MacPro setUp for photographer

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by joubex, Jun 29, 2009.

  1. joubex macrumors member

    joubex

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2008
    Location:
    Montreal/ Canada
    #1
    Hi everybody
    I am waiting for my refurbished Mac Pro Quad 2.93 and I also bought a 6 Gb ram kit from OWC. So I have 2 questions:
    - I process big raw files from a Canon 5D markII and I want to know if it would be better to stay w my 6 Gb kit or to use the last slot w one of the 1Gb which came w the mac pro ?
    - I use photoshop CS4 and lightroom, but I already read that lightroom does not use all of the cores. Do you think I have to switch w Aperture ?
    Thanks for your help

    joubex
    :confused:
     
  2. Jlitespeed macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2009
    #2
    Hi Joubex,

    Look at diglloyd's website (http://diglloyd.com/diglloyd/blog.html). He goes through a lengthy process to get the best out of a MacPro with memory and settings.
    I also process 1DsMKIII and 5DII raw files.
    Hope that helps.

    JT

     
  3. joubex thread starter macrumors member

    joubex

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2008
    Location:
    Montreal/ Canada
    #3
    thanks JT
    I know the diglloyd blog but st it's good to have others opinions
    may I ask you your set up and your opinion about the softwares you use ?
    My old computer is a Power mac G5 2 x 2 ghz and I am pretty sure things will be different w the "Nehalem".
    Joubex
    ;)
     
  4. osin macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2008
    Location:
    New Jersey
    #4
    I don't know where did you read that but on my '08 MacPro Lightroom utilizes all 8 cores. Not in 100% but all of them are used. If you want them to be used in greater percentage you should run more than 1 process at the same time - that is written on diglloyd's blog also... :)
     
  5. joubex thread starter macrumors member

    joubex

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    Feb 20, 2008
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    Montreal/ Canada
  6. Tesselator macrumors 601

    Tesselator

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    Jan 9, 2008
    Location:
    Japan
    #6
    You probably do not want the extra 1GB chip in there. I think digilloyd is on drugs. :D But if you
    notice it hitting the drive cache then add it in. Hitting the cache will be MUCH worse than not
    having triple channel RAM access.


    Also I process a lot of photography and spend a LOT of time on photography sites either talking
    about strobist & macro techniques or evaluating and testing software. I own all pertinent editors
    and have tested them all against each other in many aspects of use.

    A list of the ones I own, have tested, and keep updated are:

    And of course the Bridge+PS+ACR combination.

    The best system by far IMO is the Bridge+PS+ACR combination. The best dedicated "photo editor"
    by far is CaptureOne Pro. I would hate to speculate on a #2 because after C1Pro very many of
    them have unique strengths that could tilt the ratings one way or the other. Almost all of these
    have free trial versions so go and download them all, read the manual GUI introduction so you
    know what you're doing, and test for ease of use, speed, and resulting image quality (IQ). Who
    knows you may like another better.

    Whichever one you end up with GraphicConverter for $35 will make an EXCELLENT companion
    and I can't recommend it highly enough!
     
  7. joubex thread starter macrumors member

    joubex

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    Feb 20, 2008
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    Montreal/ Canada
  8. Tesselator macrumors 601

    Tesselator

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2008
    Location:
    Japan
    #8
    It's like an early christmas yeah? :D

    When testing them be sure to use the same image set so you can compare the differences. Export changes with the app-name tagged on to make it easier. :)

    I usually pick a grainy dark image, one with buttloads of fine detail, one that's over exposed, and one that has a massive range of hues and colors. Then additionally I'll give it a small ;) library of about 50,000 images and see how it acts. :)
     
  9. joubex thread starter macrumors member

    joubex

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2008
    Location:
    Montreal/ Canada
    #9
    Thanks Tesselator
    Unfortunately I don't have a lot of time to test these softwares and st it's not so easy to have rapid control on your software.
    maybe it would be a good idea to use Bridge instead of Lightroom to browse and catalog and ACR to edit the pictures.
    I will put 3 HD in my Mac Pro: the one from Apple (system and applis) and 2 Caviar Black 1Tb that I want to striped in raid O. Do you think I need st else for a scratch disk ?
    :confused:
    Thanks

    Joubex
    PS: I think also that Diglloyd stop sleeping a long time ago :D
     
  10. Loa macrumors 65816

    Loa

    Joined:
    May 5, 2003
    Location:
    Québec
    #10
    Hello,

    I second Tess's choice of Bridge+PS+ACR. I barely use anything else these days.

