Yes, again...iMac: now or when?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by imanidiot, Jul 4, 2014.

  1. imanidiot Suspended

    May 1, 2011
    Denver, CO
    I realize that this has been addressed in various guises several or many? times, but here goes.

    I have a mid-2010 refresh basic 21'5 iMac. My first Mac, my first venture into the Apple system. After 25 years of Windows-only experience, the best thing I ever did. However, my iMac is almost 4 years old. Spinning hard drive. You know what I mean. My needs are pretty basic. I'm a writer, I've learned to find Pages acceptable (not the new Pages, but the Pages of iWork of '09). Other than creating text files, I surf, email, a (very) little editing in iMovie, and of course, iPhono. In other words, I'm not dong spreadsheets, crunching numbers, doing audio or video editing, etc.

    My iMac chugs right along; but at the end of this month, it will be 4 years old. I was hoping that when the announcement was made a week ago, about the "new iMac", that it would be a fleet-wide upgrade. But of course it was not. I am thinking about replacing my machine, but I don't know if I should simply do it now or wait until the fall, when the entire line might be refreshed. I know, I know; this forum is overrun with these sorts of threads. But if anyone would wish to chime in, I would very much appreciate it. Basically, (to encapsulate): my almost 4 year-old iMac is still performing very well. But I am anticipating problems. Replace now, or wait until the next iMac itineration (assuming there is one, i.e. if Apple abandons the desktop thing completely, which I think is a distinct possibility).

    Thank you for your patience.
  2. FreemanW, Jul 4, 2014
    Last edited: Jul 4, 2014

    FreemanW macrumors 6502

    Sep 10, 2012
    The Real Northern California
    Given your post . . . . . I would wait until this fall, then see what the new offerings are, and decide if you want to spend for new, or bargain shop the refurbished store to get even bigger bang for your dollar and your modest needs.

    My late 2012 is my first Apple.

    I count myself as fortunate in that I was able to go into it with "go big or go home" as my guide. The 3TB fusion option instead of SSD (Apple was on crack when they decided on the $1,400 SSD price) was my only compromise. Immediately after I submitted the order with Apple, I ordered two 16GB kits from Crucial.

    I would do it all over again in a heartbeat.
  3. Apple fanboy macrumors Penryn

    Apple fanboy

    Feb 21, 2012
    Behind the Lens, UK
    Apple won't abandon the iMac anytime soon. The time to upgrade is when;
    Your machine no longer works and is not economical to repair.
    Your machine no longer does what you need it to.
    Your machine can do what you want it to but not at a speed you can live with.
    Your a lottery winner, and you just update whenever Apple update.


    Me too. And same!
  4. thesimplelogic macrumors regular

    Jun 27, 2014
    I have just purchased the iMac in my signature, and I just came from my 8 year old Intel C2D iMac (been a Mac user my whole life.)
    Personally, I think that you could buy now and you would have a great machine for quite a while. Obviously, if you want something then you might want to wait, but I see no reason not to buy now.
  5. rambo47 macrumors 6502a


    Oct 3, 2010
    Denville, NJ
    I'd buy now, especially if you're going for the 27" model. And if the as yet unannounced refresh is anything like what we just got for the MacBook Air you'd be silly to wait.
  6. Nyy8 macrumors 6502a


    Jun 12, 2011
    New England
    The iMac isn't going away. That's for sure.

    If you can, I would wait. My iMac is 3 years old now, and I'm waiting for the Late 2014/2015 Refresh. I want to know I have the latest and greatest, not at this point almost year old Technology, at last years prices.
  7. dhazeghi macrumors member

    Nov 2, 2006
    For those sorts of tasks, the single biggest upgrade you'd benefit from is an SSD. Assuming you're comfortable with following the steps in the ifixit guide, you can get 90% of the benefit of a new machine for ~$120.
  8. rottnjohn macrumors newbie


    May 22, 2011
    silly valley
    I just ordered a 27 with a fusion drive; I only wish I had ordered it in time to have this weekend.
    You can't upgrade the memory in the a 22.

    So my answer would be "Now." It isn't going away and it probably isn't worth
    waiting for Thunderbolt 2 or the next cpu.
  9. zarf2007, Jul 5, 2014
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2014

    zarf2007 macrumors regular

    Aug 27, 2010
    London, UK
    as per my other thread, I am waiting for a refresh and found this article:

    this indicates that new haswell chips released in May this year could give a decent speed boost and if they added an MX version of a decent GPU with more VRAM, coupled with faster SSD and TB2 I would be tempted to go for that.

