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Old February 8th, 2007, 06:41 AM   #1
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Join Date: May 2005
Location: Aalborg, Denmark
Posts: 29
Would this laptop suffice for direct-to-disc software + basic editing?

Hello There,

I would be pleased if you could help med out with some questions. I am on the lookout for a laptop and would like to be able to record audio- and video direct to disc. I am having a hard time finding the right laptop as I will mainly be using the laptop for my studies doing word processing etc. which naturally doesn’t demand a high-end laptop. However occasionally I will also want to use the laptop to record audio (speech in cd quality) and record entire two day conferences on video. I could use my stationary pc for editing, but I would like my laptop to support the option of recording video direct to disc so I could skip the capture process. I was thinking of buying Serious Magic’s DV Rack, and it seems to demand a pretty fast laptop?

Therefore I’ve been on the lookout for a HP Pavillion with a Core 2 Duo T7200 processor, but it’s simply not available here in Denmark. A DV9000 with the T7200 is listed on Hp’s Danish site, but according to Hp in Denmark it’s reserved for some kind of home-pc arrangement for corporate employees. The nx9420 is another option I considered, but it only supports one hard drive and uses the older pc card (cardbus) technology. I’m not sure the pc card interface is fast enough to support an external hard drive using eSata?. It seems the Hp business line lags a bit behind the consumer models on these two points.

I’m currently trying to find a way of configuring a pc to my needs through online sellers here in DK, but I’ve also come across the below Pavilion which might be okay for my needs. I don’t have any experience with AMD processors, so I could really use some advice. I know the processor is not in league with the T7200, but would the below laptop suffice for DV Rack or alternative direct-to-disc software plus basic video editing?? Alternative suggestions are also welcome, but please remember that I live in DK and would have to pay at least 25% tax on any purchase outside the European Union.

Thanks for your help!


Edit: Wow, I thought I remebered that DV Rack cost 300 USD. Now it seems they've been bought up by Adobe and only offer a HDV capable package that costs 500 USD. Hmm.... I think I will be starting with a cheaper sollution. :-)

HP Pavilion dv9045ea: (Copied from Danish site, but I believe the specs will be apparent for everyone)

• Drev: Lightscribe Super Multi DVD Writer (+/- r og +/- rw) med understøttelse af Double Layer
• Harddisk 160 GB (2x80 GB) EIDE-harddisk SATA 5400 o/m
• Lyd: 3D Sound Blaster Pro-kompatibel lyd 16 bit integreret Altec Lansing højttalere
• Netværk: High speed 56k modem, Integreret 10/100 netkort, 802.11a/b/g WLAN
• Operativsystem: Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005 med Upgrade Rollup 2
• Porte: 5-i-1 integreret Digital medielæser til Secure Digital-kort, MultiMedia-kort, Memory Stick, Memory Stick Pro eller xD Picture-kort, 1 VGA-port, 4 USB 2.0 porte, 1 IEEE-1394, 1 RJ 11-modemstik, 1 RJ 45 Ethernetstik, S-video TV out, Infrarød port til fjernbetjening, 2 hovedtelefonstik ét med SPDIF Digital lyd, 1 mikrofonstik, Kabel dockingstik
• Processor: AMD Turion 64 X2 mobil teknologi TL-52, Level 2 cache 512 kB+512 kB, op til 1600 MHz systembus, der kører med AC/DC mode 35 Watt
• RAM 1024 MB DDR2 667 MHz (2x512 MB) Understøtter op til 2 GB DDR2 hukommelse
• Skærm: 17” WXGA+ High Definition BrightView bredskærm, Opløsning: 1440x900
• Software: Microsoft® Works 8.0, Microsoft® Internet Explorer 6.0, Microsoft® Outlook® Express, Adobe® Reader 6.0, Sonic™ Digital MediaPlus: Sonic™ RecordNow, Sonic™ MyDVD, Sonic™ Easy Archive, Sonic™ Express Labeler, Microsoft® Windows® Media Player, Microsoft® MovieMaker, HP Photosmart Premier Internet Security™ 2006 (60 dages live update), HP QuickPlay medieafspiller software og tilhørende menustyring, musik- og dvd-knapper
• Tastatur: Desktop tastatur i fuld størrelse (med separat numerisk tastatur), Pegeplade med tænd/sluk-knap og dedikeret op/ned lodret og vandret rulning, volumen kontrol, lydslukningsknapper, 1 genvejsknap
• Video: NVIDIA® GeForce™ Go 7600 med 256 MB dedikeret skærmhukommelse PCI Express®
• Web kamera: HP Pavilion WebCam med integreret mikrofon
• Strømforsyning: 65 W vekselstrømsadapter
• Batteri: 8-cellers litium-ion-batteri (li-ion)
• Mål: H4,18 x B39,6 x L/D28,5 cm
• Vægt: 3,56 kg
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Old May 9th, 2007, 10:08 PM   #2
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Join Date: May 2007
Location: Alpharetta, Georgia, USA
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Would this laptop suffice for direct-to-disc software + basic editing?

In a word, YES.

For what it is worth, I use a relatively ancient HP Pavilion zd7140us.
A lot of the specs are similar except...
1. It's three years old.
2. It's has no built in DVD burner. I have an external USB 2.0 unit.
3. It's a 2.8 GHz Pentium 4 Hyperthreaded processor.
4. I maxed out the hard disk to 120 GB, memory to 2 GB.

That not withstanding, I routinely use this to record church services and orchestral/classical music events using an ancient (year 2000) Sony Digital8 camcorder (TRV-320), with a FireWire cable hooking the camcorder to the computer. I am VERY low end. All the same, this works flawlessly. I take it for granted at this point that I will record the entire event (1 - 3 hours) with no dropped frames.

And after the event, I move the footage to an external hard drive, edit it lightly, and render to the local hard drive. Then I burn a disk.

Don't bemoan the absence of eSATA to much. Fact is, any decent USB 2.0 external hard drive is fast enough for video capture. Assuming your are doing SD, the data rate is 3.6 MB/sec. A USB drive can easily hit 20 MB/sec. Just don't try to go HD. If you run a video preview window so you can keep track of what's going on, the computer may or may not keep up with both the preview window and the video capture in HD. In SD it is no problem whatsoever.

The software I use is Pinnacle Systems Studio. I said I was low end.
For my purposes, it works well.
Bill Koehler is offline   Reply

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