Q6600 > 2010 iMac i7 (Yellow, returned) > 2011 iMac i7

Discussion in 'iMac' started by fivedots, Jun 29, 2011.

  1. fivedots, Jun 29, 2011
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2011

    fivedots macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2011
    #1
    Hi! I'm currently running a hack with OS X 10.6.8 with the following specs:

    Q6600 OC'd @ 3.2 Ghz
    4gb of RAM (also OC'd, but can't remember the speed off hand)
    nVidia 8800 GS 384 mb

    I'm a heavy Aperture 3 and Photoshop user, not much of a gamer aside from SC2, which runs fine currently. Aperture however slows down quite a bit when processing images and working at 100%. Using brushes can be almost unbearable, especially when many adjustments have been done to the image.

    Time for a new bigger (and IPS) monitor as well, so I'm looking at a refurbished 2010 27" iMac, with the quad-core 2.93 Ghz i7, 12 gb of ram, and the 1 gb ATI graphics card.

    But before I pull the trigger, I just want to make sure that this is a worthwhile upgrade. Haven't followed much of the i5/i7 progress. I know it's a couple generations ahead of the Q6600, so this should be a substantial performance increase, yes? Aperture should run essentially flawlessly, correct? (Original Canon 5D files).

    Curious to hear from anybody who has taken a similar upgrade path and those who use Aperture on an iMac. Thanks! :)
     
  2. eggfoam macrumors member

    eggfoam

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2011
    #2
    That upgrade should take you from about 6000-7000 GeekBench to around 10,000. I suspect Aperture will feel much snappier. Just a thought, though -- how's your RAM usage? Aperture loves RAM, and 4GB seems marginal for big RAW files like the 5D produces. If you want the iMac, go for it, but if you want to save your money, you could try upgrading the RAM in your Hackintosh first.
     
  3. fivedots thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 29, 2011
    #3
    That was my thought as well. The now much higher cost of DDR2 doesn't seem worth it, especially consider the RAM I have is discontinued, then I'd have to rejig the overclock, etc. I've also been told the graphics card may be a little underpowered for Aperture as well.

    My combined desire for more speed and a big IPS panel is really pushing this decision, just wanted to make sure the performance is there. Can't justify the new iMacs, I don't feel the performance upgrade would really benefit me all that much over the 2010 models when considering the cost.
     
  4. clyde2801 macrumors 601

    clyde2801

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2008
    Location:
    In the land of no hills and red dirt.
    #4
    The new imacs have sandy bridge and an improved i7, not to mention better graphics cards. What I'm dying to see is if 10.7 will utilize the intel sb motherboard, which will allow an additional SSD (even a smallish one) to work in conjunction with the HD to make it a big honkin' hybrid hard drive.

    I think what you've got is a core2duo at 2.66ghz, right?
     
  5. fivedots thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 29, 2011
    #5
    Currently it's a Core 2 Quad Q6600 2.4 GHz, OC'd to 3.2 GHz.
     
  6. clyde2801 macrumors 601

    clyde2801

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2008
    Location:
    In the land of no hills and red dirt.
    #6
    Right, pardon the dyslexia, I've got the same chip in a lanbox that I'm trying to hackintosh.

    You should be able to tell a fair difference with either last year's i7 or this year's i5.
     
  7. fivedots thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2011
    #7
    Not a problem!

    Good to know. I'm hoping the combination of processor bump, RAM (and DDR3), video card will combine into a rather hefty performance bump. And my eyes will thank me as well.
     
  8. iamthedudeman macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2007
    #8
    Well I have had recently the 21.5 i7 with SSD and 1TB HD with the i7 2600S and sent that back for a refurb 27 i7 2010 2.93 27 with SSD only and the geekbench score is 10800 for the 2.93 2010 model and 11300 for the Sandybridge 2.8 21.5 model.


    My refub is flawless, no yellowing screen, pixels are fine. This machine is perfect. Cannot say the same for my 21.5 2011 model imac. Refurb all the way.

