OS X Should I trade in my newly bought iMac?

Discussion in 'Mac and PC Games' started by Wolfenstein51, Oct 23, 2012.

  1. Wolfenstein51 macrumors newbie

    Oct 23, 2012
    Hey all,

    I just bought a 27" iMac (intel core i7/3.4 Ghz/Radeon 6970m graphics card 1gb) less than a month ago and I was told I could send it back for a full refund so I can buy the new iMac in December. My question is: Is it worth trading it in for gaming? I have run most games just fine with my current setup (diablo 3, starcraft 2, etc. (though I have not tried any graphic intensive FPS games yet).

    Is the Geforce GTX 675mx or 680mx really that much of a graphical leap over the AMD Radeon 6970m? Don't know if its worth the hassle of not having a computer for almost 2 months and I still don't know how much the upgrade will cost to a Geforce 680mx (if any one knows the cost, please do tell). Any input would be greatly appreciated?
  2. Cougarcat macrumors 604

    Sep 19, 2003
    I don't think there are benchmarks for this card yet, but I would do it in a heartbeat. Even if the graphics performance isn't much better, the new iMac is a major upgrade in almost every other way.

    Also, I think Apple will try its hardest to get this out as early in December as it can, to be ready for the holidays. You'd be waiting a month and a half at most.
  3. Dirtyharry50, Oct 23, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2012

    Dirtyharry50 macrumors 68000


    May 17, 2012
    Just generally speaking, you could expect the new top end GPU to allow you to run most any current game on Ultra settings at at least 1080p and possibly 1440p. The frame rates will move up some too but not dramatically in most cases because you are cranking up the visuals. Some people will rush to judgement and assume ultra settings at 1440p will be possible but they would be guessing. There are no benchmarks yet. It's a lot more pixels to push so I wouldn't be so sure until some benchmarks are available.

    I just did a comparison of benchmarks on many current popular titles between the 6970m and the Nvidia 680m (NOT 680MX which will be a little faster still) because there are benchmarks for the 680m. That was what it basically came down to: at 1080p you could go from high settings to ultra pretty much across the board.

    So the question then becomes well, how much better looking is ultra vs high settings? How noticeable is it really and is it worth whatever amount of money Apple is going to be asking for the top end BTO GPU not to mention the inconvenience of being without your computer for two months.

    Lastly it may or may not be a concern for you personally but the new models do not have an optical drive anymore. As for CPU power, they are a minor upgrade over what you have.

    Some might say well, they look sexy! I guess if you like admiring your computer's edges from profile view in which case the new ones sort of look like a guy with a beer belly given the bulge. I'm thinking some things are probably best not even looked at. I prefer the frontal view myself.

    For gaming purposes, generally speaking it is a good idea to buy the best GPU you can afford at any given point in time for longevity more than anything else. So how long you keep a system between replacements is a factor as well.

    It is worthy of note that the above referenced benchmarks were from windows machines not iMacs I believe and so YMMV depending on if you are gaming with bootcamp or playing native OS X games or games ported to OS X. They are primarily useful just to get a ballpark idea of differences and make comparisons.

    Really, you have to consider everything above and make your own call. Are you okay with the inconvenience, losing the optical drive and higher cost to be able to go from high to ultra settings in general and gain some longevity or not?
  4. doh123 macrumors 65816

    Dec 28, 2009
    I'd return it for sure... nvidia is much less problematic if your wanting to run Windows games in OSX with anything Wine based... AMD drivers on OSX has MAJOR problems. This is usually not noticed in normal ways you use the GPU, or in games that make work-a-rounds for these issues.... but I'd never want an AMD when I could have a nvidia when on a non-Windows machine.

    Also with the new iMac you can get one of their Fusion drives... which will be a noticeable speed improvement without having to pay a fortune for a full SSD.
  5. MacGamerHQ macrumors member


    Sep 25, 2012
    Lyon, France
    I would return in a heartbeat too!

    I mean, graphically speaking, you will get a more capable machine and will be able to play any game with better fps and / or highest settings....
    I bet the guys at barefeats will have some benchmarks proving this soon.

    To switch will not cost you much more, so even if you were not concerned by gaming, I would advice to return it and get the new one, because everything in the new iMac is upgraded (don't forget we have been waiting for a real iMac refresh for a while now)....

  6. TallManNY macrumors 601


    Nov 5, 2007
    I'd return it as well. But keep in mind that we don't know the pricing for the top graphics card yet. But I've head speculation that it is very expensive. You should expect it to be at least $200 more than your current machine price. It is probably worth it for future proofing. But for most games that you play right now, if you bootcamp, the card you have will play them in native resolution at high settings. Crysis or Witcher 2, maybe not, but most will play just as good in bootcamp with what you have as with the new machine.
  7. Dirtyharry50, Oct 24, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2012

    Dirtyharry50 macrumors 68000


    May 17, 2012
    I'll take your word on that as the local WINE expert if someone wanted to run games in OS X using Wineskin, etc. However, for native OS X games, games ported to OS X, games run in a Parallels Windows XP virtual machine and games run in Windows 7 using bootcamp, I have seen no issues at all whatsoever with the 6970 and AMD drivers. I've had nothing but positive experience and performance I'm very happy with.

    Both companies at times have a history of driver issues and most recently, Nvidia's drivers have been a significant problem running Call of Duty Black OPS I believe it was? So other than WINE, I don't think the differences from a drivers perspective are a big deal.

    I do recall years ago when I ran Linux on a PC full time and was dependent on WINE to play games that Nvidia offered better driver support as far as that went. Nowadays, a Mac user is not dependent at all on WINE so it's very much a YMMV thing as to whether somebody wants to use it or not to avoid rebooting into Windows, etc.

    From what I've read you've done a fine job of making WINE easier to use and with more elegant results in OS X but from what you are telling me here and given that I run with a 6970, I shouldn't bother as it will be too problematic to be worthwhile. I'll be better off sticking with bootcamp because it just works.
  8. doh123 macrumors 65816

    Dec 28, 2009
    There are ways to make things work.. native games, and how Parallels and such handle things, they circumvent the issues so you don't have to worry about it. There are hacks for Wine to do that too, but sometimes you need to modify things on a game by game basis because it won't work right or the same for every piece of software you want to run. I'm just saying if you are buying now and have the choice between nvidia and AMD... I'd go nvidia.

    I haven't seen the technical details of why Aspyr had so many problems with Black Ops on nvidia, but I have a feeling there are more issues behind the scenes than we will ever know, and there was most likely other ways to get it to work, but they chose to go the route of getting the drivers changed. There are always bugs in drivers... which is why new drivers come out.

    But of course running Windows software in Windows will always be less problematic :p Some of us do not run Windows just to play some game though.
  9. Dirtyharry50 macrumors 68000


    May 17, 2012
    Well, I really can't blame you there. I am not very fond of windows or rebooting myself. I'll have to give Wineskin a try at some point. For the time being I keep wasting all my game time playing WoW but I'm about due for a change already. I go in cycles with that where i like it then tire of it. Maybe I'll see if I have any luck with Majesty 2 or Jade Empire. I've been looking at playing those next.

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