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  1. #1


    Member Since
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    Which iMac model would I need?
    My sweet husband surprised me with an iMac for Christmas. I haven't opened the box yet because I am worried. He bought the i3 version. He is not into computers and just bought me the model that the salesman recommended. Do you think I should take it back and upgrade to the i5 or i7? I want to use it for editing photos in photoshop and avchd video editing.

  2. #2

    pigoo3's Avatar
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    An iMac with an "i3" cpu should be fine...but it's always hard to know exactly how demanding any individual users photo & video editing is...and you really won't know until you start doing some editing.

    But I think that unless your photo & video editing is approaching the level of a professional (someone who does this sort of thing at their job 40 hours/week).

    The iMac with the "i3" is no "slowpoke"...so it should be fine.

    - Nick

    p.s. If you had an older Macintosh computer that you were upgrading from...and were doing photo & video editing on (and this editing was slow)...then we would have a better frame of reference for a performance comparison.
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
    - Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some slow computer tips: Speedup
    - Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
    - Apple Battery Info. Battery

  3. #3

    spiritdave's Avatar
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    27" iMac 2010 - i5 Quad Core 2.8ghz
    My brother just bought an i3 iMac and he produces music on his. Full band stuff.

    Believe me ... you will not need the faster processor if you're not doing anything mental like 3D Graphics (as I do ... I make video games for a living so have a higher spec system).

    Really for general and even some power use, the i3 is absolutely fine. It's a lot faster than my old PC and I did music and video and 3D on that

  4. #4

    harryb2448's Avatar
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    Agree with Nick./ Unless you are a professional photographer editing thousands of wedding photos etc., or a graphic design artist, the iMac will be just fine.
    Hang on to those original install discs like grim death! Using OS X.7 or later make a bootable USB thumb drive before running Installer!

  5. #5

    TattooedMac's Avatar
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    Welcome to M-F Terri . . . . . . Why not go ahead and set it up and see if it does what you want it to do.
    I believe Apple have a 30day return policy and if its not to your liking pack it back into the box and take it back to the store. When they find out you want to upgrade from that to i5 or i7 i dont think there will be any hesitation on there part ....
    Worth the hassle of unpacking and then repacking IMO

    Cheers
    Dont forget to use the Reputation System if someone has helped you out !!!
    Arguing with a zealot is only slightly easier than tunneling through a mountain with your forehead!!!!!
    MoTM ☆☆☆

  6. #6

    pigoo3's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TattooedMac View Post
    Why not go ahead and set it up and see if it does what you want it to do.
    I believe Apple have a 30day return policy and if its not to your liking pack it back into the box and take it back to the store. When they find out you want to upgrade from that to i5 or i7 i dont think there will be any hesitation on there part ....
    Worth the hassle of unpacking and then repacking IMO
    TattooedMac...this would normally be my advice as well...and if there is a 30 day refund policy (with no penalties)...then I'm in 100% agreement with you!

    I reviewed Apple's written refund policy for the US:

    Apple Sales and Refund Policy

    ...and all I'm seeing is there's a 14-day window to return a computer...AND there's a 10% restocking fee. But...maybe I missed a detail or two...since as I was trying to read all of it...my head started spinning & my eyes got all fuzzy. Just too many legal "if's, and's, and but's!

    - Nick
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
    - Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some slow computer tips: Speedup
    - Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
    - Apple Battery Info. Battery

  7. #7

    TattooedMac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pigoo3 View Post

    ...and all I'm seeing is there's a 14-day window to return a computer...AND there's a 10% restocking fee. But...maybe I missed a detail or two...since as I was trying to read all of it...my head started spinning & my eyes got all fuzzy. Just too many legal "if's, and's, and but's!

    - Nick
    Ahhhh Thanks Nick. I said 30 days because it sounded like a nice round monthly number and Seemed right without searching for it.
    But to be totally honest i did have the 14 days in my head thinking that this is the Apple return policy , and then I made a mental note to look for the right time-frame, and to come back and amend my post if need be. Time flew and it past me by. Thanks for doing the hard yards for me

    I know "Dont post if you havnt the facts", but i was going to go look ... HONESTLY lol
    The restocking fee didnt even come into my head .. .

    Better you than me with the head spin and fuzzy eyes haha

    At least the restocking fee is a maybe .....
    including the assessment of a 10% restocking fee on any open box item.
    .
    So if everyone is nice and you want to upgrade they could well waiver the restocking fee ... Bonus
    Dont forget to use the Reputation System if someone has helped you out !!!
    Arguing with a zealot is only slightly easier than tunneling through a mountain with your forehead!!!!!
    MoTM ☆☆☆

  8. #8

    pigoo3's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TattooedMac View Post
    Ahhhh Thanks Nick. I said 30 days because it sounded like a nice round monthly number and Seemed right without searching for it.
    But to be totally honest i did have the 14 days in my head thinking that this is the Apple return policy...
    I think that we are both "mentally" on the "same page". Normally 30 days (in the United States & maybe Australia as well) is the period where you can return most items without any sort of penalty.

    If someone out of the blue asked me this question regarding Apple before this thread was posted...I think that I would have said you had 14 days BEFORE there was any restocking fee. But after reading Apple's US return policy (unless I missed a detail) I guess as soon as you open the box on day #1...you have 14 days to return it...but still have to pay a 10% restocking fee.

    This to me kind of stinks...since there are so many "unknowns" buyers have when it comes to:

    - Will this computer do what I need it to do?
    - Will this computer be fast enough for me?
    - Will this computer fit on my desk?
    - Will I like the display?
    - Will I even like a Macintosh computer (buyer being a Windows switcher)?

