Trying to make a final Decision

Discussion in 'iMac' started by MacinMan, Jan 11, 2017.

  1. MacinMan, Jan 11, 2017
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2017

    MacinMan macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2011
    Location:
    Daytona Beach, FL
    #1
    Hey all, I recently financed a late 2015 27" iMac to replace a late 2013 MacBook Pro 13"

    Here is some background for the decision, and situation I have here:

    About a year after I got the MBP, I really had no more need for a laptop, so I used said computer as a desktop for a couple years with an external display connected by HDMI. Then I started having some issues with the setup because of using the laptop as a desktop with an external display such as sleep related issues, audio issues, HDCP issues, when it came to accessing my third party content. And knowing that I couldn't take full advantage of a higher resolution display e.g. 4K at a very high refresh rate. I decided that I was tired of dealing with the computer and it would be better to start fresh with a new configuration, and a dedicated desktop. Let me also mention here that I really didn't want to have to worry about the battery anymore either since those are no longer replaceable at a reasonable cost.


    I also have a background and education in TV production, and broadcast. I wanted a good desktop to be able to build my skills with since the most experience I've had when it came to editing was 480p video, miniDV etc.

    I do have access to cameras now in my iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch, that can all do 1080 and I also own a copy of ScreenFlow so I can do screen casting presentations as well.

    I also wanted to mention that I have a visual impairment so the large Retina display of the iMac is very nice on my eyes and in my case a need for comfort more so then it would be for someone with full vision.

    The question is this I bought the mid range model out of the three standard configurations.
    I do plan on getting into 4k editing down the road, but I can't get a time frame at this point and for that I've read that an i7 is better. For now. I wanted to find out if this was a good enough configuration to get me to the point. Where I would need something extremely higher end to progress at that point?

    I understand that the 1TB fusion drive only has a 24GB SSD, and the 2 and 3 TB models have 128. I think the build to custom options are overkill for me right now, especially since I'm going to have to pay this back.

    For the SSD I am thinking buying a Thunderbolt cable and using the 256 GB one in the MacBook Pro would be a cheaper solution and for extra storage I have a 4 and 6 TB external drive.

    I chose to buy now because I wanted to make sure I got something I could at least upgrade the RAM in at a later time. With the way Apple is going and user serviceable machines, I could easily see this as my last Mac.

    I purchased the iMac last Friday from Best Buy, and have 15 days from then to make sure I won't need to return, or exchange. That's why I'm asking the questions now after I've been testing it here and putting it through the paces to see if it's the right balanced unit for me. As far as the GPU, I don't game much, and I have an Xbox one S for that.

    Thanks again guys, any feedback would be welcome. Sorry this is a long post, but I like to try and give as much information as possible so people can give informed feedback.
     
  2. CWallace macrumors 603

    CWallace

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2007
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    #2
    Not sure the i7 is all that critical (that said, I always buy it). Going onboard small SSD and offboard storage is a smart call. I have a 1TB SSD, but I also have 16TB of storage in a Drobo 5D connected via Thunderbolt 2 to hold my media. So I expect you have a solid platform for what you are looking to do.
     
  3. MacinMan thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2011
    Location:
    Daytona Beach, FL
    #3
    Yes, I have a pretty solid platform I can grow with and expand as needed. I own copies of all Apple's latest pro apps as well . I'm a bit conflicted though because while I've been doing tests with the iMac to make sure I want to commit to paying it off vs returning it. I've also been comparing the existing MacBook Pro 13" late 2013, and it's able to display at 4k on my 4k TV but at 30 hertz as per apple's specs. I think what I want to ask here is, if I had gone the cheaper route and gotten a 4k display for the MacBook Pro instead of the new 5k iMac would I have remained happy, or would I have continued to have problems down the road ?

    Youtube 4k videos seem to play but the UI seems to lag at times., but not as bad as I imagined based on reading articles online, and doing research. There is still the built in display vs external. I was just curious at this point was it a better choice to get a new Mac over trying to move forward with the older one ? I hear so much different information that it's hard to sort through at times. Thanks
     
  4. CWallace macrumors 603

    CWallace

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2007
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    #4
    The iMac 5K is a 60Hz display thanks to the custom controller chip Apple built for it.
     
  5. MacinMan thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2011
    Location:
    Daytona Beach, FL
    #5
    Thanks for the help. I have committed to an iMac to pay off. I returned the one I had and got the top level model of the standard configurations. with the 2 TB drive and AMD M395 and the 3.3 i5. I decided if I'm going to pay a lot for a good system, then I will get the best without going overboard, so It should last quite a while.
     
  6. gian8989 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2015
    #6
    Best choice. That model has the best price-performance ratio. You won't suffer from UI lag and won't have the problem with the small ssd in the fusion drive (you can even split the 128GB ssd from the 2TB HDD). You won't regret it.
     
  7. MacinMan thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2011
    Location:
    Daytona Beach, FL
    #7
    I've been using the computer now for a while and I am certainly pleased.
    I have purchased AppleCare protection, a UPS for battery back up, and a 16 GB RAM kit from amazon. While I was only aiming for 16 GB I found that I didn't need to remove the stock ram, so left it in for a total of 24GB. This will give me a great system that will grow with me, and also allow me some good breathing room if i want to run several virtual machines, as well as building my editing skills and other media related skills.

    Just wanted to update everyone on the progress! Thanks again :)
     
  8. Frisco macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2002
    Location:
    Utopia
    #8
    Congratulations on your new Mac! You question and the responses that you received helped me decide on which configuration to get.

    Enjoy!
     
  9. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #9
    Congrats, and it looks like you have a nice setup. I did not realize this to be the case. I may take the plunge and get more memory for my iMac, but so far I've not needed more then 8GB of ram. I may be looking to running some VMs (some of which simultaneously, so the ram will come in handy.
     
  10. MacinMan thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2011
    Location:
    Daytona Beach, FL
    #10
    Well I had to double check about the RAM because I have a background in computer repair, but most of my experience is dated, and back then SDRAM DDR2 was popular.. One had to install ram in pairs and of equal size and speed. Now thankfully you still need to have at least two DIMMS for best performance, but there is more forgiving configurations now.

    For example I didn't need to have all 8's equaling 32 GB. but I just had to have the same speed and each bank had to be balanced with the same amount of ram in each.

    I did read through the old thread about 24GB vs 32 GB where that was an interesting debate. I feel more confident now that I'll be good with 24 GB and won't need to go to 32 unless I have a specific need at some point. The reason I chose to go with 24 GB instead of the 16 GB I was aiming for was not to waste DIMMS. Since the3 stock and upgrades play nice together I left it alone. Plus having all 4 slots filled with equal spect ram and 2 banks of equal amount. I will probably in the long run get smoother and more balanced performance too. Thanks for the compliments everyone! have a great day!
     

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