25 Replies Latest reply on Jan 19, 2017 8:04 AM by jgillphotography

    Please let me know if this laptop is overkill

    jgillphotography

      Hi all.

       

      I'm a hobbyist photographer and use Lightroom and Photoshop heavily.  My HP HDX16 is tired and needs to be replaced.  I'm looking to get into editing all my home movies that no one can watch because they aren't organized and lots of short clips so I am dipping my feet into Premiere Pro and some After Effects.  I don't have 4k video yet, but I'm sure it will come in the future.  I was considering this machine:

       

      Acer Predator 17 G5-793-72AU 17.3" Gaming Laptop Computer - Black; Intel Core i7-6700HQ Processor 2.6GHz; NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 6GB GDDR5 VR Ready; 16GB RAM; 1TB HDD + 256GB SSD  Full HD IPS LED-backlit LCD 1920 x 1080

       

      this machine can be upgraded to 64 gb or Ramm if needed for the future.

       

      I also just found something a few hundred cheaper:

       

      HP ENVY 17-s143cl 17t Touchscreen Laptop - Intel® Core™ i7-7500U (2.7 GHz, up to 3.5 GHz with Intel® Turbo Boost Technology, 4 MB cache, 2 cores) -

      NVIDIA GeForce 940M 4GB Graphics - 1080p; 16 GB DDR3L-1600 SDRAM (2 x 8 GB)

       

      i'm leaning toward the Predator for future proofing but what would you do?

       

      Thanks in advance.

        • 1. Re: Please let me know if this laptop is overkill
          Peru Bob Adobe Community Professional & MVP

          I've moved this to the Hardware Forum where the hardware experts are more likely to read and respond.

          • 2. Re: Please let me know if this laptop is overkill
            Bill Gehrke Most Valuable Participant

            Go with the Predator because you do not want a 2-core CPU for editing.  Also the GPU is far superior with the GTX 1060

            1 person found this helpful
            • 3. Re: Please let me know if this laptop is overkill
              jgillphotography Level 1

              Thank you Bill,

               

              Here are three more to consider slightly less money, as the Predator is $1499. I would love to get something under $1k but not sure if it's possible.  I know anyone of these would handle Lightroom and Photoshop just fine, and since I'm only editing home movies not sure if the Predator is overkill (I am new to Premiere Pro).  Thank you in advance:

               

              ASUS ROG GL752VW Laptop - $999

               

              Intel® Core™ i7-6700HQ Processor 2.6GHz - 16GB DDR4 RAM

              17.3" FHD (1920 x 1080) matte Display

              4GB NVIDIA GTX 960M Graphics

              1TB 5400RPM SATA Hard Drive + 128GB Solid State Drive

               

              Lenovo Ideapad Y700 Laptop - $1299

               

              Intel® Core™ i7-6700HQ Processor 2.6GHz

              16GB DDR4 RAM

              1TB Hard Drive + 256GB Solid State Drive

              17.3" IPS LED-Backlit FHD (1920 x 1080) Anti-Glare Display

              4GB NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960M Graphics

               

              HP Performance Pavilion 17t Laptop - $1299

               

              Windows 10 Professional 641

              16 GB DDR4-2133 SDRAM (2 x 8 GB)

              16 GB memory; 2 TB HDD storage6; 128 GB SSD storage7

              Storage type: HDD; SSD

              Hard drive description: 2 TB 5400 rpm SATA6

              Solid-state drive description: 128 GB M.2 SSD7

              Processor speed: 2.6 GHz

              Processor family: 6th Generation Intel® Core™ i7 processor

              Processor: Intel® Core™ i7-6700HQ with NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 960M (2.6 GHz, up to 3.5 GHz, 6 MB cache, 4 cores)2 4 8 9

              Display: 17.3" diagonal UHD IPS UWVA anti-glare WLED-backlit (3840 x 2160)5

              Graphics: NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 960M (4 GB GDDR5 dedicated)

              • 4. Re: Please let me know if this laptop is overkill
                Peru Bob Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                You want 7200 RPM HDDs, not 5400 RPM HDDs.

                1 person found this helpful
                • 5. Re: Please let me know if this laptop is overkill
                  jgillphotography Level 1

                  I guess since I do absolutely NO Gaming do I really need a gaming laptop?

                  • 6. Re: Please let me know if this laptop is overkill
                    Peru Bob Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                    jgillphotography wrote:

                     

                    I guess since I do absolutely NO Gaming do I really need a gaming laptop?

