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Main Photography Discussion
Recommendation for a computer for photo use
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Jan 10, 2017 23:35:21   #
Rjbara (new user)
 
Can someone recommend a computer or laptop for photo editing and storage.
 
Jan 11, 2017 00:05:28   #
jaymatt (a regular here)
 
Mac
Jan 11, 2017 00:53:28   #
robertjerl (a regular here)
 
I got the most powerful gaming computer I could afford and doubled the RAM it came with. Years later it is still doing a good job for me. I don't play games, but the features that made it a gaming computer also work for photo editing and video editing which my wife wants me to learn, I want her to learn it, she is the one who takes videos.
Jan 11, 2017 02:51:07   #
catalint (a regular here)
 
To be honest, I find laptops not so suitable for photo editing. At least not as my main "Dark Room". I only use my laptop when I cant have my tower with me, on travels etc.

I have not tested one of those "Gaming laptops" which supposed to have much better hardware. no doubt gaming hardware is need it in order to have a smooth pc for GFX editing. But I've tested a pretty brand new HP 840 G3 laptop, i7 CPU, 16GB RAM, SSD drive, still it was not as smooth as my gaming tower is. And this is now a 4 year old beast with Intel i5, 24GB ram, SSD and 2GB Nvidia GeForce GTX 770. No laptop I've had in my hands could match the speed of my workflow, or the amount of threads the PC has to do.
Jan 11, 2017 05:57:09   #
Cdouthitt (a regular here)
 
15" mbp with ssd hd, 16gb ram, lg 34" ultra wide display, and a couple of external drives. This has been my typical setup for the last several years. As a graphic designer by day, it's more than enough. I haven't had a tower machine for more than 12 years now.
Jan 11, 2017 06:19:05   #
dcampbell52 (a regular here)
 
Rjbara wrote:
Can someone recommend a computer or laptop for photo editing and storage.


I found that, while convenient, a laptop just doesn't have the storage or horsepower to be a good processing computer for images. I do have a fairly good I5 processor on a decent laptop with a large hard drive and maxed out on memory, but I use it for traveling and I will only process a few of my shots on it. It is basically for uploading images to my cloud for safety ( I download the cards from my camera to a 4tb USB external hard drive using the laptop while on trips. Then I upload all of the images from that shoot to my cloud at home. This gives me a (theoretical) safe backup away from my travels and a copy on my external that is with me.
Once I return from my trip, I process all of my photos for further use. If the situation warrants, I can process a few in the laptop but I find it more convenient to do everything on my big system at home.
 
Jan 11, 2017 06:37:35   #
MikeMcK (a regular here)
 
I use a relatively new Dell laptop with a I7 processor. I have a 24" Dell monitor attached through a Dell docking station. I also use a full keyboard and mouse. The laptop is simply a processor. I have 16 MB of RAM. This setup is perfect for me, doesn''t take up a lot of room. Good luck. I do luck Mac's, but they are just too expensive for me on Social Security.
Jan 11, 2017 06:47:30   #
BJW
 
Once you try a Mac, you'll never go back.

MacBook Pro.
16 Meg of RAM
1Tb Hard Drive.

Add a Mac Thunderbolt monitor
Couple of WD or Seagate external Hard Drives.

Good to go.
Jan 11, 2017 06:58:28   #
Gene51 (a regular here)
 
Rjbara wrote:
Can someone recommend a computer or laptop for photo editing and storage.


Budget? How much storage do you need? What applications do you intend to run? (photo and non-photo related).

Macs are ok, but they are general purpose computers that can be used for photo editing with a few compromises. They are expensive for what you get.

PCs are cheaper and you have more customization options, so it is possible to get a more highly focused computer dedicated to photo editing. Your choice may very well somewhere in the middle. There is no automatic solution in either platform.
Jan 11, 2017 07:04:30   #
billnikon (a regular here)
 
Rjbara wrote:
Can someone recommend a computer or laptop for photo editing and storage.


I use a Lenovo with a Toshiba external hard drive.
Jan 11, 2017 07:37:11   #
cheineck (a regular here)
 
BJW wrote:
Once you try a Mac, you'll never go back.

MacBook Pro.
16 Meg of RAM
1Tb Hard Drive.

Add a Mac Thunderbolt monitor
Couple of WD or Seagate external Hard Drives.

Good to go.


 
Jan 11, 2017 07:52:48   #
whitewolfowner (a regular here)
 
I would get a mac computer. If budget is a factor, get a used 2009-2012 mac pro. The monitor is important too and the best lower priced one's out there that work well for photography is the Dell U2515H; the same models come in different sizes; this one is 25". The desk top's are a lot easier to use in my opinion but many are happy with a lap top. If you go the lap top route, get the mac book pro with the Retina display and load it up too. The new model is not liked by many; so you can save some money by getting the older one (without the silly bar on it). The lap top will cost a lot more than a used mac pro and the used mac pro is a lot more versatile too for doing other things but can't go everywhere with you like the lap top can.
Jan 11, 2017 07:53:15   #
MikeMcK (a regular here)
 
[quote=BJW]Once you try a Mac, you'll never go back.

I disagree. I had an Apple laptop for about 3 months, didn't like it, sold it. Not everyone likes Apples or the price they charge
Jan 11, 2017 07:56:16   #
Alpix
 
Spent almost 2k building a top PC a few years ago (but still not happy with video rendering performance).
Bought an iMac last year and never looked back. 27" 5k monitor alone is worth the cost.
Upgraded to 32GB RAM (but was it really worth it?) and added a 4TB Thunderbolt RAID drive.
The main thing for me working in media is having a big clear screen.
iMAC is the best, but comes at a cost. Whats the budget?
Jan 11, 2017 08:09:52   #
Alpix
 
I quite understand MikeMck's reply, it took me a while to get used to apple after using (and still) using PC.

If you take into account the cost of a decent 4k monitor, apple is not so expensive IMO.
I am not so keen on my Windows 10 system now anyway (on my Lenova Yoga laptop).
I don't think you will beat the 5k monitor on an iMac for photography. The 4TB Thunderbolt RAID drive is very fast and safe (though I even keep that backed up... twice). The pictures are worth more than the hardware.
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