21 Replies Latest reply on Mar 13, 2011 12:57 PM by Orytek

    Anyone Using Premiere on an iMac Intel Core i5 or i7?

    ZenDao Level 1

      I am debating between ordering an iMac with either the 2.8GHz Intel Core i5 or 2.93GHz Quad-Core Intel Core i7. With 8 or 16 GB of memory. And possibly the 256GB SSD and 1 or 2TB ATA combo. I will be using Adobe Photoshop and Premiere on the iMac. I read some information on the web that iMac users felt that either they saw a benefit from an i7 or found that you will rarely see a significant performance boost with an i7 and opted for the i5. But the comments were too generic and basic to be useful.

       

      On the Apple Web site, it states that an i7 would be better for processor-intensive applications. Of course I read on another forum that some high-end/professional applications were getting confused by the hyper-threading and that the i5 was a better value. I am really on the fence on this one.

       

      I was hoping someone out there is actually running Premiere on an i5 and i7 and can give me feedback on their overall experiences.

       

      I am looking to keep the iMac for at least 3 years.

        • 1. Re: Anyone Using Premiere on an iMac Intel Core i5 or i7?
          Orytek Level 1

           

          There is quite a big difference between a 2.8 ghz i5 and a 2.93 ghz.Quad-Core i7.

          Absolutely don't get the i5 if you want to edit in Premiere. Hyper threading is a pretty big deal for cpu operations like encoding video and the 2.93 Quad-Core will give you 8. The processor itself is also much faster and it comes with faster graphics and the faster gddr5 memory.

           

          The 2.93GHz Quad-Core Intel Core i7 would be fast enough for video editing in Premiere.

          I have used it but prefer the Mac Pro with the Cuda graphics card which Premiere is optimized for.

          But make no mistake, the higher end iMac is surprisingly powerful and handles CS5 much better than it did CS4.

           

          If your dealing with highly compressed files like avchd then you will still need to render your timeline while editing but it should still be relatively smooth.

          Also you won't be sorry if you opt for the faster graphics with 1gb ram.

           

           

          • 2. Re: Anyone Using Premiere on an iMac Intel Core i5 or i7?
            Harm Millaard Level 7

            The best i5 system comes out at around 830 seconds in the PPBM5 Benchmark ,around 10 times slower than a fast machine. On OSX the difference between i5 and i7 will be less, because of the lousy threading support of the OS and the benchmark is only for Windows, but it will give you an inkling of the differences. Had there been the same test for MAC's, my guess is that the results would probably have been around 1300 seconds for an i5 and 700 seconds for an i7 MAC. That difference between PC and MAC in results is largely due to the efficiency of the OS to handle threading and Windows just does it better than OSX, as well as the missing CUDA/MPE support on iMAC's.

            • 3. Re: Anyone Using Premiere on an iMac Intel Core i5 or i7?
              ZenDao Level 1

              Thanks for the feedback. I keep reading generally good things about the i7 especially the iMac mid-review on Barefeat's Web site. Occasionally, I would run across threads that says to the contrary. Like Harm Millaard mentioned that Mac OS X does not do a very good job at handling the hyper-threading technology. Do applications (e.g. Premiere/Photoshop) need to be written to take advantage of hyper-threading or does Mac OS X handles this?

               

              Hyper-threading only kicks in when necessary, correct? It not on constantly.

               

              I still have not found any threads about mac applications being confused by hyper-threading.

               

              Also, if I get the iMac configured to have both the internal 256GB SSD and the 2TB ATA drive, are the fans going to roar like crazy to address the heat? I may want to consider getting a 1TB instead but I am not sure if that would still make a difference in terms of the heat dissipation. Does a 1TB run hotter than a 2TB internal drive?

               

              I want to teach myself Premiere but I am not sure if I will eventually do a lot professional projects in the future. But it would be nice to know the stuff.

              • 4. Re: Anyone Using Premiere on an iMac Intel Core i5 or i7?
                Harm Millaard Level 7
                Hyper-threading only kicks in when necessary, correct? It not on constantly.

