Best 27" for photography?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by TammyW, Nov 30, 2012.

  1. TammyW macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2012
    #1
    I have been using my old white iMac for too long, and I can barely use Lightroom and Photoshop together. We are not gamers, and I use this computer for mostly only photography. I keep my RAW images on back-up TB drives.

    Any guidance on what to upgrade to with the 27"?

    TIA,
    Tammy
     
  2. photoz macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2006
    #2
    i7 CPU
    up the RAM on your own to atleast 16GB, easy to goto 24 or 32 though via cheaper 3rd party.
    Alteast the 1GB vid card, preferably the 680MX 2GB card.
    Fusion drive

    Get the best system you can.
     
  3. TammyW thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Nov 30, 2012
    #3
    Thank you! I assume we can get the minimum RAM and upgrade afterwards, like we did with our first iMac?
     
  4. SOLLERBOY macrumors 6502a

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    Aug 8, 2008
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    UK
    #4
    I got the i7 because I've experienced the hyperthreading on my MBP, must have. Then the HDD on my iMac is boring so i went with a Fusion, got 3TB seen as my 1Tb is nearly full. Then I initially went for the 675MX but heard the 680MX would blow it out the water and would come in handy for some photoshop/final cut stuff. Before you know it i'm maxed out bar the RAM which I'll do myself.
     
  5. kaelell macrumors 6502

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    Nov 16, 2009
    #5
    if you have been making do with an old mac this long, I would hazard a guess you probably wont need the i7 and could save some money there.
     
  6. photoz macrumors member

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    Jun 17, 2006
    #6
    Assuming you get the 27", yes.
    Crucial has 16GB kits for $74. So 32GB for $148 is pretty freaking sweet.
     
  7. SOLLERBOY macrumors 6502a

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    Aug 8, 2008
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    UK
    #7
    They don't seem to have the 4GB sticks though, only 8. I wouldn't mind getting 2x4GB to boost it to 16GB while the bank account recovers.
     
  8. TammyW thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Nov 30, 2012
    #8
    Well I wouldn't say I've been making due. It's actually prevented me from doing much lately. Our old one just struggles too much with Photoshop, sadly :( I guess this is the area I'm most unsure of - the i5 or i7 and the graphics upgrade. This just isn't my area of expertise!
     
  9. Richard Peters macrumors regular

    Richard Peters

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    Jul 18, 2010
    Location:
    Surrey, UK
    #9
    I've been holding off an iMac purchase to wait for the 2012 model, and my main use for this machine is photo editing.

    The decision for me is mostly easy, max out the processor and graphics card (I will be doing a little more video than I have previously done, now I'll have a system that can do it properly) and I've just ordered 32gb RAM from Crucial.

    The only sticking point for me is the hard drive. I don't think the way Fusion works will be of use for photographers with huge libraries, especially if you access files randomly from the archive (if you only open them once to edit, Fusion won't think of it as a frequently accessed file, so it won't be moved to the SSD, if my thinking is right?.

    So I'm a little worried there will be a bottleneck in speeds. I read an early report that briefly touched on this, I'll have to try and find it again.

    That SSD only option is sooo expensive though :eek:
     
  10. TammyW thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Nov 30, 2012
    #10
    Are you talking about the flash storage? Ouch!
     
  11. charlieroberts macrumors 6502a

    charlieroberts

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2007
    #11
    I saw your portfolio, congratulations!

    Have you checked if you can install a 2.5 sad in the imac? 512 GB are getting pretty good in relative pricing, or buy the regular HDD and then buy a thunderbolt SSD and run your imac from there! That sounds nice! hehe
     
  12. Richard Peters, Nov 30, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2012

    Richard Peters macrumors regular

    Richard Peters

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    Jul 18, 2010
    Location:
    Surrey, UK
    #12
    I found one of the articles I'd read about Fusion, here

    The part that particularly stood out to me was this, as one of my camera's is the D800:

    With the help of Lori Grunin, our digital imaging editor, I then tried timing how long it took Photoshop to load a multilayered 1.8GB PSD file built from 16-bit raw images from the Nikon D800. This seemed promising at first, since the initial load into Photoshop took about 30 seconds, but subsequent loads were all over the place timewise, going as high as 49 seconds, and then back down to the low 30s.

    We concluded (and Apple did not disagree) that Photoshop has too much of its own file and memory management activity going on in the background, effectively superseding Fusion.


    I know it's early days for testing, but still, I can't help but think whilst Fusion will work well for many (most?), it will not be entirely great for my needs.

    Thank you :)

    I'm not sure how confident I would be in opening up and swapping a drive over. Thunderbolt SSD is quite pricey still from what I looked at, so might not be much cheaper for similar size? I blame the Macbook Air. I purchased that as a stop gap and I'm now spoilt by SSD speeds!
     
  13. viper1165 macrumors newbie

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    Sep 7, 2007
    #13
    I've actually been to your website before Richard. Great stuff by the way!
     
  14. smr macrumors 6502a

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    Sep 14, 2007
    Location:
    Shropshire, UK
    #14
    I have similar concerns over Fusion, Aperture and large photo libraries so I bit the bullet and went with the 768SSD. It will hold my OS/apps/docs and photo library with some room for expansion. As a UK university lecturer I get approx 15% off, and I also like the idea of having an iMac with no mechanical drives inside (I have had hard drives and optical drives fail in the past). Music and video (ripped Blu-ray) will sit on a RAID1 2x3TB Thunderbold external drive.

    This is an expensive solution but one I am happy with :D I hope it lasts me at least five years.
     
  15. Richard Peters macrumors regular

    Richard Peters

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    Jul 18, 2010
    Location:
    Surrey, UK
    #15
    Thank you, appreciated :)

    Somehow, knowing I'm not the only one looking at going this route makes me feel a little better about it! :D
     
  16. TammyW thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Nov 30, 2012
    #16
    I agree - beautiful images!

    I have the Canon 5DM3, so files aren't quite as large as the D800.

    What to do, what to do?
     
  17. flynz4 macrumors 68040

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    Aug 9, 2009
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #17
    I am also planning to order the 768 GB SSD. With a large photo library... I want it resident on the SSD. With fusion... any SSD miss would resort to the single spindle drive.

    Option 2 would be to move my A3 library to my Pegasus R4. It is HDD based, but quite fast with 4 spindles. Like you... I am totally spoiled by SSDs... so I think I'll just eat the $1300.

    In a few years, this will all be mute as HDDs continue to disappear from client machines... at least the type I would buy. ;)

    /Jim
     
  18. kaelell macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2009
    #18
    I will come at it from a different angle, like you I too am a photographer and Have chosen the 27" with graphics card upgrade but am sticking with the i5
    I have bought Ram from crucial rather then apple, and am going with the 1TB fusion drive over the 3TB because I wanted to use bootcamp/Windows. ( cannot currently do that with 3TB drive).

    I could probably at a stretch get the money for the i7, but after reading various threads and advice from people, its probably not going to make much notable difference for the cost. I'd say you will be perfectly fine for the next 5 years. However if the extra cost is not that much trouble for you and you arnt in a position where you must make some sacrifices then sure why not just stick it in, if only for the resale value in x years.
     

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