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Author Topic: Power Users: MAC or PC?  (Read 5508 times)

JimGoshorn

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Re: Power Users: MAC or PC?
« Reply #40 on: June 06, 2018, 12:02:21 PM »

I got the code extended keyboard with the clear switches. Even though the clear switches offer high pressure resistance, after all the years of working with Apple keyboards with the chiclets, I still bottom out the keys.

Love it!

Jim
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Brad P

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Re: Power Users: MAC or PC?
« Reply #41 on: June 06, 2018, 08:46:44 PM »

OK, final build attached.  Just placed the order.  I added a media card as shown too. Cool.  No more dangling card readers and it may even be a lot faster than my old USB port and device. 

I didnít order Windows 10 Pro. It appears that can be downloaded for free now from Microsoft and is fully operational without entering a product key, except you canít change the desktop background and screensaver from the defaults using their preset options and there may be an annoying message that a product key is still needed.  Iíll probably go ahead and register later anyway. 

Looked up the specs on this system vs a new iMac Pro.  Iím pretty confident this will at least keep up with a $5700 version, probably beat it in performance actually for most tasks.  And even then, I can overclock it a bit for free if desired.  Of course, the iMac Pro comes at that price with a nice screen too, but not a $2200 value one.  Iíd rather keep my 31Ē NEC, and with this setup I can upgrade my machine in the future in any number of directions, even with the currently very pricey i9 chips in a few years when the prices fall.  Anyway, Iím feeling good about it for now. 
« Last Edit: June 07, 2018, 03:50:42 AM by Brad Paulson »
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Brad P

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Re: Power Users: MAC or PC?
« Reply #42 on: June 06, 2018, 08:57:54 PM »

Here is a good sequence of videos in case anyone is interested.  Iíve only seen the second which gave me enough comfort to build myself.  Off to finish watching the third now ... and Iím not sure I want to watch the first. 

Choosing parts
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=lMC_xzqJxo4

Assembling parts
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=baDsVFyXqyY

Booting up
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=LbpqkiaO7q4
« Last Edit: June 07, 2018, 02:09:31 AM by Brad Paulson »
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smahn

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Re: Power Users: MAC or PC?
« Reply #43 on: June 07, 2018, 02:06:14 PM »

Looks like a dream build.
Keep us posted on how assembly goes, and of course use and performance.
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nemophoto

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Re: Power Users: MAC or PC?
« Reply #44 on: June 07, 2018, 09:33:59 PM »

Wow. An excellent system you've put together with lots of power and longevity. This is why I've always preferred to use PCs -- the ability to customize a system the way I want, for my needs. Plus, I'm geeky, so there's a sense of satisfaction every time I put together a new system (about every 4-yrs). In the intervening time, I can replace components as I see the need. I think you'll be thrilled with your result. Probably the only downside I've found over the years (and I've been building my own computers since about 1990 -- if you don't count a Timex-Sinclair back in 1982!) is that you have to be your own tech support at times.

Brad P

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Re: Power Users: MAC or PC?
« Reply #45 on: June 07, 2018, 11:58:08 PM »

Since this is my first ground up build, thatís good to hear from you.  I did up the power supply this AM to 1000W ó almost 2x overkill from what I need now.  But thanks to that and the chipset, just about everything should be nearly as fast as the best off the shelf machines now and very upgradeable.  Mac Pros pre trash can used to be much more like PCs that way.

Will post some benchmarks after I get it running.  Looking forward to seeing how my next big stack in Zerene Stacker fares.  That will be my ultimate benchmark along with a few plugins. 
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nemophoto

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Re: Power Users: MAC or PC?
« Reply #46 on: June 08, 2018, 09:17:51 AM »

Since this is my first ground up build, thatís good to hear from you.  I did up the power supply this AM to 1000W ó almost 2x overkill from what I need now.  But thanks to that and the chipset, just about everything should be nearly as fast as the best off the shelf machines now and very upgradeable.  Mac Pros pre trash can used to be much more like PCs that way.

Good that you upgraded your PSU. Thatís one of the most overlooked component upgrades. An earlier build, I was experiencing erratic performance. I finally suspected the PSU. I changed it from 750watts to 1000 and issues were ďmagicallyĒ resolved.

The pre trash can Macs can be upgraded, but only to a point. My wife, for instance, has an older Mac Pro (sheís a graphic designer) and I upgraded her GPU with an older AMD Radeon board I had. No really issues, but I could not have just suddenly switched to an nVidia board since there would not have been the drivers available. Also, I routinely will swap out the CPU after a couple years (though that creates havoc sometimes as Windows and other programs suddenly see my computer as being ďnewĒ - PITA). As far as Iíve been able to tell on my wifeís Mac, thatís not an option.

Iíll be curious to hear the benchmarks. Iím sure they will be smoking!

Brad P

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Re: Power Users: MAC or PC?
« Reply #47 on: June 17, 2018, 03:43:29 AM »

OK.  After a 12 hour day, I have assembled all the parts, run the bios and installed windows.  No errors along the way.  I have a few more drivers to install and files to transfer.

