Imac for photo editing

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Dezi20, Jun 19, 2017.

  1. Dezi20 macrumors newbie

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    Nottingham
    #1
    Hi I've never owned a iMac before and I'm looking forward to be buying one in the next week or so, I'm a keen amatuer photographer and so will be using iMac for Lightroom and Photoshop but not sure to go with i5 or the i7 model with 2tb fusion drive, 8gb ram (which I'll upgrade myself later). Would I benefit from upgrading to the i7?
    Thanks
     
  2. Wuiffi macrumors 6502a

    Wuiffi

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2011
    #2
    of course you would benefit from the i7.
    The question is, is it enough to justify the price difference. For me it's not

    Personally I'd go for a fast internal SSD and put the image files on a external drive once you are finished editing
     
  3. Chancha macrumors 6502

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    Mar 19, 2014
    #3
    i7 provides significant hyper threading performance, and in Lightroom terms it means faster RAW processing (preview generation), batch export, and general responsiveness during intense adjustments. For the relatively small price difference the performance gain is worth it IMO.

    There is however another concern, some early owners of the i7 models have expressed noise level of the model being particularly more noticeable. If noise is a detrimental factor for your environment then you need to think twice, perhaps see out more reviews (which I am doing now).
     
  4. Dezi20 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #4
    Thanks chancha
    I've heard about the noise issues but as I've never owned an imac before I have nothing to compare it to, however I have read that some people we're considering sending theirs back so it must annoying

     
  5. Chancha macrumors 6502

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    Mar 19, 2014
    #5
    It is a very subjective matter, the user's particular workflow and his room, and more importantly his ears are all factors. I tried to push the demo unit at local Apple Store but it is just the standard config i5 I think base model, and in a really large store with all sorts of other noises so the test was rather meaningless.

    I actually quite like the performance-to-price ratio of the i7-7700k RX580 model, with after market RAM and perhaps a 512GB SSD it hits a sweet spot IMO. I may make do with the noise issue, Apple typically doesn't slip annoying average users and noise level must be one that they consider, it is most probably tolerable.
     
  6. Fishrrman macrumors G3

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    Feb 20, 2009
    #6
    As Wfuiffi mentioned above, the better choice for storage is to get an internal SSD instead of the fusion drive.

    512gb or even 256gb will do. Keep your OS, apps, and accounts on that, along with your "working files". Keep large photo libraries on an external drive. Even an external SSD of, say, 512gb-1tb capacity.

    Insofar as the CPU goes, you'd probably do fine with an i5...
     
  7. cptn.nemo macrumors regular

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    Jun 20, 2016
    #7
    Unless you plan on upgrading every year which you know, not many people can afford, I wouldn't get the i5 just in case you want to push it. What if you want to do some 4K video editing one day. You're spending $2000 on a computer imo its worth the 200 to know you have the power. But I'm impatient and really only shoot 14 bit raw anymore. I have a friend I will be editing 4K video for on occasion also. Also fusion drive sucks you cant control what it puts on the ssd, which I find very frustrating when organizing photos
     
  8. cptn.nemo macrumors regular

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    Jun 20, 2016
    #8
    If its between the ssd or the processor upgrade I would definitely go for the ssd
     
  9. Dezi20 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #9
    That's exactly it, can't really afford both upgrades for a few more weeks and I've been looking at Macs for a few months now but held out cos I heard about the 2017 models.
    Seems most people on other threads are saying SSD is more important too, especially if the i7 has noise issues, maybe the i5 is the way for me as I can't see myself getting into video editing.
    It's a tough choice when you know very little about computers lol
    Thanks for the advice
     
  10. MacDevil7334 macrumors 6502a

    MacDevil7334

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    Oct 15, 2011
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    Austin TX
    #10
    I'm also getting ready to buy one of the new iMac for photography. My use cases are the same as the OP's - Lightroom and Photoshop at a hobbyist level (so no crazy large batch editing).

    Right now, I've pretty much settled on an i5 chip. I'm still open to the i7, but I'm not really convinced I'll get enough benefit from it in enough cases to make the higher temps and louder fan noise worth it. It's a nice performance boost, but I'd need to be convinced. I'm also definitely getting a 512 SSD and upgrading the RAM with an aftermarket kit (probably 16 GB extra but I haven't decided for sure).

    The only question I still have is which i5 model to get. I'm currently trying to decide between the midrange i5 3.5 GHz/Radeon 575 model and the top end i5 3.8 GHz/Radeon 580 model. The higher end model seems like a no-brainer for only $200 dollars. I know the i5 variant in that machine is the 7600K and will run hotter. But reports seem to conflict on whether that will kick up the fan regularly (it's definitely cooler than the i7). Will I see any real benefit from the extra 0.3 GHz clock speed? How about from the 580 GPU? Is the 575 GPU enough to run the 5K screen without lag given I don't plan to do video editing and almost never play games? Any thoughts would be appreciated!
     
