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Old Nov 26, 2012, 06:15 PM   #26
thekev
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Originally Posted by Penn Jennings View Post
If I batch process converting 100+ RAW images from a 21 Mega pixel 5DMII and convert them to jpegs for client viewing, the SSD makes a huge difference. The Crucial 512 GB m4 performs at 500+ MB/second reads and 200+ MB/second writes, the stock Apple 750 GB drive is only 100+ plus there is almost no "seek" time with SSDs. I like SSDs but they aren't the silver bullets that people make them out to be.
That was my point, although sequential writes aren't that bad. For a lot of people the investment will be costly enough to consider prior to making a purchase. The misinformation on here annoys me at times. The questions can be too general. The answers are highly anecdotal. It's just that they work well enough when you aren't dealing with highly specific situations.


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Originally Posted by Penn Jennings View Post
A note for people considering a SSD: Some drives with 400+ MB/second write times use compression. If you have filevault2 turned on or deal with a lot of video your actually write performance might be half of what you think that it is. Encrypted data is not compressible.
I figured you were dealing with photo/video when you said "batch processing". You have cpu cycles involved whenever there is compression, which is why I mentioned it. If it's not encrypted or compressed, you're basically dumping data to disk.



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Originally Posted by Penn Jennings View Post
There is very little benefit to adding a extern SSD unless you are adding it via thunderbolt.

Even with a USB 3.0 interface, a fast SSD will bottleneck. An internal drive performs around 90 - 110 MB/second. You can get 100+ MB/second on an external USB 3.0 HDD. You just aren't going to sustain 500 MB/second via any other interface. If you can afford an external SSD via thunderbolt ($400 minimum) then you wouldn't even blink at 16 GB memory.
I'm assuming we're talking about notebooks here. With desktops 500MB/s was broken long ago. It's just that the options are expensive. On a notebook you could probably use mini-SAS through the express port, but that option won't work on a Mac. Getting an external drive with those speeds on a macbook pro is going to be somewhat expensive.
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Last edited by thekev; Nov 26, 2012 at 06:33 PM.
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Old Nov 26, 2012, 06:18 PM   #27
joe-h2o
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Originally Posted by smoking monkey View Post
I'm not sure what you mean by this comment.

Of course, if he buys Applecare he gets it. But the comment seems related to getting educational discount. Are you saying that the educational discount includes Apple care?!?!

If so, wow! I had no idea. If not, don't get my hopes up!!! Haha!

Can anybody clear this up?

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Can you let us know the situations when that happens? What programs and what you have open?

Thanks.
If you buy a Mac through the UK Higher Education program (ie, you buy it from the Apple Store online via your campus network [or VPN into your campus network] - the store will check and block you if you aren't coming from an ip address that matches the university) - then you get your 10-15% discount and you get what is effectively 3 years of AppleCare for free. It's not quite AppleCare since it's only the hardware warranty and not the phone support, but it is 90% of what AppleCare is.

You absolutely must buy through the online store using your campus network, though. You cannot get this deal using the education discount in a walk-in Apple Retail Store, or just by going to "education store" online. If you get past the bit where it asks you what uni you are from and then checks your ip address, that's the one you want.

http://store.apple.com/uk/browse/home/education_routing

The top of the three options in that list is the one you want. (edit, I think also the second one in the list). It also says you can phone in to order, but you'd have to double check with them whether the special 3 year warranty applies in that case.
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Old Nov 26, 2012, 06:28 PM   #28
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Originally Posted by joe-h2o View Post
If you buy a Mac through the UK Higher Education program (ie, you buy it from the Apple Store online via your campus network [or VPN into your campus network] - the store will check and block you if you aren't coming from an ip address that matches the university) - then you get your 10-15% discount and you get what is effectively 3 years of AppleCare for free. It's not quite AppleCare since it's only the hardware warranty and not the phone support, but it is 90% of what AppleCare is.

