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2020 iMac 5K: Zerene Stacker Focus Stacking
Related: 2019 iMac 5K, 2020 iMac 5K, 4K and 5K display, computer display, CPU cores, focus stacking, iMac, iMac 5K, Macs, memory, video, Zerene Stacker
MPG tested the 2020 iMac 5K 3.6 GHz Intel Core i9 10-core / 128GB / 2TB / Radeon 5700. Smart move: buy with 8GB memory, then add 64GB or 128GB OWC memory to save a ton on memory cost (same memory as 2019 iMac 5K).
For my photographic work, I use Zerene Stacker heavily for focus stacking and it takes minutes to do some stacks, so speed here matters. Zerene Stacker is not the fastest stacking software out there (see Helicon Focus results), but minimizing touchup work is far more important and that’s where Zerene Stacker shines by yielding results that minimize the need for retouching and my retouching time is far more important than the computer time.
Zerene Stacker is outstanding at using all CPU cores. Being Java-based, it does not use the GPU.
2019 Mac Pro with its 28 CPU cores wins easily, showing just how excellent a machine it is when its CPU cores are utilized (not all that often!).
This stack uses 20 16-bit 45-megapixel images from the Nikon D850. See Nikon D850 'Focus Shift shooting' feature for Easy Focus Stacking.