Just about to place the order for a new mac pro for my photo editing and thought I would just double check the proposed spec here as I have never ordered a mac pro before.
First off it will be running CS3 and LR2.
was thinking as follows:
3.0Ghz 8 Core
8 Gig Ram
2 x 1TB drives in RAID 1 for O/S and apps.
Secondary drive for Time machine
Third drive for CS3 scratch disc.
Standard video card that comes with the base unit. [any reason to upgrade this? - It will be paired with an NEC Wuxi 2690 SpectraView II monitor].
Will be mostly working with 1DSMK3 RAW and TIFF files and stitched 1DSMK3 files and probably next year some Phase 1 files if I can pick up a pre-loved P25+ or 45+ for the right price.
I think the above spec. should be adequete - any thoughts?
Ted's 3rd Rule of Horsepower: "If you can't double it, don't bother..."
This is what I decided, back when I was into building motors, after spending an entire winter blueprinting and porting a Yamaha RD350. I got a measured 15-20% HP increase, (absolutely a miracle, if you know anything about building motors) enough to give me a total thrill for about a month. After that, I was back to being bored.
That said, the same applies to workstations, processor speed and all.
I work with an Apple "partner", configuring workstations for design, video and photo studios, and, in spite of what most photographers "want", what you "need" is covered more than adequately by a baseline MacPro, even with the 2GB RAM. Honestly, we've built quite a few 24" iMacs with fairly baseline specs, and had rave reviews from photographers throwing around huge files, who thought they needed a MacPro.
I just put together 2 MacPro systems for a guy shooting with the Hassey H3D... we put 4GB RAM and hung a simple 2TB RAID off the thing and he's delighted.
Don't get me wrong... there are certainly applications that need "big-block" horsepower. We've built $10K systems for video production, and those bad boys need the speed. I just don't see that desperate need in any photo production application, nor the ROI for that kind of money.
Yes, RAM and hard drives from Apple are stupid expensive, but then there's the warranty issue. If you do get Applecare and have non-Apple parts in the thing, you'll have to yank them before the tech will service it, and will thus remove them from the troubleshooting "matrix". I would, at least, get the RAM and HD's "built" by an approved Apple service guy...
But, my point: whatever system, Apple/Vista, increased processor, amped-up RAM, internal or external RAID, even MacPro or iMac... it will be more than sufficient to do what you need, and probably kick-ass faster than what you're running now.
...now, if you just want to amp-up a system 'cause you have fun doing that, well then... that's a different discussion.