Torn between 21.5 and 27 imac ram help

Discussion in 'iMac' started by DTMfan, Sep 19, 2017.

  1. DTMfan macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2010
    #1
    Hey guys,

    I'm coming from a 2011 Imac 4GB machine that has finally started slowing down. I planned to purchase a 21.5 Imac 4K with 16GB of ram. I was thinking for our family's basic use..web browsing/ youtube / and occasional PS edit use that we could def get by with 8GB of ram for now, but down the road I'd want to upgrade. I see the 27 allows easy upgrade down the road. I'm basically torn as I know getting the 21.5 with 8GB would probably start slowing down in the years ahead with no easy chance to upgrade it. Also I"m unsure of being stuck with just 16GB going forward for 7-8 years that I plan to at least keep this computer. The flip side is that I could use the 27" 8GB and easily upgrade the ram down the road.

    Any opinions advice greatly appreciated
     
  2. nambuccaheadsau, Sep 19, 2017
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2017

    nambuccaheadsau macrumors 68000

    nambuccaheadsau

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2007
    Location:
    Nambucca Heads Australia
    #2
    Suggest you go with the 27" model. Far better machine all round. After a week or so you will not notice the increaed screen size.
     
  3. kdoug macrumors 6502a

    kdoug

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2010
    Location:
    Iowa City, IA USA
    #3
    Seems like you already know the answer. You have my permission to buy the 27".
     
  4. CaptRB macrumors 6502a

    CaptRB

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2016
    Location:
    LA, California
    #4
    The 21 is almost a waste of money.

    Get the 27 and you'll be happier.


    R.
     
  5. Smellmet macrumors regular

    Smellmet

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2012
    Location:
    Goole, UK
    #5
    I wouldn't touch a 21 with a barge pole. My bosses in their wisdom have bought me the base 21 model with the 5400rpm hard drive and 8GB RAM to run the Creative Cloud on. Utter garbage machine, and a slow as a £250 Windows laptop, and not upgradeable to boot.
     
  6. alien3dx macrumors 6502a

    alien3dx

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2017
    #6
    i used base line 2017 imac .. 8GB

    SSD is nice but i think you don't need that speed.. Waiting few second or just open from sleep the same effect with SSD .
    16GB would last long few years. So as 8 GB is occasionly ..

    I buy mac just to do programming only.. frequently max up ram but still perfom compare to 8 GB ram windows laptop.

    If you do a lot of code and virtual machine, ram upgrade is a must..

    If you do lot of serious video editing, is a must..

    Mostly i change laptop 3 years max for windows.. mac i really unsure..
     
  7. scotttnz macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2012
    Location:
    Auckland, New Zealand
    #7
    In many ways I would prefer to get the 21”, but the lack of easily upgradable RAM, and the rediculous amount that Apple charge for more than 16GB completely kills it for me. So I will have to make room on my desk for a 27” iMac alongside my 40” 4K monitor.
     
  8. Fishrrman macrumors P6

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #8
    If you can afford it, get the 27".
    You'll never regret having done so!
     
  9. CaptRB macrumors 6502a

    CaptRB

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2016
    Location:
    LA, California
    #9
    Even the folks at my Apple Store laugh at the stupidity of the smaller iMac. It's a total dud.


    R.
     
  10. SaSaSushi macrumors 601

    SaSaSushi

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2007
    Location:
    Takamatsu, Japan
    #10
    Some people in here have a bad habit of projecting their own preferences to be the gold standard. I happen to prefer, and own, the 27-inch iMac but realize that upgradeability issues aside the 21.5-inch is a viable option for a lot of users and a very well-reviewed machine.
     
  11. CaptRB macrumors 6502a

    CaptRB

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2016
    Location:
    LA, California
    #11


    The 21.5 is a dead end. You MUST get the memory upgrade and you won't even get a fusion drive unless you get the top model, though you can add it. Add the FD and some memory and you're a few hundred from the cost of the base 27" which is just a LOT more machine...better bigger screen and a viable upgrade path.

    Load up the 21.5 with what you will likely need (16 GB and FD) and you're at 1600. That's too close to the 27 price.

    Typical for Apple price structure, the low end is usually not worth it in the long run. I think Apple is crazy with the 21.5 and I haven't heard of anyone I know buying one. I have a good friend who's a genius in Chicago and she tells me the 21.5 sells mainly to kids and grandparents, but the 27 is what people go for.

    Apple needs to stop the nonsense. All Machines should be standard 1 or 2 TB FD or SSD 512 and 16 GB RAM should be the baseline.


    R.
     
  12. scotttnz macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2012
    Location:
    Auckland, New Zealand
    #12
    Apple just needs to price the BTO options at a fair price, so that buyers can get what they think they will need for the next 3-5 years without feeling like they have been ripped off. Personally I’m ok with paying a bit of a premium, for example I don’t think what they charge for 16GB RAM in a 21” iMac is too terrible, but if you think you might need more than 16GB sometime in the life of the machine, then the cost of 32GB is unjustifiably expensive IMHO.
     
  13. SaSaSushi macrumors 601

    SaSaSushi

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2007
    Location:
    Takamatsu, Japan
    #13
    I agree about Apple’s ridiculous markups for RAM.

    The RAM in the 21.5-inch is upgradable. It’s just not easily upgradable. At any rate, it is not a dead end, dud nor stupid.

    For those who want the smaller footprint and/or don’t need more RAM or are comfortable with modifying it themselves it’s a perfectly viable option.
     
  14. scotttnz macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2012
    Location:
    Auckland, New Zealand
    #14
    Agreed. At least there is the option of upgrading, even if it is not a walk in the park. Unlike MacBooks which are stuck with whatever they ship with.

    But I come from a background of building my own PCs, and upgrading them in whatever way I choose. I dunno what happened, maybe I just got old and\or discovered the joy of macOS. I can’t be bothered with Windows (or hackintosh) any more, so have to accept less flexible hardware choices, but choosing the best compromise for my needs\wants isn’t easy.
     
  15. mcpix macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 13, 2005
    #15
    I just went through this with a friend of mine. Her MBP just quit and she decided to get an iMac to replace it. She told me she was looking at a 21.5" at Best Buy and I told her she should spend a few hundred dollars more and get a refurb 27" from the Apple Store. She decided it was "easier" to get the iMac at Best Buy.

    She called me this week to complain that her iMac seemed slow and did I know what was wrong with it. I told her she was used to the SSD and 16GB ram in her MBP and now she was stuck with 8GB and a slow 5400 rpm HD.
     
  16. CaptRB macrumors 6502a

    CaptRB

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2016
    Location:
    LA, California
    #16

    Yup. The new 21.5 is a "old" machine unless you punch it up with upgrades, at which point you should just get the 27" and have a much better machine. Unless you can't somehow fit the 27" it just makes sense to skip the 21.5.


    R
     
  17. alien3dx macrumors 6502a

    alien3dx

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2017
    #17
    Loading ya slow... other shouldn't effect much..

    What my workload kinda high also but still okay

    1. Open spotify
    2. Open Safari
    3. Open Chrome
    4. Open Visual Studio Code
    5. Open android emulator.
    6. Open Sequal Pro..

    Some people would said, if you using SSD you never go spinning disk .. I previously using 2 laptop windows with SSD and nothing effect much.
     
  18. CE3 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2014
    #18
    Yeah, the slowness is due to the HD she chose, not the display size. While I would agree that it's ridiculous for Apple to be putting 5400 rpm drives in any of their computers in 2017, there are faster fusion and SSD options available for both models.
     

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17 September 19, 2017