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Old July 31st, 2007, 07:10 AM   #1
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Calabash North carolina
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Macbook Pro

If this isn't in the right forum please forgive me, I'm new here and still trying to find my way around.
I have a question about editing, my daughter has a situation where she works at a church editing their videos. They use a desktop computer, I think it might be something like an Mac pro 4 or something that sounds kind of like that. I'm sure you guys probably know. On the side she does videos for bands and the church allows her to edit those videos on her off time on their computer. I was thinking of surprising her and buying her one that she can use at home to lessen her time away from home. I do know that she uses Final Cut Pro to do the editing. She is being asked to go on the road more and more to do these music videos and I was wondering if a Macbook Pro would be a good choice. I have heard that notebooks aren't good for editing but I'm not sure. Of course if she could take it with her it would allow her to be more mobile and *still* work away from home which could be good in certain circumstances. However if they aren't good for editing videos then a desktop will have to do.
Any suggestions would be very helpful and appreciated.
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Old July 31st, 2007, 08:52 AM   #2
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Welcome to DVinfo Dale! The GL2 forum is for discussion the the camera from Canon so I've moved your post to our "Non Linear Editing on the Mac" forum which is where it belongs.

I think the MacBook Pro will be a good choice. We should probably know a little more about what kind of camera she uses and what format the video is in to be able to offer specific advice. Does she use a GL2? If so then any of the new machines will be more than powerful enough. But you should also find out if there's other software she needs to run, such as After Effects.

Generally speaking, get the fastest machine you can afford and max it out with as much memory as it will hold. I'm still using the older generation of Powerbook and G5 desktop machines, so I'll leave it to others to help with specifics.
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Old July 31st, 2007, 10:06 AM   #3
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Calabash North carolina
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Macbook Pro

Thanks for moving my post to the correct place, I appreciate that. My daughter does use a GL2 to shoot with. As far as other programs I know you are right when you say she will need????? That always seems to be the case doesn't it? It's like me, I just bought a canon 30d and now I just realized all of those L lenses that I NEED. I know she has all the programs on her computer at church but I'm not sure if she could use the same ones without buying permission to use them or not. I guess thats kind of how you say that...This is new to me I'm sure that isn't new to you from my one
You know you can have 10k in this field and still be small time.

Thanks for you help.
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Old July 31st, 2007, 10:15 AM   #4
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Location: Madison, WI
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Hi Dale,

A Macbook Pro with the new processors should work for her - on the road it will definitely help vs. having nothing and like you said, less time she has to spend away from home editing things at the church. Get at least the 15", the 17" model would be the best. The RAM and video card will need to be maxed if you can afford to do that. An external hard drive would be good too - that way she can move her projects easily between the laptop and the desktop.

As for software, you'll need to purchase that separately. If your daughter is a student in any capacity, you can get the Final Cut Pro Studio at a very good price (about 1/2 off the normal price). You might want to call the church though and find out what exactly they are using because if you get the wrong software she will not be able to edit projects on both (ie. Final Cut Pro 5.1, Final Cut Pro 6, Final Cut Express).

I hope this helps.
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Old July 31st, 2007, 10:33 AM   #5
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Calabash North carolina
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Thanks Lisa

Oh yes that helps me a great deal. I really appreciate you taking the time to tell me all of that.
Is there a good article that I can read on shooting techniques. She has a Canon GL2 and I am also thinking about buying another one so that I can go with her to some of her jobs and I would like to learn as much as possible and teach her at the same time.

Thanks Lisa,
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Old July 31st, 2007, 10:43 AM   #6
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Location: Madison, WI
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Glad the info helped! As far as camera basics, there is actually a bit in the manual (very small amount). If you search google, i'm sure you'll turn up some interesting and useful articles, also a lot of junk. There are DVDs available online and at your local electronics stores. I'm more of a book/tutorial learner myself, so I'm more inclined to recommend books.

I do recommend picking up this book if you can find it

Bare Bones Camera Course for Film & Video

Used $6.75
New $8.95

No ideas if any of the site sponsors have this, I haven't seen it in their listings. I have seen it on other online bookstores. It is a great book and I have all my cameramen read it (when I use friends to help me out occasionally). It's quick to read and has some great diagrams to explain what the text is saying.
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Old August 2nd, 2007, 07:29 AM   #7
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What Lisa said about confirming the software the church uses is good advice, and you may also be able to make use of the church as a resource.

I work with a lot of churches on promotional videos and know that some denominations have arrangements with software and hardware vendors (I'm sure Abode and Apple are among these) that provide discounts for the church staff that are often equal to or better than 'student discounts'.

Check with the church and see if you can buy some or all of what you're looking for through them, if they are taking advantage of these discounts.
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Old August 3rd, 2007, 01:22 PM   #8
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Dale- I use a macbook pro with 4gb of ram to edit SD live concerts. So far I havent cut one with more than 4 cams, but it handled it with no problems whatsoever. I think I could easily go to 6 cams. Another plus is she can use the laptop with audio software to grab the audio feed off the board at the events, or use a firewire mixer to track it out. Comes in real handy during the editing phase!
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Old August 3rd, 2007, 02:55 PM   #9
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There are copies of that book out there:
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Old August 3rd, 2007, 11:45 PM   #10
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Hey Dale

also worth cosidering is approaching the church to see if they are willing or able to share their license ... not entirely sure how legal that may be, but my reasoning is that the license holder is permitted to install FCP5.1 or above on their desktop system and also on their laptop. If the church does not have a laptop, and considering that your daughter would be using the laptop, potentially, to work on the church videos at home, as well as her own projects, then they might be willing to nominate her laptop as their legal laptop install. of course, if your daughter stopped working for the church she would obviously have to purchase her own license.

as regards the MacBook Pro, it is an ideal mobile editing system. our crews contribute edited news packages from all around the globe, all cut on location on 17" MBP's, and then FTP'd back to our broadcast centers.

as the others have already noted, its highly recommend to get as much RAM as you can afford (the latest MBP with 4GB RAM absolutely flies)

an external hard disc is essential. a bus powered firewire 800 raid would be ideal, such as G-Technology's G-Raid-mini (320GB) or Lacie's Little Big Disc (320GB). for best performance i'd also recommend that you configure the laptop with a 7200rpm internal drive, the 160GB drive on the build to order page will be fine (but even better if you can get one of the 200GB or 250GB drives that are available elsewhere).

get the matte screen rather than glossy (with field editing its sometimes difficult to control the environment in which you're asked to edit, if theres a lot of light the reflections on the glossy screen can make editing a little more tricky ... although the glossy screen is very nice if you're editing in a controlled environment)

if you can afford all these extra's, then get the full HD display option too. not only do you gain a little extra, and much valued, screen real estate, but also if your daughter starts working with HD, as she surely will, then she'll have the added benefit of pixel for pixel mapping when viewing a full HD image.

(all thats said and done, a plain vanilla off the shelp MBP also works a treat ... mine is a bulk standard 17" MBP, first gen 2.16Ghz Intel Core Duo, 1GB RAM, 160GB 5400rpm internal drive, and it works just fine with all the Final Cut Studio applications including FCP versions 5 and 6)

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