Personal computing discussed

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confusedpenguin
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Buying a Mac tonight

Sun Aug 30, 2015 7:28 pm

I'm going to go ahead and order an iMac tonight. It will be my second Apple computer I've ever owned, the first being an 800 Mhz (IIRC) PowerBook G4 when I was just getting out of college. I will mostly use it for Netflix, YouTube, email, dating sites (marriage-minded), music, and I might throw World of Warcraft at it too. I've made up my mind on a Mac. I understand I'm paying more money for Apple hardware, and I don't need the same lecture I used to give to people when they were wanting to shell out double the price for Apple hardware when they could pay much much less for a PC equivalent. My mom's neighbor just retired from the FBI internet crimes division, and I noticed he has an iMac sitting in his office at home. I asked him about it and he wouldn't say much other than it's a good computer. So, with my mind being made up, should I pay $1,100 for the basic model iMac with a 1.4 Ghz Core i5 processor and Intel HD 5000 graphics, or should I shell out the extra $200 and go with the 2.7 Ghz Core i5 with Intel Iris Pro graphics?
 
JustAnEngineer
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Re: Buying a Mac tonight

Sun Aug 30, 2015 7:39 pm

confusedpenguin wrote:
Should I pay $1,100 for the basic model iMac with a 1.4 Ghz Core i5 processor and Intel HD 5000 graphics, or should I shell out the extra $200 and go with the 2.7 Ghz Core i5 with Intel Iris Pro graphics?
No. Those things are insanely overpriced. The 1.4 GHz dual-core version is a real loser.
i7-6700K, NT06-Pro, GA-Z170N-Gaming5, 32 GiB, RX Vega56, SM951, 5TB HDD, Blu-ray, FTZ01, SX800-LTi, C32HG70, RK-9000BR, MX518
 
whm1974
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Re: Buying a Mac tonight

Sun Aug 30, 2015 7:46 pm

My biggest problem with the iMac is that they are All In Ones, meaning that they are very costly to repair or upgrade if you upgrade them at all. I don'y why Apple won't make a standard tower.
 
confusedpenguin
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Re: Buying a Mac tonight

Sun Aug 30, 2015 7:46 pm

So get the faster one?
 
JustAnEngineer
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Re: Buying a Mac tonight

Sun Aug 30, 2015 7:49 pm

One of them is a dual-core ultrabook built into a 1920x1080 21½" monitor. The other one is a desktop-replacement quad-core laptop built into a 1920x1080 21½" monitor. Neither one is a good value, but a 1.4 GHz dual-core mobile CPU really sucks for the sorts of things that you might do with a desktop computer (like gaming).
Last edited by JustAnEngineer on Sun Aug 30, 2015 7:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.
i7-6700K, NT06-Pro, GA-Z170N-Gaming5, 32 GiB, RX Vega56, SM951, 5TB HDD, Blu-ray, FTZ01, SX800-LTi, C32HG70, RK-9000BR, MX518
 
derFunkenstein
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Re: Buying a Mac tonight

Sun Aug 30, 2015 7:49 pm

If you're going to get one, get the $1299 Iris Pro model with the full quad-core. The intro model is an ultrabook processor.
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whm1974
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Re: Buying a Mac tonight

Sun Aug 30, 2015 7:49 pm

If you really really have your heart set on MacOS X, then yes.
 
whm1974
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Re: Buying a Mac tonight

Sun Aug 30, 2015 7:52 pm

For $1300 I think I build a better system then that iMac.
 
JustAnEngineer
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Re: Buying a Mac tonight

Sun Aug 30, 2015 7:55 pm

Last edited by JustAnEngineer on Sun Aug 30, 2015 8:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.
i7-6700K, NT06-Pro, GA-Z170N-Gaming5, 32 GiB, RX Vega56, SM951, 5TB HDD, Blu-ray, FTZ01, SX800-LTi, C32HG70, RK-9000BR, MX518
 
whm1974
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Re: Buying a Mac tonight

Sun Aug 30, 2015 8:00 pm

A refurbished Inspiron 3847 is a good deal.


And install a video card in it and you will have a gaming system for not much money.
 
DPete27
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Re: Buying a Mac tonight

Sun Aug 30, 2015 8:08 pm

confusedpenguin wrote:
My mom's neighbor just retired from the FBI internet crimes division, and I noticed he has an iMac sitting in his office at home.

