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Old May 26th, 2008, 09:17 AM   #1
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New aluminium 24" iMac's... Good enough for Pro Res capture and Color?

Hi there,

I have some project work approaching which will involve capturing hdv footage, chopping shots into one minute clips, colouring, mild compositing (afx) and exporting out as h.264's.

My budget isn't huge and instead of spending over £2,000 on a mac pro (without a screen) i'm hoping a new iMac will be good enough for the job.

I found a few threads on here in regards to iMacs and fcp studio 2 but they seem to be referring to the older models.

The main concerns appear to be that iMacs are unable to capture in Pro Res (no fw800), not being able to use Color very well (poor graphics card) and the screen not being at all accurate for colour correction.

Are these concerns still relevant with the aluminium models?

For £1,400 ish i could buy a 2.8ghz (duo) 24" iMac with 4gb's of ram, 500gb hd and 512mb gfx card.

According to the apple site these machines come with fw800 and that upgraded gfx card sounds pretty beefy.

For colouring is there much difference between the iMac's new glossy screens and the 23" apple display?

In an ideal world i would buy a mac pro and one of the 23" displays but currently that's out of my reach...

If anyone has any experience doing anything similar on one of the new models it would be great to hear their thoughts..

Thanks

Stick
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Old May 26th, 2008, 09:52 AM   #2
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For what it's worth, on a white iMac 2.16GHz, I'm capturing ProRes over FW400 just fine (other than some issues with timecode coming over, but I believe that is a JVC/FCP issue).
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Old May 26th, 2008, 11:29 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by Stick Tully View Post
Hi there,

The main concerns appear to be that iMacs are unable to capture in Pro Res (no fw800), not being able to use Color very well (poor graphics card) and the screen not being at all accurate for colour correction.

Are these concerns still relevant with the aluminium models?
All iMacs now come with one FireWire 400 port and one FireWire 800 port and the graphics cards go up to NVIDIA GeForce 8800 GS with 512MB of GDDR3 memory on the 24 inch. Don't know how these ones work with Color but you have the option of using an external monitor to check the accuracy of the colour.
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Old May 27th, 2008, 07:09 AM   #4
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You'll be able to work with Color and Prores.

Color accurate, because of the glossy screen is a problem though... How much of a problem, you decide.
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Old May 27th, 2008, 03:05 PM   #5
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thanks for all of the replies guys, really appreciated.

I'll try to do some more research and let you know how i get on

if anyone else has any experience with this please let me know!

cheers

stick
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Old May 27th, 2008, 05:19 PM   #6
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You can work with the glossy screen if you can turn off the lights in the room and have a lamp behind the computer screen, like a wall sconce over it. Anything even a little to the front of the screen will give you reflections.
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Old May 27th, 2008, 05:30 PM   #7
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A friend of mine made a hood for his using matte board and velcro. It definitely helps with glare.
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Old June 6th, 2008, 05:08 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Stick Tully View Post
I'll try to do some more research and let you know how i get on
Did you end up getting it? I may be facing the same situation in needing to go for an iMac as an intermediate edit station until I can afford what I really want.
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Old June 7th, 2008, 04:25 AM   #9
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Did you end up getting it? I may be facing the same situation in needing to go for an iMac as an intermediate edit station until I can afford what I really want.
I've decided to wait a while longer and get a mac pro. I would have spent £1400 on an iMac which may or may not have been able to capture pro res without trouble and i couldnt find any proof that color would work well, plus the glossy screen put me off slightly.

For a bit more i can get a mac pro, use my existing screen and build up the extra ram, hd space & screen I cant afford right away over a few months

eventually i should have a mac pro with 4gb ram, 512gfx card, 500gb+ of storage in raid/striped & a 24" dell monitor

..well, thats the plan.

Thanks to everyone for all their help and posts in this thread! I'll let you know how i get on with the mac pro (hopefully at the end of the month)
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Old June 7th, 2008, 05:24 AM   #10
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I have a 2.8g i-mac 24 inch and run FCP studio 2 fine, it has 4 gig ram and will do HDV and pro res absolutely fine. I have g-tech fw800 raid drives and the only thing it will not do is full 8 or 10 bit uncompressed but this is nothing to do with the mac other than the fact it doesnt have an esata port for the higer disk speeds required.

Having said that I also have a macbook pro so if I do need to do uncompressed I can use tat but if all your work is destined for output for the web or HDV then an i-mac will be fine for now.

The screen is also fine for colour correction and I have a dual screen set-up:
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v6...s/DSC_0191.jpg
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Old June 7th, 2008, 05:28 AM   #11
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I have a 2.8g i-mac 24 inch and run FCP studio 2 fine, it has 4 gig ram and will do HDV and pro res absolutely fine. I have g-tech fw800 raid drives and the only thing it will not do is full 8 or 10 bit uncompressed but this is nothing to do with the mac other than the fact it doesnt have an esata port for the higer disk speeds required.

Having said that I also have a macbook pro so if I do need to do uncompressed I can use tat but if all your work is destined for output for the web or HDV then an i-mac will be fine for now.

The screen is also fine for colour correction and I have a dual screen set-up:
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v6...s/DSC_0191.jpg
thats interesting to hear.. i like your set up too :)

have you used Apple Color much on the iMac?
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Old June 8th, 2008, 08:34 AM   #12
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I must admit I havent used colour much but the spec for my set-ups will do any aspect of HDV with great speed, I use the Nattress filters a lot and they cover most aspects of correction on the time line.
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