New Gaming iMacs? Apple's entry into Gaming MArket?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by dingdongbubble, Jul 16, 2007.

  1. dingdongbubble macrumors 6502a

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    #1
    With all those amazing games (including C&C 3, Carbon, UT3 and Gears of War) announced for the Mac and a delay in the iMac update and the release of the new Core 2 Extreme Mobile, my guess is that Apple roll out a new iMac or desktop Mac for gaming.

    Apple's move into the gaming market could also suggest a console later on, maybe when the next gen Xbox and PlayStations will be rolling out. It could be that Apple teams up with Nintendo or even Sony and take on their arch rival, Microsoft. Nintendo because of their intuitiveness and the Wii's design, colour etc which looks quite Apple-ish.

    I just cant understand how Apple expects us to play games on the current iMac. Maybe that is another reason why they havent upgraded the graphic card for quite some time. This move into a gamer iMac could lower Mac prices, lowering the 'expensive' tag that Apple products have.

    Another possibility is that Apple will release a mid-high end system with screaming graphics, bringing out another product line apart from the iMac and mac pro. Maybe we will see the current iMac trend to continue as normal and Apple releasing a new line up like the G4 cube for gaming.

    The G4 Cube was a shrink of a high end system and we need something with the power of a MAc Pro. Maybe Apple will do the same and get something like a shrinked Mac Pro like earlier. They could put in desktop processors and components only that it is shrinked.

    An HP Media Centre m8120n costs around $1150. It has 3 GB RAM, a quad core and 640 GB HDD. The only thing missing is the high end graphic card. If HP can do this then surely Apple can too. The MAc Pro has a quad core so to do the 'shrink' thing they would need a quad core.

    The whole gaming Mac would cost around $2000-3000 with maybe two or three 'levels' like the current systems. It would be very similar to the Mac Pro but it would follow the G4 cube's strategy and make something small and upgradeable. Another reason for the small G4 Cube design would be portability for LAN parties.

    Apple's move into the gaming market is not something small or a small little deal. IMO it is a big strategic move. Uptill now I recommended a Mac to EVERYONE except gamers. This move will change that and it should cover up the market gap in Apple's products.

    What is your opinoin?
     
  2. GWN macrumors newbie

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  3. nlivo macrumors 6502a

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    #3
    i dont think they will try anything like the g4 cube...apple has learnt from their mistakes.....i do think apple will be entering the video gaming (console) market in the next 12 - 18 months....i reckon its about a 70% chance they do that......
     
  4. Erasmus macrumors 68030

    Erasmus

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    #4
    The way I see it, Apple could try the cube again, and it would succeed. To see why, we have to see that the old cube failed because it was too expensive. It used the parts of the higher end machines, and so was as expensive as one, but was not as fast. Therefore, people either went the cheaper option, the iMac, or paid a little extra for a much bigger and faster Powermac tower.

    Today, with Intel, Apple seems to have three options. The first, what Apple is using a lot of, is the mobile products. They are expensive, and not very fast, but they are very miserly on power. All but the Mac Pro use this. The Mac Pro uses the workstation parts, with the Xeons. These are very expensive (RAM is so expensive) and very fast, and suck a lot of power.

    The third option, which Apple has completely shunned so far, is the most appropriate for gaming. Low cost, high speed all round, moderate power requirements, the Desktop versions of the Core 2 Duo architecture could be used. Conroe CPUs are much cheaper than similarly clocked Meroms (think half the cost) and go to much higher clock speeds, plus quad cores.

    I see no reason why Apple couldn't push out a 2.66 - 3GHz Conroe gaming box with maybe the option of quad core processors as well. It could have the best graphics cards, possibly more than one, and still be quite small. I would expect that Apple could fit a quad core Kentsfield, a fast hard drive, 2 GB fast RAM, and two of the highest end graphics cards (8800GTX sorta thing) in a reasonably small box. And it should be still much, much cheaper than a Mac Pro. And would not encroach on Mac Mini sales, or Mac Pro sales. It would impact on iMac sales, though. It would hopefully fit between the iMac and the Mac Pro.