You absolutely must buy through the online store using your campus network, though. You cannot get this deal using the education discount in a walk-in Apple Retail Store, or just by going to "education store" online. If you get past the bit where it asks you what uni you are from and then checks your ip address, that's the one you want.

http://store.apple.com/uk/browse/home/education_routing

The top of the three options in that list is the one you want. (edit, I think also the second one in the list). It also says you can phone in to order, but you'd have to double check with them whether the special 3 year warranty applies in that case.
Thanks.
I'm guessing it's specific only to certain countries. I'm actually a teacher and not a student, so I can't see that being the case for my situation. That being said, there's no harm in calling Apple to confirm it!
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Old Nov 26, 2012, 07:05 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by Penn Jennings View Post
There is very little benefit to adding a extern SSD unless you are adding it via thunderbolt.

Even with a USB 3.0 interface, a fast SSD will bottleneck. An internal drive performs around 90 - 110 MB/second. You can get 100+ MB/second on an external USB 3.0 HDD. You just aren't going to sustain 500 MB/second via any other interface. If you can afford an external SSD via thunderbolt ($400 minimum) then you wouldn't even blink at 16 GB memory.
Which is why I said "down the road".
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Old Nov 26, 2012, 07:15 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by Shivetya View Post
Comes down to this, if the price difference is but a small percentage of the price of the unit then buy it upgraded. For those who quibble over differences of ten percent or such I always wonder why they are buying in the first place.
This.

Especially when RAM is not upgradable.

Yes, you could save money today by skimping on RAM. However, see below...




----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by mchoffa View Post
If you have the choice of upgrading your processor speed slightly from 2.7 to 2.9, or upgrading your ram from 8 to 16, go with the ram. Unfortunately for you, you'll have to pay apple's prices for the ram on the 21.5"

I got 32GB of ram for $174 after tax from crucial.com

Also this.

Skimp elsewhere, not on RAM. Not enough RAM is often the difference between a machine you can still use, and one that is unusable (or very slow and aggravating) and needs to be replaced.

For what most people do, a Core 2 CPU is more than ample, assuming they've got enough RAM in it.

8gb is fine today. Software requirements will grow. If you plan on selling the machine after 12 months 8 will probably be fine. If you're planning to keep it 3 years (or more), I'd certainly make sure you get 16gb.


And for those who think requirements won't go up - 10 years ago 512 megabytes of ram was plenty to do basically all the things people do today (sure, the games looked crappier and the tools were more primitive, but the tasks got done). 10 years before that, 4 megabytes was enough for most people.

If the resources are cheap and available, developers will consume them.

Betting on RAM consumption going up by 2x every 2-3 years has proven to be a fairly safe bet for the past 20 years plus.

For most of what people do - CPUs sit idle most of the time. Faster CPU will make a marginal difference (overall, sure some specifics cpu intensive tasks may be faster), unless you're doing some niche task that burns a lot of CPU.
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Last edited by throAU; Nov 26, 2012 at 07:31 PM.
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Old Nov 26, 2012, 08:09 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by timcullis View Post
Go from 4 to 16 will also give you a major boost.

As will going from 4 to 8...
but I plan on doing this, and assigning 8 or 16GB to it:

http://nathancahill.github.com/photo...-scratch-disk/
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Old Nov 26, 2012, 09:28 PM   #32
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Originally Posted by Icaras View Post
Ever heard of sample libraries? I run Logic Pro and there is no way 8GB will suffice with all my Quantum Leap orchestral libraries and several instances of Kontakt at once. Believe me, I've tried once on a Macbook Pro and everything just slows down to a crawl and is very unplayable.

Simply put, if the OP is thinking of using high quality recorded sample libraries, which can go as high as 24bit quality, I would advise to get no less than 16GB. And for many professional hollywood composers, 16GB is still nothing. Even pop music or anything thats going to have a lot of audio recording is just going to eat away at the RAM. If the OP is really serious about it, I would suggest considering stepping up to the 27" iMac as you can upgrade it to 32GB.
Any why are you running several instances of kontakt at once? And why are you using Kontakt on OSX? I've always pumped dozens of instruments at once on my PC with 4GB of ram and I always found CPU as the limiting factor.

And audio RECORDING uses miniscule amounts of ram unless you are trying to do something insane like mic an orchestra.

