nMP for Photoshop CC

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Salient, Oct 25, 2013.

  1. Salient macrumors newbie

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    Oct 25, 2013
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    UK
    #1
    So it's time to upgrade from my 2007 mbp now that I've switched to Adobe's Creative Cloud. Would the new quad Mac Pro be a better option at 3.7ghz for heavy Photoshop than the 6-core at 3.5ghz? Would I get much benefit from the higher spec running CC software?
     
  2. deconstruct60 macrumors 604

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    Mar 10, 2009
    #2
    the two processors have the same top end Turbo mode

    E5 1620 v2 (4 core ) 3.7 - 3.9
    E5 1650 v2 (6 core ) 3.5 - 3.9

    Both with most of the cores deactivated because of low concurrent workload operate at the same speed. Pragmatically, they tend of operate more so in the range in between the two extremes for most diverse workloads. The middle of the respective ranges is 3.8 and 3.7. Not a big difference.

    If you happen to often tap into aspects of Photoshop which can go "wide" and engage as many cores as avaiable then the 6 core will have an edge. If most often in single thread mode then they are probably about the same.

    What would push over the top would be an expectation that you were going to increasing use another program in Adobe's suite that uses lots of cores by default. Or going to engage multiple programs at the same time (e.g., background ingest of photos while foreground editing ).
     
  3. Macsonic macrumors 65816

    Macsonic

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    Sep 6, 2009
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    Earth
    #3
    Hi Salient. I think both the quad 3.7 or hex 3.5 are fine with heavy Photoshop work. As far as I know, Photoshop does not use that much cores and more of memory dependent. Though this Adobe BLOG states with Plugins and filters, Photoshop runs better with MORE cores than higher clock speeds. Aside from CPU speed and memory, there are also other ways to fine tune and optimize Photoshop like a separate scratch disk.
     
  4. thekev macrumors 604

    thekev

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    Aug 5, 2010
    #4
    I would say ram is your best investment there if you deal with large files. It will allow the application to pay very little attention to scratch disks. Depending on how heavy and what kind of disk array, even a mini can often do the job (just limited to 16GB). Considering you're coming from a 2007 macbook pro, anything would be a major upgrade from that. CC is about as resource intensive as CS6, which ran just fine on the 2009 through 2012 mac pros. Even CS3 was slow on those.
     
  5. jordanm86 macrumors regular

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    Oct 21, 2011
    #5
    This sounds like good advice...

    If you increase the ram and increase the amount of RAM that photoshop can use (in the photoshop preferences) you should get good performance.

    OP - What are you deeming to be 'heavy' Photoshop use? I work as a web/print designer so cover everything from working with large scale images and artwork files, to complex vector files with tens of thousands of points, processing images and occasional video editing/animation (across all various CC apps).

    At present I am working on a 2008 Intel Core Duo 2.53Ghz with 8GB RAM. Whilst it occasionally struggles, like thekev said: "anything would be a major upgrade"

    I waited for the Mac Pro announcement and quite frankly, it looks like it would be overkill for anyone other than gamers or those doing lots of video editing.

    After seeing the spec of it against the price, I decided to get a iMac 27" with 512GB SSD, 3.5Ghz i7, 32GB RAM (upgrading myself when I receive it) and the 4GB graphics (which again, the standard would be more than enough for photoshop, I just wanted it for video work).

    I can see the fascination with the Mac Pro - although some deem it as looking like a trash can, I like it - it's a genius, functional design (in terms of cooling/size etc). However, the price after adding a screen, upgrading the RAM and upgrading the SSD, adding applecare it would be around £3600-3700. The iMac spec'd above that I ordered cost under £2895 inc applecare - that's £700-800 that could be spent on a massive external storage system, some networking gear or graphics tablet.
     
  6. thekev macrumors 604

    thekev

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    Aug 5, 2010
    #6
    I think if it wasn't for the lower ram limitation I would definitely say quad mini + NEC or Eizo display depending on local pricing. With really large files if you don't have an SSD as your scratch disk, 32GB is really ideal though. Considering that the OP managed on a 2007 macbook pro until now, I think that solution is still worth considering. I would say the bigger the graphics tablet the better. I could never stand anything below 9x12 as otherwise the mapping makes it too difficult to draw smooth curves. I have a lot of issues with the state of that program overall. It feels like an artifact of the 90s in terms of its mechanics. There are too many overlapping tools that half work, yet so much potential. There are just so many things you could do to modernize a paint program with advancements made in 3d apps and a consolidation of tools into something that makes use of linear color spaces, thus deprecating some of the hacks used today for palatable results from sharpen, dodge, burn, etc. It fills me with rage:mad:. I'm familiar with quite a few algorithms used for these things. If I had the programming skill, I would make my own interpretation of a modern paint program for iOS

    Anyway yeah the imac is a decent contender too. I'm not so big on the screen compared to NEC's implementation, but 32GB of ram is very nice and should allow more headroom for requirements growth.
     
