What Computer Hardware Do Real Estate Photographers Need?

HardwareLast week Andy in Aurora, CO asked me the following:

“I’m looking into buying a new PC. Have you done any research or polls on what system requirements work best for real estate processing applications. I’m thinking about something that would allow me to run Photomatix and Lightroom at the same time, and still do some uploading of images in the background. Recommendations on processor, video/graphics card, and RAM would be helpful. Also, ideas on pricing out such a system.”

Here is my answer:

  • Essential: Don’t skimp on the amount of RAM you get. In the overall scheme of things RAM is cheap and generally makes more difference that the speed of your processor. I always get 16 gig of RAM on any machine I buy. Maybe you could get by with 12 gig, I don’t know. But with 16 gig RAM there is NEVER any memory issues. I’ve tried 8 gig, and that’s not enough for Lightroom to perform well all the time.
  • Not essential but really makes life easier:
    • SSD drive: My last desktop I got with a 250 gig SSD drive ( 250 gig of RAM that that looks to the OS like a disk). Wow! I’ll never buy another computer without one! Instant booting and instant everything else.
    • Top of the line graphics card: My understanding is that while Photoshop  and Adobe Premier Pro use GPU acceleration Lightroom 4 does not. So a lot depends on specifically which software you use.
    • High Quality 27″ or 30″ monitor: Get two if you can afford it. Lightroom works really nicely with dual monitors. You get what you pay for here. I have a $1,000 monitor sitting along side a $400 monitor and the cheap one looks crappy while the $1000 one knocks my socks off.

I didn’t give Andy any specific recommendations because I don’t focus much on PC hardware and I knew you gentle readers would have plenty of detail advice for Andy. What do you think?

Source Article from http://photographyforrealestate.net/2013/05/19/what-computer-hardware-do-real-estate-photographers-need/