Any designers using Dual 867?

Discussion in 'Mac Help/Tips' started by lem0nayde, Mar 13, 2003.

  1. lem0nayde macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2002
    Location:
    NYC
    #1
    Hey,
    I'm a graphic designer, way behind the mac times - with a Mac clone that is breathing it's last breaths. I've posted before with inquiries about the current offerings - because although I want to wait for the 970s I am afraid I will have to buy out of necessity before October. I was thinking if I could go a little low-end and get it cheaper then I might be able to justify buying something faster in a year.

    So - having blathered on about that - my question is, is anyone using the 867 Dual G4 machine for graphics intensive design / video? I do mainly Photoshop, but also want to do heavy panorama work in Ptools and want to try out video at some point.

    Is the machine fast with OSX on it?
    How are OSX apps like Photoshop?
    Is it worth the upgrade (from a 350mhz G3 upgraded PowerCenter150)?
    Should I try and hold out for something better?

    I've tried these machines out in stores, but they always seem sluggish. However, I know store models are not always well taken care of. I basically want a real-life opinion about these machines. What is it like to have one on your desk and make a living with it?

    Thanks in advance for any help! Man I wish Apple would put out the 970s sooner - it would make it so much easier for me and many other people.

    Joe
     
  2. bousozoku Moderator emeritus

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2002
    Location:
    Gone but not forgotten.
    #2
    I have a PowerCenter 120 that I had upgraded to a 604e/225. I also have a B&W G3/400 and a dual G4/800, so I hope my experience might help you.

    I've found that the G3 is acceptably quick but that's mostly because its hard drive is faster than average. The dual 800 is more acceptable running Photoshop6 is classic mode--it runs much better in Mac OS 9 in any case. I haven't tried Photoshop 7 yet. Illustrator 10 runs well, but 11 is on the way with supposed performance enhancements. GoLive and LiveMotion run well. I also use Corel Graphics Suite 10 and it's sluggish but that's mostly just their code. (I can't afford XPress right now and considering that they want big money for upgrades, I'm waiting.) Corel Draw works fine with multi-page documents. :) Color control--who needs it? :D

    The one thing about the machines as they come from Apple is that they don't have enough RAM. Max it out and you'll be much happier with the performance. An upgraded video card might help and a faster hard drive/controller card would help as well.
     
  3. TMJ1974 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2002
    #3
    Love mine!

    The ones in the store only have a pathetic 256MB of RAM. I think the pointer from the mouse uses that much...LOL

    Seriously though, when you crank it up with 1.5-2GB of RAM, you'll be flying. I have all of Adobe's products....much faster than on my QS733. I will say though, Apple's software is better at using the multi processors. Ex. Final Cut Pro vs Premiere...Premiere is noticeably slower. Still works better than on the PC at school.

    Also, someone had a great piece of advice, don't by the 970 when it first comes out. Wait until you hear the "glitches" first. I waited to get the DP867, so I knew all about the noisy fan, etc...then I decided to get it anyway.

    The DP867 can also save on your heating bill. I live in Maryland, where it's cold right now. This thing heats up the room by 10 degrees (no joke). It's an average size office, with ceiling fan. Does anyone else have this experience ?

    Still, for all it's quirks, I wouldn't trade it for anything except the DP1.42 :)

    Tim
     
  4. robotrenegade macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2002
    Location:
    Greenville,SC
    #4
    I agree my powerbook and tower run a lot fast once GB of ram was put in.
     
  5. steeleclipse macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2002
    Location:
    Canada
    #5
    Re: Love mine!

    YOU SAID IT! My girlfriend loves when my DP867 MDD is on because it is HOT in my room :D

    BTW: This is great for the winter... and the windtunnel noise isnt very desirable

    For the skeptical designer: if you can get over those two points, you will be a very happy mac user. Finally a real powerhouse of a Mac. To tell you the truth, I wasn't thrilled with Mac hardware before, it was the OS that kept me coming back... Now I couldn't possibly be happier. With a Gig of Ram and running 10.2 NOTHING SLOWS THIS BEAST DOWN...

