4 Replies Latest reply: May 2, 2013 3:52 AM by Eustace Mendis
Iron Princess Level 1 (0 points)



I'm going through some exciting times since I'm going to buy my first Mac (took me years of dedicated saving!).


My main hobby is photo editing and doing complex mixed media projects so of course I want the MacBook Pro WITH retina display.


A quick look into the specs learns that I have to choose among a version with an SSD of 256 GB or 512.

With the retina-upgrade and some additional RAM/video card (important since I almost live by the usage of photoshop filters), this is about as far as my budget stretches.

The upgrade to the 512 GB version would add an additional 300 euros to the bill which I, if I'm a bit sensible, can't afford.

But since I do a lot of photo projects, I fear that I'll run out of space quite fast.

My current Sony Vaio has a 512GB HDD and is filled up for 85%.


I have a NAS hooked up but this is for back-up purposes since I'm on the move a lot.

Working with an additional thunderbolt-connected external HDD seems impractical to me with the constant risk of damage and theft.


Has anyone some good advice for me?


Thanks a lot!

MacBook Pro with Retina display, OS X Mountain Lion (10.8.3)
  • hot_spur Level 4 (1,555 points)

    I'd wait a little longer until you can save for the aditional capacity. You cannot customize this computer afterwards, so whatever configuration you select, you are stuck with.

  • Eustace Mendis Level 7 (25,325 points)

    For photo editing / graphics type work, I consider an optimal set up as a fast computer with lots of RAM, a secondary hard drive for temporary use and a hard drive for back ups.


    Allow me please to suggest some ideas for your consideration:


    1. You need a back up drive. It is foolish to do serious work on a computer without a backup.

    2. You will need Mac software - Photoshop ? - that is not inexpensive.

    3. An external drive to serve as a scratch dis and for temporary storage.

  • Iron Princess Level 1 (0 points)



    You are absolutely right!


    As far as the back-up goes, I have it covered with a subscription to backblaze (backs up entire HDD continuously in the cloud) and a NAS, set up to do the same but locally. I daresay this should do the trick (although -knock on a wood- I haven't had any major meltdowns to recover from so far)


    For Photoshop I have a subscription to adobe's creative cloud. As a student, this comes fairly cheap compared to regular pricing.


    One last thing: what do you mean with 'scratch disk for temporary storage'? Up until now, I simply created a temp-folder on my HDD...


    Thanks already for your swift reply!

  • Eustace Mendis Level 7 (25,325 points)

    By default Photoshop creates a scratch disk - this is storage space on your boot drive that serves as "virtual memory". See this link for a full explanation:



    The point is that your boot drive does not have to the be scratch disk, if you have either a separate partition or a separate drive. You set this up in Photoshop / Preferences.