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Apple Desktops Discussion of Apple's desktop machines including Mac Pro, iMac, Power Mac, and mini

Considering switching to the 1499 21.5 in iMac


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StMFA

 
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This summer I'm looking to get a new computer as my current thinkpad has begun to die. I don't need a laptop because I recently purchased an iPad 2 which I use for most of my mobile needs. I'm trying to decide between a high-end custom pc or the new iMac. I essentially need it for gaming- mostly real-time strategies etc, so if I got an iMac I would need to bootcamp. The custom pc I'm looking to get would be essentially top of the line (core-i5 2500k for OCing, AMD Radeon 6970, 8gb 1600mhz RAM, 1TB SATA-6 hdd) That's poised to run me approximately 1250, whereas the new iMac would set me back 1400 (student discount), though it would be more aesthetically pleasing than a monstrous mid-tower case in addition to a 23in monitor.

Bottom Line: Is it worth the investment?
Secondary Questions: Is it worth investing the 120 to get apple care on the product, also would you recommend doing an after-market memory upgrade to 8gb since it's about half the price.
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Housekat

 
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Well, I bought my mac for gaming only and haven't looked back. Sure it was costly, but playing at 1440 resolution looks beautiful. Can't really max out the settings, but everything else is top of the line. The new ones have the 6970m 2gig cards in them, so i am sure thats definitely a boost. The huge cost difference your looking at is the screen. If you priced your top of the line pc with the screen that can support 2560x1440 and is also a ips screen, thats 1k right there, so your pc would in reality cost 2250 compared to the imac which comes with the screen. But you will definitely want the 27 with the top video card in it if its for pure gaming.

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StMFA

 
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This is true, but I was looking at the 21.5 inch model with the 6770m. The top end one is out of my price range really.
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Housekat

 
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I would take a look at notebookcheck and see how that video card ranks. Otherwise you could just use it as a monitor and switch back and forth with it, using mac side for mac, and just gaming on a pc for only games.

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StMFA

 
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I looked it up, It ranks in the mid to high area, but I'm concerned that the 512mb RAM might throttle its performance a little since most of the pc's that have the same chipset come with 1gb RAM. It's also been really hard to find any hard numbers on how well the imacs that are equipped with the 6770 perform gaming wise.
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Housekat

 
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I would save up a bit more if you really want a gaming imac. The more powerful cards are worth that added price.

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StMFA

 
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Yeah. Also would you recommend purchasing Apple Care to go with it or not?
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Housekat

 
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its a toss up, you always have a year to get it, so that should be sufficient time to see if you want it or not, just remember, all apple repairs are very costly out of warranty. But than again, it doesn't cover ANY accidental damage.

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StMFA

 
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True, I guess if I have a year I can always purchase it down the road. I think perhaps my best bet is to wait for lion for now. Right now I'm teetering between the 1499 and the 1699, where the only difference is the display. Since eventually I would probably invest in the new kanex xd converter so I can use my xbox and such, is the extra 200 worth the price for the display?
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you may want to consider something like this 27" Quad-Core i5 iMac at $1449
Refurbished iMac 27-inch 2.8GHz Intel Quad-Core i5 processor - Apple Store (U.S.)

Refurb Macs are often indistinguishable from new and come with the same warranty and ability to purchase Apple care. A lot of people on this board will swear by the Apple refurb program.

I've always wanted to be smart, handsome and modest. But, I guess I'll have to be satisfied with two out of three . . .
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Housekat

 
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Well, I suggest you go to your local apple store or best buy if it carries apples, and take a look for yourself. I think its a very noticeable difference. Also as Razormac suggested, you can always buy a refurbished one.

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StMFA

 
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I decided to go for the stock 1999 and install extra ram myself. Will be purchasing today!
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pokermaniac

 
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Congrats!....I hope you purchased the Protection Plan, for in my opinion, it is worth every penny.

EDIT: One more thing..I have a pretty knowledgeable Mac Consultant who has told me that if you are going to buy non-Apple Memory, only get Crucial or OWC. I just trust his opinion. FYI, I bought my first iMac with 4GB, and then later spent the extra money for Apple-branded Memory to upgrade to 8GB, and it worked out great.
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StMFA

 
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Thanks. So far I'm absolutely loving it. I even asked for a magic trackpad instead of the magic mouse and they just gave it to me for free. I did get apple care, which leads me to two questions. 1) i know its autoenroll, but how do I check that/ tie it to my apple id?
2) does installing crucial/owc ram void the warranty in any way? I was planning on going with crucial.
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pokermaniac

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StMFA View Post
Thanks. So far I'm absolutely loving it. I even asked for a magic trackpad instead of the magic mouse and they just gave it to me for free. I did get apple care, which leads me to two questions. 1) i know its autoenroll, but how do I check that/ tie it to my apple id?
2) does installing crucial/owc ram void the warranty in any way? I was planning on going with crucial.
As for your first question, your Apple Care is tied to your iMac automatically. There is nothing you need to do.

As far as your second question, my understanding is that it does not void your Warranty as long as you have a certified Apple Consultant do it. You can find them in your area at Apple Consultants Network However your Apple Warranty will not cover your after-market Ram of course. As a matter of fact, it may not void your Warranty if you install it yourself, for it is very easy. That I do not know. Maybe someone else can answer that, or you can call Apple and ask them.

Yea, the Magic Trackpad is the best. Much better than the Magic Mouse IMO.

Enjoy your iMac!
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