    With 6GB of RAM, you're probably going to hit your scratch disk if you have any decent number of layers to your images when you edit.

    I just installed my 8GB today (in my quad) and I'm eager to see how often PS will want more.

    Loa
     
  11. joubex thread starter macrumors member

    joubex

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2008
    Location:
    Montreal/ Canada
    #11
    Hi Loa
    let me know if you find a significant difference w photoshop w 8 Gb

    Thanks for your help

    joubex
     
  12. Loa macrumors 65816

    Loa

    Joined:
    May 5, 2003
    Location:
    Québec
    #12
    Well I'm upgrading from the basic 3GB to 8GB, so I will see a difference.

    The problem with comparing PS scratch useage between different users is, well, the useage.

    You're using 21MPx files, and I'm using 12MPx files. But I think the main difference will come form the number/complexity of layers... Friend of mine (graphic artist) uses very small document sizes, but can have upwards of 100 layers in some documents! I rarely go above 30.

    You'll be the best judge: if you see PS using the scratch, get that last 2GB of ram.

    Loa
     
  13. eXan macrumors 601

    eXan

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    Jan 10, 2005
    Location:
    Russia
    #13
    Photoshop for Mac can't use more than 4 GB RAM, as its still 32 bit.
     
  14. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem

    GoCubsGo

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2005
    #14
    Do you really use all of those? It seems highly unproductive to me.
    It amazes me that people don't realize this.

    My rec: Raw Photo Processor. It is free (and shouldn't be if you ask me).
     
  15. akdj macrumors 65816

    akdj

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Alaska
    #15
    So sad that I am such a sheep:)

    PS/Bridge and I am trying to dabble more in Aperture.

    I am going to test some of these this winter:) Too busy editing this summer with weddings 3 days a week....but....Winter always gets here quick. Thanks for the info Mr. Tesselator.... And more ways to spend some money!

    JH
     
  16. Tesselator macrumors 601

    Tesselator

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2008
    Location:
    Japan
    #16
    PS is still a 32bit app so it can only address 3GB or RAM. If the files you work on are larger than that then it will hit the cache. I just tried it the other day and that was a 32-bit 24 MP image with 24 full raster layers and about 50 history events. :) So basically you could potentially work on something like 12 16-bit images with 2 to 4 layers each - all opened at the same time. :D Basically, it's never going to hit the cache. :D More than 3GB of RAM can be used for other things tho. I'm not 100% sure of what exactly tho. Undos and so forth I guess. But as I edit a single image for a long time I notice 5 to 8 gigs being used by PS. With less RAM than I have (12GB) I guess you just won't be able to set the undos ("History States") quite as high is all. Mine is set to 500. :D

    Bridge is good. CS4 is very fast. I recently went over all the differences between Bridge and LR and there were two minor differences ONLY. One was LR had "virtual copies" and Bridge didn't. But ACR can use both multiple snapshots that are kept inclusive with the image file (or paired in the XMP) and also presets which are globally available. In PS CS4 ACR will also let you open your images as Smart Objects which is awesome! So anyway, I can't see any benefit to LR's virtual copies at all. I can't remember what the other thing was but I think it was a minor option in the SlideShow facilities. Besides those the Bridge (the PS CS4) suite has everything LR has. Everything!

    Here are some of my photographs just for fun:
    As you can see, I'm not very good but that doesn't stop me from having a bunch of fun trying! :)


    Huh?? Why would it be unproductive to know a lot of apps? I think it's just the opposite. Knowing them well I can go to a certain app for a particular feature or workflow. Someone who doesn't know sits there and says: Ho-hum, I wish I had this or that feature in my app.
     
