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carlow1
15th May 2008, 01:51 PM
I'm looking to upgrade my old G5 iMac to one of the new iMac 24" models, but I'm not sure which one will suit my needs. I use Photoshop, iDVD, iWeb, iTunes and Safari alot. I also watch movies and TV shows on my mac. I don't play any games. Gaming is not my thing.

So my question really is, is the 3.06 GHz NVIDIA GeForce 8800 GS model going to make a huge difference for my needs over the 2.8 GHz ATI Radeon HD 2600 PRO model? Is it worth the extra $600? Or should I spend the extra money on upgrading the RAM to 4 gig and bigger HD? Is the 8800 GS graphics card only benificial for gaming? I have tried looking at some of the benchmark tests, but I'm still not sure.

Any advice on this would be appreciated. Thanks. :)

bartron
15th May 2008, 01:55 PM
my opinion...pump the money into RAM (get aftermarket stuff...Apple RAM is a ripoff).

The 2.8 ATI machine is still a beefy beast and should do what you want to do perfectly fine.

Dante Kyar
15th May 2008, 01:56 PM
Your needs are really standard, apart from photoshop which isn't included with a mac.

All the other software is really designed to run quite well on all of the machines. Even my MBA runs all those things fine, and i use them quite a bit.

I'd defiantly get the extra ram (you'll feel the difference), and the bigger HD for your movies and such.

That's what i would do.

furious
15th May 2008, 02:02 PM
I would choose the 2.8 with the HDD, RAM upgraded. HDD through apple and do the RAM myself. I will be getting this system soon.

smdnetau
15th May 2008, 02:09 PM
Mmmm. If it were my money I'd option up the 2.8 with the 8800 and some extra ram. I can't see how the 3.06 is worth the extra bucks.

samwalk
15th May 2008, 02:40 PM
Mmmm. If it were my money I'd option up the 2.8 with the 8800 and some extra ram. I can't see how the 3.06 is worth the extra bucks.

I have been looking at getting an imac and came to the same conclusion.

Byrd
15th May 2008, 02:48 PM
my opinion...pump the money into RAM

But RAM is so cheap, it's only a fraction of the price.

If you can afford it, go the 3.06 - the CPUs in iMac isn't easily upgraded nor will be in the future.

JB

carlow1
15th May 2008, 02:59 PM
I kinda figured the 2.8 GHz was the way to go. I'm releived to hear you agree. At the moment Photoshop and iWeb run like crap on my iMac G5. Lots of spinning beachball.

Thanks guys. :)

leon
15th May 2008, 03:06 PM
If Photoshop CS3 uses core image technology (I don't know if it does) then stick with the ATI 2600 over the Nvidia 8800GS as it is much faster. 8800GS is only good for games, which you state you do not play.
Check out Real World Speed Tests for Performance Minded Mac Users (http://www.barefeats.com) where they tested the 2 GPUs against each other. 8800GS was slower when it came to Core Image intensive tasks. 8800GS on the other hand kicked ass at gaming.

I would get the 3.06GHz processor as an updated option as it will speed things up for you.

In a nutshell, get the 2.8GHz 24" iMac but option up the processor, then upgrade the RAM yourself.

carlow1
15th May 2008, 03:16 PM
I would get the 3.06GHz processor as an updated option as it will speed things up for you.

Interesting option Leon, thank you. I never thought of just upgrading the CPU alone. That's something for me to think about. :)

MacEmpathy
19th May 2008, 10:28 AM
Get the 2600pro if you're not interested in playing demanding games, since for core imaging it kicks the crap out of the 8800GT.

Brains
19th May 2008, 03:09 PM
The fact that you mention Photoshop first -- and also include a list of applications which are all image or graphics based -- means that you should be looking at a 24" iMac of some kind. Only the 24" iMac sports a true 24-bit S-IPS LCD colour display; all other models use an inferior, laptop-grade 18-bit TFT-TN LCD panel, which means you will only have 262,000 colours on-screen and not the 16.7 million you need for image processing work.

And irrespective of which iMac you buy, if you are doing colour-critical image work then a hardware colour calibrator such as the Spyder2 Express is an absolute must. Thankfully, they are not expensive.