I could see how loading a bunch of high quality sample libraries at once could slam your RAM, but that's a really specialized task, and not one i'd use an iMac for.
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Old Nov 26, 2012, 09:42 PM   #33
Penn Jennings
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Originally Posted by uptownnyc View Post
Which is why I said "down the road".
Seriously though, buying a SSD now for use "down the road" makes no sense for 2 reasons.

One, the OP is debating 8 GB vs 16 GB. Why? because he doesn't have money to blow unless it has value. Adding a SSD external has no value over HDD. You can add a 3 TB external HDD for $150. A thunderbolt cable is $50 and a 2.5 GoFlex adapter is $100. $150 doesn't even get you a drive... now add another $150 min for 128 MB drive (Although I personally wouldn't buy such a small drive). That makes no sense when the OP is debating the $100 difference between 8 GB and 16 GB.

Two, SSD technology is moving fairly quickly, if you don't need it now you can probably get someone thing better AND cheaper in a months so if you can't fully use it now buying now makes no sense.


It truly is not my intent to slam your idea or sound hostile but really, an external SSD really makes no sense in the context that the OP is in.

EDIT:
I don't really know what the Apple cost of 16 GB will be. I just know the street price.

Last edited by Penn Jennings; Nov 26, 2012 at 09:49 PM.
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Old Nov 26, 2012, 09:43 PM   #34
Icaras
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Originally Posted by HurtinMinorKey View Post
Any why are you running several instances of kontakt at once? And why are you using Kontakt on OSX? I've always pumped dozens of instruments at once on my PC with 4GB of ram and I always found CPU as the limiting factor.

And audio RECORDING uses miniscule amounts of ram unless you are trying to do something insane like mic an orchestra.

I could see how loading a bunch of high quality sample libraries at once could slam your RAM, but that's a really specialized task, and not one i'd use an iMac for.
Because sometimes I may need more than 16 midi channels to run a full orchestra? And I'll always need more channels if I intend to use something other than orchestra sections of course.

And I use Kontakt on OSX because my DAW is Logic Pro, as I had mentioned.

I agree that in this scenario where you are running an orchestra, that it can definitely take a hit on the RAM.
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Old Nov 27, 2012, 01:59 AM   #35
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Thanks.
I'm guessing it's specific only to certain countries. I'm actually a teacher and not a student, so I can't see that being the case for my situation. That being said, there's no harm in calling Apple to confirm it!
It's UK only I think, never heard of another country getting the free warranty. In the UK it applies to academic staff at universities as well.
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Old Nov 27, 2012, 11:29 AM   #36
seble
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Originally Posted by Icaras View Post
Because sometimes I may need more than 16 midi channels to run a full orchestra? And I'll always need more channels if I intend to use something other than orchestra sections of course.

And I use Kontakt on OSX because my DAW is Logic Pro, as I had mentioned.

I agree that in this scenario where you are running an orchestra, that it can definitely take a hit on the RAM.
I see where you are coming from, I currently use logic to score for other things, but do use sibelius for orchestras, but I can see that changing inthe future, so may go for the 16 gigs!

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Quote:
Originally Posted by iStudentUK View Post
It's UK only I think, never heard of another country getting the free warranty. In the UK it applies to academic staff at universities as well.
Thanks for that info, didn't even know you could get that!
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Old Nov 27, 2012, 11:48 AM   #37
toddbe
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What ram did you order? How did you know the type for the yet to be released 27"?
Thanks!

Quote:
Originally Posted by mchoffa View Post
If you have the choice of upgrading your processor speed slightly from 2.7 to 2.9, or upgrading your ram from 8 to 16, go with the ram. Unfortunately for you, you'll have to pay apple's prices for the ram on the 21.5"

I got 32GB of ram for $174 after tax from crucial.com
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Old Nov 27, 2012, 12:34 PM   #38
joe-h2o
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Originally Posted by smoking monkey View Post
Thanks.
I'm guessing it's specific only to certain countries. I'm actually a teacher and not a student, so I can't see that being the case for my situation. That being said, there's no harm in calling Apple to confirm it!
As a teacher you absolutely qualify for the HE discount, assuming your employer is participating, but it is country-specific also.

