September 01, 2014, 04:52:32 AM

Author Topic: Help needed lightroom and photoshop machine for editing 5d mkiii raw  (Read 3588 times)

jpjeff

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Hi all,

I keenly read the imac post and would love to get your thoughts on the route to go for a mainly lightroom machine, with a little photoshop and home video editing.

Currently i have asus ux31 laptop that i have been using for the above but lightroom is so slow the specs are:-

1.7GHz Core i5-2557M processor, 4GB of RAM 256gb solid-state drive.

I have read that i need more 16gb+ ram and two harddrives 1) os 2) cache.

The wife likes the idea of a imac 3.4ghz as less wires and looks cool. This will be expensive to spec up and only has one hard drive although could have a 2nd via thunderbold port. I would have to run windows as cant get my head round mac os so all up looking at about $4000.

I am leaning to spend less on a pc machine. However i would like it to be near silent (probably water cooled) and with a nice looking high res monitor 27" to satisfy the wife that it looks nice.

I don't mind spending the money if i will see a dramatic improvement in lightroom, but the last thing i want to do is spend the money on either system and have similar speeds i am experiencing,

Would love to get your thoughts and many thanks in advance.

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ecka

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Re: Help needed lightroom and photoshop machine for editing 5d mkiii raw
« Reply #1 on: March 12, 2013, 03:50:05 AM »
What made a dramatic improvement in lightroom, for me, is RAM Disk. I have 32GB of RAM in my machine and the bigger part of it (25GB) is used for RAM Disk. It is like 20 times faster than SSD (~9GB/sec). However, for video editing you may need more RAM (?64GB).
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verysimplejason

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Re: Help needed lightroom and photoshop machine for editing 5d mkiii raw
« Reply #2 on: March 12, 2013, 03:55:30 AM »
What made a dramatic improvement in lightroom, for me, is RAM Disk. I have 32GB of RAM in my machine and the bigger part of it (25GB) is used for RAM Disk. It is like 20 times faster than SSD (~9GB/sec). However, for video editing you may need more RAM (?64GB).

+1.  You need more RAM and you have to make it your priority.  Other specs are secondary.

jpjeff

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Re: Help needed lightroom and photoshop machine for editing 5d mkiii raw
« Reply #3 on: March 12, 2013, 04:23:41 AM »
Wow that is a huge difference thanks for your help

iKenndac

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Re: Help needed lightroom and photoshop machine for editing 5d mkiii raw
« Reply #4 on: March 12, 2013, 05:55:37 AM »
More RAM is certainly a good idea - 4Gb isn't enough. However! A poster above said he'd reserved 25Gb for a RAM disk, which only leaves 7Gb for the OS and other applications. Lightroom uses a ton of RAM, and if it runs out it'll start using the pagefile, which means hitting the hard drive, which gives a big slowdown. With 32Gb of RAM there's no reason not to use a RAM disk, but personally I'd leave a little more available for applications to use and have a smaller RAM disk. However, this is one of those things where experimentation will find the best sweet spot.

Quote
1.7GHz Core i5-2557M processor

This is going to be your second bottleneck after RAM. Lightroom is very CPU heavy (more so than Apple's Aperture, which offloads a lot more work to the graphics card than Lightroom) and I'm noticing my computer (which has a 3.2GHz i5 CPU) bogging down sometimes with 18MP pictures from my 60D when I'm doing batch edits and such.

Also, I looked up the spec sheet of that CPU (here) and it says the CPU only supports up to 8Gb of RAM. I'm not sure if that's true, but you may wish to double-check before throwing RAM at it.

lolo0476

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Re: Help needed lightroom and photoshop machine for editing 5d mkiii raw
« Reply #5 on: March 12, 2013, 06:19:51 AM »
+1 for Ram. You have only 4Go of ram, this is enough if you use your windows and smalls applications. If you want to win a little bit of time, increase your ram, 16Go can be enough if you don't work all the time with photoshop or editing video. The more you will do the more time you will loose if your system is not enough.
Another thing is your OS. You need a windows OS working with 64Bit. If  not you won't be able to use so much memory and so you won't win anything putting more RAM.
So first : OS system in 64Bit
Second : put more memory. look how much you can put on your motherboard. More is better, but you will really feel a difference between 4 and 16 Go. If you can more it will be easier as well.
Later you can change processor I7 is faster and will increase the power of your computer (but needs memory too).
Hope that will help you.
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jacomaree

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Re: Help needed lightroom and photoshop machine for editing 5d mkiii raw
« Reply #6 on: March 12, 2013, 06:20:45 AM »
i'm currently running the Mid 2011 27" iMac - specced up: Core i7 3.4GHz, 16GB Ram, 2GB ATI Graphics, 256GB SSD(OS & Apps) & 1TB SATA HDD (storage). i have a HP 24" IPS monitor as a 2nd display.

i'm using Lightroom 4 with Adobe CS6 Master collection. i do most of my editing in Lightroom and will use Photoshop to do my HDRs and Panoramas. this machine will run through stitching 10+ photos into a Panorama in a couple of minutes with no trouble...

if you go for an iMac, it's worth speccing it up to a faster CPU and definitely upgrade the RAM to the MAX (my iMac above can "unofficially" support 32GB now, need to upgrade...). SSD is very nice indeed and makes the loading of OS and your apps VERY fast...

