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Author Topic: Is the Apple 27" iMac with Retina 5K Display (Mid 2017) display good enough?  (Read 2466 times)

kuau

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I’m on the fence right now. I am still running a 2009 Mac Pro 6 core loaded with ram, SSD boot drive and a 4 drive raid 0 setup and using a NEC 301W display. Color accuracy is a must because I do all my own printing on my Epson P5000 and older HP Z3200.

I have been looking at the new Apple 27" iMac with Retina 5K Display (Mid 2017)  though I have read after calibrating the 5k display it does not always yield very good results and also not to mention the whole debate on editing photos for print on a 5k display.

On a side project I have been running a Hackintosh build with a I7-7700K 32GB ram, and using my NEC 301W display.  Running a hackintosh as most know can be a challenge and as of 2 days ago my hack for some reason died, won’t boot. Total PITA.. When the system was running it was smoking fast for my needs LR and PS and able to still use my NEC display.  Best of all worlds when it works.

Of course I can pick up a used 2013 Mac Pro “trash can” yet I hate spending $$ on 4 year old technology and who know when Apple will actually start shipping a replacement to the 2013 model. I have no interest in the upcoming iMac Pro for $5k..

Any advice

Steven
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rdonson

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I have a Apple 27" iMac with Retina 5K Display (Mid 2017) and it calibrates nicely with my i1Display Pro.  No problems for me. 
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Ron

David Eichler

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Why not use your NEC as a second monitor with iMac, for critical editing for print?
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Craig Lamson

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Did you have your hack set to auto update?  Perhaps it did the High Serria update and that is what crashed your system. Otherwise I would suspect a hardware problem.  If youhave a recent clone of your Hacks boot drive I would try booting from it to see if its hardware or software. I've had a numbe of hacks and all have been very stable and productive.  Updates are the only issue and recently even those ae non events and go smoothly.  A good backup boot drive is your best insurance. 
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kuau

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I have a Apple 27" iMac with Retina 5K Display (Mid 2017) and it calibrates nicely with my i1Display Pro.  No problems for me.

Ron, I was just concerned about the super high contrast ratio on the iMac display and though there was no way to adjust that. Also I heard working in B&W could be problematic after calibrating the grey scale is not very neautral looking
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kuau

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Did you have your hack set to auto update?  Perhaps it did the High Serria update and that is what crashed your system. Otherwise I would suspect a hardware problem.  If youhave a recent clone of your Hacks boot drive I would try booting from it to see if its hardware or software. I've had a numbe of hacks and all have been very stable and productive.  Updates are the only issue and recently even those ae non events and go smoothly.  A good backup boot drive is your best insurance.

Craig I think I am having some kind of hardware issue, not an issue from an update. I was 10.12.6 with no issues  everything working nicely. My machine died before the release of High Sierra.
Trying to diagnose the problem. On the other hand I would like to keep a working “real” Mac all the time just in case
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Craig Lamson

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Craig I think I am having some kind of hardware issue, not an issue from an update. I was 10.12.6 with no issues  everything working nicely. My machine died before the release of High Sierra.
Trying to diagnose the problem. On the other hand I would like to keep a working “real” Mac all the time just in case

I have a number of real Macs as well.  A really good choice is you can find it for a backup desktop is the 2012 Mac Mini with the i7 quad core.  You can hot rod these with 16gb of ram and add a second drive. I run mine in tandem with my hack and it’s a simple button.push on my NEC to bring it up on the screen.

Best of luck.
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rdonson

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Ron, I was just concerned about the super high contrast ratio on the iMac display and though there was no way to adjust that. Also I heard working in B&W could be problematic after calibrating the grey scale is not very neautral looking

All I can say is that I’ve not had any problems.  I do a fair amount of conversions to B&W and toning as well. I print to my Epson SC P800 and I’ve been happy with the results. I print from Lightroom.  I usually print to Epson, Hahnemuhle, Moab and Red River papers. For B&W prints I favor Baryta and Platine papers.   Perhaps more critical people might have issues but I’m happy.
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Ron

aaronleitz

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I have an NEC PA302W hooked up to my 27" iMac Retina 5K and I have found it impossible to get the iMac screen calibrated to look like the NEC monitor. The colors are off and the contrast is noticeably different. It's easy enough to run them side by side though if you have the desk space.
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digitaldog

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I’m on the fence right now. I am still running a 2009 Mac Pro 6 core loaded with ram, SSD boot drive and a 4 drive raid 0 setup and using a NEC 301W display. Color accuracy is a must because I do all my own printing on my Epson P5000 and older HP Z3200.

I have been looking at the new Apple 27" iMac with Retina 5K Display (Mid 2017)  though I have read after calibrating the 5k display it does not always yield very good results and also not to mention the whole debate on editing photos for print on a 5k display.
There's nothing special about that Apple display and it can't compare to the NEC in terms of calibration accuracy and flexibility.
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Andrew Rodney
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kuau

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Re: Is the Apple 27" iMac with Retina 5K Display (Mid 2017) display good enough?
« Reply #10 on: September 29, 2017, 04:49:43 PM »

There's nothing special about that Apple display and it can't compare to the NEC in terms of calibration accuracy and flexibility.

