iMac 5K, Photoshop CS 2015 and El Capitan - blazing fast

Discussion in 'iMac' started by aevan, Jun 20, 2015.

  1. aevan macrumors 68000

    aevan

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2015
    Location:
    Serbia
    #1
    Just a month ago, things were different. My iMac 5K (i5 3.5, M290X, 16Gb RAM) was a great computer that did fine. Just fine. I mean, I liked it a lot, the screen was amazing and I never regretted my purchase, but not everything was great. I did find the UI lag a bit annoying. Also, Photoshop CC was a bit problematic on a Mac. I don't really remember when I started noticing it, but Photoshop would sometimes feel sluggish. Especially when moving around groups with lots of layers and lots of layer effects. This did not occur on Windows, even on lower spec computers.

    Fast forward to today. My iMac is running the DP1 of El Capitan and a brand new Photoshop, CC 2015.

    Well, first of all, the iMac is really fast on El Capitan. Faster than my i7 MacBook Pro 15" Retina, so I can imagine the horsepower was always there, but Yosemite somehow managed to bring it down. Everything, from UI animations to PDFs is really smooth now and 100% lag free and the computer just feels really fast. Then more good news: the new Photoshop got rid of all the lag, and moving those demanding groups is as fast as it should be. Every other part of the app feels speedy as well. In fact, for the first time in a long while, the Photoshop experience is better on OS X than on a PC. And for me, Photoshop is the single most important program I use.

    So, I finished work for today and thought - this is the best and fastest computer I've used for Photoshop. And I've used it on faster PCs, i7s with high end Nvidia cards - the iMac 5K feels faster now. Even better, it should be faster (!) when Adobe implements Metal.

    If any Photoshop user is still considering whether to get the iMac 5K or not, just wanted to share my experiences.
     
  2. ljparis macrumors newbie

    ljparis

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2012
    Location:
    British Columbia
    #2
    My experience exactly. I couldn't be happier with my iMac Retina, Lightroom/Photoshop - fast, fast, fast!
     
  3. shrugbutt macrumors newbie

    shrugbutt

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2013
    Location:
    Leicester. U.K
    #3
    Good to hear a positive response from an established member. I too am on the threshold of purchasing a new Imac, mainly for the use of Lightroom and Photoshop CC vis Photography and High-end retouching. In paricular, for high -end retouching where Photoshop files may reach around 500 megs, would, in your opinion, a fully loaded imac be sufficient, or should I consider a Mac pro ? Would be grateful for any insight as I am just alittle concerned about buying into insufficent requirements.Many thanks in anticipation.
     
  4. aevan thread starter macrumors 68000

    aevan

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2015
    Location:
    Serbia
    #4
    I have no experience with a Mac Pro - but I'm guessing the iMac, even the i5 option, will do just as fine. Mac Pro shows the best results with workflows that require a lot of threads such as 3D and video rendering and Photoshop is not too demanding in this regard. I could be wrong, but I think the upgraded i7 iMac 5K actually does better in Photoshop than Mac Pro. Either way, I don't think you'd notice the difference.

    Mac Pro can be upgraded to 64Gb RAM while iMac can take max 32Gb. But I really don't think you need more than 32Gb, even for really large images (in fact, even 16Gb is enough....)

    The screen, on the other hand, I think it will boost productivity more than any CPU will. The ability to view 15Mpix images at 100% is a gamechanger, in my opinion. You could, however, get several nice 4K or even up to three 5K monitors (using 2 Thunderbolt ports for each one) for your Mac Pro and have the same experience. It will cost you a lot more, though.

    I don't want to give you bad advice as I've never used a Mac Pro, but I am certain the iMac would handle your large PSD files with ease.
     
  5. yjchua95 macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2011
    Location:
    GVA, KUL, MEL (current), ZQN
    #5

    Only faster than the baseline quad core nMP though. The 6 core nMP blows it out of the water.
     
  6. aevan thread starter macrumors 68000

    aevan

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2015
    Location:
    Serbia
    #6
    Still, quite fast enough, I'd say.
     
  7. yjchua95 macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2011
    Location:
    GVA, KUL, MEL (current), ZQN
    #7
    Undeniably true.
     
  8. shrugbutt macrumors newbie

    shrugbutt

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2013
    Location:
    Leicester. U.K
    #8
    Thanks for the advice guys. Everything will help me towards a final decision.
     
  9. aliensporebomb macrumors 68000

    aliensporebomb

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2005
    Location:
    Minneapolis, MN, USA, Urth
    #9
    Running i7 5k Mac and the thing is a beast. If ElCap is as fast as reported it ought to positively fly off my desk.
     
  10. TechZeke macrumors 68020

    TechZeke

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2012
    Location:
    Rialto, CA
    #10
    Good news. I was definitely planning to upgrade to 5K this fall. (I'm on a 6770M 2011 27" iMac so I could definitely go for an upgrade)

    From all the reports about El Cap, I think El Cap has become the new Snow Leopard. Yosemite is undeniably slow unless you are on high end hardware and/or on an SSD. In some cases, even Windows 8.1 is faster than Yosemite on my iMac. Glad Apple finally realized this.
     
  11. yjchua95 macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2011
    Location:
    GVA, KUL, MEL (current), ZQN
    #11
    Given that it's an optimization release, it should probably be named Snow Yosemite :D
     
  12. scottrichardson macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2007
    Location:
    Ulladulla, NSW Australia
    #12
    I have come from an 8-core 2009 mac pro, to the 4GHz top specced Retina iMac. I do heavy photoshop work and I couldn't be happier. It's faster than my Mac Pro at everything - responsiveness, app launching, to processing. Love it. Do not regret anything.
     
  13. ryanbates macrumors regular

    ryanbates

    Joined:
    May 30, 2010
    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    #13
    This is good to hear! I recently picked up the 3.5GHz i5 model at a really good price ($1750) and I've yet to open it. I'm trying to decide if should return it and get the BTO i7 or not. Not sure if the price difference from what I paid really justifies the upgrade to i7. Thoughts?

    The most high-end thing I would use it for is Lightroom work and then audio editing in Audition.
     

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