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CaptainofInd
Mar 14, 2008, 10:32 AM
Our company is preparing a mac-upgrade and I want to make sure I have fast enough for each responsibility without overkill.

Main tasks include keeping the entire CS3 system open most of the time, going back and forth, running extensive batch files in photoshop, editing 100 page Indd files, and managing/correcting 300+meg photos.

For these tasks, a new G5 powermac would be beautiful, but is it necessary? Can we get away with a maxed-out iMac?

As aa secondary task, we have a production manager/art buyer who will be running lightroom as a file management system, checking photoshop, indesign and illustrator files, making minor edits and occasionally running batch files. Rarely will she need more than one program set open at a time.
Is a suped-up Mac mini good enough, or will she need more? How does a mac mini compare to an older 2.1 Ghz PowerPC G5 imac?

Thanks for all the help!



arkitect
Mar 14, 2008, 10:34 AM
Get a Mac Pro.

a new G5 powermac
No idea why you'd be looking at a G5 though… I presume you meant Mac Pro?

Techguy172
Mar 14, 2008, 10:37 AM
Yeah you will need ton's of ram probably 10GB so get the Mac Pro.

Apemanblues
Mar 14, 2008, 10:39 AM
To be honest, I think a PowerPC would be more than up to the task. Even dual processor G4's.

You can get some great refirbs if you shop around.

Techguy172
Mar 14, 2008, 11:06 AM
To be honest, I think a PowerPC would be more than up to the task. Even dual processor G4's.

You can get some great refirbs if you shop around.

Yes but that would be buying old technology there is already Intel exclusive software so you want a computer to last more than a year or two.

snickelfritz
Mar 14, 2008, 11:11 AM
24" Alu iMac with at least 2GB of RAM installed.

ChicoWeb
Mar 14, 2008, 11:21 AM
Mac Pro - 8 Core - As much Ram as they can afford. I have 8 in mine and run PS, AI, DW, just fine. But if you have all of them open..I'd get as much as possible.

Apemanblues
Mar 14, 2008, 12:20 PM
Yes but that would be buying old technology there is already Intel exclusive software so you want a computer to last more than a year or two.

After two years Macs don't expire and then become unusable. If Your Mac sufficiently runs the software you need to do a specific job, it can run until the day it's components burn out.

But I would agree that a Mac Pro is a better investment for the future if you intend on regularly upgrading your software.

Techguy172
Mar 14, 2008, 12:33 PM
After two years Macs don't expire and then become unusable. If Your Mac sufficiently runs the software you need to do a specific job, it can run until the day it's components burn out.

But I would agree that a Mac Pro is a better investment for the future if you intend on regularly upgrading your software.

I know they don't expire but even now I know the Mac Pro would run them a whole lot better and I'm guessing he's probably going to want to upgrade to new stuff in the future.

chaosbunny
Mar 14, 2008, 12:33 PM
Yeah you will need ton's of ram probably 10GB so get the Mac Pro.

lol, complete overkill for now.


24" Alu iMac with at least 2GB of RAM installed.

I second that. Maybe better get 4gb and you won't have a problem.

Techguy172
Mar 14, 2008, 12:36 PM
lol, complete overkill for now.




I second that. Maybe better get 4gb and you won't have a problem.

That's not overkill at all. Running all applications at once requires more than 4GB's of ram, Switching between them would be a nightmare and when your working on over 300MB files your going to want the Ram. iMac is not powerful enough.

chaosbunny
Mar 14, 2008, 12:49 PM
That's not overkill at all. Running all applications at once requires more than 4GB's of ram, Switching between them would be a nightmare and when your working on over 300MB files your going to want the Ram. iMac is not powerful enough.

Well, I recently worked on a 15x7 m megaboard for a car company. The psd file has 1,5 gb. I used a 2,3 ghz dual G5 with 3 gb ram at work and sometimes my 2,8 ghz iMac with 2 gb at home. The G5 runs CS2 Design Standard and I had everything opened + entourage & firefox. On my iMac I almost constantly have Bridge CS3, InDesign CS3, Illustrator CS3, Photoshop CS3, Safari, Mail & iTunes opened. Did I have problems? No. And 300 mb is nothing these days.

Of course a Mac Pro would be faster BUT to claim that such tasks "require more than 4gb ram" and "an iMac is not powerful enough" is plain wrong.

