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Thread started 08 Dec 2017 (Friday) 13:25
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Which Ultrabook/ small laptop for editing large RAW files?

 
Rodreguez
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Post has been last edited 1 month ago by Rodreguez. 2 edits done in total.
Dec 08, 2017 13:25 |  #1

*No Apples pls*

So, I've been looking at various laptops and am going a bit insane. I need a smaller laptop as I've been having trouble flying with my 17" one, so I'm looking at getting something as small and compact as possible that still packs a punch. (I basically don't want to be waiting 5 minutes for a filter to render).

First consideration was an Asus Zenbook UX330 which looked beautiful but with only 8GB of RAM and no dedicated Graphics card seemed like it'd struggle with Canon 5DMKIII RAW files.

So it looked like I might have to spend a bit more.

I've looked at various that nearly fit the bill but are too big such as a great powerful one from Chillblast but at 14" and with quite the bezel it wasn't quite small enough.

My budget has been creeping up and up until I'm now considering a full spec Dell XPS 13 at £1500, which is of great merit because it's the smallest 13" book and hardly has any bezel, making it super compact for flight but even that doesn't have a quad core processor.

Can anyone shed any light on this? Experience with any of the aforementioned models or other suggestions? I know answers will be subjective but I'm hoping this will help in some way.

Spec I'm guessing I need (I also produce music on a laptop when not at home)

intel i7
16GB RAM
512SSD
Whatever else

Thanks in advance


R


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shocolite
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Dec 08, 2017 15:31 |  #2

Hi, many smaller/portable laptops are going down the route of being smaller & more power efficient than previous generations. Very few (none I think) of the portable sub 14" laptops have quad-core processors - you have to look at the high end, namely gaming laptops for pure processor crunching and they usually are of the larger/heavier size.

You are going to find it a struggle - with light/portable laptops there will be trade-offs.

The nearest that I know of that would fit your specs listed would be a Microsoft Surface Pro/Book (can't remember exactly) with Performance base but this costs something like £2500.

All the best in your hunting!


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Rodreguez
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Dec 08, 2017 16:51 |  #3

shocolite wrote in post #18513643 (external link)
Hi, many smaller/portable laptops are going down the route of being smaller & more power efficient than previous generations. Very few (none I think) of the portable sub 14" laptops have quad-core processors - you have to look at the high end, namely gaming laptops for pure processor crunching and they usually are of the larger/heavier size.

You are going to find it a struggle - with light/portable laptops there will be trade-offs.

The nearest that I know of that would fit your specs listed would be a Microsoft Surface Pro/Book (can't remember exactly) with Performance base but this costs something like £2500.

All the best in your hunting!

Hey! Thanks for the great response. Obviously the surface book Pro is far too expensive for me. If it were you, what would be the trade off? Assuming one had to keep it sub 14"? XPS 13? Or maybe the 12.5" Zenbook?

Assuming 8GB just isn't enough RAM for relatively quick renders.....


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SYS
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Dec 08, 2017 17:17 |  #4

Rodreguez wrote in post #18513575 (external link)
Spec I'm guessing I need (I also produce music on a laptop when not at home)

intel i7
16GB RAM
512SSD
Whatever else

R

Just recently purchased an XPS 13 with the same specs with the 8th Gen i7 Core for the same reason you stated. I flew with it to San Diego and edited some photos I took while there with my 5DIII. Flying with this beauty was a pleasure and so convenient. The battery lasts more than 9 hours.

The only bad experience with it, however, was that there were quite a bit of lag during PS editing. I'm not sure whether the HP Envy 13, which I was also considering before settling for the XPS 13, would eliminate the lagging issues with its dedicated 2GB graphics card (Dell XPS 13 comes with an integrated graphics card). If so, I'd exchange for that, instead, since everything else between the XPS 13 and the HP Envy 13 are almost identical in specs. Does anyone know whether the integrated vs. dedicated 2GB graphics card could make a significant difference in eliminating the lagging issue?