    Or, Apple could go the Apple TV way, and release it as a gaming box, as opposed to a computer. Then it would not affect iMac sales.
     
  5. Mac.Jnr macrumors member

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    #5
    Erasmus 2 8800GTX in a small case? Are you insane? I'm not trying to be rude but that is not possible. The 8800 GTX are big and require a great amount of power.

    They should just put a desktop processor into the iMac and a half decent graphics. Maybe an e6600 or a e6700 and a 8600GT/S, I think thats more reasonable. I'm not saying that there is no chance of what you say happening but that's not going to be cheaper than a Mac Pro.

    If it's $2000-$3000, i don't think it's going to sell well. Also I'm not really exicted by the games coming out for Mac, I could just run them already using Bootcamp and get better performance although the release might people time because they don't have to reboot but I don't mind. :)
     
  6. dingdongbubble thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #6
    We have to remember that Apple can use multi threaded OpenGL. We saw that it actually utilized the two cores and it out performed Windows Xp while playing WoW.

    A gaming box IMO would be the best otion like the AppleTV. Maybe Apple will not release anything new machine and leave it on us to get the games to work and later on get a console out when there are many games. Maybe the new iMacs will have some serious graphics like the HD2600 Pro or the 8600GT.

    The iMac is certainly not a gaing Mac and wont last long enough. We NEED a MAc with the ability to upgrade components. At the same time Apple needs to keep a difference between the Mac Pro and the gaming Mac. Todays games do not benefit a LOT from processors as they do from graphics cards. So Maybe to create a gaming Mac and keep it different form the Mac Pro, they will put it slower processors which games do not NEED but professional DO.

    Apple's best option IMO would be roll out a gaming console which can run games that a normal Mac can too.
     
  7. jamesi macrumors 6502a

    jamesi

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    #7
    apple already tried entering into the console war, and despite introducing online play with the pippin it still bombed. gaming imac....hmmm id like to see it but it seems like offering a gaming computer that you cannot upgrade (video card at least) would go against the intentions of most pc gamers. if they offered a gaming imac, it would need a pretty strong video card to stand the test of time
     
  8. Red-red macrumors 6502

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    #8
    A gaming mac would sell a shed load. I am a gamer at heart and the only reason I post on the PC I am is because of games. I am waiting for the new imac to see what they do with it but I think I will buy one anyway I am just hoping they stick a decent graphics card in it.

    For Apple to do a gaming machine imo it would be great if it could follow down the imac route and that is how I think they would make the most money out of it as a Screen and computer in one deal. It would maybe be a bit bigger then the imac and definately more expensive ( Look different, a bit more "meaner" ) but not make it upgradable. Now most gamers including me say "waaaaaht" to that BUT apple would not make money from it if they didn't. As if for example they released a system that was upgradable and didn't have a screen people would buy most parts from third party company's, I know I would, why pay X amount for a screen when you can go buy X ( without the apple ) for cheaper? It would become a glorified PC running OSX.

    Another thing that would make it a lot more appealing ( both a gaming mac and I am hoping the new imac ) is that they give the screen a HDMI input so you can hook up your PS3/360 and use the screen. Specially for a student, you don't exactly have much space so having a 24" imac that doubled up as a screen for your 360 would be great.
     
  9. zero2dash macrumors 6502a

    zero2dash

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    #9
    Umm...never gonna happen.
    1) GTX's (as MacJnr. said) are very large, require ample power, and produce a fair amount of heat.

    2) Cost (lowest price I see) $539 a piece. That's over $1k for the graphics cards alone.

    And you expect a system such as this to be put in a small enclosure (poor ventilation and minimal room) and sell cheaper than a Mac Pro (base of $2199)?

    Umm....no.

    Apple will not produce a gaming machine because it's a niche market, even moreso in the Apple world which doesn't have half the games that the Windows PC market does.
     
