Potential new iMac owner.... looking for some last minute buying advice :)

Discussion in 'iMac' started by deano411, Dec 27, 2010.

  1. deano411 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2010
    #1
    Hey Guys!

    My current Windows XP desktop is well due for re-newal, so come the start of the new year I'm going to treat myself to a mac :)

    Why Mac?
    Like I said, My desktop is up for re-newal and having owned previous apple products (iPods, iPhones etc.) I just find that everything apple produce is spot on!

    I like the fact that they are so simple, just a screen, mouse and keyboard... no tower or anything
    They're very quiet
    They cannot Get viruses I believe???
    They are a lot quicker and last longer than windows counterparts?

    The question I am now asking myself is which one to go for?
    This is what I will be using the mac for...

    - General Internet browsing (facebook, forums etc.)
    - College work (Will have to purchase the mac version of 'office')
    - Storing a large music collection
    - Storing a large Image Collection
    - Storing a large Video Collection
    - General Video Editing (as a hobby)
    - Photoshop??? (I've never used photoshop due to my computer being extremely slow, so I'd like to possibly give it a go on a mac)
    - May also play some games on it too :)

    Those are pretty much my reasons, what I'd like to know is... will the basic iMac i3, with 3.06Ghz and 4gb ram be enough for what I need it for?

    Is there anything I should look out for you know.... are there any quick tips that would be handy to know like say.... if you spend an extra £50 you will get twice the ram or something I dno haha :p
    I'd like to keep my budget as close to £1,000 as possible, but I can be quite leniant on this If I know I'm going to get my moneys worth :)

    Thanks for reading :)
     
  2. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

    Staff Member

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    Dec 10, 2008
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    Finland
    #2
    The base iMac is just fine. You can add more RAM later on from aftermarket if needed but I'm pretty sure 4GB is sufficient for your needs, at least in the beginning. If you're going to game, then the high-end 21.5" might be worth it but the base will be fine, games just won't run as well as they would in the high-end one.
     
  3. deano411 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Dec 26, 2010
    #3
    Thats cool :)
    The games thing is just an optional really, it's not something I do probably just something I can see myself being tempted to do once I get a decent computer
     
  4. zedsdead macrumors 68040

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    Jun 20, 2007
    #4
    I would go for the upper iMac 21.5. The extra hard drive space will be needed for what you are doing (although you could always add an external later), plus the faster graphics and processor will be a nice addition. If you don't think you need that much space, then don't worry about it.
     
  5. deano411 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Dec 26, 2010
    #5
    I did look at the upper mac 21.5
    its another £250
    but when you come to the upgrades page you can upgrade a lot more like the harddrive, and the processor to i5 etc.
    I could see myself upgrading bits and bobs :p and running up a huge bill :p
     
  6. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

    Staff Member

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    #6
    For 250£, you can get several TBs of external storage which is more than fine for storing libraries. Storing everything in the internal HD isn't good because sooner than later it will be fairly full which means data must be written to the inner part which is slower.
     
  7. deano411 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Dec 26, 2010
    #7
    Thats handy to know
    so your saying that rather than pay apple prices for an upgraded internal HD
    I'm better off keeping my internal HD as empty as possible
    and buying an external HD to keep permenanetly connected and use this for storage?
     
  8. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

    Staff Member

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    Finland
    #8
    Yeah, that's better, especially if you have large collections/libraries. You don't have to keep the internal as empty as possible (I have 640GB internal with 200GB free) but storing e.g. videos in externals is wise since they take so much space and are not accessed frequently. I have around 4TB of external storage where I store my video and photo libraries. Easy to transfer data to/from other machines as well.
     
  9. deano411 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Dec 26, 2010
    #9
    It's looking like I'm going to go for

    Basic 21.5 iMac
    Apple Care
    Office for macs

    and I'll buy an external harddrive to keep permenantely connected

    EDIT:
    Just a quick question, when you buy a new imac, does it come with all discs required to re-format the system if it was to fail?
    and what happens when they bring out new O.S's?? does it cost a fortune to buy the latest one like the windows computers?
     
  10. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

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    Finland
    #10
    Yes, all Macs come with discs that can be used to reinstall the OS X and iLife. New OS usually costs 129$ but last year, Snow Leopard was only 29$ so there is hope that Lion will be 29$ as well
     
  11. zedsdead macrumors 68040

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    Jun 20, 2007
    #11
    Snow Leopard wasn't considered as major of an upgrade. I doubt it will be $29. My guess is that it will be less than $129, but more than $29. Say $79.
     
