New iMacs - which graphics option

Discussion in 'iMac' started by leehal, Mar 3, 2009.

  1. leehal macrumors member

    Jan 30, 2009
    Been waiting a while for the new iMacs and am really confused by the graphics options.

    My main reason for buying an iMac is to replace my PC (I already have a Macbook which I love) and want to be able to play games again. My Macbook cannot realistically play World of Warcraft, therefore I would like the most economical option out of the iMacs that will play the game (and others for the next year or so, without struggling).

    Is the 9400M a decent enough card, seems an awful lot more money to upgrade from the 24" 2.66GHZ to the next models and then take up the option of upgrading the cards on top of the model price increase.
  2. leehal thread starter macrumors member

    Jan 30, 2009
    And the flip side is, if the 9400M is good enough should I go for a Macmini?

    I already have a monitor, mouse and keyboard.
  3. synagence macrumors 6502a

    Jul 23, 2008
    Any of the graphics options will handle WoW fine .... but if you can get a discrete gfx option then you'll be laughing ....

    The 130GT and 4850 are by far the best 2 options but costly
  4. mrklaw macrumors 68020

    Jan 29, 2008
    9400M is a fine card - check out the macbook/mbp forums for comments about gaming on them, as the new imac/mini are similar architecturally (although strangely have shared graphics)

    9400M will play WoW fine.

    I'd be tempted with a mini if you have a good monitor. Also dual outputs so you could drive a TV too.
  5. neiltc13 macrumors 68040


    May 27, 2006
    The 9400M chip will play games fine, and on laptops I guess it is a reasonable choice given the low screen resolutions.

    It won't run recent games very well at all though, nor will it do a good job of running any game at the native resolution of either the 20 or 24-inch iMac.

    If you are even remotely interested in gaming on these machines and are willing to pay the massive cost which they carry then you really should just suffer the extra cost and get the better card. All of the dedicated graphics cards on offer are vastly superior to the 9400M.
  6. aawil macrumors 6502a


    May 18, 2008
    Anyone have any comparisons between the 9400M and the HD2600 Pro? I'm finding it hard to believe it's really a step up in the long run.
  7. jla0 macrumors newbie

    Feb 27, 2009
    I say go for the ATI 4850 option. You'll regret in a year not going with a more powerful card.

    Btw... Geforce GT 120 = Geforce 9500 and Geforce GT 130 = Geforce 9600

    Look at some benchmarks and you'll see that the 4850 is in another league compared to the Nvidia cards...
  8. neiltc13 macrumors 68040


    May 27, 2006
    The ATi card will add a few weeks on to your computer's ship time.
  9. nss.aries macrumors member

    Feb 16, 2009
    what about the 9500/GT120? is it a good graphic card? How much better is the GT130 or the ATI?

    With ATI graphic card it takes 4-6 weeks to ship :/
  10. ditzy macrumors 68000


    Sep 28, 2007
    Is the graphics card in new 3.06 iMac better that old 3.06?
  11. neiltc13 macrumors 68040


    May 27, 2006
    Yes, quite considerably. But if you want even better performance get the ATi option.
  12. nateDEEZY macrumors 6502a

    Jan 24, 2007
    San Francisco, CA
    On a 24" monitor expect to play only Valve games decently at it's native resolution with the 4850.

    I wouldn't concern myself to much with the decision of what graphics card to use. Buying an iMac and trying to be cost conscious/economical is an oxymoron in itself.

    The most economical decision would be upgrade your PC's graphics card to something more modern, so long as your PC hasn't hit it's upgrade ceiling without getting to in-depth.
  13. leehal thread starter macrumors member

    Jan 30, 2009
    Thank for the feedback so far, I really wanted to go down the OS X route rather than upgrade my PC.

    Looking at the following:-

    Number Description Quantity Price Value
    Custom iMac, 24-inch, 2.93GHz Intel Core 2 Duo 1 £ 1407.83 £ 1407.83
    065-7994 -2.93GHz Intel Core 2 Duo
    065-8042 -4GB 1066MHz DDR3 SDRAM - 2x2GB
    065-8044 -NVIDIA GeForce GT 130 512MB
    065-8531 -640GB Serial ATA Drive
    065-8062 -Apple Mighty Mouse
    B065-8267 -Apple Keyboard (English) and User's Guide (English)
    B065-8055 -COUNTRY KIT,IMAC 24-GBR
    Copyright Levy ex VAT: £ 0.00
    Total Price ex VAT: £1407.83
    *All prices are exclusive of VAT

    Is it really worth the 4-6 week wait for the HD4850 card?
  14. EmperorDarius macrumors 6502a

    Jan 2, 2009
    And another question: can it be less than 4 weeks?
  15. Darsh macrumors member

    Apr 14, 2008
    I was wondering if anyone could give me a comparison between the new chips and the older chips. I currently play WoW on a Macbook with the GMA x1300 chipset, and I have played on the last rev of iMac, with the Radeon 2400 XT. I'm assuming that the new geforce 9400m will blow the x1300 outta the water, but how will it compare to the Radeon 2400?

    Any insight would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

    edit: also, I see someone mentioned about 24 vs 20 inch... will there be a significant performance drop on the bigger screen with the same graphics card?
  16. nateDEEZY macrumors 6502a

    Jan 24, 2007
    San Francisco, CA
    Yes, if you use the larger screen (24") at it's native resolution.
  17. RemarkabLee macrumors 6502a

    Nov 14, 2007
    I'm sure the 4-6 weeks could change as time goes on.

    Apple are usually conservative with their lead times.
  18. Darsh macrumors member

    Apr 14, 2008
    How bad will it be? Are we talking from playable to unplayable, or dropping from 60 to 55 FPS?
  19. imacdaddy macrumors 6502a

    Feb 2, 2006
  20. Annngel macrumors regular

    Jun 26, 2008
    Somewhere.. over the rainbow.
    As if we don't know how Apple is stingy about the graphic cards.

    Anyway, can i post something here! I'm kinda little lazy to start a new thread.

    I've no idea if i should take the iMac 2.93GHz with 1TB and Nvidia GT130


    the included 640 GB and ATI Radeon HD 4850 512MB

    I sort of play games quite often. But 1TB looks nicer than 640GB. But i can always get an external HD if i need more space in the future right? And the graphic card isn't upgradable at all?
  21. RemarkabLee macrumors 6502a

    Nov 14, 2007
  22. westycat macrumors newbie

    Sep 26, 2008

    I am debating on these to configurations also, but i don't play games, I do more graphics design and simple video editing. What do you guys recommend? My question isn't ment to hijack....just to compare Annngel's needs and Mine....gaming, vrs design.....i'm clueless on the graphics option. Thanks in advance.
  23. JGuez macrumors member

    Jun 20, 2008
    Will the NVIDIA GeForce 9400M be able to run Star Craft 2 when it comes out, and Counter Strike: Source?

    That's all I really need to know, thanks.
  24. nick9191 macrumors 68040

    Feb 17, 2008
    What games would you like to play?

    If its just Warcraft I'd go for the Mini.
  25. Annngel macrumors regular

    Jun 26, 2008
    Somewhere.. over the rainbow.
    Er uhm.

    Lineage 2, NWN2, Granado Espada, Maple Story, Audition, Spore, Sims 2.

    Mood changes. Preference changes too.

    But none of this are like super high end games like Crysis right?

    But i'm waiting for AION! Supposedly coming out in Fall 2009. It has superb graphics

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