For video processing & post... iMac or MacPro

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by ingaman, Jan 5, 2013.

  1. ingaman macrumors newbie

    Jan 5, 2013
    Hi all. First post here, so please be kind as I have a lot to ask...

    In the past I had worked on both a G3 iMac and a G5 PowerMac; I made the transition from PowerPC relatively late in the game –got my first MBP in 2010 when i7 came out. So when I received countless kernal panics this year, I was displeased to discover that they were all related to my video card failing from having an external monitor plugged in most of the time.

    Anyway, I'll be sending off my MBP for AppleCare and plan to get a desktop as well that can handle my workflow. The new MacPro does sound tempting, but no word on when it will come out. The iMac 27" (I want slot loading ram) also sounds interesting as I'll be getting a giant Apple screen with it and won't have to suffer with my old Samsung LCD I got on a boxing day sale in 2009.

    Some things I'm wondering, but can't find many details on...
    -Is there a big difference when working with FCP with i7 or Xeon?
    -Are [will?] the graphics cards [likely?] be interchangeable on the MacPro or iMac?
    -Any other majors perks to MacPro that can justify the wait time or cost?

    Pretty much that's it. I know the cosmetic differences and since the updated MacPros aren't even released yet, obviously there's no tech info yet. But if anyone can give me speculative advice, that would be great too. Price is not a HUGE factor, but reliability is more important to me. Thank you.
  2. grooveattack macrumors 6502a

    Jan 9, 2008
    I think before thunderbolt came around the macpro was a no brainer but now thats here, and the top graphics card on an imac being (from what i've heard) very respectable, the line is really blurred.

    Is there any difference in editing on xeon or i7? No. or if there is I would say it is nor worth the jump in cost.

    Macpro will have interchangeable graphics and the imac won't.

    The perks of the macpro used to be expanded internal storage, but with thunder bolt on the iMac makes that no longer an issue.
    I would say that these days the only real difference is upgradable graphics. There is of course lots of little things like ECC ram in the pro, but now the iMacs have the pro beat there as well with faster RAM (1333 VS. 1600MHz)

    A good thing to remember is with FCP X is that it will use every core and every bit of RAM you throw at it. I think it sometimes comes down to the clock speed vs. cores argument.

    (if your using FCP7 dont bother with a pro. cant use all the ram, cant use all the cores and wont use the graphics card)
  3. monokakata macrumors 68000


    May 8, 2008
    Hilo, Hawai'i
    I agree with grooveattack, except that T-bolt storage isn't cheap yet.

    I can put a fresh 9 TB worth of disks (3 x 3 TB) into my Mac Pro for about $400, a little more if I need extra sleds.

    I don't know how much a T-bolt enclosure with 3 (or more) similar disks might cost, but surely it's a lot more.

    None of this takes away from the fact that the Mac Pro is woefully behind the curve. But you can sure put a lot of storage into it -- and when a new model finally arrives (if . . . ) then almost certainly you can go ahead and use those disks.
  4. grooveattack macrumors 6502a

    Jan 9, 2008
    Yeah TB is still very expensive.

    looking on apple's site a top 27 iMac with a 4X1TB thunderbolt raid is $3098 and a base pro is $2449 and the 12 core is $3799

    tough choice.
  5. ingaman thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 5, 2013
    Thanks everyone! I ordered a full spec 27" iMac. Seems like it will satisfy everything I need for the next 5 or 6 years. I can't justify the Mac Pro (if or when it's released) as I probably won't need to upgrade any of the cards at any point. We mostly shoot on DSLRs, so an SDI capture card won't be necessary. Also I manage storage via USB on multiple duplicated 3.5" 2TB hard drives; it's slow, but far cheaper and equally as reliable. Anyway, thanks again for all your help!! =)

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