iMac graphic designer set up

Discussion in 'iMac' started by apples&bananas, Dec 25, 2007.

  1. apples&bananas macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2007
    #1
    Hi, I'm ready to graduate college and I'm looking for an ideal graphic designer's configuration for an iMac. I don't want to spend extra money on hardware that I don't need, so I'm looking for some advice on the CPU and RAM. It is a two-part question.
    I will often multi-task with programs like Flash, Illustrator, and Photoshop with large file sizes.
    Right now I primarily use a PowerBook G4 with a 1.5ghz CPU and 1gb of RAM.

    1. I can either get the 2.4ghz or 2.8ghz CPU. Is the extra .4ghz worth $250 for me?

    2. I will often be running RAM intensive programs, but is 2gb enough for now? Upgrading to 4gb is an extra $700, which seems extreme, but I may need it. Is it worth the money now, or in a year or two could I get the upgrade then for cheaper?

    Thank you very much for any help you can provide.
     
  2. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    Joined:
    May 19, 2002
    #2
    1. spend the $250 on a HD upgrade ... you will need the extra space sooner than an extra .4GHz

    2. buy the ram from a 3rd party, where it might cost you $80-100 for 2x2GB SO-DIMMs (aka 4GB for $80-100). It is easy to install. And the warranty from a RAM dealer is a lot longer than the Apple warranty on RAM.
     
  3. Cudadown macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2007
    #3
    I dont think the change from the 2.4 to the 2.8 processor would make much of a difference. Memory though, just buy after market memory yourself. Easy to install and much much less expensive than apple's. I bought a 1 gig dimm from circuit city for 60.00. I'm sure I could have found it online for less but i have no patience.
     
  4. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    Joined:
    May 19, 2002
    #4
    I got a base 20" iMac 2.4 machine at CompUSA (before the going out of business sale announcement) and got $50 off AppleCare and a 1GB DIMM for $40.

    You can likely get twice the memory today for what I paid, but for a local purchase it wasn't a bad deal months ago -- and way less than Apple's $150 1GB DIMM.

    No reason to get the Apple memory, it is insanely priced right now. It was easy to install.
     
  5. chadrob30 macrumors 6502

    chadrob30

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2007
    Location:
    In front of my Mac.
    #5
    I'd ask around in here, surely someone can give you some hints and tips.
     
  6. bluedoggiant macrumors 68030

    bluedoggiant

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2007
    Location:
    MD & ATL,GA
    #6
    2.8ghz is the way to go, trust me, a lot of people say there is no difference between the 2.4 and the 2.8, ive tried both, HUGE difference, the 2.4 in store, the 2.8 on my desk, the 2.8 is way faster, and a totally different processor catefory, not a C2D, but a C2E, some people call it a C2dE though. multi tasking? 4 gig ram, and thats just right, anything for you, you need a high end 24" imac, 1TB HD, 2.8Ghz Core 2 Extreme, and get standard 2 gigs, then from crucial.com, but 4 gig sticks to replace, or you can get the 3rd option, upgrade processor, HD, everything except RAM, then take out the 1gb ram, but it in some other computer, and buy 4 gig sticks from crucial.com. And the graphics card on the imac isn't that great either, its good, but not awesome, not saying you need top, but i think you really need a Mac Pro. I'm sorry if thats not what you want, but if you're going pro, your going Mac Pro too, you can easily upgrade Ram without playing with your Tower, on the imac, you got flip it and BLAH, on the Mac Pro, easy HD upgrades, if you got something too much for you, sell it on ebay, you can easily take it out, the HD's are literally slide in-slide out, and the video card options are optimal, so take my word for it, i think you should wait for macworld to pass, get a mac pro with 1 gig ram, then later upgrade to 6 gig from crucial, HD, you have 4 Bays, first bay, 250, 500, or 750GB, last 3 bays, 500, or 750GB, it can total up to 3TB, but this is the current Mac Pro, all in all, i think you should shoot for the Mac Pro, honestly, dont wanna empty your wallet (speaking of that, A full powered Mac Pro can cost over $12k), but the mac pro is your best bet, plus the iMac displays are told to be "inaccurate", i dont see mine that way, but other people do, you may be one, so. Boy. Listen. MAC PRO.

    Hope this helped:eek:

    thats a good place, i forgot about those sections :(
     
  7. Rustman macrumors regular

    Rustman

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2007
    Location:
    England
    #7
    I've just bought a 2.4GHz 24" iMac and upgraded it myself to 4GB. With this I can easily run Photoshop, Illustrator and Flash at the same time. Remember, none of these programs is regularly going to be using 100% of its processor runtime. Photoshop maybe when you use filters and big brushes, but that's hardly its main use in Graphic Design. Not in my 10 years of experience anyway.

    Go for the extra power if you can afford it, but take it from someone that has been using Adobe packages for over a decade, the 2.4GHz model is fantastic and is easily the most powerful, quiet and compact computer I have ever used.

    I just wish they would patch Leopard now. It is a bit flaky still.
     
