So... We've seen the i5 and i7 Benchmarks... Now what?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by alywa, Nov 12, 2009.

  1. alywa macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 6, 2004
    #1
    Alright.... we're finally getting somewhere.

    For my 27" imac I had completely ruled out the C2D, and was going to order an i5 with 4GB ram, and add 4 additional GB myself at a future date...

    Now that the i7 benchmarks have been posted, the results look like it may well be worth the extra $200. Not that the i5 is too shabby, but the i7 does look significantly more powerful.

    What are other people's thoughts? Both computers are completely overkill for my needs, but I plan on using it for a long time (currently using a imac G5 rev B... nearing 5 years on it).
     
  2. dirwood macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2009
    #2
    It depends on what you are going to be using the computer for...

    You could pretend you're buying the i7 to "future-proof" the computer, but face it, most people will probably be looking into a new computer in 3-4 years anyway :rolleyes:
     
  3. morficus macrumors member

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    Oct 26, 2009
    Location:
    North East, USA
    #3
    haha, very true.

    unless you have the need to run intense multi-threading applications.... I say go with the i5 and put those $200 toward the extra RAM (and AppleCare).

    those are my $0.02
     
  4. TMRaven macrumors 68020

    TMRaven

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    Nov 5, 2009
    #4
    I just wanna see a teardown of the i7 model and know the possibility of using 1333mhz ram in it.
     
  5. cloudstrife13 macrumors member

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    Aug 13, 2007
    #5
    The i5 and i7 have a built in memory controller supporting 1333mhz DDR3 RAM. Find and install 1333mhz DDR3 RAM and it'll run no problem. Someone needs to bench it with the higher speed.
     
  6. madwolf macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2009
    #6
    I recommend buying a computer suitable for the tasks you'll use it for now and in a few months time. If you won't profit from i7 now then probably you never will. i7 is only slightly faster over i5 and in 5 years time it won't matter, they both will be slow :p

    When using both computers side by side for surfing the web you won't notice ANY difference. For cpu intensive tasks (like video encoding for example) the i7 will encode a movie in 55 minutes, while i5 in 60 minutes (I completely made up those times, but there won't be a bigger difference, it could be smaller). You have to decide for yourself if those 5 minutes is worth $200 for you :)
     
  7. jeporter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2009
    #7
    i5 vs i7

    I was speaking to an Apple rep at my local resellers yesterday. I will be buying a 27" today and asked him which CPU was appropriate. My worst case scenario is having Photoshop, Aperture, Dreamweaver, Firefox, and various small utilities active at any given time. His advice is that unless I am planning on performing intense video work (large rendering, etc...) the i5 will be more than fine for the foreseeable future. It's got to be better than my current G5!

    I tend to agree. Tonight I order the 27" i5, 8Gig Ram, 2 TB drive, wired keyboard, Applecare. It will be a Merry Xmas.
     
  8. 53x12 macrumors 68000

    53x12

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2009
    #8
    Why not order the 4gb of Ram and order the other 4gb of Ram yourself and install it. It will save you +$100.
     
  9. PeckhamBog macrumors 6502

    PeckhamBog

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    Nov 28, 2007
    Location:
    London
    #9
    I thought I read an article linked to the i5 i7 quandry showing the i7 was slower on some apps because the hyperthreading caused a delay during cycles with the virtual cores on non multicore designed apps. (Sorry for such a badly phrased sentence. Gordon Brown's got nothing to worry about; at least this is input through a keyboard)

    So I was looking more to the i5.
     
  10. morficus macrumors member

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    Oct 26, 2009
    Location:
    North East, USA
    #10
    I fully agree with this statement. Not even 5 years.... maybe closer to 10-12months hehe.


    hhm... I haven't seen anything about this, but theoretically it could be true.
    I don't see it being an issue in the future... since the Grand Central Dispatcher is suppose to take care of all of the thread scheduling, right?
     
  11. Badger^2 macrumors 68000

    Badger^2

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    Oct 29, 2009
    Location:
    Sacramento
    #11
    I do everything jetporter does on a 2.4 C2D just fine...

    And not a bunch of crappy 72 dpi photos and/or a few small 2 color brochures.

    Way. More. Than. That.

    For the last 2 years, its never let me down.

    Im interested in the i5 and the larger screen, but honestly even the 3.06 C2D with the much, much faster video would be a damn big step up.

    Figure I can get $800+ for my 24" 2.4 and that means a measly $1000 to upgrade.

