new imac video card questions:

Discussion in 'iMac' started by jkaz, Aug 9, 2007.

  1. jkaz macrumors 6502

    Feb 3, 2004
    Upper Mid West
    i've been following this topic since the keynote on tuesday.

    question #1:

    can the new imac only use laptop video cards?

    question #2:

    the new imacs are offering an HD line of radeons, is this radeon's first lineup of HD?

    question #2.2: is this HD line split into laptop and desktop models?

    question #2.2.2: are they the same?

    question #3:

    does nvidia offer an HD lineup that will work in the imac?

    question #4:

    what are all radeon and nvidia video cards that could have been offered in tuesday imac update?

    thank you
  2. capran macrumors member

    Nov 28, 2003
    Well, this is a hard set of questions to answer, because Apple is using an essentially proprietary connection, thermal management system, and size/space.

    If it used a standard PCI-E slot, then this would be easy. But seeing as the iMac uses MXM (I believe), it's not meant to be user-upgradeable, and the internal arrangement and design of the case probably has very specific requirements for the electronics.

    2006 iMac 24" used a desktop 7600GT GPU, though. And I believe the Radeon X1600s were also the desktop versions instead of laptop versions.

    Apple chose the 8600M for the newer MBPs, when there used to be 1600Ms, must be similar power draw and heat dissipation. So maybe that gives a clue for the iMac that the power/heat characteristics of the new 2600 Pro is similar to the 7300GT/7600GT.

    So, maybe they could have gone with the mobile 8600 GT, but chose the ATI instead because perhaps the 8600GT desktop part draw too much power or made too much heat?

    On the other hand, both the 8600GT and GTS are available in heatsink-only fanless boards for PCs.

    Bottom line....I have no idea why they went with the ATI! :p
  3. jkaz thread starter macrumors 6502

    Feb 3, 2004
    Upper Mid West
    does anyone know what the radeon advantages are in the High Def department?

    what video card line for nvidia has the equivalent?
  4. I'mAMac macrumors 6502a


    Aug 28, 2006
    In a Mac box
    Nope X1600 were mobility :( not sure about the 7600's but my guess is they were. But yes, i do think they could have gone with the 8600M which is still a possibility. It only came out 2 days ago or whatever.
  5. Pleiades macrumors newbie

    Jul 26, 2007
    Pacific Northwest
    For high-def, the nVidia 8600's are the equivalent. I think Apple chose those two (nVidia 8600 and ATI 2600) with the thought of eventually having the ability to play HD video, like Blu-Ray or HD DVD even though the drives are not included. Both types have special decoding chips that are specifically geared towards high definition video and even surpass their more expensive brethren, the ATI 2900 and nVidia 8800 GPU's when it comes to playing back video. Those other cards are geared more towards gaming.

    With Apple's eye towards the home entertainment hub, it makes a lot of sense for them to choose them. As for why the ATI 2600 over the nVidia 8600, I don't know. I'll bet that with the drivers Apple uses, they'll be pretty comparable in performance. But we'll have to wait for the benchmarks.

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