THIS is what sold you on a Mac?!?!
Main: i5-3570K, ASRock Z77 Pro4-M, MSI RX480 8G, 500GB Crucial BX100, 2 TB Samsung EcoGreen F4, 16GB 1600MHz G.Skill @1.25V, EVGA 550-G2, Silverstone PS07B
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confusedpenguin
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Re: Buying a Mac tonight

Sun Aug 30, 2015 8:18 pm

Yes, I plan on doing many many horrible terrible illegal things with it and I would like to get away with it. No, I just have the money to spend on it now, and I'd like to buy a Mac. I haven't owned one in a while and it's just a choice I would like to make to buy one. I just want to make sure it will do what I need it to do. Basic games, and internet stuff, music, movies, and I might buy a decent USB DAC to power some Klipsch 2.1s. I like the look and feel of OSX, and would like to have a Mac to play around with and maybe tinker with, break it, reinstall the OS to fix it, and learn about it. I've messed with Windows and Ubuntu enough to know them fairly well, now it is time for something different.
 
Arbiter Odie
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Re: Buying a Mac tonight

Sun Aug 30, 2015 8:29 pm

*twitch*

Skylake... Maxwell.... next refresh soon.....

But if you're in a hurry, yeah, get the one with the i5. Also, from personal experience, go with the magic trackpad instead of the magic mouse. Get a different mouse to preserve your sanity.



EDIT Tracking down un-needed commas.
Intel E3 1246 (essentially a 4770k) - Asrock C226ws - 32GB ECC ram - Saphire RX480 (undervolted) - Vertex 4, 120GB - 2x Toshiba, 4TB - Hitachi, 4TB
 
the
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Re: Buying a Mac tonight

Sun Aug 30, 2015 8:37 pm

The only worthwhile iMac is the model with the 5K resolution screen. The rest of the line is a very 'meh'.

If you are set on a Mac with real Apple hardware, you're better off finding an older 2009/2010 Mac Pro and then popping a video card upgrade into it. Single threaded performance is actually higher than the entry level iMac due to the Mac Pro's higher clock speed and you'll have more cores (though there are indeed some faster iMac configs). With a video card upgrade, you can have something far faster than what Apple offers. The only area where the iMac would inherently lead would be with its PCIe based SSD and that's only assuming you don't speed the money on a PCIe based SSD upgrade.

In Apple's quest for the perfect form factor they forgot that the older expandable models can be upgraded to faster configures than what they currently offer.
Dual Opteron 6376, 96 GB DDR3, Asus KGPE-D16, GTX 970
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whm1974
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Re: Buying a Mac tonight

Sun Aug 30, 2015 8:40 pm

I like the look and feel of OSX, and would like to have a Mac to play around with and maybe tinker with, break it, reinstall the OS to fix it, and learn about it. I've messed with Windows and Ubuntu enough to know them fairly well, now it is time for something different.


I have never used MacOS X so I can't say anything about its' merits. But a few GUIs for Linux do allow you to tweak them to look like MacOS X.
 
Arbiter Odie
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Re: Buying a Mac tonight

Sun Aug 30, 2015 8:48 pm

the wrote:
The only worthwhile iMac is the model with the 5K resolution screen. The rest of the line is a very 'meh'.

If you are set on a Mac with real Apple hardware, you're better off finding an older 2009/2010 Mac Pro and then popping a video card upgrade into it. Single threaded performance is actually higher than the entry level iMac due to the Mac Pro's higher clock speed and you'll have more cores (though there are indeed some faster iMac configs). With a video card upgrade, you can have something far faster than what Apple offers. The only area where the iMac would inherently lead would be with its PCIe based SSD and that's only assuming you don't speed the money on a PCIe based SSD upgrade.

In Apple's quest for the perfect form factor they forgot that the older expandable models can be upgraded to faster configures than what they currently offer.



The processor speed in a 2010 Mac Pro compares poorly to the iMac we're looking at (the i5).