  12. iMacN00b macrumors member

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    Sep 9, 2010
    #12
    Seems perfect for your needs. If you do feel like playing games, and they struggle a bit on the iMac, you can pick up a PS3 for less than the upgrade would have cost you, and get a mediaplayer/Blu-Ray player too. :D

    iMac's come with the re-install CD's and OS updates aren't normally too expensive. Snow leopard upgrade is 250kr (£25) over here, which is quite cheap really. I don't know if the new upgrade will be considered a "Major update" or not, but I doubt it will be more than 750kr (£75).
     
  13. mrt209 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2010
    Location:
    USA/Germany
    #13
    The iMac they picked for you should be fine. You mentioned that the iMacs are quite, and in my experience their very noisy, but then again I had the 27in i7 version so might be different from the 21.5.

    Maybe if a friend has one you could try it for a hour and see if the noise is bothering you, in the Apple store they seem quiet but only because of all the noise in the store.

    Anyway, let us know how you like your new mac ;)
     
  14. deano411 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Dec 26, 2010
    #14
    Hmm never thought about that :p
    Well, they can't be as loud as the HUGE fan on my desktop atm :p
    Gna hopefully order it today if the stores open (last 2 days ive tried to phone but they've been closed for the holidays)
    Thanks for the advice guys :)
     
  15. gnasher729 macrumors P6

    gnasher729

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2005
    #15
    The one thing that was forgotten that is a MUST for every computer: An external drive for backups. Get any cheap external drive, performance isn't really critical, plug it into the iMac, set up Time Machine, and you will always have a backup that is never older than one hour.

    Apple Care: You have one year time to order it (as long as the original warranty runs), so you can wait and see how your Mac works out, and if it shows problems in the first 11 months that are fixed under warranty, _then_ you should buy Apple Care.
     
  16. deano411 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Dec 26, 2010
    #16
    Just called up the apple store :)
    This is my quote (with my student discount)

    iMac - £878.90
    Apple care - £44.65

    Total - £923.55

    Hopefully gna order it tomorrow :)
     
  17. metalblaze macrumors member

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    Feb 17, 2010
    #17
    Rumor says...new iMacs will be out in Spring. Although a speed bump, not a complete re-design.
     
  18. garcia2ko macrumors newbie

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    Nov 29, 2010
    #18
    To the OP: Everything you said is the reason I bought an iMac last month, and I have been very happy with the decision.

    Also, what the folks on here are recommending sounds spot on. I got a 21.5" from Mac Mall and upgraded to i5 processor and 2TB hard drive. Bought 4GB of memory separately and put it in myself in five minutes; also got an external drive.

    Saved tax through MacMall and it was more than the educational discount I would have gotten.

    Dan
     
  19. opera57 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2009
    #19
    Base or mid range iMac will suit you fine! I have a 2 year old 3.06ghz core 2 duo iMac which runs Photoshop with no problems at all, and as far as I know the i3 will be faster! If you need more than the 500GB storage the base model provides consider the mid range, or failing that an external hard drive (you can get a 2TB for less than £100!). [​IMG]
     
  20. deano411 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Dec 26, 2010
    #20
    Can't wait for my Mac to come :D
    Also got a copy of Microsoft Office Mac 11 for a tenner! :D
     
  21. deano411 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Dec 26, 2010
    #21
    got my mac yesterday :D
    didnt have much of a play on it until now :)
    absolutely love it
    just installing ms office 11 for mac :)
    i had to download a program called touch copy last night to recover my iphone music, but how do I remove programs from macs?
    im used to seeing a control panel and an add/remove programs on my windows
     
  22. spikemike macrumors newbie

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    Feb 14, 2010
    Location:
    The centre of the universe, Braintree, Essex, UK
    #22
    Any particular reason why you wanted Office for mac? try OpenOffice its free, I have been using on a PC & Mac for the past 12 months and its realy good.
     
  23. solowmodel macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2011
    #23
    It is possible to just drag and drop programs into the recycle bin to uninstall them. However, some them leave preferences and other files behind.

    Two uninstaller programs that remove all of the associated files are:

    AppZapper (paid)
    AppCleaner (free!^^)

    Other useful and free small tools are:

    Perian - codecs so you can play the majority of video files in Quicktime
    Flip4Mac - WMV codec
    VLC - universal video player

    Hope you enjoy your new mac :)
     

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