Returning i7 395X for a I7 395 or(vs) i5 390

Discussion in 'iMac' started by mattoligy, Nov 8, 2015.

  1. mattoligy, Nov 8, 2015
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2015

    mattoligy macrumors 6502

    mattoligy

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    #1
    Long story short I have a top spec being collected for return tomorrow that has an i7 395X 512SSD! The reason I am returning it is for three reasons...

    1) OS X still displays UI Lag in various places such as the photos app and iTunes (full screen) so I feel the expensive upgrade costs aren't justified as a home user.
    2) The graphics chips are the same as last year and not a real upgrade compared to a switch to nvidia or a die shrink.
    3) To be honest for what I'm doing the top spec is probably overkill anyway.

    The reason I went all out on the top spec originally was for investment and future proofing but on reflection I don't think this years model is the milestone model to chuck all your money on maxing out unless you are a pro and your living depends on it. I am not a pro and more of a prosumer but I want an iMac now so I will compromise on spec and sell it when a milestone upgrade is available, be it next year or the year after!

    so my question is, which of the alternative models in the title of this post is better for my usage case (below) and will the hyper threading in the i7 and the 395 vs the 390 benefit such use...

    - Cities Skyline and Simcity (only games I'll play, unless hl3 comes out, which I seriously doubt) which apparently are more cpu dependant than gpu
    - Casual photo and video editing maybe some in 4K but that is more thinking ahead
    - Logic Pro, Ableton and other music creation daws
    - iTunes, web browsing with Lots of open tabs
    - heavy multitasking

    Also, does OS X and multitasking in general benefit largely from hyper threading?

    I am leaning towards i7 395 256SSD home ram upgrade to 16GB or 32GB

    I have spent hours searching and this thread is a last resort so really appreciate your time guys. Thanks. Matt
     
  2. desmond2046 macrumors regular

    desmond2046

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    #2
    i7+395 is probably the best for you. 395 is a big step up from 390. (1792 cores vs 1280 cores). The upgrade from 395 to 395X is in my opinion too expensive for the performance difference.
    i7 6700K is also a big step up from i5 6600. The new skylake i5 cannot beat the sandy bridge i7 from 2011 in most of the tasks.
     
  3. fathergll macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2014
    #3
    Personally I'd considered saving close to $700 and buying a 2014 refurb model to hold you over until the next big refresh(probably next fall). You wouldn't take much of a hit on the resale as oppose to a $2550 model. If you are making money off this computer go all out but for casual use just save the money if you can. From what I gathered you are just doing casual gaming and content creation. Lower model is fine(unless you are actually a serious hobbyist which only you know the answer to)

    http://www.apple.com/shop/product/G...z-quad-core-intel-core-i5-with-retina-display
     
  4. jerwin macrumors 65816

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    #4
  5. Sirmausalot macrumors 6502a

    Sirmausalot

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    #5
    Unless you went into debt over it, I'd keep it. Though I think you were right that the 395X was overkill -- but as others pointed out the 395 is a worthwhile upgrade over the 390. Though I think the 512GB SSD is a good bang for buck and a good long term investment, especially over the 256GB. So in sum, the only mistake you made was perhaps the X which is $250 more than you should have spent. But not a huge mistake.

    I don't think you're going to see any major 'milestones' in a year or two -- especially looking at Intel's chip roadmap. The biggest upgrade was last year when we got to retina screens in 5K. Although I tend to upgrade more frequently than I should, I fully expect this to power my needs for a long while. As for the UI lag, El Capitain unfortunately has some bugs to be worked out.
     
  6. Erdbeertorte macrumors demi-goddess

    Erdbeertorte

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    #6
    Did anyone notice that the price is the same for i7 - M390 - 512 SSD and i7 - M395 - 512 SSD:

    Screen Shot 2015-11-08 at 22.28.38.png Screen Shot 2015-11-08 at 22.27.37.png
     
  7. AlifTheUnseen macrumors member

    AlifTheUnseen

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    May 17, 2014
    #7
    Didn't we see similar graphical glitches in OS X with the first RiMac and the 295X update?
    Or does my memory play tricks again? These glitches in 2014 were resolved eventually, weren't they?
     
  8. AlifTheUnseen macrumors member

    AlifTheUnseen

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    #8
    Not in my store - the M395 variant is approx. 50 € more expensive…
     
  9. Serban Suspended

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    Jan 8, 2013
    #9
    UI glitches was on Yosemite and M290, i think with el Capitan were improved to none but still
    With M295x not so much
     
  10. fathergll macrumors 6502a

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    #10


    Yep. Though most of the UI lag was fixed by 10.10.3 or 10.10.4 for Yosemite on the M290. ElCapitan is snappy with the M290.

