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Author Topic: New Mac Pro or iMac  (Read 7297 times)
dseelig
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« on: January 11, 2014, 10:26:55 PM »
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I have an old one with 4 hd going. I am using up to 36 megapixel cameras. Just wondering what people think. I am use to my 30 inch monitor. Go for the new model which is pricey for me. I would buy the base model and go to 512 internal memory. Or get the most souped up iMac. I use aperture mostly and photo mechanic some photoshop. Thanks David
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Schewe
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« Reply #1 on: January 12, 2014, 12:34:17 AM »
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Well, it all depends...(doesn't it always?)

The top end iMac is a really well speced machine equal to or perhaps better than the low end new MacPro 2013. But...will 32GBs be enough (if you are working with 36MP cameras)? The new MacPro can go to 64GBs (and don't dismiss this as available ram is a major Photoshop performance factor).

The internal SSD is gonna beet the pants of the iMac. External connections via ThunderBolt 2 (TB2) will be about the same. But the vid card (GPU) is much stronger in the McPro 2013.

Yes, you can pack the top end iMac to be a real powerful Photoshop/Lightroom machine...but the MacPro 2013 can beat the iMac if you go with the 6 or 8 core machine (the 12 core isn't really a Photoshop.Lightroom machine).

So, can you get a good digital photography machine with the top end iMac? Absolutely! Can you set up the new MacPro 2013 to be the best in breed? Yep...it all depends on what you are willing to spend to get what you think you need.
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Steve Weldon
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« Reply #2 on: January 12, 2014, 01:31:04 AM »
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Well, it all depends...(doesn't it always?)

The top end iMac is a really well speced machine equal to or perhaps better than the low end new MacPro 2013. But...will 32GBs be enough (if you are working with 36MP cameras)? The new MacPro can go to 64GBs (and don't dismiss this as available ram is a major Photoshop performance factor).

The internal SSD is gonna beet the pants of the iMac. External connections via ThunderBolt 2 (TB2) will be about the same. But the vid card (GPU) is much stronger in the McPro 2013.

Yes, you can pack the top end iMac to be a real powerful Photoshop/Lightroom machine...but the MacPro 2013 can beat the iMac if you go with the 6 or 8 core machine (the 12 core isn't really a Photoshop.Lightroom machine).

So, can you get a good digital photography machine with the top end iMac? Absolutely! Can you set up the new MacPro 2013 to be the best in breed? Yep...it all depends on what you are willing to spend to get what you think you need.

1.  It's hard to imagine it wouldn't be.  With the way PS uses scratch disks it all comes down to how fast you perform the functions you use.  4gb will "work", 32gb is downright luxurious in most cases, 64gb.. you'd have to be working a ton of complex images a day to get much value from that.

2.  Having PCIe SSD's in use and SATA3 SSD's on the same machine, on different machines, etc.. the difference is actually hard to feel.  We'll have people who have never had a SSD, or only had cheaper slow ones, who will be impressed with the PCIe's performance.  But anyone with a fast SSD, overall, will give it a "shrug.."

3.  Curious what you mean by this? Is 12 cores just overkill and more appropriate for video applications, or is LR somehow limited on the cores?  We know LR is CPU intensive so I'm curious.

4.   Agreed, either, properly spec'd, will make a very good machine for still imagery.    I think the current trend is people are buying a lot more hardware than they will really use..  If someone isn't working extensively with video, or isn't time crunched to process a high number of images a day, and otherwise is happy to work at a relaxed pace.. then they should error on the side of a good solid quad core machine with up to 32gb and not everyone needs that much.  Many of us were/are recently using i7-920/930/950 machines with  8-12gb of RAM to process high MP images with relative ease.. I'd could process 400+ images a day  with that machine without much effort.  Few were complex, but still.  With RAM being  so cheap these day.. 32gb is a luxury most would be well advised to go to..
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dseelig
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« Reply #3 on: January 12, 2014, 01:54:35 AM »
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I sometimes shoot a few thousand images at a time to process or edit out of with that piece of info does that make a difference?
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Steve Weldon
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« Reply #4 on: January 12, 2014, 02:12:03 AM »
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I sometimes shoot a few thousand images at a time to process or edit out of with that piece of info does that make a difference?