I havenít run benchmarking software for years, but if there is a free one let me know what youíd like to see. 

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kers

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Re: Power Users: MAC or PC?
« Reply #48 on: June 17, 2018, 11:28:38 AM »

OK, final build attached.  Just placed the order. 


It seems like a very good system indeed.
I am also making a system and would like to change a few things...

i would opt for the more expensive 7900X processor since it has more PCI lanes.  44 vs 28
Because at the moment the PCI interface is getting more and more used and important being the fastest interface.
The GPU already uses 16 lanes. M.2 interface uses 4 lanes ( i would have chosen the 2TB samsung 970 because of that).
That leaves you with 8 lanes left for all that is coming and external connections.
Good thing is you can always buy a new processor later on....
Anyway i am still on an old mac pro being much ( 3-4x) slower, but it is a very solid workhorse...
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smahn

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Re: Power Users: MAC or PC?
« Reply #49 on: June 17, 2018, 12:25:06 PM »

My foray into the world of PCs has been pretty unsuccessful.
(Using a rather affordable, but current and decently equipped for speed, Alienware as a tester kit.)
My biggest fear was about having to remap my muscle memory for keyboard shortcuts, but I haven't been able to get that far.

Hours/days spent installing programs, actions, plugins, presets, extensions. Many not working (ie presets called by actions).

Currently trying to navigate thru a recurrent BSOD/Recovery screen.

This all takes tripple time to a person erstwhile unfamiliar with Windows, especially compared to just buying another Mac and Migrating everything, which will work as should in a couple of hours.

So as I try to get work done now, I can spend some hours trying to get the PC functional, or grind it out on my 2012 Mac. Whatever slowness the old Mac offers is more than compensated for by ease of use.

The kicker is, even using a speedy 8th gen 6 core i7 8700K chip, my machine benchmarks slower than a 2017 iMac using the 7th gen 4 core chip.

None of which is to say Mac is better than PC, simply that the transition from one platform to another has been fraught. Very fraught.

Pretty ticked at Apple for their Mac neglect. Still, the second they upgrade I'm probably in for another bite of the Apple.
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smahn

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Re: Power Users: MAC or PC?
« Reply #50 on: June 17, 2018, 12:49:06 PM »


I havenít run benchmarking software for years, but if there is a free one let me know what youíd like to see.

There may be better, but here's one I know:
https://browser.geekbench.com/

I don't remember the exact score I hit on single thread (where most of Photoshop lives), something around 5300k, I think.

Here are Mac Scores:

https://browser.geekbench.com/mac-benchmarks/

And some people are getting in the high 9000's with my chip. Must be some death defying overclocking going on:

https://browser.geekbench.com/v4/cpu/singlecore
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kers

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Re: Power Users: MAC or PC?
« Reply #51 on: June 17, 2018, 02:26:49 PM »

I agree the Mac has made it easy just to be focussed on the actual work and less on maintaining a computer.

On the other hand as you say they have neglected the Macpro since 2012 - i see the 2013 macpro more and more sold secondhand at the moment.
Maybe those people bought a iMac pro for video.
The 2012 Macpro lives so long because you can upgrade the GPU, the Ram, the CPU, USB3.1 and put 4 harddisks in it. Even today you can add the latest M.2 memory in it.
Still the motherboard etc has its limitations and is not up to date.
The problem with Apple is they always want to reinvent the wheel and may come up with a square one because they think it is better- like with the 2013 macpro...
A new modular mac pro is said to arrive in 2019- maybe it will be december 2019 like with the mac pro dec 2013...
I do not know if i can wait that long and -at the same time- do not want to spend money on old technology.
My camera went from 12 tot 46MP during the last 6 years and now the computer slows me down.
That said a macpro 2019 may be something to wait for- it may have some new technology in it like perhaps pci 4.0 or 5.0...


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Cornfield

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Re: Power Users: MAC or PC?
« Reply #52 on: June 17, 2018, 04:40:55 PM »

I have a similar build from last year and am very happy with the performance.  The only addition I would make to your spec is to add another 8Tb drive and have both drives in raid 1 configuration or just use the Windows 10 Storage Space to have a mirror copy.
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Brad P

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Re: Power Users: MAC or PC?
« Reply #53 on: June 17, 2018, 04:56:59 PM »

Here are the geekbench scores. Now to check out those other links to see how it compares. I probably will run it against my souped up nearly to the max early 2009 Mac Pro just to see the difference.

Single Core: 5,102
Multi Core: 28,548
OpenCL score: 148,546

The real proof of the pudding will be later today after I migrate some old pics and use PS & Zerene Stacker.  Iíll wait to see how that looks before deliving into over clocking.  It is over clock ready. 

And yeah, I will someday add more storage and mirror the drives using that Windows mirroring capability that Iím forgetting the name of. B
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Brad P

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Re: Power Users: MAC or PC?
« Reply #54 on: June 17, 2018, 05:15:06 PM »

Just roughly checked and the unoverclocked performance right now at $3500 is roughly comparable to a $5800 iMac pro, except that of course has the monitor (but doesnít have my NEC), and I can upgrade literally every component for many years.  So about what I expected.

