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Graphics or no graphics for iMac

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Hi all,

I have a question and I don't seems to know the answer. Do I need the graphics card for the iMac or no? I really don't do alot of video editing but need something to edit some videos. Seems simple enough but I can't seem to know which one is best.




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ALL of the Macs on the market today can edit video. video is CPU intensive for the most part and while a GPU can help it is not a requirement. iMovie requires the most basic of GPUs which is pretty much any of them. other parts can be a bigger factor. like RAM and storage.

the graphics card is built-in to the iMac. you cannot replace it or upgrade it. the idea of the iMac is that it will do just about everything you would want to do. even as an above average user. it will run the airquotes heavy lifting stuff like CAD, Photoshop, Illustrator, and other publishing tools will work just fine on any of the configurations of iMac. some "artists" will complain that the iMac is not powerful enough. but look at the benchmarks of the the newest iMac compared to the low end Mac Pro. it is $1000 cheaper and it's "that much" faster. go i7!


where you will hit a wall is with some of the 3D tools or super complex movie editing. especially those that take advantage of advanced GPU features. but if you NEED that kind of power you won't use a Mac. for example modern particle effects are almost always done in the GPU. the more memory you have available means loading bigger, more detailed textures. if you were going to use Smoke from Autodesk you are limited to running it on just 3 Macs. but if you are running that tool you would buy hardware specifically to run it.

if your workflow is entirely the Adobe Creative suite consider running it on Windows. there are huge performance benefits to be gained because of the relationship made possible by Microsoft supporting hardware vendors. dual GPUs is pretty much unheard of on a Mac but there are 29 solutions on Windows hardware. Adobe Premiere will chew through footage when paired with a pair of cards.

that said, the iMac is a great machine for what it is given the correct mission. be sure to purchase Apple Care with it because there are no YOU serviceable parts inside.

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