Which Configuration for HD movie rendering and photo editing?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Densi, Oct 11, 2012.

  1. Densi macrumors member

    Sep 20, 2012

    I´m doing HD movie editing with iMovie (going to switch to FCPX) and photo editing with Aperture/Photoshop.

    I´m going to purchase an iMac (of course waiting for the new one too), but I´m completly clueless :rolleyes: which one would suit my needs best.

    Looking to the current models, is it processor (i5 or i7) or graphics or RAM?

    What´s the time difference between the current low end model and the current high end model to render a 10 minutes HD movie?

    I´m not even semi-professional, but I´d like to understand it, before I make a decision.

    Thanks and regards from Germany,
  2. CASLondon macrumors 6502a

    Apr 18, 2011
    Generally speaking, the CPU (speed, number of cores) is directly related to render times on movies, effects, etc.


    Adobe CSS 6 now makes use of GPU more effectively as well. And RAM is definitely a limiting factor on applications like Photoshop.

    So both are relevant, and the more the better. But RAM doesn't figure into your buying decision, buy the minimum option from Apple as you should do your ram upgrades third party yourself, I just did 16G in my MBP for about 60 British Pounds.

    Another issue is media file read/write speeds. USB 3 or Thunderbolt external storage, with your app/system

    Another issue is screen size, most video editors work with either 2 small monitors or one large one, because of the source/record windows plus timeline/tracks. You might find it worth going 27".

    I guess all of this to say that if you are going iMac, go as large and high spec as possible, as its not an easy system to upgrade.

    Some references for you to explore further, dig into the articles



  3. chevalier433 macrumors 6502a


    Mar 30, 2011
    In what format you shoot?
  4. fa8362 macrumors 65816

    Jul 7, 2008
    Get the base model. If you currently use iMovie, are not even semi-pro, and know nothing, the base is already far more than you need. There's no sense wasting money on power you won't be using anytime soon. Save your money.

    Photoshop and Aperture are RAM intensive and RAM is cheap. You can get 16 GB for $80. You'll likely rarely use all of that RAM, but it's currently very cheap. Don't buy RAM from Apple. Way too expensive. Buy from Crucial.
  5. Densi thread starter macrumors member

    Sep 20, 2012

    I guess you are right. Will 16 GB of RAM be enough? Cause I´m going to buy the high end 21.5" I have to buy it from apple with 16 GB max.
  6. Peace macrumors Core


    Apr 1, 2005
    Space--The ONLY Frontier
    If you're doing PS and HD rendering I would go with the high end 27 in. model with 2GB Vram.

    Provided you can afford it. It will be much better.

    The 27" also allows you to upgrade/replace the RAM without tearing the iMac apart.

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