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?: Is there a cheaper PC equivalent to a 5k iMac for photogs


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#1 greyhoundrick

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Posted 01 February 2018 - 02:39 PM

Hello, 

Thank you for your time and expertise.

I have been a Mac user for over 30 years and have enjoyed my experience. I have also used Windows to a lesser extent and although I prefer Mac OS, I am happy to use Windows as well. 

I am a semi-professional photographer and use my computers 75% of the time for photo processing with Lightroom CC, Photoshop CC and Nik Software. Im about due for a new computer and my first inclination is to go for a $3000 5k iMac, however, thats a lot of money to me right now and Im wondering if there is a PC based configuration that would be comparable to a 5k iMac. 

The iMac I'm looking at is 27" 5k monitor, 4.2 GHz quad core processor, 16 GIG DDR4 RAM, Radeon Pro 580 graphics card w/ 8 GB memory and 512 GB SSD.

I have been told that there are many PC configurations that are just as good as the iMac for far cheaper, but I cannot find one.

The biggest challenge I believe is finding a 5k monitor to incorporate into the system and to be able to keep the price under $3000. For that matter and only because I really have never compared the 2 side by side, is there a discernible difference between a 4k and 5k monitor?

Please let me know your specific recommendation. I prefer an All in One, but would be very happy with a traditional desk top set if I can save some money.

Thank you very much for your help and hope you have a great day!

best to you,

Rick



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#2 Drillingmachine

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Posted 01 February 2018 - 03:53 PM

You can build comparable desktop (you don't need that powerful video card for Photoshop) for around $1300 or less.

Rest is about display. I don't consider 5K monitor worth it, 4K is enough IMO. But you should first choose monitor and then see how much you want to invest on desktop itself.

#3 Kilroy

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Posted 01 February 2018 - 04:32 PM

I don't think you're going to find an all in one PC with a 5K monitor.  Another thing to consider is if you will have to purchase a new licenses for your software if you move to a PC, if you do it may push the price over staying with the Mac.



#4 greyhoundrick

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Posted 01 February 2018 - 05:09 PM

You can build comparable desktop (you don't need that powerful video card for Photoshop) for around $1300 or less.

Rest is about display. I don't consider 5K monitor worth it, 4K is enough IMO. But you should first choose monitor and then see how much you want to invest on desktop itself.

 

Thanks very much for the input Drillingmachine. I appreciate it! 

I don't think you're going to find an all in one PC with a 5K monitor.  Another thing to consider is if you will have to purchase a new licenses for your software if you move to a PC, if you do it may push the price over staying with the Mac.

I think that when you have the Adobe CC products that you can use them on any 2 computers no matter the operating system but I might be wrong. Thanks for the help. Will keep looking into it! :-)



#5 MadmanRB

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Posted 02 February 2018 - 12:18 PM

Well if you are planning on building or buying please wait foor a bit before doing so, cryptocurrency has robbed GPU's from the masses and memory is still very costly.

It is normally cheaper to build than buy but right now the market is a mess.


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#6 jonuk76

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Posted 02 February 2018 - 12:37 PM

4K and 5K only refer to the resolution of the screen - how many pixels are packed into an area. On a 27" screen, a 4K monitor (3840 x 2160) has DPI (dots per inch) of 163.  At 27", a 5K screen has a DPI of 217.  For info - https://www.sven.de/dpi/

 

There are very few standalone 5K PC monitors for sale at the moment.  There is just a handful of 27" Dell and HP monitors (HP Z27Q, Dell UP2715K) and they seem to be difficult to find for sale.  You could expect to pay upwards of $1000 if you do find one.

 

The main issue, I would imagine, for a screen for photography purposes is not the resolution, but the colour accuracy and calibration options.  Real high end professional displays like this Eizo are not particularly high resolution (merely QHD, or 2560 x 1440, which is a good usable resolution on a 27" monitor) but are very accurate.

 

Yes you could build or buy a system with a similar/better spec to the iMac for less money (probably not in an all in one form factor though).  Prices on some components are exceptionally high at this moment though. An RX 580 GPU for example, is not worth buying.  MSRP = around $230 - actual selling price is more like $7-800 due to demand from coin miners.  Radeon Pro's and Quadro's (workstation cards which support 10 bit colour) are relatively unaffected by the mining boom though so could be a valid choice.  RAM has between doubled and tripled in cost in the last 2 years.  The main thing, it would seem, is deciding on a screen.


Edited by jonuk76, 02 February 2018 - 12:38 PM.

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#7 greyhoundrick

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Posted 02 February 2018 - 01:16 PM

Well if you are planning on building or buying please wait foor a bit before doing so, cryptocurrency has robbed GPU's from the masses and memory is still very costly.

It is normally cheaper to build than buy but right now the market is a mess.

Thanks so much for the input! I wasn't aware of the impact cryptocurrency had regarding this. Will have to look into how that works. Appreciate your expertise!

 

4K and 5K only refer to the resolution of the screen - how many pixels are packed into an area. On a 27" screen, a 4K monitor (3840 x 2160) has DPI (dots per inch) of 163.  At 27", a 5K screen has a DPI of 217.  For info - https://www.sven.de/dpi/

 

There are very few standalone 5K PC monitors for sale at the moment.  There is just a handful of 27" Dell and HP monitors (HP Z27Q, Dell UP2715K) and they seem to be difficult to find for sale.  You could expect to pay upwards of $1000 if you do find one.

 

The main issue, I would imagine, for a screen for photography purposes is not the resolution, but the colour accuracy and calibration options.  Real high end professional displays like this Eizo are not particularly high resolution (merely QHD, or 2560 x 1440, which is a good usable resolution on a 27" monitor) but are very accurate.

 

Yes you could build or buy a system with a similar/better spec to the iMac for less money (probably not in an all in one form factor though).  Prices on some components are exceptionally high at this moment though. An RX 580 GPU for example, is not worth buying.  MSRP = around $230 - actual selling price is more like $7-800 due to demand from coin miners.  Radeon Pro's and Quadro's (workstation cards which support 10 bit colour) are relatively unaffected by the mining boom though so could be a valid choice.  RAM has between doubled and tripled in cost in the last 2 years.  The main thing, it would seem, is deciding on a screen.

Thank you very much for your post. Much appreciated. Yes, I think the screen is a good place to start. In my experiences I have always liked the Mac screens. IMO they seem to be consistently color accurate, extremely sharp, great viewing angles, glossy screens w/o the huge glare Ive seen on Dell, Lenovo etc. monitors and plenty of NITS for use in areas with lots of lighting. 

 

I currently use a 2013 15" MBP Retina with dedicated graphics and it is started to show some signs of wear, but for the most part is an excellent machine. I think getting a larger screen desktop or AIO is something I should do fairly soon. Thanks again!






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