

    Intel's naming is strange, yes.
     
  14. MythicFrost macrumors 68040

    MythicFrost

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2009
    Location:
    Australia
    #14
    Oh my bad, I'm thinking of Turbo Boost not HT! -.-, yeah, the i5 2.8GHz doesn't have turbo boost.
     
  15. TMRaven macrumors 68020

    TMRaven

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2009
    #15
    No the i5 lynnfield has turbo boost. :(

    i5 lynnfield and i7 lynnfield both have turboboost; i5 lynnfield has no hyperthreading while i7 lynnfield has hyperthreading.
     
  16. MythicFrost macrumors 68040

    MythicFrost

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2009
    Location:
    Australia
    #16
    Lol... I'm really confusing myself now, I meant the i5 doesn't have hyper-threading LOL. i5/i7 quad-cores both have turbo boost, i5 doesn't have HT, i7 does -- there! haha :)
     
  17. beerglass007 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 13, 2008
    #17
    Hi

    What does these 2 things do ?

    I've just upgraded from a C2D 21.5" 3.06GHZ 2009 to a 27" i5 2.8 2010 and find it flys.
     
  18. TMRaven macrumors 68020

    TMRaven

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2009
    #18
    Hyperthreading is the cpu tricking the operating system into thinking the cpu itself has twice as many cores as it has (in this case 8 vs 4)

    Turboboost is the cpu overclocking itself if it needs to.
     
  19. beerglass007 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 13, 2008
    #19
    Thanks mate...

    So I don't really need HT with my i5..

    Must say i'm liking the screen size a little more now. The dead pixel isn't a problem.
     

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