So what would you suggest then? Purchase a used 2013 Mac Pro or wait for Apple to get there act together which maybe never now. Seems like all there new high end desktops are more geared for video and not so much for photographers any more. I guess they feel that over 99%  of all photos taken today are not being printed and being just viewed on the web so SRGB is all that's needed???

Critical calibration seems a dying trend and lets just make images look the best they can on screen. i.e 5K iMac
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rdonson

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Re: Is the Apple 27" iMac with Retina 5K Display (Mid 2017) display good enough?
« Reply #11 on: September 29, 2017, 05:10:01 PM »

The 27" iMac supports the DCI-P3 colorspace.  If you're into video this may be a boon for you.  Others are going to scream that it's not aRGB. 

http://www.colourspace.xyz/the-new-apple-imac-and-the-dci-p3-colour-gamut/

http://www.astramael.com/

https://blog.conradchavez.com/2015/10/26/a-look-at-the-p3-color-gamut-of-the-imac-display-retina-late-2015/

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Ron

David Eichler

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Re: Is the Apple 27" iMac with Retina 5K Display (Mid 2017) display good enough?
« Reply #12 on: September 29, 2017, 06:41:39 PM »

As far as I can see, there is nothing wrong with using the P3 gamut to edit for print. It is approximately the same size as aRGB and covers most of the same colors. With either gamut, there can be colors that could show in an inkjet print that they cannot show.

On the one hand, it is unfortunate that Apple does not make a computer alternative between the Mini and the Pro that does not include a monitor. On the other, the retina monitor can be useful as a reference for what many viewers might be looking at on the Web these days.

As far as a video editing standard, I wonder how many serious video editors would rely on an iMac for that.
« Last Edit: September 29, 2017, 10:51:30 PM by David Eichler »
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rdonson

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Re: Is the Apple 27" iMac with Retina 5K Display (Mid 2017) display good enough?
« Reply #13 on: September 29, 2017, 08:22:40 PM »

It’s not difficult to add another monitor to an iMac.  I have a second monitor.  It’s just an inexpensive one but handy for PS pallets, browsers, iMessage, etc.
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Ron

Craig Lamson

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Re: Is the Apple 27" iMac with Retina 5K Display (Mid 2017) display good enough?
« Reply #14 on: September 30, 2017, 09:57:13 AM »

It’s not difficult to add another monitor to an iMac.  I have a second monitor.  It’s just an inexpensive one but handy for PS pallets, browsers, iMessage, etc.


It is if you don’t have the room, or like me, don’t want a second monitor.
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digitaldog

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Re: Is the Apple 27" iMac with Retina 5K Display (Mid 2017) display good enough?
« Reply #15 on: September 30, 2017, 10:17:29 AM »

So what would you suggest then? Purchase a used 2013 Mac Pro or wait for Apple to get there act together which maybe never now.
Don't get an iMac or get one and use it's somewhat OK display for palettes or non critical color work.
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Andrew Rodney
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digitaldog

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Re: Is the Apple 27" iMac with Retina 5K Display (Mid 2017) display good enough?
« Reply #16 on: September 30, 2017, 10:18:24 AM »

As far as I can see, there is nothing wrong with using the P3 gamut to edit for print. It is approximately the same size as aRGB and covers most of the same colors. With either gamut, there can be colors that could show in an inkjet print that they cannot show.
Exactly. Not a problem at all per se.
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Andrew Rodney
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elliot_n

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Re: Is the Apple 27" iMac with Retina 5K Display (Mid 2017) display good enough?
« Reply #17 on: September 30, 2017, 11:08:12 AM »

Is there any consensus as to whether a retina display is useful for a print workflow (Epson etc)?

I currently use a 5 year old Eizo CG275 (27-inch, 2560x1440) as my sole display. I am constantly zooming in and out of the image to gauge which details will print. Surely the high resolution of a retina display will render a lot more detail at fit-to-screen view, and therefore reduce the need of this zooming in and out?

I would assume that a retina display would offer a significantly more print-like preview of the image, and yet reading here I've heard many suggest that retina is only good for displaying images on screen (as opposed to print), and that for a print workflow there are only issues (e.g. it's harder to visualise sharpening).

I'm thinking of hanging my Eizo off a Retina iMac (it's currently hooked up to an ageing mac mini). I would use the Eizo for final colour balance, but the iMac for everything else.
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digitaldog

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Re: Is the Apple 27" iMac with Retina 5K Display (Mid 2017) display good enough?
« Reply #18 on: September 30, 2017, 11:15:02 AM »

I would assume that a retina display would offer a significantly more print-like preview of the image, and yet reading here I've heard many suggest that retina is only good for displaying images on screen (as opposed to print), and that for a print workflow there are only issues (e.g. it's harder to visualise sharpening).
A bit better perhaps, WYSIWYG in terms of sharpness and print appearance outside color and tone, most likely not. Examine the resolution of the output versus the display, then you've got all kinds of dithering, paper surface etc to deal with.
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Andrew Rodney
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David Eichler

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Re: Is the Apple 27" iMac with Retina 5K Display (Mid 2017) display good enough?
« Reply #19 on: September 30, 2017, 04:42:16 PM »

Don't get an iMac or get one and use it's somewhat OK display for palettes or non critical color work.

I have come to the conclusion that, overall, as a computer, the current iMac is preferable to the Mac Pro, even if you don't use the iMac's screen at all.
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