12 Replies Latest reply on Nov 26, 2014 10:02 AM by Jao vdL

    Appropriate hardware for Lightroom

    Sote.Stou

      Hi everybody,

      I run Lightroom on a mid 2012 13.3 macbook pro i5 2,5Ghz (VGA intel4000), 16GB 1600Mhz RAM, samsung 850 pro 256GB, Yosemite 10.10.1 with extDisplay of 1920x1080. New, optimised catalog, freshly installed (from scratch) OS X and so on.

       

      I 've have performance issues (probably always had) to the point that it gets unusable, without extreme editing (lots of brushes and so ). Very, very sluggish behaviour. I do understand that my little macbook is not a performance monster, but I hoped that my hardware upgrades would be efficient enough for a not fast but usable experience.

       

      I would like to know if any of you guys have something to suggest. I have done a lot of research and applied all the tips (history, previews, settings).

      I'm slowly turning into a semipro photographer with higher demands in performance. From what I understand, I have to upgrade to better machine. Being on a tight budget I'm thinking of a used mid 2012 15" macbook with an i7 (2,3/2,6Ghz) and an NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M (512/1gb) VGA. Its a computer i can reach and plus i can install my ram and ssd, so they don't go to waste.

       

      Will this be sufficient? I thought about a stationary computer but, apple doesn't give me so many options and I don't want to go back to windows. Thought of hackintosh too, but its kinda scary. So I thought that the 15" macbook would be a good idea.

       

      Any comments?

       

      Thanks

        • 1. Re: Appropriate hardware for Lightroom
          dj_paige Level 9

          In my opinion, you want the fastest CPU you can afford. Unless you have specific needs for a graphics card from other programs (not Lightroom), get the bare minimum graphics card, as Lightroom does not use the GPU for processing. Minimum 8GB memory, preferably 16GB.

           

          Also, the answer somewhat depends on how big (in megapixels) are the photos that come out of your camera. Which we don't know, but if its a relatively recent DSLR (or it will be in the near future), you'd certainly want the fastest CPU you can afford. If you've got an older DSLR you might get away with a slower CPU, but really I don't think anyone can say for sure how fast the CPU has to be for your camera.

          • 2. Re: Appropriate hardware for Lightroom
            Jao vdL Adobe Community Professional & MVP

            I 've have performance issues (probably always had) to the point that it gets unusable, without extreme editing (lots of brushes and so ). Very, very sluggish behaviour. I do understand that my little macbook is not a performance monster, but I hoped that my hardware upgrades would be efficient enough for a not fast but usable experience.

            That shouldn't happen. That machine with a SSD in it should be fairly fast and not that much slower than current machines especially with it running that fairly low resolution external display and with a good 16GB of memory. My main machine is a retina MBP 2.3 GHz i7 from that same year and it works just fine for even heavy Lightroom and Photoshop use. Supposedly it is similar in single core performance to your machine but only about twice as fast for multicore. I do 24MP and much larger stitched images with that machine and it works really well for that purpose. So I would suspect that something else is going on on your machine. Is your catalog file on the SSD? Are your images? Or are you using on an external drive? If you use an external drive, what interface? Hopefully at least USB 3. Have you checked Activity monitor in "All processes" mode to see if something else is eating CPU? Spotlight indexing is a major performance suck with fresh installs for example. Also, any AV software such as sophos will absolutely kill your performance with Lightroom especially for very large catalogs. Have you checked the speed on the SSD you put in to see if it is actually delivering the performance you expected? My experience is that if you have badly degrading experience over time that disk access might be the issue and not the raw CPU performance.

             

            If you do decide to upgrade, that 15" MBP is about twice as fast (MacBook Pro "Core i7" 2.6 15" Mid-2012 Specs (Mid-2012 15", MD104LL/A, MacBookPro9,1, A1286, 2556*) @ EveryMac.com) at multicore stuff than your current machine. This doesn't speed up Lightroom as much though as you might expect. Maybe only 50%.

