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Updated Photoshop PC Buying Guide, Notes On laptop, Drobo etc.

19th June 2012 General Articles

Updated Photoshop PC buying guide

Firstly – I have recently updated our very popular PCs for Photoshop guide – the systems are bang up to date with the latest and greatest parts, and are quicker & better value than ever. After the pathetic updates to the MacPro line just released by Apple – well, it’s ever clearer that Apple simply don’t build good, powerful machines for imaging work any more. If you want a killer Lightroom/Photoshop/Capture one rig – follow our guide to save thousands and get a blazingly fast machine built specifically to be very fast with imaging work.

A new laptop & fixing Intel graphics ICC profile issues

In other IT news, I have recently updated my personal laptop – I have a shiny new Samsung Series 9 (2012) Ultrabook. JB HiFI had 20% off making this just $1400 – amazingly cheap really – basically it’s a Macbook Air but a lot better – i7 Ivy Bridge, 128 GB blazingly fast SSD, 8 GB RAM, 15″ better-than-Air 1600 by 900 *matte* screen and very good cooling & fan, I’ve really yet to hear it make any noise – great chiclet keyboard and trackpad too.

It’s really an amazing bit of computer design and I am very happy with it. The screen is good for basic imaging tasks, and excellent for reading/email etc., but of course I wouldn’t do serious imaging work on it (or any laptop – I have my NEC PA271W at work for that, or my older Eizo Flexscan at home). One frustration – built in Intel graphics *still* have an issue with ICC profiles – to get them to work reliably after sleep etc., you must disable the Intel Common User Interface (igfxpers.exe) – to do this go to the start orb -> search -> type System Configuration and then under startup disable it. This has been a problem since at least 2007 so clearly Intel are not in a hurry to fix it. It’s a useless process anyway, so there’s no harm in doing this.

Drobo PR Disaster

Drobo have managed to lose a very important customer – Scott Kelby, very famous in the Photoshop world. It has to be said that while Drobo continue to have a fantastic ease of use advantage, we also dropped Drobo due to support issues & failure rates. I (and thus Image Science) have a very low tolerance for any products that cause hassles in real world professional use – and we’ve never been afraid to drop a product when it’s simply not good enough.

They did take some steps to improve support after our negative feedback, and things definitely improved, but we still simply got too many calls for help about them so we can no longer recommend them when there are so many other good options in this area.

It’s a shame as they do a lot right at the design end of things – but much like Apple (who they clearly copy in their approach to everything from packaging to PR) – the have paid so much attention to design & marketing that the basics of functionality and support at the professional end are simply not in place. And (also like Apple), they are quite successful compared to their peers with distinctly better products.

Feel free to ask for any digital asset management advice – obviously we deal with a lot of data at Image Science and we’ve never lost a file yet,