iMac BTO which is which?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Escritor, Feb 19, 2014.

  1. Escritor macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2012
    #1
    Hi Guys,

    I will purchase a high end 21.5" imac with the dedicated graphics card

    i have an extra for 1 upgrade

    I am just wondering which would be best to upgrade

    from i5 - i7?

    or

    1TB Fusion Drive or SSD?

    or

    from 8gb to 16gb ram?

    I will primarily use it for

    1. Basic office and school works (web browsing, microsoft office, adobe photoshop and a little bit of video editing using imovie)

    2. DOTA 2 and Diablo 3

    basically it is going to be for work and gaming
     
  2. ElectronGuru macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2013
    Location:
    Oregon, USA
    #2
    The ram is tricky since it cant be upgraded later, but id still say:

    ssd
    ram
    processor
     
  3. tomwvr macrumors regular

    tomwvr

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2012
    Location:
    Frederick Maryland
    #3
    21.5 ram cannot be upgraded - if you think you will need the ram then that is first
    Fusion Drive in my 2012 BTO 27 inch is as fast as an SSD


    Tom
     
  4. yjchua95 macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2011
    Location:
    GVA, KUL, MEL (current), ZQN
    #4
    What's the exact read/write speeds?

    Here's from my 21.5" (256GB SSD)
     

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  5. IA64 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2013
  6. sahni130 macrumors 6502

    sahni130

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2008
    Location:
    Atlanta, Georgia, United States
    #6
    Sorry to interrupt but is there any way you can share that wallpaper!?

    OP, definitely upgrade ram as it is incredibly hard for most people to upgrade later. You could alays get a Thunderbolt SSD external drive to boot from down the road if you want quick app launches, etc.
     
  7. tomwvr macrumors regular

    tomwvr

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2012
    Location:
    Frederick Maryland
    #7
    The thing with the Fusion drive - is this test won't show the speed correctly - with the fusion drive - the software uses the SSD portion to run programs that are frequently used on the SSD. So doing a read/write test on a fusion drive will only show the 7200 RPM HD I think.


    Tom
     
  8. Macman45 macrumors demi-god

    Macman45

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2011
    Location:
    Somewhere Back In The Long Ago
    #8
    SSD for sure...DON'T pay Apple prices for RAM, it's an easy DIY job and you can buy the extra RAM later. the SSD will give you the biggest "Bang for your buck" In terms of performance...Faster boot times and app loading.
     
  9. Escritor thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2012
    #9
    I just noticed that nobody recommended the processor from i5 to i7?

    or i5 is more than enough to handle most softwares/applications nowadays?
     
  10. Macman45 macrumors demi-god

    Macman45

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2011
    Location:
    Somewhere Back In The Long Ago
    #10
    Yes. I have the I7 purely for two apps that take full advantage of it...X-Plane and Logic...Most of the time in daily tasks, you aren't going to notice a difference...I do a lot of Handbrake stuf as well as heavy photo work and Logic..My specs:

    27" Imac
    I7 3.4GHZ
    2GB 680M GPU
    32GB RAM
    3TB Fusion drive

    The large SSD was not an option when I brought my new Mac. neither was the 4TB GPU...I'd have both next time around.
     
  11. yjchua95 macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2011
    Location:
    GVA, KUL, MEL (current), ZQN
    #11
    Here you go :)

    It's 2880x1800 to fit my 15" rMBP, but it fits nicely on both my 21.5" and 27" iMacs too :)
     

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  12. sahni130 macrumors 6502

    sahni130

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2008
    Location:
    Atlanta, Georgia, United States
    #12
    Thanks!
     
  13. DeltaMac macrumors 604

    DeltaMac

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2003
    Location:
    Delaware
    #13
    I fully agree about SSD.
    However, don't be misled - upgrading RAM in a recent 21.5-inch iMac is not "an easy DIY job", compared to a 27-inch model.
    Some folks even posted earlier in this thread that it can't be done, and that is also inaccurate.
    27-inch has a RAM access panel on the back, and is that easy.
    21.5-inch requires slicing the case open, and you should review an online video before attempting it. Here's one that will show what is involved: http://blog.macsales.com/15932-what-does-it-take-to-upgrade-a-2012-imac-21-5
     
  14. SaSaSushi macrumors 68040

    SaSaSushi

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2007
    Location:
    Takamatsu, Japan
    #14
    Upgrading RAM on the 21.5" iMacs most certainly is not an easy DIY job, since it requires disassembling the machine. It's doable but by no means does it classify as easy.

    The PCIe SSD speeds of the new iMacs are indeed impressive as you can see by the screenshots provided above. However, the truth of the matter is that you really don't need 700MB/sec+ read and write unless you're doing professional video editing, in which case you probably wouldn't be using that machine anyway.

    I got my Late 2013 27" iMac with the 1TB Fusion Drive because that's what fit the budget at the time. Now I am about to buy a 500GB Samsung 840EVO SSD and put it in an $18 Inateck UASP USB3 enclosure. I expect to get upwards of close to 400MB/sec read and write. When the prices of Thunderbolt enclosures come down, I can always grab one and pop the SSD into it.

    The point is, you've got a lot of excellent external SSD options with the new iMacs. It's not nearly as easy to upgrade the RAM in the 21.5" iMac

    As for me, when the AppleCare runs out in 3 years, I plan to open up the machine and replace the 128GB PCIe blade SSD. By then I expect the prices to have dropped considerably.
     

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