Life of a iMac

Discussion in 'iMac' started by fat daddy, Nov 18, 2008.

  1. fat daddy macrumors newbie

    Nov 18, 2008
    Hello. I am new to this forum and new to macs. Well i am actually so new, I don't even have one yet. I think I have most questions answered but was wondering two things. I tried to search for my first question but didn't find a answer. Of course maybe I didn't search correctly, so if this has been beaten to death, I'm sorry.
    1. How long of a life do you think I would get with a iMac? I know no one has a crystal ball ( maybe you do ? ). No can say for sure, but in general? Not how long before they die, but how long before they are considered outdated? If they are like my PC's, they never die, just get to old. I seem get about 5 years on a PC before I feel a upgrade is needed. More or less the same for the iMac?
    2. This one I didn't search and the answer is probably somewhere. Here it goes anyways. I understand Time Machine saves to a hard drive. I can have it save to a external hard drive. But can it share the hard drive? Can I say partition it so 250 gig goes to Time machine and 250 gig goes to store music etc?
    Thank you for your help.
  2. Sky Blue Guest

    Sky Blue

    Jan 8, 2005
    What happens if that Hard drive fails? You'd lose all your files and your backup.
  3. dukebound85 macrumors P6


    Jul 17, 2005
    5045 feet above sea level
    i have an imac from 2000 still kicking as well as an emac from 2003

    its not really a question of when they die but when they become too slow for your needs and you WANT to upgrade lol
  4. Big-TDI-Guy macrumors 68030


    Jan 11, 2007
    The main purpose of Time Machine is to have a redundant copy on another physical drive - so in the event of a physical failure - you have something to fall back on.

    You can partition the 2nd drive, and assign Time Machine to one partition, and use the other for whatever you please.

    I would imagine the iMac would last as long as any PC. Being realistic here - the hard drive and ram can both be upgraded or changed. Outside of that - it is what it is. But to be realistic - when was the last time you made any major changes to your PC years down the road? Usually - by the time a major advance comes along - your motherboard, or power supply are out of date - and you'd need a new computer anyhow.

    They might even last longer - because they use lower power components (similar to laptops) so they produce less heat, this means less air (and debris / dust) passes through the system. On top of that, mobile processors have a higher tolerance for heat, because they're designed for smaller spaces and less airflow.
  5. coriantan macrumors newbie

    Nov 18, 2008
    Life of a mac

    as mentioned, the life of a mac will depend on how long it is fast enough for your personal preference.

    The recomended time to buy is shortly after a hardware update, then buy the best you can afford. It will then last at least as long as any PC will, barring some unforseen major hardware upgrade.

    If you look at the hardware specs of a Mac vs a PC, the Mac LOOKS to be behind. The truth is, Apple actually utilizes the hardware given, where a PC usually doesn't.

    As for Time Machine utilizing an external HDD, Yes, you can partition the HDD and use 1 partition for storage and 1 for Time Machine. But you need to be aware that for full functionality, you will want quite a bit more HDD space for Time Machine than you have HDD space on your computer.
  6. MacBH928 macrumors 68030


    May 17, 2008
    I had a similar question

    I have flat panel 17 imac which i bought by the end of 2002, I am wondering how long more life does it have specially the LCD...what is its expected life?

    The system is still going strong and the only need to upgrade is for running top games and professional apps. The only thing I can complain about is i would like it to be a bit more snappier.

    in contrast a later acquired thinkpad is having much trouble
  7. Big-TDI-Guy macrumors 68030


    Jan 11, 2007
    Considering your average consumer LCDs have warranties around 3-5 years, I'd guess at least that.

    The backlight will fade / color shift over time and eventually fail. But odds are good other components in your computer, as well as it's practical usability (in terms of processing power), will have long since passed. (by the time your LCD dies)
  8. fat daddy thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 18, 2008
    Thank you

    Thank you very much for your replies. Its a big help. I am not so much concerned with when the iMac will stop working. I am more concerned when it will become obsolete. Would a iMac bought in 2004 run Leopard? I bought the PC I am using now early 2004. I did get a free new Dell last year with Vista. That one went to my daughter. Its true, I have never upgraded a PC, I just buy a new one. I am going with a iMac this time not so much because I don't like Vista. It actually seems ok to me. Its just that its not the change I was hoping for. I want something different.
    Thanks for the Time Machine answer. I guess with the price of hard drives being somewhat cheap, getting a dedicated one for time machine would be ok. I have backed all my music and pictures on DVD's as well. My pictures are actually backed up twice and a set are at my parents. Thanks again for the help.
  9. Big-TDI-Guy macrumors 68030


    Jan 11, 2007
    Yes, an iMac purchased in 2004 would be able to run Leopard no problem.

    Snow Leopard on the other hand (the next OS due out in 2009) could be a different story.
  10. 2Sticky macrumors regular

    Mar 4, 2005
    Well I have bought a top spec iMac which is sorta replacing my iBook G4 which I have had for 4 years or so, although I will still be using just for internet browsing and emails when I'm not at the iMac.

    Depends what you will be using it for, I can still run photoshop and stuff on my iBook but after 4 years it was time for an update. If I was just using it for emails, internet and word processing then I could have kept going with the iBook.

    So my point is yes they will last 4 years+.
  11. bengal85 macrumors regular


    Oct 22, 2008
    I macs will last a while it depends on if you take care of it or not getting it updated, getting virus protection and keep the sysytem its self safe.) I have never heard of any one that has had a problem with an Imac

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