Best hardware for heavy workload

New Here ,
Feb 15, 2022 Feb 15, 2022

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Hi all,
We are increasingly working with Photoshop HR files with a file size of around 15GB and with many layers. Our current 2017 iMacs with 16GB ram are no longer sufficient. But it is quite difficult to determine whether a faster graphics card, a faster processor or more RAM would be more useful to us. Which part is more important when working with these large files? Because of the budget, I'd prefer to stay on an iMac rather than move to a Mac Pro.
 
Could someone from experience tell us more about this? What hardware do you use?
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Adobe Employee ,
Feb 15, 2022 Feb 15, 2022

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Hi Rob,

Thanks for reaching out. We are here to help!

 

We understand your workflow includes working on large documents. Hardware capacity might become an overhead quickly in these situations. Try optimizing Photoshop's performance to utilize the hardware to the fullest. Check this article: https://helpx.adobe.com/photoshop/kb/optimize-photoshop-cc-performance.html

 

Understandably, you might also have to upgrade the hardware in the longer run. Check the recommended system requirements, and that should give you the idea from here: https://helpx.adobe.com/photoshop/system-requirements.html

Please feel free to check with independent online benchmarks and reviews before making any purchase decisions.

 

We hope this helps. Let us know if it does.

Thanks!

Sameer K

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Feb 15, 2022 Feb 15, 2022

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What you need to consider is that Photoshop is mostly bandwidth-limited, not CPU limited. It handles a massive amount of data and this is what slows most people down. In addition, lots of functionality is handled by the GPU these days.

 

The single most important thing when working with large files is the scratch disk. Make sure you have plenty of space on a fast drive (NVMe). Without enough scratch disk space, Photoshop grinds to a halt.

 

For these file sizes, you should have at least 1 TB free space available.

 

As for RAM, there is no such thing as "enough" anyway. The scratch disk will carry the heavy load, while RAM is more of a cache to keep the flow going. Personally I think 64 should be enough, but go to 128 if you feel like it.

 

The GPU is becoming very important for overall functionality and performance, but on Mac this is all integrated in the M1 architecture and I'm not up to speed on that.

 

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New Here ,
Feb 18, 2022 Feb 18, 2022

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Thank you for your usefull input on this matter. We will wait for the new iMac Pro with M1 and 64 GB of Ram, that should do the job.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Feb 18, 2022 Feb 18, 2022

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An M1 Pro/Max MacBook Pro would be the ticket right now.

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