Computers: What do photographers really need?

Forums Kit Chat Computers: What do photographers really need?

This topic contains 2 replies, has 2 voices, and was last updated by  ajroyle 7 months, 4 weeks ago.

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    Carl was using a beautiful little Huawei laptop at the last meeting which would easily rival the Apple machines aesthetically. It was running Windows 10.

    Adobe have warned us that (for Windows machines) only W10 and W7 will be able to handle their future updates, you will also need at least 8GB of RAM and better 16GB as a minimum.

    With a desktop 7 years old (which only survived an attack by Windows 10 with a heart transplant) I am thinking about a new computer. Specs have accelerated in those 7 years, especially in matching the demands of  gaming and video processing.

    So, yes, a fast processor and 16GB RAM, but what about the graphic?. Until now we have always thought that you just needed the best for photography, but is that still true? If I switch to Apple and the Mac mini it has graphics which are not intended for more than running a BBC computer emulation – you have to budget for a graphics device and the Apple one is about £700. But, does a photographer need to spend that much – is it OTT?

    I heard it said recently that a very modest graphics card is good enough for photography.

    Anyone up for advice?



    Pete Robinson

    To be honest I don’t know much about Macs. When they first started to become main stream there wasn’t many applications for them and they were quite expensive. They seemed to be popular with the press guys for their graphic capabilities. I decided to stick with Windows PCs because there was more software available and I was familiar with the operating system.

    When I upgraded my Windows PC a couple of years ago I asked Google what graphic cards were recommended for Lightroom and Photoshop. Abode had a list which included the NVIDA Geforce GTX 750 Ti so I bought one. It’s been OK, but sometimes the screen does take it’s time to refresh. I’m not sure if that the graphics card or other resources slowing down the PC. I’ve just asked Google again which graphic cards are best for Photoshop and it no longer recommends the card I bought! The advice does get a bit confusing and technical and changes quite quickly.

    Have a look at these links to see if they helps you decide:




    Thank you Peter, looks like the scope for economising on a graphics card is not that great! It is a little difficult to follow, as you say, because the recommendations are qualified My present card is the NVIDIA GT640 and I’ve never experienced any problems so I guess the present day equivalent would be OK as a base for deciding.

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