                    Video editing computers have some similarities to gaming computers:

                    -fast processor

                    -good graphics

                    -a lot of fast RAM

                    -fast internal drives

                    • 7. Re: Please let me know if this laptop is overkill
                      RoninEdits Most Valuable Participant

                      new laptops should be coming out any time now, with the new cpu i7-7700HQ and new gpu gtx 1050. they should be closer to $1k since the gtx 1050 won't be as expensive as the gtx 1060. if you don't want to wait, you might find a laptop on discount/close-out for close to $1k with a gtx 970m. i would skip any with the gtx 960m or lower.

                      • 8. Re: Please let me know if this laptop is overkill
                        sandking150

                        Thank you so is the GTX 1050 better than the GTX 1060?

                        • 9. Re: Please let me know if this laptop is overkill
                          edit1754 Level 1

                          Regardless of which one of those three is the best choice, if you do want a 4K display, you made the right choice by picking the 17.3" Pavilion and not the 15.6" Pavilion.

                           

                          The 17.3" Pavilion's 4K UHD 3840x2160 display is a true 3840x2160 display, and I believe it has 100% Adobe RGB gamut too.

                           

                          The 15.6" Pavilion's "4K UHD 3840x2160" display option is a false 4K display that uses the RG/BW Pentile matrix to cheat the ability to advertise that resolution. Avoid the 15.6" Pavilion 4K UHD.

                          • 10. Re: Please let me know if this laptop is overkill
                            Peru Bob Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                            The GTX 1060 is a better card than the GTX 1050, but requires more power and is more expensive.

                            • 11. Re: Please let me know if this laptop is overkill
                              RjL190365 Level 4

                              For your particular budget I would eliminate the Kaby Lake-based HP that's in your initial list (unless you're never going to edit anything higher than 720p resolution) because all laptop Kaby Lake CPUs that has been released so far have only two physical CPU cores, and from my testing even a 3.7 GHz dual-core i3-6100 (Skylake) CPU is significantly slower in Premiere than a 3.3 GHz (Turbo-boosted) quad-core i5-6500 (same CPU generation and architecture as the i3-6100).

                               

                              As for the other HP that's in your new list, the GPU in that system is a bit weak: That GeForce 940M/MX is not even a second-generation Maxwell (GM2##) GPU, but a older first-generation one (GM107) that's clocked slightly lower than a desktop GTX 750 Ti (based on the same GM107 GPU). And although the display is a true 4k display, the GPU is simply too weak to handle 4k.

                              • 12. Re: Please let me know if this laptop is overkill
                                jgillphotography Level 1

                                RjK thank you, but I believe the second HP is a 960M with 4GB.  does that change your feeling at all?  Also the display probably doesn't matter to me since you can edit 4k without a 4k display right?  I don't watch anything on my laptop, it is just a tool to do work.  I think my focus should be on hardware and the ability to upgrade some things like RAM.  Am I thinking this through correctly.  If I get heavy into video editing I will probably build a desktop for that purpose when I finish my basement.  Right now everything needs to be portable.

                                 

                                Thanks

                                • 13. Re: Please let me know if this laptop is overkill
                                  RjL190365 Level 4

                                  I stand corrected on the 17-inch HP with the 960M. The 960M is still not even a second-generation Maxwell GPU - but a first-generation GM107 GPU that's clocked slightly lower than the desktop GTX 750 Ti that it is based on. As such, it is still too weak for 4k editing.

                                   

                                  You see, NVidia has had a history of rebadging old-generation GPUs with new names at the lower end. In fact, one of the versions of the desktop GT 730 that's still sold at retail is based on the exact same GPU as the lousy GT 430 from 2010!

                                   

                                  And no matter which laptop you choose, you do have to know that you will need to have that laptop plugged into an AC wall outlet just to even edit at all. This is because all laptops will throttle down the clocks seriously when on battery power (often to the point where the laptop's performance capability falls below the minimum performance capability that's required for Premiere to run at all) no matter what, and the power that's required of a powerful video editor will cause the battery to have a woefully insufficient battery run time between charges. In fact, the battery might run down to completely empty from a full charge in a matter of minutes with the power that's required of a good "portable" editing rig!