    ...which a buyer really doesn't know until you get it home, load up the software, open some files...and start using it. But then again...I know there's a certain segment of the population that would take advantage of a return policy (without a restocking penalty).

    I guess a good "work-around" would be if folks could take their software apps & files to an Apple Store...load them up...and take it for a test drive. But then I guess there would be a lot of security & privacy issues...and who wants to do this with lots of "strangers" in the store looking over your shoulder while your "test-driving" a computer. Unless Apple could have some sort of private room or booth for this sort of thing.

    Maybe I just came up with an idea for Apple Stores to think about!

    - Nick
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
    - Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some slow computer tips: Speedup
    - Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
    - Apple Battery Info. Battery

  9. #9


    Member Since
    Dec 26, 2010
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    Thanks all
    Sorry I didn't get back here sooner. I didn't get any more e-mail messages saying that people had replied. Guess I better check my settings.

    I checked with apple and they said they have a 10% restocking fee. So we took back the i3 to my daughter's college. The don't carry the i5 or i7 and there is no Apple Store close. So, I went ahead and ordered the i7 online. It won't be here for a few days. I'm sure I'll have a lot of questions once it comes. Can't wait to learn all there is to learn!!

  10. #10

    spiritdave's Avatar
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    Dec 21, 2010
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    So wait ... you upgraded for what reason?

  11. #11

    spiritdave's Avatar
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    Dec 21, 2010
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    Specs:
    27" iMac 2010 - i5 Quad Core 2.8ghz
    Btw, don't get me wrong, if you wanted faster that's cool. Just not sure it will make much difference to you
    iMac 27" - i5 Quad Core 2.8ghz - 4GB Ram - 1TB HDD - Radeon HD 5750 - MacOS 10.6.5 - Magic Mouse - Wireless Keyboard

  12. #12

    pigoo3's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Terri French View Post
    So we took back the i3 to my daughter's college. The don't carry the i5 or i7 and there is no Apple Store close.
    Just a thought. In your initial post in this thread you said that your husband bought you an iMac...and because your husband doesn't know much about computers he got the "i3" model (because that's what the salesperson recommended).

    In your husband's defense ...since you mentioned that this college-based store didn't have "i5" & "i7" iMacs...he probably got you the best they had...since they probably only had "core-2-duo" and "i3" models.

    Enjoy that "i7 iMac"...I'm sure it's going to be a screamer!

    - Nick
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
    - Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some slow computer tips: Speedup
    - Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
    - Apple Battery Info. Battery

  13. #13


    Member Since
    Dec 26, 2010
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    I agree 100%
    Quote Originally Posted by pigoo3 View Post
    In your husband's defense ...since you mentioned that this college-based store didn't have "i5" & "i7" iMacs...he probably got you the best they had...since they probably only had "core-2-duo" and "i3" models.

    Enjoy that "i7 iMac"...I'm sure it's going to be a screamer!

    - Nick
    I totally agree. He thought he was getting the fastest one. He is the best. When he found out there was a faster model, he wanted me to upgrade. I'm sure we will love the i7. I am looking forward to editing my videos on it. We live in a great location for hiking and recreation. We get out a lot and take many videos of our activities. Photography is my hobby. I have a lot of fun putting shows together about our experiences. I am not a professional, but have studio gear and take lots of professional type photos for family and friends. It's a fun hobby for me and I don't want to ruin it by turning it into a job. But, I process many, many photos and speed is important to me.

  14. #14

    pigoo3's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Terri French View Post
    Photography is my hobby. I have a lot of fun putting shows together about our experiences. I am not a professional, but have studio gear and take lots of professional type photos for family and friends. It's a fun hobby for me and I don't want to ruin it by turning it into a job. But, I process many, many photos and speed is important to me.
    Sounds like you're a "serious hobbyist"...and I totally agree about not turning it into a profession...since many times the fun of the hobby can be turned into the drudgery of "work". But I also know that it's not always the case...sometimes both "passions" can coexist.

    You didn't mention what display size you got in your initial post with the "i3" iMac...since both the 21" & 27" display are options with the "i3". But since you are getting the "i7"...it only comes with the 27" display...which is really an AWESOME display. You will REALLY love that 27" display with the i7 cpu.

    This is definitely the best Macintosh computer setup you can get outside of getting the much more expensive Mac Pro (IMHO)...and even with the expensive Mac Pro...you would still have to add another $999 to get the same 27" Apple display...so the 27" i7 iMac is really one heck of a value!

    Congrats again,

    - Nick
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
    - Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some slow computer tips: Speedup
    - Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
    - Apple Battery Info. Battery

  15. #15


    Member Since
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    Quote Originally Posted by pigoo3 View Post
    Sounds like you're a "serious hobbyist"...and I totally agree about not turning it into a profession...since many times the fun of the hobby can be turned into the drudgery of "work". But I also know that it's not always the case...sometimes both "passions" can coexist.

    You didn't mention what display size you got in your initial post with the "i3" iMac...since both the 21" & 27" display are options with the "i3". But since you are getting the "i7"...it only comes with the 27" display...which is really an AWESOME display. You will REALLY love that 27" display with the i7 cpu.

    This is definitely the best Macintosh computer setup you can get outside of getting the much more expensive Mac Pro (IMHO)...and even with the expensive Mac Pro...you would still have to add another $999 to get the same 27" Apple display...so the 27" i7 iMac is really one heck of a value!

    Congrats again,

    - Nick
    I'm getting very anxious to get it. But, it hasn't even shipped yet so I'll have a bit of a wait I'm afraid. The original purchase was a 27" as well. Now I've just got to decide how much additional memory to purchase. I'm going to get it from OWC or Crucial.

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