Hardware recommendations


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  • #29677
    atognarelli
    Participant

    I have a very old Macbook pro that definitely does not cut it anymore. I can barely run an empty Photos library and forget about the handover to Raw Power. It takes about 5 minutes to switch over to the Raw Power editing controls.

    I would like to upgrade to a newer Macbook and am considering the Macbook Air, but not sure if it will cut it. In the past I did use Lightroom, but ended up letting that subscription go. I do photography as a pass time, but still have a large collection and want to know if using a setup of photos/raw power will work well on a recent Macbook Air or does it require something more powerful and with a GPU.

    I often use Raw format as well (if that makes a difference in the recommendations).

    Thanks in advance.

    #29687
    Nik Bhatt
    Keymaster

    Hi,

    This is a very good question. RAW Power heavily uses the GPU. The app uses the GPU to decode the RAW, for all adjustments, and to export images. So, a strong, modern GPU is essential for this app. The recent integrated Intel GPUs are decent, but not as good as the newer discrete GPUs found in the 15 inch MacBook Pros and other higher-end machines. I suggest trying out a few machines at a retailer or Apple Store. To do that, take some RAW files (the largest ones you have) and open them in Photos and/or Preview to see how those apps fare (they don’t work quite the same way, but adjustments in Photos also uses the GPU).

    I hope this helps.

    –Nik

    #29704
    TN Args
    Participant

    I assume the iOS version is not so processor-intensive?

    #29706
    Nik Bhatt
    Keymaster

    The iOS version is also completely GPU dependent. However, Apple’s RAW for iOS is tuned for iOS GPUs, and iOS screen sizes are often smaller than Mac screens.

    #29813
    atognarelli
    Participant

    Thank you for the quick response. I will take that advice when I go shopping for a new device.

    Great work you’ve done here with this product.

    #50779
    BeakedWhale101
    Participant

    Another new user here. So far very impressed with the RAW conversions from OLY files (not quite as good as OLY’s new Workspace but very close and more practice might make perfect. But Workspace is unusably slow anyway so it’s a no starter). I’m working on a recent Mac Mini and speed is easily acceptable, so all credit to your team, but my question is, would RAWPower take advantage of an external GPU attached to Mini by Thunderbolt3 and, if so, would it only take advantage of the Apple certified eGPU combinations or might it work more widely?

    #50796
    Nik Bhatt
    Keymaster

    I’m glad you like the app’s RAW conversions. When eGPUs were initially being supported, I did get a chance to test them a little bit with RAW Power. At that time, the only device we could connect was a MacBook Pro (because T-bolt 3 was not common on Macs). As I recall, RAW Power automatically used the eGPU when present, because for the most part, it lets Apple’s RAW engine decide which GPU to use.

    The overall experience was that the eGPU wasn’t meaningfully faster than the discrete GPU in a MBP. That’s primarily because Thunderbolt is not as fast as the bus for internal GPUs, and the amount of data moving back and forth is quite large. However, (and I’m speculating here) it should be faster than an integrated GPU like the one in a Mini.

    Again, my testing was limited to what Apple provided me at the time. Because the performance was not exciting, I did not end up investing in an eGPU for myself.

    Long story short, given that it was a while ago and the time spent relatively small, my answer is “probably” for the first question (does it work with an eGPU) and “maybe” for the second (will it work with any eGPU). Sorry I don’t have a more definitive answer.

    #51560
    BeakedWhale101
    Participant

    Thanks for the answer. Speed is easily acceptable with just the integrated GPU anyway, so no hurry. Clearly a luxury but, if I splash out and buy one, I’ll do some measurements and let you know. On the software itself can I suggest some guidance on recommended workflow (eg curves or RAW Boost first??) and a bit more information on exactly what the controls are doing (eg is “Sharpen” an Unsharp Mask and how does it differ from RAW Sharpen?). Also, is there currently a way of “fixing” zoom level so consecutive photos display the same value. Also, at least with my hardware, the inheritance of a cropping-box from a copied set of edit values behaves in a strange way, not obeying my first set of corner-drag manipulations unless I first change the length-width ratio. Am I missing something or is it a bug? Looking forward to the next release.

    John

    #51576
    Nik Bhatt
    Keymaster

    A good way to adjust an image is to work in phases.

    Phase 1: corrective: noise reduction, over exposure (Boost + Recovery), white balance
    Phase 2: enhancement: lighten / deepen, contrast, curves / levels / saturation, sharpen, etc.
    Phase 3: creative: vignette, black and white, etc.

    That said, crop can be corrective or creative. Curves can be used for over expose and color balance, so it can be in different phases too. Sometimes people start in black and white and work from there. In v3, Auto Enhance is a good way to start because it will apply adjustments that are both corrective and enhancing.

    Sharpen is a luminance oriented sharpen. It is not the same as unsharp mask because it will not sharpen color noise. RAW Sharpen is like a capture level sharpen – it’s pretty limited but takes place as part of the decode. Definition is a local contrast type of sharpening.

    Currently zoom level cannot be fixed between images. I got that request from another customer recently, so it’s on the list to do at some point. I don’t understand what you mean about the crop box, but you can email a video if you like to support@gentlemencoders.com.

    • This reply was modified 6 months ago by Nik Bhatt.
    #51793
    BeakedWhale101
    Participant

    Thanks again. I’ll try to put something together on the crop box.

    I am also having trouble on resizing in the Export dialogue. If I type in a long-axis custom size 2x the original size it still exports to the original size.

    #51799
    Nik Bhatt
    Keymaster

    Sorry – the app does not have the ability to up-scale. That requires specialized code to maintain sharpness, etc.

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