Please recommend a computer for photo editing

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by zeppman, Apr 6, 2010.

  1. zeppman

    zeppman TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2009
    Messages:
    39
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Chicago
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    Hey everyone,

    I am in the market for a new computer. I prefer PC because that's all I've ever worked with, but would be open to the suggestion of a mac. My current computer is over 10 years old and takes forever to run lightroom. I'd like to keep this reasonable (under $1k if possible). Does anyone have any suggestions? Is RAM the most important component? I am also capable of building my own computer. I just would like to know what processor and amount of RAM would make lightroom run smoothly. Thanks.
     
  2. Boomn4x4

    Boomn4x4 TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2010
    Messages:
    766
    Likes Received:
    4
    Location:
    Ohio
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    Processor speed is most important, followed by RAM. Well, in reality, their importance is equavlent, but its easy to upgrade your RAM later on, but impractical to upgrade your processessor.

    Honestly, for $1,000 you'll be golden with whatever computer you buy.

    An Intel 3gHz processor, 4GB of RAM is going put you in at about $800... Which will be more than sufficient for you.

    You would even be safe dropping down to a 2GHz processor and 2GB, dropping yoru price to about $500... and still be fine.

    But you really should consider going as high as your budget will allow. The more you put into it now, the longer you will be happy with it.

    If you are going to be doing video editing however, that's a whole different can of worms.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  3. zeppman

    zeppman TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2009
    Messages:
    39
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Chicago
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    Thanks Boomn... and I am only interested in photos.
     
  4. Gaerek

    Gaerek TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    May 2, 2009
    Messages:
    1,341
    Likes Received:
    98
    Location:
    Sitka, AK
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    Just to somewhat parrot what Boom has said, hardware is WAY more important than Operating System. Keep in mind that Macs today have the same hardware in them that PCs do, and they cost about 20-30% more. I have nothing against Macs, but I can't, in good conscience, recommend a Mac to someone on a budget, especially one under 1k.

    Get as fast a processor as you can afford, and load as much RAM into as possible. Like Boom said, keep in mind it's easy to add RAM later, not as easy to upgrade a processor.
     
  5. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2003
    Messages:
    33,818
    Likes Received:
    1,811
    Location:
    Edmonton
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    Also consider that for a machine made for photo editing, the display is something rather important to consider. Most monitors these days are made to look good for web surfing, movies & video games...but not necessarily for accurate photo editing. Either way, you should get yourself a calibration system for your monitor, if you don't have one already.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  6. Boomn4x4

    Boomn4x4 TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2010
    Messages:
    766
    Likes Received:
    4
    Location:
    Ohio
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    Try 100% more.... a bare bones iMac starts at $1,200... an equivalent PC about $600. Toss into the mix the fact that the Mac operating system is based off of Unix, which is essentially Linux.... which is free....

    But you are right.... I would never recommend a Mac to anyone... budget or not.

    Something I forgot to mention in my first post. Avoid at all costs building a computer. Unless you are a high tech gamer, it isn't worth it. 10 years ago, it was a great thing... but today, computers are so cheap you aren't looking at saving much money by building one... and when you build one, you get no support. The $100 you save by building it yourself is going to get washed out in the 8 hours it takes you to build, configure, and install the OS on a homemade.

    And another thing.... don't bother asking what brand to buy. You are going to get 10 different answers from 10 differnt people... and each of the 10 answers is going to get bashed by the other 9 people. Just shop around for a name brand computer... Dell, Gateway, Sony, Toshiba, IBM, HP... and you'll be fine. Some of them run good deals at times, and the bottom line is all the parts are made in the same place anyway.
     
  7. zeppman

    zeppman TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2009
    Messages:
    39
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Chicago
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    I don't want to stray too far away from "photo" discussion (since this is a photo forum) but it is interesting that you say that, Boom. I built my old computer, and although I haven't been following computer technologies since then, I don't think it would be that difficult... if you had once done it before.

    I thought selecting your own hardware (some places will pair CPU/MB for you) selecting the required ram, hard drive and video card you pretty much set. I have an OS already on disc.

    I'm assuming lightroom/photo shop do not need a high end video card since these are still shots, not moving video. Am I correct in assuming that?
     
  8. Rosshole

    Rosshole TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2009
    Messages:
    536
    Likes Received:
    14
    Location:
    WI
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    You can also look for systems on Tigerdirect/newegg type sites and you can get a hell of a machine with a 22" monitor for $600.

    Computers are far better than what they used to be, and they are all made with the same hardware anyways.
     
  9. Rosshole

    Rosshole TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2009
    Messages:
    536
    Likes Received:
    14
    Location:
    WI
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    That sounds right to me, and one huge bonus of building your own is that you don't get all of the "Bloatware" installed on your computer.
     
  10. reznap

    reznap No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2010
    Messages:
    2,410
    Likes Received:
    64
    Location:
    Ohio
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    Yes. Even most moving video is handled by the CPU, not the graphics processor. HOWEVER, Photoshop CS4 does have the capability of graphics hardware acceleration and video players like VLC, or Windows Media Player Classic, can play hardware accelerated HD video.

    I use hardware acceleration in cs4 and really it only makes zooming in, panning, a few effects, etc.. work smoother and more 'fluidly' but really not that big of a deal.
     
  11. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2003
    Messages:
    33,818
    Likes Received:
    1,811
    Location:
    Edmonton
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    For the most part, yes, that is correct.

    Although, the latest versions of Photoshop (CS4 & CS5) have now started to take advantage of the available RAM in the video card (provided you have the right card) to speed up or improve some things.
     
  12. gryphonslair99

    gryphonslair99 Been spending a lot of time on here!

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2006
    Messages:
    11,441
    Likes Received:
    2,100
    Location:
    Wichita, Kansas, USA
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]

    Let's see, how many times have I had a blue screen of death on my Mac's?...0

    How many viruses have I had on my Mac's?...0

    How many times have I had hardware issues with my Mac's?...0

    How many times have I had registry issues with my Mac's?...0

    How many times have I had installation issues with my Mac?...1 It was the software vendors error that they had fixed by the next day, not a problem with my OS.

    How many times have I had uninstall issues with my Mac?...0

    Want me to go on???:D

    Yes Mac's cost more in outlay, but their serviceable life is longer, they have far fewer vulnerabilities, fewer compatibility issues and the hardware that Apple uses is dependable top of the line.

    While I too would probably not recommend a Mac to someone on a tight budget, I would recommend it to anyone who wants a quality, well written tight system that they can depend on.
     

Share This Page

Search tags for this page
building a fast long term computer for photo editing 2012
,
building a photo editing pc
,

computer for photo editing

,
computer photo editing
,
computer recommend
,

good computer for photo editing

,
pc build for photography
,
photo editing pc
,
recommend a computer
,
what is a good computer for photo editing