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High School newspaper/yearbook setup; What to get?
Posted by: S.Taylor
Date: February 26, 2006 10:45AM
My wife is the advisor for her high school's newspaper and yearbook. So far, she has been putting it all together on her Powerbook G4 with InDesign, and we recently picked up a mini that she keeps in her classroom.

The rep for her yearbook printer is arranging to get her a few computers and perhaps some software & whatever next school year. He already got her a Pentax istDL digital camera, which seems pretty nice.

Anyway, we're going through trying to figure out exactly what machines are going to work best for her little lab. Naturally, we're planning on using macs, and InDesign seems to work quite well for both newspaper and yearbook. But other than a handful of mini's (or macintel equivilent), what else is she going to need? Will a network attached storage drive be good for serving a small lab with photos and page spreads, or will she want to dedicate a machine for that? And will several students be able to work simultaneously on the files, or what's the best workflow for something like that?

We'll probably try to get the Creative Suite from Adobe, with InDesign and Photoshop and whatever (though I can't see them using anything more than InDesign and Photoshop). Any other software going to be useful?

Anyway, she's not getting tons of money, and wants to make it go as far as possible. What does she need?

Thanks in advance.
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Re: High School newspaper/yearbook setup; What to get?
Posted by: onthedownlow
Date: February 26, 2006 10:54AM
Wow...I used to push our yearbook's out on old Mac Classics (B&W)...some old LC's...one hooked up to a 19" B&W monitor (super expensive back then!)...an old LaserWriter...

...Aldus Freehand and Pagemaker...

...ah, I miss those days. I think pretty much any setup will be fine, as I know I could still use that type of old equipment to put out a publication easily.

Sorry not much help here...just had me thinkin' back...



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Re: High School newspaper/yearbook setup; What to get?
Posted by: microchip13
Date: February 26, 2006 10:57AM
You could go all out like my school.

Some G4's, 2 G5's with 20 inch Apple monitors, and an XServe



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Re: High School newspaper/yearbook setup; What to get?
Posted by: karsen
Date: February 26, 2006 10:58AM
Seems like 17" iMac G5's would be more economical than mini's unless you already have some monitors laying around. You'd get better performance as well.

I don't think you need to store everything on a central machine but an external drive does make sense to make a daily backup. It'd be a shame to lose photos or other work.

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Re: High School newspaper/yearbook setup; What to get?
Posted by: S.Taylor
Date: February 26, 2006 11:21AM
We do have a bunch of (donated) 20" CRT monitors kicking around. We jumped on those the moment they came in, knowing that eventually we'd get a lab smiling smiley

I think she would like to have all the files in some central location accessible to all; it's a real nuisance to try to track down a particular photo from a couple of different iPhoto libraries. Yes, she uses iPhoto to store her photos. Maybe someone has a better program.

Thanks for all the responses so far.

We'd love to be able to go all out, but this is a startup school, which tends to be even poorer than regular schools. We do our proofs for the newspaper on an ancient HP Laserjet 4mv I found at a thrift store. Does beautiful tabloid sized printing. Anyway, that's the kind of technology we're working with.



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 02/26/2006 11:44AM by S.Taylor.
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Re: High School newspaper/yearbook setup; What to get?
Posted by: onthedownlow
Date: February 26, 2006 12:31PM
Extensis for photos...if you can get it.

I also think iMacs would be good...but definitely can put the 20" monitors to use, so the Mini idea is also good.



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Re: High School newspaper/yearbook setup; What to get?
Posted by: mattkime
Date: February 26, 2006 02:04PM
minis should be fine but max the ram. i'd get one good sized external hard drive to share over the network (go gigabit)
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Re: High School newspaper/yearbook setup; What to get?
Posted by: jdc
Date: February 26, 2006 11:01PM
i also think minis might be OK if you have the monitors -- and maxing the ram would be smart as well

you might want to get one machine that is a "server" if you want to use that lingo -- maybe a 20" iMac (a G5 if you can still get one) or a dual G5 anything -- with its 250 gig drive it would be great as the central photo server -- or hook up a 300+ gig firewire drive to it and use that as the backup drive

i dont use iPhoto except for personal use -- but isnt there an option to have everyone be able to see whats in one iPhoto library? Once again -- denote one machine as the "photo library" and have everyone else share that library rather than creating your own

there is other software, like extnesis portfolio or iviewmedia --you will have to look at them to see if they are right for you

you may also consider just throwing photos into one central folder and label the folders as necessary -- then use the Adobe Bridge software to veiw photos -- it comes with the creative suite

OWCs offerings for external drives are excellent -- and they come with Retrospect express software -- designed to do backups. (there have been a lot of great deals on drives that size over at the "other" place too, no software)

theres no need for gigabit -- minis and iMacs dont have it -- get a nice 100bt switch

and the 4MV is a workhorse -- i have had one in my studio for the last 6 years and it has never failed
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