Looking to upgrade my MacBook

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'07 blk MB C2D 4GB/500GB, '11 iMac 27" i5 2.7 8GB/1TB, '13 iMac 21" i5 2.7 8GB/1TB, iPhone 6SP 64GB
Hello all, I'm looking to upgrade from my 2007 MacBook to a pre-owned iMac. I have narrowed my search down to two, but I'm having a hard time deciding on which one will be best for me since I'm not as "tech savvy" as some of you on this forum. Therefore, I would like to ask for your opinions. Here are the contestants:

27" iMac (2009)
Intel Core i5 2.6GHz (TB 3.2GHz) (too technical for me)
8GB RAM (seems good enough for me)
1TB HD (I'd never be able to fill it up, not a big deal)
Asking Price: (incl. Ship) $910 Update: SOLD

21" Imac (2011)
Intel Core i5 2.5GHz (TB 3.3GHz) (too technical for me)
4GB RAM (seems like it would be okay, but may want more (my MacBook was 3GB))
500GB HD (still couldn't fill it up, no big deal)
Asking Price: (incl.Ship) $800 Update: SOLD

both check out physically, I'm just worried that when the new OS X comes out, the 2009 may not be compatible; then I'll kinda be out of luck as far as upgrading. (At least with the 2011 I may be able to get another upgrade out of it.)
(Currently to upgrade to Yosemite, your iMac need to be 2007 or newer)

I'd like something good for daily use, (surfing the web and basic multitasking), but also able to handle computer games and photo/video editing.
 
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chas_m

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The 21-inch iMac is, obviously, a lot smaller. Also, the RAM is un-upgradeable.

To me this is a no-brainer. Get the 27" iMac. The extra RAM alone is worth the extra money.
 
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thisoldmac
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'07 blk MB C2D 4GB/500GB, '11 iMac 27" i5 2.7 8GB/1TB, '13 iMac 21" i5 2.7 8GB/1TB, iPhone 6SP 64GB
I'm starting to lean more towards the 27" now, my only concern is about the system requirements for the next OS X release. Mavericks and Yosemite require iMac 2007 and newer, if Apple decided to bump up the requirements with the next OS X release, the 2009 model may just make the cut if not fail the requirements (some features in Yosemite require a 2012 iMac or newer)... I found a similar model (2009 27") 2nd gen i5 2.66GHz with an upgraded 16GB and it says it has two hard drives? One is a 240 GB "SSD" start disk and the other is a 1 TB "SATA" disk... they're asking $1,099 for it (a little over budget but if it's worth it I can manage it). I've been doing some research and although the next OS X won't be released until later this year, some are saying the 2009 model may still meet the requirements, which is what I'm hoping for. I guess I'll just have to wing it?
 
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pigoo3

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I'm starting to lean more towards the 27" now, my only concern is about the system requirements for the next OS X release.

You're always going to run into this sort of thing when buying a used computer (Mac). Just part of the "Risk - Reward" buying used equation.:)

The 2009 27" iMac can run Yosemite…and even if this 27" iMac never had it's OS upgraded again…you would still probably get 4-5 years out of Yosemite (at least 3).

So worst case scenario…you would run Yosemite on this iMac for 3-5 years. More than likely in that period of time…you would probably be thinking of getting a newer (possibly newer used) computer anyway.

But to stay positive…I bet that you'll get OS compatibility with at least one more OS release (OS 10.11).:)

- Nick

p.s. Plus with this 27" iMac. It can be upgraded to 16gig of ram. So you have that an option as well.:)

p.p.s. It all comes down to the display size (21" vs. 27"). From a performance perspective…the 21" is better (CPU and GPU). And max. ram is higher (32gig).
 
