new Imac / gaming

Discussion in 'iMac' started by electricdreams, Jun 3, 2011.

  1. electricdreams macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2008
    #1
    looking at any model and or BTO, what would be the best option now

    please specify if the 1vs2 Vram is a good choice,

    thank you
     
  2. Georgio macrumors 6502

    Georgio

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2008
    Location:
    Essex, UK
    #2
    I went with the i7 3.4 GHz shop bought, the GPU was faulty (or I knackered it playing Wow) took it back and ordered the 2GB version which so far has been absolutely superb.
    Ok so it's not a pro gaming rig but for 'most' gaming needs the iMac more than fullfills their needs, especially as in my case where I use the iMac for both work and play.
     
  3. alust2013 macrumors 601

    alust2013

    Joined:
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    Location:
    On the fence
    #3
    If you're into really high end gaming at max settings and full res on the 27", the 2GB would probably be a good idea, otherwise, the 1GB would be fine.
     
  4. GrantMeThePower macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2011
    #4
    If you're looking at "any BTO, any option" i would say get it all!

    2GB video card, upgrade the ram to 16gb once you get it, and why not get the SSD while you're at it
     
  5. cluthz macrumors 68040

    cluthz

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2004
    Location:
    Norway
    #5
    16GB is overkill for gaming, even 8GB is overkill for most games, also RAM is cheap to upgrade later.
     
  6. electricdreams thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2008
    #6
    sorry, not planning to get ram from apple

    is going more than 4 gigs that good
    all my previous imacs had no more than 4, so I never tried going more
     
  7. GrantMeThePower macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2011
    #7
    I didn't mean to order it from apple. And 16 gb really is most likely overkill. But you get the 4gb in two sticks, so what I did was add another 8 (2x4gb) for a total of 12. I think thats the sweet spot right now.
     
  8. Bear macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2002
    Location:
    Sol III - Terra
    #8
    Depending on what else you have open, you'll likely find that 4GB is a bit constrained for gaming. I'd say either get a 4GB or 8GB memory kit from whatever vendor you prefer to install in to the iMac you buy.

    Also, for gaming? 2GB VRAM option.

    Also, remember most game designers don't design these games on minimal systems to run well on those systems. They tend to use recent machines that are fairly well configure then design the game to run well on those systems.
     
  9. electricdreams thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2008
    #9
    >? saying what, top end imac is still not anywhere close to a real gaming pc?
     
  10. Bear macrumors G3

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    Jul 23, 2002
    Location:
    Sol III - Terra
    #10
    Nope, saying you should get the VRAM and memory upgrades.
     
  11. electricdreams thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2008
    #11
    other users that current have a new 27 inch high end imac, hows your gaming experience,
     
  12. mrfoof82 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 26, 2010
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #12
    Most games on my 27" (fully loaded, memory upgraded to 16GB myself) ran perfectly at 1920x1080 with all the settings cranked up. 2560x1440 was doable for most games at High settings.

    There's a thread regarding overclocking if you search for it, in which even Crysis 2 and Metro 2033 were able to average 40-43fps at 2560x1440 at very high settings.

    Yes, you will get better frame rates in Windows 7 than in OS X. The gap is closing, but it's still there. Additionally, the drivers that are bundled with Boot Camp are considerably older than what is currently available from AMD. You can always upgrade them yourself, and worst case, fall back to the Boot Camp-bundled drivers.
     
  13. iSayuSay macrumors 68030

    iSayuSay

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2011
    #13
    Talking about VRAM ...

    I'd suggest go with 1GB VRAM .. and this is coming from a person who owns 2GB VRAM (Ironic ain't it)

    I compared Crysis 2 gaming on my iMac with Youtube videos and other numerical data .. and I can see nothing special comes with my 2GB VRAM .. same FPS, same smoothness, not exactly same .. but you get the point. It's not essentially better than 1GB VRAM, not even slightly.

    For what it gives, this 2GB VRAM should come standard or at most cost $25 instead of $100 on hi-end iMac .. 1GB is still plenty even for multi monitor setup. Double the VRAM doesn't make your FPS doubled, not even 1% higher for most of times. Almost like you pay extra $100 for nothing.

    This 6970M will yield before it fills up the 2GB VRAM, so having 1GB VRAM is the best bet, even for gaming or multi display setup. Yeah many people here would say "it's only $100 upgrade, go for it, you can afford $2000 computer, what a $100 means?" .. but for that $100 I could get RAM upgrade, decent gaming mouse or AppleCare auto-enrolled to my iMac. Even for Mac user, every $$$ should count :)

    I bet Mr Georgio there got unlucky with GPU on his previous iMac with 1GB 6970M .. but I think he'd get same experience with 2GB VRAM IF only that iMac wasn't defective
     
  14. qzxyu macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 7, 2011
    Location:
    Anaheim, CA
    #14
    this is gonna sound really funny, but.. I dont play computer games, but in high school I played counter strike. I would be keen on playing again, doess the base 27" have good enough specs for good game play?
     
  15. electricdreams thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2008
    #15
    would the top end imac handle all current demanding games? maybe at high setts, I can live without Ultra if that fps is way too low
     
  16. reclusive46 macrumors 65816

    reclusive46

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2011
    Location:
    Canada
    #16
    Yes for now. In 2 years time? No. Its just good enough for the next year or two to be able to manage all the games on decent settings.
     