    The worst part was all of the conspiracy theorists claiming the M290 didn't have enough juice to do basic operations on a 5K display which didn't make sense. It was apparent that wasn't the issue from the start because you could game on the display but certain basic actions in the OS would lag.

    I think this was a classic case of Apple rushing cutting edge new hardware out at the same time with a new OS and trying to keep it secret. This basically led to product that wasn't QA fully.
     
  11. Erdbeertorte, Nov 8, 2015
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2015

    Erdbeertorte macrumors demi-goddess

    Erdbeertorte

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    #11
    Just checked some online stores. Seems to be in some stores with € only. I noticed that the iMac in both posted configuration is 30 € more in the Netherlands. Maybe because they have 21% VAT. But the price in Germany and Austria is the same, although in Austria the VAT is 20% and in Germany only 19%.
     
  12. mattoligy thread starter macrumors 6502

    mattoligy

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    #12
    Am I missing something, in all of those benchmarks is the biggest jump not from the 380 to the 390 with the jump up to the 395 being relatively small? Because that's how it looks...

    Didn't bench Simcity sorry, however I maxed all the settings and it was running silky smooth!
     
  13. hal.b macrumors newbie

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    Mar 11, 2015
    #13
    so you're just returning it because its overkill?
     
  14. jerwin macrumors 65816

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    #14
    You would be correct if the m380 was "adequate", and the m395x was "maximum overkill". But the cards occupy a different range on the performance curve. For AAA games, the chances of the m395x running "silky smooth with maxed settings are slim to none. If you play AAA games, the m395x is pretty much the absolute minimum before you start looking seriously at the hackintosh option
    But you don't play AAA games. You play SimCity-- and possibly you'll play its successors in a few years time. Wouldn't it be nice to play your favorite game as it was designed to look? Wouldn't it be a shame if your m390 or m380 could only play it with compromises? If those jumps in performance make certain things possible, they might be worth the added cost. If those jumps in performance simply increase the framerate further past your minimum comfortable rate, they aren't.

    Unfortunately, we don't have benchmarks. Maybe you could ask someone with a m390/m395?
     
  15. Fairchild macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2011
    #15
    I just ordered a late 2014 iMac 5K from the refurb store with the i7, m290x, and 1 TB fusion. The way i saw it, why spend over $ 500 more on the newer model with m395, that doesn't offer any major gains for me, and doesn't included any major architectural revision stuff like usb-c, thunderbolt 3 etc. I plan to keep this machine for a couple of years and will be using it mainly for music production and some casual gaming. This machine should be a beast with logic!
     
  16. aevan macrumors 68000

    aevan

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    #16
    MOST of the tasks? Seriously?

    First of all, an i7 upgrade is rarely noticeable over i5 even in the same generation for most users (excluding those that do multi-threaded stuff)

    Second, in all benchmarks, including multi-threaded ones, a last year Haswell i5 beats a Sandybridge i7, let alone a Skylake i5.

    So:

    1. A Skylake i5 is faster in all tasks, and even if you do manage to find a situation where it is somehow slower, it is far from "most" tasks.

    2. An i7 upgrade is certainly overkill for a lot of users even in the same generation.
     
  17. Hangs macrumors newbie

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    Midlands UK
    #17
    I am finding the various threads on I5 v I7 and M390/395/395X interesting - but also extremely confusing. I am trying to seek out the best replacement for a late 2009 iMac that has served me very well. Initially, I was looking at a top of the range i7 but the more that I read, the more I am confused. I am retired and my interests are Lightroom and occasional Photoshop. I am not interested in gaming on a Mac. My 2009 IMac was a refurbished model and I have looked at the refurb store but that has just confused me even further. I can get a 7% discount on a new IMac. Grateful for any thoughts - thank you?
     
  18. aevan, Nov 9, 2015
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2015

    aevan macrumors 68000

    aevan

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    #18
    Understandable. The problem here is that these forums are full of tech enthusiasts that think nothing but the very best would do.

    To be honest, if I had more money to spare I would get maximum of everything, just because I love this stuff. But that doesn't mean I need it. Most of the differences is only noticeable in benchmarks, not in real life use.

    When it comes to Lightroom and Photoshop I seriously doubt you will notice any difference in your work between an i5 and i7. The i7 has more threads due to hyperthreading so multithreaded apps (like 3D rendering) do offer substantial gains. For example, my friend does a lot of 3dsmax and an i7 literaly shortens his rendering time by hours, by cutting off a few minutes of each frame rendered. But in Photoshop/Lightroom? You won't feel the difference.

