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iMac 27" or MBP 17" for student learning Resolve Lite?

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Desmond Ford
iMac 27" or MBP 17" for student learning Resolve Lite?
on Mar 18, 2012 at 3:42:12 pm


I'm going to be learning Resolve over the next year or so and I would like some suggestions on which would be the best set up within my budget.

I'm a student, not a professional Colorist, but I am serious about learning. I'll be working mostly on 2k footage and below (DSLR, Sony F3 & FS100, Canon C300, etc...) and I'll also be using FCPX and Motion. I already have a FSI reference monitor for accurate color, so now I just need to update my old computer.

My choices are the best available options for custom iMacs or MBPs on the Apple website, excluding the memory which I will buy form third party sources...

17" MBP with 2.5GHz Quad-Core i7 with 8GB SDRAM and 256GB SSD. AMD Radeon HD 6770M graphics processor with 1GB of GDDR5 memory. Intel HD Graphics 3000 with 384MB of DDR3 SDRAM shared with main memory with automatic graphics switching. $3,500.00

27" iMac with 3.4GHz Quad-Core i7 with 16GB SDRAM. 256GB SSD. AMD Radeon HD 6970M 2GB GDDR5. $2,800.00

I know that graphics cards are essential for Resolve, but I'm confused about are the graphic card specs between the iMac and MBP. The way it's worded, it almost sounds like the MBP has better graphics, but that can't be, can it?

How much better is the iMac or MBP in relation to the other, in regard to Resolve and NLEs? Will I notice a significant difference performance between the two? I admit that if the difference is only minor, then I would probably want to go with the MBP for the simple reason of portability, even though it cost more.


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