  8. je1ani macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2007
    #8
    Why does this kid go on and on about the C2E processor? IT'S NOT THAT GREAT. Check this out.. I've had it for about 3 months now and I can tell you first hand not only is a Mac Pro better than it but it flips it upside down turns it inside out rightside in outside in ***** on it pisses on it in everyway go for the Mac Pro.. Also a fully uber Mac Pro won't even cost you half of that $12k :confused:
     
  9. afallnstar macrumors member

    afallnstar

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2007
    Location:
    Seattle
    #9
    A fully built Mac Pro can easily cost over $12k if you purchase everything in the Apple store. Also the Mac Pro and the iMac are in completely different classes; the Mac Pro has the Xeon processor which is the same processor that goes in servers, while the C2DE is a desktop processor. Obviously the server processor will out perform the desktop one.
     
  10. Rustman macrumors regular

    Rustman

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2007
    Location:
    England
    #10
    I wish this debate about Mac Pro vs iMac would end.

    I can tell you right now that anyone who wishes to have a cheap and powerful setup can do a lot worse than the iMac.

    The Mac Pro costs a LOT more and still needs a display to go with the base model.

    If you've got the money, go for it, but the iMac is perfectly adequate. I've run graphic design and illustration businesses on desktop PCs and Macs that were a LOT less powerful than the current lineup of so called consumer machines, so please, don't be afraid to take the plunge for something that will fit the bill just fine for you.

    Oh... and the Mac Pro is STILL waiting for a refresh. If you choose that route give it until at least January.
     
  11. AlexisV macrumors 68000

    AlexisV

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2007
    Location:
    Manchester, UK
    #11
    For what you want to do, any modern processor above 1.5Ghz will be more than adequate. You won't notice any difference in Flash or Photoshop whether you're using a 1.8Ghz Core Duo or a 2.8Ghz Core 2 Duo Extreme.

    The 2.4Ghz is worth it if you'll ever want to play any games, purely because the graphics chip is better. Otherwise the 2.0Ghz is more than capable.

    2Gigs of RAM is also fine. 3Gb is a luxury. 4Gb is over the top.
     
  12. bluedoggiant macrumors 68030

    bluedoggiant

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2007
    Location:
    MD & ATL,GA
    #12
    did you read my full post??? you shouldn't just read on half way through it and conclude it as "this kid never stops jabbing about his 2.8!!!" if you read the whole thing, i easily pointed out that he should get a mac pro, i didnt tell him to get a 2.8 imac, i told him that was possible, but a very poor machine, and as for graphics, he needs seperate displays for his workstation, thats very rude to read half way through someones post and conclude, here is a quote, read everything in bold:


    did anyone read my lengthy post??? i SAID already it costed $12k, quote:


    Well, thats the way to go, he gets power, supreme performance, and easy upgrades.
     
  13. Techguy172 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2007
    Location:
    Ontario Canada
    #13
    Your best bet is the Mac Pro mainly because it's a workstation and it 's built for this kind of work it does it well. You see the iMac is not only hard to upgrade it can't handle heat nearly aswell as the Mac Pro and the Mac Pro has huge capacity for whatever you throw at. So buy a Mac Pro and don't look back.
     
  14. bluedoggiant macrumors 68030

    bluedoggiant

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2007
    Location:
    MD & ATL,GA
    #14
    my point, the imac would be a terrible choice, and also, another thing, im repeating this, the display is said not to be great, my imac gets really hot, but never over heats, my airport is on 144* daily, and sometimes as high as 147* F, my HD stays at a constant 137*, i wonder how how hot it would be to touch the actual thing, the Al is already burning:eek:
     
  15. AlexisV macrumors 68000

    AlexisV

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2007
    Location:
    Manchester, UK
    #15
    A Mac Pro would be overkill for a grad student. Using Photoshop and Flash would be no different on a Mac Pro than on an iMac.

    I fail to see the relevance or accuracy in statements such as 'it can't handle heat nearly aswell as the Mac Pro and the Mac Pro has huge capacity for whatever you throw at.'
     
  16. Rustman macrumors regular

    Rustman

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2007
    Location:
    England
    #16
    The average newly graduating student does not have the money for a Mac Pro.

    I drive a Nissan Micra. It does the speed limit and it gets me and my stuff where I need to be, safe and dry.

    Sure I could get a Car of the Year on credit, but I would still be stuck in jams, spending more money on petrol, insurance and road tax (and repayments + interest). But at least I get to sit in luxury and bang on about how wise I was to buy something that effectively does the same job as my underspecced Micra.

    To each their own, but saying that the Mac Pro is the "only" way to go is frankly untrue and misleading.

    Oh... and I'm certainly not comparing my lovely iMac to my crappy Micra. ;)
     
  17. eyemacg5 macrumors 6502

    eyemacg5

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2006
    Location:
    Derbyshire, England
    #17
    Maybe if you wrote in paragraphs people could read it.

    Also I would say upgrade the ram from a 3rd party. Use external drives if you need more storage.
     

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