  17. TK2K macrumors 6502

    TK2K

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2006
    #17
    A lot depends on the camera files, rebel XT fine on my MBP, but 5Dmark2 files are just too complex and big for 2gb of ram and a 2.4ghz cpu
     
  18. Loa macrumors 65816

    Loa

    Joined:
    May 5, 2003
    Location:
    Québec
    #18
    Wow: it amazes me that you guys think that everybody that buys more than 3GB of RAM for PS are all wrong... As Tess said in many words: Mac OS X will use the extra RAM to prevent PS from going to the slower scratch disk. So while you're technically true, in practice you're not: Mac OS X will compensate for PS's limitations. Thus, having more than 3 GB of RAM is a very useful thing with PS.

    Depends a lot more on the number of layers and some PS settings.

    Loa
     
  19. TK2K macrumors 6502

    TK2K

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2006
    #19
    right, but the OS can use the other ram. 4extra for OS is a bit extreme but honestly six is not unreasonable, photoshop will have up to 4, while the rest of hte computer can use the other 2
     
  20. Jlitespeed macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2009
    #20
    I'm currently using Adobe CS4 and Adobe Bridge. I just started using Lightroom with Kevin Kubtoa's Raw Lightroom V2 workflow system. I just need more time with software but KK's workflow does make it easier to use.

    JT


     
  21. Loa macrumors 65816

    Loa

    Joined:
    May 5, 2003
    Location:
    Québec
    #21
    Take a quick look to the graphs here, particularly the "real-world" second graph (below the 4 grouped up ones).

    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=736539

    More ram, even above the 3GB PS4 limit, is always better. Even from 6GB to 8GB.

    Loa
     
  22. Tesselator macrumors 601

    Tesselator

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2008
    Location:
    Japan
    #22
    Yep! For photography in PS I would want as a bare minimum 8GB. Hopefully 12 or 16 GB. PS can't use more that about 3GB for images & layers (per image document I think??) or it goes to scratch (always!) but history states, cache levels, clipboard, and etc. I think can make use of as much RAM as you have. :)

    Happiness is oodles and oodles of lovely RAM. :)
     
  23. parakiet macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2008
    #23
    at the moment i'm favoring the qaud with 8 gig and not the basic octo with 12 or 16 gig

    but in the end.. that's only for large format scans
     
  24. akdj macrumors 65816

    akdj

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2008
    Location:
    Alaska
    #24
    "A lot depends on the camera files, rebel XT fine on my MBP, but 5Dmark2 files are just too complex and big for 2gb of ram and a 2.4ghz cpu"

    They are massive, especially Large RAW/Lg Jpeg. But I do a bit of simple field editing on my (ancient) MBP 2.2/4g RAM. Still able to drop some pics in and do several useful layers and field edits, if absolutely necessary. Home rig is much more enjoyable though, the Mac Pro 3.0x8 with 14g RAM! I am still using CS3 for After Effects, CS4 for PS. Huge difference, I cannot wait to add the video side of the new Creative suite. I understand it is still 32bit, but it sure seems to me it is using much more or my RAM and processing power before hitting scratch. As others mentioned, with several files open and a half dozen layers in each is not uncommon....and trying to integrate between PS and FCP for video production....with both programs open. I think, again, as someone else mentioned....so many of the speed improvements in CS4 seem attributable to better relationship with the OS. OR, the other way around, OSX has itself integrated better with the creative software.

    Great shots Tess. Phenomenal B&W and the smoke looks awesome! Are you shooting with the new Sony (you mentioned 24mp at one point I think) or MF? I just, literally, just picked up my 5D mk2. First FF camera since 35mm. I have been shooting with the XXD family from the 10d-40d. Instead of the 50d upgrade, I decided to save for the 5D as a redundancy to our HVX-200a video cams. Perfect for a background wide shot and low light weddings:)

    Thanks as well for the links, I'm always up for trying new image editing software. As you say, kinda like Christmas!!!!

    J
     
  25. Timmahman macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2009
    Location:
    Virginia, USA
    #25
    I think ANY Mac Pro would give good photo performance with a good video card and enough ram.
    My dual 1.42ghz Power Mac G4 provides enough eumpth to keep me happy.
    If you got extra ram laying around, just use it, having an extra gb here and there wont hurt at all :D
    I havent ever used lightroom, but I do use Aperture 2 on my macbook and my G4 and really like it! :apple:
     

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