i7 MBP running Photoshop & Lightroom? Fast enough...???

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by SoCalRich, Apr 25, 2010.

  1. SoCalRich macrumors 6502


    Feb 6, 2010
    Is there anyone on this board running Photoshop/Aperture/Lightroom on a i7 15" or 17" MBP processing RAW 12-15mb files? If so, how does it work for you? Is the MBP fast enough to do the job. I understand a quad core desk top would be faster but maybe really not needed.

    I'm getting ready to pull the trigger on a new computer. I currently have a 6 year old Power Book. I NEED some speed... :D

    I'm thinking VERY seriously about the new MBP 17", i7@2.66, 8GB, 7k500 HDD. Maybe buying a BIG monitor if I really need to.

    I like the idea of sitting in my easy chair editing my Photos. I was doing this with elements but decided to move up to CS4/5. Elements was running VERY slow on my G4 1.5GHz PB and Photoshop won't run on this G4 at all. I was able to work with the 17" screen size ok.

    Then I was thinking of a new iPad or MBP 13" for my field review of shots, my email and surfing and doing the "heavy lifting" with a desk top.

    I really liked the new iMac 27" quad core i7 but have been scared away with all the "screen issues" among other hardware issues. Rev 2 will probably be better.

    Then there's the Mac Pro, quad & 8 core, RAID 5, etc, etc... I know I would wait for the new updated models supposedly in June

    The only problem with a desk top is that I would be relegated to my office which isn't as comfortable as my easy chair in the living room. But if I only did my photo editing on the desktop that would be ok.

    I really don't want to spend a lot of money and then wish I had bought something more powerful or faster. I don't do any gaming or video rendering. Just Photoshop or Aperture and Lightroom.

    Will the i7 MBP do everything I need it to do. That would be simpler to just have one computer to use.

    I have heard that even the C@D 13" 2.4 will handle Photoshop "adequately" although I really don't have any personal experience.

    Decisions, decisions, decisions....

    Any and all suggestions, advice etc would be very much appreciated. :D
  2. cluthz macrumors 68040


    Jun 15, 2004
    Photoshop does fly on any C2D compared to the G4, we're talking several times as fast. The new i5 and i7 models are even faster.

    What kind of work do you do in photoshop, because 8GB RAM is pretty expensive and would be a waste unless you work with very large projects.
    Upgrading RAM is very easy to do later on and RAM prices will drop.
  3. SoCalRich thread starter macrumors 6502


    Feb 6, 2010
    Thanks for your quick feedback. I appreciate it!

    I'm a serious armature photographer looking to take it up to the next level. Right now shoot RAW2 with my Panasonic G1. File sizes run 12-15mb starting out. With adding layers and tweaks I imagine the file size will increase quite a bit. They did in Elements. I plan using some of the plug-ins from Topaz and Alien Skin.

    I also thought about adding more RAM later. I just wasn't sure about my immediate needs. I'd hate to get a new MBP and then find out I have a processing "bottleneck" because of the lack of enough RAM or HDD speed. I understood that Photoshop is "CPU and RAM intensive" once the program is loaded.

    I haven't been able to run Photoshop yet because of my G4 incompatibility with CS 4/5. I will buy CS5 as soon as possible. I have over 1,000 shots waiting to be processed. So i want to hit the ground running...

    What kind of work do you do with Photoshop? Professional or ??? Do you publish or sell your work?

    Any other idea's are appreciated...

  4. fuzzylemurs macrumors member

    Jul 10, 2008
    I cannot speak for personal experience, but I do represent some clients that I support that are professional photographers. I just replaced a 2008 MBP C2D system for one of them that is astounded with how much faster her new i7 MBP is over her previous C2D. She uses Lightroom and Photoshop nearly exclusively for these machines.

    One caveat is that her previous MBP was using a 320GB 7200rpm HDD; her new system is a 512GB SSD...

    She sells work, and is published.
  5. SoCalRich thread starter macrumors 6502


    Feb 6, 2010
    That is very interesting. Thanks for the info. I also thought about a SSD. I was told by someone that programs will load in a flash but that Photoshop once loaded, uses CPU and RAM more then HD space. I have no idea how true that is and I can find any info on Adobe's site other then some basic system requirements.