Mac Pro (Nehalem): 2.8 GHz, turbo to 3.06GHz
iMac (i5 Haswell): 2.7 GHz, turbo to 3.2GHz

Base clock is a smidge higher. Turbo is a little lower. The IPC is very much a factor. The Nehalem chips are pre-sandybridge, whereas the iMac is using Haswell. I'm pretty sure the iMac spanks the Mac Pro except in rare highly threaded scenarios, like handbrake.
Intel E3 1246 (essentially a 4770k) - Asrock C226ws - 32GB ECC ram - Saphire RX480 (undervolted) - Vertex 4, 120GB - 2x Toshiba, 4TB - Hitachi, 4TB
 
Flatland_Spider
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Re: Buying a Mac tonight

Sun Aug 30, 2015 9:02 pm

If you just want something to mess around with, buy something refurbished. It will save you a couple of dollars compared to new stuff. It won't be the latest and greatest, but it will do what you want.

http://www.apple.com/shop/browse/home/specialdeals/mac
https://www.powermax.com/

May I also suggest the Mac Mini? It's cheaper, smaller, and doesn't have a built in monitor.

My suggestion about Apple hardware, buy the top of the line stuff. The hardware isn't really serviceable, so buy the best you can afford then ride it for four to five years.

whm1974 wrote:
I have never used MacOS X so I can't say anything about its' merits. But a few GUIs for Linux do allow you to tweak them to look like MacOS X.


OS X is nice for a compromised Unix workstation. I like it much better then Windows, but it's not FreeBSD or Linux.

The Linux GUI clones aren't the same. OS X has its quirks that Linux GUIs don't replicate. They don't replicate them because they should have been fixed a while ago.
 
sweatshopking
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Re: Buying a Mac tonight

Sun Aug 30, 2015 9:04 pm

Haha says wants advice about which mac, nerds tell him no. You gotta ask adisor, EU, or deanjo, brah
 
whm1974
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Re: Buying a Mac tonight

Sun Aug 30, 2015 9:24 pm

May I also suggest the Mac Mini? It's cheaper, smaller, and doesn't have a built in monitor.


Apple should really make a bigger deluxe version of the Mac Mini. Something way more powerful.
 
LASR
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Re: Buying a Mac tonight

Sun Aug 30, 2015 9:46 pm

Basic rules for buying Mac hardware:

- Always buy refurb.
- The cheapest model has the worst value.
- Understand that nothing is upgradable. So choose a model that has everything you'll need for the next 3 years.
- Don't waste money on AppleCare.

Source: Owned a lot of Apple hardware over the years
- Macbook Pro 13
- Macbook Pro 17
- MacBook Pro Retina 15
- Macbook 13.3
- MacMini
- Self-built Hackintosh Pro
 
Atradeimos
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Re: Buying a Mac tonight

Sun Aug 30, 2015 9:50 pm

JustAnEngineer wrote:


It sounds like OP might want working internet, which is far from guaranteed when it comes to Dell computers.

For the amount of time you'd invest in keeping that thing running, I'd say go DIY. If you have more money than time, then don't get the entry level iMac. It's the "rental fleet" model, meant for mass corporate deployments, not for individuals who might want to keep it for a few years.

PS: My sophomore year (long time ago now), I ended up buying and wearing this:

Image

Don't go that route. Seriously.
 
Arbiter Odie
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Re: Buying a Mac tonight

Sun Aug 30, 2015 9:58 pm

LASR wrote:
Basic rules for buying Mac hardware:

- Always buy refurb.
- The cheapest model has the worst value.
- Understand that nothing is upgradable. So choose a model that has everything you'll need for the next 3 years.
- Don't waste money on AppleCare.

Source: Owned a lot of Apple hardware over the years
- Macbook Pro 13
- Macbook Pro 17
- MacBook Pro Retina 15
- Macbook 13.3
- MacMini
- Self-built Hackintosh Pro



The RAM used to be upgradable, though they've started soldering it down in the portables. The hard-drives sorta are. But the difficulty in opening up the new iMac shell is very significant. You are right to treat them as non-upgradable.

I don't agree with the the AppleCare thing, though. The solder issues with both the NVIDIA and ATI chips were really bad, and having AppleCare would make walking into the Apple Store and requesting a replacement much less daunting. And they've had screen issues in the past too. I would always buy AppleCare.

