The Best (and Worst) Macs for Gaming

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It’s not news that Macs and MacBooks are considered not ideal for gaming. But Apple has really been picking it up over the years. Gamers can easily play all their favorites — Fortnite, Rocket League, and World of Warcraft — because of the speed and user-friendly abilities that Macs have. Pro-tip: Installing Windows via Boot Camp on your Mac allows you to switch from Mac to Windows whenever needed for games not compatible with Mac.

As for the specs required for playing online games, it all depends on what you want to play. Games you can play instantly online like poker or Solitaire typically don’t require graphics card requirements or much of your computer’s RAM, so the model of Mac you use doesn’t really matter. Regardless, here are the best and worst Macs for gaming:

The Best Mac: iMac 27-in

All of the new iMacs come with quad-core 7th generation Intel Core i5 processors. The only difference is the GHz. The highest you can get is 3.8GHz, but the noticeable difference between a 3.4 or 3.5GHz computer is very marginal. This 5k computer is being sold on the Apple website for $2,299. If you really wanted to shell out, the latest iMac Pro is the way to go, with a 3.2GHz 8-core Intel Xeon W processor, the most advanced processor in both the iMacs and MacBooks. But with a hefty $4,999 price tag, the difference you would see may not be worth it. They both have the same display quality, too. The iMac Pro, although the shiniest and sleekest model available, is best to avoid. Although the size of a monitor is not indicative of the power, gamers can all agree that a larger monitor is more comfortable to game on, and more fun.

The Best Mac: MacBook Pro 15-in

It can be difficult juggling both a desktop computer and a laptop, so in order to consolidate these devices into one, a MacBook Pro 15-in is a great heavy-duty laptop choice. The most expensive MacBook Pro has a price tag of $2,799 and comes with a 2.6GHz 6-core 8th generation Intel Core i7 processor. Although not as speedy as the iMacs, you have the option to Turbo Boost up to 4.3GHz, which will definitely come in handy when you’re gaming. The latest MacBook Pros come with Touch Bar and Touch ID, which is more of a cool tech addition than it is useful. Don’t get too sucked into the Touch Bar wave as you probably won’t be using it much for specific gaming methods. It is rumored to be very useful for video and audio editing and production, so if you’re looking to use your computer for other software programs, the Touch Bar could be a great addition to your life.

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Mac to Avoid: MacBook Air

The new MacBook Airs are definitely eye-catching with the addition of the Touch Bar feature and beautiful retina displays, but the 1.6GHz dual core 8th-generation Intel Core i5 processor may not be powerful enough for your gaming habits. It has the option of a 3.6GHz Turbo Boost, but even so, this light computer may have a tendency to unexpectedly shut down if you have multiple programs running at the same time. Experts are urging prospective buyers to wait it out if they’re keen on getting their hands on this sleek and light computer, as upgrades to the processor are expected to be coming later this year.

Pro-tip: If you’re really stuck with having an intermediate processor, getting an external hard-drive or SSD can help speed up your computer. You can probably download most of your games and run them on an external SSD or hard-drive, which will allow your internal hard-drive to rest.

Mac to Avoid: MacBook

Although these 12-in beauties are adorned with all the latest trappings and colors, this 12-in machine is way overpriced, retailing for $1,599 for the fastest processor in the collection. It comes with only half a TB of internal storage and a 1.3GHz dual-core 7th-generation Intel Core i5 processor, which is the smallest bang for your buck if comparing it to other models in the Apple product range. The Turbo Boost feature can get you up to 3.2GHz, but even so, you would definitely need to have an SSD or external hard-drive to keep your computer running at top speed.