Return new iMac for a beefier model?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by dukee101, Nov 24, 2013.

  1. dukee101, Nov 24, 2013
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2013

    dukee101 macrumors member


    Jan 17, 2009
    So I was running a fully-loaded 2012 Mac mini for nearly a year when I finally decided to spring for one of the new 2013 27" iMacs. I just couldn't wait any longer for Apple to release a Thunderbolt display with the same thin design and lamination technology as the iMacs. With the 2013 iMacs finally allowing for a reasonably priced 256GB SSD option (PCIe at that!), it became a sensible proposition.

    So I got the base 27" with 3.2 GHz i5 CPU and GT 755M 1GB GPU. The odd part is that the CPU on this machine is on-par or weaker than my old Mac mini's 2.6 GHz i7. The Core i7-3720QM in the mini turbo boosts up to 3.6 GHz (4+4 virtual cores) and so does the Core i5-4570 in my new iMac (4 natural cores). The only difference is that my new CPU now runs at 3.2 all the time. Would that really make it feel faster? The GeekBench scores of the Mac mini are ~3,000 points are higher than my new iMac but does this really matter?

    Day-to-day I haven't really noticed much of a difference. I don't game nor do I engage in heavy AV processing. So this might be a moot point to begin with. But would it have been worth it to pay another ~$200 (education pricing) and get the upgraded 27" with the 3.4 GHz i5 and the GTX 775M 2GB GPU just to know I had lapped my old mini in terms of performance? Boxing this unit up and returning it and getting another one would be a hassle, but what I care about is value. I want to know I've bought a machine that's better than the last one I was using.

    The fact that my old mini's CPU had some muscle (for a decent price) may just have been an interesting quirk in the 2012-2013 product line-up. I get the feeling that I'm overpaying for the integration and design of the iMac, but I'm OK with that as long as I've brought home the right one (w/ the right upgrades). What do you guys think?

    The SSD is so wicked fast now with the PCIe bus it's just blowing my mind. That alone may have been worth it, as disk I/O determines a lot of what we interpret as speediness. It's ridiculous to think they still sell these high-end desktops with mechanical hard drives as standard kit. What a waste.
  2. raniel macrumors regular


    Jan 2, 2011
    if you're experiencing buyers remorse or feels that the current machine is only slightly better than the previous, you might as well return it. It will bug you as long as your using your imac, trust me :D
  3. dukee101 thread starter macrumors member


    Jan 17, 2009
    I've been spending a lot of time with my new system and I can safely say that the differences between the i5 and i7 are nil for my uses. I've run a few games and performed other tasks to push it to its limit and it performs admirably. I'm going to keep this unit. For resale purposes, it's probably best if you either stick with a base unit or a fully-specced unit. Models that have been upgraded "mid-tier" could suffer in market value because second-hand buyers don't have the same preferences and undervalue the uneven upgrades. The SSD was a no-brainer so I'll swallow its cost without regret. I think the previous Mac mini was just a little beast with the 2.6 GHz i7 quad they offered and it's frustrating you can't get i7's at a lower price point in the iMac line but I don't think it will matter to most consumers. Consider me one very happy iMac owner!
  4. bartonjm macrumors member

    Apr 22, 2012
    Upstate NY
    Glad to hear you've found satisfaction with your decision. I was in a similar situation at first. Deciding which level 27 inch to go with. I didn't max it out, at first, but I ended up with a higher end model as a result of several returns. Had I not had screen issues, I never would have upgraded.

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