As far as the refurb goes, it depends on the individual buyer. It can make the purchase lose a little of that "Shiny/New" feel, knowing somebody else had it before. If you don't mind that, you can save some money.
Intel E3 1246 (essentially a 4770k) - Asrock C226ws - 32GB ECC ram - Saphire RX480 (undervolted) - Vertex 4, 120GB - 2x Toshiba, 4TB - Hitachi, 4TB
 
confusedpenguin
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Re: Buying a Mac tonight

Sun Aug 30, 2015 10:01 pm

Ok. I just ordered it. It will be here Wednesday. I took some advice. I'm ADHD, so I'm horrible at taking people's advice. Give me some credit here. Lol. Anyway, didn't get AppleCare. Got a better model. The 27 inch model, with the 3.2 Ghz Core i5 (should last me a couple of years), GeForce GT 755 1GB (Hopefully WoW will run ok with that. I didn't get the Retina display. I'm used to regular displays, so I won't mind since I won't know what I'm missing out on, 8 gigs of ram, 1 TB 7200 rpm, (I didn't go with more ram or a solid state drive since I do have a budget limit). Anyway, hope I did ok.
 
Arbiter Odie
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Re: Buying a Mac tonight

Sun Aug 30, 2015 10:06 pm

Hope you end up liking it. My only thought is that the hard drive might feel slow. But, on the bright side, El Capitan is just around the corner :D
Intel E3 1246 (essentially a 4770k) - Asrock C226ws - 32GB ECC ram - Saphire RX480 (undervolted) - Vertex 4, 120GB - 2x Toshiba, 4TB - Hitachi, 4TB
 
whm1974
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Re: Buying a Mac tonight

Sun Aug 30, 2015 10:06 pm

Got a better model. The 27 inch model, with the 3.2 Ghz Core i5 (should last me a couple of years), GeForce GT 755 1GB (Hopefully WoW will run ok with that. I didn't get the Retina display. I'm used to regular displays, so I won't mind since I won't know what I'm missing out on, 8 gigs of ram, 1 TB 7200 rpm


Quad core right?
 
confusedpenguin
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Re: Buying a Mac tonight

Sun Aug 30, 2015 10:10 pm

Yes. 3.2 Ghz Quad-Core Core i5, turbo boost to 3.6 Ghz. :-) I'm glad to see they have HearthStone ported to Mac as well. :-)
 
Atradeimos
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Re: Buying a Mac tonight

Sun Aug 30, 2015 10:35 pm

Sounds like a lot of money, but hey if you earned it... Enjoy!

confusedpenguin wrote:
GeForce GT 755 1GB (Hopefully WoW will run ok with that.


You should be fine with WoW and Hearthstone.

Just for kicks, here's a table comparing the GT755 to the venerable 8800GTX, which sold for $600 9 years ago:

Metric GT 755M 8800GTX
Memory 2048 MB 768 MB
Memory bandwidth 86.4 GB/sec 86.4 GB/sec
Shader processing 750 GFLOPS 518 GLFOPS
Pixel fillrate 15.5 GP/sec 13.8 GP/sec
Texture fillrate 31.4 GT/sec 36.8 GT/sec
Power consumption 50W 155W
Transistors 1270 million 681 million


Weird, wonder what all those extra transistors are doing. They probably have some more codec type stuff in there, and I suppose the design is more optimized in a way that isn't reflected in the raw numbers.

Edit: Also I've seen the full lam 27" screens at work and they are gorgeous, even without the 5k resolution.
Last edited by Atradeimos on Sun Aug 30, 2015 10:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
BlackDove
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Re: Buying a Mac tonight

Sun Aug 30, 2015 10:40 pm

So youre buying based on a neighbor not saying much about it? Wow.

Both models are already obsolete if you need to do much other than browse the internet(good luck hardening a Macs browser).
 
Arbiter Odie
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Re: Buying a Mac tonight

Sun Aug 30, 2015 10:46 pm

BlackDove wrote:
So youre buying based on a neighbor not saying much about it? Wow.

Both models are already obsolete if you need to do much other than browse the internet(good luck hardening a Macs browser).


Firefox works on OSX. No-script works in firefox. Don't see the problem here :wink:
Intel E3 1246 (essentially a 4770k) - Asrock C226ws - 32GB ECC ram - Saphire RX480 (undervolted) - Vertex 4, 120GB - 2x Toshiba, 4TB - Hitachi, 4TB
 
BlackDove
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Re: Buying a Mac tonight

Sun Aug 30, 2015 10:48 pm

Arbiter Odie wrote:
BlackDove wrote:
So youre buying based on a neighbor not saying much about it? Wow.

Both models are already obsolete if you need to do much other than browse the internet(good luck hardening a Macs browser).


Firefox works on OSX. No-script works in firefox. Don't see the problem here :wink:


No script is not really application hardening and the recent problems confirmed what ive been saying for years: it offers no real protection against zero days.
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