Which Mac is for me?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by Brelaine, Mar 28, 2010.

  1. Brelaine macrumors newbie

    Nov 10, 2008

    I currently own a late 2008 MBP, I love this computer and it is responsible for switching me from PCs :)

    However, the one area where it falls short is gaming. I did not buy it with gaming in mind so I don't fault it for this but my old gaming pc died so it is all I have at the moment.

    Since I am in the market for a new desktop computer and a new display I started looking at the core i7 iMac. This machine seems more than enough for my work and school. I work as a graphic designer and am currently in school for Game Art and Design.

    I am just curious about its gaming performance. I also worry that the 512 card will become obsolete from a gaming stand point before I am ready to invest in another machine. Curious as to others' thoughts on this.

    Since the imac is in-expandable I consider the mac pro, but the price point is really harsh, but I'd rather spend more now than have to buy 2 computers in 2 years, even though the mac pro is probably more computer than I really need.

    So my first question is about the gaming performance? Both in OSx and bootcamp when needed.

    And my second is more of an opinion question of whether it would be a bad investment to buy an imac, I would expect to be able to use it for work and gaming for at least 4 years before thinking of upgrading.

    Oh and one more question. I have no problem running games at lower resolution when necessary but are the imac displays similar to other LCDs that create a lot of blurring and fuzziness at non-native resolutions? This drives me crazy :)

    Thanks for reading!
  2. vistadude macrumors 65816

    Jan 3, 2010
    You should keep your mbp for work and get a pc for gaming. There's no point of getting a mac, and bootcamping all the time to play games. And games that come out on OS X are usually years old on the pc. Save up your money, get a good pc, and invest in a good graphics card.
  3. ddd269 macrumors regular


    Jun 5, 2007
    Torrance, CA
    I so agree with vistadude. Your MBP is a great machine, except for gaming. If gaming is what you want, then get a i7 pc or even a C2D pc. With a great video card you can run 99% of all games out there.

    Switching back and forth is a pain in my opinion, so that's why I have a separate rig for gaming. I would imagine you could spend about $1200 for a great setup, including a 22"+ monitor like this setup

    It is true that Steam will be releasing a Mac version, but even if they do, it's going to be limited to their games only and the iMac's video is not optimum for gaming.

    Good luck!
  4. thegoldenmackid macrumors 604


    Dec 29, 2006
    dallas, texas
    Buying an iMac with the expectation of using it for gaming for four years isn't a good idea. For example, four years ago the top of the line iMac at the time would be:

    20" iMac Intel Core 2 Duo 2.0Ghz
    2GB Ram
    250GB HD at 7200 RPM
    Video: 256mb

    Macs are not cost-effective in terms of gaming, buying something that isn't expandable just isn't a good idea in any field that requires a lot of power.
  5. Winni macrumors 68030


    Oct 15, 2008
    Macs were not made for gaming, and that's the end of the discussion. Apple's graphics card are always at least one generation behind, and they don't even put professional graphics chips in their "Pro" products. Especially the Mac Pro series falls extremely short here.

    I'm a Mac user -and- a gamer, and while I can play stuff like Half-Life 2 and Civilization 4 quite well on my Quad Core Mac Pro w/ nVidia GT8800, I use an Xbox 360 to cover the rest of my gaming needs, and I'm talking about current First Person Shooters here. I never regretted that decision, by the way - buying a console once and for all takes you out of the constant hardware upgrade race the regular PC gamer is in.

    Anyway. If you still want to have a computer that is a good gaming rig... Take something like 1,500 Euros or more and invest it in a customized PC with a real gaming graphics card and 64-Bit Windows 7.

    And about that performance comparison you asked for... Most games don't even exist in a Mac OS X version, so you simply cannot compare it. And those few that have been ported usually perform very poorly on OS X. Civilization IV is an example of how buggy and slow a Mac port of a game can be when compared to the original Windows version -- on the SAME computer.

    In a few weeks, we might have a chance to see how well Half-Life 2 is going to perform in its native Mac version. But what are we going to see then? A six years old game with a six years old game engine. That's basically going to tell us... Nothing. It's a look in the past. Somebody will hopefully wake us when a new CryEngine based game is going to run natively on the Mac. And then we will already know the answer: It'll just be a question of the hardware that you throw at it. And in that regard, like said above, Macs are always behind and not customizable at all.

    Really. Buy an Xbox 360 and be happy.
  6. Brelaine thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 10, 2008
    Thanks all.

    that's more or less what I suspected but I wanted some confirmation from people using imacs for gaming.

    My old PC, while a powerhouse, was such an unbelievable headache that it really turned me sour on the whole idea of them.

    I will have to try and get over my prejudice I guess :)

  7. IntelliUser macrumors 6502

    Nov 1, 2009
    Why does it matter?
    Depending on what games you like to play, all in all a console could easily be the best solution, economically and entertainment-wise.
  8. pukifloyd macrumors 6502a


    Jun 25, 2008
    I agree with above posters... get a pc or build one... it will be cheaper for you as well as you have the expandability...

    or if you have money then buy the mac pro :D

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