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my desk

This is my side of our home office (best viewed - large).... Almost exactly five years ago I took another photo of what my desk looked like and what kinds of technology I was using at home. Well it's been five years and I just retired most of what I was using... now I'm an Apple convert and my home setup is much simpler (it's amazing the cabling that was pulled out, and how quiet things are... will be interesting to see if the power bill drops).

 

Click Here to see a close up version of what's on my desk.

 

Basically I have two computers, a desktop, laptop and a third machine functioning as a storage server. They are networked together by an HP ProCurve 8 port gigabit ethernet switch, with a Linksys WRT54GS running Tomato and functioning as a dedicated firewall and router and an Airport Extreme serving up wireless internet access.

 

This is just a fantastic setup for doing just about any photographic related computer task one could think of... It's wonderful to edit with this hardware and setup. Aside from the Mac Pro which is lighting fast, the real treat is seeing images on the amazingly accurate and sharp 30" NEC display, this monitor is quite a bit above and beyond the Apple Cinema Display (as well as the Dell and HP offerings).

 

On Switching to Mac: I've been a Microsoft user since MS-DOS 3.3 and have worked professionally as a server engineer and systems designer for Microsoft Servers for approx. 15 years, and Microsoft has come a long way... some of their newest offerings are darn impressive. But the reality is for me, at home... I want something that is simple, powerful and is best geared for photography. Additionally I wanted something that was simpler and doesn't result in me having to rebuild the system once a year or so because of something silly happening.

 

I've been half switched for a bit more than three months and so far it's been fantastic... there is a bit of a learning curve and somethings are kind of annoying, but overall it's been wonderful and the most enjoyable computing experience of my life. Besides, if I really need to run Windows I have Windows 7 Ultimate running in side a VMWare virtual machine.

 

Desktop:

Mac Pro Hex Core Xeon 3.33Ghz. CPU

12GB RAM (OWC Upgrade)

2x50GB OWC Mercury Extreme Pro RE Solid State Drives (SSD)

4x 2TB Western Digital Caviar Black Hard Drives

NEC 30" LCD3090WQXi-BK LCD Monitor & SpectraView Calibration Software

NewerTech MAXPower 6G PCIe eSATA RAID Card

Vantec NexStar3 External Hard Drive Enclosure.

2 x Western Digital Studio Edition 500GB External Hard Drive

Apple Wireless Keyboard, Magic Trackpad and Magic Mouse

Microsoft Natural Ergonomic 4000

Microsoft LaserMouse

Wacom intuos3 4x6" Tablet

Klipsch promedia 2.1 Speakers

Running: OS-X Snow Leopard, Adobe Creative Suite CS5 Extended, Adobe Lightroom 3, VmWare Fusion w/ Windows 7 Ultimate, Apple iWork, Firefox, FileZilla, TweetDeck, Google Earth, PhotoLinker, Skype, TechTool Deluxe, Canon Digital Photo Professional (and other misc. Canon software for EOS camera's as well as Printer software)

 

Notebook:

Apple 15" MacBook Pro

Core i5 2.4Ghz. CPU (not worth spending the $$ on the Core i7, especially when this won't be my primary editing machine and especially when $300 only buys me 10% more performance)

8GB of RAM (OWC Upgrade)

500GB 7200RPM Segate Momentus XT Hard Drive (this is a great drive that comes with a 4GB SSD cache)

High Res Screen (but not the Anti-Glare screen, clients love looking at images on the glossy screen)

G-Tech G Drive mini 500GB Hard Drive

OWC Mercury Elite-AL Pro 1TB External Hard Drive

Apple Magic Mouse

Running: OS-X Snow Leopard, Adobe Creative Suite CS5 Extended, Adobe Lightroom 3, VmWare Fusion w/ Windows 7 Ultimate, Apple iWork, Firefox, FileZilla, TweetDeck, Google Earth, PhotoLinker, Skype, TechTool Deluxe, Canon Digital Photo Professional (and other misc. Canon software for EOS camera's as well as Printer software)

 

Storage Server:

AMD Athlon 3800+ X2 Dual Core

ASUS A8N-E 939 NVIDIA nForce4 Motherboard

2GB Corsair Memory

Cooler Master CMStacker Case (this thing can hold a LOT of hard drives)

Cooler Master Real Power RS-450-ACLX 450W Power Supply

Sony Black 1.44MB 3.5" Internal Floppy Drive

NEC DVD Burner Black ND-3540A

2 x 500GB Hitachi Deskstar Hard Drives (RAID Mirror)

2 x 320GB Hitachi Deskstar Hard Drives (RAID Mirror)

3 x 1TB Western Digital Caviar Black Hard Drives (RAID5 Array)

Running FreeNAS

 

Networking:

HP ProCurve 10/100/1000Mbps Switch 1800-8G

Linksys WRT54GS running Tomato firmware (this is just functioning as a firewall and router)

Apple Airport Extreme Wireless Access Point

 

Misc:

Apple iPhone 3G

Blackberry Tour 9630

Calumet UDMA Firewire CF Reader

Canon MX7600 Mulit-Function Printer (out of frame)

Garmin eTrex Summit HC

NEC SpectraView - Color Calibrator (basically a customized X-Rite Eye One Display 2 colorimeter for the NEC monitor)

APC SmartUPS 1400 UPS Power Backup

HumanScale 4G Ergonomic Keyboard Tray (designed to fit the Microsoft Natural Keyboards)

Herman Miller Mirra Office Chair (out of frame)

 

What's Next:

Next year I plan to add a few more things to the mix... including

Data Expansion - Adding a OWC Mercury Elite-AL Pro Qx2 quad bay external drive array with four 3TB Hard Drives. Will be used for data backup.

Second Monitor - Will be adding either a 22" or 24" secondary NEC monitor, which will make layout and album design work a bit nicer.

 

Software: I want to point out that 100% of the software that is run on these systems has been paid for and is all legal like. This wasn't always the case but I do like knowing that it's all legit ... I think it's highly hypocritical for photographers or other content creators to complain about someone stealing their images or using images without their permission if they use pirated or not properly licensed software.

 

Fenstermacher Photography

wedding | portrait | event | commercial

 

... follow me on Twitter

 

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Taken on October 11, 2010