                 

                Wrong. It is on constantly and PR uses it all the time. But if the OS does not support it very good, then you miss a lot of potential performance.

                • 5. Re: Anyone Using Premiere on an iMac Intel Core i5 or i7?
                  Orytek Level 1

                  The i7 iMac is a fine consumer machine and OS X will handle Premiere just fine. If you were using it for professional work, I'd strongly recommend a Mac Pro with Cuda graphics or maybe even a PC....  but anyway this forum is a great place to learn about Premiere but not so much about platform selection.

                   

                  Regarding your Hard Drive. I have 2- 2 terabyte drives and 2- 1 terabyte drives in my Mac Pro and they run equally cool.

                  The WD Caviar Black (WD2001FASS-00U0B0) 2TB is a good one. My son's 2.93 QC iMac only has a 1TB Caviar Black in it and it runs quietly.

                  • 6. Re: Anyone Using Premiere on an iMac Intel Core i5 or i7?
                    wonderspark Level 1

                    I'm using CS5 on a Mac Pro, but if I were choosing a system today, I'd build a PC. I built mine before CS5 came out, and everything changed with CS5... more than it already had with Windows 7.

                     

                    Having said that, I'm doing just fine using a Mac, but I know I'm missing out on a lot of performance. This is ok for my position, where I don't have to fret about insane deadlines, and that might also be true of your position as well. I'm just telling you that building a PC will give you more for less right now, and for the foreseeable future.

                     

                    I've seen my Mac-based edit system shine where a friend's nearly equal PC system crashed performing the exact same render, but that was in CS3, and he had a weaker GPU and half the RAM I do. Today, I could build a PC for the same price I paid for this Mac, and it would be much better, because CS5 and Windows 7 is that much different/better than what we had yesteryear.

                     

                    I love the Mac, but facts are facts. Something to think about, and you have the advantage of building a system with today's info and tech.

                    • 7. Re: Anyone Using Premiere on an iMac Intel Core i5 or i7?
                      ZenDao Level 1

                      Harm Millaard. Sorry. Poor choice of words. Originally I was think that hyper-threading was in standby mode ready to divvy up the task. Okay, so it is on constantly and the Mac OS X does not support it very well. Is Apple aware of this or do they just not consider this a critical fix?

                       

                      I came across an interesting thread in the Apple Discussions Group http://discussions.apple.com/message.jspa?messageID=9818633. It talks about disabling or turning off hyper-threading and CPU in order to save energy on a Nehalem Mac Pro. Is it something that can be done with an iMac i7? Just wondering...

                       

                      Orytek. I would love to get a Mac Pro but it's not quite in the budget this time around. Just out of curiosity, what would the iMac i7 be roughly comparable to in the current Mac Pro line?

                      • 8. Re: Anyone Using Premiere on an iMac Intel Core i5 or i7?
                        Chuck A. McIntyre Level 3

                        "but anyway this forum is a great place to learn about Premiere but not so much about platform selection."

                         

                        Currently, Apple does not have any system for sale ($8000 Mac Pro included) that can compete with even a low-end $2000 AMD powered PC.  An $8000 top of the line Mac Pro was recently tested up against several PC's. The $2000 AMD powered PC was approx. twice as fast at common video editing tasks as the top end dual Xeon $8000+ Mac Pro.

                         

                        Eric with ADK is a professional computer system builder focusing on systems for video editors: Here is the test

                        • 9. Re: Anyone Using Premiere on an iMac Intel Core i5 or i7?
                          wonderspark Level 1

                          Something else that annoys me greatly about OSX is the fact that I can burn a Blu-ray of my movie with my Mac, using the installed LG Blu-ray burner/player without any problems, but I cannot watch that same disc unless I boot into Windows. You may say, "Well, I'd just pop it into my Home Theater instead of playing it on the Mac."

                           

                          That's right... you will, because you can't play it in OSX, even though you have a shiny Apple Cinema Display with plenty of resolution.

