new iMacs and graphics processors

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by coldwater456, Oct 20, 2009.

  1. coldwater456 macrumors newbie

    Oct 20, 2009
    I'm really curious of some opinions on the differences between the two 21.5" iMacs: NVIDIA vs. ATI graphics processors. What are the benefits/pitfalls of each? I'm not a gamer, but I do use some scientific graphics programs occasionally (data visualization and molecular rendering), for what it matters. I have had poor experiences with my current MacBook (2007) with the Intel shared memory graphics processor, namely: some seemingly minor graphics jobs like a 2-3 minutes youtube clip heat up the CPU and the fan kicks in heavily and annoyingly. I don't know if I can attribute the heating up to the shared memory setup or not, but I'd really like to avoid a similar problem in a new iMac. So, which 21.5" iMac should I get?!?

  2. Ace134blue macrumors 6502a


    Sep 17, 2009
    Depends, what are you planning on doing with it>?
  3. RogueVasion macrumors regular


    Nov 23, 2008
    "...but I do use some scientific graphics programs occasionally (data visualization and molecular rendering)..."

    I also would like to know, but my graphics card use isn't for science programs, since I am a business major (i just need my microsoft office, lol). I just like knowing what I can run and how well it can run, haha! :p
  4. dukebound85 macrumors P6


    Jul 17, 2005
    5045 feet above sea level
    lol you will be fine

    im an engineer with a 3 yo mb with a mb with a gma95o and i havent had problems doing anything non game related
  5. coldwater456 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 20, 2009
    all of the basics: email, web-surfing, Microsoft Office, no gaming, and then some occasional ported unix programs and visualization.

    Maybe an ancillary question is: is the NVIDIA processor with shared memory junk?

  6. Peace macrumors Core


    Apr 1, 2005
    Space--The ONLY Frontier

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