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Re: Help needed lightroom and photoshop machine for editing 5d mkiii raw
« Reply #6 on: March 12, 2013, 06:20:45 AM »

yablonsky

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Re: Help needed lightroom and photoshop machine for editing 5d mkiii raw
« Reply #7 on: March 12, 2013, 06:44:49 AM »
I use a DELL xps desktop pc with a i5-750 cpu. 4 cores. Win7 64Bit. Photoshop CS6 64 Bit. 8GB Memory.
That works great with my 5D mark II RAW files. Parallel processing is the key.
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lolo0476

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Re: Help needed lightroom and photoshop machine for editing 5d mkiii raw
« Reply #8 on: March 12, 2013, 06:51:59 AM »
other thing, you will probably change your processor. Intel specs shows that it doesn't manage more than 8Go (have a look on intel's website).
I7 will be perfect and manage 32Go (I5 3rd generation manage 32Go of ram as well). Depends on how much you want to spend.
Ram disk will be necessary if you want to work on very large film. As videos.
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ecka

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Re: Help needed lightroom and photoshop machine for editing 5d mkiii raw
« Reply #9 on: March 12, 2013, 06:57:44 AM »
More RAM is certainly a good idea - 4Gb isn't enough. However! A poster above said he'd reserved 25Gb for a RAM disk, which only leaves 7Gb for the OS and other applications. Lightroom uses a ton of RAM, and if it runs out it'll start using the pagefile, which means hitting the hard drive, which gives a big slowdown. With 32Gb of RAM there's no reason not to use a RAM disk, but personally I'd leave a little more available for applications to use and have a smaller RAM disk. However, this is one of those things where experimentation will find the best sweet spot.

Quote
1.7GHz Core i5-2557M processor

This is going to be your second bottleneck after RAM. Lightroom is very CPU heavy (more so than Apple's Aperture, which offloads a lot more work to the graphics card than Lightroom) and I'm noticing my computer (which has a 3.2GHz i5 CPU) bogging down sometimes with 18MP pictures from my 60D when I'm doing batch edits and such.

Also, I looked up the spec sheet of that CPU (here) and it says the CPU only supports up to 8Gb of RAM. I'm not sure if that's true, but you may wish to double-check before throwing RAM at it.

I forgot to mention that my 3GB paging file is located on the RAM Disk as well ;)
FF + primes !

jpjeff

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Re: Help needed lightroom and photoshop machine for editing 5d mkiii raw
« Reply #10 on: March 12, 2013, 07:06:23 AM »
Thanks everyone for the advice  :D ;D

Unfortunately this laptop looks nice does not allow upgrade of ram (similar to mac book air). So appears i will have to bit the bullet and go for new system.

Seems to me the key for lightroom system

1) Ram as much as possible
2) processor i7 best that can support lots of ram

Did not know anything about ram disk so have read up. seems interesting if have lots of ram. also came accross this has anyone had any experience with supercache? Seems to be similar to ram disk but mirrors rather than load everything.

http://www.superspeed.com/desktop/supercache.php

Again thanks everyone for your help

axtstern

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Re: Help needed lightroom and photoshop machine for editing 5d mkiii raw
« Reply #11 on: March 12, 2013, 07:32:26 AM »
There are a few more aspects to consider:

Fan noise:
The perfect Light room PC (as I tried to build one by myself) is usually also used as an Internet PC, as a gaming PC etc.. depending on the demand in your family. Working though a pile of let us say 100 pieces of 60d Raws turned out to be a pain as the cooling settings I had foreseen did not fit to working quietly on a blog and the noise onslaught the PC presented when the processor load was multiplied by Light room. Especially the fact that the different cooling fans (CPU + Graphics card +Chassis) shifted their RPMs quiet often was annoying. So if you can influence it go for a chassis with fans as huge and slow turning as possible (250 mm). While there are plenty of Software/Bios/UEFI solutions to control the fans inside your computer it makes life a little complicated to find the right balance. In my PC I have all internal coolers on auto mode bound to a temperature threshold but the 250mm main chassis cooler has from factory a 3 stop manual cooler. I use this cooler on low for all my standard non heat intensive sessions and switch it to medium for Light room/Panorama/HDR sessions. Higher noise level but now the PC needs almost an hour of heavy load before the internal heat sources heat the inside of the PC so far that they start to influence each other. The fan noise in this configuration does not change pitch and is less of a distraction.

