Video editing on the iMac Pro

“Earlier this year Apple released the iMac Pro, a thoughtfully built machine aimed at creative professionals,” Veanne Cao writes for TecdhCrunch. “The base model starts at $4,999 while a maxed-out configuration will run approximately $13,000.”

Apple sent us a mid-tier model for review:

• 27-inch 5K (5120 x 2880) retina display
• 10-core 3.0GHz Intel Xeon W processor, Turbo Boost up to 4.5GHz
• 128GB 2666MHz DDR4 ECC memory
• Radeon Pro Vega 64 with 16GB of HBM2 memory

“I spent a month with the iMac Pro and edited a total of five videos,” Cao writes. “Latency is almost non-existent when switching between Adobe Premiere’s ripple, razor and pen tools, while simultaneously exporting a sequence and editing a gallery of CR2 files in Lightroom while jumping from one program to the next to the next. The loudest I’ve heard the internal fan spin during heavy-duty processing was a faint hum, a stark contrast to the grating, high-pitched growls from my MacBook Pro.”

“With the iMac Pro, I’m reminded of how enjoyable video editing can be,” Cao writes. “At this price point though, who is the iMac Pro for? I definitely can’t justify its price tag to my corporate overlords. My two friends who run production companies with teams of 14 and 28 echoed the same sentiment: ‘It doesn’t make sense, business-wise, with that many employees.’ And my freelance colleagues, even the ones consistently landing high-paying gigs, all but one said it wasn’t worth the price… The others plan to switch over to PCs once their Macs crap out or are waiting for the Mac Pro, set to release in 2019.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Wait ’til they see the price of the Mac Pro, if it ever arrives.

The rationale for buying an iMac Pro all-in-one workstation starting at $4,999 – March 8, 2018
iMac Pro shootout: 8-core vs. 10-core – March 7, 2018
iMore reviews Apple’s new iMac Pro: Beauty of a beast – March 1, 2018
Ars Technica reviews Apple’s iMac Pro: It’s MUCH faster – February 18, 2018
Apple’s powerful iMac Pro is ready for the enterprise – February 16, 2018
Apple’s powerful new iMac Pro is actually cheaper than the original Mac – February 7, 2018
Aerospace engineer Dr. Craig Hunter reviews Apple’s 18-core iMac Pro: A bargain at $11,199 – February 3, 2018
Apple begins shipping 18-core iMac Pro units to customers – January 31, 2018
Macworld reviews Apple’s new iMac Pro: ‘Mac Pro power in the shape of an iMac’ – January 19, 2018
Apple’s iMac Pro has a Thunderbolt 3 storage surprise for you – January 19, 2018
What if Apple’s iMac Pro had TWO Vega GPUs? – January 16, 2018
Benchmarks: 8-core and 10-core iMac Pros running pro apps – January 11, 2018
iMac Pro PCIe-based flash storage: How fast versus other Macs? – January 5, 2018
Benchmark shootout: iMac Pro with Pro Vega 56 GPU versus optional Pro Vega 64 – January 4, 2018
Apple’s low-end 8-core iMac Pro benchmarked running pro apps – December 29, 2017
Low End iMac Pro versus two Mac Pros and one iMac 5K – December 27, 2017
Extrapolating iMac Pro GPU performance using RX Vega 64 – December 14, 2017
Apple’s monstrously potent iMac Pro is for these professional computer users – December 14, 2017
How pros are already using Apple’s powerful iMac Pro – December 14, 2017
Apple’s iMac Pro, the most powerful Mac ever made, is now available starting at $4,999 – December 14, 2017
Apple’s monstrously potent iMac Pro is for these professional computer users – December 14, 2017


  1. Wow, this product is misunderstood by the video crowd. This product isn’t aimed at you, the video crowd. Clearly over powered.

    The iMac Pro is aimed at developpers of Apple centric products : Apps and games for iPad, iPhone, Mac, AppleTV, AppleWatch…

    1. Yes, I agree. Misunderstood. And yet, those are most likely the group that ran off crying about FCPX and all its changes. Lots fled to Windows Base PCs and had to buy or rent Adobe editing software. Plus, had to buy into some decent machine to run it. That’s a rather expensive leap too. Yet, in every experience I have had with customer built PCs – they don’t last as long as my iMacs have.

