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New 2012 iMacs for editing


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As of tonight, the new iMacs are finally officially available for ordering from the Apple store. The maximum configuration looks something like this:

[list]
[*]3.4GHz Quad-core Intel Core i7, Turbo Boost up to 3.9GHz
[*]32GB 1600MHz DDR3 SDRAM - 4X8GB
[*]768GB Flash Storage
[*]NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680MX 2GB GDDR5
[/list]

All for about $4,500.

 

Opting for 8GB of RAM (to upgrade later) and a 3TB Fusion Drive instead bring the cost down to about $3000. 

 

Also, the Cubix Xpander is an external peripheral that allows for the use of second GPU, and the 10GB/s Thunderbolt connection allows for additional drives to be hooked up externally -- including the 12TB Thunderbolt RAID.

 

This all sounds impressive, but how future-proof (i.e. ready for the next five years) is this setup? I suspect that it can handle 4K ProRes, but what about 4K RAW (and Davinci Resolve)?

 

I have also been communicating with a custom PC builder on eBay who is going to spec out a workstation specifically designed to work optimally with Adobe CS6 and Davinci Resolve 9. I'll post the results of that when I get them.

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I have a feeling the PC will be much cheaper, plus easily upgradable. This is the same decision that made me switch: cost. Sure, Windows isn't very elegant, but if you learn your way around you're rewarded spare couple of grand.

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I suspect that it can handle 4K ProRes, but what about 4K RAW (and Davinci Resolve)?

 

[url="http://www.blackmagicdesign.com/media/4805315/Resolve_Mac_Config_Guide_2012-08-30.pdf"]Resolve_Mac_Config_Guide_2012-08-30.pdf[/url] (12.2 MB)

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LMAO, apple is a joke. I've done a quote for a laptop recently. For smiliar price I can get similar specs laptop with 2x 680M GTX cards.

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LMAO, apple is a joke. I've done a quote for a laptop recently. For smiliar price I can get similar specs laptop with 2x 680M GTX cards.

 

A joke that pays my bills

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I had a question relating to the new iMac too:

 

Does anyone know whether the Nvidia Quadro cards offer any improved performance in resolve over the non-pro cards (GTX) other than clock speed and cores? Does the same apply to mobile(M) cards as well.

On paper the Nvidia 680MX in the new top-end iMac kills the Quadro 4000, which is DaVinci Resolve approved. The 680MX is also cheaper. What's the downside? I know they lock out some 3D developer features, but is their any downside if you are just doing video editing?

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Zach, there is no doubt joke can pay your bills. Similar BMCC vs 5DMK3. 5DMK3 is a joke in video mode in comparison to BMCC and still can pay ones bills. Even VIDEO mode of 5DMK3 is a joke when you put it next to the GH2 (assuming you don't need low light and you're not in extra tight spaces).

 

your joke in video mode: C300 vs BMCC, hell, maybe even C500 vs BMCC

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I had a question relating to the new iMac too:

 

Does anyone know whether the Nvidia Quadro cards offer any improved performance in resolve over the non-pro cards (GTX) other than clock speed and cores? Does the same apply to mobile(M) cards as well.

On paper the Nvidia 680MX in the new top-end iMac kills the Quadro 4000, which is DaVinci Resolve approved. The 680MX is also cheaper. What's the downside? I know they lock out some 3D developer features, but is their any downside if you are just doing video editing?

 

AFAIR Quadro is the past. Reasearch I've done 1-2 years ago showed that regular cards started killing Quadro cards long time ago in performance. If I recall correctly it's not worth buying quadro these days unless something has changed. Should be easy to verify it with google.

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I make a living editing and working on a Mac, but I have also been considering other PC options as I consider an upgrade. I just want a computer that works. Something that I don't have to fiddle with too much. I already spend all of my time doing that with cameras.

 

Here's why this seems like a good fit for someone who edits professionally (like myself):

[list=1]
[*]I have been advised that there is currently no 6-core PC with Thunderbolt that is optimized for grading RAW in Davinci Resolve 9. It's one or the other. Thunderbolt is going to be invaluable as we push past 1080P. It also allows for a computer to be upgraded externally. If I really wanted to, I could add a second graphics card to the iMac.
[*]After purchasing a high quality 27" monitor, the workstations that I have been looking at would cost more than a new iMac (the $3000 option I have mentioned above).
[*]Finally, my 2007 iMac is still valued at around $800. If in five years I can also sell this iMac for 1/3 of the price I bought it for, then that's a strong consideration as well. I doubt that the same could be said about a PC.
[/list]

For 3D or advanced motion graphics, I think that I PC would probably be a better fit. But for my purposes as an editor, this iMac just seems to make more sense than a PC. I just hope that it can handle 4K if that is really where we'll be in five years.

