10 Replies Latest reply on Sep 14, 2011 12:10 PM by Fuzzy Barsik

    Mac or PC?

    F-LIX Level 1

      guys, i got mix opinion about which operating system is the best for rendering speed. i'm using after effect CS5,3ds max, maya for a moment. Next january, i'm officially become a animation&visual effect student in particular art academy. Well, i have a planning to buy a powerful laptop rather than dekstop instead due to its portability,however i have no idea at all about this both OS. so guys, which is the best for rendering, mac or PC?


      sorry 4 my bad english

      Thx before

        • 1. Re: Mac or PC?
          Rick Gerard Adobe Community Professional & MVP

          That depends... and there is no right answer. Things change quickly in the market. You can theoretically buy more machine for the money if you go with the Windows OS but there are others that claim that Mac builds better machines. There are some that claim that a Mac running Windows is a better machine than any Windows only machine you can buy. There have been security holes in both, but there are far fewer on the Mac side.


          The real answer the question has to come from you. What's the most used OS at your school? What's your budget? Is there software that you must have to graduate that's only available on one OS? What kind of customer service and support is available for your machine?


          In my experience a trouble free OS doesn't exist and the difference in rendering speed between systems with nearly identical specs but a different OS is so small that the deciding factor has always been "which system will I have to spend the least time monkeying around with to keep it free of driver, virus, and configuration errors. If you read carefully you'll know what system I prefer.

          1 person found this helpful
          • 2. Re: Mac or PC?
            F-LIX Level 1

            there is no any responses up until now from my univeristy about the question of their OS preferences. but back to my own problem, i personally couldn't use MAC, i live in one of east Asia countries which most of their people aren't get to used it.


            i got mix opinon here from my friends. they said MAC is more suitable for sound editing and still picture, while PC is better for gaming,video editing.

            do you agree with this view?


            okay, talking about budget, i don't mind to spend $2000 for laptop, i don't prefer PC(not really practical). do you recommend Alienware m17x laptop for this issue?

            and one more, most of people said that GPU and memory RAM is the most important part of computer to help rendering faster. is this also worked providing that i upgrade my processor ?

            • 3. Re: Mac or PC?
              Fuzzy Barsik Level 4

              You know what is true - 3D rendering is always time consuming even for quite a beefy machine.

              If you're not limited in budget, you'd rather bought 2 machine, where one of them would be dedicated for rendering desktop.


              And right after making such decision (which is obviously a bit more than $2000) you get into a friendly hug of PC World !!!

              You can build extremely fast (AND reliable!) PC desktop dramatically cheaper.

              (In laptops only world you are not blessed with so much difference though...)

              • 4. Re: Mac or PC?
                F-LIX Level 1

                2 dekstop do you mean? lol.that's crazy! my parent would rip off my neck


                by the way,i'm an international student who study in USA for animation degree.and i will using Homestay for accomodation.

                so, is it a good idea to buy a tough machine like alienware laptop?  or just a laptop is not good enough? do you have a good spec of powerful PC for me?

                well, my budget will be around $2300.


                3D artist's spec computer = gamer's spec?


                you know, it's kinda wasting time just sit in front of my computer to waiting a rendering result in 3DS MAX.

                • 5. Re: Mac or PC?
                  Fuzzy Barsik Level 4

                  No, I mean one laptop for mobility plus one desktop for rendering.

                  But I doubt if it's possible to build good enough spec for $2300 (e.g. just one good enough NVIDIA card would cost of about $400...)

                  However, you may start from a good laptop (or vice versa), keeping in mind two machine config for future 'upgrade'.


                  CPU, GPU, RAM, several HDD (e.g. fast one for your OS, reliable one for your source files, another one for your project files) - all will contribute to efficiency.

                  Start from Adobe Creative Suite system requirements page.

                  Build purchasing decision matrix, assigning weights for every item in the list...


                  Purchasing decision is not a simple task (seriously).

                  • 6. Re: Mac or PC?
                    F-LIX Level 1

                    well, this is the choosen spec of laptop by me, and i'm planning to order this one


                    PROCESSORIntel® Core™ i7 2630QM 2.0GHz (2.8GHz Turbo Mode, 6MB Cache)
                    OPERATING SYSTEMGenuine Windows® 7 Ultimate, 64bit
                    MEMORY8GB Dual Channel DDR3 at 1600MHz (4DIMMS)
                    VIDEO CARD2GB GDDR5 AMD Radeon HD 6990M
                    HARD DRIVE1.5TB Raid 0 (2x 750GB 7,200RPM)
                    LCD PANEL17.3-inch WideFHD 1920 x 1080 60Hz WLED
                    WIRELESS CARDIntel Centrino Wireless-N 1000


                    is it good enough ??

                    the price is $2500

                    • 7. Re: Mac or PC?
                      Fuzzy Barsik Level 4

                      Yep. Looks good enough for me.


                      BTW, do not forget to include such thing as Customer Service into your purchasing decision matrix. Warranties and other related services, including such things as the speed of response, accessibility etc. may save your life on occasion, although in most cases you hardly ever have a chance to check if things really go that way they promised...
                      • 8. Re: Mac or PC?

                        Although it's a bit old, you might find this article interesting. They haven't made a CS5 edition yet.



                        • 9. Re: Mac or PC?
                          Rick Gerard Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                          The thing missing from that article is an in depth explanation of the memory and cache settings. You can absolutely clobber the render speed in AE on any OS by having an effect that's not quite up to snuff or having memory allocations or processor assignments fouled up. In the long run it's the reliability of the system in your production environment that determines how profitable the rendering portion of your business is. It's your creative edge that determines your success or failure as a company and ultimately as an artist. Both Mac and PC can be configured to be profitable tools. Both can be a nightmare. I still maintain that your best choice is based on a careful analysis of all of your computing needs and the quality and durability of the hardware. Saving a few dollars on a home built PC or FrankinMac may be a good choice for a hobbyist, but a pro needs a machine and service program that won't waste time down the road. One day monkeying with a machine for me could easily cost as much as a new Mac Pro or HP desktop.

                          • 10. Re: Mac or PC?
                            Fuzzy Barsik Level 4
                            ...One day monkeying with a machine for me could easily cost as much as a new Mac Pro or HP desktop...
                            Another one good reason for having 2-machine config
                            ...Saving a few dollars on a home built PC...

                            Depending on where one's skills are, few dollars may result in up to 30% of a machine cost. However, if one do not understand why he is puchasing this or that particular HDD, graphic card etc. etc., AND FROM WHOM he is buying all that stuff, he obviously risks to end up with a nightmare.


                            Another one. Home built and customised computer are two big differences. And PC world is much friendlier on that point compared to Apple world.


                            So as not to be verbose, both Mac or PC are just tools.

                            Purchasing decision (as I already mentioned) is not a simple task.

                            Such things as

                            - one's hardware skills

                            - budget

                            - supplier reliability

                            - customer service

                            must be included in purchasing decision matrix and weighted.