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Old January 29th, 2008, 06:53 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by Jerrod Cordell View Post
What kind of documentary are you making? If you're going to be out in the field a lot, maybe you could consider a Macbook Pro. Either a 17" or a 15" with a Dell 24" monitor (the exact same price, lol).

And I'm editing on the previous generation 20" iMac, and Final Cut and Color work fine. Sure it's kind of slow in Color because of the graphics card and I only have 2GB of RAM, but it still works fine.
Thanks for your response Jerrod. I've considered the MacBook Pro, but I don't really need a laptop at this point. It's probably worth a second thought though.

It's really nice to hear that you are able to work, albeit slowly, in Color on your iMac. May I ask in what ways it is slow (I should mention, I have not as yet used the program), is it slow just on renders or does moment-to-moment use become tedious as well?

I don't mind walk away renders all that much, they give me a nice break from time-to-time, but being bogged down in a realtime scenario can be frustrating.
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Old January 29th, 2008, 07:52 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by Travis Breitenbach View Post
Hm, How's this workaround: I could still get a 1TB drive from which I would run my OS/apps and also use as back-up for my external 1 TB 1394b, which I would work off of... Only problem is that I can see myself generating some uncompressed HD through stop-motion animation and AE and I would not feel comfortable working with that footage of off 1394b.
If you use ProRes instead of uncompressed HD a FW800 RAID-0 setup (like something offered from g-tech or caldigit) should be able to handle it.


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Old February 1st, 2008, 03:48 AM   #18
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I've edited a dozen or so projects on a 24" Imac over the past year. Has absolutely no problem cutting HDV. In fact, lately I've been transcoding to Prores HQ and it cuts that fine as well.

For colour correction, we use the Magic Bullet Colorista plug-in which works very well and is very easy.

I have two FW800 drives daisy chained to the Imac with all my media on them and it works well. This is in a production environment, we haven't had any problems.

I now have a Mac Pro on the way, which I am looking forward to for five key reasons:
1) I can hook up an external HD monitor via a Blackmagic card for more accurate colour grading
2) It will render faster
3) Motion will work a lot faster with the 8800 graphics card
4) I'll be able to use color (though for sheer speed I think I'll stick with colorista for day to day work
5) Having multiple internal SATA drives will mean I can run more layers of video at the same time without choking.

For cutting a documentary, I'd go for the Imac with 4gigs internal ram and firewire 800 drives. It'll do fine. I'd even recommend the 20" model, and use the extra cash for a second monitor.

Just my thoughts,

Josh
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Old February 1st, 2008, 03:54 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by Travis Breitenbach View Post
I don't mind walk away renders all that much, they give me a nice break from time-to-time, but being bogged down in a realtime scenario can be frustrating.
Just reading this bit again, I think in that case the Imac will suit you fine. Just make sure you max out the ram and keep your media on external drives.

I wouldn't go with the macbook pro unless you need portability. I also cut on one but find the Imac just so much nicer to use with its full size keyboard, better sitting position and nicer monitor. It also needs to render less often in order to display video as its graphics card is slightly better.
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Old February 4th, 2008, 03:13 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by Andrew Kimery View Post
You'd need an external monitor to grade on and a box (such as the Matrox MXO or AJA io HD) to get a signal out of the iMac and into the monitor.

-A
How much better is that compared to running out through the vga plug on the back of the imac. I run a Samsung HDTV via mini DVI-VGA cable from the back of my imac and works fine. I don't mess with color much, so grading is not that important to me right now. So I just ball park the color if there are any problems, then move on.

If I were going to film or large budget broadcast I wouldn't even bother with the imac of course for rendering time sake....

...but do you find a BIG difference running the Matrox MXO out to a HDTV vs just running a mini DVI to VGA cable? $1,000 is a tough pill to swallow for super accurate color correction unless I can see a $1,000 difference side by side on the same monitor. $1,000 buys me 2/3 of my next tripod.
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Old February 4th, 2008, 03:42 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by Alex Humphrey View Post
How much better is that compared to running out through the vga plug on the back of the imac. I run a Samsung HDTV via mini DVI-VGA cable from the back of my imac and works fine. I don't mess with color much, so grading is not that important to me right now. So I just ball park the color if there are any problems, then move on.

