UPDATE old mac book pro 2011 vs imac 2014:

this test is not focused on image quality, just a comparison on rendering time with some image treatment. (no audio).

1) mac book pro 2011 (10.9.2) ram8gb - 1333 mhz ddr3 - 2,3 intel i7 - 750gb 5400rpm
fcpx 10.1.1
gh4 + pankake 20 f1.7- s50 (autofocus, sorry)
cinelike D

4 clips, 10 seconds each total 40sec: 100MB FHD + 200MB FHD ALL-I + 4K + C4K.
original MOV file (no optimized or proxy, i preferred to test MOV)

on each clip exactly the same color grade + treatment:
1) fcpx color board + light -medium
2) FC2
3)letterbox

rendering times after grading + treatment (on each 10 sec clip) :
100mb - 40sec to render 10 sec
200mb - 42 sec to render 10 sec
4K - 2min 40 sec to render 10 sec
C4K - 3min 16sec to render 10 sec

at the end, similar times to render the titles.

2) imac 2014
3,5 ghz i7
3 tera fusion drive (ssd + standard) - ram 8GB 1600 mhz ddr
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780M 4096 MB

rendering time per each clip is less than 50% of the previous mac book pro
BUT
you can work on 4K and C4K files, in the event browser and in the timeline without any click during editing, paste cut etc. (the workflow is fluid and fast like you were working on 1080p). this happen in a 1080 or 4k timeline and this is great.

I experienced some clicky movement just hardly grading and letterboxing in the same time the 4K. in any case the imac has a fast response on any job you ask to do, no sense of delay on any operation (open and close color board during 4K rendering, open effect etc ..)

final export directly to vimeo from fcpx (share vimeo): 1080p 103MB total - better quality.
the file was up in 6 minutes once i pushed the sharing button (4min on the imac - rendering time difference).

opinion: also if exported 1080p, C4K is much much much better, no doubt - and in this video the aim was not to work on image quality - On the other hand, the time you need to work with this format is incredible slow if you are on an old mac (shortly you can't work), maybe you can do sometimes a short editing here and there, but for strong users it's a waste of time, money and brain. 2 main ways: work at your best with 200MB by now but prepare to sell your old mac and start thinking about a new one.

UPDATE: very fast workflow on the new imac during editing (no waiting time at all, 4k images move fluidly), this is the biggest step forward. rendering time after color grade and effect is more than 50% faster but you can still experience some slow click here and there (no problem if you already have done all the editing job and just need to finish the color). you can edit end export 4k timeline very easily.

feel free to add point of view on suggested solution for a new mac, customized one or better and more usefull workflow. thanks

ps note that when you put a C4K on a 1080p timeline it takes extra time to render (not mentioned here but similar to the effect rendering time), otherwise you'll see cliking video. UPDATE: not this kind of problem on the new imac.

conclusion: i payed 2500 euro for the macbook pro in 2011, the price of the new imac is quite the same in 2014.
in 2011 the mac book pro was perfect for 1080p now the imac is the partly perfect for 4K without problems. for professional use (that means 850 euro year).

*to remove TOTALLY the clicking movement when rendering effect like Filmconvert or LUT or with some heavier 4k files you have to go on mac pro (tested in the store), but to feel a complete difference you have to go on the bigger one, that means around 4000 euro. or increase the ram and or graphic card, or work with proxy files if you like that.

**this comparison is about mac not because i'm a fan but just because i'm used to work on that kind of machine. no experience on windows or mackintosh so i do not know what to say about price and results. sorry:)

hope this test could be helpful for further analysis.

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