  10. Mac.Jnr macrumors member

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    #10
    zero2dash Agreed! I don't understand why people are so hyped about EA producing a couple of games for mac. I can't see a "gaming" mac selling well. Gaming has always be a windows thing and it will stay that way until more people use Apple computers.
     
  11. evs macrumors newbie

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    #11
    totally agree with the last two posters.

    the biggest obstacle that i see for a "gaming mac" is that it will completely screw the mac pricing. a gaming mac would need to sit between the imac and the mac pro - both in terms of specs and in terms of cost. no gamer is gonna fork out that much cash for a machine, regardless of whether it is upgradeable or not, when they can get the PC equivalent for a third of the price. apple can't price it close to the PC equivalent because then the rest of the mac range looks hugely overpriced (which in some respects it is).

    IMO, there is no room in the console market for a fourth player. the only scenario I can see if them doing a partnership with nintendo. I don't really see that happening either.
     
  12. zap2 macrumors 604

    zap2

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    #12
    Apple tried to get back into gaming....and there all star game was bought my MS....Halo!


    But IF Apple ever enters the gaming market....I'd bet it would be a device like AppleTV...or in other words, a video game console....but that would take massive amounts of start up cash. And to fight MS/Sony in graphic, Apple would need to take a lose on hardware....and to fight Nintendo, plus MS/Sony......they would need to get amazing devs, with a new way of interacting with the system....or buy some studios.

    Anyway, gaming is a market Apple should stay out of IMO.
     
  13. Erasmus macrumors 68030

    Erasmus

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    #13
    OK, it would be difficult for Apple to do, because they would have to make their own motherboard, but if Apple made a 4 inch high box that was 12 inches deep and about 8 wide, they could have the whole front an air intake, and the rear the exhaust. Two 8800's side by side would probably take up a third of the case, with the other two thirds for 4 RAM slots, a hard disk, a quad core processor, and the power supply unit. I believe this would be possible. It would be expensive and the fans would probably make it loud, but it would be damn fast.

    I'm basing these estimations on the cube that is in front of me. People fail to realise that out of the 8" cube, most of its internal space is taken up by the passive cooling system. If Apple had used fans, it would probably be half that size. And I believe that for the day, the hardware was pretty fast and hot.

    I don't see why there is a real issue with how much power the graphics cards use. If the air comes straight from outside to cool the GPU, and then goes straight outside again, the heat is gone. If the air is 40 or 60˚C, it doesn't really matter.
     
  14. Killyp macrumors 68040

    Killyp

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    Jun 14, 2006
    #14
    Apple should bring back a product to replace the Cube IMO. The MacMini is really a very different concept. The Cube was expensive yes, but it was one heck of a machine. Plus the ability to put whatever graphics card you wanted in there was a good capability.

    Something similar with iMac specs, but upgradable graphics would be a fantastic product, I'd buy one and an ACD in a heartbeat.
     
  15. zero2dash macrumors 6502a

    zero2dash

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    #15
    It's still a small enclosure.
    eVGA's GTS is 9" long, GTX and Ultra are 10.5".
    If the enclosure is 12" deep, that leaves 1.5" for the IO shield and backing, in addition to the area up front of the card where the PCI-e power cable plugs in.

    And you're also not taking into account that these cards require some good power; GTS's require a 400watt psu, GTX and Ultra specify 500watt. Running in SLi, you'd need a whole lot more power, and that's only counting the graphics cards. More power/higher end power supply, there's more heat output.

    Something like this would not work in a small enclosure. Cards like these put out too much heat, plus they're double height cards because of the HSF meaning two in SLi would take 4 expansion slots in the case.

    eVGA mentions 4.376" high. x2 gives you almost 9" tall, in a tight squeeze. Based on your wish list, they wouldn't fit. ;)


    It's not possible in a case that size. Everything would overheat. That's too little room, not enough airflow. Retailers and OEMs build 'tight squeeze' computers, but I cannot imagine ever seeing Dell or HP try to squeeze this much into a case that size; they'd never do it. It'd be a mid-tower at least.

