Windows You love PC gaming, and Mac. How do you do it?

Discussion in 'Mac and PC Games' started by wilds94, Jun 2, 2013.

  1. wilds94 macrumors member

    Jul 26, 2012
    Just as the question states. I am very curious, and in the planning stages of my next desktop setup. So i'm curious?

    How do you play PC games, and use OSX?
    Do you bootcamp an iMac/Mac Pro?
    Do you have a pc and a Macbook?

    I'd love some opinions, some predictions, and some advice on how to go about doing this for myself.

    Currently thinking of buying a maxed 27" iMac (without the RAM), and bootcamping it with a 13" retina for University.

  2. Mr. RPG macrumors 6502a

    Sep 21, 2012
    Max out a PC with a beast GPU and CPU and then get a rMBP or MBA.

    By building your own PC, you can easily upgrade and get the newest Windows whenever (not only that but it is affordable..)

    With a MacBook you have a semi-affordable way in to OS X and then a way to bootcamp as well.
  3. wilds94 thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 26, 2012
    So this may well be the way to go, but i also do a lot of work on OSX (Logic Pro and Apeture, and have licenses for both). I partly want a machine to do both on, and an iMac or an up-coming Mac Pro refresh might suit, but wanted some other opinions and ideas.
  4. ScottishCaptain macrumors 6502a

    Oct 4, 2008
    If you "love" PC gaming, buy a PC.

    Apple's computers are absolute crap for gaming. I'm probably going to get lynched for saying that around here, but it's the truth. Apple's GPU offerings are almost always underpowered (iMac, Mac Mini, and laptops) or antiquated (Mac Pro). Yeah, games work, but they don't work exceptionally well.

    You can build a nice gaming computer for under $500 these days that will absolutely blow away any Mac for years to come. So if you really, really love PC games, then you might as well go native and build your own PC.

    My advice would be this- build your own PC, and re-invest what you save doing that into a nicer Apple laptop.

  5. Jethryn Freyman macrumors 68020

    Jethryn Freyman

    Aug 9, 2007
    Get a cheaper Mac, or a secondhand one, for your Mac time. Then spend $700 on a "gaming" PC. I did that. $600 for the PC with a Radeon 6770, $150 for the G5 tower [more over time as I upgraded it.] An iMac can't be upgraded, an MBP with *reliable* graphics card will cost you at least as much as a *strong* gaming PC bought brand new on eBay etc.
  6. imacken macrumors 65816

    Feb 28, 2010
    Despite the 'Apple's computers are absolute crap for gaming' comment from another poster, I have found my 2011 3.4GHz HD6970M 27" iMac 16Gb perfectly fine for running games, and I came from using Windows PCs for years before.
    Either Mac 'native' or under Bootcamp I have run Skyrim, Deus Ex, Witcher 2, F1 2012, XCOM Enemy Unknown etc. all perfectly well @ 2560 x 1440.
  7. cluthz macrumors 68040


    Jun 15, 2004
    Desktop PC/Hackintosh and MBA.
    It's just more cost efficient than an iMac.
    iMacs are by no means bad machines, but if you have the space for a Tower-Pc you can get a cheaper solution, with same speed and better expansion.

    As for a replacement for a real apple laptop, I haven't found anything :)
  8. rezenclowd3 macrumors 6502a


    Sep 28, 2004
    Undoing the work of Priuses: burning gas & rubber
    I went ahead and built a PC:
    Intel 3770k @ 4.5GHz air cooled
    Asus Maximus GeneZ Mobo
    16GB Ram
    EVGA 670 FTW
    6TB of storage- 6 2TB HDDs Raid 10
    2 256GB SSDs
    2 500 9.5mm HDDs

    The Macbook Air I have is relegated to work, while the PC is a file/media server(virtualized), which also plays a few games.
  9. thejadedmonkey macrumors 604


    May 28, 2005
    I have a PC desktop, which I use for gaming and programming, and a MBA for couch surfing.

