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View Full Version : Buying a new computer for deaing with large photo files, advise appreciated



Travl n inspect
12-18-2015, 10:58 PM
I'm a writer and using my mid-2009 MacBook Pro 2.8 GHz, dual core, 8GB, 2- 1TB HDs (optical drive replaced with a HD) for various projects. It has 2- USB 2, SD card reader, 1 mini DisplayPort, Firewire 800 port, and has been absolute workhorse. It still does all I need it to do, but... I just received 80,000 photos on a USB 3 hard drive and doing anything with them is s-l-o-w. Unacceptably slow. I tried breaking them down into separate folders and that is also unacceptably slow.

I think my present Macbook pro will see me through the next couple of years for writing projects, but for dealing with this number of photos, I think I need another computer, I'm just not quite savvy enough to know what to look for.

1. Do I need mainly a lot of RAM?
2. Do I have to have quad core (ups the price a lot)
3. Can I get by with a relatively inexpensive Macbook Air with extra RAM?

I don't want to spend $3,000 if I can find what I need for $1,500. This is specifically for organizing large photo (and possibly in the future video) files.

chas_m
12-18-2015, 11:04 PM
Retina 5K iMac.

Travl n inspect
12-18-2015, 11:46 PM
Retina 5K iMac.

Thanks, but I travel a lot. I need a laptop.

chas_m
12-19-2015, 03:07 AM
That would have been useful to mention, but of course the answer is then the best MacBook Pro you can afford.

RavingMac
12-19-2015, 08:17 AM
Any mid 2012 and newer MBP should suffice IMO. Your biggest gain will be from the USB-3 ports to access external HD

Slydude
12-19-2015, 02:40 PM
What will you be doing with these files? What type of files are they and how large are they? If these EW Lrge files and you will be editing them then memory will likely be a concern as well.

Travl n inspect
12-19-2015, 04:57 PM
"I'm a writer and using my mid-2009 MacBook Pro ..." "I think my present Macbook pro will see me through the next couple of years..."

Travl n inspect
12-19-2015, 04:59 PM
I'm organizing and using approximately 100,000 photos. On my current MacBook Pro it takes almost 24 hours just to move 11,000 photos to the trash.

Travl n inspect
12-19-2015, 05:14 PM
What will you be doing with these files? What type of files are they and how large are they? If these EW Lrge files and you will be editing them then memory will likely be a concern as well.
Most photos (JPEGs) are under 200 KB but there's 80,000 in one folder. I'm in the process of splitting it into multiple folders, but it's taking forever. Most I do is color correction.

chas_m
12-19-2015, 09:50 PM
An SSD and lots of RAM will really help with that. You could invest and add both of those to the machine you have now, and that would make a very noticeable difference. Or getting a newer machine that has those things would make even more difference.

I second RavingMac's suggestion ... anything with USB 3.0 and/or Thunderbolt, with the ability to add/max out RAM or to have (or upgrade) to SSD storage sounds like what you need. I specifically chose the mid-2012 MBP precisely for these reasons, and Apple still (essentially) sells the same machine as the non-Retina 13-inch model today (no optical drive in the later ones, though, so no room for a second SSD as mine has).

Travl n inspect
12-19-2015, 10:11 PM
An SSD and lots of RAM will really help with that. You could invest and add both of those to the machine you have now, and that would make a very noticeable difference. Or getting a newer machine that has those things would make even more difference.

I second RavingMac's suggestion ... anything with USB 3.0 and/or Thunderbolt, with the ability to add/max out RAM or to have (or upgrade) to SSD storage sounds like what you need. I specifically chose the mid-2012 MBP precisely for these reasons, and Apple still (essentially) sells the same machine as the non-Retina 13-inch model today (no optical drive in the later ones, though, so no room for a second SSD as mine has).

I'm already maxed out at 8GB RAM. I replaced the optical drive with a second hard drive but it's not SSD. Ooops. Can I run both a conventional hard drive and an SSD in the same MacBook Pro?

chas_m
12-19-2015, 10:17 PM
Yes. I did that for a while: I had a 1TB HD as my boot drive, and replaced the optical drive with a 240GB SSD I got super-cheap to "test it out." It took like two weeks, and I was ordering a 1TB SSD for the boot drive.

That speed is REALLY ADDICTIVE. :)

Because I have the 2012 MBP, I was able to max out the RAM to 16GB (which I had done earlier), which also helps. The only thing I can't change is the graphics card: it's kind of weak by today's standards, but it's much better than the one I had in my 2009 BlackBook, so as far as my photo needs go it's doing the job. Thanks to the 2012 MBP having the 802.11n and the Bluetooth 4.0 and the Thunderbolt too, I don't feel like I will *need* to change this now tricked-out unit for anything newer for quite some time (though WANT is a different thing altogether ... must ... resist ... Apple hype ...).

Travl n inspect
12-19-2015, 10:23 PM
Yes. I did that for a while: I had a 1TB HD as my boot drive, and replaced the optical drive with a 240GB SSD I got super-cheap to "test it out." It took like two weeks, and I was ordering a 1TB SSD for the boot drive.

That speed is REALLY ADDICTIVE. :)

Because I have the 2012 MBP, I was able to max out the RAM to 16GB (which I had done earlier), which also helps. The only thing I can't change is the graphics card: it's kind of weak by today's standards, but it's much better than the one I had in my 2009 BlackBook, so as far as my photo needs go it's doing the job. Thanks to the 2012 MBP having the 802.11n and the Bluetooth 4.0 and the Thunderbolt too, I don't feel like I will *need* to change this now tricked-out unit for anything newer for quite some time (though WANT is a different thing altogether ... must ... resist ... Apple hype ...).
LOL, thank you.