    Wait 3 years repeat. $333 a year for a new mac every 3 years is $1 a day. I will start saving now =)
     
  12. Zathu macrumors regular

    Zathu

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    Nov 16, 2006
    Location:
    Maryland
    #12
    I'm baffled why so many are jumping on the extra $200 boat for the i7. I saved that cash and bought a secondary computer with it (10v).

    We've seen gaming benchmarks that don't care. The i5 is already extremely fast. I can't think of a usage scenario where the i7 would be noticeable except for media encoding.
     
  13. dirwood macrumors member

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    Nov 5, 2009
    #13
    Well... in all seriousness, what does it matter to you why others would pick a more powerful processor? :confused:
     
  14. Zathu macrumors regular

    Zathu

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    Nov 16, 2006
    Location:
    Maryland
    #14
    I'd just like to know what real-world disadvantages of the i5 is to the people who ordered the i7. The i7 seems wildly popular here and I feel that I'm missing something.
     
  15. dirwood macrumors member

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    Nov 5, 2009
    #15
    It's the best available to the platform. For most users that bought it, that's basically it.
     
  16. gnasher729 macrumors P6

    gnasher729

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2005
    #16
    You could post a link to the article, but it seems very unlikely. This used to be the case with the very first hyperthreading implementations when the OS was not aware of hyperthreading: If you have four cores and eight virtual cores 1a, 1b, 2a, 2b, 3a, 3b, 4a and 4b, the operating system must use four different numbers if four or fewer threads are actively running; any modern OS knows this.

    So unless the OS is amazingly stupid, up to four active threads will run exactly the same with or without hyperthreading. And with five or more active threads, you will gain.
     
  17. 53x12 macrumors 68000

    53x12

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2009
    #17
    Also the issue of "not being able to" upgrade the CPU in the future. While it should be theoretically possible since it is socketed, we don't know how this will affect warranty (will probably void it) and the issue of firmware support for a different chip (say i7 870). If one doesn't want the drama of opening up the computer and the hassle of voiding the warranty and making the new CPU work, might as well get the fastest CPU you can put in the thing.
     
  18. Zathu macrumors regular

    Zathu

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    Nov 16, 2006
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    Maryland
    #18
    Fair enough :)
     
  19. nicroma macrumors 6502

    nicroma

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    Jun 20, 2009
    Location:
    Midwest, USA
    #19
    I bought it because I wanted the best an iMac had to offer. I like to keep my computers for awhile and get every bit out of them, a lot longer than 3 years like others are saying. That just seems laughable to me to spend money on a computer that often.
     
  20. robby818 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 2, 2007
    #20
    The i5 is the best bang for the buck. I would look at installing a SSD in the near future for a big boost in performance. I started using one in my MacBook Pro and it is by far the most noticeable upgrade I have ever done to any machine. RAM, Video cards, even CPU replacements don't hold a candle to the immediate speed up from a SSD. It would be great if the iMac could internally accommodate both a SSD and a standard hard drive. I'd use the SSD for OSX and the spinning drive for my pictures and music.
     
  21. jeporter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2009
    #21
    It's $180 for the extra 4 GB. When you factor the cost of the RAM from a 3rd party, shipping, and my time (>$75/hour) I'll just let Apple take care of it for me.

    As I grow older, and my time becomes more precious to me, I find myself writing checks more & more for things I used to do myself. And I'm good with that :)
     
  22. Techhie macrumors 65816

    Techhie

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    The hub of stupidity
    #22
    I didn't think that this was possible to do given throttles placed on the mempry slots themselves, but I guess it makes sense when comparing to higher-clocked CPUs in the same socket. Does this mean that faster ram will also work in the Mac Pro? (ECC)
     
  23. iMerlin macrumors 6502a

    iMerlin

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    May 13, 2008
    #23
    I agree with this most of the time. But in these new iMacs, anyone can install the RAM chips, I bought 4 gb from Crucial for 100 bucks, saved 80-100 form the Apple cost.
     
  24. 53x12 macrumors 68000

    53x12

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    Feb 16, 2009
    #24
    It would literally take <10min to swap out the Ram yourself. You could get the Ram yourself for <$90 shipped (good Ram like Crucial). To save ~$100 for 10min of work seems like a good thing to me. Unless of course you make >$600/hr. But I understand if you don't feel comfortable doing it.
     
  25. TMRaven macrumors 68020

    TMRaven

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    Nov 5, 2009
    #25
    I know I'm ordering the i7 variant for one reason in particular: hd video editing and x264 encoding.
    It would also be nice to tun some future games like starcraf2 etc with best settings as possible.

    My other tasks (large photoshop graphics, web browsing, general multitasking) can easily be handled with core2duo.

    But I too will be purchasing an i7 with the mindset of keeping it for 5-7 years.
     

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