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Old January 7th, 2004, 09:12 AM   #1
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Buying a New Apple

This will be my office computer and my amatuer video editing system as well. I'm working on a 10 minute DV comedy, but may do 30min-1hr stuff later. First, I'll use iMovie, but probably move up to FCE2. I want to output to DVD's burned in the Apple.

I'm cheap.

I was wondering if the $1100 eMac (G4 1GHz/256MB/80GB) with Superdrive would cut the mustard? Or should I look at something like an $1800 iMac 17" SuperDrive (G4/1.25GHz/256MB/80GB)?

Any thoughts on the amount of RAM, external Firewire HD size or software would be appreciated.

BTW, I currently have an iMac DV+SE (G3/OS9.1/500MHz/256MB/30GB), but it crashes all the time.

Thanks.

Cheers...
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Old January 7th, 2004, 10:01 AM   #2
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I do what you are describing on a 17" iMac. Works for me. Sometimes I long for the faster rendering of a dual processor G5, but rarely.

I think the flat screen iMacs are simply fantastic machines that represent a very good value.

My home system is the same as you currently have. Back up all your data, reformat the drive and switch to Panther. Crashes and problems will be a thing of the past.

EDIT:

Add more RAM. Lots more RAM.
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Old January 7th, 2004, 10:07 AM   #3
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Jeff is right...the more RAM the better. But also you're going to need more HD space probably. That's enough to do a few, but then you're going to have troubles archiving vs. having enough space to work on new projects.

If you don't have the means right now, though...just get what you can and get started. You can always upgrade later. Better that than waiting.
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Old January 7th, 2004, 10:42 AM   #4
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John, is there any reason not to rely on FireWire drives? I just got a 120 GB Western Digital 7200rpm drive for 109.00 (after rebates). My plan, if they stay this cheap is just to archive to various drives and stick them in a closet when they get full. You couldn't buy removeable media for that kind of price. This was a special deal, but there will be others.
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Old January 7th, 2004, 10:50 AM   #5
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I edit on the flat-panel iMac and have three external FW drives I use for archiving on. No problems (though I capture and edit off the internal drive).
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Old January 7th, 2004, 10:51 AM   #6
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Nope...I use a LaCie myself. But in my case, some projects will drag on for a long while, and since I keep the "current" ones on my HD, that starts to eat up a lot of space. That's just my habit...keep it on the HD until it's complete, then archive it. I imagine there's no reason not to work directly from a peripheral drive...although I wonder how that might affect rendering speed and such.
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Old January 7th, 2004, 11:11 AM   #7
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Thanks for the replies.

Do you think 512MB of RAM is a good place to start?

I will get an external FW drive, I use one now for back-up and really like the portability.
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Old January 7th, 2004, 11:19 AM   #8
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Dan, go with at least 1Gb of RAM. More if your budget will allow.
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Old January 7th, 2004, 08:57 PM   #9
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Well, I stopped by CompUSA and they'll put 1 GB of RAM in an eMac for $200, another $300 for FCE2, and about $100 for an 80 GB FireWire drive. Bringing the grand total to about $1700. Seems like about the best deal going.
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Old January 8th, 2004, 12:17 AM   #10
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smalldog.com sells refurbs with apple warranties.

For the RAM, you can save a lot if you install it yourself and not buying it from Apple. With eMacs and iMacs it's hard to put RAM in though. I think there's a safety hazard you have to watch out for inside those things because the capacitor for the monitor stores some deadly voltage. You just have to be careful.

Remember to factor in the cost of a 2-button mouse.

A G4 tower would be nice since it allows dual monitors, dual processors (~70% boost), and internal hard drives (cheaper, faster, more problem-free). There is a price difference but it's not as much since you don't have to get a firewire enclosure.
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Old January 12th, 2004, 08:28 AM   #11
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I'm typing this on an eMac! 1 GHz, 1GB, 80 GB. This is a lot of machine for the money. Obviously, a dual processor G5 would be sweet. iMovie runs dandy-fast. I hope to get FCE2 soon (when it hits the local shelfs). I guess I'm saying, if you're on a tight budget, don't overlook the eMac.
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Old January 12th, 2004, 09:39 AM   #12
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Thanks for the update, Dan and keep us posted on your progress.
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