                                  • 14. Re: Please let me know if this laptop is overkill
                                    RoninEdits Most Valuable Participant

                                    the gtx 1050 ti 4gb is a good/balanced match for premiere to a 4 core intel cpu, like the i7-6700hq or i7-7700hq. any other choices like the gtx 900 series are old tech that are slower and more expensive (unless on close-out deals), or faster gtx 1060 etc that are overkill and wasteful. again, if you cannot wait then look for a 970m on close-out discount. you should also look for a laptop that is easy to upgrade the memory, so you have the option of 24 or 32gb later. storage upgrade options are also nice, but usb ssd's can be used to get around upgrade storage limitations.

                                    • 16. Re: Please let me know if this laptop is overkill
                                      jgillphotography Level 1

                                      Sounds more and more like the $1,199 Acer Predator is the winner.  Ram can be upgraded to 64GB, GTX 1060 6GB and IPS screen

                                      • 17. Re: Please let me know if this laptop is overkill
                                        jgillphotography Level 1

                                        Thank you all.  I went and looked at the Acer Predator.  It is a beast and not very portable.  So here goes my next question.  I have a home server I built for storage as well as my Plex server and transcoding.  Would I be better off if I wanted something a little more portable with a 17" screen to use a non gaming laptop with a 960M for putting together the video, save it to the network and then let my server do the rendering? 

                                         

                                        Here are my specs, I would need to add a video card to this system:

                                         

                                        INTEL BOX INTEL CORE I7-4790K

                                        ASROCK H97M PRO 4 MATX LGA 1150 (max Ram 32GB DDR3)

                                        16GB Ram (can be upgraded if needed)

                                         

                                         

                                        Thanks for all the suggestions.

                                         

                                        • 18. Re: Please let me know if this laptop is overkill
                                          RjL190365 Level 4

                                          For assembling the video to transfer to another PC for rendering and transcoding, you don't even need a quad-core CPU or a GTX 960m. If your current laptop can't handle even such a simple editing task as that because it's seriously outdated, you only need a relatively cheap new-generation laptop with a dual-core CPU (i3 or i5, not a Pentium or Celeron) with integrated Intel HD graphics. Anything higher than that would get wasted because such a simple task would barely utilize such upgraded components. But be careful: Many of those cheapies have only a 1366x768 display - and those laptops will require a connected external display just for Premiere to even run at all.

                                           

                                          On the other hand, if your video sources are of relatively complex (heavily compressed) codecs such as H.264, then that 17" HP with that GTX 960m is a good starting point.

                                           

                                          Note that the above assumes that your source video has a resolution of 704x480 or better. If on the other hand your source video is only 320x240, then it is highly likely to be encoded in a distribution codec, which is all but unsuitable for editing.

                                          • 19. Re: Please let me know if this laptop is overkill
                                            jgillphotography Level 1

                                            Thanks RjL.  sorry for all the questions.  Is my server good enough for rendering if I add a video card?  If I do which card should I add?  If I did add a video card would it be faster still on the Acer Predator laptop? 

                                             

                                            Thanks

                                            • 21. Re: Please let me know if this laptop is overkill
                                              jgillphotography Level 1

                                              Ok so I did a search for the Nvidia GTX 1050 that someone recommended and looks like they are starting to come out now.  The Acer Predator is still $1,199 but the 1050's look like they are coming in a little cheaper!!!  I know for gaming making sure the laptop stays cool is important.  Would middle of the road gaming laptop (meaning not a Acer Predator or Asus ROG that have huge fans and vents) similar to a MSI, HP or ASUS GL series stay cool enough when doing Photoshop and PRemiere Pro or After Effects? Or do I need a huge laptop for that? The reason I ask is the Predator and ROG laptops are pretty beefy and not as mobile friendly.

                                              • 22. Re: Please let me know if this laptop is overkill
                                                Swarby Level 1

                                                If you're looking for power & portability the new 15.6" Dell XPS 9560 might be it, although possibly over your budget.  It can take up to 32gb ram, has a GTX 1050, the new KabyLake 7700HQ (quad core), Thunderbolt3, and a 4k touchscreen with 100% adobe RGB, although I'd be curious to see if it's fake matrixed 4k like a previous post here mentioned.  I've never used an XPS before so I don't know how hot or loud they get at full turbo boosted load (the 7700HQ turbo boosts to 3.8ghz).  But Dell does advertise that the keyboard's carbon fiber material keeps it cool to the touch.  I'd imagine with such a thin design it probably gets pretty hot, but that's only a problem for your lap, not the computer, it will never go hotter than it's designed to.  KabyLake's are also supposed to consume less power and run cooler.