    Eventually I'll probably swap the MBA for a 14" Razer laptop and swap my desktop for a mac mini, maybe. I'm not quite sure, but I would never consider not having a PC.
  10. Dirtyharry50, Jun 3, 2013
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2013

    Dirtyharry50 macrumors 68000


    May 17, 2012
    That simply is not true. Apple offers computers that are more than competent for gaming. Few gamers own the high end on the PC side either. As I am fond of saying, go review the Steam hardware survey for yourself. No need to take my word for it. It is too costly there as well. As for your $500. gaming PC that "can absolutely blow away any Mac for years to come" that is a complete fallacy as well. Let's begin with a good quality 27" display for example. Now, how much is left in your $500. budget for that PC? Zero. You could not even get a comparable display for $500.

    Let's do it some more. Let's say we build a PC with 3.1 Ghz i5 CPU, a Radeon 6850 GPU, 8 gigs of RAM, ivy bridge chipset motherboard with on board sound, a set of speakers roughly equivalent in sound quality to what an iMac includes, a wireless mouse, a wireless keyboard, a 1 TB 7200 RPM hard drive, a DVD read/write drive, a case and PSU capable of powering the system adequately, an OEM copy of Windows, oh and once again, we need a high quality 27" display for an optimal gaming experience although if you want to go cheaper here, by all means do and good luck doing all of that for 500 bucks.

    That would net you a PC equivalent of a mid-2011 model 27" iMac which is going to cost well over $500. and is not going to blow away any iMac for years to come since it is blown away by the 2012 iMac models and of course a 2013 refresh which will be even more powerful is on the horizon.

    I love when people say this stuff without really thinking out the possibilities, making real comparisons that are fair and 1 for 1 and then actually doing the math.

    I don't mean to pick on you personally but I think people sometimes just accept this misinformation as if it is gospel or something when in reality it is false.

    Honestly, go visit and come back here with a complete parts list to build a PC that is exactly the same and as good as (including the display) as LAST YEAR's iMac 27" and let me know what a bargain the system is versus a Mac which importantly can run both OS X and Windows, while the PC cannot (let's not get into hackintoshes please).

    If you want maximal gaming performance and are willing to pay the real cost of it which is not inexpensive, by all means buy a top of the line PC and enjoy your minority status among gamers. More power to you if you can and want to do that. It's your money, etc. Got the cash, the space and desire for top end PC and a Mac, by all means. Why not if you find that a convenient way to do things.

    For most people though, one computer needs to do it all and if you select an appropriate Macintosh for your needs, including gaming - it most certainly can do it all, including play games well.

    Let's not forget while at it that more and more excellent quality games are coming to the Mac now on a regular basis too. You can have very enjoyable gaming experiences right in OS X on Macintoshes.

    People need to stop putting Macs down as being inept for gaming. With the choices of hardware Apple now makes available, that simply is not true. You have plenty of options as a Mac user. I do not regret leaving the PC world behind at all. I've not needed to make any compromises.
  11. wilds94 thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 26, 2012
    Thanks for putting things back into perspective. I know that mac's can handle gaming quite well. I've actually owned the 2012 iMac but sent it back with the intension of getting an SSD model instead. It was a beast, was able to play Crysis 3 at medium-high graphics at around 40-60fps. Which in my books is amazing.

    The biggest concern for me at the moment is sinking 1.5K+ into a gaming machine and not having enough left for a machine that i can take to uni, and use for some medium-high end computing (logic pro, photo and video management.

    Although a pc gaming machine and a 15" retina display might be an option, i'm thinking an iMac/Mac Pro and a 13" air for uni.
  12. Wardenski macrumors 6502

    Jan 22, 2012
    A top spec iMac is a nice machine.

    I game on a Mac Pro and its been good for 5 years, so it is possible but I did have to use a PC 5870 to get the most out of it. Only now is my CPU (only uses one in Windows Home Premium :eek:) being taxed. I also use a PCIE soundcard.