    GO FOR IT! i was worried that it wasn't the most powerful model out, so I would have lost of bit of quality. NOT AT ALL! I make heavy use of FCP, Photoshop, Illustrator, ID2 and After Effects, and I don't have any speed issues-even when they are all processing at the same time. I can apply Gaussian Blurs to 200MB files while capturing video and be working on vector art in at the same time with no sluggish performance at all.

    I tried the 1.25 MDD and noticed a ever so slight difference.. not enough to shell out another grand or so... let me know if you need any more info
     
  6. lem0nayde thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2002
    Location:
    NYC
    #6
    Re: Re: Love mine!

    Wow, now THATS a recommendation. So do you think that once I add a butt-load of RAM to the base model, it will be all the speed I need? Do you work with a Wacom tablet - I do a lot of freehand drawing in Photoshop / Painter. Is your machine responsive to say - drawing with a size 300 brush in a 300dpi Photoshop document? Can it keep up with your movements?

    And what about this heat thing - is it a serious problem? Does it get irritating in the summertime? Does Apples fan upgrade apply to this particular model - can I get a replacement fan to cut out the windtunnel noise? I think the noise would bother me more than the heat.

    Thanks for your help,
    Joe


     
  7. robotrenegade macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2002
    Location:
    Greenville,SC
    #7
    My friend has a 668 Powerbook w/1GB of ram and it runs the wacom with ease. Heat is not a problem. A couple of weeks ago they fixed the fan problem. You are all good.
     
  8. Grokgod macrumors 6502a

    Grokgod

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2002
    Location:
    Deep within the heart of madness!
    #8
    Fixed fan problem

    They fixed the fan issue?
    what models got fixed?
    are you referring to the fact APPLE is offering a so called free power supply at the cost of 20 bucks to replace the loud ones??
     
  9. beatle888 macrumors 68000

    beatle888

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2002
    #9
    to the originator of this post.....



    :D you are gonna LOVE IT :D
    wow you sure are ready for an upgrade. and to all you photoshop users, dont forget theres a memory setting in photoshops preferences. it allows you to dedicate ram to photoshop by using a slider ranging from ?% to 100%.

    i dont know why they (adobe) did this. i thought osx was suppose to handle the memory allocation. anyway i always crank it up when working on large files...and of course, restarting photoshop for it to take affect.
     
  10. steeleclipse macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2002
    Location:
    Canada
    #10
    Re: Re: Re: Love mine!

    RAM is the most important speed factor on this machine... OS X is truly made or broken due to the RAM factor. I have NO crashes, freezes, small errors because I have a Gig of RAM. I recommend that as the least amount to have.

    Although I don't use a 300 brush very often, I have used the 6x8 wacom tablet on resolutions HIGHER than 300dpi, for larger format jobs and I have never noticed an error. When you get into dual processors, and with Photoshop, which does a decent job of utilizing the two processors, you are pretty much safe, considering the minimum specs on a graphics tablet.

    I haven't had my Mac in the summer, however I, like most, have central air, and I don't think it will be an issue.

    When it comes down to it, the only issues (not complaints, just minor details) that I have are cosmetic, being the sound and the heat. Apple is now issuing a replacement power supply to solve the noise situation, so you should be fine. I know you are being cautious because of the issues that you have heard about this particular Mac. Just remember, a lot of people are whiners and make things sound like they are worse than they are.

    Before I get attacked, don't get me wrong. It does make noise that is somewhat unpleasant, but if you weigh that against the massive amount of positive features, I am sure you will be able to overlook it.

    Hope that helps, let me know if you need anything else. :D
     
  11. steeleclipse macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2002
    Location:
    Canada
    #11
    Re: Fixed fan problem

    FW800 machines
     

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