Disk Space:
Consider add-ons and plug-ins in regard to disk space. I once was careless enough to batch the NIK noise reduction software out of Light room to denoise 200 Gig of 60d Rows. That is 1 Terra of additional Gifs you add to your system and todays green HDs are behaving not so green anymore once they have a constant write access for hours (Hot hard disks heat up a small chassis quiet remarkably). If you system is designed to hold a mix of HDs (mine has a 256 Gig SMD for Windows and Light room + 2x2 Terra conventional HDs for Photos and Backup) you should pay attention to the RPMs. High-end fast spinning and reliable HDs are usually server HDs (not optimized to be silent). They whine at a high frequency and if there is more than one you might discover that their nuances in RPM deliver a resonating combined frequency. Talking about Terras of disk space might sound fast fetched but with canons new models waiting to be announced and 4K ante portas....

Graphic Card:
AMD and NVidia have different models to offer their calculating power to light room. Some Plug-ins for Light room crash when they do not like your card. This can be circumvented by not allowing the Plug-in to use graphic card resources but that leaves you with a slow system and requires some knowledge to be applied if the plug -in is not even starting.

Backup:
In the IT world there is the law: all non backuped Data is by definition unimportant Data. I'm a little paranoid with that. I backup one HD in my PC onto another. If a thief steals my camera, that is a loss of money. If a thief steals my PC that is a lifetime of memory gone. So I backup onto an external drive. This drive has to be as far away from your PC as risks connect to it. Consider what network speeds, connectors like E-sata etc... your Workstation should have. If you decide for a NAS: verify if your mainboard can keep up the magic 3x3 formula that is running SATA3 (Disks) PCIX3 (Graphics) and Gigabit Ethernet at the same time without putting load on the CPU. I have seen powerful multicore systems being rendered useless for hours because the backup process supposed to run in the background used up 70% of CPU resources due to the mainboard not being able to handle the Datastreams.

ecka

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Re: Help needed lightroom and photoshop machine for editing 5d mkiii raw
« Reply #12 on: March 12, 2013, 07:35:54 AM »
Thanks everyone for the advice  :D ;D

Unfortunately this laptop looks nice does not allow upgrade of ram (similar to mac book air). So appears i will have to bit the bullet and go for new system.

Seems to me the key for lightroom system

1) Ram as much as possible
2) processor i7 best that can support lots of ram

Did not know anything about ram disk so have read up. seems interesting if have lots of ram. also came accross this has anyone had any experience with supercache? Seems to be similar to ram disk but mirrors rather than load everything.

http://www.superspeed.com/desktop/supercache.php

Again thanks everyone for your help

I think that supercache is very similar to SSD caching, only using a RAM Disk instead of SSD. This way you are letting the system itself to decide which data needs to be cached. I don't trust the machine :), so I prefer to manage it myself. I tried 5-6 different RAM Disk softwares and decided to go with Primo Ramdisk, because it seems to be the most stable and simple to use (and one of the faster ones). My system is running 24/7 without reboot for many months and I would lose all the data on RAM Disk if the system crashes. It never happened, but I'm using copies nonetheless.
My system:
i7-3770K - because I'm running it 24/7 and it is more power efficient (google Virtu MVP)
GTX 670 - CUDA cores + I like games too
Sabertooth Z77 - just because :)
32GB 1600MHz (4x8GB) RAM
Vertex 4 SSD
10TB external storage
FF + primes !

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Re: Help needed lightroom and photoshop machine for editing 5d mkiii raw
« Reply #12 on: March 12, 2013, 07:35:54 AM »

jpjeff

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Re: Help needed lightroom and photoshop machine for editing 5d mkiii raw
« Reply #13 on: March 12, 2013, 07:53:39 AM »
There are a few more aspects to consider:

Fan noise:
The perfect Light room PC (as I tried to build one by myself) is usually also used as an Internet PC, as a gaming PC etc.. depending on the demand in your family. Working though a pile of let us say 100 pieces of 60d Raws turned out to be a pain as the cooling settings I had foreseen did not fit to working quietly on a blog and the noise onslaught the PC presented when the processor load was multiplied by Light room. Especially the fact that the different cooling fans (CPU + Graphics card +Chassis) shifted their RPMs quiet often was annoying. So if you can influence it go for a chassis with fans as huge and slow turning as possible (250 mm). While there are plenty of Software/Bios/UEFI solutions to control the fans inside your computer it makes life a little complicated to find the right balance. In my PC I have all internal coolers on auto mode bound to a temperature threshold but the 250mm main chassis cooler has from factory a 3 stop manual cooler. I use this cooler on low for all my standard non heat intensive sessions and switch it to medium for Light room/Panorama/HDR sessions. Higher noise level but now the PC needs almost an hour of heavy load before the internal heat sources heat the inside of the PC so far that they start to influence each other. The fan noise in this configuration does not change pitch and is less of a distraction.

