What do you expect from the upcoming iMacs for gaming?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Kafka, Mar 30, 2011.

  1. Kafka macrumors 6502

    Mar 10, 2011
    I'm willing to buy a high end 21.5 iMac (3.2Ghz with 5670 gpu, the 27" is just too big for my use as well as too expensive).
    Obviously it won't be long before the next refresh so I'm tempted to wait, but: it appears the new MBPs are interesting for gaming only starting from the high end 15" because of the GPUs.

    Do you think the same could happen to the low end iMacs, having great CPUs but not so good GPUs, making them almost a "non-upgrade" when considering games?
    That would make me buy the high end 21.5 right now since I don't care for Thunderbolt and raw CPU power, and there obviously won't be a redesign and SSDs as standard yet.

    I don't have big needs for games actually: it's 90% World of Warcraft basically, and my ultimate MBA 13" handles it surprisingly well but I miss the screen size.
    I know the current iMac handles WoW ok, but if the next ones perform much better and allow the push the graphic options all the way up I would wait...

    I know nobody can answer for sure but some people here seem to be pretty well informed about GPUs evolutions and stuff :)
  2. tsugaru macrumors 6502

    Feb 9, 2003
    Given the redonkulous amount of pixels being pushed on a 27" iMac, I would hope an ATI Radeon 6950 as a minimum for the high end 27". A 6970 would be a good balance. Of course more VRAM would be nice, as the price, from a vendor anyways, to go from 1GB to 2GB of GDDR5 isn't that much in the grand scheme of things.

    WoW is more CPU dependent than you'd think. I get a consistent 60fps in WoW on my iMac 27" 2.8GHz (about 14 months old) even with my anemic 512MB ATI Radeon 4850. The CPU definitely makes up for it though. And given that any new 27" iMac will use a Sandy Bridge generation processor, which, clock for clock, is about 10-30% more efficient, and comes clocked at a higher speed, you won't have any issues playing WoW on it.

    The only time I get a bit of an FPS drop in WoW is during raids with heavy spells going on (any big screen filling fire spell, think Ignis when he's going nuts, but surprisingly, not during Brutal--, err Argoloth) but it's brief, and it dips down to around 24fps.

    The new ones will be a lot better. I'm looking forward to it (iMac refresh) for that reason as well.
  3. Badger^2 macrumors 68000


    Oct 29, 2009
    If you are already happy with how WoW plays on a MBA, then you will be more than happy with any iMac.

    At one time low end iMacs did come with an integrated video card, but it was phased out in the next revision and its never going to happen again...
  4. MacAndMic macrumors 6502

    Jun 4, 2009
    Just a guess and purely speculation but I would expect about a 10% - 15% increase in framerate on the high end iMacs. The lower end models I think will have a greater percentage of increase but will still fall well behind the top model.

    FWIW, This is purely based on model year to model year of electronics in general.
  5. Kafka thread starter macrumors 6502

    Mar 10, 2011
    Oh well I guess I'll wait since there's no real emergency. I know myself: I'd be very happy with it, but then when the refresh happens I'd be obsessed with how I could have had the better one with a bit more patience... I'm kind of anal like that :eek:

    April is ok but not sure I want to wait until may/june though...

    Oh god right now they have the i5 3.6 on the refurb :(
  6. RollTide macrumors 6502


    Mar 9, 2006
    I am waiting as well, and like you I'm very interested in the GPU. If it will play IL-2 cliffs of dover good then I'll be ok, but I just might have to get the high end to do that :(

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