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Final Cut Suite
Discussing the editing of all formats with FCS, FCP, FCE

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Old June 1st, 2008, 09:32 PM   #1
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Building new mac

i purchased a mac book pro a few months back and love it. i have also started editing with fce. was useing avid liquid before. I am a newby produceing hunting and fishing videos. question is i am going to have a mac pro built what should i start with ie wich graffics card is the top of the line worth 2850.00? thats more than the base machine???? please list what the dos and donts should be buget around 10,000 but would like to be around 7-8000
Equipment being used:
Canon xl1s
canon xl2
canon gl2
canon a1 hd

Eddie Pelfrey is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 1st, 2008, 10:08 PM   #2
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To edit HDV material you don't need a Quadro 5600. Heck, I'm using a Geforce 7900 GT and it is working well (although it could be faster). As I understand it, most of the people that use those cards are graphical artists that are doing 3D modeling in 3DSMax and Maya.

For video post production I have not seen any results that show the Quadro cards are any better. I am waiting (and hoping) that someone can show me that these Quadro cards are worth the extra money.

Most of video editing is done in 2D, with perhaps a select few shots in 3D. While having a beefier graphics card can't hurt, it can also be overkill. Unless you are doing a lot of heavy After Effects work, the Geforce 8800GT should be just fine for you.

For the rest of the system you have to ask yourself, what do you need and what do you want? The base configuration for the MacPro will edit HDV material just fine, however, the more dressed up configurations will certainly do the work faster.
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Old June 2nd, 2008, 12:52 PM   #3
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Memory and hard drives are much more important than graphics cards when in comes to video editing. If you're going to move to FCP instead of FCE, make sure the video card is compatible with Color (Apple's colour correction and "looks" application - I know there are some limitations there).

I buy Apple "branded" RAM for the peace of mind. Many others think there is no advantage. Just make sure that all the RAM in your Mac is the same brand, speed etc. to ensure the minimum amount of troubles in the long run.
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Old June 2nd, 2008, 01:36 PM   #4
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I recently (Feb.) but in a new system consisting of the 17" Macbook Pro. I got the 7200 rpm drive, which is critical, high res screen and 4 megs of RAM. And, a 23" Apple Cinema Display monitor. The whole setup with FCP Studio 2 was under $7K...don't remember the exact figure now (I already had firewire drives). Works beautifully. I shoot everything 24p with the Canon XH A1 now, capture at HDV1080P24, edit in the HDV timeline. No problems editing HDV. Rendering is significantly faster than the older G5 (2 1gig processors) that I had been using.

Why not just use your MacBookPro? Get a second monitor, a keyboard and some external firewire drives and you're set. I did add one of those USB-powered cooling fan bases for the laptop. It wasn't overheating, but I felt it was getting a little too warm for comfort when plugged into AC power and when doing some heavy processing. The fan keeps it nice and cool even on the low, quiet speed.

If you go to the Apple sites, look up Studio 2 and you can see the equipment specs required for doing HDV. I could even have got by with the basic 2 gigs of RAM but decided to go with 4 (not purchased from Apple--their RAM prices are a ripoff).
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