Well sure.  This isn' t a "can do" or "can't do" situation between two computers, both can process images very well.  It's more of a matter of do you need the speed to satisfy your requirements.   We all should thousands of images a times, but are you under the gun to process all of them in a certain time frame?  Or is it more a matter of you can get to them when you get to them?

We're talking saving a few millliseconds here, a few there, sometimes (like when using the blur and some other tools) the difference could be whole seconds, a few of them.   How badly do you need these increments of speed?

Keep in mind with the Pro.. this much computing power hasn't been available before (at least not easily).. and pros processing for a living have been getting along just fine with the power available in quad core machines.  I build machines for clients.  I also might need to process 400 images a day so that's my bar.  I could have built the most powerful computer available like some of my clients demand, but having used the machines in question I know the Haswell Quadcore with 32gb of RAM would be luxurious for my needs. 

It's like having the new Corvette C7 Stingray in my driveway.  Fast as hell.  467hp and 187mph is faster than I'll go and I regularly compete in SCCA events..    So, even if my bank account would allow.. I don't need that Bugatti Veyron Super Sport with 1200hp that can go well over 250mph.. I"d never go that fast.   No need.   And I think this is a fair analogy..

How fast you need to go, to process.. only you know that.  But the information you're lacking is the experience of processing your workload on each level of machine.  What machine are you coming from and how much RAM?    And do you know a buddy who would give you some computer time so you could have a practical baseline?
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dseelig
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« Reply #5 on: January 12, 2014, 02:44:16 AM »
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I have a 2.93 quad mac pro 2009 16 gb ram Being in Idaho now much to see where I live. I wish when editing I could see the images after in photo mechanic and aperture as it seems to take seconds for the images to render properly.
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Alan Goldhammer
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« Reply #6 on: January 12, 2014, 09:57:15 AM »
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It's like having the new Corvette C7 Stingray in my driveway.  Fast as hell.  467hp and 187mph is faster than I'll go and I regularly compete in SCCA events..    So, even if my bank account would allow.. I don't need that Bugatti Veyron Super Sport with 1200hp that can go well over 250mph.. I"d never go that fast.   No need.   And I think this is a fair analogy..
Well you could be the star in 'Fast and Furious, Part 12: The Photo Edition'  Cheesy
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kers
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« Reply #7 on: January 12, 2014, 01:14:48 PM »
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I would like the fastest iMac but without the screen.
32gigabyte ram is enough
4 cores and 8 logical processors is usually all Photoshop uses.
and the imac also has PCI-flash and thunderbolt.
I call it the trashcan mini.

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Pieter Kers
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Schewe
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« Reply #8 on: January 12, 2014, 02:33:19 PM »
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3.  Curious what you mean by this? Is 12 cores just overkill and more appropriate for video applications, or is LR somehow limited on the cores?  We know LR is CPU intensive so I'm curious.

Unless you are doing something that can be split into many multiple threads, you really start to loose efficiency of flooding the 12 cores. Also note that for 12 core, the actual CPU speed drops quite a bit. The one benefit the new MacPros have is that the ram is really, really fast and that helps keep multi-cores working. But, the 12 core won't really be much faster than the 6 or 8 core for most Photoshop/Lightroom functions.

Compare that to video apps that spread the threads across more cores much more efficiently...so the 12 core MacPro is really more of an A/V machine than a Photoshop machine. Same deal with the dual vid cards...really handy if you are running multi-high rez displays and if the apps you run really leverage GPU.
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JimGoshorn
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« Reply #9 on: January 12, 2014, 02:55:51 PM »
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So between 6 and 8 cores, which gives you the better performance for PS and LR? I don't think ID or Ai will care. One also has to wonder how long it will be before Adobe starts making use of the dual GPU's.

Jim
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Steve Weldon
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« Reply #10 on: January 12, 2014, 02:56:51 PM »
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I have a 2.93 quad mac pro 2009 16 gb ram Being in Idaho now much to see where I live. I wish when editing I could see the images after in photo mechanic and aperture as it seems to take seconds for the images to render properly.
I dare say you would be disappointed with the newest and best Imac.  For fun, run the geekbench overall score.  A new Mac mini running the same quad core chip and 16gb of RAM and a super fast SSD scored a 14,445 here in this review I wrote.  I suspect a dual quad core of that vintage will do better.
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Steve Weldon
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« Reply #11 on: January 12, 2014, 02:58:34 PM »
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Well you could be the star in 'Fast and Furious, Part 12: The Photo Edition'  Cheesy

