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Which Mac Pro to buy

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Hope Holmesby
Which Mac Pro to buy
on Nov 10, 2010 at 12:34:33 am

Hi there...thanks for reading this..

Buying a new mac and need advice.

Main concern is running AE of course and Final Cut Pro.

Working at the moment with widescreen SD in PAL (1024 x 576px).

Work mostly making motion graphics from photos and other pixel artwork. 1 - 15 min movies. Would like to start using some 3D programs for text or even for modeling. Work rarely, if ever, with widescreen film.

My two main concerns are: work fast within the program on the timeline, fast clear previews and fast rendering.

What do you think is best to get in regards to:

How many cores?
How much ram?
Which speed?

Is it worth the extra money to buy the 12 core or even 8 core for the above issues?

Currently using the old 22" apple screen and a 15" screen, but requesting the 27" screen, so would be using the 27" and the 22" together.

What do you think of all this?

Was considering:
• 24 GB of ram. Do the Westmere processors still need that 3 set/slot configuration? or was that just for the Nehelam?
• 3 extra internal hds
• 2 superdrives for copying inhouse dvds

Is this overkill based on what we do?

We have not graduated to the HD large format of 1920px wide, due to the fact that no one in the department really has the power to process all those pixels, as they all have very slow computers (G5s).

Video department wanted us to use the large HD format, and we did for a few months, but we have talked them out of it as of last year. Who knows when they may change this and insist on HD.

Thanks for any thots on the subject.

Sincerely and with great thanks,
Hope

__________________________________________________

Life is here to enjoy.

Dual 1.8 GHz PowerPC G5, 150 GB; Mac OS X (10.4.11) 4GB RAM; 2 La Cie external HDs 1TB each; STP v2.0.2; FCP 6; AE 8(CS3)


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Tudor "Ted" Jelescu
Re: Which Mac Pro to buy
on Nov 10, 2010 at 7:30:23 am

My take on this: get the biggest, most pumped up MacPro that you can get the financial dept to pay for - HD will come back to haunt you soon enough and you will wish you had made a different choice when you got the new machine. And even if it does not, you'll have faster rendering anyway.

Tudor "Ted" Jelescu
Senior Compositor/VFX Artist


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Kevin Camp
Re: Which Mac Pro to buy
on Nov 10, 2010 at 4:34:18 pm

i agree with ted, if you want to do more with ae and do it faster, more cores and more ram will really help. a 12-core, 24gb mac will run nearly 2x faster than 6-core with 12gb of ram.

as for fcp (or motion, or any of apple's pro apps), the advantage will not be nearly as much as they will not use all the cores as effectively...

see this benchmark:

http://www.barefeats.com/wst10c.html

Kevin Camp
Senior Designer
KCPQ, KMYQ & KRCW


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Dave LaRonde
Re: Which Mac Pro to buy
on Nov 10, 2010 at 4:44:44 pm

I'll second Ted and Kevin: go for lots of cores and oceans of RAM.

Apple's Final Cut Suite applications are currently 32-bit, which means they're limited in the amount of memory they can see; they max out at something like 4 GB.

After Effects, on the other hand, is now a 64-bit application, and can see incredible amounts of memory... and it will use it. 24 GB is a good amount for now. Notice I said "for now".

You have to think that Apple will wake up to 64-bit eventually, so you want to be ready for it.

Dave LaRonde
Sr. Promotion Producer
KCRG-TV (ABC) Cedar Rapids, IA


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Hope Holmesby
Re: Which Mac Pro to buy
on Nov 11, 2010 at 5:20:29 pm

Dear Great Experts,

Thanks so very much for you fast and clear input. Really appreciate you taking the time to respond and give all this info. You're the best.

BTW, all your credentials are very impressive.

Lots of love to you all,
Hope

__________________________________________________

Life is here to enjoy.

Dual 1.8 GHz PowerPC G5, 150 GB; Mac OS X (10.4.11) 4GB RAM; 2 La Cie external HDs 1TB each; STP v2.0.2; FCP 6; AE 8(CS3)


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