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thisoldmac
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'07 blk MB C2D 4GB/500GB, '11 iMac 27" i5 2.7 8GB/1TB, '13 iMac 21" i5 2.7 8GB/1TB, iPhone 6SP 64GB
This is true, I've had my little black MacBook that I bought used on eBay for 5 years running Lion and it's been good to me, but now it's time to treat myself to an upgrade (hallelujah tax return)

With the iMac I have my eyes on right now, (listed in my comment above. If you care to see the listing, click here) it already has 16GB installed, plus two hard drives. (That is, if it doesn't sell before I can get the money in the bank on Monday)
Chances are, I'll use it for another 5 years or so then probably upgrade to the slim model iMac.

I'll probably keep searching until Monday, gotta have something to fall back on in case the one I have my eyes on sells.

At least I know what to look for now, thanks guys :)
 
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chscag

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The 21-inch iMac is, obviously, a lot smaller. Also, the RAM is un-upgradeable.

It's a 2011 iMac. Memory on that machine is fully upgradeable. The 2012 and 2013 models are not upgradeable.
 
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thisoldmac
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It's a 2011 iMac. Memory on that machine is fully upgradeable. The 2012 and 2013 models are not upgradeable.

That's what I thought too... *shrug*
 
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chas_m

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Thank you for the correction, Charlie. I was thinking they'd started sealing those in back that far, clearly not the case.

I should be noted that a brand spankin' new 21.5-inch (which most definitely cannot have the RAM upgraded except at the time of ordering) and with full warranty is not a lot more money than what you're paying for a six-year-old computer -- starting at $1099.

Likewise, there's a refurb 2014 iMac in the US store at the moment with 8GB of RAM (not upgradeable) for $929. Again, full warranty.
 
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'07 blk MB C2D 4GB/500GB, '11 iMac 27" i5 2.7 8GB/1TB, '13 iMac 21" i5 2.7 8GB/1TB, iPhone 6SP 64GB
I checked out Apple's list of refurbished Macs...

For the same price as the pre-owned 27" from 2009, I found a 21" 2.7GHz quad-core i5 from 2013. I also saw the 21" iMac that chas_m had mentioned with Intel HD graphics 5000 for $929.

I'm still deciding on which one I'll choose, I'm just unsure about the difference between the processors and graphics. Might any of you be able to explain, (in your own opinions) the differences between the 3 and how they rank as far as performance goes? It will probably help me out quite a bit.

Here's the specs (in one place)

21" iMac (Jun 14)
1.4GHz dual-core i5
8GB RAM, 500GB HD
Intel HD graphics 5000

21" iMac (Sep 13)
2.7GHz quad-core i5
8GB RAM, 1TB HD
Intel Iris Pro graphics

27" iMac (Oct 09)
2.66GHz quad-core i5
16GB RAM, 240GB SSD, 1TB HD
ATI Radeon HD 4850
 
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thisoldmac
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'07 blk MB C2D 4GB/500GB, '11 iMac 27" i5 2.7 8GB/1TB, '13 iMac 21" i5 2.7 8GB/1TB, iPhone 6SP 64GB
... which most definitely cannot have the RAM upgraded except at the time of ordering...

I wasn't able to configure the RAM on the $1099 21" iMac on Apple's website, but I was able to configure the $1,299 21" iMac from 8 to 16GB, but that one is out of my budget :\
 

pigoo3

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You seem to mostly be "window shopping" at this point.;) You've listed 5-6 units so far. It gets difficult to recommend what should be purchased if the target keeps moving.;)

- Nick

p.s. As you can see…good deals are selling (update on post #1). So if you find a good deal…and take too much time to decide…the unit sells…and you miss out.
 
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Hello again, just wanted to let you all know that I decided on the 21" iMac from Apple factory refurbished. It's a 2013 model with Intel Iris Pro graphics, 8GB RAM, and a 1TB hard drive. Thank you all for your help :)
 
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Iris Pro should have plenty of muscle for casual editing and production work. Not bad for gaming either. That is fairly solid specs and should last you many years.

Enjoy your new computer!
 

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