Apple finally brought in a key missing piece to its 4K editing workflow/ Thunderbolt 2 Mac pipeline. On the high end, you’ve got the Mac Pro with dual GPUs, Thunderbolt 2 buses and the ability to run up to 3 4K displays. On the Mobile end, you’ve got the Macbook pro which has a 4K HDMI out.
Now for your everyday editor, you’ve got the new Retina iMac, which has a built in 5k screen, and Thunderbolt 2 capability. At 5120‑by‑2880, that leaves enough screen real-estate for 4K at 100% with space left over for the UI. For your average FCPX editor, this is an amazing sweet spot. Check out the full tech specs here: http://www.apple.com/imac-with-retina/specs/
You’re going to be able to easily monitor pixel-for-pixel 4K footage on a solid display and in many ways, the new iMac represents the missing piece for 4K workflow: a very high quality, affordable 4K workstation to watch/edit all the 4K material that the new cameras from BMD, AJA, Sony, RED, GoPro, Panasonic, and pretty much everyone else are now recording to by default.
The main challenge up to this point was that even though you were recording to these formats, it was hard to actually monitor the resolution. Now, your average editor is going to be able to do that, and I think that this iMac release is further confirmation that it’s time to get your 4K workflow together.
The price point for the 5k Retina iMac is also really astounding at $2499. 4K editing is here. Let’s all get back to making movies now. My real takeaway from the 5k iMac is that we’ve finally got a machine with a proper standard 4K ready panel that makes it easy to view and edit in a great form factor.
As usual, Apple took something that everything else was making really difficult (4K display/editing) and put it all together into a computer that makes the workflow a lot more straightforward and makes you wonder why no one else is offering something like that already. (No doubt Apple’s scale of manufacturing and ability to source exclusive vendor arrangements helps a lot here).
4K is here. Time to upgrade if you haven’t already… and if you need an iMac-based Final Cut Pro X package, FCPWORKS is a full Apple reseller with unique workflows and tons of experience with FCPX. We’re ready to get you up and running now. (One hint, you’ll probably want to get the AMD Radeon R9 M295X 4GB GPU option and not the stock configuration).