  7. Salient thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Oct 25, 2013
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    UK
    #7
    Thanks for all your replies. I appreciate that a nMP will be overkill for print/web design so I will be keeping an eye on the mini update if that pops up before Dec. I'm all set screen-wise with two ACDs so I'm not thinking iMac. Will just have to see what the BTO prices and 3rd party ram will be for the pro but sounds like the base quad would be a decent platform for a good few years.
     
  8. blackhand1001 macrumors 68030

    blackhand1001

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    Jan 6, 2009
    #8
    If your using a 2007mbp I honestly think you could get a away with a quad core mac mini.
     
  9. jordanm86 macrumors regular

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    Oct 21, 2011
    #9
    What's your issue with the iMac display? I am not a fan of the gloss and whilst the pain of having a built in display makes upgrading a pain, I think it balances out quite nicely for lack of clutter - I get distracted very easily/cannot switch 'off' visual stimuli or noise so having a clean desktop is key... I am using a corner and straight desk combo and sit facing into the corner (white walls, white desk, so I focus :p)

    I am toying with the idea of a second monitor when I get my iMac and whilst I could go for an Eizo or NEC, the physical appearance of the machine not 'matching' is kind of putting me off a bit. If I had a Mac Pro and two third party screens that would be ok as they match, but the thought of an iMac and something other than a thunderbolt display seems a bit... wrong :)
     
  10. mostafiz28 macrumors member

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    Feb 16, 2013
    #10
    Hi Op - Do you do 3d in Photoshop? I use a quad core Mac pro and while rendering something out, the cpu gets maxed out. It kind of slows other programs down i. e. Ai or any other program. I'm a print designer and I use Ps cs6, Ai Cs6 and c4d. Having just 4 cores makes my work difficult while rendering. If you render out 3d text or other stuff for your design, go for a hex. Also, more RAM helps a lot. I wanted to get a Hex in the first place then thought it would be overkill, but now I'm planning to get a w3680 or w3690 because I need that much power. Please keep in mind that you may have to use the nMac pro for three/four or more years and software will become even more demanding. Future proofing isn't a bad idea if you make money using your machine.
     
  11. thekev macrumors 604

    thekev

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    Aug 5, 2010
    #11
    It primarily relates to past experiences across many machines combined to a lesser degree with some of what I've read on here from others. No display is really perfect, and some others do experience problems. In general I've had better luck with those brands as far as uniformity is concerned, and both have combinations of hardware/software that help manage inevitable display drift. With some of the really old imacs, like when the 24" models still existed, discoloration around the top of the display was common after a year or two. Sometimes application names would persist as well permanently "burned in". My other issue is the one you mentioned. I can't stand the reflections, although the new model is supposedly a significant improvement over the old one. In cases where 16GB is enough, thunderbolt peripherals are not used, and top gpu speed isn't critical, I tend to prefer a mini + third party display compared to a 27" imac. The mac pro took another price hike. I think they could have done better on the entry model, but that's typical. Every generation since 2009 has basically been a slight price hike somewhere. The 2012 was a slight exception in that the single socketed model didn't increase in price. The 8 core went away with a 12 core starter at $300 more. I figured it was plausible that they would eventually start at $3k.
     
  12. jordanm86 macrumors regular

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    Oct 21, 2011
    #12
    Yeah I have heard a few quality control issues regarding the LG display in the iMac.

    My ideal scenario would have been to buy a mac pro, but as you say, pricey for what it is and a bit of clutter. With the old mac pro, everyone I know who has/had one, keep it under the desk... it's a bit of a hefty beast, this new one I assume is going to be a desktop thing for everyone and whilst it is pretty, it is just more desk clutter.
     
  13. thekev macrumors 604

    thekev

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    Aug 5, 2010
    #13
    Calling it an LG display isn't exactly accurate. LG makes the panels, but they make panels for a lot of brands. Not every display using one of their panels is created equally. I suspect Apple is going to optimize their own applications for GPGPU computation. With Adobe you never no how long it will take. Their applications have odd synergy, and they rewrite things in chunks. I never cared about the size as it goes below a desk.
     
  14. Cobb macrumors member

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    Nov 8, 2011
    Location:
    London, UK
    #14
    What about the GPU Options? Would PS benefit from upgrading the AMD FirePro D300 to the D500?
     
  15. arbitrage macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2009
    #15
    Everything I've read would say no to that. D300 will be overkill for PS at this point in time. The future may change things I guess. For video or 3D then you would want to upgrade the graphics.

    I'm going with the D300s and either 4 or 6 core (still haven't decided). Memory will be my biggest upgrade and haven't decided on the SSD.
     
  16. PIXELREMIX macrumors newbie

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    Dec 15, 2013
    #16
    I think additional CPU cores matter more to PS than upgrading the FirePro. Anyone knows if PS really can benefit from both GPUs as opposed to only using one GPU?
     
  17. thekev macrumors 604

    thekev

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    Aug 5, 2010
    #17
    First answer no. Second answer would be it's your bank account.
     

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