the 09 imac 24 + the 9400m

Discussion in 'iMac' started by kyee, May 9, 2009.

  1. kyee macrumors newbie

    May 9, 2009
    Hey everyone. I'm about to buy an imac 24 but have a question.

    I'm a web designer + will be using the mac for work, so I can retire my poor macbook to general use instead of work.. Also, I want to be able to play some games on it (specifically Left 4 Dead, counter strike). I am planning on buying the entry level 24 inch with 2.66ghz 4GB RAM + the 9400 card in.

    Will this play the games I want well enough? if not, are there any upgrades I can buy that will help? Sorry to sound so noob but I've always had macbooks + macbook pros.

    thanks for any replies in advance..
  2. trip1ex macrumors 68000

    Jan 10, 2008
    It will probably play the Source engine games decent enough at settings that look alright. CS is old enough so it should do better in that than L4D.

    But the 9400M is not a gaming gpu. It's a great gaming gpu from an integrated graphics/shared memory perspective. But from a gaming video card perspective it's not that great.

    If you're willing to tone down settings and play at whatever you need to play in order to have a good experience than you'll be fine.

    If you want to force your will upon the thing then you will be disappointed.
  3. PurrBall macrumors 65816


    Oct 25, 2007
    You probably need the GT 120 at least to play L4D well.
  4. MacAndy74 macrumors 65816

    Mar 19, 2009
    Judging by the specifications of the nVidia GT120 and GT130, I think I would get the ATi 4850 option. :eek:
  5. njmax macrumors newbie

    May 8, 2009
  6. polya80 macrumors member

    Apr 13, 2009
    Cambridge, MA
    if you are willing to pay for the GT130, you might as well throw in another $50 for the ATI 4850 card seeing that the hard freezing issue seem that has been plaguing the 09 imac has been fixed by the recent firmware update.
  7. njmax macrumors newbie

    May 8, 2009
    which models were affected by this?
  8. airbusking macrumors member


    May 11, 2009
    Deep in the Heart of Texas
    Thanks for an excellent question. I too am seriously considering make the switch from my PC to the iMac 24" also. The 9400 card concerns me, I am not a heavy graphics user, occasional gamer, lots of photos (actually the wife does that). The system is solid but I am hesitant becasue the card (I think) is under powered for the rest of the system. Is the price jump up to the GT 120 worth it?

    Also, thanks to the forum. I have been researching this for couple of months and value the experts and honest opinions you share!
  9. spencecb macrumors 6502a


    Nov 20, 2003
    My input?

    Don't get the integrated card.

    The GT 120 is just fine. More than fine. I've had no problems running (relatively) demanding games on my iMac via OS X and Windows 7 and the iMac has not even hiccuped.

    Will it play top of the line games without a hitch two years from now? Doubtful. But will it be a powerhouse today for others to be jealous of? Yes.
  10. tvp macrumors member

    Mar 9, 2009
    I didn't upgrade the card on mine and I have the 9400m. It's not bad. I play COD4 and my boyfriend plays WOW. Plus I do some photography and webdesign, as well as a bit of video editing. The quality is good and everything runs seamlessly. Could it be better? Probably. But I'm fine with how it is.
  11. Sambo110 macrumors 68000

    Mar 12, 2007
    I have the worst model iMac from the last generation (Ati Radeon 2400 XT etc), I can max everything in CS:S except AA and get good frame rates, not entirely sure how high but never under 30.
  12. Macrovertigo macrumors member


    Jan 25, 2008
    thanks for helping me lean toward a refurbished MP vs new iMac

    Every time I tallied up the price of an iMac with any extras including the ATI 4850 card, I found myself looking more and more at a refurbished previous generation Mac Pro from Apple store for similar prices - apparently a decent refurbished MP can be a better gaming machine, and it is going to be 'future proof' longer (you can't just change the graphics card in your new iMac, you can in your refurbished Mac Pro). Now, if I can only wait until after June - to see if any developments then will lower the price of "refurbisheds".
  13. LagunaSol macrumors 601


    Apr 3, 2003
    I've done the same exercise as you, but I could not find a refurbished Mac Pro with equivalent specs (particularly the video card) for anywhere close to the price of the 24" iMac (especially when you factor in the cost of a display). The cheapest refurbished Mac Pro on Apple's site is $2,149, and that's with less RAM, a smaller hard drive, and a much slower video card than what I got in my $2,000 iMac. Add a few hundred bucks for a good 24" display and you're a good $500 over the price of the new iMac, with the lesser HD, RAM and video card as mentioned.
  14. sporadicMotion macrumors 65816


    Oct 18, 2008
    Your girlfriends place
    Those games play fine on a 9400. I was really into L4D for a while and it ran really damn well on a MacBook with a 9400. I ran it with the graphics just above the mid way point and at 1280x800.

    If you keep your machine for years at a time, then maybe something a little more robust is in order... but in a world where you can unload a used mac for almost what you paid for it 6 months later, just get the 9400 and sell it to upgrade in 6 months. I spend $200 every 6 months and it ensures I have a current mac and I never EVER need to buy Apple care (which is that $200).

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