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Core i5 or Core i7

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
I plan to get an i5 or i7 machine whenever I can sell my current 20" 2.66GHz iMac... I have an interested party, so hopefully, they decide to take it off my hands so I can get my new iMac...

Well, I know the Core i7 is super fast... but would it be better to have:

the Core i5 with 8GB RAM
the Core i7 with 4GB RAM

2199.99 is my limit.... and these both are 2199.99.

Suggestions?
post #2 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by webpoet73 View Post

I plan to get an i5 or i7 machine whenever I can sell my current 20" 2.66GHz iMac... I have an interested party, so hopefully, they decide to take it off my hands so I can get my new iMac...

Well, I know the Core i7 is super fast... but would it be better to have:

the Core i5 with 8GB RAM
the Core i7 with 4GB RAM

2199.99 is my limit.... and these both are 2199.99.

Suggestions?

I would get the i5 and put the RAM in myself. Its not at all difficult on an iMac. I've done and you can too.
post #3 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by webpoet73 View Post

Well, I know the Core i7 is super fast... but would it be better to have:

the Core i5 with 8GB RAM
the Core i7 with 4GB RAM

You can always upgrade the Ram on the i7 but you can't upgrade the processor on the i5 so I'd say i7. The i7 is a good deal faster:

http://gizmodo.com/5405506/27+inch-i...-i7-vs-core-i5

4GB of Ram will be enough to get by for the vast majority of computer usage.
post #4 of 14
Thread Starter 
I thought Apple's upgrade was an 2x4GB upgrade, which 200 would be good but I see that they just add a second pair of 2GB sticks... and yeah, that is much cheaper aftermarket. I can do that myself.

Core i5 with 8GB would be a better machine than Core i7 with 4GB?
post #5 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by webpoet73 View Post

I thought Apple's upgrade was an 2x4GB upgrade, which 200 would be good but I see that they just add a second pair of 2GB sticks... and yeah, that is much cheaper aftermarket. I can do that myself.

Core i5 with 8GB would be a better machine than Core i7 with 4GB?

In most case, running a single application, Core i7 will be faster, because there is not so much software using more than 4 GB. For example CS4 only use 3 GB max of memory.
post #6 of 14
Thread Starter 
I do edit some HD video from my Canon camcorder (records in AVCHD) and it takes quite a while to transcode to AIC on my current iMac. I normally use iMovie because I haven;t figured out Final Cut Express 4.0, yet...

I could actually use a good FCE resource as well...
post #7 of 14
OK... if video encoding is your "test"... then you'll see better performance from the i7 (even with less ram).

If you like to have LOTS of things going on at one time, you'll see better performance from the i5 with more RAM... for the time being. That will change as more and more apps (and tweaks to OSX) take better advantage of the advanced CPU architectures. A year or two from now, you'll probably see a more noticeable difference from the i7 (assuming you're running latest versions of software.)

Short answer?... was provided my Marvin. You can always upgrade the RAM later... whatever CPU you buy is forever.
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post #8 of 14
Thread Starter 
Awesome suggestions, guys... I think i will go with the i7 and upgrade the RAM later... perhaps, it will become cheaper by the time I upgrade. At least these have 4 slots, so I don't have to waste the 4GB it comes with. I can just add on to that.
post #9 of 14
You ought to be able to save up for additional RAM pretty quick! ... If Apple sells it for $200... you should be able to get it on the open market fro less than $100 if you keep your eyes open! 2-3 months from now, you'll find yourself with BOTH the i7 AND 8GB!
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post #10 of 14
This is such a first world problem. I suspect you are not a heavy video producer or you wouldn't have to ask. Doing most any set of tasks, I would be surprised if you could detect the difference in the performance of those two machines. With the new core i series, you really couldn't make a bad choice if you tried.
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post #11 of 14
Thread Starter 
I have decided on the i7 - stock configuration. I do worry about the availability at my local Apple Store. I don't want to order it, I want to be able to pick it up. However, in the mean-time, I still have to unload my current iMac. I hopefully have a buyer. If not, I may not even get around to trying to sell it until after the holidays. The next couple of weeks are going to be pretty busy.

I have also thought about waiting on the next gen - maybe the i7 price will come down by then. Who knows. It's always a crapshoot, anyway.

My fiancee saw the 27" screen and said "ridiculous." I said, "no... glorious!"

Thanks for all of the feedback!
post #12 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by webpoet73 View Post

I have decided on the i7 - stock configuration. I do worry about the availability at my local Apple Store. I don't want to order it, I want to be able to pick it up. However, in the mean-time, I still have to unload my current iMac. I hopefully have a buyer. If not, I may not even get around to trying to sell it until after the holidays. The next couple of weeks are going to be pretty busy.

I have also thought about waiting on the next gen - maybe the i7 price will come down by then. Who knows. It's always a crapshoot, anyway.

My fiancee saw the 27" screen and said "ridiculous." I said, "no... glorious!"

Thanks for all of the feedback!

To finance my beast, I sold a mac on ebay, and another on craig's list. Thank god for that amazing resell value.

On another note, it will take you about ten minutes before you start calling for a 30" iMac. There is no such thing as too much screen.
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post #13 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by webpoet73 View Post

I have decided on the i7 - stock configuration. I do worry about the availability at my local Apple Store. I don't want to order it, I want to be able to pick it up. However, in the mean-time, I still have to unload my current iMac. I hopefully have a buyer. If not, I may not even get around to trying to sell it until after the holidays. The next couple of weeks are going to be pretty busy.

I have also thought about waiting on the next gen - maybe the i7 price will come down by then. Who knows. It's always a crapshoot, anyway.

My fiancee saw the 27" screen and said "ridiculous." I said, "no... glorious!"

Thanks for all of the feedback!

Be aware that the retail stores are not stocking the i7. You will have to order it which will probably take 10 days to 2 weeks. I ordered memory (2x2gb kit) for my i7 from Amazon.com for $89. Installation was very easy - about 5 minutes.
post #14 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by TonyC View Post

Be aware that the retail stores are not stocking the i7. You will have to order it which will probably take 10 days to 2 weeks. I ordered memory (2x2gb kit) for my i7 from Amazon.com for $89. Installation was very easy - about 5 minutes.

I looked at the Apple Online Store... 2 weeks shipping time for all of the 27" models. These things must be HOT! Also, no Best Buy stores have the 27" either online or in their stores in the zip codes that I shop in around Atlanta.

Apparently, Apple has a winner in the 27" models. C2D or Core i5/Core i7 models. Fantastic.
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