    Down the road, you can't change that 680MX in the iMac so I think a Mac Pro or DIY PC is more suited in the long run - but, the Mac Pro is far too expensive for what it is. Even after a refresh, I think the single CPU varient will be still very expensive even if it has the latest stuff.

    IMO, build a DIY PC and get a decent monitor. Theres a few 27" IPS monitors over here between £500-800 on Overclockers. Thats £800 to spare for a PC, since a base 27" iMac is about £1600 over here.

    You could get a Dell Ultrasharp 30" for £1100, that leaves £1000 left for a PC assuming you go for the uber-iMac which is almost £2000 here.
  13. eattherich macrumors 6502


    Jul 8, 2011
    For me, the late 2012 27" iMac (with the 680MX, of course) is perfect for that very scenario. I do my work/browsing on OS X and fire up Windows 8 in Boot Camp for my gaming. I'm really happy with it! :)
  14. Cougarcat macrumors 604

    Sep 19, 2003
    I have a Hackintosh and 2010 13" MacBook Pro. It's the best combination, IMO (at least til a rMBA is released), but I don't recommend it if you're not tech savvy.

    iMacs have come a long way (especially in the screens department, they are a lot less glossy), but I like the flexibility that a tower provides (I will be adding a fusion drive soon) and Mac Pros will always be terrible from a price/performance standpoint, even when updated. Also, iMac graphics cards aren't the greatest when you consider the huge resolutions they have to push on the 27". It's probably going to be a pain to game on them once this next console generation is out.
  15. saturnotaku macrumors 68000

    Mar 4, 2013
    The 2011 line of iMacs and MacBook Pros (15-inch and higher of course) marked the first time, IMO, Apple computers had decent gaming chops. Even my old 2007 MBP with the notorious GeForce 8600M GT could barely hack it at the time. While the gaming potential of modern Macs is still criminally under-utilized in OS X, they're right up there when running Windows. Since I only have one computer now and don't game nearly as much as I used to, my MBP is the perfect balance of power, practicality, and portability. I wouldn't trade it for anything..well, except a 2012 MBP. ;)
  16. skippymac macrumors 6502a


    Jun 9, 2010
    Hampshire, UK
    I have to agree at least in part with this post, even if it was a little contradictory and untactful. ;)

    The point is if you want the *best* gaming experience, spend a lot of money on a perfect gaming PC.

    If you're happy with a *good* gaming experience, by all means just get a mac, or a mac and a cheaper PC.

    Or be normal and buy a console. :rolleyes:
  17. mslide, Jun 3, 2013
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2013

    mslide macrumors 6502a

    Sep 17, 2007
    2 computers. A cheaper Mac (mini or 13" MBP) and a gaming PC.

    I've tried other options over the years. Buying a max'd out iMac is a waste IMO because in 2-3 years it can no longer play the latest games at max settings (plus, I hate AIO computers anyway). I've also done the hackintosh thing several times over the years. It's just not worth the hassle for me. I prefer to spend my time using my computers, not tinkering with them. A Mac Pro? Well it's just stupid to buy one of those if gaming is your primary use.

    If I were doing it again today, I'd probably build a gaming PC, get a Dell 27" monitor, a mini and a KVM. Cheaper than a max'd out iMac and gives me a lot more flexibility.
  18. Miharu macrumors 6502


    Aug 12, 2007
    I have had 2 iMacs and neither is any good for the very latest games. I only play WoW anyway but I have bought games like Borderlands 2 and it just runs too slow to be enjoyable. I won't buy another desktop mac anymore, but for a laptop I can't think of any better.
  19. andydckent macrumors member

    Jun 2, 2009
    Edinburgh, Scotland
    My top of range imac 27 from 2011 is brilliant for games (and everything else), especially in bootcamp. Only thing I'd recommend is a good gaming mouse for the games.

    I imagine the one from 2012 will be even better!