    They could wait for the fall or release it anytime from now until then....not sure if there is an incentive to release at the same time as Yosemite as its a free upgrade anyway.

    I think that would then leave the 2015 broadwell release and a retina refresh for a fall 2015 iMac...

    I would wait.
  10. Roller macrumors 68020

    Jun 25, 2003
    You say that your iMac is performing very well, which begs the question "Why are you anticipating problems?" I and many others here have even older computers that are still working fine, though they're admittedly not as fast as newer models.

    So, in the absence of objective signs of impending problems or some other need (e.g., your iMac is too slow for you, won't run OS or application software you require), I'd say wait. Sometime next year, Apple will release an update that, as zarf2007 says, probably will include a Broadwell CPU and possibly a higher-resolution display.

    However, you may simply have the itch to have a newer computer, a feeling I can understand. Unfortunately, unlike the near certainty about the iPhone 6, we don't know much Apple's iMac plans. Back in April, analyst Ming-Chi Kuo provided his timeline for 2014. He said that the lower cost iMac would be released near the end of the 2nd quarter, and he was right. No other iMacs were mentioned, but I wouldn't have expected him to include relatively minor updates. So, if you're in this camp, it might be best to wait until this fall to see if Apple refreshes the late 2013 iMac.
  11. Melodeath macrumors 6502a

    Dec 9, 2009
    Since you're not having any problems, I would absolutely wait. You'll be happy you did when Apple refreshes, whether it be in the fall or the winter.

    I, on the other hand, have a 2010 MBP that is hurting a bit with what I do (audio production). I really want a new iMac, but I'm trying as hard as I can to wait for the refresh. If I'm going to upgrade, I always upgrade to the latest when possible.
  12. rei101 macrumors 6502a

    Dec 24, 2011
    You do not need to change you iMac.

    I have a 2008 17" Mac book pro
    A 2008 Mac Pro
    A 2010 iMac
    A 2004 12" Powerbook (working just fine)

    And I just had a little problem with Mavericks and the iMac, I erased the entire drive and installed everything again and it works just fine. And I work in video editing and motion graphics.

    I could buy a new mac pro at $9K if I want with all the upgrades.

    But why you want to waste money if you are just writing notes? That machine as "it is" is actually too much for what you are doing still.

    It is a computer no a fashion. For what you do you could use my 12" Powerbook from 2004 that has MS Office in it. I can not install Mavericks in it but is can run garage band and final cut 3 just fine.

    Your iMac is just like mine and is a workhorse. Add some ram if you wish and that is it.
  13. tyche macrumors 6502

    Jul 30, 2010
    I'm in the same boat. I have a 21.5" mid 2010 3.6Ghz i5 w/ 16GB. I put a SSD in it about 2 years ago. Runs beautifully so no immediate rush to replace it but I'm ready to get a 1080p screen (therefore 27"), usb 3, thunderbolt, all the advantages of a new build.

    I'm hoping the next release will have affordable SSD options since it's harder and harder to take these machines apart yourself. I can wait because other than XCode & VMware my usage is low - no hardcore gaming.
  14. Lava Lamp Freak macrumors 65816

    Jun 1, 2006
    Your 21.5" is a 1080p screen. The 27" is 1440p.
  15. robgendreau macrumors 68040

    Jul 13, 2008
    What about a new "refreshed" iMac, whatever that is, is more desirable to you than just a new iMac?

    In other words, there are plenty of new machines that are better than yours in several ways. Now. There will be, eventually, new machines that are even better (or sometimes worse; it happens).

    So what is important to you? Speed? Monitor? Peripherals?

    iMacs generally improve incrementally. So I doubt there's gonna be some huge techno leap that is essential, or even very desirable, for the work you do.

    And if you buy now you can get the HUGE performance boost of an SSD. That bump is way more important for most of the work you do than processor speed. No need to wait for that. Ditto the iMac screen; if you haven't found it lacking and gone to an added monitor no point in waiting for that to change.

    And if you just wait and browse the refurbs you'll be able to save a bunch of $$.

    Besides, you could get hit by lightning before the next iMac arrives; carpe diem!
  16. rotlex macrumors 6502a

    May 1, 2003
    Wait. Unless the things on fire or dead. wait.

