iMac Specs?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Treebeard3, Oct 30, 2013.

  1. Treebeard3 macrumors newbie

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    Oct 30, 2013
    #1
    I'm looking to buy a late 2013 27 inch iMac. I want to upgrade the processor to 3.5GHz, the ram to 32GB and the graphics card to the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780M 4GB GDDR5. I would just love to gain what your opinion is on how this computer would run ? I intend to study Architecture at Uni next year, so I'll often have a lot of editing software open and also would like to have a computer that can run games nicely.

    Opinions would be awesome, every friend of mine I try to talk to will reply with nothing but 'get a PC with Windows'.
     
  2. elithrar macrumors 6502

    elithrar

    Joined:
    May 31, 2007
    #2
    It will run very well?

    (tell us what software you use. We have no context otherwise, beyond the fact that you're buying a top-end iMac that can compete, performance-wise, with nearly any other high-end consumer PC).
     
  3. Treebeard3 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Oct 30, 2013
    #3
    well currently on my 13 inch macbook pro (late 2011) it can hardly cope with photoshop CS6 and illustrator CS6 running at the same time. A complex model within google sketch up can render my laptop useless for 15 minutes as it tries to load an object. The only thing I'm slightly impressed with it is it's ability to play games at bearable quality, but I'd absolutely love if that could change as well (but I'm no hardcore gamer)
     
  4. kaellar macrumors 6502

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    Nov 12, 2012
    #4
    Do yourself a favor - get i7 780m 512gb SSD 8gb RAM instead and then put third-party RAM into it. You'll get better spec'd machine at almost the same price. Apple's RAM pricing is ridiculous.
     
  5. Treebeard3 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Oct 30, 2013
    #5
    hmm yeah especially here in Australia!

    how does a computer like this compare to some of the 'hackintosh' computers that people are making for the same price? I don't really want to give up the streamlined look of the iMac, but if I can get a computer that is going to run considerably better I think i would start to lean towards building my own
     
  6. Tanax macrumors 6502a

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    Stockholm, Sweden
    #6
    What type of games do you intend to play? The 780M may be overkill for you.
     
  7. Deadeyeshark macrumors regular

    Deadeyeshark

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    #7
    The best way to go about this is simply to max out the iMac within your own budget. If you intend to keep this iMac a number of years then future proof it as much as you can. Don't just consider what you need the iMac for today, maybe down the line you'll be doing something more intensive.

    I do agree with the earlier poster who suggested buying the RAM from a third party, otherwise go max it all out if your budget allows.
     
  8. Tanax macrumors 6502a

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    #8
    Of course most people will probably do something more intensive down the line - the question is what type of things, how far into the future and how much power you need for those things.

    In 3 years time, the performance need of applications won't increase THAT much so I definitely think most people can make do with a 775M instead of the 780M. It'll still be future proof enough. But again, without knowing what OP will be doing that is really GPU-demanding, it's hard to say which GPU he should get.
     
  9. Treebeard3 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Oct 30, 2013
    #9
    Thanks guys !
    I'd be intending to play games like Elder Scrolls Online and stuff like that. Also I could imagine I'll be playing around with Cinema 4D and programs like that.
    I really appreciate the suggestion of a third party RAM, and I am definitely one to fiddle around and customise stuff, but I think I would rather go safe with this one and just buy it off apple, especially since my parents will be giving me some money for it.
    I think if you guys are thinking that some of these specs on the iMac might be a bit of overkill that's definitely wiped the idea of a 'hackingtosh' out of my mind. I think I'll just try and save up and max out as many settings as possible :)

    Thanks for the help !
     
  10. Deadeyeshark macrumors regular

    Deadeyeshark

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    England
    #10
    I would disagree. The iMac I bought previously was a 2008 24", maxed out processor, memory and graphics, with a then hefty 500GB hard drive. It is still a good computer and I have no intention of selling it, but it chugs along slowly when throwing even iMovie at it, Aperture is like a lame dog, and the hard drive seems tiny now.

    My new i7 blazes through iMovie, Aperture performs as it should and my whole Home Sharing set up seems a lot more responsive. As Apple keep improving their hardware and software it's best to have a computer that can keep up with the pace of change, I did that in 2008, only recently have I noticed it was starting to lag.
     