  17. DJJAZZYJET macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2011
    #17
    vram is useless unless you have multiple displays running. I did lots of looking into it and its what these companies do to try to con you, its like this card has 1gb, but this card has 2gb, meaning the 2gb must be better, when in actuall fact its not. An i5 with a 1gb graphics card vs an i7 with a 2gb graphics got a higher framerate in a test, i dont have the website for you so i cant really prove it, but its on the forums somewhere. If you dont plan on running multiple displays, 1gb ram should be fine, but if you have the cash to spend, the 2gb will help slightly with those over the top crazy graphical games (im wanting to say crisis 2, but the 1gb would be able to handle that and the 2gb wont really make alot of difference, maybe 1 or 2 frames. Plus upgrading the graphics card wont future proof you either, the 6970 is a good graphics card but will be underpowered in the future, meaning all that vram will be useless. I was going to get 2gb but after i researched it was a waste, so i spent the money on getting 8gb more ram (4gb x 2 ram chips) for 60 quid and installing them myself to use up the imacs 4 ram slots. That gives me a total of 12gb, which is the sweet spot, so you will never have to much, but you will always have enough. Plus when lion comes out it will have a new version of that opencl or somthing, meaning better framerates etc, and when amd releases some new firmware of the graphics card that will make it slightly better, so dont worry about it to much and just think relistically. Also, if your planning on upgrading to an i7, let me tell you that i7's hyperthreading hurts games, and becuase the i5 is 3.1 (3.4ghz in turbo boost mode) and the i7 is 3.4 (3.6 in turbo boost mode), that 0.3 ghz difference isnt going to do very much at all, and considering that 3.1ghz is screaming fast, the i5 is a great choice. If you want speed, put an ssd in your imac, save yourself from upgrading the processor and graphics card and use the money for an ssd and extra ram which you should install yourself, an ssd would definatly increase the performance of games more than a 2gb graphics card would. Hope this helps.
     
  18. turbobass macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 25, 2010
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #18
    I have the base (cheapest, lol) model 2011 iMac.

    It plays Source games great -- your L4D2, your TF2, your Half-Lifes. It plays WoW great. It rocks the house at Minecraft (lol).

    That said, I have just recently dropped around $1.5K on all tippy top of the line PC components to build my own new gaming rig. Meaning, for the price difference between the lowest and the highest iMac specced out for gaming you can literally build a top of the line gaming PC. I would strongly recommend you do that -- you're going to need to install Windows on your iMac if you want to get the most out of the hardware anyways.
     
  19. T'hain Esh Kelch macrumors 601

    T'hain Esh Kelch

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2001
    Location:
    Denmark
    #19
    I have the top model with 3.4 Ghz i7 and 2 GB VRAM. For what it is worth, it plays WOW smooth as butter at max resolution 2560x1440 on ultra settings. The only places it skips frames are when flying, and that is due to the slow harddrive. I'll upgrade to an SSD when they come down in price.
     
  20. MacHamster68, Aug 3, 2011
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2011

    MacHamster68 macrumors 68040

    MacHamster68

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2009
    #20
    if you are happy with up to 60fps then go for the BTO top spec!
    but if you are serious about gaming and want to enjoy up to 300fps and more
    get a alienware area 51 ALX max it out and enjoy all fps displayed on 2 dell U3011

    buying a iMac for gaming seems like getting a ferrari enzo for the shopping and school runs , looks pretty and will manage , but is essentially not really fit for the purpose , a compromise like all AIO computers
    the area 51 alx is made with one purpose in mind and thats gaming..
    ok it would not be my choice because of a intel processor , but some like intel
     
  21. turbobass, Aug 3, 2011
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2011

    turbobass macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 25, 2010
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #21
    Mmm more like buying a BMW 745i and trying to do F1 racing with it. But, I do like the thought of your analogy.

    also dont buy an alienware for gods sakes, you can most likely build the same computer for ~$700 less. It's pretty easy, even a Mac user can do it!
     
  22. MacHamster68, Aug 3, 2011
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2011

    MacHamster68 macrumors 68040

    MacHamster68

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2009
    #22
    you could be right there , but as Mac users are only able to change ram according Apple , so the idea of a Mac user to build a whole gaming rig seems a bit ambitious :rolleyes:


    "Ambition is the last refuge of failure."
     
  23. Wreckie macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 9, 2011
    #23
    High end model does well with gaming. I got 6970m 1GB and I'm Playing games like Dirt 3 and Mafia 2 at native resolution on almost high details and getting average 40-45 fps, which is smooth.
     
  24. jonp200 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2011
    #24
    I went with the i7 27" iMac. I ordered a 8 Gig ram upgrade (2x4)from Newegg.com and added to the iMac for 12 Gigs total..

    I also went with the 2 Gig video option but didn't spring for the SSD.

    So far, I am thrilled. Everything runs flawlessly in Mac OS or Bootcamp.

    A couple other suggestion:

    Logitech G510 Keyboard for gaming (It has Mac & Windows Drivers)
    Logitech Performance MX Wireless Mouse for Gaming (Also dual drivers)
    Seagate Go Flex External Drive (Firewire) for Storage. It too works in OSX or Windows..

    Basically, when I swap to an OS, it is seamless...

    I was a PC hobbiest for years and a one-time Mac hater..(I hated integrated graphics that made gaming just not in the cards.) This is my first MAC and I have to say, I'm a convert!
     
  25. turbobass macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 25, 2010
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #25
    What's "everything"? Don't really know how maxing out RAM like that would do you any good in gaming ... forgive my skepticism but this is a thread where someone else with the top shelf model has touted being able to play WoW, a 6 year old game that plays on the lowest model iMac at full. I just bristle at the notion of paying for the top shelf vs. bottom for *gaming*.
     

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