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  1. #1
    CPU improvements
    How much better (faster,reliability) are CPU's in the latest iMacs compared to my iMac 5,1 (Conroe)? 10%, 20% better?
    What else has improved? Considerable or incremental?
    Basically I'm looking to get the most out of my present iMac 5,1 (Adobe CS mainly not games) but at some point I would imagine I will need to upgrade entirely, particularly by the time my daughter reaches senior school in 8 years time.
    A MacBook might be the way to go for her rather than a desktop.

  2. #2
    CPU improvements
    Raz0rEdge's Avatar
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    Significantly faster, cooler is the bottom line answer, but you can search for "Core2Duo vs i3/i5/i7 benchmarks" in Google and get a LOT of data proving that point..

    There are significant improvements between 2 back to back generations of a CPU. But it's not just the CPU that affects overall performance as much as the rest of the system as well. Memory and system bus speeds also make a big difference. Most newer systems now have memory speeds at 1333 MHz or faster, while the older system were at 667 MHz or so..that's nearly double the speed..
    --
    Regards
    ...Ashwin


  3. #3
    It would seem the microarchitecture has been 'improved' upon twicefold since core2duo days too.
    All things being equal would you say, as a rule of thumb, it looks like every three years is the time to ditch and buy again? Maybe I'll hang fire for now and wait until my daughter has a mobile educational requirement. Meantime I'll just limp along with my Snow Leopard enabled 5,1.

  4. #4
    CPU improvements
    Raz0rEdge's Avatar
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    Well technology is one of those things that is hard to chase and keep up with..but Moore's Law does say that the capability of hardware doubles every 2 years and that's getting shorter all along. So if you look at your 3 year window, you would be upgrading to a machine that's at least twice as better as the one you currently have..

    But the rule of thumb that I actually follow is upgrade only when what you have is no longer functioning or if you need to make something else functioning that requires an upgrade. So if your current iMac is working fine with Snow Leopard, there is no real reason to go looking for change..

    One of the primary reasons that most people upgrade their machines is due to forced obsolescence on the part of the manufacturer. But even through that you can get pretty far..there are a large number of folks in these forums running G3/G4/G5 based Mac's from 2002 or so with no problems on Leopard.

    Now Leopard is the highest they can go and Apple will likely not make any more updates, security related or otherwise, to that version of OS X. So the only thing that will force those folks to upgrade is something catastrophic..
    --
    Regards
    ...Ashwin


  5. #5
    Quite. I got so far with my 7200/90. Glad I at least had the foresight go with an intel based chip machine and a 64 bit one at that. At least it bought me some time before it's totally obsolete although I'm not sure what I can do to avoid becoming obsolete.

  6. #6
    CPU improvements
    Raz0rEdge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jpwoods View Post
    Quite. I got so far with my 7200/90. Glad I at least had the foresight go with an intel based chip machine and a 64 bit one at that. At least it bought me some time before it's totally obsolete although I'm not sure what I can do to avoid becoming obsolete.
    Nothing actually..technology is MEANT to be obsoleted by newer versions/variations of it..if that weren't the case then we'd all still be playing with vacuum tubes and punch cards..

    From building my own PCs for a long time and staying ultra updated on the latest development in memory, system and CPU technologies, I learned that things change very quickly and it can be quite expensive to upgrade. Back in the day the forced obsolescence came by way of changing the darn CPU socket which essentially limited the newest processor you could go with..

    The moment I stopped chasing that ghost, things got easier. My advice to people generally is buy the MOST computer (whatever it may be) that you can afford right now. If it does everything you want right now and more, chances are it will continue to do so for a while to come unless what you need it for changes dramatically at which point you might have to upgrade to match your new needs..

    My 27" iMac i7 2.8 GHz was the most that could be bought in early 2009..now some 3 years later, the iMac has gotten better but my iMac chugs along without any problems and meets the needs I bought it for..
    --
    Regards
    ...Ashwin


  7. #7
    Thanks for the tech insight but I meant myself personally. Staying curious and fit is the only way to go.

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