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Old May 18th, 2007, 05:55 PM   #1
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how to build a good PC for Ppro and AF

how to build a good PC for Ppro and AF, or how to begin to

greets

I'm going to plan some investments in hardware, but I still don't have a clear idea about what to get in order to have a good use of premiere pro and after effects.

I've read about many kick-ass configurations around here, I don't think I can afford everything you suggest atm.
(I actually do have stuff I might rip from other machines too).
So I'd like to make the point about related 'priorities' regarding what those softwares need mostly in order to work fine.

my main purposes - rendering HDV 720P with alot color correction, many filter/effects, chroma key matte, then compositing with video and 2d/3d stuff

Then, some other questions I have:
32 or 64 bits?
memory - DDR/ DDR2/the same?
Which OS makes this software run better?
Processors/memory/video cards - What is the order of importance/ what to buy first (in order to wait for other newer/cheaper stuff) /how many video cards/suggested video card models/ how to balance those?

I've also read about many other good tips such having the Raid O drive.
So, I'd like to know if there's anything else you suggest.

thank you

CW
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Old May 18th, 2007, 06:51 PM   #2
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Recently someone asked what would be a nice investment for an editing PC, Adobe Production Studio and a camera package for less than $ 17K.

I came up with the following suggestion, based on Dutch prices including 19% VAT, so for the US you can probably just exchange for $ and end up with the same numbers.
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Old May 19th, 2007, 07:44 AM   #3
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Hi Chester,

My pc cost me $2000 Aus (inc monitor) to build, and works perfectly with HDV, premiere pro 2 and after effects, I also use vue xstream, Lightwave and a few other multimedia applications without any problems. You will need something like cineform HD to use aftereffects, cos it struggles with .m2t files, but premiere works fine with .m2t (or mpeg) files, aswell as with cineform.

I use the canon XH-A1 via firewire.

Heres my system.

Dual core 5200 (2.6Ghz) AMD
2 Gigs of DDR2 ram
Nvidia Gforce 7600GT 256mb
1x320Gig sataII HDD..C:operating system D:Video etc. (Raid supported if I require it)
20" widesdreen monitor
Windows XP Sp2 32bit

If you have the money, I suppose you can go nuts.
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Old May 19th, 2007, 12:04 PM   #4
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many thanks :)

so, seems to me main requirements are dualcore 2600+ processors, lots of DDR2 and a 256 video card

I wish I could test this stuff by myself as I'm still curious to understand which feature between those is most important for my purposes, even my budget isnt very high I could still push something to higher standards

Last edited by Chester Wolverhampton; May 19th, 2007 at 05:50 PM.
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Old May 19th, 2007, 10:49 PM   #5
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Hi Chester,

The processor is definatly a main factor along with a fast and large HDD. I also have a dual core 1.6 Ghz laptop without a dedicated video card, The video card shares the memory (not ideal), but that also works pretty well when capturing and editing HDV.
My previouse desktop setup was a single intel 2.8ghz processor, 2 gigs of DDR ram AGP video card, nvidia Geforce 6600 256ram and a 80 gig HDD, and it struggled to playback and edit HDV, mainly because of the processor. My new motherboard supports PCI-E, Sata II, raid etc, and is generally faster allround.

Good luck with your new challenge, once you get it going you'll love it!

Ivan.
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Old May 20th, 2007, 08:41 AM   #6
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Chester:

PPro 2.0 won't work with 64 bit architecture. I know from experience. I have a 64 bit system that I had to change back to 32 bit. Adobe also admitted it won't work with 64 bit.
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Old May 20th, 2007, 02:57 PM   #7
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I'll be getting a new platform soon for HDV editing. Some points that have come up:

- Windows XP is not sold anymore, if you do not have old installation disks for XP pro you are out of luck.

- PPro 2.0 does not work with Vista, have to get PPro CS when it comes out.

- I want to get a display adapter with 2 DVI connectors for 2 LCD displays (24" 1920x1200 and 17" 1200x1080 at the moment) with HDTV out also. nVidia makes them relatively cheap, with 256MB of memory. The raw processor power of the adaptor does not make a difference with editing, but some add-ons like Magic Bullet can use the video processors to speed up rendering considerably. If you want to go that way the sky is limit.

- HDD space is cheap and new drives are fast. RAID 0 is twice as prone to malfunction as a single disk. It is safer to just use one fast disk and make a backup to another at night or something.

- Have OS and programs on one physical disk, all video data on another.

- Do not connect video edit PC to internet, virus scans and automatic updates can and will slow down the machine and might wreack havoc on an edit.

