Current vs. previous iMac 27 for RAW editing

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Noeb, Aug 9, 2014.

  1. Noeb macrumors newbie

    Aug 8, 2014
    Hi folks!

    I need a new mac for RAW editing, and I'm considering a Late 2012 iMac 27" with these specs :

    - 3.2 GHz i5 QuadCore
    - 1 TB regular disk 7200 rpm
    - 16 GB RAM
    - 2 GB video memory
    - Bought one year ago, good condition. Bought with Apple care protection plan, don't know if it's 1 or 3 years

    Q1: How does this stand up against the current modell, with special regards to photo editing?

    Q2: What's a fair price for this (used) machine?

    Q3: I really want an SSD to be part of my new sette. I've talked to Apple service people - the cost would be ridiculously high to install a Fusion or SSD to this machine. What's the best option? Booting from a SSD - raid via Thunderbolt?

    Thanks a lot in advance!
  2. Apple fanboy macrumors Penryn

    Apple fanboy

    Feb 21, 2012
    Behind the Lens, UK
    Q1: my specs are similar (see below) and for LR, DXO, NIK software it's pretty quick.
    Q2: check out eBay in your local area to determine a good price.
    Q3: I went with the Fusion Drive option, but expect I'll outgrow it before I retire the machine. I would go with a USB 3 or Thunderbolt to boot from. Raid would be better, but more expensive. Personally go with a smallish SSD and use for OS, Apps and live projects. Use the internal for archiving older ones.
    Just make sure to include both drives in your TM back up though!
  3. MCAsan macrumors 601


    Jul 9, 2012
    Wait for the new product announcements in Sept. With luck Apple will introduce an iMac and a ATD with 4K screens. Even if you don't want a 4K iMac, that intro should push down prices of non-4K iMacs.
  4. Apple fanboy macrumors Penryn

    Apple fanboy

    Feb 21, 2012
    Behind the Lens, UK
    I bet they don't. Maybe 2015.
  5. bhtwo macrumors 6502a


    Dec 31, 2012
    Oxford UK
    Cripes... I do RAW on a mini first gen... Igb ram, photoshop CS5 and a Philips CRT 19".


    You guys are nuts.

    Oh... and 10.6.8
  6. mtbdudex macrumors 68000


    Aug 28, 2007
    SE Michigan
    I'm still getting daily use from this 27" iMac.....
    It's got 2TB internal HD and I use 2TB time machine....I figure in 1-2 years I'll update to latest iMac and then move this to my wifes craft there is a 2007 24" iMac still working.....

    Remember Mac's have much more life than WinTel machines....

  7. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Jan 5, 2006
    Redondo Beach, California
    My 27" iMac is a little older and slower and it works fine for RAW editing photos.

    The single most important thing is the speed of the storage device that holds the data. (assuming you have enough RAM.) The data can be on an external SSD or and external RAID connected via either Thunderbolt or USB3.

    But I'm still using my Firewire 800 drives with a FW800/Thunderbolt dongle and it works reasonably well.

    You don't really need to spend a lot for editing still images, now that RAM is cheap just get 16GB and any kind of very fast storage.

    Don't forget to budget for backup. Stow storage is OK for backups. Yu need a Timemachne drive and so off site backups

    Did you say how large you library is? If it can't fit on a single drive then this complicates things and adds a bit of cost.
  8. glenthompson macrumors 68000


    Apr 27, 2011
    I had a SSD installed in my wife's 21.5" 2011 iMac for $140 at an authorized Apple service center. I supplied the drive. I thought about doing the swap myself but it was a little more complex than I felt like trying. We replaced the existing drive with a SSD as she didn't need that much space.

    That iMac will be fine for photo editing.

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