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Thread: MacPro vs iMac vs ???

  1. #1

    Default MacPro vs iMac vs ???

    Hi all...a similar question has most likely been asked elsewhere, but after spending some time looking I thought I'd start a new thread. Sorry if this has been asked a ton already. So, I'm working for an organization that wants a documentary made (about 30 minutes in length) about what they do, etc. I am the filmmaker spearheading the projectówent to film school, have made short films, music videos, etc. The main area in which I lack expertise is editing and I'm now working on learning more. I am going to buy a new editing computer and, as I am used to Macs and Final Cut, would like to stay in Mac territory. I've gotten some advice and I've been told two things. One is I should go with an 8-Core Mac Pro with 6GB memory, and ATI Radeon Graphics card, and two 2.4ghz quad-core processors. The other recommendation was that I go with an iMac with a 3.4ghz quad-core processor, 16gb memory, and a 2tb solid state drive. This second suggestion was based on the quoted price of the first (both will run about $3600). My question is: is there an option that is cheaper than this, but still effective and good? I will be using this computer for quite a while I assume so it should be durable. If one of these two options is the best bang-for-my-buck, I'll cough up the money, but if not I'd like to save a little bit. Sorry for the long-winded question. Thank you, in advance, for your answers.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
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    If you're playing the numbers game, the benchmarks will likely point to the mac pro as the powerhouse for rendering and export. To be honest, at that price range, anything you get is going to be a beast. Some will point towards benchmarks that justify x speed for y task. Others will point you in a different direction based on the same benchmarks. I say ignore the numbers. Chose based on what offers you the greatest experience. Be that screen size, footprint or noise. You.'ll be spending a lot of time with one of your chosen macs... Chose the one that will give you the greatest editing experience (renders that are a few seconds quicker might only be a small factor).

  3. #3


    Thanks Marc! Any suggestions for a third, cheaper system? I just want to explore all my options. Thanks again.

  4. #4


    Mmmm cheaper you say?
    Buy ACER X3990-I3 | DESKTOP PC - Computer Base Units | Comet

    I'm kidding of course But the simplest way to make a decision is to answer the following:

    - How long do I want this purchase to last?
    Mac Pro will out-last an Imac by far...Due to it's upgradeable nature.

    - Do I need pure raw power?
    Mac Pro's are beasts, But that is all they Imac is a beast in a big shiny display. But the Imac lacks the specialised cards and abilities of the Mac Pro.

    - Will I make my money back in a year by using this?
    I'd consider that carefully...I'd also consider how many more documentaries and video projects the company is likely to do.

    If this is a one off, In all honesty it would be better to hire a Mac Pro for a month ( For which there are good rates out there ) Edit to your hearts content, Deliver the package and collect a nice pot of money for it.

  5. #5


    Thank you that's really helpful!

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