                          • 10. Re: Anyone Using Premiere on an iMac Intel Core i5 or i7?
                            Orytek Level 1

                            Not the first time you've tried to deter potential Mac buyers with that link. That test is old and says there is no Nvidia option.

                            I've seen that link tossed about before and it's comparing a Cuda accelerated PC against a Mac using software only. Pretty absurd comparison and to post that link when it is not applicable today, because the Quadro 4000 for Mac is out. Also in the thread you linked to says the card is over 1100. It was 771. at Provantage when I bought it a couple weeks ago.

                             

                            Understanding that  Premiere is predominately used by those who prefer Windows, has made it easier to bear with the constant slant here when Macs are mentioned, but it is getting old.  I would be ashamed to pretend I believe such dribble. And the High end Mac Pro is not 8000. as you claim, unless you buy all the ram from Apple which everyone knows is ridiculous.

                            My Nvidia Quadro 4000 works just fine too as does Hyperthreading. Thanks, but I'm done.  Too many people in this forum that try to skew figures to suit their agenda which is to sway others because of their hate for Apple or Macs.

                            • 11. Re: Anyone Using Premiere on an iMac Intel Core i5 or i7?
                              Harm Millaard Level 7
                              It talks about disabling or turning off hyper-threading and CPU in order to save energy on a Nehalem Mac Pro. Is it something that can be done with an iMac i7? Just wondering...

                               

                              On a PC you can turn off HT in the BIOS. I assume that an iMAC has the same possibility, but am not sure.

                              • 12. Re: Anyone Using Premiere on an iMac Intel Core i5 or i7?
                                Chuck A. McIntyre Level 3

                                You shouldn't take it personally.  The Mac Pro's are like a Swiss Army Knife computer, suitable for many applications, but Apple currently doesn't offer a video editing specific computer/Mac Pro.  I hope they do, because competition is good for us consumers.  This is just my opinion, but in the case of AMD vs Intel  processors, I don't believe AMD can compete with Intel at this time.  I truly would LOVE to see AMD deliver a product that delivers performance a few notches above Intel's i7 top dog. Related to video editing, Apple can compete.  But will they?  Perhaps they find better profits elsewhere and have taken their focus off of their video editing customers.  Several things went into the mix related to the current PC performance edge:

                                Windows 7 64 bit

                                Premiere Pro CS5 64 bit native

                                The Mercury Playback Engine

                                 

                                With the Mac Pro, you are currently limited to the ($799 at newegg.com) Quadro 4000.  On the PC side there are quite a few GTX series Nvidia cards that offer better performance with MPE than the Quadro line for less money.  For instance the GTX 580 for $499.

                                 

                                The PPBM5 benchmark chart is a great hardware guide for video editors considering building their own system.

                                 

                                IMO the "Team Spirit" is acceptable when it comes to sports.  When it comes to performance and value, our "Team" should be the one offering the best quality and performance for the money.

                                 

                                Company's love the "Sports Fan" mindset.  It's all a part of marketing strategy.  When a company offers less performance at a higher price, it does consumers a service to be educated.  Profit "pruning" only brings us better products.  Apple is certainly capable of offering a faster video editing specific Mac Pro.

                                • 13. Re: Anyone Using Premiere on an iMac Intel Core i5 or i7?
                                  wonderspark Level 1

                                  I said what I did based on my love of value and performance. If all else was equal, I'd prefer Macs over PCs simply because they seem better built, and look nicer. I built my Mac for the sole purpose of editing an HD motion picture, and it performed extremely well. Since then, CS5 and nVidia changed the game, and I'm able to accept that it's Advantage PC right now. In CS3/CS4, I believe Macs were king.  I think sharing my experience and opinions with someone about to build a system is the right thing to do.

