Computer Upgrade

Joined
Jan 3, 2007
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Tacoma, WA
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Ken St John
My current MBP is the first Apple computer I've owned in a long time, and lasted nearly six years from its manufacturing date (it was four years old when I bought it refurbished). My experience convinces me that Apple laptops last two to three times longer than comparable Windows machines. I know that iMacs similarly outperform similarly equipped Windows desktop machines and have high hopes for the Mini in that regard too.
Not sure if it's too late but did you look into trading in your 15" MBP to Apple? I just ordered a M1 MB Air and I traded my '15 MBP Retina in for $460! Brought the cost of a couple of upgrades way down!!

FWIW - I had the opportunity to configure a new M1 Air for a client a couple of weeks ago and was simply blown away. It's probably a combination of the "computer on a chip" plus a SSD, but everything was fast! Since my client doesn't do any photo work, I didn't bave a chance to see what LR is like ... but Photos was blazingly fast, once the originals downloaded!!

Cheers!!

Ken
 
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Joined
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Ken St John
Since Mike has raised the question, here is my thinking. I have both PC and Mac. Nowadays there is very little difference in the internal components and their intrinsic life. Both have highly reliable operating systems that do what is needed - i.e. allowing one to run a wonderful range of software.

People who think PCs have a short life usually are thinking back to their experience many years ago when each generation of Windows took more computer power. And you do get what you pay for - the cheapest under-spec machine won't last long.

For the last 20 years all my PC computers are required (by me) to run for at least 10 years and that has always been achieved, although over 10 years ago in one case a new power supply was required and in another case a new graphics card. That's the four desktops. My Acer laptop is coming up to its 11th birthday. It has been all over the world with me, and like the others, runs the latest Windows version and the latest application versions with no problems.

The issue with Macs, other than high prices, is the limited time that older models can run the latest version of macOS, so they get left behind and are called "legacy" by Apple. In some cases hackers have got those old machines working with new versions of macOS, demonstrating that Apple has simply allowed them to become obsolete - this upsets me as we should be trying to keep things running and not just throwing perfectly good stuff away - and I'm far from being a green extremist. Without running a recent version of macOS they lose security updates and in some cases other software companies introduce updates which require a version of macOS they cannot install. Of course how important this is depends greatly on the type of user. For some an old machine doing emails and web browsing is perfect for a very long time, and I'm sure there are Macs running that are 20 years old. Macs are not good at backward compatibility, whereas PCs can run pretty much all software published since 1995.

If you can afford it, Macs are beautiful and fun, and with a new machine every few years you will have regular improvements to enjoy.
My luck with Windows PCs at client's offices is a little worse than this. Most are pretty much dead at around the 5 year point. Either overcome by hardware issues or outmoded by new software requirements. Of course these machines generally run 24/7/365 so they have far more hours on them than a home user.

You're generally correct about updated OS's on Macs, however they still do update older versions. I have a 9 year old MB Air which just received a 2GB "security update". It also runs every piece of software I use on my newer Macs without issue ... plus I can still run Aperture just for old times sake!!

Ken
 
Joined
Nov 29, 2012
Messages
121
Location
Port Orchard, WA
I've been doing almost all of my computer work on a 15-inch MacBook Pro (2015) with a 2.8 GHz Quad Core i7, 16GB RAM, and 2TB SSD for the last couple years. I do have a fairly powerful Windows PC, but it is quite a nuisance going back and forth between operating systems (on many levels), so my entire photography workflow is on the laptop, even while at home. I do use GoodSync to maintain my LR catalog and raw files on multiple locations (MBP, Windows machine, and an external drive), and I am familiar with sharing a LR catalog between computers, but don't do so at the moment because of the different file structures used on Win and MacOS computers.

Frequent travel makes the laptop a must, so I'll keep the old MBP for that, but it would be nice to have a bit more capability while at home, so I'm considering the purchase of an iMac (and retiring the Windows machine) so I can seamlessly switch from laptop to desktop. I'm seeking advice and suggestions from people who hand off their work between a laptop and desktop on a regular basis.
I'm also in the hunt and am researching the new Mac mini or may just wait for the M1 chip added to the 15" MacBook Pros.
 
Joined
Mar 25, 2011
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London
I don’t know if anyone missed the news this year that new Windows would no longer run on “old” Intel processors.
Pretty much forcing hardware upgrades.
I’ll try to find the link.
Or was it the other way around? New processors will only work with Windows 10.
 