Cabbit
Mar 14, 2008, 01:47 PM
i would recommend the mac pro but not the over kill, get the basic downgraded quad, 2 GB ram and then you have computers that are as cheep as the 24 inch iMac but more expandable in the future and twice the cores to start of with. Then grow them by need it doesn't take much to order a couple hard drive, ram sticks or a new GPU in the future.

chaosbunny
Mar 14, 2008, 02:03 PM
i would recommend the mac pro but not the over kill, get the basic downgraded quad, 2 GB ram and then you have computers that are as cheep as the 24 inch iMac but more expandable in the future and twice the cores to start of with. Then grow them by need it doesn't take much to order a couple hard drive, ram sticks or a new GPU in the future.

Sounds like a good idea too. The best advise may be, as it is often, a compromise. :)

A.Fairhead
Mar 14, 2008, 02:18 PM
If you're looking at the crossover area between the iMac and the Mac Pro …

… things like 'do I have monitors available already', 'will I need to expand <insert feature here> in future' and 'what is the difference between the two that really affects me' would be questions that would spring to my mind.

If you're sitting on the fence, read over their specs and features and see what makes you lean forward or fall backward? :)

decksnap
Mar 14, 2008, 02:34 PM
That's not overkill at all. Running all applications at once requires more than 4GB's of ram, Switching between them would be a nightmare and when your working on over 300MB files your going to want the Ram. iMac is not powerful enough.

That is so wrong. Running all applications at once doesn't really require more than 2 Gb. Depends what you mean by 'all'. I keep about 10-15 apps open at a time on a 1 Gb machine.

The iMac is also powerful enough.

IgnatiusTheKing
Mar 14, 2008, 02:46 PM
i would recommend the mac pro but not the over kill, get the basic downgraded quad, 2 GB ram and then you have computers that are as cheep as the 24 inch iMac but more expandable in the future and twice the cores to start of with. Then grow them by need it doesn't take much to order a couple hard drive, ram sticks or a new GPU in the future.

I'm in a similar boat and that's what I did here at work ("on the way" Mac Pro below).

I have an iMac at home running all the CS3 programs on only 2GB of RAM so I know my Mac Pro will be able to handle it. My boss wanted to me to take a wait-and-see approach on upgrading the RAM, which is fine with me (esp, after a year of requesting a Mac Pro to replace my slow Pentium PC). I don't do much with video so I'm not concerned about having "only" 4 cores. I'm also pretty sure I'll be able to get him to approve at least an extra 2GB RAM after a month or two, if I notice it really dragging (which I don't expect at all).

That is so wrong. Running all applications at once doesn't really require more than 2 Gb. Depends what you mean by 'all'. I keep about 10-15 apps open at a time on a 1 Gb machine.

The iMac is also powerful enough.

I run at least Bridge, InDesign, Illustrator, Photoshop, Safari and Mail at the same time on my iMac and it doesn't have any problems keeping up.

fluidedge
Mar 14, 2008, 05:03 PM
I'd have your main machine(s) as new Mac Pros with lots of RAM.

Then for secondary machines, either a Good dual G5 or a 24" iMac (the White ones have better screens for colour work etc)

andy.barron
Mar 14, 2008, 05:16 PM
Been running the cs suite since its start (have dropped Illustrator cs3 to go back to cs2 for obvious reasons) & am using the 3 version on a G5 at work with 4gb ram & G5 at home 8gb ram.
The one at home is faster in general when day to day actions are performed, but when you are working with .psb files lets say, you cannot have a fast enough mac or enough ram ever.
I would say that there is no overkill with ram, look at the budget (& push it with your boss) for the tower & add as much ram as it will take. Lets face it guys, ram is sooo cheaper now than it used to be & worth every penny..

CanadaRAM
Mar 14, 2008, 05:21 PM
Did y'all miss the part about 100 Mb Indesign files and managing tons of photos?

Have you ever opened iPhoto with thousands of photos in the library, when there wasn't enough RAM to swallow the entire library's thumbnails? Dog slow.

Performance on applications that handle large datasets drops dramatically when you don't have plenty of RAM. It is not comparable to multitasking at all, because with multitasking you are using the programs sequentially, so it can swap out the unused ones fairly easily.

