5K iMac for Logic Pro X

Discussion in 'iMac' started by givemeanapple, Oct 2, 2016.

  1. givemeanapple macrumors Demi-God


    Oct 2, 2016
    Hi, this is my first topic here.

    I'm interested into getting a 27" 5K iMac to use at home especially with Logic Pro X 90% of the time. I'm not looking for the ULTIMATE performace, I just want to know if this iMac would be enough to run Logic Pro X with a few plugins without any slutters or lags. Here is the config I was looking for:

    3.2GHz Processor
    1TB Storage

    • 3.2GHz quad-core Intel Core i5 processor
    • Turbo Boost up to 3.6GHz
    • 8GB (two 4GB) memory, configurable up to 32GB
    • 1TB Fusion Drive1
    • AMD Radeon R9 M390 with 2GB video memory
    • Retina 5K 5120-by-2880 P3 display
    Also I wanted to know if the R9 M390 is enough to power the amount of pixels and if the UI feels smooth or sluggish.

    Thanks :)
  2. mpe macrumors 6502

    Sep 3, 2010
    The specs can handle Logic (and just about any other professional software) just fine.

    Definitely get 2TB Fusion as there is a big difference between 1TB and 2TB versions.

    M390 is OK for 2D. In fact a little known fact is that despite having less amount of shader units it is tiny bit faster in pure 2D load than 395 thanks to slightly higher base core frequency.
  3. uller6 macrumors regular


    May 14, 2010
    I use my late 2014 5k for Logic X, and it's awesome. I have the 3.5 GHz i5, 24 Gb RAM, R9 290X video card and the 1T fusion drive (with the 128 GB SSD unlike the newer 1T fusion drives that only come with a 24 GB SSD). I've had the computer for about two years now, and it's handled everything I've thrown at it in Logic incredibly well. I can run about 100 simultaneous tracks, and I've never maxed out the computer. Most of my projects have 30-50 tracks with ~5 plugins each.

    I would recommend adding more aftermarket RAM - unfortunately 8 GB is a bit low for Logic X - I'd recommend adding at least another 8 GB, but preferably an extra 16 GB if you can afford it.
  4. mullock87 macrumors member

    May 18, 2012
    The graphics card should be fine for what you do. I would suggest going for either 2TB fusion or all flash storage. Also, for Logic use buy 3rd party RAM to upgrade to 16GB minimum.

    I bought a 5k iMac last week to be purely used with Logic Pro X, the spec I got was...

    i7 6700k
    32GB RAM (upgraded myself)
    512GB Flash

    Although this spec is slightly higher than yours, your spec should be somewhat similar in performance. I've noticed that despite having 32gb RAM it's rare for my Mac to use over 16gb even with the most demanding Logic projects. The i7 processor makes easy work of big 100 track projects with many many plugins, something for you to bear in mind if you can afford to upgrade this.

    It's been a breath of fresh air for me, because previously I had been using a late 2009 27" iMac which could not handle the amount of work I needed the machine to do.
  5. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 604

    Oct 24, 2013
    As the others say the 2tb fusion is a far better prospect (128gb SSD over 24gb SSD in the 1TB). Upgrade the ram yourself add a 16gb kit of 2x 8gb for a total of 24gb. (The machine will take 64gb ram although Apple doesn't officially support this)

    As for the rest it's more how long is a piece of string FCPX runs on all apples computers just fine it's what you want to do with it that will determine the specs you need.
  6. ZMacintosh macrumors 65816


    Nov 13, 2008
    upgrade the ram and you should be set. I'm not sure how plug ins work these days if they've changed, but CPU and RAM really were the main bottlenecks. though I've ran Logic/Protools on a macbook and mac mini nowhere near this spec and it performed moderately okay. this should be be good for a few years no issue,
  7. jeabraham macrumors newbie

    Nov 17, 2011
    Thinking long term, if you're doing a lot of recording of a sessions, especially if you also record any video with your audio, you'll end up needing an external thunderbolt drive for storage, sooner or later. So, you might think of getting the speedy 500GB SSD internally. That should be big enough to keep your current projects and their render files on the SSD, while keeping the original audio files (and archived projects) on the external drive. All spinning hard drives eventually fail, so if you want to avoid future downtime it's nice to only have SSD's inside the case.

    Don't forget you need a Time Capsule or another external backup drive for your backups, or both.

    I ended up getting a 4 drive thunderbolt enclosure and put two drives in it: one drive to use as external storage for assets, and the other to use as a backup drive. I have another Time Capsule in another room, and it alternates backups between the two, so that if fire, flood or theft destroys the room with the computer hopefully the other backup stays safe.

    My entire point is: when you think long-term full system with backups and inevitable drive failures, with recording sessions, etc, it might make sense to just go with a decent sized SSD in the machine, and keep your spinning hard drives external.
  8. givemeanapple thread starter macrumors Demi-God


    Oct 2, 2016
    The 256 gb ssd is a bad idea? Maybe with an external HD to store data, also both the amd m390 or m395 can handle the display fine without getting the animations sluggish?
  9. varian55zx macrumors 6502a


    May 10, 2012
    San Francisco
    You want my opinion I still believe the top end model (even the base model) is the only one worth getting.

    M395, 2tb fusion, 3.3 i5 is a sweet spot for value/performance.

    I stepped mine up with the 512 SSD because I wanted the fastest experience possible. I can tell you I got that.
  10. mullock87 macrumors member

    May 18, 2012
    Few weeks ago I bought a 5k iMac, i7 CPU, 32GB RAM, 512GB SSD and it runs Logic Pro X like a dream. Coming from an old late-2009 27 iMac it's been a massive upgrade for me.
  11. mnewb1 macrumors newbie


    Jun 16, 2012
    With my 2011 27" iMac dead, and no new update last week, I ordered a 2015 5K iMac with i7 CPU 8GB RAM ( I have an additional 16GB at home which will go into new machine) 1TB SSD and the m395X with 4GB...cant wait to fire up Logic and watch it fly
  12. givemeanapple thread starter macrumors Demi-God


    Oct 2, 2016
    I almost decided in an imac with i7,8gb (upgrade later), 512gb sdd and the amd m390. I just need some feedback if its worth to go with either the amd m390 and 512gb ssd or amd m395 with 256gb ssd.
  13. OurDarkness macrumors member


    Oct 11, 2014
    Be a little patient and get both the M395x and the 512GB SSD. I have maxed mine and it works like a charm, except some minor graphics lag in Logic Pro X when resizing the mixer or the arrange window. Not as snappy as I would like but not a deal breaker either.

    If you must absolutely choose between the M395x and the 512 GB SSD, get the M395x. You can always hook up an external disk and move all the samples there.

    Also, definitely get at least 24 GB of RAM (mine is maxed out at 32GB of DDR3 at 2166MHz - again works like a charm). Especially if you are working with big sample libraries or lots of plugins/FX.
  14. givemeanapple thread starter macrumors Demi-God


    Oct 2, 2016
    Is the 395x really necessary? I dont use very graphic extensive tasks I only need the UI on the system to be snappy.
  15. xgman macrumors 601


    Aug 6, 2007

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