Upgrade to a 27" imac?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by beerglass007, Oct 17, 2010.

  1. beerglass007 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 13, 2008
    #1
    Hi all,

    I brought a imac 21.5" a few months ago when I sold my MBP and now have more money and thinking about upgrading to a 27" imac

    I brought the 21.5" secondhand and managed to get apple to replace the whole thing when it had dust inside. So the imac is only 3 months old and I paid £800 for it. Specs are C2D 3.06 4GB ram 1TB HD and ATI Radeon HD 4670.
    I do dual boot into win7 and play the odd game. I find it plays most but not totally maxed out when running native res which I like

    So I'm thinking should I sell the 21.5" and buy a 27" with a better graphics card. I see the current high end has a ATI Radeon HD 5750 with 1GB or the one below is ATI Radeon HD 5670 with 512MB.

    The refub have the older 27" but with the I7 and different video card again.

    Can you play most modern games in native res on the 27" and whats the difference in performance between these cards.

    I didn't buy a 27" first time round because I felt it was too big, now i'm used to the 21.5" and it feels small. I mainly browse, email and play games on the imac.

    Thanks
     
  2. TMRaven macrumors 68020

    TMRaven

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2009
    #2
    If you're thinking on upgrading solely for gaming performance, then you're upgrading for the wrong reason. Spend that extra money on a custom built gaming rig. I'm sure you can get a decently spec'd amd machine with ati 5650 or 4850 desktop gpu for around 600.
     
  3. beerglass007 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 13, 2008
    #3
    Yeah I know what your saying but I don't want another PC. I sold my gaming PC and MBP then purchased a Imac and Ipad a few months ago. I like the Imac because its simple and a self contained unit. Buying a new PC I would need another monitor, keyboard etc etc
    I don't really want the hassle or mess on the desk.

    So the 27" seems like the ideal unit for me. I think my current Imac is worth £800 as its 3 months old and has 2 years apple care left.
    I can purchase a refub or new 27" for around £1300-£1400

    I'm happy to put down £400-£500 extra for the ultimate Imac if its going to fit my requirements.
     
  4. TMRaven macrumors 68020

    TMRaven

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2009
    #4
    Up to you I guess. The mobility 5850 in the highest end iMac is a decent card, but you might find yourself wanting a new iMac because games 1-2 years down the line don't run the smoothest at highest settings.
     
  5. beerglass007 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 13, 2008
    #5
    Ok thanks for the input

    What about gaming with this

    http://store.apple.com/uk/product/G0GF0B/A?mco=MTU0MzQ1NjE

    Refurbished iMac 27-inch 2.8GHz Quad-Core Intel Core i7
    It has a ATI Radeon HD 4850 graphics with 512MB

    How does this card compare to the newer versions ?

    The refub store also have some quad I5.

    I'm alittle lost with regards to CPU as well. Does the quad cores only really matter when encoding video and stuff ?
     
  6. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    Location:
    Finland
    #6
    That's okay for gaming, the new one is a bit better since it has better GPU. TMRaven should be able to tell you more about the gaming performance as he has the same iMac.

    Quad core is useful if you do CPU intensive stuff, such as video encoding. However, you need quad core because of the GPU. If you don't do any CPU intensive stuff, you could get this instead. It has better GPU but not as good CPU
     
  7. beerglass007 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 13, 2008
    #7
    Looks nice but thats US only. Gutted as its not in the UK refub store

    8(
     
  8. TMRaven macrumors 68020

    TMRaven

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2009
    #8
    The mobility 4850 is decent. Not quite as good as mobility 5850, but it manages to squeek by with most modern games at native resolution and high- highest settings with 30fps on average (no aa) It can also be overclocked 20% to desktop 4850 standards for a 15-20% boost in gaming performance, and its performance will be up-to-par with mobility 5850.

    The mobility 5850 might last you another year or so as far as games are concerned though. It can also be overclocked 10% to mobility 5870 standards for a 10% performance boost.

    Notebook check has benchmarks on both gpus, but they're not at the iMac's 2560x1440 resolution.

    One final note. You don't really need the quad core iMac to get ahold of the mobility 5850 gpu (at least in regular apple store, not refurbished.) You can get the lower end stock configuration 27 inch iMac that only has 3.2ghz clarkdale cpu, and upgrade gpu to mobility 5850 as bto option. Most games won't benefit from the quadcore lynnfield cpu (not as of now anyways)
     
  9. beerglass007 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 13, 2008
    #9

    Ok thanks for the advice. I see on the apple web site a option for a base 27" then upgrade the CPU to 3.6 i5 and add the video card 5750. The extra costs bring the price in over the highend 2.8 quad core i5 with the 5750 as standard.

    So whats better the i5 dual core 3.6ghz or the quad core i5 2.8ghz ?

    The difference is only £50 more

    Also just seen this

    http://store.apple.com/uk-edu/product/FB953B/A?mco=MTU3ODQ4Mjg

    Not bad but still not the nice 5750 video card
     
  10. TMRaven macrumors 68020

    TMRaven

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2009
    #10
    I know a lot of people seem to go gaga over that 3.6ghz cpu clock on the i5 clarkdale, but for what it costs, it really isn't worth it over the quad core options. Keep in mind that the lynnfield quadcores have very high turbo boost efficiency (the i7 lynnfields can get up to 3.5ghz while in dual core operation, for exmample) I think the i5 lynnfields go up to 3.3-3.4ghz while in dual core operation. For the extra few mhz, the 3.6ghz dual core isn't worth it in my opinion (the quad core would futureproof better)
     
  11. beerglass007 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 13, 2008
    #11
    I think I might order my 27"

    I will get the 27" with the ATI Radeon HD 5750 and a i5 CPU

    But quad core i5 running 2.8GHz or the i5 3.6GHz ? The 3.6GHz is an extra £25.

    The cost is £1650 and I can get edu discount of £200 making it £1450 which is £150 more than a refub which has the older video card but is a i7 quad core.

    Is it worth the extra £150 to buy new and get the 5750 video card but only a i5 cpu ?
     
  12. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    Location:
    Finland
    #12
    For gaming, get the new one. I would also stick with the quad core, it's more future-proof
     
  13. beerglass007 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 13, 2008
    #13
    Hi all

    I've done it. Ordered a 27" i5 quad core with 5750 video card.
    Got it brand new from apple with edu discount £1450

    Does the edu purchased imacs come with 3 years warrantly as standard ?

    I hope the 27 " isnt going to be too big now
     

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