iMac for programming purposes (i5 vs i7)

Discussion in 'iMac' started by sweetpot, Jun 29, 2017.


Which version suits best for presented problem?

  1. 1: i5 7600 KL 3,5GHz/ RP575 / 512 SSD

    11 vote(s)
  2. 2: i7 7700K KL 4,2GHz / RP575 / 256 SSD

    1 vote(s)
  1. sweetpot macrumors newbie

    Jun 29, 2017
    Purposes: Web/sofware development, mostly Java(InteliJ) and Swift(xCode), some virtualization of gnu/linux distro (2 machines max) with multiple java, docker processess and databases intsances(nosql and sql db) besides of that some frontend developments and of course some home-office work. Speaking of GPU, up to 2 extrernal monitors (Full HD res / 2k res).

    Question: which of iMac 2017 5K version will be the best, having best price ratio to power, overheat of CPU and fan volume?
    (don't bother about RAM, I will get as much as I need)

    1: i5 7600 KL 3,5GHz/ RP575 / 512 SSD
    2: i7 7700K KL 4,2GHz / RP575 / 256 SSD

    I was reading a lot about current year iMac versions and I've decied to do not consider the i5 7600k 3,8GHz due to overheating problems but I am not sure if i7 7700k has the sam problems? I really dont want to make my iMac fans turns on, on every non low processor time cost jobs. Moreover I am not sure if 256SSD would be enough for the task that I've mentioned because I would also want to make periodic backups of the vm's and have some space for private files. What to do :)?
  2. throAU macrumors 601


    Feb 13, 2012
    Perth, Western Australia
    Get the version with 512GB SSD.

    coding you spend most of your time in an editor. You will appreciate the space more.


    Sure the i7 will be faster when CPU bound, however most of the time you just won't be CPU bound...

    Yeah compiles will maybe take a little longer but it won't be a huge thing. Running out of storage will be.

    Even with the VMs you run, as development/test they will spend 99% CPU idle most of the time...
  3. macsplusmacs macrumors 6502

    Nov 23, 2014

    With respect, i stopped reading at 256 SSD. i think your choice should be between your processors and that BOTH choices should included the 512 SSD.

    I mostly do what you do. I have a MacBook 2014 with a 512 SSD. i was shocked to realized i only have 80 gigs free. and have not done bootcamp which is what i will do with my just ordered iMac 2017.

    If you are going to keep this for more then a couple of years, I highly rec the 512 SSD at least.

    >>>r the i5 7600k 3,8GHz due to overheating problems but I am not sure if i7 7700k has the sam >>>problems?

    I went back and forth. forth and back for 10 days. like you, i did not want fans, but i don't have an answer for you since mine has not arrived yet.

    But at the end of the day I said. Screw this. more power. longer lasting mac, better resale value. It seems like the i7 on the 2017 is not as bad as the years before.

    will find out in a couple of weeks.

  4. trsblader, Jun 29, 2017
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2017

    trsblader macrumors 6502

    May 20, 2011
    I think you have them backwards. The i7 is the one that has the potential fan noise. There is quite a large thread going ( with a whole lot of opinions, suggestions, and real world test cases from people doing everything from surfing the web to massive audio and video projects

    No one can really answer this for you. Take a look at how much you currently use, how much you expect to increase and see if 256 is enough. Even with a windows VM, I use about 150gb of space on a regular basis, but you may use triple that. I clean my machine up of useless files every couple weeks though. For my workflow, if I haven't touched a file in 2 weeks the chances I go back to it in the future is pretty slim with exception of a few web and other projects, so they go on an external backup and get deleted from my machine. I will say though, if you're trying to make backups on your main drive, that's a bad idea. One of the points of the backup is in case your main drive fails and if your backup is on that main drive you've now lost your backup. Backups should be on another external drive.
  5. michaelsviews macrumors 65816

    Sep 25, 2007
    New England
    I5 with 256 and look for a refurbished iMac for a savings

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