Photo editing setup (iMac vs Mini)

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by noobinator, Jan 20, 2013.

  1. noobinator, Jan 20, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2013

    macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2009
    Location:
    Pasadena, CA
    #1
    I currently edit my photos on a 11" air. Not quite ideal so I want to upgrade to a 27" setup.

    I'll be using lightroom and photoshop mainly on this new rig.

    Which would you choose:

    1. iMac 27 - $1799

    2. Mac mini with 8gb ram, apple magic mouse, wireless keyboard and a dell ultrasharp 27" u2713hm - $1476

    Edit: i have a time capsule already as well for extra storage
     
  2. macrumors 603

    thekev

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2010
    #2
    If you go with the mini, consider NEC over Dell. I'd consider them to be the best in the budget friendly category. Either way you will want a colorimeter. With NEC you'd want spectraview software. I'd go with this and this. It's $1200 including colorimeter and software. That kit now uses an i1 display pro, which is probably the best calibration tool in its price range. On its own they go for around $250. The NEC kits use custom firmware ones that only work with their displays, but in older colorimeters the results were better than generic units. If you go with the imac, budget for a colorimeter. You'll need it anyway. Check uniformity when it arrives. If uniformity is bad, send it back. Buy directly from Apple as resellers generally do not offer no questions asked returns. In either case load it with ram. 16GB isn't even remotely unreasonable for this. 8 is the lowest I'd consider viable. With either one you can add it later. Just test any third part ram prior to placing the machine back in service.

    I hope this helps. Also with Dell I think the U2711 is still their high end option.
     
  3. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2012
    Location:
    U.S.
    #3
    Both would get the job done.

    You didnt mention the model Mini you were looking at but the base one wouldnt be "that" much better than your ? 2012 MBA.

    You have left a number of things un answered..

    The better one would be the Imac & I personally would get the imac 27
     
  4. macrumors 68000

    James Craner

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2002
    Location:
    Bristol, UK
    #4
    I personally would go for the iMac - better graphics card. I would also go for a fusion drive as well if your budget can stretch that far.
     
  5. macrumors 603

    thekev

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2010
    #5
    It makes virtually no difference. Lightroom won't use OpenCL. Photoshop uses it in a very limited fashion.
     
  6. macrumors 68000

    James Craner

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2002
    Location:
    Bristol, UK
    #6
    Well, yes and no - but can save a lot of time when using filters with Open CL, but if you don't use filters much I will agree.

    from www.barefeats.com

    im12p2_iri.png
     
  7. macrumors 603

    thekev

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2010
    #7
    I've never found a good use for iris blur. I guess that one would save a lot of time. It didn't exist until they added OpenCL. Barefeats shows liquify and a couple others as much faster too. I tested liquify with an old P45 file in cpu mode (disabled gpu in preferences) and it still isn't that slow. It's just a few seconds as opposed to nearly instant when it comes to rendering the result. I'm not sure what kind of mesh barefeats used to make theirs take so long. At this point I'd say most people would see the most benefit from ram and a really nice display. Those would be my priorities. Apple's gpu options aren't that great. You have to go to the $2k realm to get anything good. I don't find the scrubby zooming to be noticeably better with a really good gpu.
     
  8. thread starter macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2009
    Location:
    Pasadena, CA
    #8
    Thanks for he replies all. I'm really leaning towards the iMac 27 right now. It is just so darn pretty and sounds good enough for my needs.
     

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