MacPro for the main machine with 8 Gb of RAM would be ideal, and iMac Intel with 4 Gb RAM for the secondary station. The little Mini harddrive with its slow performance will hold you back on disk intensive cataloguing.

A PowerPC G5 machine is out of the running for CS3 - CS3 really needs an Intel processor to perform to potential.

andy.barron
Mar 14, 2008, 05:34 PM
A PowerPC G5 machine is out of the running for CS3 - CS3 really needs an Intel processor to perform to potential.[/QUOTE]

rubbish.

fluidedge
Mar 14, 2008, 05:49 PM
i agree.

A G5 will run CS3 very well.

Techguy172
Mar 14, 2008, 05:53 PM
That is so wrong. Running all applications at once doesn't really require more than 2 Gb. Depends what you mean by 'all'. I keep about 10-15 apps open at a time on a 1 Gb machine.

The iMac is also powerful enough.

Yeah that is such a lie I had 1GB in my Macbook for the first few month's I owned the Machine and there was no way I could have 10-15 apps open I remember trying to open photoshop and use it with iTunes, Mail and Safari open and it could not be done without huge slow downs it became unworkable when working with large files, you need ram and when switching between applications especially CS3 you want it to be fast Especially If you want to move large files between many applications.

Now i'll admit 10GB's maybe a bit overkill but at least you won't have to worry about it for quite a long time. You need at least 6GB for what he wants to do 8 would be better.

For his second machine I would get an iMac for that even an old White one would work just load it up with ram and that should be fine.

fluidedge
Mar 14, 2008, 05:58 PM
you do need a good chunk of RAM to keep all CS3 apps open (and actively working) concurrently.

I don't see why 4GB wouldn't do. Is there a limit to how much photoshop can address while open?

andy.barron
Mar 14, 2008, 06:02 PM
[QUOTE=Techguy172;5159264]Yeah that is such a lie I had 1GB in my Macbook for the first few month's I owned the Machine and there was no way I could have 10-15 apps open I remember trying to open photoshop and use it with iTunes, Mail and Safari open and it could not be done without huge slow downs it became unworkable when working with large files, you need ram and when switching between applications especially CS3 you want it to be fast Especially If you want to move large files between many applications.


a 'macbook'. Funny that! lol

Look at the original post, this isn't a 'my world is fine come join me if you have the funds' post.
Look at budget v performance. Surely the best advice we can give is get the best processor first & THEN fill it with ram. RAM IS CHEAP!!!

Come on.:mad:

decksnap
Mar 14, 2008, 06:22 PM
Yeah that is such a lie I had 1GB in my Macbook for the first few month's I owned the Machine and there was no way I could have 10-15 apps open I remember trying to open photoshop and use it with iTunes, Mail and Safari open and it could not be done without huge slow downs it became unworkable when working with large files, you need ram and when switching between applications especially CS3 you want it to be fast Especially If you want to move large files between many applications.

I'm sorry about your macbook. Must suck. But I'm not lying. This (http://images.macrumors.com/im/contest200611/decksnap.html) video right here on Macrumors was done on my system with 1Gb of RAM. Granted it's not running some of my CS3 apps, but there's 12 apps running right there plus SnapzPro running on top of it to record it all.

ChrisA
Mar 14, 2008, 06:23 PM
Our company is preparing a mac-upgrade and I want to make sure I have fast enough for each responsibility without overkill.

How much do the users make per hour? Let's say the lifetime of this machine is four years and each user works on it half time. That's four thousand hours before the machine gets pushed off the desk by a replacement. Take the hourly rate times 4,000. That's what you pay the person pushing the mouse. When you think in those terms, saving $2K (that's $500 per year) by trying to "make do" with a Mac Mini hardly makes sense. Buy either the Mac Pro or a MBP.

fluidedge
Mar 14, 2008, 06:27 PM
mac mini is out of the question. You'll want a machine with a dedicated graphics card for sure.

Techguy172
Mar 14, 2008, 06:27 PM
I'm sorry about your macbook. Must suck. But I'm not lying. This (http://images.macrumors.com/im/contest200611/decksnap.html) video right here on Macrumors was done on my system with 1Gb of RAM. Granted it's not running some of my CS3 apps, but there's 12 apps running right there plus SnapzPro running on top of it to record it all.

