A high-performance NUC for photography and video

I’ve decided to go forward with my plan to set up a Windows computer for photography and video, as I mentioned in my last post. Since the only reason for doing this is that my iMac is too slow, this new one has to be fast. I went with another Intel NUC, only this time starting with the top of the line:

  • NUC5i7RYH with 5th Generation Core i7-5557U (WiFi included)
  • 16GB RAM (Crucial DDR3-1600 MT/s)
  • 1TB hard drive (HGST Travelstar 7K1000 2.5-Inch 1TB 7200 RPM SATA III 32MB Cache)
  • 500GB SSD (Samsung 850 EVO)
  • Dell UltraSharp U2515H 25-Inch LED-Lit Monitor (2560 x 1440)
  • Windows 10 Home
  • No keyboard and mouse–already have them.

The total cost for all of this from Amazon was $1200, incredibly cheap for such a high-end system. By comparison, a Mac Mini with an i7, 16GB, and a 1TB drive is $1400; the corresponding part of my NUC is $657 (including price of Windows), which is less than half as much. And, unlike the Mac Mini, the NUC has room for the SSD internally. (Both the NUC and the Mac Mini have dual-core i7 processors, not quad-core.)

An alternative, but much larger, system from Dell is an XPS 8700 desktop with a 1TB disk for $900 (without monitor or SSD). That’s a good price, too, since its i7 is a quad-core, and it comes with a DVD drive, a keyboard, and a mouse. Since it’s a large desktop, it also has expandability, whereas the NUC I ordered has none.

My NUC system will arrive next week. I’ll need to put it together, install Windows, and move my 52,000 or so photos over from the Mac. My Adobe Creative Cloud license allows me to run Lightroom and Photoshop on Windows, so I’ll need to install them, too.

Of course, I’ll post a progress report here at the end of the week.