Want a new iMac, but no money

sigamy

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Mar 7, 2003
1,306
5
NJ USA
Well, the new iMacs are here and I'm really looking at the prior gen refurb 27" i5 model.

I'm currently running the last white iMac. C2D 2.16Ghz with 3gb RAM and I believe X1600 video card. Maxed out 250gb HD. I have plenty of external storage but iTunes and iPhoto get flaky when libs are stored on my Drobo.

I do no gaming at all, heavy Handbrake, iPhoto, iMovie, iDVD usage. Working my way into Final Cut. Also do minor image editing in Pixelmator and web/PHP development but that is no big deal.

Should I pull some money and spend the $1600 on the i5 iMac? Or should I live with my C2D 20" for another year?

Will the jump in performance for video encoding and photo editing be noticeable?
 

Elysian

macrumors member
Jun 11, 2010
65
0
Think about wants and needs. Then look at your finances.

Then make a decision. But if you can't afford it in the first place, it's usually always a no. If it was for work, then maybe as a new machine sometimes makes work more efficient like in my case (Then again, work makes me a ton of money and I can always afford a new machine). But if it's all for pleasure, then maybe you need to re-work some other stuff to make things more affordable in the future.

Just my 2 cents.
 

steviem

macrumors 68020
May 26, 2006
2,218
3
New York, Baby!
Do you think the bottleneck is the processor/RAM or the external storage?

How's the Drobo connected?

It blatantly looks to be a bottleneck on the external storage.
 

sigamy

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Mar 7, 2003
1,306
5
NJ USA
Thanks all. I guess my thread title was a bit strong. I mean, it won't kill me to purchase the iMac but I haven't really budgeted for it.

Drobo is connected via FW 400, that's all my iMac has. New one will have FW800.

The real question is, how much of a jump in performance is it from a C2D 2.16Ghz to the 2.66 Ghz i5 and is it "worth it"? (which I know is relative)
 

ChuckTee

macrumors newbie
Apr 12, 2010
3
0
Consider a 2009 reburb iMac. Even the base model, which is what I have, will be 50% faster CPU than what you have and a faster hard drive (bigger is faster since you scan a larger area in the same time) and you get FW800
http://www.refurb.me/
Show me proof please. Spindle speed and the drive interface is what makes a drive fast or slow,, not the size of the drive. Please dont post nonsense.
 

Vantage Point

macrumors 65816
Mar 1, 2010
1,169
1
New Jersey
Show me proof please. Spindle speed and the drive interface is what makes a drive fast or slow,, not the size of the drive. Please dont post nonsense.
Bigger drives mean data is packed more densely so at a constant speed you read more data/unit time. At least this is my understanding - both density and speed make a faster hard drive. Am I wrong?
 

Makosuke

macrumors 603
Aug 15, 2001
6,174
367
The Cool Part of CA, USA
Bigger drives mean data is packed more densely so at a constant speed you read more data/unit time. At least this is my understanding - both density and speed make a faster hard drive. Am I wrong?
You're half-right.

Completely correct in that higher data density directly correlates to higher read/write speed on a rotating hard drive--simply put, more data is passing under the head at a given rotation speed.

Not correct in that, as I understand it, drives only read/write to one platter at a time. Which means that, for example, a 1.0TB, 1.5TB, and 2.0TB version of the same drive model, with 2, 3, and 4 500GB platters respectively, would all have about the same read-write speeds. They would, however, be faster than otherwise identical drives with more 400GB platters.

If this weren't true you'd see about double the throughput on a 2TB drive compared to a 1TB, regardless of other factors, which just isn't the case.
 

7thMac

macrumors 6502
May 10, 2010
284
2
Look into your external storage situation. Something is wrong. Itunes and Iphoto should work perfectly from an external drive.
 

Vantage Point

macrumors 65816
Mar 1, 2010
1,169
1
New Jersey
You're half-right.

Completely correct in that higher data density directly correlates to higher read/write speed on a rotating hard drive--simply put, more data is passing under the head at a given rotation speed.

Not correct in that, as I understand it, drives only read/write to one platter at a time. Which means that, for example, a 1.0TB, 1.5TB, and 2.0TB version of the same drive model, with 2, 3, and 4 500GB platters respectively, would all have about the same read-write speeds. They would, however, be faster than otherwise identical drives with more 400GB platters.

If this weren't true you'd see about double the throughput on a 2TB drive compared to a 1TB, regardless of other factors, which just isn't the case.
Good explanation
 

Similar threads

  • Don Gwinnett
6
Replies
6
Views
382
  • dhaymil
4
Replies
4
Views
404
  • Pinkly Smooth
16
Replies
16
Views
649
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.