It did suck, I have 4GB's now and it's fine but I see you have Tiger. I have Leopard which could be one of the reasons. What mac was that on if you don't mine me asking?

decksnap
Mar 14, 2008, 06:29 PM
It did suck, I have 4GB's now and it's fine but I see you have Tiger. I have Leopard which could be one of the reasons. What mac was that on if you don't mine me asking?

It's a G5 tower. :eek:

One of the other reasons may be that the Macbook shares ram with the integrated vid card, right?

Techguy172
Mar 14, 2008, 06:30 PM
It's a G5 tower. :eek:

One of the other reasons may be that the Macbook shares ram with the integrated vid card, right?

That's another reason but it's fine now so I don't care.

DesignerOnMac
Mar 14, 2008, 06:30 PM
That is so wrong. Running all applications at once doesn't really require more than 2 Gb. Depends what you mean by 'all'. I keep about 10-15 apps open at a time on a 1 Gb machine.

The iMac is also powerful enough.

RAM is so CHEAP right now that to max out the RAM on an alum iMac should be not issue at all. Better to have more RAm than less anyway.

I bought an Alum iMac 2.8 extreme and it runs all of the programs you mentioned all opened at the same time with easy. Upgraded from a G4 duelie mirrors desktop and this blows the doors of it.

mcavjame
Mar 14, 2008, 06:38 PM
Maybe it's just me, but let's not swing so quickly to the negative side when someone makes a comment. CanadaRam indicated that an Intel machine is needed to see CS3's potential. Sometimes we are just typing along and not really considering how our choice of words will be taken by someone else. What he probably meant was optimal. While I'm sure CS3 runs fine on G4 and G5 machines even Adobe recognizes the benefits of the Intel processor to their suite:

Photoshop CS3 features substantial speed gains for Intel Macs, according to Adobe’s Nack.I upgraded to a MacBook Pro and Photoshop just screams on that,” Nack said. “We are seeing an 40 percent increase in speed in addition to the 30 percent speed increase in what Rosetta was able to do with the 10.4.8 update.”

With that said, it does seem like the original post is asking for the most cost effective set up. System requirements indicate G4 as a minimum with 512 MB of RAM, far below what most people are recommending in this thread.

fluidedge
Mar 14, 2008, 06:54 PM
FB 800MHz RAM for the MP is not THAT cheap

IgnatiusTheKing
Mar 14, 2008, 07:11 PM
Photoshop CS2 can only use the first 2GB of RAM on a system, so anything over 4GB might be overkill.

Photoshop CS3 can use the first 8GB of RAM, so there really isn't anything that could be considered overkill.

mcavjame
Mar 14, 2008, 07:31 PM
Photoshop CS2 can only use the first 2GB of RAM on a system, so anything over 4GB might be overkill.

Photoshop CS3 can use the first 8GB of RAM, so there really isn't anything that could be considered overkill.

There is a quick little article here (http://prodig.org/2007/04/20/ram-can-photoshop-cs3-cope/) that indicates how to get PS to address more RAM and what the benefits are. His first paragraph indicates that you need a 64 bit OS and with ForceVMBuffering.plugin enabled.

digitalnicotine
Mar 14, 2008, 08:22 PM
I second CanadaRams advice. The OP's description of what he needs to do, sounds like they are working on something that needs optimal performance, not "it will work, but..." performance. Granted the machines others have mentioned will do the job. But this is a workplace environment, and there is a difference between optimal and overkill.

Ram and HD's are the cheapest upgrades for what they provide in return. You can start with what you think will be plenty, and see if your predictions were accurate over time. It's a simple fix, and doesn't result in buyers remorse. Getting less than what will make your workflow run smoothly, on the other hand, will result in wasted time, frustration, and a potentially edgy work atmosphere.

As for CS3 needing Intel chips, this is inaccurate as it's a Universal software set, which means it runs natively on both PPC and Intel Macs.

IgnatiusTheKing
Mar 14, 2008, 08:32 PM
There is a quick little article here (http://prodig.org/2007/04/20/ram-can-photoshop-cs3-cope/) that indicates how to get PS to address more RAM and what the benefits are. His first paragraph indicates that you need a 64 bit OS and with ForceVMBuffering.plugin enabled.

Here's (http://kb.adobe.com/selfservice/viewContent.do?externalId=kb401089) the article from Adobe's site. Gives a pretty good overview.