    Thanks again for your input... It's appreciated.
  6. espressoroast macrumors member


    Feb 3, 2008
    On my 2.2 SantaRosa MBP, Aperture 3 was painfully slow. Mundane things like scrolling, zooming were laggy, let alone RAW editing.
    I just received my Core i7 15" with High-res and 500gb 7200rpm and this thing flies with my 75GB Aperture library.
    I was expecting some speed-ups but I was genuinely surprised with how much.

    Oh, and also,
    The new display (hi-res) is delightful beyond words. All other displays (including previous Macs) around me now look like mud after this.
  7. Eddyisgreat macrumors 601

    Oct 24, 2007
    An SSD will help in a variety of cases, including this one. Shortened start up time may not seem like very much, but when you're wizzing across several Apps in the suite, launching plugins or loading giant files (if off the SSD) then you'll enjoy the experience that much more. PS CS4 Extended + Nik Viveza 2 Plugin takes about 3 seconds to launch on my machine (SSD, specs in sig), and that helps alot when i'm trolling around in Lightroom and need to pop open PS for whatever reason especially when dealing with impatient people in the field.
  8. SoCalRich thread starter macrumors 6502


    Feb 6, 2010
    Very cool... I'm really glad to hear it!!! Just out of curiosity, what made you decide on the 15" instead of the 17"?... :D
  9. SoCalRich thread starter macrumors 6502


    Feb 6, 2010
    I like the "speed" you are referring to running multiple apps and plugins. Makes sense to me.

    I see by your sig you're running the Intel SSD. You must have installed that after you bought your MBP. What is your opinion on the Apple SSD's? Any concerns? I understand the Intel SSD's are a better unit.

    Thanks again for your input.
  10. amoergosum macrumors 6502

    Oct 20, 2008
    In my opinion 15" is the perfect compromise when it comes to traveling and still being able to edit photos comfortably.
  11. Pagga macrumors 6502


    Feb 21, 2009
    Closer to the Artic circle than I like to be
    Such complete bias, unusable info. I travel easy peasey japanesy with 17". So what? Be happy with your choice, by all means.
  12. Eddyisgreat macrumors 601

    Oct 24, 2007
    I wouldn't purchase the Apple SSD by virtue of it being an 'aftermarket' part from Apple that commands a hefty premium for, really, no reason. The x25-m is a way better deal based on raw numbers as well as my own experience and those on these boards. I like that Apple is offering such a choice for their less technical customers, but Apple's own verbiage, like many OEMs, indicates that the SSD upgrade is offered to "enhance durability" with speed being sort of like a secondary function (thought still much faster than traditional drives), wheras Intel markets the x25-m to "gamers, media creators, and technology enthusiasts" (read: speed!)
  13. neversaynever macrumors member


    Apr 12, 2009
    Well, I for one use a late 2008 imac 24'' core 2 duo 3.06 with 4gb of ram and I have canon eos 5d. it also produces 12-20 mb raw files. I use aperture 3 and photoshop in your interest area. never had a problem with that. they are more than usable, responsive and fast. if I were to buy a SSD I can't imagine how fast things could be. One warning though, if you're serious about photography, get an antiglare. 15 is fine enough with hi-res. for the record I also use illustrator, after effects, indesign, final cut pro and cinema 4d (with their modules and plugins) photoshop, illustrator, aperture and indesign are A+, cinema 4d B and after effects and final cut pro would score C if I compare for speed. one thing to note though, c4d after effects and fcp are responsive and fast but they have (comparative) ridiculously long render times. but if you are going to take renders nothing is fast enough anyway. my $0.02.
  14. sth macrumors 6502a

    Aug 9, 2006
    The old world
    If you're still using a G4, the speed difference will be mind blowing. :D

    Since you want to do heavy photo editing on the machine I guess you need a bit of drive space. Since big SSDs are still hugely expensive I would go with the 500gb 7200rpm hard-disk for the time being and possibly upgrade to a SSD in a year or two.

    For the RAM: 8gb is expensive at the moment, no matter if you buy it at Apple or upgrade it yourself. 4gb is okay for "normal" photoshop editing of RAW images. You can upgrade later.

    That's not necessarily the notebook's fault. Aperture 3 still has some issues.
  15. lasuther macrumors 6502a

    Feb 13, 2004
    Grand Haven, Michigan

    The 27" iMac is a big performance boost over the MBP. Most people aren't having screen issues. You can buy from a local Apple store or a Refurbished if you are really concerned about the screen. I process a lot of raw pictures on my iMac. Photo editing on a 2560x1440 27" iMac screen can't be beat.

Share This Page