The Verge reviews the Retina iMac

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Charlemagne, Oct 28, 2014.

  1. Charlemagne macrumors newbie

    Oct 25, 2008
    Pretty good review:

    Seem to suggest folks avoid getting the base model - and even with the high end model, don't seem that confident it will keep up 3-5 years down the line.

    Wondering if I should get a refurbed new Mac Pro instead and keep my existing 27" monitor. They were more impressed with the new Mac Pro performance. Or just wait until a 2nd gen (which they also mentioned).
  2. Charlemagne thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 25, 2008
    Some more opinions in case anybody is interested in the retina iMac for audio work:

    - A number of folks have reported it lags a bit in Logic (you can change Logic to run in low resolution, but that defeats the purpose of the screen)

    - Multiple reports about the fan coming out fairly loudly during complex Logic and PT sessions. Possible issue if you record in the same room.

    Not sure if these are Yosemite optimization issues or due to the power needed to run the 5k screen.
  3. petvas macrumors 601


    Jul 20, 2006
    Mannheim, Germany
    I have the base configuration (plus 16GB RAM and 512GB SSD), and the only lag I am seeing is in Mission Control. Apart from that the machine is very fast. I am sure the lag in Mission Control is a Yosemite issue that will be resolved with 10.10.1 soon..This lag is being experienced on other Mac computers too..
  4. leenak macrumors 68020

    Mar 10, 2011
    Arstechnica gave it a pretty good review in terms of gaming. But all I can say is that I'm pretty happy with mine. Also, the nMP isn't a bad choice although I'd wait until that is updated as well since you also can't swap out the video cards there.
  5. Charlemagne thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 25, 2008
  6. Seramir macrumors member


    Nov 10, 2006
    Finally, a reviewer that states the truth—from a normal sitting distance (more than six inches away from the display), the difference between the Retina and non-Retina 27" iMac is negligible and you can barely tell the differences.
  7. petvas macrumors 601


    Jul 20, 2006
    Mannheim, Germany
    What truth? My eyes are not perfect and I can see the difference all the time when using my iMac from my normal viewing distance. Everything is so sharp, pictures and text look crystal clear.
    There are people who care for that and people who don't. All other iMacs look pale in comparison and seem blurry. If that doesn't bother you then ok. I want to have the best possible display. I sit in front of my iMac 10-12 hours a day so the Retina display does make a big difference.
    That's the truth. If you are not prepared to pay the price for the Retina display, then I can understand that, but don't try to justify not purchasing it by saying the difference is small.
  8. 5iMacs macrumors regular

    Oct 25, 2014
    I agree that it is physically difficult to sit 6 inches from the display, also using the keyboard and mouse would be a strain. But at 16 inches from the screen, which is quite easy to arrange, I find that I can take advantage of the resolution in many ways:

    -- More lines of text in coding and data analysis tasks
    -- Better legibility of PDFs with small elements like formulas and footnotes and musical staff markings
    -- watching HD youtube/itunes videos without expanding them in order to see details or read small text in them
    -- viewing a much wider area with the same level of detail in maps

    etc, etc,

    As long as you can get to 16 inches from your screen, and of course this may not be practical in all cases, the 5k screen is effectively a *larger* screen than the non-retina 27", once you start to take advantage of it.
  9. Melodeath macrumors 6502a

    Dec 9, 2009
    More info on this? I would be getting the Retina iMac for audio production work. I was hoping to get something quieter than my 2010 MBP for this exact reason (I record in the same room as my computer)
  10. robgendreau macrumors 68040

    Jul 13, 2008
    Finally? Retina has been around forever and this isn't exactly news if you understand the whole point behind retina. And it's not true, even accounting for vision differences. Don't take my anecdotal possibly biased point of view for it; see the calculator I cited below.

    As a rough guide, pixels on the riMac begin to resolve at 16" from the screen for a person with 20-20 vision (same as the MBP 15"). For the regular iMac it's 32". That's a big difference. From what I've read the average user sits 24" from the screen.

    At the "best" setting because of the way the riMac displays UI elements it might be a bit different. But the difference is definitely dramatic. I have the riMac running a good 27" IPS monitor right next to it, at 2560x1440. And I've had to do some juggling to make it worth looking at, since I'm now closer to my iMac.

