Will 2.0Ghz be fast enough for Leopard?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by theanimala, Sep 16, 2007.

  1. theanimala macrumors 6502

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    Mar 2, 2007
    #1
    I am a long time PC user, looking to get an iMac for the family PC next month when Leopard is shipping. This machine will be the Xmas gift for the family so there is no crazy rush.

    My question is, will the 2.0Ghz be enough? My oldest in only 4 years old, so there will be no hard core gaming on it. Internet, photo storage (slight fixes, cropping, etc.) and email will be it's main uses. As we know with Window's, each new OS revision requires more and more hardware. Is it the same with Apple? Will my fancy new iMac be a dog in 2 years?

    If I could, I would like to save some money and get the base system. If I upgrade to the 2.4Ghz system, then I am very tempted to spend $300 more and move up to the 24" system. My PC will still be my main work machine (as it's located in my home office), but I could see myself using the iMac more and more for my photo editing and web browsing. Not sure if I need to spend $600 more to get a small amount of additional power.

    Whatever machine I get I will upgrade to 3GB of ram, and connect up a network harddrive for storage between my PC and iMac. Thanks all for your help.
     
  2. flopticalcube macrumors G4

    flopticalcube

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    #2
    2GHz is plenty. I plan on running Leopard on my daughter's 1.66GHz mini and I expect it will be faster than Tiger (especially after I upgrade the RAM to 2G).
     
  3. flyinmac macrumors 68030

    flyinmac

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    #3

    Apple tends to support their machines a bit longer than you find in the Windows world.

    But, they do eventually discontinue support for them.

    The Leopard 10.5 version is supposed to support most later model G4's, all G5's, and all Intel systems. So, you should be fine.

    As for requiring higher-end hardware, that does occasionally happen. But, from OS 10.1 through 10.4, the only increase in hardware requirements that I recall was the move from requiring 128 MB of RAM in 10.0 through 10.3.9 to requiring 256 MB of RAM in 10.4.x.

    10.4 also saw the abandonment of support for many of the really old G3 systems. The latest version of OS X that I can run on my old iMac G3 "tray-loader" CD-ROM system is 10.3.9.

    Unofficially, I can still put OS 10.4.x on it. It just requires a free utility to perform the trick.

    You can generally expect OS X to support any current machine for many more revisions.

    If G3 support is just finally being phased out, then the current machines should have a long support life ahead.

    Also, the OS X revisions tend to improve performance on your current machine. For example, 10.4.x felt snappier than 10.3.x on my Mac Mini G4 and my iMac G5. Likewise, the upgrades from 10.0 through 10.2 also improved the performance of my other machines.

    So, just buy what you want, and you should be fine.
     
  4. DoFoT9 macrumors P6

    DoFoT9

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    #4
    yes that will be heeeeeps.

    my dads 1.2ghz ibook will run it.
    make sure u have max ram and it will be good :)
     
  5. iDAG macrumors 65816

    iDAG

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    #5
    All current systems will run it fine, and will be supported for many years depending on how much u upgrade it.
     
  6. eRondeau macrumors 6502a

    eRondeau

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    #6
    Unlike the Microsoft world, where each successive "improved" OS gets more and more bloated, requiring more and more computer to run it -- Apple's new OS's seem to get faster and more efficient. It is likely that any Mac that can run Tiger can run Leopard.

    (The only good thing about Microsoft's method is that eventually, a future generation of Windows will require more computer power than anyone can supply, so it won't run at all...)
     
  7. Naimfan macrumors 601

    Naimfan

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    Jan 15, 2003
    #7
    I have Tiger running on my son's G4 eMac--and it is noticeably faster (or at least it FEELS that way) than 10.3.9 was. And I think it will even run Leopard, although that will probably be it.

    So I wouldn't worry that a new iMac, in any of their forms, would be a challenge for Leopard, or, indeed, for probably five years or so.

    Bob
     
  8. pilotError macrumors 68020

    pilotError

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    #8
    I have run Leopard on my iMac Core Duo (original Intel iMac). You won't have any issues.
     
  9. theanimala thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #9
    Thanks everyone for the replies. Now I am in a tougher position as I really don't see the reason to go for the upgraded 20". Since I'm not a gamer, I don't believe I will really see much of a difference between the 2.0 and 2.4. I was using that justification that I needed the 2.4Ghz, so then $300 more is not a big deal to get the bigger / better screen. But now it seems the 24" is $600 more for me since it includes hardware that will probably not make the system any faster for me... Hmm, I hate decisions like this.
     
  10. Naimfan macrumors 601

    Naimfan

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    Jan 15, 2003
    #10
    If you don't mind a suggestion, get the base model and max out the RAM from somewhere like Newegg. Last I saw they had 2 Gb sticks for $93.99 each. Buy two, install, and enjoy the iMac!

    Bob
     
  11. mets1125 macrumors regular

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    Queens, NY
    #11

    If you upgrade from a 2.0 to 2.4 you not only get a faster CPU but also upgrade in the video card and I believe more HD space.(250 to 320gb) For me the 2.4 upgrade is worth it.
     
  12. theanimala thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #12
    But that's what I am trying to find out. For what I would be using it (little kids games, internet, email, minor photoshop work, and a bit of handbrake/itunes, I'm not sure if I will notice the difference from the extra 400mhz or the faster video card. I can justify the extra $300 for the larger/better screen, but I'm not sure I will use the extra $300 worth of upgrades. I wish I could get the 24" with the slower processor/video card...
     
