Should I return my 21.5" i3 3.06 Ghz for a new 21.5" i5 2.5 Ghz?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by DakotaGuy, May 5, 2011.

  1. DakotaGuy, May 5, 2011
    Last edited: May 5, 2011

    DakotaGuy macrumors 68040


    Jan 14, 2002
    South Dakota, USA
    I just want some of your thoughts on this. A couple of days ago I purchased a previous base iMac model new from Best Buy for $1,079. My mom is still running an old eMac so I figured it was time for her to get something better so I gave her a great deal on my Early 2008 base model 2.4 Ghz Core 2 Duo. I am sure she is going to be REALLY happy with it compared to her old eMac.

    Anyhow at the time I was happy to take the discount because Apple products are never on sale and every dollar counts. When I got my Early 2008 I purchased it on sale when the new models came out and I was always happy with it, but it does sound like these new 4 core machines are really a step up. Now my i3 shows 4 processors when I open activity monitor, but I know that it only runs 4 virtual threads and the OS sees it as 4 processors even though it is only a 2 core processor.

    Here is what I do with my computer. Safari for surfing, use iTunes, Watch YouTube, iPhoto, a tiny bit of iMovie, MS Office, a little Netflix and I do a few other things, but I am not really any sort of gamer on a computer unless it is a little bit of a simple flash game every now and then.

    I guess I am wondering what your thoughts are about me returning my iMac i3 3.06 Ghz and paying the extra money to get the new base model? I know it is probably more future proofed, however Apple is still making computers right now that have quite a bit less power then mine so I know it would be good for years to come. I don't really run anything very processor intensive so would I really benefit by paying the extra money and going through the hassle of return?

    Thanks for your comments. I know most people around here are into the bleeding edge technology so I expect many will say return and upgrade, however maybe a few will think the other way. So far I will say that the iMac Core i3 does feel like a big step up compared to my old 2.4 Ghz Core 2 Duo machine and I am very happy with it's performance, but I just wanted your input.
  2. Macky-Mac macrumors 68030


    May 18, 2004
    unless you feel the need to be "bleeding edge" then what you just bought is just fine; keep it instead of spending the extra money
  3. seb-opp macrumors 6502

    Nov 16, 2008
    You said you got your iMac a couple of days ago, so I think that entitles you to swap it for a new one, though you might have to pay a restocking fee in the US (Im from the UK so don't really know how that works).

    If I was you, go back to the store, see if you can swap it, and if you can for free or for a minimal charge I'd do it as the new iMac has some major upgrades, not just the quad core processor, but the addition of Thunderbolt could mean its useful life would be longer than the 2010 version
  4. DoghouseMike macrumors regular

    Jan 18, 2011
    I reckon if you can do it with minimal hassle (or even a little bit of hassle), it's well worth it, just cos it's "useful life" will be a tiny bit longer than the previous gen
  5. Yamcha macrumors 68000

    Mar 6, 2008
    Yes, definitely, the Core i5 Sandybridge is so much faster then Core i3, infact it out performs the older but expensive Core i7, so do yourself a favour and exchange it, unless you end up paying way too much, but If i were you i'd totally make the exchange, and anyway the value of your Core i3 is going to go down, so if you plan on selling even later you'll loose a couple hundred if not more, better off paying a little more and getting this, it'll last longer you longer, and these processors are screaming fast.. :p
  6. striker33 macrumors 65816


    Aug 6, 2010
    Call Apple up and get it swapped, they'll happily exchange it as you've only had it a few days.

    Regardless of wether or not you'll use the extra power or not, it has a much better resale value in the future, and (correct me if im wrong) will use less power saving you on electricity with it being a SB.
  7. Chupa Chupa macrumors G5

    Chupa Chupa

    Jul 16, 2002
    Yes! Run to return. Sandy Bridge + TB, which I think will be the a standard connector within a year (as compared to Firewire which was always mostly Mac). This years iMacs are going to be relevant longer than last years for those two items alone. Don't compare your years C2D Mac to the i3. Look forward, not backwards.
  8. DakotaGuy thread starter macrumors 68040


    Jan 14, 2002
    South Dakota, USA
    Thanks for the advice and thanks to everyone else that commented. The new base 21.5" iMac i5 was on sale at Best Buy for only $10 more then I paid for the i3. They didn't hassle me at all with the return and the guy said forget about the $10.40 with tax and did straight exchange. I feel like I made the right decision to exchange and since it ended up being the same price I feel great! Thanks again!!!
  9. Jony Mac macrumors 6502

    Jony Mac

    Oct 27, 2010
    Pittsburgh, PA
    I'm actually looking to buy an iMac now, but Im debating should i go with the new model, or get one of the 2009 or 2010 refurbs.

    I'm upgrading (giving my wife my MacBook '09) so going from a C2D to any of these should be an improvement, but I'm not sure what to do.

    The '10 mode is now $929 as a refurb for the i3 model..that seems tempting. Is there really that much more performance on the '11 models that makes it worth just going to the latest release?
  10. rockyroad55 macrumors 601


    Jul 14, 2010
    Phila, PA
    YES!!!! Congrats on the swap!
  11. Cheffy Dave macrumors 68030

    Cheffy Dave

    Feb 5, 2007
    Sunny Florida, on the Gulf Coast in Homosassa Fl
    From what you came from, it is a big step,I personally have been waiting for Quad Core iMacs, and will give one each to all 5 of my employees, for Christmas. If you are in a window, where you could return yours for a Quad, I would, it is a true 4 core. for home I have gone minimalist, and use a 2007 2.2 BMB,and a 2008 2.4 BMB to run the business, and just purchased 2 11"MBA 1.6/4/64's which I am in the process of converting to 360GB OWC SSD's, for on road use.I do plan on hooking these to 2 ACD's if and when the two BMB's ever die.:rolleyes:
  12. DakotaGuy thread starter macrumors 68040


    Jan 14, 2002
    South Dakota, USA
    Already returned and upgraded to the new Quad Core for the same price. I can say one thing if you wait long enough to upgrade then you really notice it. Going from an Early 2008 base 2.4 Ghz iMac Core 2 Duo 20" to my new 2011 iMac 2.5 Ghz Core i5 21.5" feels like a HUGE step up in performance and graphics. My Early 2008 is going to my Mom who is still running a 1 Ghz eMac G4 so I am thinking her step up might be a lot bigger then mine. LOL:D

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