1. CatsandCoffee's Avatar

    I'm looking to buy an iMac 27" 5k 2017 and I'm torn between two options:

    1. i5 3.4 GHz 4GB video memory, 512GB SSD - 3000$
    2. i5 3.8GHz 8GB video memory, 2TB fusion (128GB SSD) - 2600$ (it is currently on sale)

    I hear everyone saying that going full SSD is much better than a fusion drive, but is the difference that big that it can justify getting an i5 3.4GHz 512GB SSD over an i5 3.8 GHz 2TB fusion (128GB SSD) AND paying 400$ more?
    Also, if I get the 2TB fusion, I might get an external SSD as I hear they are faster than internal HDDs (that is in the case I find the iMac to be slow... which I kind of doubt anyway?)

    I'm an illustrator working mainly for print (so larger files than agerage I suppose) in Photoshop, InDesign, Illustrator and planning to use iMovie and FCP in the near future. I won't be editing 4k footage anytime soon. I'm also upgrading from a very slow and outdated Windows PC that I'm currently using.

    I would love to hear your advice! Thanks!
    06-23-2018 06:46 AM
  2. Just_Me_D's Avatar
    Not in my opinion. Still, how much of an issue is it to you to retrieve data seconds faster? That’s basically what it boils down to. Just because something is technically faster doesn’t mean we need it. With that in mind, which is more important - 128 Gigabytes of storage or 512?
    06-23-2018 07:39 AM
  3. dcoke22's Avatar
    I have a machine very similar to your option 2. Mine is a 2017 iMac 5k with the 8GB video memory, the 3.8 Ghz i5, and the 3TB fusion drive. Personally, I like the simplicity of a larger internal drive so I don't have to worry about having a bunch of external drives connected to my machine. I find the fusion drive to be a good compromise of speed and size.

    In an ideal world, I'd only have SSDs, but that's fairly expensive for all the space I'm using (currently about 1.5TB). Having only a SSD will be faster than the fusion drive but a fusion drive with a 128GB SSD + 2TB HD, will seem a lot faster than your existing Windows PC or a HD-only Mac.

    You know your workflow better than anyone. How hard will it be to live with 500GB of storage for the 4+ years you'll be using this iMac? I would guess option 2 would work better for you.

    By the way, your option 2 is available in the Apple Refurb store for $1950. I've owned a few refurb Macs and have had good luck. You could use the savings to buy Apple Care to get 3 years of warranty and still save money (AppleCare+ is $170 I think).


    The available stock in the refurb store changes all the time, so if you're looking for a specific config, check every day until you find it.
    06-25-2018 09:20 AM

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