What's the REAL difference between M290x and M295x?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by hojoon0724, Oct 26, 2014.

  1. hojoon0724 macrumors regular

    Jun 26, 2007
    Los Angeles, CA
    I don't feel like reading all 16 pages and sift through useless speculations and arguments based on just numbers.

    What's the real difference between M290x and M295x?

    Yes, 2gb is smaller than 4gb and more memory is for the most part better. But what's a real world difference? Is it that there will be crazy lag while using safari? Or will it be slow while running Lightroom? Or will it be running at its limit while using an external Thunderbolt display? Will it blend? (OK, maybe not that last part).

    Does anyone even have a side by side comparison? Or are we just talking out of our asses without using it in the actual world?
  2. inhalexhale1 macrumors 6502a

    Jul 17, 2011
    Ridgewood, NJ
    Oh, it'll blend.

    Other than that, you'll probably have to wait a little longer to get a real idea of how much better the card is. The m290x is ranked just below the 680mx from the 2012 iMac (according to notebookcheck). I would expect the 295 to rank higher than the 780m in the non-retina iMac.
  3. azure247 macrumors 6502

    Sep 9, 2008
    295x is based on the new tonga GPU and the 290x is just a rehashed 7870
  4. lcseds macrumors 6502a

    Jun 20, 2006
    NC, USA

    Since you don't want to do all that reading and just want solid results, let me add this........
  5. DerekS macrumors 6502

    Jun 25, 2007
  6. marcel500 macrumors regular

    Nov 18, 2006
    So, would you go for the 295 since it is a newer chipset?
  7. tillsbury macrumors 65816

    Dec 24, 2007
    The 290 is fine for everyday use of the computer on its own. If you are wanting to do any of:

    (1) run an external display as well as the internal retina
    (2) play more modern games
    (3) do things that will unload processing to the GPU (e.g. FCPX, any form of heavy duty engineering calculations, video, or intensive graphics editing)

    ...then you will appreciate the extra power of the 295.
  8. theSeb macrumors 604


    Aug 10, 2010
    Poole, England
    The real differences are that the m290x is slower and cheaper. If you were bothered to read some of the threads around here, then you might learn a bit and be able to make these deductions yourself.
  9. 5iMacs macrumors regular

    Oct 25, 2014
  10. hojoon0724 thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 26, 2007
    Los Angeles, CA
    Awesome, thanks.
  11. marcel500 macrumors regular

    Nov 18, 2006
    Obviously it's slower and cheaper - if you would read our question carefully than you wouldn't have made such a comment.


  12. xgman macrumors 601


    Aug 6, 2007
  13. yus macrumors newbie

    Oct 20, 2014
    Patiently awaiting a comparison as I need to decide which one I want to get

    Think I'm gonna go for the i5+295 at the mo but going to wait and see how much better the 295 is compared to the 290 first
  14. Serban Suspended

    Jan 8, 2013
    the upgrade between 770M and 780M is 150$
    the upgrade between 290x and 295x is 250$ so it must be something
  15. AirThis macrumors 6502a

    Mar 6, 2012
    If you want a concrete answer, here's mine: the base model with Radeon R9 M290X suffers from lag (even with Apple's recommended resolution). If you ask me, it's totally unusable.

    This reproduces precisely what I experienced with the base configuration:


    If you don't believe me, go demo it and form your own opinion...
  16. LuvD macrumors newbie

    Oct 18, 2010
    This issue does not only affect the 5k iMac, but also a lot of other Macs under Yosemite (see this forum or the comments of that video) - it's more of an OS bug.
  17. jbuk1 macrumors member

    Oct 24, 2014
    The M290x doesn't seem to have any problems updating my screen at best for retina so I'd say it's more a software issue in that previous video.


    The fans sure do spin up on this thing though after a while in Rome total war II. It is quite distracting and I ended up putting on my headphone.

    I may return this anyway and get the m295x though as I realised I can get an educational discount. I hope it's not too much louder.
  18. 5iMacs macrumors regular

    Oct 25, 2014
    I'm looking for some more comparisons, too, I think it's interesting. We have the Unigine Valley Benchmark which was performed on a variety of other systems. In addition I posted the luxmark OpenCL benchmark (M290X) which is pretty valid for GPU compute tasks. (very easy to download and run: http://www.luxrender.net/wiki/LuxMark hint, hint)

    Others have generously contributed lots of gaming results (resolution/FPS) but understandably those have all been M295X so no points of comparison yet.

    Attached Files:

  19. FredT2 macrumors 6502a

    Mar 18, 2009
    It's probably just as loud. It may take more to make the fans ramp up, or it may ramp up faster because it generate more heat. Mine behaves very much like my 2.6 i7 Mac Mini, and sounds about as loud. This just from CPU load.
  20. AirThis macrumors 6502a

    Mar 6, 2012
    I've tested both iMac GPU variants side by side... One lags massively the other mostly doesn't. As I said, try for yourself...
  21. jbuk1 macrumors member

    Oct 24, 2014
    Rubbish. I have a machine with the 290 and it doesn't lag at all let alone massively.

    What the hell are you talking about?

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