Speccing a 24" iMac

Discussion in 'iMac' started by 7084, Jan 17, 2008.

  1. 7084 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2006
    #1
    Hi,

    I've recently really got my heart set on owning one of the 24in Alu. iMacs, but thought i'd come here for a bit of advice about customising the model in the BTO options.

    Processor
    Starting off with the 2.4 ghz, is it worth the extra £150 to get the extra 0.4 ghz? I notice the higher processor has "Extreme!!11!!" tagged on the end, does this actually mean anything?

    Hardrive
    Going to up this to at least 500gb as the price increase seems reasonable, but having access to no external drives, i'm not sure whether I should take this higher, and can't work out if i'm getting value for money for the higher capacity drives. I don't particularly want more wires than i need comin out my mac.

    RAM
    Getting the standard 1gb, maxing it out from elsewhere, thats a given.

    Wireless Mouse/Keyboard
    I've never used wireless peripherals beyond my 360/Wii controllers, how do they perform? Long battery life? Reliable? I love the idea of a wire free connection to my computer. The lack of a full size keyboard doesn't really bother me having used an iBook as my main computer for the last few years.

    Anyway, they're my main queries at the moment. And this isn't so much about getting a computer to fulfil my needs, as i'm sure a lower specced mac could potentially do that, I just want to get the most out of my mac, and good value for money. I guess I want confiormation that I should just max the hell out of the machine, while discussing the pros and cons at the same time!

    Thanks appleheads!

    7084
     
  2. Slip macrumors 6502a

    Slip

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2007
    Location:
    Wiltshire, England
    #2
    The difference between the normal processor and the 'Extreme' tagged one is just the higher clock speed and in PC's you can overclock it a lot happier, but due to Apple using an EFI rather than a BIOS then you can't overclock Macs.
    If I were you then 500GB would be fine but with the increased style of externals, having a high capacity drive may be better value in the long run aswell as being able to use it for Time Machine.
    Like you said, maxing the RAM is a given.
    And I can't really comment on the wireless Apple perephials as I have never owned any but from what I've heard they seem to be fine.
     
  3. gazfocus macrumors 68000

    gazfocus

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2008
    Location:
    Liverpool, UK
    #3
    CPU: If this was a PC, then yeah the extreme would be worth the extra money (The Extreme CPU's are unlocked meaning they have a higher overclock ability...not so important for the Mac).

    Hdd: I would upgrade to the best you can afford (although I don't feel the 1TB is worth that price). The hard drive in an Imac is very difficult to replace as you have to remove the glass off the screen to access the internals.

    Wireless: I love the Wireless Mice... they're great, but I'm not so sure about the wireless keyboards. My only issue with the keyboards is that they aren't full keyboards (They are effectively Macbook keyboards), and I prefer having the use of the number pad. If they made a wireless full size keyboard, I'd buy one straight away... Just wish I'd bought the Wireless white keyboard before they updated them.

    If you do decided to go for the 2.8GHz, do a BTO on the 2.4GHz model because it works out about £60 cheaper ($120 ish)
     
  4. IgnatiusTheKing macrumors 68040

    IgnatiusTheKing

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2007
    Location:
    das Fort
    #4
    I got the wireless keyboard and didn't like it because I use the number pad all the time. Apple was kind enough to send me a wired keyboard free after about a week, and didn't even want to wireless one back (I now use it on my PS3).

    As for the wireless MM, I bought one to use with my laptop about a year ago. I like it, but the right-click goes out a lot, so I mostly use the wired one with my iMac.

    Battery life is great on both.
     
  5. ray648 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2008
    #5
    Im not sure if this is true anymore, but back in the days of pentium 4 when the extreme edition processors first surfaced, they had more cache than the regular ones. This ment that a 3ghz pentium 4 extreme edition would actually run faster than a normal 3ghz pentium 4.

    As for the wireless: I have wireless mice on both my imac and macbook and have never had any problems with either. The response and battery life are both excellent. When you do finally run the mouse out of battery though, its interesting. I found the buttons stopped working before the movement, resulting in me getting confused briefly while it ignored all my clicks till I realised what was going on.
     
