Thoughts on my Purchase? 21.5 iMac w/ Fusion

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Johnf1285, Dec 1, 2012.

  1. Johnf1285 macrumors 6502a


    Dec 25, 2010
    New Jersey
    A bit of a lengthy post, just as a friendly heads up! ;)

    I ordered this yesterday morning:

    21.5" iMac with GT 650M
    Fusion Drive
    Apple Care
    Magic Trackpad

    I've been beating myself up over whether or not I should've went with the i7 and 16gb of ram. The thing is, the part of me that wants "the best" is having a hard time convincing the part of me that understands I have a simple work load. This is what I would be doing at any given time, but not all at once:

    • Web Design which consists of using basic text/code editors and running multiple browsers with many tabs and windows open. Additionally, it also encompasses using Pixelmator (the best Photoshop alternative I have worked with yet!) to create small icons and graphics, as well as manipulate and edit larger photos and images. I will also discover an Adobe Illustrator alternative soon that I plan to use for a similar "light" work load - nothing would consist of hundreds of layers.
    • Usual office activities using word processors or spreadsheet type programs (ahem, I mean apps). Although these days Google Docs has everything I could ever want on that front. I still enjoy using iWork though, looking forward to a 2013 edition.
    • Typical web browsing and YouTube watching.
    • Casual gaming consisting of primarily Blizzard titles (World of Warcraft, Diablo III, Starcraft II). Some indie games. Maybe some older games. Basically I don't want to install Windows nor will I be playing the latest and greatest first person shooters or MMO that has textures out the waazoo. Although if the rumors of an Elder Scrolls MMO coming to Mac is true, I will be purchasing it! :D
    • iTunes as well as bit torrent and the occasional encoding of FLAC files.
    • iPhoto for simple personal photo storage/editing
    I don't do anything video related. No encoding or decoding (but sometimes I deal with converting FLAC to MP3 or AAC, but not too often). My last powerful machine that did all I could ever want was my PC with an i5 2500k and 8gb of ram and many other bells and whistles in the storage front and GPU department.

    I want to get the most out of this machine since I do not want to upgrade until it is painfully slow and barely functioning. Tacking on another $400 for power and potential I may never use is tough to justify. The only option that seemed totally worthy was the Fusion Drive as I was originally banking on a pure 256gb option on the higher end 21.5" before it was announced.

    What are your thoughts, suggestions, comments, or recommendations? I guess I need reassurance that I made the right choice!
  2. MisterKeeks macrumors 68000


    Nov 15, 2012
    I think you made the right choice. You occasionally might have benefited from the extra power, but overall, I don't think it would be worth $400.
  3. MeFromHere macrumors 6502

    Oct 11, 2012
    Congratulations on the your new iMac!!

    I think you picked the right options for your workload. The Fusion drive should make a big difference in day-to-day use. From what I've had explained to me, the graphics should be fine; more would be overkill.

    The 8 GB of memory might start to show some strain in a few years, when the OS, browsers, and other common apps will be bigger and greedier. You can add memory later if you need it. Additional memory will probably be inexpensive, but many folks will opt to pay for professional installation so it won't be dirt cheap.
  4. Johnf1285 thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Dec 25, 2010
    New Jersey
    Yeah it seems like my current work load and the specs I chose should get me through the next 3-4 years no problem. By that time, if I didn't ward off the itch to upgrade to a new machine, I would then consider opening it up.

    Once it starts to show it's age and the Apple Care is long expired, then I would tinker further with the internals. I have no problem popping it open and swapping out the i5 3470s with an i7 3770s (they'll be on the cheap 3-4 years from now), applying fresh high performance thermal paste to the CPU and GPU, two 8gb 1600mhz DDR3 chips, and maybe even a higher capacity HDD in the 2.5" form factor and even a higher capacity compatible flash drive for Fusion. Also, by that time there may even be kits from iFixit to replace the adhesive tape! We shall see!

    I am pretty hands on with things and have no fear opening the machine up. I just don't want to do it while under warranty/AppleCare. Not to mention my wife would be so pissed if I had that thing disassembled while under warranty! :eek:
  5. shiny-blanket macrumors member

    Sep 21, 2007
    @Johnf1285 From one web designer to another, you may want to check out Sketch from Bohemian Coding as a better alternative to Pixelmator and Photoshop.
  6. Johnf1285 thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Dec 25, 2010
    New Jersey
    Wow this looks like a great App! If my Christmas wishlist of multiple App Store gift cards come true, I will be getting this!
  7. MacWanter macrumors member

    Oct 23, 2012
    I think you should have stuck with these options:

    16 GB RAM
    Fusion Drive
    Trackpad (Optional)

    Lasts longer, better built, and apple care isn't what you need the first year.

    But good for you, with your iMac and all.

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