            • 3. Re: Appropriate hardware for Lightroom
              Sote.Stou Level 1

              thanks for your time dj_paige,

              i did forget to mention that I edit raw 18.7 and at occasion 21.1 MP, the question here is if an "Ivy Bridge" 2.3 or 2.6 GHz Intel "Core i7" will do the job.

              • 4. Re: Appropriate hardware for Lightroom
                Sote.Stou Level 1

                Yes Jao, everything is on the ssd, nothing is eating up the memory or cpu, no file vault, no nothing. the sad is new and the machine is working great otherwise. I have done a great research as I said and I think that I have taken care of everything. The thing is still slow and when it comes to brushes.... well... then its game over for me.

                I've even made a sample screen recording to show what is going on. I disabled everything else and left the local corrections on. Only three different brushes.

                Can anybody else confirm if this is normal and if an upgrade to an i7 would solve my issues?

                http://adobe.ly/1uPzs59

                what do you think?

                Its impossible to work like that.

                • 5. Re: Appropriate hardware for Lightroom
                  Sote.Stou Level 1

                  "the SSD"

                  damn autocorrect!

                  • 6. Re: Appropriate hardware for Lightroom
                    dj_paige Level 9

                    Sote.Stou wrote:

                     

                    thanks for your time dj_paige,

                    i did forget to mention that I edit raw 18.7 and at occasion 21.1 MP, the question here is if an "Ivy Bridge" 2.3 or 2.6 GHz Intel "Core i7" will do the job.

                    Hmmm ... I believe I said that you should get the fastest CPU that you can afford

                     

                    Hmmm ... I believe I said that I don't think anyone can say for sure how fast the CPU has to be for your camera.

                    • 7. Re: Appropriate hardware for Lightroom
                      Sote.Stou Level 1

                      thanx dj_paige,  I don't understand though why nobody can say for sure.

                      If your working on 24MP RAW on a machine and it performs well, why can't you say that it will perform well for me too?

                      It seems that Jao doesn't have a problem with this macbook even he does heavy work.

                      • 8. Re: Appropriate hardware for Lightroom
                        Sote.Stou Level 1

                        So the question now in my head is:

                        Is there such a big (actual) performance difference between dual core i5 2,5Ghz and a quad core i7 2,3Ghz even though lightroom is supposed to not benefit so much from multiple cores but clock speed? How important is it for performance to have a dedicated GPU? Not a fast GPU, just dedicated.

                        any thoughts?

                        • 9. Re: Appropriate hardware for Lightroom
                          Sote.Stou Level 1

                          the 25mp photos your talking about... are they raw or jpeg?

                          • 10. Re: Appropriate hardware for Lightroom
                            Jao vdL Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                            RAW. I only shoot raw as a principle;-). I also stitch to high resolution 16-bit tiff. Those files can run to 100-200 MP quick. Lightroom slows down on those but is still usable. Gpu  performance shouldn't matter for Lightroom because it really doesn't use the gpu. I would not expect a major difference between an i5 and an i7 at the same clock speed but in the aggregate considering both cpu type and number of cores that could give you a 50% boost

                             

                            Sent from my iPhone

                            • 11. Re: Appropriate hardware for Lightroom
                              Sote.Stou Level 1

                              well here I found pretty nice information

                              Mac Performance Stats from MacWorld - How fast is your Mac?

                              Its seems your rMacbook is really fast compared to the others, but i suppose it has a lot with the sad to do. The funny thing is that the 13in 2,9 dual core i7 seems to perform pretty well, sometimes very close to its quad core, lower clocked brothers. I suppose upgrading to an 13in 2.9Ghz dual core i7 is not as wise as upgrading to a 4core i7 15in macbook? cause i found one att a tempting price

                              • 12. Re: Appropriate hardware for Lightroom
                                Jao vdL Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                                I would go for the 4 core. It does help quite a bit in export and other batch stuff even if it doesn't speed up single image operations all that much. At least in my experience. It is not linear with the number of cores, but it does speed up.

                                 

                                Sent from my iPad