    For a lot of people the i7 is a waste of money. There are upgrades that do matter a lot (like SSD/Fusion Drive or going from 4 to 8Gb RAM) but a lot of them are noticeable for a very specific target group (like adding RAM past 16 - or even 8Gb, or going from an i5 to i7).

    A lot of people here buy the maxed out version since they can afford it without too much strain. I would do the same, as I said, but only because I love this stuff (the same reason why someone might buy a gold watch or expensive shoes). And when people buy a maxed out computer, they feel the need to justify that choice, so the forums are full of "you need a max GPU/CPU, 32Gb RAM, SSD only" etc. In reality, they don't have anything to compare their computers to. No one gets an i5, then returns it for an i7 because it felt slow. Instead, people get the i7 and then claim it's a great choice because their computer feels fast (it would feel just as fast with an i5 too, because for the past few generations, the CPUs have been awesome and basically overkill for 90% of work - just think about it, even the passive cooled, dual-core "M" CPU in a MacBook with 4x less Ghz can run.... well, almost everything!)

    I can only speak from my experience. I used to have an i7 iMac from 2011. Now I have an i5 iMac 5K from 2014 and an i7 MacBook Pro Retina 15" from 2013. I don't see any noticeable difference between these three computers in Photoshop, and I illustrate on fairly large (7000x6000px) files. Everything I read online only supports this - you don't really need an i7 for Photoshop or Lightroom. Video rendering apps, on the other hand, benefit from the i7, so if you're into After Effects, then perhaps the i7 upgrade would be reasonable. But even there, it's not like the i5 will be slow or anything. In fact, my iMac is really fast and I never feel like I need better hardware for anything I do (I'm an illustrator working in Photoshop, Zbrush, etc.)

    Hope this helps.
     
  19. Hangs macrumors newbie

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    Midlands UK
    #19
    Thanks @aevan that helps a lot. The issue is not one of affordability per se - although that is a factor in all buying decisions. Whilst I am retired, I embrace modern technology and I have invested in such things as PV Solar, smart heating controls (Honeywell Evohome) and I own an electric vehicle (not a Tesla I should hasten to add). Given that my present iMac is over 6 years old ( a top of the range i7 at the time), and I would aim to keep my next machine for a similar period of time, the debate in mind is whether saving c.400 Euros now by going for an i5/395/512 Flash might be somewhat short-sighted. If I changed my iMac every two years, I wouldn't even consider an i7/m395x.
     
  20. mattoligy thread starter macrumors 6502

    mattoligy

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    #20
    Does OS X make use of hyperthreading in any way, such as multitasking, or is it just apps?
     
  21. Buerkletucson macrumors 6502

    Buerkletucson

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    #21

    Seriously I wish you would participate in more discussions............you put a real dose of reality into the discussions and describe it in a way that the average user can understand.

    Kudos to you and your posts....
     
  22. makrom macrumors regular

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    Nov 4, 2015
    #22
    This is pretty much what the benchmarks are telling us. Only for massively multithreaded tasks there are advantages up to 50%, but one should really think about how often one is planning to do that.
    Sure, professional video editors should go for the i7 without thinking twice, but for single threaded stuff one shouldn't expect much of a difference between 3.9 and 4.2 GHz, and let's not forget, the i5 can handle up to 4 threads without any issues as well (though it will soon run at 3.3 GHz as opposed to 4 GHz).
     
  23. mattoligy thread starter macrumors 6502

    mattoligy

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    #23
  24. makrom macrumors regular

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    #24
    Well, my Japanese is a bit "rusty", bit this article came out almost instantly after the late 2015 iMacs were announced. I remember being irritated by how much faster than anything else they benched the M290X in XBENCH, this definitely seemed off and such an advantage can't be seen in either the benchmark aggregation somewhere else in this forum nor any other benchmark I've seen.
    For CPU, these are the barefeet tests: http://barefeats.com/imac5k16.html
    One should note that most of the benchmarks are multithreaded tasks so the generally big advantage of the i7 is no surprise. While it totally makes sense to focus benchmarks on such tasks, since they are where different CPUs make the biggest difference, whether it has any real world significance greatly depends on whether one actually does these things.
    A very rough average roundup of the current GPU seems to be something like this (it's really more of a rule of thumbs rather than something with any accuracy):
    M395X 100%
    M395 90%
    M390 80%
    M380 40%
    6200 20%
     
  25. mattoligy, Nov 9, 2015
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2015

    mattoligy thread starter macrumors 6502

    mattoligy

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    #25
    I'm more concerned about the 6200 supposedly being faster than the 390 o_O

    I understand the whole i7 hyperthreading in benchmarks vs an i5 but this gpu thing is worrying...

    Also, how the hell is the 3.1 i5 broadwell in the 4K beating the 3.2 i5 Skylake in the 5K?
     

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