Disk Space:
Consider add-ons and plug-ins in regard to disk space. I once was careless enough to batch the NIK noise reduction software out of Light room to denoise 200 Gig of 60d Rows. That is 1 Terra of additional Gifs you add to your system and todays green HDs are behaving not so green anymore once they have a constant write access for hours (Hot hard disks heat up a small chassis quiet remarkably). If you system is designed to hold a mix of HDs (mine has a 256 Gig SMD for Windows and Light room + 2x2 Terra conventional HDs for Photos and Backup) you should pay attention to the RPMs. High-end fast spinning and reliable HDs are usually server HDs (not optimized to be silent). They whine at a high frequency and if there is more than one you might discover that their nuances in RPM deliver a resonating combined frequency. Talking about Terras of disk space might sound fast fetched but with canons new models waiting to be announced and 4K ante portas....

Graphic Card:
AMD and NVidia have different models to offer their calculating power to light room. Some Plug-ins for Light room crash when they do not like your card. This can be circumvented by not allowing the Plug-in to use graphic card resources but that leaves you with a slow system and requires some knowledge to be applied if the plug -in is not even starting.

Backup:
In the IT world there is the law: all non backuped Data is by definition unimportant Data. I'm a little paranoid with that. I backup one HD in my PC onto another. If a thief steals my camera, that is a loss of money. If a thief steals my PC that is a lifetime of memory gone. So I backup onto an external drive. This drive has to be as far away from your PC as risks connect to it. Consider what network speeds, connectors like E-sata etc... your Workstation should have. If you decide for a NAS: verify if your mainboard can keep up the magic 3x3 formula that is running SATA3 (Disks) PCIX3 (Graphics) and Gigabit Ethernet at the same time without putting load on the CPU. I have seen powerful multicore systems being rendered useless for hours because the backup process supposed to run in the background used up 70% of CPU resources due to the mainboard not being able to handle the Datastreams.

Thanks for the conphensive post really helpful

Fan noise is some to consider particularly if i go self build vs. imac. I was thinking with watercooling cheaper now and easier to install that this may be the way to go. For the hard disks i was thinking two ssd drives one OS and one for pictures. This should also reduce heat and noise. Now I have been introduced to Ram disk i think i will investigate this option aswell.

In terms of disk space my workflow is i pull pictures into lightroom then achive out via gigabit ethernet to 6 bay Nas that is in raid 5, key photos  i sync to cloud. This is covers my disk space needs.

I will read up on graphics cards and plugin with lightroom any recomendations of preference? I have previously prefered nivida for video encoding.

Thanks for the watch out on backin up i will check this ou,

Again thanks for the post  :D

jpjeff

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Re: Help needed lightroom and photoshop machine for editing 5d mkiii raw
« Reply #14 on: March 12, 2013, 07:55:40 AM »
Thanks everyone for the advice  :D ;D

Unfortunately this laptop looks nice does not allow upgrade of ram (similar to mac book air). So appears i will have to bit the bullet and go for new system.

Seems to me the key for lightroom system

1) Ram as much as possible
2) processor i7 best that can support lots of ram

Did not know anything about ram disk so have read up. seems interesting if have lots of ram. also came accross this has anyone had any experience with supercache? Seems to be similar to ram disk but mirrors rather than load everything.

http://www.superspeed.com/desktop/supercache.php

Again thanks everyone for your help

I think that supercache is very similar to SSD caching, only using a RAM Disk instead of SSD. This way you are letting the system itself to decide which data needs to be cached. I don't trust the machine :), so I prefer to manage it myself. I tried 5-6 different RAM Disk softwares and decided to go with Primo Ramdisk, because it seems to be the most stable and simple to use (and one of the faster ones). My system is running 24/7 without reboot for many months and I would lose all the data on RAM Disk if the system crashes. It never happened, but I'm using copies nonetheless.
My system:
i7-3770K - because I'm running it 24/7 and it is more power efficient (google Virtu MVP)
GTX 670 - CUDA cores + I like games too
Sabertooth Z77 - just because :)
32GB 1600MHz (4x8GB) RAM
Vertex 4 SSD
10TB external storage

Thanks for the tip my machine currently runs 24/7 so will follow your recomendations, i will also check primo ramdisk

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Re: Help needed lightroom and photoshop machine for editing 5d mkiii raw
« Reply #14 on: March 12, 2013, 07:55:40 AM »