Doddelme by Heath McKnight
If you’re like me, you buy the best Mac or PC for your work, but within your budget. I needed to move up to an iMac from my Mac mini for Final Cut Pro X editing, but didn’t want to spend too much money on a new, late-2012 model iMac. So I bought a 21.5-inch Apple-refurbished mid-2011 iMac, base model with 8GB of RAM. And I upgraded it to 16GB of RAM from Other World Computing (OWC), plus an OWC Mercury Elite Pro hard drive and a NewerTech Guardian MAXimus mini RAID drive for good measure.
I really liked my base model Mac mini from mid-2011, but with the integrated Intel HD 3000 graphics, slower dual-core processor, it wasn’t getting the FCP X job done for me. I do a little bit of editing here and there, but between FCP X, FCP 7 and DVD Studio Pro, the render and export times were killer, despite my 8GB of RAM.
So I saved myself about $300 to $400 buying an Apple-refurbished iMac, compared to a new the late-2012 iMac, which is powerful and perhaps the most beautiful iMac yet, to quote the late great Steve Jobs, but that’s money I saved that I can use for buying affordable RAM from OWC and additional hard drives. Plus, this iMac has a built-in DVD burner, which the new ones don’t have, so I saved $60 or so buying an external Apple Superdrive.
The new iMacs, like I said, are breathtaking, but darn hard to upgrade the RAM — you need to have one built-to-order with 16GB or more RAM in it, which adds more money to it. The good news is, the mid-2011 was very easy to upgrade the RAM — I went with 16GB, but you can put in up to 32GB — and OWC has plenty of installation videos available, which makes it easy to install everything from RAM to a new hard drive. read more...