    Better than new. Actually get checked out. The speed is about the same as the 2.8 Sandybridge i7. I also have 12GB of ram and this machine is silent. No noise. At all.

    It is still the second fastest 27 imac right now. Faster than the i5 3.1 sandybridge 27 but the GPU is weaker. Stronger CPU but weaker GPU than the i5 27 3.1.

    The CPU in the 27 i7 2010 model is stronger than the base 27. So for the same price as a base 27 you get a stronger CPU and GPU and most likely less problems being a refurb.

    You give up Thun port and HD facetime.
     
  9. fivedots thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 29, 2011
    #9
    That is all great information, thanks! Don't foresee much use for the Thunderbolt port, so not too concerned about that loss.

    Glad to hear buying the refurb will get me better specs overall.

    Excited for how quiet they are too. My current machine and it's 5 fans make quite the racket.

    Checked out a 27" at the store last night -- it's going to take awhile to get used to that much display!
     
  10. fivedots thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2011
    #10
    So before I pull the trigger, any thoughts as to what is the better deal? Like I said, Aperture user and light SCII player.

    Refurbished iMac 27-inch 2.93GHz Intel Quad-Core i7 processor ($1569 CDN)
    Originally released July 2010
    27-inch LED-backlit glossy widescreen display
    4GB memory
    1TB hard drive
    8x SuperDrive (DVD±R DL/DVD±RW/CD-RW)
    ATI Radeon HD 5750 graphics with 1GB memory
    Built-in iSight camera

    Refurbished iMac 27-inch 3.1GHz Quad-Core Intel Core i5 ($1699 CDN)
    Originally released May 2011
    27-inch LED-backlit glossy widescreen display
    4GB memory
    1TB hard drive
    8x SuperDrive (DVD±R DL/DVD±RW/CD-RW)
    AMD Radeon HD 6970M graphics with 1GB memory

    Built-in FaceTime HD camera
     
  11. Mashuri macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 9, 2011
    #11
    I made almost the exact jump you're contemplating (Q6600 OC'd to 3.1 GHz). I notice quite a difference in heavy Photoshop / Capture One use along with some video encoding I do. Get an SSD when you can as well!
     
  12. fivedots thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 29, 2011
    #12
    Nice to hear! Glad you like it. No SSD in my plans, sadly. Just can't justify it right now. Maybe in the next iMac. :)

    And I believe iamthedudeman answered my question above, saying that that the 2010 i7 is a better buy over the 2011 i5. So I guess 2010 i7 it is. It's already sitting in my shopping cart.
     
  13. MacUser2525 macrumors 68000

    MacUser2525

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2007
    Location:
    Canada
    #13
    A couple of weeks ago I went from i5 Hack to MacPro don't really use the apps you do but thought I would let you know that if you want to keep your current install then its stupidly easy to do if you have external USB enclosure. All that is needed is to use diskutil to restore your current install to the external not bothering to install Chameleon on the external and removing your /Extra directory and any other changes made to any of the system directories. You then boot the usb on the Mac machine to ensure everything works as expected if it does then use diskutil to restore the usb to the internal drive reboot into install and your done.
     
  14. fivedots, Jul 11, 2011
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2011

    fivedots thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2011
    #14
    Received the iMac, used for a day or so, and then realized I had a 1/3 yellow screen. Noticed through daily usage too--not just staring at test bars. Not so great for photo editing and looking at anything white. Hard drive also seemed kind of loud too, though I'm not sure if it's normal or not. Somewhat like coffee percolating, even when not doing anything disk-heavy.

    Returning it. Since I ordered it, 2011's have popped up as refurbs, so ordered the 2011 i7 3.4 Ghz in its place. Hopefully this one wasn't returned due a yellow screen and just resold! Will enjoy the improved GPU as well.

    Also, does anyone know how long the FedEx return shipping labels take to come via email? Return shows up in my Apple store account, but nothing by email yet.
     

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