Need advice on buying an iMac

Discussion in 'iMac' started by TexasCoder, Jan 9, 2012.

  1. TexasCoder macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2012
    #1
    Hello, new member here... :)

    I am thinking of switching from windows to mac. I am looking at buying an iMac for the simple fact that it is an all-in-one unit.

    I will be using my iMac primarily creating YouTube videos (using Final Cut X), Photoshop, email and web surfing...and here's another gotcha...Microsoft .NET development. I will run parallels with windows7 and visual studio. Other than windows/visual studios, everything else will be done on the mac (YouTube, Photoshop, email, web surfing...everyday stuff).

    Here's my question, I have found a few 2009/2010 models on eBay and craigslist list that are within my 1500 budget, and I would like to be able to max out the ram to 16GB, and install an SSD drive, and I would assume that a 1GB video card should handle what I need it to do, or would you recommend the 2GB video card?

    But that is why I am here, there are tons out there that sport the i5 and i7 processors, but nothing with an SSD drive...is it possible to install an SSD on the 2009 and 2010 models? From what I have read, the biggest pitfall is the fan speed going nuts over the temp stats not being presented by the SSD S.M.A.R.T firmware, but there seems to be a settings app out there to handle that portion.

    Also, would a 2009/2010 model handle what I need it to do, or should I continue saving for a while and get a new model? Although, I really want to move over to the iMac, I am in the position of needing to replace my current PC rig (its going on 7 years), and instead of spending 1500 on new PC hardware, I would rather move over. Using my iPhone and iPad for the last two years has really persuaded me to make the move.

    Thanks again for any help/suggestions you can give me. I hope to be able to contribute to this forum, instead of being a one post guy.

    Kind Regards,
    TexasCoder
     
  2. rkaufmann87 macrumors 68000

    rkaufmann87

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2009
    Location:
    Folsom, CA
    #2
    You should continue saving in order to buy an iMac with the specifications you want. Apple considers the only user upgradeable part to be RAM, anything else is complex and not designed to be done by the end user. Considering budget is a consideration then I would recommend you shop on Apple's Refurbished site. In the USA that address would be:

    http://store.apple.com/us/browse/home/specialdeals/mac

    Check often, the inventory can change from hour to hour. You may not find precisely what you want but you may be able to come close.
     
  3. robgendreau macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    #3
    I actually like some of the older iMacs precisely because they are more user-servicable, assuming you have moderate tech skills (i.e. can handle small screws and fiddly cables, but short of soldering). The latest models have issues even apart from taking them apart in that aftermarket parts may not work (RAM excepted). Since drives fail more often than other parts, that's a plus IMHO. Check ifixit.com to see if it's something you could tackle.

    You are stuck with the model's video card; those are not swappable.

    One way you might save a little is to go with the smaller screen and use an external monitor; might get you enough $$ to add more RAM.

    And definitely look at refurbs; there's an iMac sitting there right now for under $1500.
     

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