If I were going to film or large budget broadcast I wouldn't even bother with the imac of course for rendering time sake....

...but do you find a BIG difference running the Matrox MXO out to a HDTV vs just running a mini DVI to VGA cable? $1,000 is a tough pill to swallow for super accurate color correction unless I can see a $1,000 difference side by side on the same monitor. $1,000 buys me 2/3 of my next tripod.
Blimey...how much is your next tripod Alex? I thought my Libec was pricey.
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Old February 4th, 2008, 08:23 PM   #22
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Blimey...how much is your next tripod Alex? I thought my Libec was pricey.
Looking at a few when I have the time off to make my way to Sacramento or Los Angeles. $1,200 to $1,800. (BH video pricing, so MSRP would be about 15% higher) I did pick up as a lark the Mathews $180 tripod. It's friction but it's a nice friction. 10x better than my Manfrotto 501 ProVideo... which is good for nothing more than a light stand. Unfortunatly.. my JVC HD110 with DTE, IDX, Sennheiser, varizoom controller monstrosity is a bit much for the tripod. I had to add a 2nd mounting plate just to balance out the camera.... The Mathews would be a wonderfull tripod for a FX1 and smaller. At $180. I would have lost that much money taking a day off of work and driving the 3 hours to Sacramento just to look at one... then if I had wanted it, it would have cost me another $180 to actually buy it. So i'm pleased... but it's still wiggly at 16x max zoom.

Sachtler FSB-6 for $1,492 have had good reviews.
Miller DS-20 for about the same
Libec 60m for a little more or even
Cartoni F103. It all depends on how they are in person with my gear on it.

but yup.. the Mathews is the old sub contractor for Libec, so the Mathews 1 tripod is a hybrid of two of the Libecs for a hundred or so less. not bad, but the bubble level is worthless on the Mathews...
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Old February 4th, 2008, 09:25 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by Alex Humphrey View Post
...but do you find a BIG difference running the Matrox MXO out to a HDTV vs just running a mini DVI to VGA cable? $1,000 is a tough pill to swallow for super accurate color correction unless I can see a $1,000 difference side by side on the same monitor. $1,000 buys me 2/3 of my next tripod.
I've never used the MXO+23" ACD setup, but the difference I see from consumer TVs to b'cast monitors is pretty big. The MXO gives you a b'cast accurate signal and coupled w/the 23" ACD gives you a monitoring solution that, according to Shane Ross, is nearly as good as using a BM or AJA card w/a Sony b'cast HD CRT (which probably cost around $10k new). Using the DVI-to-VGA adapter, AFAIK, will not get you an accurate signal and how much difference you'll see between that and an MXO on a consumer HDTV set I have no idea because consumer sets are geared to make "pretty pictures" as opposed to "accurate pictures". W/that being said I used to use a DV deck hooked up to an SD consumer TV and calibrated it as best I could by eye. When that became a limiting factor for me I bought a low-end SD b'cast monitor, and when I start working w/HD I'll probably go the MXO route. I've never had an "ideal" solution, but I just try and do the best I can w/what I have (which is the most I think you can ask of anyone).

Whether it's worth it or not depends on your needs. You look at the MXO and go, "That's 2/3 of a tripod." I'd look at a $1500 tripod and go, "WTF am I going to use that for?" :)


-A
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Old February 5th, 2008, 06:23 AM   #24
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^^ Aye - that's a heck of a lot for a tripod...quite possibly way, way down my list. I have a Libec LS38 which for a couple of hundred quid is fantastic - really strong and sturdy with a nice fluid head. Of course, adding a whole new host of equipment to it might test it then I could see where the extra money might go (although I'd hang weights from the centre first off).

What I could really do with (aside from extra gear for post on the iMac) is a decent field monitor - gauging (even with the onboard cam tools such as focus assist/zebra) light levels and focus detail is tough on those 2.5" LCD's...
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