----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by Penn Jennings View Post
Seriously though, buying a SSD now for use "down the road" makes no sense for 2 reasons.

One, the OP is debating 8 GB vs 16 GB. Why? because he doesn't have money to blow unless it has value. Adding a SSD external has no value over HDD. You can add a 3 TB external HDD for $150. A thunderbolt cable is $50 and a 2.5 GoFlex adapter is $100. $150 doesn't even get you a drive... now add another $150 min for 128 MB drive (Although I personally wouldn't buy such a small drive). That makes no sense when the OP is debating the $100 difference between 8 GB and 16 GB.

Two, SSD technology is moving fairly quickly, if you don't need it now you can probably get someone thing better AND cheaper in a months so if you can't fully use it now buying now makes no sense.


It truly is not my intent to slam your idea or sound hostile but really, an external SSD really makes no sense in the context that the OP is in.

EDIT:
I don't really know what the Apple cost of 16 GB will be. I just know the street price.
Why bother with a GoFlex adapter? LaCie is selling single-drive SSDs ready to go. USB3/Thunderbolt dual interface, with thunderbolt cable included in the box. $200 for the 120GB. More for the 256.

Obviously more than an internal drive, but it's not as crazy as needing a drive, adapter and cable all separately any more.
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Old Nov 27, 2012, 12:45 PM   #39
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What ram did you order? How did you know the type for the yet to be released 27"?
Thanks!
http://www.crucial.com/store/mpartsp...0E583EA5CA7304

It says guaranteed compatible, and spec wise is what is listed on Apple's site.

and it's on sale now! $16 less (for two of them) than what I just paid 2 weeks ago. Oh well, I just wanted to be ready in case they came early
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Old Nov 27, 2012, 01:36 PM   #40
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I see where you are coming from, I currently use logic to score for other things, but do use sibelius for orchestras, but I can see that changing inthe future, so may go for the 16 gigs![COLOR="#808080"]
Yea, i also recommending checking out other music production centric forums like kvraudio.com, gearslutz.com, soundonline.com, or any forums from a company who does professional sounding sample libraries to get better perspectives from those already in the business. For Logic Pro, definitely check out logicprohelp.com. Great Logic community over there.

Otherwise, RAM is of course not going to be as crucial if you just plan on strictly notating. You'll just have to listen to Logic's built-in samples, which are ok for starters, but simply won't have the depth, control, and sheer sound quality of a professional sample library.
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Old Nov 27, 2012, 01:46 PM   #41
Penn Jennings
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As a teacher you absolutely qualify for the HE discount, assuming your employer is participating, but it is country-specific also.

----------



Why bother with a GoFlex adapter? LaCie is selling single-drive SSDs ready to go. USB3/Thunderbolt dual interface, with thunderbolt cable included in the box. $200 for the 120GB. More for the 256.

Obviously more than an internal drive, but it's not as crazy as needing a drive, adapter and cable all separately any more.

Hmm, good point. I didn't realize that the cable was included. :-) Thanks!

I was thinking GoFlex because it gives you the option of installing it internally at a later date. It really depends on your application and preferences I guess. The LaCie would be a much cheaper and elegant solution. Although 120 GB isn't very much storage, if you don't need much though it should work out great.

I do wonder why the transfer rate is listed as "up to 380 MB/second" though, that is not good for a SSD.
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Old Nov 27, 2012, 05:14 PM   #42
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I have 8 GB in my 2011MBP. I use Photoshop with Nik Software and portrait professional. When I open multiple images I do run into memory issues with other apps open. I'm going to jump to 16 GB soon. 8 GB is usable and workable but not ideal.
Old habits die hard I suppose. Coming from the early days of DOS I still only ever open one app at at time - open app close app open next one etc.
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Old Nov 28, 2012, 01:59 AM   #43
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As a teacher you absolutely qualify for the HE discount, assuming your employer is participating, but it is country-specific also.
Oh yeah. I always get the Educ Discount. It makes the prices far more palatable!

The new top of the line 27 is actually less than I expected with Educ Discount here in Japan.

I'm lovin' it!
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