    No.
    Not compared to what you're talking about putting in a case that size now.

    G4 450/500 & ATi Rage Pro 128...those are measly power and heat requirements.
    Quads (like the Q6600 I plan on buying soon) are 2.4ghz...5-6x more clockspeed than that G4.
    Hell I don't even plan on overclocking my Q6600 much (just the free 25% bump by upping the FSB to 1333 on a P35 motherboard...giving me 3ghz) but I still plan on chucking the stock Intel HSF in the trash and putting on either a Tuniq Tower or an Arctic Cooling Freezer Pro 7.

    Not counting airflow, the components would not fit in a case that size. You're trying to fit a square tinker toy in a round hole; it isn't going to work. :D

    As for power, I already touched on that.
    I seriously doubt Apple would put a 1000 watt PSU in their computers. Highly doubt it. Power supplies that high (or running in tandem to achieve wattage that high, like in the Antec P190 case) cost a lot.

    Sorry man...;)
     
  16. Shadow macrumors 68000

    Shadow

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    #16
    *Cough*MacPro*Cough*
     
  17. dingdongbubble thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #17
    How about bringing out something just like the Cube being in between the Mac Pro and iMac. And pputting in average components that are less than the Mac Pro. With that they should put in a decent desktop graphic card that dosnt draw too much power but perform well. Now for the tricky part. In order to keep up the 'upgradeability' but keep it different from the Mac Pro, Apple should release 'proprietary' components for the new Cube with a long delay before updates. In this way the Mac will be able to play games decently, but will be less versatile than the Mac Pro.
     
  18. gamerz macrumors 6502

    gamerz

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    #18
    I don't think that apple will go back to the cube. What they should do is put real components in the imac, and add a decent video card. They don't need a whole new line just to play games on when the imac can do that just fine with how it is now, so if they upgrade it, there is no reason to complain, and for apple to make a new line of cube's.
     
  19. zero2dash macrumors 6502a

    zero2dash

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    #19
    Certainly they could fit a 1000 watt in a Mac Pro case, but it's not cost-feasible, just like it's not cost-feasible to put two 8800GTX's inside a Mac Pro either. :p
     
  20. DoFoT9 macrumors P6

    DoFoT9

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    #20
    i wonder if apple will actually change the iMac case. i mean if they are going to put quad core in, put a desktop GPU in, they are going to need a good power supply thus needing to change the whole case!!!! i hope they do!!
     
  21. zero2dash macrumors 6502a

    zero2dash

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    #21
    I thought I had read something lately about Quad notebook cpus coming out shortly...at least one model... which will require less power and produce less heat.

    Couple that with a notebook gpu which also produces less heat and uses less power...upgraded/updated iMacs are not out of the question. But an iMac running an 8800 card (or two) is out of the question. ;)
     
  22. Spikeanator6982 macrumors 6502

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    #22
    i think the mac pro DOES have a 1000 watt psu.

    Brad
     
  23. Royale w/cheese macrumors 6502a

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    #23
    That would be pretty cool, but I doubt would ever happen.
     
  24. Shadow macrumors 68000

    Shadow

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    #24
    The Mac Pro does have a 1000 watt PSU in it :)
     
  25. mathwhiz90601 macrumors 6502

    mathwhiz90601

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    #25
    Because of Bootcamp, Macs are like a different kind of PC, ERGO whether more games run on Windows or OSX is moot. The only comparison that needs to be drawn is hardware and price.

    I think the most likely choice is to enable the iMac to be a gaming machine, with a better graphics card that is upgradable.

    I also had a cool idea: iMacs are expected to come out with a new kind of case soon. What if they put the PSU not in the computer/display, not in a brick, but in the base for the computer/screen? BAM: the most heat-producing space-taking component completely separated from the other components to air on its own. How's that for an idea?
     

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