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New mac recommendations


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#1 folivier1

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Posted 01 April 2017 - 07:37 AM

I have a 2013 Macbook Pro, 2.6GHz it, 8GB ram, 256GB SSD, Retina 1GB.  I'm an advanced hobbyist and use LightRoom 5 to adjust and convert Raw files from my Oly Em1 and Sony RX100-2.  I find my current Macbook adequate, not blazingly fast but fast enough for now.  Don't do video but may do some very light processing in the future.

I'm ready to buy a desktop and wondering if a Mac Mini or an iMac would be best?  and what configuration, processor, Ram, etc.? 

Also is it worth it to buy the 5K Retina version or the standard display?

I plan to use the desktop to also serve as a movie and music server.

Another question is it better to buy a used earlier generation high end iMac or a new base iMac?

I'm NOT looking for the fastest, bestest, screaming machine out there.  Just one that will be a bit faster than my current Macbook.  So what would be the minimum configuration you suggest?



#2 sunnyboy010101

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Posted 01 April 2017 - 08:15 AM

I love my macbook pro (2012 vintage), but I would not spend my money on a mac these days. Frankly, I think apple has abandoned the desktop - no real new models in years, no innovation, and no real upgrades to OSX. In fact, from all appearances they seem to have abandoned OSX in favor of IOS.

 

Why pay a premium for out-of-date hardware and an OS that looks to be abandoned? The mac mini is (was) a great machine, but terribly underpowered. They have not really improved it in ages either.

 

It's a personal choice, but I'd never, ever buy an "all-in-one" machine of any flavor (mac or pc). My daughter had an imac and the HD started to go out of warranty of course. There was quite simply NO REPAIR offered by apple at all. She sold it to a tinkerer and bought a mac mini, but it is horribly underpowered for any real photo / video work.

 

Unfortunately I don't have a good recommendation as to what to get. I still use my macbook pro for some things, but have moved all my photo processing to Lightroom on a home-built PC running windows 7. (and I won't upgrade that OS either). The bonus for purchased Lightroom is it came with both PC and Mac versions on the disk, and they're both excellent.

 

I would absolutely ***LOVE*** for apple to release a proper upgrade to their pc line - preferably a great macbook pro, but a powerful slim one would be nice too. But I won't open my wallet for the stuff they're offering now.

 

Another great bonus is google made their lightroom add-ons free. I'm using the PC version but I'm pretty sure it comes in mac as well.

 

Of course these are all personal opinions.



#3 onokai

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Posted 01 April 2017 - 01:21 PM

I got a new MacBook-pro in January-the 13inch for travel and uploading photos to.

my older one was a 2009

I added all the memory and ram they offered and it  fast-small and works great.

I am a Mac person-with a mini I-pad as well and the larger desktop model a few years old.

This new one is light and thin and small.


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#4 cneal

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Posted 02 April 2017 - 12:28 PM

I still love my late 2015 27 inch iMac. Far better OS and software than anything experienced on the Windows side. I use and iPad awat from home and you just can't beat the combination.



#5 TimG

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Posted 02 April 2017 - 10:37 PM

I've had a 27" iMac since 2013 and it has been superb. I've got a 3TB fusion drive in it and 16GB of RAM; I run LR and PS and have a photo catalogue in LR of about 40,000 images. It runs flawlessly and I wouldn't hesitate to buy the system again. No problems with the OS and the whole setup gives no hint at all that it's 4 years old.

If I'm traveling I've got a 13" MacBook Pro but, of late have started leaving that at home if I only need it for photo backup. - and have a 1TB Nexto system which, so far, has worked really well. It saves a bit of weight and space when flying.

I guess a new iMac from Apple would be nice - but no complaints at all on the current one!

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#6 folivier1

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Posted 03 April 2017 - 06:59 AM

Ok, so my much better (and smarter) half has approved me to buy a new iMac!

I'm thinking of getting a 21.5" with 16GB ram, 3.1GHz processor, but not sure about which hard drive to get.  I have 256GB SSD on my Macbook and like the speed so thinking about getting that for the iMac.  Not familiar with the Fusion drives, can you specify which data gets put on the flash memory?  And any way to know how large that flash memory is?  I might just get either the 256GB or 512GB SSD drive and use an external drive for storing pictures, videos, etc.



#7 TimG

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Posted 03 April 2017 - 12:28 PM

Yay! Excellent news. Any chance you can tease it out to the 27" screen....... ??? They really are fabulous.

 

No clue on the Fusion drive/flash memory thing. Sorry. As I said, I've got a 3TB one and have 3 additional 3TB drives in a  RAID system tied to the iMac. So I always have 4 copies of my data. All of that zips along perfectly with no noticeable lags even with complex edits. 


Tim
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Nikon D800, Nikkors 105mm and 16-35mm, Sigma 15mmFE - Subal housing

http://www.timsimages.uk
Latest images: http://www.shutterst...lery_id=1940957


#8 folivier1

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Posted 03 April 2017 - 12:49 PM

Just ordered a 27" iMac from BHphoto with 8GB ram, 256 GB SSD.  Should be here in 3 days!



#9 TimG

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Posted 03 April 2017 - 09:58 PM

Go you!  :dancing:

 

Good call!


Tim
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Nikon D800, Nikkors 105mm and 16-35mm, Sigma 15mmFE - Subal housing

http://www.timsimages.uk
Latest images: http://www.shutterst...lery_id=1940957


#10 Vondo

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Posted 04 April 2017 - 04:38 AM

On the fusion drive, you cannot specify which data is kept on the SSD and which is migrated off to the spinning disk. This is up to the OS to do. However, you can pretty safely assume that your Lightroom catalog is going to be on the SSD along with the OS parts you use regularly.

 

How much SSD should be in the specs. For my 2012 Mac mini (last quad-core) , it's 128 GB. I really like it.



#11 garyyoss

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Posted 04 April 2017 - 05:34 PM

Hoping your going to upgrade your RAM to 32gb as well as using an external hard drive as 256gb won't get you very far.

OWC www.macsales.com is an excellent resource for all things Mac.


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#12 Burtooked

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Posted 26 April 2017 - 01:16 PM

I also use "27 iMac and absolutely happy with it.