Now off to learn windows again, migrate files and get CC set up. 
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kers

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Re: Power Users: MAC or PC?
« Reply #55 on: June 17, 2018, 06:40:52 PM »

Just roughly checked and the unoverclocked performance right now at $3500 is roughly comparable to a $5800 iMac pro, except that of course has the monitor (but doesnít have my NEC), and I can upgrade literally every component for many years.  So about what I expected.

Now off to learn windows again, migrate files and get CC set up.

The Imac Pro has more pci lanes ( 48) addressed through use of 4 thunderbolt3 ports and a 1000$ monitor, a xeon with ECC memory and it works out of the box .
So in the end it is not that much more expensive - if you do Finalcut pro it is unbeatable.
But i fully understand your switch. I have the same thoughts but would then try a hackingtosh.
Really like OSX and am working with it since 20 years...

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Frodo

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Re: Power Users: MAC or PC?
« Reply #56 on: June 17, 2018, 07:14:47 PM »

I have a gen 1 (?) i7 860 running 8GB RAM in an 8 year old machine.  I have moved from a 12MP to a 50MP camera in that time.  But having just bought a Canon 5DsR, NEC PA242W and Epson P600 in the last year, I am on a budget.
My conclusions, thanks to the great resources provided by Puget Systems:
- i7 8700 vs 8700K as not much gained by overclocking
- 2 x Lenovo 8 GB DDR4 2400 MHz UDIMM RAM as Lightroom rarely uses more - and RAM is expensive, but want future options.
- Gigabyte H370M D3H mATX motherboard.
- Although my monitor does 30 bit colour, LR on Windows does not, so simply relying on integrated graphics
- 250GB WD Green SSD
- 4 TB internal hard disk - exploring going bigger.  I run USB 3.0 external hard drives at the moment because of the funny noises my PC makes from time to time!  I do manual back-ups on portable hard drives and store offsite.  I am comfortable with back-up system.

Without a graphics card I am limited to HDMI andDVI ports.

This comes in at $1600 NZ (USD 1100).

Thoughts?
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Brad P

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Re: Power Users: MAC or PC?
« Reply #57 on: June 17, 2018, 07:38:45 PM »

Those sound like reasonable specs for the price point and what you say.  You MIGHT take a look at the P2000 graphics card too.  That will accelerate some other programs (unsure about lightroom) and give you 10 bit color.  If not now, then maybe later.  I'm not sure 10 bit color makes a huge difference, it's more the acceleration in Photoshop or other programs that I'd want that for.

If you're thinking about building your own machine, having just finished that, my advice is to look at all the YouTube videos you can (not watch, but look at the parts they are assembling that they announce in the beginning.  And try to find one that as closely as possible matches the specs you want.  Especially important is the motherboard.  The videos I cited above and built off of actually didn't match a lot of what I was building and I had to do a lot of back and forth with the motherboard manual in particular.  Could have been sped up to less than 6 hours to assemble instead of 12 if I had a video that matched the machine I was building. 

Regardless though, I'd have selected the same parts I did and taken longer, but just a thought.

Make sure your motherboard and power supply are overkill for what you're building and expandable.  There's wires youíll put all over the place from those, and if you want to make your computer last 8 years or so and be reasonably functioning during that time, those are key components.
« Last Edit: June 17, 2018, 07:42:49 PM by Brad Paulson »
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Frodo

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Re: Power Users: MAC or PC?
« Reply #58 on: June 17, 2018, 09:22:31 PM »

All good points Brad, thanks.
On the graphics card, I'm pretty sure Lightroom on Windows doesn't do 10 bit per channel (30 bit) colour, even though my NEC monitor does. I was recommended to get a Leadtek Quadro P400 GPU to operate in 10 bpc colour and its only NZD 230.  But if LR doesn't currently play ball, this is a future option. 
And a good point about keeping options open with the motherboard. 
I've been recommended a EVGA 550 GD 550W 80+ Gold Power Supply as being sufficient.
I won't be building this myself.  Don't mind adding RAM etc (or adjusting valves in my motorbike!) but want to stay away from the insides of a PC!
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Farmer

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Re: Power Users: MAC or PC?
« Reply #59 on: June 17, 2018, 10:13:09 PM »

It's interesting when folks comment about an OS they don't use much.  You know how much time I spend "maintaining" my PC each week?  Zero seconds.  It backs up in the background constantly to the cloud and an image is saved weekly automatically to a local DAS.  Basically, the same experience that a seasoned Mac user has on their Mac.

As to something more useful: Brad, I highly recommend a small expenditure on Directory Opus.  It's file management software and I know of some Mac users who run parallels just to use this software (I've been using it since it was developed and released for the Amiga).  https://www.gpsoft.com.au/

I'm not affiliated with them in any way, it's just simply the best file management software and can (and should) replace File Explorer as your default, imo.
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Phil Brown
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