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^ i'm looking at the 27' mac myself, since I already have a MBP and i don't want to buy another Adobe license.

 

I figure I'll get the i7, 1TB fusion, Nvidia 680MX for about $2599. I'll upgrade the ram myself.

 

I can build a PC, and get a ultra-sharp monitor to go with it, but it's still going be around $2000. 

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LMAO, apple is a joke. I've done a quote for a laptop recently. For smiliar price I can get similar specs laptop with 2x 680M GTX cards.

So figure out how much that 2 inch thick machine will be worth used in 1-2 years time and compare it to how much a 1-2 year old Apple laptop sells for, then tell us where's the joke.

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OP: are you looking at the 27" or 21.5"? the 21.5" has soldered in memory..the 27" doesn't

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So figure out how much that 2 inch thick machine will be worth used in 1-2 years time and compare it to how much a 1-2 year old Apple laptop sells for, then tell us where's the joke.

 

Let's say I pay 2k for 2inch thick machine and you pay 3k for apple. You pay 1k extra on top of mine ("brand") I pay 1k less. Hardware depreciation is going to be the same on both. Now let's say in 1 year time hardware goes down 50%. Mine is worth 1k$. Your is worth 2k$. Let's say in 2 years time hardware will go 90% down. Mine is worth 200$ yours is worth 1200$. Can you get more money for yours after 2 years? Yes, 1000$ in this example. Are you effectively getting more money when selling after 2 years? No. You were stuck 1k$ from the beginning with the same performance. What's the outcome? You sold yours for 1000$ more to get unstuck and be even on money with me.

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OP: are you looking at the 27" or 21.5"? the 21.5" has soldered in memory..the 27" doesn't

 

Yes, I saw. Not sure why they are doing that. Definitely the 27".

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I make a living editing and working on a Mac, but I have also been considering other PC options as I consider an upgrade. I just want a computer that works. Something that I don't have to fiddle with too much. I already spend all of my time doing that with cameras.

 

Here's why this seems like a good fit for someone who edits professionally (like myself):

[list=1]
[*]I have been advised that there is currently no 6-core PC with Thunderbolt that is optimized for grading RAW in Davinci Resolve 9. It's one or the other. Thunderbolt is going to be invaluable as we push past 1080P. It also allows for a computer to be upgraded externally. If I really wanted to, I could add a second graphics card to the iMac.
[*]After purchasing a high quality 27" monitor, the workstations that I have been looking at would cost more than a new iMac (the $3000 option I have mentioned above).
[*]Finally, my 2007 iMac is still valued at around $800. If in five years I can also sell this iMac for 1/3 of the price I bought it for, then that's a strong consideration as well. I doubt that the same could be said about a PC.
[/list]

For 3D or advanced motion graphics, I think that I PC would probably be a better fit. But for my purposes as an editor, this iMac just seems to make more sense than a PC. I just hope that it can handle 4K if that is really where we'll be in five years.

ad. 1.

a) Your assumption might be correct so my assumption is: as we push past 1080p (notice it's a pretty vague statement so we'd need to be more precise...ialthough, it's fine for now) we'll have motherboards supporting LGA1366 (6core intel cpus) WITH thunderbolt.

b )  Imac you've listed has got 4 cores. Can you even put 6 core cpu there?? If you can, why they don't give this option?? I want it all written on piece of paper and then signed by your advisor ;).

 

ad. 3. see my previous post.

 

ad. 2. when I have more time I might do comparison on that. It's unlikely to me this is the case.

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I've just started turning my PC into a Hackintosh tonight, as fed up with Windows.

 

It is incredibly easy.

 

I bought a 120GB SSD boot drive for 69 euros which is latest Sandforce controller and 500MB/s read / write.

 

I downloaded my copy of Mountain Lion OS X from the App Store on my Mac and made sure the Install file was located in Applications and that I had an SD card formatted to HFS in my USB port.

 

I went here [url="http://www.macbreaker.com/2012/02/how-to-update-mac-os-x-lion-on-your-pc.html"]http://www.macbreaker.com/2012/02/how-to-update-mac-os-x-lion-on-your-pc.html[/url]

 

And am following the steps.

 

Leaving it for now and will report back when finished.

 

My PC is a Dell XPS 8300 off eBay. These are meant to be well suited as Hackintosh machines. The hardware is all compatible.

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I've just started turning my PC into a Hackintosh tonight, as fed up with Windows.

 

It is incredibly easy.

 

I bought a 120GB SSD boot drive for 69 euros which is latest Sandforce controller and 500MB/s read / write.

 

I downloaded my copy of Mountain Lion OS X from the App Store on my Mac and made sure the Install file was located in Applications and that I had an SD card formatted to HFS in my USB port.