  11. thekev macrumors 604

    thekev

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    Aug 5, 2010
    #11
    Hyperthreading can be be a bit overrated. 0.3 Ghz isn't worth much in actual use as opposed to benchmarks that may not reflect atypical use. Lag should never vary based on the installed gpu, because it takes very little to refresh a desktop compared to other tasks. I can't imagine it would vary. If you run into reports of lag, you're best off avoiding the thing entirely.
     
  12. Chancha macrumors 6502

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    Mar 19, 2014
    #12
    Stick with the middle config and only upgrade to 512GB SSD BTO.

    Since small clock difference is not going to benefit you more, the i5-7600 (3.5GHz) is going to be more heat efficient. Same to RX575, the TFlops and 8GB VRAM are only meaningful for video editing and gaming, and you shave off a bit more heat here.

    Fast internal SSD is something I always recommend as a top priority for LR. The app itself, the catalogue, the cache, the previews, they all benefit from faster read/write speed. And if you manage your workflow well, you can make room on this SSD to store RAWs of current project for max performance, and only move them to external slower but higher capacity HDDs once you are done.
     
  13. cptn.nemo macrumors regular

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    Jun 20, 2016
    #13
    Yeah don't bother with the i7 get the ssd and go down a model if u have to for budget. You don't need the 580 card or an i7 for light photo use
     
  14. MacDevil7334 macrumors 6502a

    MacDevil7334

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    #14
    Thanks everyone for the replies! Planning to pull the trigger on a i5 3.5 GHz/Radeon 575/512 SSD tomorrow!
     
  15. bluespark macrumors 65816

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    New York
    #15
    Just seeing this thread, but that sounds like the perfect configuration for what you're after.
     
  16. pookitoo macrumors regular

    pookitoo

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    Apr 16, 2015
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    Paris
    #16
    For me I've just buy the top end because I've found a deal 300 € less than the Apple Store ! I need to do with the fusion drive and everyone recommend to out an ssd ;( but maybe with my workflow I 'll not noticed the lack of speed ! And I had looking in my files and the things I use everyday can take with the system and app : 70go ! And I can split the fusion drive-in one ssd 128 and 2 to hdd ! I think it's a pretty good deal and people forget that ! You can "break" the fusion drive in the top end modèle and I think i7 is really for people who does a lot video editing and photo everyday for living
     
  17. Huginnmuninn macrumors regular

    Huginnmuninn

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    Oct 8, 2011
    #17
    In this recent Macrumors forum thread http://bit.ly/2sZb1rO user EugW notes tests showing "The 7700K is also somewhat faster than the i5 models for Lightroom, but on average, less than 10% faster than the fastest i5." Check out the post for link to tests and chart results. Because of this and my heavy Lightroom use I'm thinking of getting the i5 instead of the i7, and spending the savings towards a 1Tb internal SSD.
     
  18. Dezi20 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jun 19, 2017
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    Nottingham
    #18
    After giving it lots of thought and endless research I think I'll be ordering next week, what I've decided on is-

    I7 4.2 CPU
    8gb ram (upgrade later myself)
    512 SSD
    580 Radeon Pro with 8gb vram

    I want to be certain I don't get any lag and I intend to make sure it lasts me at least 6 yrs, what do you think?
    Suitable or Overkill?
    I'll be the first to admit I know very little about computing and to be honest I'm getting tired of looking and doing research
    Tia
     
  19. guibo macrumors member

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    Jun 8, 2017
    #19
    i bought the exact same for LR and PS. 16GB upgrade on the way to bring it up to 24GB.
     
  20. EugW macrumors 6502a

    EugW

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    Jun 18, 2017
    #20
    Overkill. However I got the same one for Photos and Photoshop. :D (I bought Lightroom but I have not really used it.)

    I also have gotten an extra 16 GB to bring it to 24 GB, and Also hope to keep it for over 5 years.

    I do occasionally encode video though and the i7 is way faster for that.
     
  21. trsblader macrumors 6502

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    May 20, 2011
    #21
  22. Dezi20 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jun 19, 2017
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    #22
    How you finding it? Is it running sweet without any lag?
    --- Post Merged, Jun 22, 2017 ---
    I'd rather go overkill than regret not getting the right one, is yours running smoothly?
     
  23. MacDevil7334 macrumors 6502a

    MacDevil7334

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    Oct 15, 2011
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    Austin TX
    #23
    Not trying to be rude, but what new information are you expecting to get in this thread that you didn't get in the one you started three days ago? You already know from the other thread that the i7 model will net you a <10% performance boost in LR/PS, increased heat and possibly fan noise, and a higher price. Seems to me that the only thing left to do is to decide whether those tradeoffs are worth it for you.
     
  24. EugW macrumors 6502a

    EugW

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    Jun 18, 2017
    #24
    The main reason I was willing to go with overkill is because I can write off part of the cost.

    But yeah, it runs great! :)
     
  25. guibo macrumors member

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    Jun 8, 2017
    #25
    Haven't had a chance to try PS or LR yet
     

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