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Old January 21st, 2015, 01:05 AM   #1
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Is it wise to transition from a desktop to notebook based NLE

I'm looking to be doing a lot of video editing on the go, and have attempted to haul my desktop with all its add-ons one too many times resulting in several problems with the motherboard, GPU, hard drives, etc. I now have to get a new video editing system.

The question is: Am I better off getting a notebook computer that can handle the stress of 4K video editing or should I stick to desktops?

The notebook computer will enable me to work from virtually anywhere without the hassle of lugging around heavy computer parts. The desktop, however, offers more power and flexibility at a cheaper price.

I'm leaning towards the notebook though. It offers so much more.

Perhaps I could get some opinions from fellow forum members. Is there some factor I'm overlooking? Anyone else transitioned from desktop to notebook? Any recommendations on what notebook to buy? I have just about fifteen hundred dedicated to this venture.
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Old January 21st, 2015, 06:07 PM   #2
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Re: Is it wise to transition from a desktop to notebook based NLE

Desktop and laptop performance are, by and large, pretty neck and neck these days. I would make sure you get one with a good SSD, 16GB of RAM (at the minimum, 32+GB if your chosen model supports it and you have the cash) and the fastest mobile GPU that Premiere supports. For CC 2014, that would be a NVIDIA 780M officially. If you don't mind going for a potentially working, but not official supported (currently) GPU, I would look at the 970/980M series as that is very close to desktop performance.

If you can avoid having to go larger than 15" on the screen, that would be ideal for weight, unless you really love the real estate of a 17".
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Old January 21st, 2015, 06:41 PM   #3
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Re: Is it wise to transition from a desktop to notebook based NLE

I like the freedom of editing (or not) anywhere.

I literally just ordered this Lenovo laptop, usually $1500 U.S., $1000 right now. I like a smaller laptop, this is 14", and already have a 17". I wish it came with more RAM, but I can take care of that.

5th Generation Intel Core i7-5500U Processor (2.40GHz 1600MHz 4MB)
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Old January 21st, 2015, 07:20 PM   #4
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Re: Is it wise to transition from a desktop to notebook based NLE

I had a Lenovo 580 that I sold a year and a half ago to move to the Macbook Pro. What I found was that the Lenovo was pretty good, very close to great. The video port on their units is not standard, meaning that you likely will need to buy a special cable to drive an external monitor. Also, their external ESDI port was somewhat temperamental. The cable connection was not what I'd want if I was editing daily for long periods. The unit was heavy, heavier I believe than the MBP. I also find I prefer having hot swappable external drives as Apple does it, which is much easier to mount and unmount than Windows. At least it's less problematic. Often I found that to remount an external drive in W7 I had to reboot the machine. I've never had to do that with any Apple product. A little but significant issue. You can learn to work around it.

I likely could have stayed with that Lenovo laptop, but I eventually even left the MBP for daily work, because I really preferred the iMac form factor. Having to connect all your 'stuff' every time you use the machine is really a PITA, regardless of how it connects. Lenovo did supply and I bought, a docking station for the laptop, and recommend you get that too.

Have you checked to make sure your video card is supported by your NLE? On my Lenovo I had to find and install by hand a fix for the card. It worked fine with the fix, but when I upgraded Windows and Adobe updates, sometimes I had to reinstall it. Another small aggravation.

Best of luck! I loved the Lenovo keyboard. Just absolutely wonderful to type on.
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Old January 22nd, 2015, 11:32 AM   #5
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Re: Is it wise to transition from a desktop to notebook based NLE

Thanks guys for the input. I'm really considering the benefits of a laptop now. Who needs a desktop anyway??? Browsing potential candidates, I came across the Acer Aspire V17 Nitro Black Edition. Check out the specs here: VN7-791G-73AW | Laptops - Tech Specs & Reviews - Acer

Although its not as souped up (and expensive) as the HP Z-Books the Acer it seems offers the most bang for the buck.

The reviews are mostly good, but I went ahead and read all the bad reviews, and there are quite a few! Its primarily a gaming machine with enough juice to edit.

Anyone else have this computer? Or some comment on it?
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Old January 22nd, 2015, 11:47 AM   #6
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Re: Is it wise to transition from a desktop to notebook based NLE

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ali Jafri View Post
Or some comment on it?
It seems fine. It will be more than enough to edit on, the only question is how fast do you want to render, especially with effects applied? Or will you be working with 1080 or 4K?

If you plan on doing anything with 4K, especially if you find yourself using any kind of significant plugins, you may want to consider a beefier GPU spec, unless you don't feel like you'll ever be in a crunch time with rendering.

Otherwise, if the vast majority of your work will involve 1080, that should work fine for it.
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Old January 22nd, 2015, 01:50 PM   #7
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Re: Is it wise to transition from a desktop to notebook based NLE

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ali Jafri View Post
Thanks guys for the input. I'm really considering the benefits of a laptop now. Who needs a desktop anyway??? Browsing potential candidates, I came across the Acer Aspire V17 Nitro Black Edition. Check out the specs here: VN7-791G-73AW | Laptops - Tech Specs & Reviews - Acer

Although its not as souped up (and expensive) as the HP Z-Books the Acer it seems offers the most bang for the buck.

The reviews are mostly good, but I went ahead and read all the bad reviews, and there are quite a few! Its primarily a gaming machine with enough juice to edit.

Anyone else have this computer? Or some comment on it?
Make sure the 1 TB hard drive is 7200 rpm.
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Old January 26th, 2015, 04:40 AM   #8
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Re: Is it wise to transition from a desktop to notebook based NLE

See Tweakers Page - What about Laptops?

Using different wall outlets must have a high priority if you seriously consider a laptop.

A laptop must be run from a wall outlet, it is at least two times slower than a comparable desktop, it lacks almost all expandability options and is much more expensive than a desktop.

Last edited by Harm Millaard; January 26th, 2015 at 11:20 AM.
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Old January 26th, 2015, 09:59 AM   #9
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Re: Is it wise to transition from a desktop to notebook based NLE

I've cooked a few laptops/components and fortunately the Dell precisions I use have user replaceable components, including the graphics cards. It depends on whether or not you plan to run it overnight or days on end rendering AE and Animations, etc. Workstations still matter with adequate cooling and full size hard drives that can take the abuse. If you use an array, you're still lugging around another device, and can you live with a 17" monitor 24/7?

In your case there might be a compromise with a shoebox or small form factor PC. Small enough to carry, and still house a full size card and a raid (should you use notebook drives) with adequate space for cooling. You can use a rolling bag or small pelican case to carry it all.

Otherwise, for basic edits and short runs up to 2K, a fast laptop should suffice.
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