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Rodreguez
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Dec 08, 2017 20:23 |  #5

SYS wrote in post #18513689 (external link)
Just recently purchased an XPS 13 with the same specs with the 8th Gen i7 Core for the same reason you stated. I flew with it to San Diego and edited some photos I took while there with my 5DIII. Flying with this beauty was a pleasure and so convenient. The battery lasts more than 9 hours.

The only bad experience with it, however, was that there were quite a bit of lag during PS editing. I'm not sure whether the HP Envy 13, which I was also considering before settling for the XPS 13, would eliminate the lagging issues with its dedicated 2GB graphics card (Dell XPS 13 comes with an integrated graphics card). If so, I'd exchange for that, instead, since everything else between the XPS 13 and the HP Envy 13 are almost identical in specs. Does anyone know whether the integrated vs. dedicated 2GB graphics card could make a significant difference in eliminating the lagging issue?

That's interesting. I certainly don't want significant lag during editing, especially if I'm paying £1500 or more for a laptop.

Somebody pointed me to this article. It doesn't mention photography, rather gaming but I can only assume with my limited computer tech knowledge that a dedicated graphics card will influence the speed of processing in both:

http://www.toptenrevie​ws.com ...integrated-vs.-dedicated/ (external link)

I've not heard of the HP Envy 13. I'll take a look, thanks. I've always had HP, ever since I had a laptop, so it would be nice if it's the real deal.


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davesrose
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Post has been edited 1 month ago by davesrose.
Dec 08, 2017 22:04 as a reply to Rodreguez's post |  #6

Photo editing is not the same as game playing. Modern games are very GPU intensive: they are 3D generated: their software sends data to the graphics card to display 3D objects. and for larger environments with more detail: it requires a beefier GPU and more video RAM. Video rendering is better optimized for rendering across multicore CPUs (using programs like Adobe Premiere, AfterEffects, or Media Encoder). LR and Photoshop, however, are not so much optimized for multicores as clock speed. The main thing I'd look for in processor is that the min clock speed isn't too slow. So you need to start including the actual model number of the i7 processor you're looking at. A couple months ago, I got a Lenovo Yoga 720 15" with i7 7700HQ 2.8GHZ quad core CPU: it seems good for both Photoshop and video. It's supposed to be able to turboboost to 3.7GHZ. Recently there's been Gen 8 i7s coming out that are quad core, but have fairly low base clock speeds. The other issue is that your laptop may not have turboboost enabled, or the computer brand has reduced the voltage so that the CPU won't overheat in a smaller form factor. There are some resources around for trying programs like TS Obsidian, which will let you try increasing boost speeds (BUT BE FOREWARNED: read as much as you can, and don't overclock as much to overheat your processor)


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Rodreguez
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Dec 09, 2017 00:51 |  #7

davesrose wrote in post #18513796 (external link)
Photo editing is not the same as game playing. Modern games are very GPU intensive: they are 3D generated: their software sends data to the graphics card to display 3D objects. and for larger environments with more detail: it requires a beefier GPU and more video RAM. Video rendering is better optimized for rendering across multicore CPUs (using programs like Adobe Premiere, AfterEffects, or Media Encoder). LR and Photoshop, however, are not so much optimized for multicores as clock speed. The main thing I'd look for in processor is that the min clock speed isn't too slow. So you need to start including the actual model number of the i7 processor you're looking at. A couple months ago, I got a Lenovo Yoga 720 15" with i7 7700HQ 2.8GHZ quad core CPU: it seems good for both Photoshop and video. It's supposed to be able to turboboost to 3.7GHZ. Recently there's been Gen 8 i7s coming out that are quad core, but have fairly low base clock speeds. The other issue is that your laptop may not have turboboost enabled, or the computer brand has reduced the voltage so that the CPU won't overheat in a smaller form factor. There are some resources around for trying programs like TS Obsidian, which will let you try increasing boost speeds (BUT BE FOREWARNED: read as much as you can, and don't overclock as much to overheat your processor)

Woah that's some high tech stuff there. So in a nutshell more important even than 16gb of Ram is an i7 with the longest number after it you'd say? And a quad core one?