- More RAM is better, get 4 GB.
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Old May 20th, 2007, 06:30 PM   #8
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A couple of clarifications and opinions:

- It is getting less available, of course, as the push for Vista is on, but WinXP is still a current product for purchase.

- PPro2 is not Vista certified, but PPro3 which is in late beta, will be. So if you're using XP and need a final retail version of PPro now, get CS2. If you want a Vista box, buy the release version of CS3 in a couple of months. The beta has some bugs and some features are disabled; folks have found some workarounds if you're adventurous. I've personally decided to delay upgrading to Vista until I'm ready to buy retail CS3 and have enough good reports that it will be of benefit...XP is working fine and if it ain't broke, I'm not too eager to fix it.

- Current CS2 apps only use 2GB each under XP (3GB with a command line switch that works for some people and gives others stability problems). Not certain how the CS3 apps will handle large amounts of memory under Vista, but they will still be 32 bit apps.

- If you're going to do multiple streams of HD, having your working media files and scratch disk(s) as a RAID0 is a good thing to do for performance. But as Petri said, a RAID0 is a bad place to put your archival source files because the loss of one drive kills all your data. I archive to a separate computer with a large RAID5 setup and copy clips I'm going to use in a project onto the RAID0 on my editing box.
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Old May 21st, 2007, 03:49 AM   #9
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I've been using Win XP 64 with Premiere without any problems.
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Old May 21st, 2007, 02:48 PM   #10
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help please... a little ot..

"(3GB with a command line switch that works for some people and gives others stability problems)"

could some kind soul point me to this info? how to set it, and set it back if it doesn't work?

thanks,
jon
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Old May 23rd, 2007, 03:46 PM   #11
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If you have XP sp2 and more than 3GB of memory, you could locate the file boot.ini in your boot disk C: and modify it.

This is mine, I think this should be pretty standard for a plain installation except that there is one more line (the good one):

[boot loader]
timeout=15
default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS
[operating systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Pro 3GB" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect /PAE /3GB
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Professional" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect

This will give you a boot menu with two options, the default should boot with 3GB of user addressable memory per application, although windows will tell you nothing has changed.
Timeout=15 means that you'll have 15 seconds to choose between the new or the standard config before the boot.
Obviously the applications must recognize the extended user memory area, otherwise will use 2Gb as usual. Premiere and AE will do it.
Depending on the applications you will run together (background services included) it could happen that this configuration will put some restraint on the system memory area (3Gb user/1Gb system - because in 32 bit system you can only address 4 Gb of total memory. The default is 2Gb user/2Gb system).This could cause some instability if an application needs additional system area (EG for drivers lookup tables etc..) .
To overcome this problem there is another parameter to add in the boot.ini file... /USERVA="user memory strictly needed". This will subtract some user memory from the 3Gb stated by the switch.

So my boot.ini file could appear as:

[boot loader]
timeout=15
default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS
[operating systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Pro 3GB" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect /PAE /3GB /USERVA=2800
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Professional" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect

In this case I'm telling windows to reserve 200kb more memory to the system needs. The value for the USERVA parameter is heuristic, because it strictly depends on the software configuration of the computer.
I don't use it and my system is perfectly stable with the 3GB parameter only, with Ppro, Photoshop and also using Ae/NucleoPro (alone...) but it's all about experience. I've found that PremierePro2 with Cineform is much more stable using it.

Just search on Google about /USERVA or about /3GB switch and you will find a lot of info. Just don't do anything if you are not really feeling confident about changing the boot.ini file.
My configuration allows to boot in the standard way by selecting the "usual" option, but ...

Sorry if I have been to much technical in the wrong place.. and excuse for my poor english. Just hope this helps
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Old May 23rd, 2007, 04:31 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Petri Kaipiainen View Post
I'll be getting a new platform soon for HDV editing. Some points that have come up:

- Windows XP is not sold anymore, if you do not have old installation disks for XP pro you are out of luck.

- PPro 2.0 does not work with Vista, have to get PPro CS when it comes out.

- I want to get a display adapter with 2 DVI connectors for 2 LCD displays (24" 1920x1200 and 17" 1200x1080 at the moment) with HDTV out also. .
To reiterate, Vista/Aero has apparently comandeered the "overlay surface" that the monitor/HDTVout facilities were built on. So the Matrox Parhelia APVe and PPro+Cineform Access HD among many others are will not support Vista for some time till something else is worked out. Also, Nvidia Forceware drivers versions 100 thru latest 158.xx are now entriely silent on overlay surface function under Vista.
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