  20. roadbloc macrumors G3


    Aug 24, 2009
    Keep them separate. I only game on my gaming rig.
  21. saturnotaku macrumors 68000

    Mar 4, 2013
    Or, you know, do both. I don't understand the fascination with PC and console gaming being mutually exclusive in the minds of so many. Not saying that's you in particular, just in general.
  22. PatrickCocoa macrumors 6502a

    Dec 2, 2008
    Yes, but No

    I appreciate your specific rebuttal. For about 25 years I felt the same - from my first Mac 512KE in 1987 to about 2011 or 2012. I've bought and played hundreds of games on my various Macs.

    I did make a rational examination of the games market a year or so ago and custom built a PC which I use solely for games. My Macs (currently a 15" MacBook Pro and a 21.5" iMac) are still my go to machines.

    A few of your points that I considered when making this decision:

    1. The iMac comes with a monitor, while most desktop PCs have a separate monitor. Therefore most PC people don't need to buy a monitor when they upgrade their PC, they just use their existing PC. For $500 you can get a great PC for gaming excluding the monitor. I do understand that if you're switching from a Mac and don't have a monitor, you'll have to buy one.

    2. The gaming selection on the PC is orders of magnitude larger than on the Macintosh. Many of the best PC titles do come to the Mac, but not all. Many of the smaller, niche PC titles do not come to the Mac. Yes, you can live your entire life and enjoy it fully running Mac games.
  23. kelub macrumors regular

    Jun 15, 2010
    I bought a 2011 21.5" base iMac back in 2011 with the intent of it being my primary machine, including gaming. I've been a PC gamer for 15+ years but nowadays my priorities are kids, wife, house, job, etc., so my gaming time is reduced to a few hours a month, if that. So the iMac was a great choice. I don't need to play Crysis 3 at uber settings and expect 125 fps. I've found that for the vast majority of games, the discernible difference between "medium" and "high" is negligible. I've recently played Far Cry 3, Skyrim, Guild Wars 2, and right now Neverwinter: Perfect World, and all of them play at native resolution with medium-high settings and no lag or framerate issues.

    The idea that macs are "crap" for gaming is crap. Yes, sure, if you're a hardcore gamer who is a single lad (or lass) and it's your primary hobby, build a PC that screams. Personally, I like having a minimalist footprint on the desk, no loud & hot box on the floor, and a beautiful screen, all built into one system, that serves all of my personal needs.

    What the PC enthusiasts fail to mention is that while their custom built rig they spent 700 dollars on today will be worth ~150-200 in 3 years, your $2000 iMac will be worth about $1400 in 3 years, so for about the same price as a PC upgrade (i'm talking mobo, cpu, and gpu) you can sell an iMac and buy a new one, keeping up with the latest video card. It's not a complicated concept. In fact, I'll probably be selling my 21.5" 2011 iMac later this year and buy a 2012 (or 2013 if they're out) 27" iMac with the updated graphics card. Selling the 2011 iMac will cover at least 30-40% of the cost of the new iMac (and considering i'm planning on going from a base model to top-of-the-line, that's still pretty good.)

    So if you are REALLY serious about PC gaming, and don't mind having wires and boxes and stuff all around your desk area, then by all means, build a PC and get you a mac mini or a laptop and KVM them. But if you are looking for an elegant all-in-one solution to run both OSX and Windows that will play anything you can throw at it for the next 2-4 years, then an iMac is an easy choice.
  24. VoR macrumors 6502a

    Sep 8, 2008
    I think the iMac is a good value, neat machine considering its screen, but a feel a few of the arguments here are a bit moot. osx is inferior to windows with regards to performance, mouse input and titles, but obviously bootcamp makes this irrelevant (if not a bit inconvenient).
    But for the sort of gaming the topic's word 'gaming' implies, any sensible CPU paired with a graphics setup to fit your performance/quality/upgrade cycle plan is a much more flexible, future proof and 'better for less' option.
  25. saturnotaku macrumors 68000

    Mar 4, 2013
    My brother from another mother. :D

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