Imac upgrades with Leopard

Posted:
in Future Apple Hardware edited January 2014
I sold my 20" G5 and I'm joansing pretty hard for a new one... its been 4 weeks



I'm trying to hold out until Leopard is released. What kind of upgrades, if any, can we expect for the Imac's when it comes out.



The alternative is going for the 7600GT in the 24" as the 7300, although a decent card, is not going to be viable in 18 months or so. I'm not an avid gamer, I use the Imac for a Unix box.. but.. playing UT2k4 is a need every blue moon.



Cheers,



PhtB0y

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 3
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 15,323moderator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by phtb0y


    I sold my 20" G5 and I'm joansing pretty hard for a new one... its been 4 weeks



    I'm trying to hold out until Leopard is released. What kind of upgrades, if any, can we expect for the Imac's when it comes out.



    The alternative is going for the 7600GT in the 24" as the 7300, although a decent card, is not going to be viable in 18 months or so. I'm not an avid gamer, I use the Imac for a Unix box.. but.. playing UT2k4 is a need every blue moon.



    If you're not an avid gamer then the 7300 is fine. Even the X1600 plays UT2k4 with everything at max very smoothly. I just installed Half-Life 2 on a bootcamped iMac with x1600 and it also plays at everything max except FSAA and anisotropic filtering, which are at none and 4x respectively. We're talking about full environment reflections and refractions.



    A new iMac is about 2 months away at least. Even if you get it then, they might upgrade that in another two months so I'd suggest buying one now. Also, make sure you need the 24" one. I know it supports HD resolution but the 20" is a pretty decent size.



    Of course, getting the higher card with the 24" might tide you over when UT2k7 comes out. I don't see the iMac getting many upgrades because they need to find cards that fit within the temperatures the iMac can handle. You've also got to remember that the cards in the iMacs are underclocked and games don't have multi-threaded OpenGL yet.
  • Reply 2 of 3
    Excellent reply!



    Yes.. I've long thought about the "need" for a 24". It looks damn nice in the store but I have to say my 20" G5 was pretty large. Who knows..



    The info on the games is great.. I've been out of hardware for a while. I used to own a hardware company.. AMD certified and all that stuff..



    So.. the 7600 is a nice to have IYO and not a must?



    Thanks again.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Marvin


    If you're not an avid gamer then the 7300 is fine. Even the X1600 plays UT2k4 with everything at max very smoothly. I just installed Half-Life 2 on a bootcamped iMac with x1600 and it also plays at everything max except FSAA and anisotropic filtering, which are at none and 4x respectively. We're talking about full environment reflections and refractions.



    A new iMac is about 2 months away at least. Even if you get it then, they might upgrade that in another two months so I'd suggest buying one now. Also, make sure you need the 24" one. I know it supports HD resolution but the 20" is a pretty decent size.



    Of course, getting the higher card with the 24" might tide you over when UT2k7 comes out. I don't see the iMac getting many upgrades because they need to find cards that fit within the temperatures the iMac can handle. You've also got to remember that the cards in the iMacs are underclocked and games don't have multi-threaded OpenGL yet.



  • Reply 3 of 3
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 15,323moderator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by phtb0y


    So.. the 7600 is a nice to have IYO and not a must?



    It really depends on how long you plan on having the machine but the X1600 is quite capable of handling all the current games. My brother bought a 20" iMac over a Mini because he wanted a computer that would last him 3 years. But GPUs are increasing so quickly (Moore's law cubed I read) that 3 years for any machine is pushing it. They've got quad core CPUs coming out next year so in the space of just 6 months, Apple could easily have iMacs that are double the speed of the current ones.



    Not too long ago, I remember people raving about the Geforce 6600GT - no doubt because it had come down in price - but now they have the 8800GT as well as the ones in between and that card is at times double the performance of ATIs highest end card.



    I've personally always had reservations about Apple's idea of people buying a whole new machine instead of parts but on the Intel side, I'm beginning to see why it makes sense.



    Another thing about the 24" iMac is that when you increase the spec, you get pretty close to the lowest end Mac Pro - for some reason Apple make the default configuration quad 2.66 but you can lower it to quad 2.0. That is not considering the display of course but the iMac display isn't that good for serious gaming anyway. Half-Life 2 showed tearing as well as Doom 3 and Quake 4. It's mainly at vertical objects and moving the view left to right. I'm pretty sure vertical sync didn't help and the iMacs seem to have at best 14ms response times but the exact specs aren't clear. The cinema displays are 14ms so I can only assume the iMac ones are the same or worse. You can buy a 19" 2ms display for about £200-300.



    I honestly think that the 20" iMac with X1600 would do just fine performance-wise though. Like I say if UT2k4 is your favourite game then it will play it smoothly with everything at maximum and full 1680x1050 widescreen. Plus the 24" has 540,000 extra pixels that could be DOA.



    Overall, I'd say that the 7600 is something you should consider if you plan to play UT2k7 at a decent enough quality. I read the recommended card was at least a 6600GT or 7800GT:



    http://www.beyondunreal.com/main/ut2007/about.php



    But you can always get a new iMac next year. Actually, the screenshots in that link look a bit like Half-Life 2 with the bloom and HDRI and that plays at full quality on the 20" so I'd expect UT2k7 to run adequately.
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