  13. flopticalcube macrumors G4

    flopticalcube

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    #13
    That is one of Apple's small problems. Configurability. I would have liked a 20" 2.8GHz model as I don't want the big screen. But no. You want a 24" 2.0GHz model because you don't need the CPU. But no. Oh well. We have to live with what is given to us and bye all accounts you should be very happy with the 2.0 20" and with the $300 saved you could max the RAM out and get a decent external for backups.
     
  14. oduinnin macrumors regular

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    Planet Earth
    #14
    Gee, I remember when 400MHz was a blazing fast CPU all by itself! ;)

    My philosophy, is to always buy as much computer as I can afford when I need to buy one. That way I get the maximum miliage out of my purchase.

    Just last week I finally replaced my 6Yr, 8mo old G4 Power Mac (466GHz & oh, BTW runs Tiger just fine) with an Aluminum iMac 24" 2.8GHz. It feels super fast. :D

    Bottom line: Do what you think is best for you and your family. :)
     
  15. bmcgrath macrumors 65816

    bmcgrath

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    #15
    A G4 is gonna run Leopard. So a 2.0ghz defo gonna run it plenty fast! ;)
     
  16. dabirdwell macrumors 6502

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    Oklahoma
    #16
    One other thing to consider

    Is the LCD panel. The 24" is a much nicer panel and will make your photos (and everything) look much better.
     
  17. naftalim macrumors 6502

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    Sep 18, 2007
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    Vancouver, BC
    #17
    I had the same quandry and went for the base model, but added 1GB of RAM to bring it to 2GB. Unless you are doing high-end graphics stuff, you will never notice the difference in processor speed. As for the extra storage, given what you are doing with it, it will take a while to fill it up, and you can always get an external drive to store stuff that you want to keep but dont use on a regular basis.


     
  18. Jimmdean macrumors 6502

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    Mar 21, 2007
    #18
    I recommend the base model all the way, especially considering your needs. I went the same way and I've handbraked nearly 100GB (after) of material since I got it... btw: the 24" model would be very imposing for typical users. Most people just don't need a monitor that big and I cringe when people recommend it willy-nilly...
     
  19. richorlin macrumors regular

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    Sep 19, 2007
    #19
    You know what you want to do with it now, but that may change after you get the iMac and find out what it REALLY can do. Spend the extra $300 and get the faster processor/video/hard drive. You won't regret it later.
     
  20. alljunks macrumors regular

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  21. Italchef macrumors 6502

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    #21
    Whatever you decide, I would get as much RAM from a non-apple dealer. It's much cheaper and simple to do. I have a 4 yrs old iMac G4 that is still going strong after upgrading the RAM myself.
    One other thing: if this is your first Mac, as far as what you might think you'll be doing probably will change as using a Mac will enable you to exploit what you're able to do with your computer. You'll find yourself doing alot more with music, video, photography etc. Its all new, exciting and fun.

    Good luck and let us know how you get on.
     
  22. macjonny1 macrumors 6502a

    macjonny1

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    Jan 10, 2006
    #22
    I think the OP is maybe not realizing that these machines are 2.0GHz but these are C2D chips. This isn't a 2 GHz G5 we're talking about here. Even the G5 would be plenty fast for Leopard though....

    I'm just pointing out that clock speed is not the most important factor anymore....
     
  23. flyinmac macrumors 68030

    flyinmac

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    #23
    Well, that is quite true for some applications. But, it is important to remember that for most everyday tasks, a faster processor will still tend to outperform multiple slower processors.

    As programs become better designed, then multiple processors will become a major advantage. But, I have still observed a few programs maxing out a single core of my 4-core Mac Pro. So, those programs will not see any benefit from multiple processors.

    Ideally, you find the best blend. Get as fast of processor as you can, and then get as many cores as you can afford. That's how I would go about making my decision.

    Getting something faster than what you need now only makes sense if you consider that the reason we need faster processors every few years is to keep up with newer programs that tax our older and slower processors.

    I have purchased a few computers in the past where I decided to get only what I needed at that moment (because of my budget). And, I found that within 3 to 6 months I really needed something better.

    As the other poster mentioned, sometimes you'll get a machine and discover things that you can do with it that you had not considered before. Then, you discover that it doesn't do it as well as you'd like (once you decide you really like that task).

    For example, when I got my first iMac G5, I got a 1.8 GHz system with a 17-inch monitor an 80 GB hard drive and 1 GB of RAM. It was replacing an older iBook G3 366 MHz with around 256 MB of RAM.

    When I purchased the new iMac, I was thinking about what I planned to do with it. And, it exceeded my needs in that area. But, once I got the new iMac, I discovered iMovie and iDVD. And, found that I really preferred making movies with those tools as opposed to the simplistic method that I had used previously.

    Unfortunately, the iMac I had purchased was not as well equipped as I would have liked for my new use. I upgraded the memory (that was easy enough). But, the processor was a bit slow (encoding was an overnight process). The hard drive was undersized (I would often run out of room during a project and have to dump things from the drive to make room), but it was not something that I could replace at the time without risking my warranty (that and many people who had replaced the drives in those early models were having heat issues and compatibility issues with the temperature sensors).

    So, to really enjoy using the computer for the new task I discovered, I really needed a machine that was better suited to the task.

    Now, the current Core2Duo models (even at 2 GHz) are much better equipped and more powerful than the iMac G5 I had. But, I use that to illustrate that the other poster is correct. Once you get a machine, you may discover new uses that would make you wish you had gotten some of the options that you cannot adjust later. And, even if that doesn't happen, you will likely someday find that you would have gotten another 6 months or even a year or two more use from a slightly faster machine. Think of it as spending a little more now to extend the time between your next full purchase.
     

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