                                  • 14. Re: Anyone Using Premiere on an iMac Intel Core i5 or i7?
                                    ECBowen Most Valuable Participant

                                    The reason the Mac Pro was $8000 was the specs which you ignore. This was a Mac Pro with the 2.93GHz 6 cores with 32GB of ram along with a full set of HDD's and the 5870 video card which definitely ran you $8000 with the price of ram at the time. You are comparing a Mac Pro with 4GB sticks now versus when it was ran. Now you are correct it would not be $8000. It would be $7000 since the Mac Pro with those chips is $6448 if you just get the 1GB sticks that come by default which you have to get and Apple Care which you would be a fool not to get. But you conveniently forget the cost of the Quadro 4000 which is $799 at the least. BTW how do you have a Quadro 4000 when they are not even in the channel yet and they have not been in the channel and Newegg has shown out of stock because they can't get them either?? I asked our Nvidia Rep a couple of weeks ago what the ETA was and even he didn't know.

                                     

                                    So until we can test again with the Quadro cards the results stand unless you can show otherwise. Oh and the Hyperthreading is working now in Premiere. However there are reports people having issues with the performance in AE with longer projects. I have not confirmed that however. So no offence but I don't believe your statements yet because I have yet to see anywhere near the performance on the Mac Pro which I have tested many times versus the PC. It was not till the last test that the Hyper Threading actually worked with Adobe that I saw.

                                     

                                    Eric

                                    ADK

                                    • 15. Re: Anyone Using Premiere on an iMac Intel Core i5 or i7?
                                      wonderspark Level 1

                                      I know people with the Quadro 4000 for Mac. You can get them here for less than $799:

                                      http://www.provantage.com/pny-technologies-vcq4000mac-pb~7PNY90V3.htm

                                       

                                      Regardless, I know the PC will still blow the doors off the Mac.

                                      • 16. Re: Anyone Using Premiere on an iMac Intel Core i5 or i7?
                                        ECBowen Most Valuable Participant

                                        Are you sure they are in stock?? Because Disti has them listed and they have never been in stock that we have seen. Also Newegg shows out of stock. Provantage does not show a status either way. They can list it just like us. Doesn't mean they have it.

                                         

                                        Eric

                                        ADK

                                        • 17. Re: Anyone Using Premiere on an iMac Intel Core i5 or i7?
                                          wonderspark Level 1

                                          I can't say that I'm sure, but it does say on average, it takes 2-5 days to ship. I spoke with collegues who claim to have this card installed in their Mac, but I didn't ask them if they bought specifically from Provantage. They're out there in systems, or everyone is lying...

                                           

                                          Edit: Anyway, I'd like to know how it all goes, because I'm very tempted to install this in my 2009 Mac Pro 3.33GHz Quad edit system.

                                          • 18. Re: Anyone Using Premiere on an iMac Intel Core i5 or i7?
                                            ECBowen Most Valuable Participant

                                            I will email our Nvidia rep and throw a fit then

                                             

                                             

                                            BTW are you sure they don't have Quadro 4800 cards instead of 4000 before I email our Nvidia rep?

                                             

                                            Eric

                                            ADK

                                            • 19. Re: Anyone Using Premiere on an iMac Intel Core i5 or i7?
                                              ECBowen Most Valuable Participant

                                              Well after further investigation it looks like Amazon and B&H have some. Now I am definitely going to throw a fit

                                               

                                              Eric

                                              ADK

                                              • 20. Re: Anyone Using Premiere on an iMac Intel Core i5 or i7?
                                                gr jas

                                                Well I am a long time PC user and I am about to put mine on the street. I have spent way too many weekends over the last 10+ years fixing bugs, viruses and system upgrades that went wrong on my PC, my wife's and daughters and I am switching over to Mac regardless of slower video speeds. (Yes I am a consumer rather than a pro and have less deadline pressures.. well at least in video editing). And then there's the hardware; both my daughter's PC's tanked in under 2 years; no wonder their university classes are filled with Apple users.

                                                 

                                                So, having talked to about 20 people who have made the PC to Mac switch over the last year.. and wonder why they waited.. I can't wait.

                                                 

                                                Enough of my rant. My question is... and may be it's rhetorical... am I better to go with the MacPro i7 rather than the Mac i7 because it will continue to be upgradeable for things like new graphics cards. I don't know the hardware that well but it looks from the photos that the i7 might be more of a pig (or impossible) to upgrade. Thoughts?