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New iMacs vs. Mac Pro - HELP!


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Hey there,

 

I currently use a PowerMac G5 dual 2.3 Ghz, 8 GB of RAM and 2x500 GB HDDs for composing music (mostly my own stuff but also write music for movies and stuff like that) using Logic with EW/QL libraries (PLAY of course).

 

My question is this: I am going to upgrade my system (finally!) and was going to get a new Mac Pro, either quad or octo-core and stock it up with 16 GB RAM and two 1TB drives and grab the 24" LED display...

 

But then the new iMacs came out!

 

I'm torn because I'm not sure whether processor really matters too much or not. Do I just grab the Dual Core 3.33 Ghz or splurge for the Core i7 Quad Core 2.8 Ghz? I'm going to max it out with 16 GB RAM and 2TB HDD anyway, but my question I guess is will the upgrade in the processor actually benefit me enough to warrant going up to that model?

 

Any help would be much appreciated!

 

Uvee

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You cannot put the iMac in the same league as the Mac Pro.

The iMac is not expandable at all. One Firewire port, no second internal HD, no PCI cards.

If you buy the Mac Pro don't go up to 16 gigs just for Logic. It's a waste of money.

Logic as an app cannot access more than 3 gigs of Ram anyway and OSX and Logic are not 64-bit apps so more than 8 gigs of Ram is pointless.

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As an iMac owner myself, I would suggest that you go for the pro if you can afford it. They are expandable and offer more performance overall.

 

If you're cash-conscious, the iMacs offer a more-than-decent entry into the world of Logic. They are powerful enough to comfortably cope with most bedroom users' needs (and more). I haven't had any problems with mine at all.

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Thanks for the replies.

 

I would still go with 16 GB of RAM because I use the EW/QL Play engine which actually does utilize as much ram as you have (if you need it) because it outsources the RAM allocation outside of Logic.

 

I know Logic can only allocate about 3 gigs of RAM and that's one of the main reasons I went and upgrade my sample libraries to the PLAY engine. With a 64 bit Mac, you can use all the RAM you have if you have an ambitious enough project.

 

My concern isn't really with expandability either. I do more software based audio work (composing in Logic using mainly samples, VSTs and such) and only use minimal external recordings and for that I use my FireWire 410. I don't really have much use for expanding it, other than HD space eventually.

 

My main concern is processor. For audio, is the difference between a dual core 3.33 Ghz processor and a Core i7 Quad Core processor at 2.8 Ghz going to do much for me? Mostly from what I've read RAM is the biggest concern... but I want to be sure before I lay down the cash, obviously.

 

Thanks for any other insight you can offer!

 

Uvee

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This is the first time ever in ten years that I myself am seriously considering an iMac (crammed with all the possible upgrades).

99% of my work is ITB, all native. Over the years as CPU power gets faster and cheaper I feel we've come to a day where the towers aren't as totally necessary as they were only a few short years ago.

 

I've been happy with my PMac, especially considering that it's been running solid for 5.5 years (some time of that was spent in a barn in the woods in the middle of nowhere in the dead of winter...). But I'm not ashamed to admit that a new iMac has plenty of power all the expandibilty I'll need.

 

Besides, stepping up from a dual G5 to Nehalem i7 processor is going to require a change of pants!

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