configuring a new laptop PC

Community Beginner ,
Jul 19, 2022 Jul 19, 2022

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I'm shopping a new laptop and was wondering which do's and don't's are important.

I would start with 16 GB of RAM, an Intel i7 (not sure which one) and at least 1/2 TB of SSL memory.

I'm very unsure about the benefits of a graphics card.  One might assume that being a very graphical (vs. textual) application, more would help here, but I recall reading somewhere that this wasn't necessarily true..

 

Links to published benchmarks would be appreciated as well as personal views based on experience.

 

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LEGEND ,
Jul 19, 2022 Jul 19, 2022

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Is this a question related to Lightroom Classic? You don't really say.

 

If your new laptop has a 4K monitor, then you need a good graphics card to go with it. If it has <4K monitor, probably a lower end graphics card is all you need. I would in either case go for the fastest CPU you can afford. (Note: these statements apply to Lightroom Classic only, other software may have different requirements)

 

What is "SSL memory"?

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Community Beginner ,
Jul 19, 2022 Jul 19, 2022

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Thanks. 

I meant to say "SSL storage" - which is solid state storage instead of traditional disc storage.  Loads much, much faster.

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Contributor ,
Jul 19, 2022 Jul 19, 2022

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@Newmarket2 

Much depends on your needs and your budget.

 

For instance I find myself now in need to upgrade but photography is my "job" so I need the best specs possible to do heavy edits, mange thousandths of photos, printing, etc...

You might be happy and satisfied to work with a "lower specs"  machine than the one that I/we could suggest you.

 

.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jul 19, 2022 Jul 19, 2022

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As others have mentioned, this really depends on your personal needs. For me, because I work on large files, I run a minimum of 64 GB of RAM and a much higher amount of storage.

Perhaps you can share situations, and perhaps we can offer better specifics.

warmly/j

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Community Beginner ,
Jul 19, 2022 Jul 19, 2022

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More specifics, then....

I am not a professional and I seldom print my images.  I've got around 23k pictures in my catalog.  My largest files are around 33MB (.NEF) but most are under 30MB. 

So, casual amateur mostly working for my own pleasure. 

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Contributor ,
Jul 19, 2022 Jul 19, 2022

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@Newmarket2 

 

Well then I think you would be good with 32gb of Ram it would give you more room for the future (16gb is really the bare minimum to survive IMO)

If you store you photos internally the go for SSD (4TB) but those are expensive.

 

Perhaps chose a smaller internal SSD (1tb) and then for much, much less, buy a good 4tb external HDD.

You don't want to lose your photos so in case buy 2 HDD or but and inexpensive Backblaze cloud storage license (I recommend this one to all Professional and not)

 

Monitor wise 4k to me is still a better choice...in case you can watch good movies on the laptop.

 

GPU you are looking at 6-8Gb with 4k

 

Brand wise Dell allows, in most cases, to customize your Laptop with your desired configuration so it it's a good choice of brand (also check Asus)

 

.

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LEGEND ,
Jul 19, 2022 Jul 19, 2022

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A better number would be to tell us your RAW image sizes in megaPIXELs and not megabytes.

 

For most actions, RAM is not a bottleneck in LrC, 16GB is fine for LrC (exception: panoramas or HDR). However, depending on other software you use on your computer, that 16GB may not be enough.

 

If you are going to store your photos on an external HD, then 1/2 TB SSD as the internal drive is fine; if you are going to need to store your photos on the internal drive (perhaps because you want to use LrC while travelling with your laptop), the 1/2 TB for the internal drive seems kind of tiny.

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Contributor ,
Jul 19, 2022 Jul 19, 2022

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@dj_paige 

 

Lr already saturates my 16gb of RAM: it is absolutely not enough.

 

I have observed Lr using 90% of available memory doing nothing, simply standing idle.

LR is not exactly memory efficient.

 

.

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LEGEND ,
Jul 19, 2022 Jul 19, 2022

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Okay, I have the opposite experience. In theory, LrC is not memory intensive, memory is rarely a bottleneck. Perhaps it isn't working right for you. (Unless you are doing a lot of panoramas or HDRs...)

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Contributor ,
Jul 19, 2022 Jul 19, 2022

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@dj_paige 

 

It's Masking, local edits that are problematic for Lr.

It is still the one area where much needs to be done/improved and where ACR is definitely superior (performance wise).

 

.

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LEGEND ,
Jul 19, 2022 Jul 19, 2022

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It's Masking, local edits that are problematic for Lr.


These should affect CPU or GPU utilization, not memory utilization.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jul 19, 2022 Jul 19, 2022

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@Newmarket2 wrote:

So, casual amateur mostly working for my own pleasure. 


 

For a Windows PC, a starting point would be a 12th generation Intel Core (or AMD equivalent) CPU, with 16GB RAM, and enough internal SSD storage so that there’s always at least roughly 100GB of free space for caches and such. (Originals can be stored on external USB 3 storage, if you don’t mind having to plug it in when you want to work on photos.) If budget allows, 32GB RAM and then a discrete GPU with at least 4GB VRAM would be the next steps up, but those might not be needed for casual use.

 

The reason for the 12th gen Intel CPU is that it’s a significant jump in mobile CPU+graphics performance and battery efficiency from previous generations. That jump would keep the machine useful for a few more years compared to earlier generations.

 


@Newmarket2 wrote:

I'm very unsure about the benefits of a graphics card.


 

In the past, Lighroom Classic used graphics hardware mostly for the Develop module and a few other features such as interactive zooming. Adobe just added GPU acceleration for exporting in version 11.4; if they keep adding GPU acceleration to more features then the GPU will become more important in the future. But we don’t know what their real plans are.

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Community Beginner ,
Jul 20, 2022 Jul 20, 2022

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LATEST

I ran into trouble with Dell and with Asus.  They seem less configurable than I found them to be in the past.

Wondering if anyone might recommend a maker (Windows) that is highly configurable and not off-the-charts expensive?

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