Only if the movie morphs to a bunch of 50 year olds..  Roll Eyes   I think they've done that on Street Outlaws..
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Steve Weldon
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« Reply #12 on: January 12, 2014, 03:00:03 PM »
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Unless you are doing something that can be split into many multiple threads, you really start to loose efficiency of flooding the 12 cores. Also note that for 12 core, the actual CPU speed drops quite a bit. The one benefit the new MacPros have is that the ram is really, really fast and that helps keep multi-cores working. But, the 12 core won't really be much faster than the 6 or 8 core for most Photoshop/Lightroom functions.

Compare that to video apps that spread the threads across more cores much more efficiently...so the 12 core MacPro is really more of an A/V machine than a Photoshop machine. Same deal with the dual vid cards...really handy if you are running multi-high rez displays and if the apps you run really leverage GPU.

Thank you.  I knew what software worked best on each, but couldn't articulate as well as you've done. Now I understand.
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Schewe
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« Reply #13 on: January 12, 2014, 03:05:32 PM »
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So between 6 and 8 cores, which gives you the better performance for PS and LR? I don't think ID or Ai will care. One also has to wonder how long it will be before Adobe starts making use of the dual GPU's.

Actually, apps like ID & IL that don't do much multi-core threading will be faster with less cores and faster CPU speed. I would say the 6 core would be a sweet spot for Lightroom that doesn't do a lot of multi-core flooding and the 8 core machine for Photoshop which does more multi-core options.
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JimGoshorn
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« Reply #14 on: January 12, 2014, 03:14:30 PM »
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Thanks Jeff! Wasn't sure since there haven't been any reports out on the new Mac Pro and how it works with LR and PS.

Jim
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Rajan Parrikar
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« Reply #15 on: January 12, 2014, 03:33:50 PM »
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There are some surprising results being reported with Photoshop CC.  See -

http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=200558&page=46

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Alan Goldhammer
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« Reply #16 on: January 13, 2014, 08:35:24 AM »
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Unless you are doing something that can be split into many multiple threads, you really start to loose efficiency of flooding the 12 cores. Also note that for 12 core, the actual CPU speed drops quite a bit. The one benefit the new MacPros have is that the ram is really, really fast and that helps keep multi-cores working. But, the 12 core won't really be much faster than the 6 or 8 core for most Photoshop/Lightroom functions.

Compare that to video apps that spread the threads across more cores much more efficiently...so the 12 core MacPro is really more of an A/V machine than a Photoshop machine. Same deal with the dual vid cards...really handy if you are running multi-high rez displays and if the apps you run really leverage GPU.
Very useful as Steve has already noted.  For those of us who still build our own workstations and mainly use LR with an occasional trip to PS, a good speedy i7 CPU with enough RAM and a decent video card is all that is needed.  As long as we are not doing video or 3D rendering anything above this is really not needed.
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Schewe
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« Reply #17 on: January 13, 2014, 12:27:54 PM »
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For those of us who still build our own workstations and mainly use LR with an occasional trip to PS, a good speedy i7 CPU with enough RAM and a decent video card is all that is needed.

Don't forget the 3rd part of the equation...fast drives!

Lightroom does a lot of small packet data exchanges to/from/back to the catalog. That pushes the read/write needs of the hard drive even more in some cases than sustained reads/writes. That's why SSD and raid arrays are really good for Lightroom. I keep my catalog on a small super fast stripped SAS drives and my main image storage in a big external (and slower) raid. But that was then...with my new MacPro, I'll use the internal SSD for boot and put in a pair (at least, maybe 4) SSDs for LR catalogs (and Photoshop scratch). Don't exactly know yet what I'll end up with. I'll let you know when I do...
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dseelig
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« Reply #18 on: January 13, 2014, 01:12:58 PM »
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AS I mentioned I use aperture any aperture users out there with real knowledge of the new machines compared to iMacs. I find lightroom a clunky mess and really hate it also after what Adobe has done after being a loyal supporter for over 18 years trying to stare clear of even photoshop now.
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Craig Lamson
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« Reply #19 on: January 13, 2014, 01:52:43 PM »
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There are some surprising results being reported with Photoshop CC.  See -

http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=200558&page=46



I'm very very skeptical of the reported 1.8 second time...
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