A couple of months ago I wrote about the amount of power that I perceived that I needed in a computer in order to efficiently edit images. Shortly after that I saw a Mac with an M1 Max processor in action converting batches of RAW files and I decided that I’d order a Mac Studio a couple of days later. I went for the base model with a 512Gb SSD and 32Gb of RAM for two reasons; the first of which was that it was easily going to be powerful enough for even the chunkiest RAW files and the second was that it was the only model that had any chance of being delivered in time for the heavy batch of editing that I am now in the middle of.
How fast is it then? Well I did a simple (and simplistic) test with a batch of RAW files from a variety of cameras with some reasonably complex adjustments both with the new Studio and with my older 15″ MacBook Pro which has been my go-to machine for almost five years. There are all sorts of variables which could effect the result but this is what the stopwatch told me:
2017 MacBook Pro: 1 minute and 52 seconds
2022 Mac Studio: 38 seconds
That’s quite a difference and I am noticing lots of areas where the new machine is much better and a few where the difference is way smaller. The big advantage apart from converting files a lot quicker is when you are spotting dust in Adobe Camera RAW on files. The older computer used to pause for two or three seconds between them whereas the new one does them virtually instantly. If a picture has twenty dust spots that a massive time (and frustration) saving.
I will write more when I have been using the Studio for longer but at this moment I’m pretty please with my (£1999 inc VAT) investment.