                                                 

                                                I need a new laptop for Premiere, AE, C4D, for when I'm working on the road, away from my desktop workstation.  I'd be replacing my 6 year old Macbook Pro.  The new MacBooks are underwhelming to me and I've migrated from Mac to Windows a few years ago since Apple started abandoning their pro market.  Depending on the gigs that come in for me in the next few weeks, I might pull the trigger last minute and get an XPS 9560 if I have to.  But I'm trying to hold out until later in the year if/when a Surface Book 2 comes out or Lenovo updates their Yoga X1.  I really want a 2-in-1 with pen support so I can sketch and do 3D sculpting in Zbrush, but I also want it to have Thunderbolt-3-USB-C for future proofing, and the possibility of taking my Titan X GPU out of my workstation and using it as an eGPU plugged into the laptop's Thunderbolt 3 port for extra power on the road.  So far though, it seems like eGPU setups are only working on Razor laptops, and not other Thunderbolt 3 equipped laptops.  The type of intel chipset may determine whether eGPU'ing is possible or not.

                                                • 23. Re: Please let me know if this laptop is overkill
                                                  jgillphotography Level 1

                                                  Thank you for the response.  The Dell is a little out of my range.  i just picked up an Asus GL752VW from Costco for $999 that has the GTX 960m 4GB, 16GB Ram, 1TB 5400 plus 128GB SSD.  Not sure if i should keep it or get the Acer Predator for $200 more with the GTX 1060 1TB 5400 and 256 GB SSD.  I believe the displays are the same.  The Asus is thinner and a little more portable but I'm not sure if it will get too hot.

                                                  • 24. Re: Please let me know if this laptop is overkill
                                                    JFPhoton Level 3

                                                    I have owned several Asus ROG gaming laptops that I have run PPro for years now. They all have been quality machines and all are still running. The Asus you selected is old tech and though not horrible, is not up to current standards. Considering the additional investment in upgrades you will need to get decent performance, another model may be better.

                                                     

                                                    However, I did just look at the Asus spec page for your model and it says that an M.2 slot IS available for connecting a PCI x4 NVMe drive, like the Samsung 960 Pro, ( which is just starting to ship in 1 and 2 TB models}. The included 128GB drive, appears to be a standard SATA III SSD and being that small, will provide crappy performance as a boot drive, considering the slow write speed.

                                                    The 1 TB spinning drive is USELESS for video editing...it is just WAY too slow and will not work. It can be used as a " backup drive",or, as an "archive drive", but, NOT in active video editing.

                                                     

                                                    If you keep your machine, you will want to :

                                                     

                                                    1. Increase the system memory to 32GB yourself....or, at least to 24 GB if some of the memory slots are " hidden" under the keyboard and not user accessible. 16 GB is "OK", but, more than 20GB is the real minimum you need.

                                                     

                                                    2.Improve your storage drives......the "stock" arrangement you now have is practically USELESS for editing. Actually, all you need to do is to install a Samsung 960 Pro PCI SSD into that M.2 slot after you " clone " the contents of the existing boot drive onto it. The 1TB drive will be the fastest drive solution and all your files can go on it.....the 1 TB version may be expensive,but, it is WORTH IT !!! The bi-directional speed it provides eliminates the need for a separate "boot drive",or, " scratch disks".......everything can just go on it and you get the benefit of the incredibly fast performance  that is TWENTY TIMES FASTER than a spinning 7200rpm hard drive and 6 to 7 times faster than a SATA III SSD ! Be sure to double check with Asus that your particular M.2 slot is actually enabled for the high speed PCI x4 connection. I have read where sometimes that port is not enabled if the machine was configured to ship with a SATA III SSD in that slot......

                                                     

                                                    3. Although newer GPUs have more video memory, like 6 and 8 GB......yours with 4GB will at least provide what is required for 4K editing. The newer 1060 and 1070s for laptops are the SAME as their desktop equivalents and do perform better than the 9xx series mobile counterparts.

                                                    • 25. Re: Please let me know if this laptop is overkill
                                                      jgillphotography Level 1

                                                      Thank you for such a detailed response.  It looks like the Acer Predator at $1,199 is the correct choice for me.  It's on sale until the end of the month so I'll wait a few more days to see if any GTX 1050ti machines come out and their price.