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Archibald
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Dec 09, 2017 01:27 |  #8

I don't use PS but my Dell XPS 13" works great with LR. It has a Core i5‐6200U processor, 256 GB SSD, and 8 GB RAM. Wonderful laptop.


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John ­ from ­ PA
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Dec 09, 2017 06:21 |  #9

shocolite wrote in post #18513643 (external link)
Hi, many smaller/portable laptops are going down the route of being smaller & more power efficient than previous generations. Very few (none I think) of the portable sub 14" laptops have quad-core processors - you have to look at the high end, namely gaming laptops for pure processor crunching and they usually are of the larger/heavier size.

Dell announced a quad core XPS 13 back in August with availability in September and a few others have followed. See https://www.forbes.com ...dell-lenovo/#2d23f31e2baa (external link) for a summary of what is out there.




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davesrose
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Dec 09, 2017 09:34 as a reply to Rodreguez's post |  #10

Yes, with PS, look more for clock speed over quad core if all other things equal. 16 GB is good if you intend to do a lot of layering of full resolution images.


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Rodreguez
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Dec 09, 2017 09:59 |  #11

davesrose wrote in post #18513997 (external link)
Yes, with PS, look more for clock speed over quad core if all other things equal. 16 GB is good if you intend to do a lot of layering of full resolution images.

Oh yes, lots of layering. And layering of external filters as well. Sounds like 16GB is a must.


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SYS
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Dec 09, 2017 10:10 |  #12

Although both XPS 13 and HP Envy 13 come with 16GB RAM, their clock speed is low at 1.8GHz which, if I understand it correctly, contributes to the lag issues while PS editing?



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Wilt
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Post has been edited 1 month ago by Wilt.
Dec 09, 2017 10:22 |  #13

Rodreguez wrote in post #18513859 (external link)
Woah that's some high tech stuff there. So in a nutshell more important even than 16gb of Ram is an i7 with the longest number after it you'd say? And a quad core one?

Editing programs like PS and LR are not necessarily written to take advantage of MULTIPLE CORES...that is useful primarily if you are running simultaneous applications at the same time (like web surfing while waiting for RAW conversion of hundreds of photos).

Your main interest for graphics editing is CLOCK SPEED.

And editing programs CAN make use of SOME graphics acceleration (which usually comes in the form of add-on cards that plug onto the motherboard of most desktop PCs

The problem with clock speed in a laptop is that is makes HEAT and it consumes BATTERY faster...which is counter to what laptops want to do (not make heat, not shorten battery life)


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davesrose
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Post has been edited 1 month ago by davesrose.
Dec 09, 2017 10:34 as a reply to SYS's post |  #14

It could be: as I indicated earlier, sometimes computer brands disable Turboboost to prevent overheating. Or the drivers aren't being fully utilized for turboboost.

Is the lag with brushes or filters? I'd first try experimenting with Photoshop preferences to see if you can eliminate lag:

Eliminate Photoshop Lag (external link)

Photoshop CC 2017 Unusually Slow (external link)

If trying all the above suggestions doesn't improve anything, then I would look at CPU utilization. Last result would be trying a program like TS Obsidian to see what your computer's CPU settings are.


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SYS
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Dec 09, 2017 10:53 |  #15

davesrose wrote in post #18514045 (external link)
It could be: as I indicated earlier, sometimes computer brands disable Turboboost to prevent overheating. Or the drivers aren't being fully utilized for turboboost.

Is the lag with brushes or filters? I'd first try experimenting with Photoshop preferences to see if you can eliminate lag:

Eliminate Photoshop Lag (external link)

Photoshop CC 2017 Unusually Slow (external link)

If trying all the above suggestions doesn't improve anything, then I would look at CPU utilization. Last result would be trying a program like TS Obsidian to see what your computer's CPU settings are.

Thanks for the links and the suggestions for the remedy. I first noticed the lag when I was using the clone tool in my PS4. The lag worsened with each edit. I've already adjusted the settings in the Preference but with no palpable improvements, so I'll try other suggestions.



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