  2. First of all, it’s not overpowered for the video crowd. It depends on what you are doing. This myopic dope writing the article is editing 1080HD which most computers can do with ease now so of course the iMacPro isn’t necessarily for people doing modest work in HD. Even though he lists notable improvements in interface responsiveness and rendering times over his MacBookPro laptop apparently he has time to kill as that, in the end, doesn’t seem very important to him. Plus he’s using Premier not Final Cut Pro which the iMacPro is designed for partially. And he really is using this “review” to announce his probable plans to build his own PC. Finally he proclaims that anyone not editing like him is a “niche” market.

    I’ll put out an alternate view of his review, he’s really saying that he and his freelance friends he mentions aren’t getting paid enough to afford a $5000, 3 to 4 year, investment into their livelihood and he’s expressing his sour grapes by belittling an Apple product.

  3. I am an independent free-lance designer who does a combination of creative work, including some video editing. I am looking to move to this machine from my 5-year old PowerBook Pro 15″ mostly because of video editing. The $4999 configuration will suffice for my needs (32GB RAM, 1TB SSD) while I will still need to use external Thunderbolt drive for video storage. The cost is only about $1000 more than I paid 5 years ago for my (top of the line) Powerbook Pro, and the 5K display is worth every penny of that. It would cost $1000 to $1500 for a comparable display separately. Besides that I will have much faster processing and graphics, double my current RAM and SSD. A no-brainer. Is it hard for me to budget with a meager free-lance income? Yes. But it is worth every penny in productivity and ease of use. You could not pay me to do all my work on a PC.

  4. The article mentions one person said the new iMac Pro isn’t worth it. Others are waiting until the iMac crap out and will flee to a PC.

    Lets make it perfectly clear here, equip any assembly of a windows base machine to match the iMac Pro and one will spend pretty much the same price for this powerful beast.
    Plus, its a do all, create all, develop all — machine for anyone who wishes raw power in a format and style that has held true to Apple with iMacs for years. Its a beautiful worthy product to buy that will keep you in business for a good amount of years. Example, all my iMacs have lasted over ten years – and please they are seriously still useful. None of my PCs have lasted more then two years. Self-built PCs can save money with top of the line components, yet they never last. I plan to buy the iMac Pro soon and if it can last me ten years — its an unbelievable investment with power to last. Avoid articles like one.

    1. In addition. its a dream for editing 4K + video. Which is where the market is at. Happy Apple put power into the iMac 27″ model. I still wish to further investigate the extending of monitors say for two more to the iMac Pro – and hope like the MacPro that can support 6 large monitors with ease… iMac Pro can too.

  5. Here’s an example of someone who thinks it’s definitely worth it: MDN linked to his FCPX review/transition a month back. If a freelancer like him thinks its a good idea, it’s a good idea for A LOT of people. I understand that it might not be practical for a company to buy dozens of these things, but I think with the time saved and ability to do more projects in the example above, it pays for itself in a matter of months, certainly no more than a year. Funny that you never see links to REAL work being done by the whiners crying that the iMac Pro sucks because it’s not user upgradeable.

    1. I can’t tell you how many production facilities I have visited where there are not-quite bottom of the line iMacs everywhere (Photoshop, AE, CGI rough work, audio, editing, etc.) and a few MacPros to do the heavy work. PC based production houses do the same thing. Why does this author think that these production companies would want a $5000 powerhouse on every desk? The iMacPro is a worthy replacement for MacPros at this time. It doesn’t happen in real life, oh wait, I just said real life, this author isn’t very acquainted with it.

  6. My Quad Core Mac Pro (Cheesegrater) cost less than $3000 and allows me to use standard cards, standard memory, easy upgrade of CPUs, internal storage and media drives, etc- all with few to no tools.

    Why the off is this so damn hard for Apple? The Mac Pro Workstation was just about perfect for the market- all they had to do was keep the basic design perfect. They could probably scale the size down slightly for the newer processors that generate less heat.

    I want the display I buy that does not have a spy camera and microphone mounted on top that cannot be turned off. I want a discreet display so that if the display dies I can plug in another and keep going. I want INTERNAL storage that I can hot swap- not a bunch of boxes and a mess of cables. I want standard Graphics cards that I can plug in as I see fit. I want expansion that allows me to keep current- like when I added USB 3 to my tower for something like $20.