 

I went here [url="http://www.macbreaker.com/2012/02/how-to-update-mac-os-x-lion-on-your-pc.html"]http://www.macbreaker.com/2012/02/how-to-update-mac-os-x-lion-on-your-pc.html[/url]

 

And am following the steps.

 

Leaving it for now and will report back when finished.

 

My PC is a Dell XPS 8300 off eBay. These are meant to be well suited as Hackintosh machines. The hardware is all compatible.

 

Oh my my, 1 more person potentially getting unblinded ;). If u weren't impacted by my talk, nobody on this forum would. There is a hope.

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Im running a hackintosh.  I had £1000 to spend including OSX Lion, mac keyboard and case.  Im running cuda (the cheapest mac compatibale card) and an overclocked i7 2.8, 16gb of ram and ssd main hd.  never look back.  tonymac86 all the way:)

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Tomekk -- If you had $3000 to spend, what CUDA-accelerated video editing workstation and monitor combination would you get?

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I had a question relating to the new iMac too:

 

Does anyone know whether the Nvidia Quadro cards offer any improved performance in resolve over the non-pro cards (GTX) other than clock speed and cores? Does the same apply to mobile(M) cards as well.

On paper the Nvidia 680MX in the new top-end iMac kills the Quadro 4000, which is DaVinci Resolve approved. The 680MX is also cheaper. What's the downside? I know they lock out some 3D developer features, but is their any downside if you are just doing video editing?

 

I don't know about the new GTX cards, but I had sold my GTX 590 with extra change to spare for a Quadro 2000 and the improvement was 4x better.  I don't know much about the marketing schemes from nVidia but I can care less about the gaming performance.  This just last year running CS5.5 I noticed a significant difference in realtime plugin performance for the 590 and the Quadro 2000.  I'm still gunning a Quadro 2000 atm.  My rig is an Intel i7 990x (extreme) with a 24g RAM board on Win8.  No need atm to upgrade as everything is still running smoothly even with R3D files.  Either I didn't do settings right for the GTX 590 or it's simply not meant for editing.  I trust the Quadro's out of experience.  Not sure about the new generation cards in dynamics for gaming and editing, but I prefer a non gaming card tbh, and I'm pretty sure Apple is trying to target a new generation of gamers as well and follow the PC boat.

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I don't know about the new GTX cards, but I had sold my GTX 590 with extra change to spare for a Quadro 2000 and the improvement was 4x better.  I don't know much about the marketing schemes from nVidia but I can care less about the gaming performance.  This just last year running CS5.5 I noticed a significant difference in realtime plugin performance for the 590 and the Quadro 2000.  I'm still gunning a Quadro 2000 atm.  My rig is an Intel i7 990x (extreme) with a 24g RAM board on Win8.  No need atm to upgrade as everything is still running smoothly even with R3D files.  Either I didn't do settings right for the GTX 590 or it's simply not meant for editing.  I trust the Quadro's out of experience.  Not sure about the new generation cards in dynamics for gaming and editing, but I prefer a non gaming card tbh, and I'm pretty sure Apple is trying to target a new generation of gamers as well and follow the PC boat.

 

That's pretty weird. One option is your work needs extreme amounts of RAM. One advantage of quadro vs Geforce is their RAM amount. Can't see how gfx can be slower than quadro in other cases. Rendering depends on CUDA cores and CORE frequency. GFX beats quadro in it by quite a bit. I've done very quick research so here is one of the first links to a CS6 AE benchmark I found:

[url="http://forums.creativecow.net/thread/2/1019643"]http://forums.creativecow.net/thread/2/1019643[/url]

cliffs: gf 680 gtx beats quadro 6000

 

discusscion about quadro vs gf (didn't have time to read it all though, but I'm assuming gfx is better. I would be shocked if not): [url="http://forums.adobe.com/message/4809602"]http://forums.adobe.com/message/4809602[/url]

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WTF? The GTX 680MX is a mobile GPU. These imacs aren't desktops, they are high end laptops on a fancy stand.

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I've heard from Timescapes (Tom Lowe) that 3GB video ram on the card makes a large difference over 1.5GB or 2GB in editing Red Raw with CUDA. Could be a reason some consumer GTX cards are out performed by a Quadro card.

 

Just make sure you get a 3GB card, 580 or better, will be fine for the Blackmagic Cinema Camera. Budget option is a 560 Ti 1.5GB.

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WTF? The GTX 680MX is a mobile GPU. These imacs aren't desktops, they are high end laptops on a fancy stand.

 

True it is all mobile hardware, not desktop like a Mac Pro or a PC.

 

GTX 680MX is still a nice card though and will run Resolve well enough for basic editing and grading with Blackmagic Cinema Camera footage.

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