iMac i5 3.1Ghz or iMac i7 3.4Ghz (both 27 inch)
I'm having a tough time deciding between 3.1GHz Quad-Core Intel Core i5 and 3.4GHz Quad-Core Intel Core i7
Primary needs : Editing raw files from 5D Mark2 and D700 in CS5, DPP and CaptureNX2. HD video editing in After effect and Final cut pro.
Having read a lot on web, and having seen pages of benchmarks, it is obvious than i7 has a good lead. But my question here is, do I really need all that power for my needs?
Once bought I don't plan to upgrade in next 3-4years time.
Appreciate your suggestions.
There is no need for the I7
That's said, the SSD is wonderful feature : you boot way faster your mac. I recommand this option even if it's expansive.
(Mac OX and applications on the SSD), data on the HD.
It's all about photography
I forgot to mention that video editing will only be 10%.
I'm slowly beginning to understand i5 3.1Ghz should suffice. Need to make a decision by end of beginning of next week.
Are you aware that all rumours point towards an imminent refresh of the iMacs? I am holding off for about a month and would hope / expect that the latest Ivy Bridge versions of iMacs will be out by then.....just possibly with retina displays .
IMO, the probability of a 27" Retina iMac is quite small at this time. They're going to have their hands full just trying to make 15 and 13 much less 27.
And then, could you afford it? At the current rate, it'd probably be soemthing like a $1000 adder
Editing video may only be 10% now but who knows what the future holds. If you can afford it and as you don't plan to upgrade for 4 years then future proof your machine with the i7
More operating systems and software will be released that will need more computing horsepower and 4 years is a very long time in computing. My 3 year old Mac Pro won't run Final Cut Pro X properly.
Also waiting in the wings for the new iteration of iMacs. From what has been posted on MacRumors, and from a friend who founded a big MUG group in Los Angeles, the i7 cpu offers advantages only to certain sorts of applications. It would largely go unused by PhotoShop and LR. But, if you've got the extra money, why not?
Several pro photographers have told me that displays for PCs are superior to the iMac screen. So, since there is an advantage to having two screens in any case, save money and choose a small iMac. Then buy a second monitor that is larger to sit alongside it.
New iMacs coming soon.. wow, I don't mind waiting a month or two. Can you imagine a situation where I have purchased the current version and a newer one follows the following month!
If you expect your computer to last 3 to 4 years minimum, your best off getting the fastest unit you can afford. This helps future proof you and little and extends the life of the computer to better meet your expectations.
Adobe is already making considerable use of the graphics cards in both PS and LR. This is expected to increase in the future releases of those programs. I would personally go for the i7 and the largest graphics/video card available. I would then load it up with 16 GB of aftermarket ram and sit back and enjoy it for the next 3 to 5 years.
I think spending an extra $100 for the 2GB graphics card is a very good idea. The processor upgrade I would put a slightly lower priority on. Of course you want to buy a lot of RAM.