Second thoughts about getting an iMac 5k

Discussion in 'iMac' started by odedia, Dec 27, 2014.

  1. odedia macrumors 65816

    Nov 24, 2005
    I bought one about 3 weeks ago and it still didn't arrive (4.0ghz i7, 295x, 512gb SSD, 32gb RAM).

    I'm seriously questioning if the Mac Pro (6-core model) is the better option for me. I already own an Apple LED Display (27", non Thunderbolt). The iMac is cool, and the screen is great, but I feel like I'm doing the same mistake all over again: Owning a machine that can't be upgraded or fixed in the future. I own a 2011 Macbook Pro with failing AMD GPU. It feels like the GPU in this 5k would fail a lot quicker than the one in the Mac Pro. Even if it does work for years, it'll probably feel old in 2 years time, while the card(s) in the Mac Pro are potentially replaceable, like any other component in there.

    Today, the iMac is actually FASTER for most tasks which is why I chose it.
    However, the Mac Pro is potentially a lot more reliable. With the way Apple has been in the last few years, this is becoming a much bigger consideration for me that in the past (I also had an iPhone 4s that died for no reason, at least Apple replaced that one with a 5s after a few months of deliberations).

    There is SOME hope that in the future external GPUs over thunderbolt would become mainstream. With Thunderbolt 2 that's actually pretty relevant, getting around 80-90% the performance of an internal card. Plus, SSD upgrades via Thunderbolt 2 result is faster speeds that the internal SSD (internal is 2x PCIe, thunderbolt is 4x PCIe).

    My main uses are Final Cut Pro, Lightroom and XCode. Photos due look spectacular on that screen...

    I'm in the "I don't know" zone. Probably if I had the machine on my desk for a few weeks I wouldn't even consider it, but the wait is making me think about it too much.
  2. fastlanephil macrumors 65816


    Nov 17, 2007
    It sounds to me like you made the right decision. Speed and the Retina display probably out way the additional reliability of the Mac Pro for what you are using it for. Just keep things backed up.

    It will probably do the job for three years and then something better will be available. Dropping the same generation but higher core count CPU in a Mac Pro is convenient but isn't the same as a whole new machine and it won't give you much of a single core speed boost if any.

    Myself, I'll probably bite the bullet and eventually get a Mac Pro but I work with audio where multi-cores are more important than raw speed and so is quiet operation.
  3. redheeler macrumors 604


    Oct 17, 2014
    For the uses you described you could certainly benefit from the retina display. Also doesn't sound like you absolutely need the power of a six-core Mac Pro.

    The iMac was the right choice to make. It should serve you for years to come.
  4. largefarrva macrumors 6502a

    Jun 30, 2012
    I was really torn between getting the 5k iMac vs. regular 27" iMac because of the reports that the gpu's in the 5k weren't going to be up to par as far as being able to push the number of pixels on the 5k screen.

    We ended up going with the 5k to give it a chance, and I'm sure glad we did. It was well worth the 2 week wait. The screen is beautiful, and the gpu actually does a pretty good job playing WoW (basically the only game we play).

    I'm pretty sure you'll feel the wait was worth it once you get it in hand. Give the 5k iMac a shot....I think you'll be happy you did.
  5. robgendreau macrumors 68040

    Jul 13, 2008
    It just shows you can't trust "reports" from posters on places like this forum. I am sorta surprised that some very demanding gaming freaks even buy a Mac instead of building their own machine; Mac's have never been able to keep up with some overclocked PC beast. Whaddya expect?? It's a battle you can never win.

    Meanwhile, for the rest of us, it's amazing. And far and away a much much better value than a nMP. And BTW, the nMP isn't exactly a model of upgradability and expansion. Just ask the people who own them and would want to use the latest greatest 5k display with it...but can't. Ooops.

    I feel you though; I hate the fact I can't do much to repair or upgrade iMacs, and I even used a hackintosh till recently. But the riMac is amazing, and a great value, for what you get. Worth the compromises. You stare at that screen every second you use the computer; having the best one is worth putting up with deficiencies elsewhere in the machine.
  6. odedia thread starter macrumors 65816

    Nov 24, 2005
    Thanks everyone. The iMac is finally home and it's incredible. The temperature can indeed get to absurd levels of over 100 degrees Celsius in certain tasks, but I have 3 years warranty for that.


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