    Also, I use a stand up desk. So my Mac is a bit more in my face than it was when I had a sit down desk. I noticed I gravitated to just about 16"; closer (which you can do) is front row theater like. But I also find myself moving closer to see detail, like the postmark on the Mail icon. With my old iMac I found myself leaning back.

    It's true that you have to consider ergonomics. You would be wasting your time if you had to sit 36" from your screen. Here's a calculator so you can figure out what distance is "retina," and there are others online to calculate sitting distance for home theater setups.


    On the fan, see the Verge review; guy found it essentially silent using Premiere and After Effects.

    I'm wondering if those who say they are hearing fans have spinners instead of SSD only. I've got the fan going right now at 1200 and don't hear anything, but it's not an absolutely quiet room.
  11. zAAz macrumors newbie

    Oct 24, 2014
    Anandtech post their review sometime next week. From their twitter:
    "Look for the iPad (Air) late this week, and iMac next week"

    I have chosen not to buy it before I read their review. I just hope their testmachine has M295X and i7, because that is what i'm interested in.
  12. firsmith macrumors member

    Oct 16, 2014
    I have a 2009 24" set up and an RImac touching as I'm working to transfer files. It is indeed night and day. The older screen looks 20years old in comparison. It's as big a jump as DVD/Bluray.

    It doesn't matter how close/far you are, they are worlds apart in look and functionality
  13. FredT2 macrumors 6502a

    Mar 18, 2009
    You sound like the climate change deniers. The vast majority of reviewers characterize the screen as incredible, but one guy sees it differently and his view is the "truth".
  14. BenTrovato macrumors 68030


    Jun 29, 2012
    Pretty nice review.. the Verge seems to make it enjoyable. I wonder what's causing all the stuttering in Mission Control. I don't think it's a lack of power from an i7.
  15. firsmith macrumors member

    Oct 16, 2014
    it's a software issue, I believe it's been confirmed as such
  16. Col Vandal macrumors member

    Sep 2, 2010
    OK, so even if you take the screen away as a wash, which I don't think it is, is the price for the other upgrades worth it? I mean for a maxed out version and Thunderbolt 2?
  17. firsmith macrumors member

    Oct 16, 2014
    I was buying a new Imac either way, it's been 6 years. If they had upgraded the non retina, or lowered the price of last years, I might have gone with that. But selling last years computer undiscounted meant the RImac was really the only option for me.
  18. Col Vandal macrumors member

    Sep 2, 2010
    At this point, I tend to agree. Seems like Apple should either update last year's offerings or drop the price. I also wonder if they will actually do that sometime soon.

    Seems to make it really hard on those of us who have 6-year-old Macs.
  19. thekev macrumors 604


    Aug 5, 2010
    That's partly because you're staring at an old display. Your 24" doesn't look anything like it looked when it was new due to the aging that displays undergo. Of course even taking that into account, the new one may still be a significant change. 24" has been stuck at 1920x1200 for a while, and I can notice minor aliasing at that screen size and resolution.
  20. robgendreau macrumors 68040

    Jul 13, 2008
    The review was sort of odd. It rather ignored the actual math of seeing pixels. Density is density, distance is distance. Whether the difference is worth it to you is subjective, but that basic math isn't.

    He said that high res content is almost identical. Images are, in fact, twice as big on the riMac depending on what resolution you're using. So I can look at almost a whole photo pixel for pixel at 16" on the riMac; on my regular iMac it's twice as big, and to avoid seeing pixels I'm back at twice the distance. That's not a normal distance for most people for work, but I'd agree for viewing Netflix and whatnot probably fine.

    The same sort of argument could have been made about SD TV vs HD.

    Here's a test. At a foot I can read the highway number in the Maps icon. I can NEVER resolve it on my regular iMac's screen. Not important, and maybe not worth $2500, but remarkable.
  21. tillsbury macrumors 65816

    Dec 24, 2007
    Blimey. I need glasses and it's still night and day. Anyone who says this should really be introduced to the benefits of opticians.
  22. Charlemagne thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 25, 2008
    It really is unfortunate that Apple didn't drop the prices on the non-retina iMacs. That would've made the decision much easier for many folks. As it stands now, the Retina offers enough disregarding the screen to make the upgrade worth it to many people - the question is, is the non-retina machine a more robust and stable machine (in terms of lag, heat, noise, etc.)?
  23. theSeb macrumors 604


    Aug 10, 2010
    Poole, England
    Gizmodo is the go to site for reputable reviews and totally legit rumours.

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