ScaryFatKidGT
12-24-2015, 02:45 AM
Yes. I did that for a while: I had a 1TB HD as my boot drive, and replaced the optical drive with a 240GB SSD I got super-cheap to "test it out." It took like two weeks, and I was ordering a 1TB SSD for the boot drive.

That speed is REALLY ADDICTIVE. :)

Because I have the 2012 MBP, I was able to max out the RAM to 16GB (which I had done earlier), which also helps. The only thing I can't change is the graphics card: it's kind of weak by today's standards, but it's much better than the one I had in my 2009 BlackBook, so as far as my photo needs go it's doing the job. Thanks to the 2012 MBP having the 802.11n and the Bluetooth 4.0 and the Thunderbolt too, I don't feel like I will *need* to change this now tricked-out unit for anything newer for quite some time (though WANT is a different thing altogether ... must ... resist ... Apple hype ...).


LOL, thank you.Pshhh the 650M is fine, it was overclocked in the MPB's anyway and the 750M is just a higher binned/clocked 650M with another gig of ram. The M370X is a little bit faster but not much.


Any mid 2012 and newer MBP should suffice IMO. Your biggest gain will be from the USB-3 ports to access external HD


An SSD and lots of RAM will really help with that. You could invest and add both of those to the machine you have now, and that would make a very noticeable difference. Or getting a newer machine that has those things would make even more difference.

I second RavingMac's suggestion ... anything with USB 3.0 and/or Thunderbolt, with the ability to add/max out RAM or to have (or upgrade) to SSD storage sounds like what you need. I specifically chose the mid-2012 MBP precisely for these reasons, and Apple still (essentially) sells the same machine as the non-Retina 13-inch model today (no optical drive in the later ones, though, so no room for a second SSD as mine has).USB-3 is your main issue, so 2012 is a minimum requirement. How much total space do these files take up? My suggestion would be a 2012 15 MBP with dual SSD's in RAID 0 or run the fastest external thunderbolt drive you can from the thunderbolt port. Also any newer 15" rMBP would suffice, but internal storage is limited, but runs in PCIe.

chas_m
12-24-2015, 04:00 AM
Good point about the PCI-e SSDs that are included in several MacBook models now -- they are more than double the speed of regular SSDs by virtue of being right on the PCI bus. Thunderbolt is also pretty great, but sadly peripherals that use it are still kind of pricey compared to USB 3.0 which -- while only half the speed of TB and a quarter of TB2 speed -- is still such a huge improvement on USB 2.0 that most consumers will be very pleased with it.

ScaryFatKidGT
12-24-2015, 05:55 AM
Good point about the PCI-e SSDs that are included in several MacBook models now -- they are more than double the speed of regular SSDs by virtue of being right on the PCI bus. Thunderbolt is also pretty great, but sadly peripherals that use it are still kind of pricey compared to USB 3.0 which -- while only half the speed of TB and a quarter of TB2 speed -- is still such a huge improvement on USB 2.0 that most consumers will be very pleased with it.Yeah idk what this guy wants, sounds like he is frequently transferring terabytes of info. I would go with the largest internal SSD he can afford if 512gb or 1tb is sufficient and if not, then get a NAS or some form of external Thunderbolt drive with multiple 7200rpm HDD's in RAID 0 or something... Or a solid state external, get a 1 or 2tb samsung 850 eve and throw it in a external 2.5" chassis. Idk how much room 800,000 jpeg's takes up?

A 2012 MBP with 2 SSD's in raid 0 would be really really fast, fast enough to bottleneck USB 3.0 or just about any external drive lol, SATA 6gb x 2.

paul_77
01-04-2016, 11:55 PM
I just received 80,000 photos on a USB 3 hard drive and doing anything with them is s-l-o-w. Unacceptably slow. I tried breaking them down into separate folders and that is also unacceptably slow.

I think my present Macbook pro will see me through the next couple of years for writing projects, but for dealing with this number of photos, I think I need another computer, I'm just not quite savvy enough to know what to look for.
.



Hi there,

'On my current MacBook Pro it takes almost 24 hours just to move 11,000 photos to the trash.'

My thoughts on this:
When you work on the images or attempt to move the images to the trash are they still located on the external hard drive?
If yes: is the external hard drive formatted for Mac? e.g. Mac OS Extended (Journaled)

Regarding image editing large numbers of images:
Are you using Photoshop to color correct thousands of images?

You can save a lot of time by using 'Actions' in Photoshop to process thousands of images automatically and in the background.
This works extremely well if the images need similar color correction, sharpening or resizing etc.


regards

Travl n inspect
01-05-2016, 12:36 AM
Hi there,

'On my current MacBook Pro it takes almost 24 hours just to move 11,000 photos to the trash.'

My thoughts on this:
When you work on the images or attempt to move the images to the trash are they still located on the external hard drive?
If yes: is the external hard drive formatted for Mac? e.g. Mac OS Extended (Journaled)

Regarding image editing large numbers of images:
Are you using Photoshop to color correct thousands of images?

You can save a lot of time by using 'Actions' in Photoshop to process thousands of images automatically and in the background.
This works extremely well if the images need similar color correction, sharpening or resizing etc.


regards
Duh, I finally realized that I was working with photos on the external HD through a USB2 connection. Felt pretty stupid upon that realization. I finally transferred half of them to the second HD in my computer and it now works at a speed I can live with, thanks.