    You cannot do that with a glued shut iMac or a bolted shut Mac mini. You sure as hell cannot do that with any Mac laptop.

    1. Agree.

      I’ve got three working upgraded Cheese Graters in my house, typing this on a processor upgraded with a 980 Titanium card.

      I keep one with a AMD card for software upgrades because as you pointed out ” INTERNAL storage that I can hot swap” (I just pull the sleds, swap the drives and upgrade because as you probably know Apple software updates don’t play nice with Nvidia cards).

      The iMac Pro is now way faster than my machines but for years my Cheese Graters in GPU were 2-3 times faster than the Cylinder in certain tasks.


      The article complained a bit about PRICE on the iMac Pro.

      Personally to me TIME is the most valuable asset and I try to get the best products.

      That said the reason many people could justify Cheese Grater prices in the price is that we knew we could KEEP THEM RUNNING FOR A LONG TIME as we could UPGRADE THEM (RAM, drives, GPUs even the CPUS if you’re willing to fiddle a bit). We could swap drives out if the machine has problems to send the machine to the shop — keep working with the drive in another Mac (not possible with the iMac). We could even replace Fans, Power Units etc — I never needed to personally as the robust design just kept on running. We can ALSO CHANGE SCREENS (I have dual big monitors, one a 27 inch Wacom Cintiq) . That’s why we are ok with paying big bucks.

      I’m hesitating on the iMac Pro because of the above reasons even though the specs are great.

      (BTW personally I don’t think the Macbook Pro which the writer is using — I have one — is a true ‘truck’, it doesn’t even have a 32 GB option or a power GPU. the speeds differences he records : 5:57 minutes on the MB vs 0:45 on a desktop is ridiculous )

    2. I agree completely. I will not buy an iMac Pro or a cylinder Mac Pro. I will stick with my 2012 Mac Pro Tower for as long as it takes for Apple to release the new Mac Pro. Why? Because I will purchase a beast of a machine that will last me 5 years and more because I will be able to upgrade the beast whenever the beast needs upgrading.
      I am able to get all of my work done on my current model… and yes, it may take me a little longer, but it’s all about the end result and not necessarily the time it takes to get done.
      Most of my work is done in Logic Pro X and Final Cut Pro… and I absolutely love these programs and am a power user. I love Logic so much, that I dropped using Pro Tools and haven’t looked back.
      What really matters to me is whether or not I am able to produce and create with my software and tell the story I want to tell, enjoying the process throughout and not having to rush to get it done.
      When Apple finally comes out with the right product, the one us pros have been asking and waiting for, it will be the product we will buy to replace our current device. I look forward to the 2019 Mac Pro. It better be upgradeable or Apple is gonna have one hell of a problem on its hands..

  7. The iMac Pro isn’t overpriced because of its specification. It has more than enough power to manage video editing tasks today. For a true pro, the price would be inline with the performance … today.

    The problem is that Apple and all the other makers are making a big stink about forthcoming artificial intelligence, higher resolution stuff, big data number crunching, virtual reality, … who knows what one might want to be doing 5 years from now. A sealed iMac has no way to gracefully and cost effectively be updated for the future. That undercuts the value of any iMac used in a production, high-demand environment.

    The fact that Apple doesn’t grasp this simple reality shows that it’s green earth day T shirts are virtue signaling to distract people from the fact Apple is now making disposable, non-repairable products.

    Apple has no hardware experts anymore, so the iMac Pro stopgap model is Apple’s attempt to keep true professionals for leaving immediately. For the past 8 years Apple put no hardware effort whatsoever into user friendly Mac updates. Ive, Cook, and Burberry Queen thought that Macs were just big screens for clerks in fashionable shoppes. Shiller lost it too, thinking that trashcans were good enough. Surely all Mac users will just throw away the old computer and buy a new one when the new fashion season arrives, right? That is what makes all Macs for sale today BAD BARGAINS.

    For SHAME.

  8. To edit video on iMac Pro, don’t miss Joyoshare Media Cutter Mac. It’s an easy yet professional video editor consisting of various editing tools, such as losslessly cut, crop, rotate, split, flip, merge clips at 60X speed, adjust aspect ratio, add background music and subtitles, design unique watermarks, apply effects and frames, extract audio from video, remove noise from audio, convert video and audio to any other general formats and device-compatible formats, etc.

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