iMac 5k r9 m290, how are games?

MikeArtworks

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jun 1, 2015
106
6
Hey guys!

I'm planning on getting an iMac. Either 21.5 inch with the 750m, or the 27 inch retina with the r9 m290 (not m290x)

I was wondering, how good is the r9 m290 in gaming? At 1080p or higher if possible.

I currently have a gtx 550 ti.

So:

Is the gt 750m better or worse than the 550ti?
Is the r9 m290 better or worse than the 550ti?

And, do you have some fps for games for me??

Thanks!
 

aevan

macrumors 68040
Feb 5, 2015
3,119
3,990
Serbia
Hey guys!

I'm planning on getting an iMac. Either 21.5 inch with the 750m, or the 27 inch retina with the r9 m290 (not m290x)

I was wondering, how good is the r9 m290 in gaming? At 1080p or higher if possible.

I currently have a gtx 550 ti.

So:

Is the gt 750m better or worse than the 550ti?
Is the r9 m290 better or worse than the 550ti?

And, do you have some fps for games for me??

Thanks!
If the difference between M290X and M290 isn't huge, then it should be quite better then 550Ti.
750M is worse than 550Ti.
 

aevan

macrumors 68040
Feb 5, 2015
3,119
3,990
Serbia
Any idea if the difference isn't huge or not?
Sadly, no idea for M290 - but it should be just a bit underclocked so I don't expect a huge difference with M290X. In fact, the M290X is slightly overclocked, so I'm guessing 'regular' M290X comes close to the M290 (Apple sets custom clock speeds) according to their needs.

The M290X in the iMac runs just like a desktop Radeon HD 7870, meaning it's significantly faster than 550Ti. In Nvidia world, it is roughly equivalent to GeForce GTX 660. So, I'm guessing the non-X M290 is somewhere between GTX 560 and GTX 660. Either way it is faster than 550Ti.

As for the 750M is roughly equivalent to the 550Ti. I thought it was worse, but after reading a bit, it seems to be similar in performance.

M290 should be quite faster than 750M.

The M290 benchmarks are hard to find because there is no M290 outside iMac world. They are basically just lower clocked M290X that Apple is using (you know how in the GPU world lower quality chips get underclocked or have less processing units and are branded with lower number) and I'm guessing the difference is not big. It's probably 900Mhz vs 1000Mhz.
 

estabya

macrumors 6502
Jun 28, 2014
430
352
The m290 should perform somewhere similar to a desktop 7850. This card blows the 550ti out of the water. You should be able to play any modern game without any problems. Don't expect to be able to crank all the settings up though. Or run it at 5k for that matter :p
 

MikeArtworks

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jun 1, 2015
106
6
The m290 should perform somewhere similar to a desktop 7850. This card blows the 550ti out of the water. You should be able to play any modern game without any problems. Don't expect to be able to crank all the settings up though. Or run it at 5k for that matter :p
Damn that's nice.

How would the 21.5 inch's 750m do against my gtx 550ti?
 

MikeArtworks

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jun 1, 2015
106
6

estabya

macrumors 6502
Jun 28, 2014
430
352
Based on what I know about GPU performance for gaming, which is all based on Windows performance, the 750m performance is about identical to the 550ti.
 

estabya

macrumors 6502
Jun 28, 2014
430
352
Also. I currently have a 24 inch monitor. Do you think I'll get used to a 27 inc iMac? Or can I better take the 21.5 inch? I do graphic design.
I'm sure you'll get used to that retina screen, and you won't want to use anything else haha. The higher quality screen (in regards to color accuracy and resolution/PPI) of the retina iMac will be an advantage for graphic design. Plus the more powerful CPU and GPU will result in better performance and faster render times.
 

slimpsy

macrumors newbie
May 26, 2015
21
3
Ohio
I have had my retina imac with r290x for about a week now and I play Dota 2, League of Legends & CounterStrike: Global Offensive all at 4K resolution on mostly maxxed out settings with more than acceptable framerates, and more often than not over 60 fps. Is it going to drive more graphic intensive modern games @ 4k? Maybe with no AA and on low detail, but it will certainly run any modern game @ 1080p with high'ish settings smoothly!
 

Serban

Suspended
Jan 8, 2013
5,160
920
I have had my retina imac with r290x for about a week now and I play Dota 2, League of Legends & CounterStrike: Global Offensive all at 4K resolution on mostly maxxed out settings with more than acceptable framerates, and more often than not over 60 fps. Is it going to drive more graphic intensive modern games @ 4k? Maybe with no AA and on low detail, but it will certainly run any modern game @ 1080p with high'ish settings smoothly!
i don't think with 290x at 4k you play those games at 60fps...i never tried with my 295x more than 1440p but i am sure i will not get 60fps at 4k (OSX)
 
Last edited:

slimpsy

macrumors newbie
May 26, 2015
21
3
Ohio
i don't think with 290x at 4k you play those games at 60fps...i never tried with my 295x more than 1440p but i am sure i will not get 60fps at 4k (OSX)
I would be happy to show you screenshots with these running under bootcamp. League averages around 70 fps at 4k on high, Global Offensive about the same and Dota 2 around 50s. These are games built to appeal to mass hardware. Global Offensive is built on a decade old source engine revision. Good luck to you.
 

loekf

macrumors 6502a
Mar 23, 2015
620
206
Nijmegen, The Netherlands
I've checked for benchmarks, but the r9 m290 looks to be unknown everywhere?
I found a review on:

http://www.zdnet.com/product/apple-imac-with-retina-5k-display-core-i5-3-3-ghz-8-gb-1-tb-led-27/

They ran Geekbench etc. Seems like you will loose 5% CPU performance (on 200 MHz ??) and barely 2% on GPU, which is within the fault margin.. so hardly impact. I still wonder what loosing the "X" means. Guess it's a slightly lower clock, but funny that Apple still wants to use it. CPU by itself is 100-150 euro in Apple's cost model... and don't forget the 128 GB SSD.
 

jerwin

macrumors 68020
Jun 13, 2015
2,457
4,451
The major difference is the ordinary hard drive, which acts as an anchor on the rest of the system in ordinary use. The validity of the OpenGl result depens on what was tested. It would be nice to get actual numbers-- how many shaders, clocked at how many megahertz, and perhaps even things like Furmark.
 

wvuwhat

macrumors 65816
Sep 26, 2007
1,157
35
I'm looking to buy a 5k.

Will an 8gb work if I feel like upgrading to CS5?
 

Ledgem

macrumors 68000
Jan 18, 2008
1,753
506
Hawaii, USA
I'm pretty sure I'm going 5k when they have 16gb ram.
In the 5K ("retina") iMac, you can upgrade the RAM yourself. 16 GB and 32 GB options are available if you want to buy it directly through Apple, but you can save money by doing it yourself.
 

jerwin

macrumors 68020
Jun 13, 2015
2,457
4,451
In the 5K ("retina") iMac, you can upgrade the RAM yourself. 16 GB and 32 GB options are available if you want to buy it directly through Apple, but you can save money by doing it yourself.
My imac 5k comes with 2 of four ram slots filled. When and if things demand it, I'll upgrade, and enjoy not paying Apple's premium.

Most of the deals seem to be on the 2.3GHz/1 TB hard drive/m290/8 GB or the 2.5GHz/1 TB fusion drive/m290x/8 GB versions. Step outside those bounds and you limit the discounts.

Luckily, RAM is an easy upgrade.