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Larger MP bodies - and computer updates

LenShepherd 10 3.6k United Kingdom
18 Sep 2012 2:41PM
What is your experience with downloading and processing files from recent high MP bodies?
My current laptop, high specification for it's era, is 4.5 years old Vista - and takes on average 6 seconds to download a D800 RAW image - about 1.5 hours for the 1,000 shots some wedding and event photographers take in a day.
The camera comes with a USB 3 cable - so maybe 1 minute for 100 shots with a USB 3 computer, plus much faster image manipulation with recent high end processors.
Processing with my old system can take up to 12 seconds an image depending on what is being done to the file.
With the D600 due on Thursday, and the Canon 6D just announced - maybe the new bodies are running ahead of the computers and hard drives most currently own Sad
My plan is to "soldier on" until at least November November for Windows 8 and PC's with USB 3 and the thunderbolt equivalent.
I know a Mac with Retina display is one route to the future, but at over 2,000 with upgraded capacity it is not cheap.
Separate hard drives with USB 3 are relatively affordable, so not a big issue.
What do others upgrading to high MP bodies plan to do?

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User_Removed 8 4.6k 1 Scotland
18 Sep 2012 3:16PM
Happily, I needed to upgrade last year and spent about 600 on a new PC with (basically) i7 processor, 16Gb RAM and 2Tb HDD. So, when I got my D800 in March, there was no problem speed-wise.

I haven't put a stopwatch on it recently but, in basic impressionistic terms, it runs as fast with 36Mb D800 lossless compressed Raw files in Lightroom 4.1 and Photohop CS6 as my previous 4-year old PC did with 16Mb D3s Raw files in the previous versions of those programmes.

Yes, if I come home with a 32Gb SD Card almost full (not a common occurrence - I rarely take more than a few dozen exposures on an outing), I have to go and make a cup of coffee while Lightroom imports them.

My more recent upgrade to the PC set-up was to equip it with twin 27" Dell U2711 monitors. That really has made photo-processing a more pleasurable experience.
18 Sep 2012 3:17PM
I see you can get some 64GB flash drives really cheap now. Problem is they are usually USB 2 and transferring large files on to them takes an eon. With the increase in MP and hence filesize the coming of USB 3 is very timely. Firewire is also an option (although i have never used it). I have a Vista 32 bit machine and find it ok for most tasks. File transfer speed on to external media is an issue and i am considering getting a USB 3 card and a USB 3 flash disk. My current camera (Canon 60D) puts out pretty hefty files and i'm noticing the increase in time taken to transfer files over my old 30D. You might as well go away and have several cups of tea if you are transferring lots of pictures onto external memory.

I think a relatively good spec Vista machine is still quite capable of handling large files without a problem. If you are really fussy about speed then go for an i5 or i7 64 bit machine. As fas as i have heard, Windows 8 isn't that great.
LenShepherd 10 3.6k United Kingdom
18 Sep 2012 5:16PM
Leftforum - thanks for helping clarify what can do the job.

Quote:As fas as i have heard, Windows 8 isn't that great.

Windows 8 has the attraction of supporting the PC equivalent of the faster thunderbolt.
Thunderbolt is not a Mac only product - I am guessing lots more external drives with USB 3/thunderbolt by the year end.
After Windows 8 launch the choice would include old operating systems at reduced prices.
geffers7 Plus
7 51 1 United Kingdom
18 Sep 2012 5:49PM
I've just got a D800 but I prepared for it by upgrading my RAM to 8GB - the hard drive is 500GB and the rest of the system was new last year (to a spec suggested by a member on here!)
Downloading from the memory card takes a while - I typically have 60/70 shots from a shoot - so maybe about 5 mins.
I processed using LR4.1 which was almost instantaneous but now with LR4.2RC each action takes considerably longer - hope this is resolved when the final release is made.
theorderingone 14 2.4k
18 Sep 2012 6:06PM
If your laptop has an expresscard slot, you can add USB 3 quite easily. Just load the drivers, plug in the card and away you go. It's what I've done wiht my current laptop. I use a Lexar USB reader though.

A PCI or PCIexpress card should do the trick for a desktop computer.
miptog 12 3.6k 61 United Kingdom
18 Sep 2012 7:18PM

Quote:maybe the new bodies are running ahead of the computers and hard drives most currently own

Think this is so very true, let alone some of the software having to catch up to.

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