    I have a 2007 24" iMac. 2.8Ghz, 4GB ram. Every year I've been thinking of upgrading, and every year I wait. This year is the year I'm going to buy new. Once Yosemite comes pre-installed and I see what the next update brings. (Going to relegate the old box to our basement\family room TV).

    I'm a heavy Aperture and Photoshop user, and to be honest, even this near 8 year old iMac runs just fine. Yeah, it's not click, open this second fast, but it still does the job nicely. Heck, yours is half mines age. :D
  17. dazed macrumors 6502a

    Jun 23, 2007
    If your current one still works fine then I'd wait. I see nothing in the current range that is worth upgrading for (unless you're desperate for usb3).

    The thing I love about the macs is their shelf life. When I had a PC id have to basically get a new one every 2 years when it turned into a dog. Macs last much longer :)
  18. imanidiot thread starter Suspended

    May 1, 2011
    Denver, CO
    I really appreciate the responses.
    Yes, mine seems to be running just fine (knock on wood) still, but it's the age of the hard drive that worries me. I do have two Time Machine backups (two drives, alternating) so I think I'm ok if the internal hard drive crashes. The funny thing is, on Black Friday last year I placed an order for a BTO, and then cancelled when I was informed that the $200 in Apple Cash or whatever its called could not be used to purchase Apple Care, and it ticked me off enough to make me cancel the order.

    I think I'll wait and see what happens in the fall. My current iMac does everything I need it to. I just hope it continues to do so for awhile.

    Thanks again, all.
  19. likwidsolutions macrumors member

    Apr 17, 2014
    Your's is holding up better than my 2010 iMac 21.5 inch (not my first mac, but my first desktop Mac).

    Recently I had a problem with the Hard Drive, it was corrupted. I read some iFixit guides and thought I could handle the repairs and then Put a new HDD in as well as replace the optical bay with an SSD.

    What happened though is one of the cables broke from the LCD, which eventually I was able to replace (luckily it was detachable and not soldered on either end), But the iFixit guide had the wrong instructions for my specific iMac on replacing the Optical Drive with an SSD, you have to buy a special bay for it to sit in, so basically I had already bought all these products based on their guide, which if it was correct, would have solved my problem. Anyways, I finally got the LCD back on after about 1.5 weeks (At first I thought I was going to have to sell it for parts), but I was able to replace the HDD, I lost a lot of the optical bay screws so I just kind of fit it in there and Duct taped it down again the aluminum to hold it in place. And finally was able to get my LCD back on.

    I could have had a shop do it, but usually they charge so much for installations, and like I said, if iFixit had their guide right, I would have had the right parts, I still would have broken the LCD cable, but I replaced that and I would have not had to get rid of it.

    But I HAD to upgrade at that point. Basically the fans ran at full speed (even with smcfancontrol and/or HDD Fan Control (which stopped the fans running full speed, but only BEFORE I took it apart). Anyways, that was my first attempt at going inside a mac and making a repair or addition. I sold my 2010 iMac for about 450 (had I not messed with it I probably could of gotten a few hundred more), and my Mac Mini, and then bought a 21.5" Late 2013 iMac.

    Once I realized that you can't upgrade the RAM without taking apart the computer (I looked at iFixit's guide, you literally have to take EVERYTHING apart, it's behind almost everything. So since I am an Amazon buyer and they are awesome I returned it and took the leap and bought a 27". IT really hurt my wallet for a while but it was definitely worth it. However, Had my 2010 Mac continued to work fine, I would have rather waited for the 2014/15 iMac. The fact they didn't include Thunderbolt 2 just goes to show that they want people to get the NEW iMacs (when they come out). But other than general improvements (such as CPU, Graphics Cards, RAM, and probably TB 1 to TB 2; TB2 is just using two TB ports, so the iMac could've had TB2, but they just chose not to allow it), they will probably have nicer HDDs (but it could also cause problems for certain buyers).

    If all they offer is flash memory, fusion drives, or SSDs, either there isn't going to be much space, in which case you can expect to have some External HDDs, or pay them to upgrade (and you know how they like to charge way too much for upgrades). If they still offer SATA III drives (If they could put a 1TB SSD, I would be fine with that, but anything less than 1TB and I KNOW I will have to upgrade the HDD space (internally or externally)

    I might get the 2014 model if it has enough of upgrades and I can get rid of mine before they announce them and I have enough money to pay the difference. I used to always sell my iPhones before they announced the next one and was able to get the new one for like 100 bucks, and then every 2 years I'd get a new contract and make money off of getting a new one.

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