Joined
Jan 22, 2019
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Jupiter, FL
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Andy
Not sure if it's too late but did you look into trading in your 15" MBP to Apple? I just ordered a M1 MB Air and I traded my '15 MBP Retina in for $460! Brought the cost of a couple of upgrades way down!!
I actually considered trading in my MBP and was offered a similar credit towards purchase of a mini (which I ended up just paying for out of pocket). I decided to keep the MBP and will probably trade it towards an Air next year. Hopefully it will still be worth something when I do.
 
Joined
Dec 30, 2007
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499
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Connecticut
I have 2 MBPs, one a 2019 15” and the other a 2017 13” that I use for travel. I also have a 2009 ( not a typo) iMac that still runs great.

I would definitely look at the iMacs, they really last a long time.
 
Joined
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So, after a week with the new Mac mini, I am quite satisfied. It is fast and very silent. I haven't heard the fan come on at all, even when it's rendering a big change in PhotoShop. Also, data transfer is much faster than the MBP, thanks to the Thunderbolt 3 USB-C connection. I have seen speeds in excess of 1GB/sec at times.

On that note, does anyone know of a USB C hub that has an XQD card slot? I know they are made with SD card slots, but it would be nice to have both without fiddling with USB A card readers.
 
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What sort of monitor are you using with the Mini?
Asus PB287Q

It is a 28-inch (odd size) with 4K, 10-bit, 60Hz, which I have been using for the last couple years on a Windows machine. Not sure if there's anything significantly better than it without spending more than $1000. But I'm open to suggestions.
 
Joined
Sep 16, 2005
Messages
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Auburn, Washington USA
Nuts! I replaced my Mini (Late 2012) last year with the then current model. Kinda wished I had waited. The 2012 Mini has replaced a 11" Macbook Air, both dual boot, running Win10 for my ham radio stuff. At least that SW is really speedy now.
 
Joined
Jan 22, 2019
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Andy
Nuts! I replaced my Mini (Late 2012) last year with the then current model. Kinda wished I had waited. The 2012 Mini has replaced a 11" Macbook Air, both dual boot, running Win10 for my ham radio stuff. At least that SW is really speedy now.
Luckily, I bought my refurbished 2015 MBP recently enough that I didn’t have any appetite to upgrade my desktop until just now. Turns out I waited just long enough to get the M1 chip, which looks to be a significant step forward from the Intel based CPU architecture. Serendipity.
 
Joined
Oct 9, 2005
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28,579
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Moscow, Idaho
Are you getting faster reading during uploads (when compared to USB 3.0 with the USB A connector)?
As far as I can tell. I should measure it . . . someday.
Well, interesting.
I shot 55 NEFs on my Z6 (~26 MBs each) and downloaded the (Sony XQD reader and Nikon Transfer 2) to my MBP. Once with the Amazon Basics USB-C data cable, and once with the original USB-A cable + non-name hub. Identical speeds for both, about 8.5 seconds, total.
Well, the cable alone is less cumbersome!
 
Joined
Jan 22, 2019
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Andy
I happened to take a ton of exposures last night in an effort to photograph the Geminid meteor shower, so I just tested a couple card reader combos by reading 21GB of files. Results:
  1. XQD/SD card reader (made by "Cateck") with its permanently attached USB-C cable connected to a Thunderbolt 3 port on the mini (210MB/s)
  2. A Lexar XQD card reader connected via a USB 3.0 hub to a USB-A port on the mini (170MB/s which is about the same as Nick achieved)
  3. XQD/SD card reader (made by "Cateck" connected via a no-name USB-C to A adapter and the same connections as in #2 (35MB/s)
Thoughts:
  • None of the methods achieves the 440MB/s claimed for the Lexar 2933x card itself.
  • The no-name USB-C to -A adapter is a significant bottleneck. Perhaps it is defective.
 

Growltiger

Administrator
Administrator
Joined
Apr 26, 2008
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Up in the hills, Gloucestershire, UK
When you bought the no-name USB-C to -A adapter did it claim to be USB 3 or 3.1. I suspect it didn't and is only USB 2.
The excuse is that these cables are sold for people who want to simply charge USB-C devices. You have to check the specs carefully as a connector alone is not enough. Is the cable a thin cheap looking cable?
 

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