imac or powermac? please help!

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by toaster_oven, Aug 30, 2005.

  1. toaster_oven macrumors regular

    Jun 7, 2003
    not sure
    ok- i'm in the market for a new mac - and i'm planning on making my purchase relatively soon (within a couple weeks)...

    i had owned an ibook before it tanked a few months ago... it was definitely not enough for what I used it for (I use 3D rendering software, CAD, and adobe products on a regular basis). I am currently using the PC... but, I also own a bunch of graphics editing software for mac only (specifically the adobe suite), otherwise I'd be fine with this computer until the intels come out next year...

    so... my thoughts are:

    imac would serve the short-term problem, won't take up a ton of space, and won't break the bank... the down-side is I can't really expand it, I might have to upgrade to a new system in a year - I'm a little worried that it won't be able to handle what I would like to use it for...

    the powermac is better for what I do on a daily basis, more power, more RAM... longer term investment though - and might be obsolete in a year... currently i feel like this will be good for me to get sometime next year, sell the imac, and get the intel powermac (maybe then AutoCAD will be available for the mac)... so i might as well go with the cheaper imac... unless someone can convince me i'm headed on the wrong track... i'm thinking i'm going to get the imac.

    anyone else use the same type of software on an imac? what are their thoughts? are people pretty happy with the imac in general?



    (I have the PC for AutoCAD, Rhino and 3D studio... If I could run this software on OSX, there would be no doubt that I'd get the high-end powermac...)
  2. lfielder06 Guest

    Dec 5, 2004
    Why do people think that powerPC based macs will be obsolete in a year? g5 PowerPC machines will still be more powerful than intels running rosetta for things. The Powermacs will probably be the last thing updated to intels. If you wait until October you could get a dual processor with 2 cores per processor which is an awesome set up. Wait a month then get the powermac it will last you for years to come, and you will have the one of the sweetest set up out there for close to two years. 99% of the users on these boards will be very jealous too. :p
  3. nagromme macrumors G5


    May 2, 2002
    A G5 iMac with 1GB RAM or so is no slouch and will stay useful for years--and as you say, you can then get an Intel PowerMac late next year that will blow away anything on the market today. I'd go that route--spend less now, more later.

    But it's a personal call. A PowerMac now could easily last you into 2007 and beyond, so you'd end up getting an even BETTER Intel Mac... but later.

    I lean towards the first plan--go Intel sooner rather than later--because you should be able to use your Intel Mac to run your Windows stuff too. Apple may not officially support running Windows, but I bet somebody will. Probably Microsoft, with a new version of Virtual PC.
  4. toaster_oven thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 7, 2003
    not sure
    thanks for the comments...

    hmmm... maybe i wasn't clear enough... when I said "obsolete" i meant that i'm hoping that because of the switch to intel, i'll be able to run all this *currently* windows-only software on the mac (meaning that maybe autodesk will finally port autoCAD to OSX - the last version they had for mac was v12 before the switch to the PPC processors... it's now 6 versions later. yes i know there are other options for mac, but everyone uses AutoCAD or Microstation - both PC only... plus there are several good 3D rendering software packages currently only available for PC - like rhino and 3D studio... and I'm hoping that these will be ported as well after the switch to intel)... hence the waiting until later to buy the high-end computer. I know that the powermac will last me a while... but if there is any difficulty with backwards compatabilty after the switch (things like VPC run better on next-year's macs or, god-help-us... just windoze) then I'm leaning towards waiting.

    what I really want to know is has anyone experienced any problems running high-end graphics, or 3D rendering software on an imac? if I can get away with the imac, then i will go that route. Money is actually an issue for me, but I don't want something that will be frustrating to use.

    thanks again...

  5. GimmeSlack12 macrumors 603


    Apr 29, 2005
    San Francisco
    There you said it! Get the iMac. I always watch to see if someone has an issue with money before advising on an iMac or PM (generally everyone). The iMac is a great machine and economical to boot. The G5 would take care of your work efficiency better, but they are expen$ive. Even the iMac will be a fast machine and if you really decide to buy an Intel then you would not have spent as much money on a current Mac.

    But I will say that a G5 PowerMac now will last you at least 3 years. Sure Intel is coming, but what does that matter? Say those come out in a year, well 6 months after that there will be a faster MacIntel, and in 2 years there will be a faster one, and so on and so on. The waiting game can last for forever.
  6. toaster_oven thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 7, 2003
    not sure
    well... gimmieslack, cost was a factor - and i ultimately got the imac. One day I will get the powermac, but i'm still very excited (and nervous) about my purchase.

    woo hoo! by the end of this week i will have a new computer! now i can finish my portfolio!

  7. Artful Dodger macrumors 68020

    Artful Dodger

    May 28, 2004
    In a false sense of reality...My Mind!
    toaster_oven, Hi, you can run Rhino on an iMac but the only thing I haven't seen is autocad (in person that is). The one Apple sales guy near my house runs a bunch of stuff on his 20" iMac and keeps his .Mac site up when at work to show just what can be done (3d/2d).
    So you should be very happy and hey you saved some money for now until later...enjoy your new Mac ;)
  8. Moxiemike macrumors 68020


    Jan 1, 2002
    Pittsburgh, PA
    don't be nervous. i had an imac g5 at a place where i was doing a marketing consultancy and it hit every nail on the head perfectly. this was the 1.8 17" too, so i can only imagine how good the newer ones are.

    get gobs of ram, 1gb minimum, and you'll be in love. also, LaCie external hard drives will be a nice addition, and you'll have 'em when you get your PowerMac.

  9. wdlove macrumors P6


    Oct 20, 2002
    I think that you will be very pleased with you new iMac. What model and specifications did you purchase? Hopefully you purchased extra RAM an AppleCare. Just relax and enjoy.

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