  6. nosey313 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2007
    #6
    2.4 vs 2.8

    I'm going to pull the trigger later today on one of the 24". I still need to decide which one. I'd much rather get the 2.4 so I can max out the ram myself and get a larger external. The question is whether or not i'll miss the 0.4 ghz. I plan on using the iMac as a starter computer for a side business. In addition to web surfing and email, I'll be using Premier and Photoshop for some light design work and wedding/birthday slideshow. I figure that by the time the business surpasses weekend warrior status, I'll have enough for a MacPro and an ACD. So what do you all think? Any help is greatly appreciated. I'm really pulling my hair out over this decision because I want make sure I'm not short changing myself now and adversely affecting resale value by not getting the 2.8. Thanks a bunch!:cool:
     
  7. Slip macrumors 6502a

    Slip

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2007
    Location:
    Wiltshire, England
    #7
    Put the money towards 4GB of RAM, you'll see a much bigger speed increase in Photoshop with more RAM than 400MHz
     
  8. nosey313 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2007
    #8
    Thanks. What about using Premier?
     
  9. errol macrumors 6502

    errol

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2008
    #9
    I recommend getting the 2.4, getting the RAM from newegg, HD is your choice, wireless KB only if you don't need the number pad, and I don't recommend the mighty mouse. I'd get the microsoft bluetooth 8000 mouse instead.
     
  10. Slip macrumors 6502a

    Slip

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2007
    Location:
    Wiltshire, England
    #10
    Same story :)
    Almost all application benefit from more RAM, especially intensive ones such as graphics
     
  11. paulgl macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2008
    #11
    i am trying to get the same 24 2.4 imac...IF, i got it with 2 gb

    Then, added 2 gb's RAM, purchased from newegg: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820144087

    why is it so cheap? $64 vs. $850 from apple? is it easy to "install" or a pain in the ass?

    also, 500 gb vs. 750 gb vs. 1 tb drive for photoshop/graphics only?

    THANKS!!!
     
  12. Slip macrumors 6502a

    Slip

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2007
    Location:
    Wiltshire, England
    #12
    Apple have always overcharged on their memory. Chances are it's not that different from the ones from Newegg.
    And installation in the new iMacs is a doddle. Lie it on it's screen, unscrew the memory panel and pop the new lot in. There's a concise guide in the iMac manual.

    It really depends on what you need. I would probably go with the age old technique of going for the one in the middle.
     
  13. fluidedge macrumors 65816

    fluidedge

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2007
    #13
    remember the 0.4GHz is across both cores equalling a 0.8GHz overall. I myself went for the 2.4GHz and spent the extra on 4GB RAM.

    PS - when installing the RAM give the little plastic strip a *real* pull (don't worry about pulling it out, it is strong enough) I wasn't giving it enough of a tug and it took me about 20 mins to have the courage to pull it hard enough!
     
  14. bluedoggiant macrumors 68030

    bluedoggiant

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2007
    Location:
    MD & ATL,GA
    #14
    please tell me why we buy the core 2 extreme. I'm not the only one, there is a lot of people on these forums who bought the C2E. and there are a lot of threads comparing them, and all of them say its not worth the extra .4ghz. Why would apple be selling them, why would people be buying them. I have noticed a difference between a 2gb 2.4ghz imac at the apple store, and a 2.8ghz 2gb ram on my desk. the 2ghz in my opinion isn't a good desktop computer. the 2.4ghz is a very good processor for the mainstream user with some high end needs, the 2.8 is what i would call, a bumbed down intel xeon with 2 cores, and having a mobile processor. I read somewhere that the old gen of mac pros (2.66ghz), the 2.8 imac actually outperformed to 4 core horse.

    Period.
     
  15. Slip macrumors 6502a

    Slip

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2007
    Location:
    Wiltshire, England
    #15
    You seem to have missed my point entirely. I was comparing the 4GB of RAM to 2GB, not the different processor clock speeds.
     
  16. bluedoggiant macrumors 68030

    bluedoggiant

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2007
    Location:
    MD & ATL,GA
    #16
    Well, wherever you said it in this thread, you say there is very little difference between the 2.4 and 2.8. anyways, dont want to start an argument, back on topic.
     
  17. Slip macrumors 6502a

    Slip

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2007
    Location:
    Wiltshire, England
    #17
    Hardly saying definitively there is no difference, I think that's quite a fair point ^
    But like you said, let's stay on topic
     
  18. je1ani macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2007
    #18
    You're telling me a 2.8Ghz Mobile out performs a 2.66 Quad Core Desktop processor? I think you need your head checked :p
     
  19. bluedoggiant macrumors 68030

    bluedoggiant

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2007
    Location:
    MD & ATL,GA
    #19
    I read it somewhere:p.
     

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