  11. Treebeard3 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Oct 30, 2013
    #11
    So then would you say that maybe my $3500 could be spent better on making a customised computer that runs osx, so that in the future I can upgrade parts ?
     
  12. Deadeyeshark macrumors regular

    Deadeyeshark

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    #12
    I have looked at a Hackintosh previously, having built many PC's before it was a route I did consider. However, my understanding is you leave yourself a little open for the system to fail when Apple pushes out future updates for OSX. It maybe more stable now, and someone else could better advise.

    I have confidence in Apple that the prebuilt iMac has the best quality components and what is there not to love about the design aesthetic? I personally wouldn't go for a Hackintosh, but if you think that fits your need better then go for it, just make sure you don't spend thousands of dollars on a machine you can't update.
     
  13. Tanax macrumors 6502a

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    #13
    2008 was 5 years ago (!!). Almost double of what I was talking about, which was 3 years life-span. I realize some people might want to keep their computer for that long, 5 years, but I also think some people just want to have the latest tech and feel the need/urge to upgrade in about 2-3 years time, regardless if their computer feels slow or not.

    If they upgrade within 2-3 years, there's not many casual applications that will get outdated and feel slow in that short time - meaning their upgrade was for nothing. Again, this is based on casual use, not professional or prosumer use.
     
  14. yjchua95 macrumors 604

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    GVA, KUL, MEL (current), ZQN
    #14
    I have a maxed out 27" just like what you wanted, but the only thing I didn't max out was the hard drive (went with a 512GB SSD, because the processor, memory and graphics upgrade, AppleCare plan, and another 21.5" maxed out iMac did me in).

    Well, for the average user, this configuration is overkill, unless you're someone in the media production/photography line. I process a lot of RAW images from my EOS 5D Mk3 and that's where the 3.5GHz processor comes into play. It just converts so fast.

    Photoshop and FCP X also perform bloody well on the 27". Can't say the same for FCP X on my 21.5" iMac though.

    Meanwhile, the 4GB of graphics is useful if you're going to want to play games at ultra high settings. But other than that, and the performance it gives in videography-related work... 2GB of graphics will suffice if you don't intend to do any of this.

    ----------

    Well, the 13" MBPs lack a discrete graphics card, so you can forget about gaming or Photoshop on a 13".
     
  15. Deadeyeshark macrumors regular

    Deadeyeshark

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    #15
    Surely though, if you were the kind of buyer that wanted the latest tech, and you had the budget to go for it, you would go for the very best you could buy? Just wanting the latest tech isn't based on needing that tech or making use of it, in the same way you would never need a six litre engine over a three litre engine in your car, but people do, it's human nature to want the very best.
     
  16. Tanax macrumors 6502a

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    #16
    Wanting the latest/newest tech != wanting the best/most expensive tech.
    If I know I wouldn't need more than the 755M, I'd go with that and just upgrade the entire iMac in 2 years when the 755M feels old/too bad for me and I'll get a 2 year newer graphics card than if I would've gone with the 780M. Surely 2 years of technology advancement will outperform the current 780M.

    But, the tricky part is knowing if you'll need more performance than the 755M during the next 2 years or not.
     
  17. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

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    May 19, 2002
    #17
    Hmmm....

    For university next year, I'd probably wait til next year with the incremental updates, if you don't plan on getting another machine til you graduate.

    Maxing out a 4 year investment next year, might not be a bad idea, making it a 5 year purchase might be pushing it.

    For $3.5k, that is within spitting distance of a Mac Pro and a non-Apple monitor, which might make 5 years slightly easier with more RAM thrown at it in a couple years -- though the new GPU upgrade, is a question waiting to be answered.
     
  18. Deadeyeshark macrumors regular

    Deadeyeshark

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    England
    #18
    I would agree with this. My 2008 iMac is still a good computer and runs perfectly well under Mavericks, but the minute I throw Aperture or even iMovie at it, it creaks, but when I first purchased this Mac those Apps ran blisteringly fast. Now on my i7 the difference is hugely noticable. It's only in the past year or so I've noticed the 2008 mac start to struggle.

    I'm going to put money on my current config lasting at least 7 years. (a maxed out 27" with 24gb)
     

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