iMac mid-2010 Vs iMac mid-2011

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by YanivZ, Sep 26, 2016.

  1. YanivZ macrumors newbie

    Oct 22, 2011
    I'm buying my parents an old iMac and see options (in a local second hand site) for both iMac mid-2010 and mid-2011. Looking at the specs the big difference is i3 and i5 respectively. I rather buy something that will be as future proof as I can within the budget. Am I OK with the 2010 or rather put extra $ and buy the 2011?
  2. TheVisitor macrumors newbie

    Apr 3, 2014
    -between those 2, I'd go with the 2011 if it's within budget. The 2011 with I5 has a quad-core processor (vs dual I3), a faster video processor probably more VRAM that's GDDR5 vs GDDR3, and also offers 1 Thunderbolt port (vs just a mini-display port on the 2010).

    -Thunderbolt could allow you to buy a Thunderbolt dock for some extra expansion if you really wanted to (like adding USB 3.0 ports), though even a bit more money maybe you could get a 2012 model which offers built in USB 3 ports
    -so long as you get a 2012 model with at least 8 gigs of RAM (the 2011s were the last model with (reasonable) user replaceable RAM) The 2012 loses the Firewire port though, so you'd need a dock/adapter to connect any Firewire peripherals
    -I recently bought used, and for me it was the toss-up between a 2011 or 2012 - re: RAM, whether I would miss the Superdrive, and USB 3.0 - I went with the 2012 for the USB 3 and being 1 more model year better (and the guy was throwing in the Apple external Superdrive :D)

    everyman comparison page between 2010 and 2011 model years:
  3. YanivZ thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 22, 2011
    Thanks TheVisitor for the detailed answer. Much appreciated!
  4. jaduff46 macrumors 6502


    Mar 3, 2010
    Second star on the right....
    I own the 2010 and have been happy with it. Between the two, I'd do the 2011 for reasons outlined by TheVisitor and would certainly do the 2012 over the 2011 if you don't need the FireWire (which I have never used).

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3 September 26, 2016