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Discussing the editing of all formats with FCS, FCP, FCE


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Old March 26th, 2004, 11:52 PM   #1
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newbie questions

I've been previously editing on a PC with Vegas 3. I now want to switch over to a Mac with FCP 4. Having never owned a Mac before, I have minimal knowledge about them. Right now I'll be using the Mac mainly for editing short movies. However, I plan on editing a feature-length film within the next two years.

Can a top of the line G4 handle a feature-length project, or should I go with a G5? Would I need to make some modifications before editing? I've read in previous posts that I should wait until the 2nd generation G5's come out, but I need to purchase the Mac by June. I am looking to spend around $3000. One of my concerns is that within two years, G4's will be completely obselete.

Also, I plan on buying a Canon XL1-S. Has anybody encountered any problems using that camera with FCP 4?

Thanks
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Old March 27th, 2004, 11:06 AM   #2
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You will have no problems at all using the XL1S with FCP 4 (I've been using mine with it since FCP 3).

What do you mean by top of the line G4 ? Anything like a dual 450 G4 will do you fine.

( there is a thread in this section about what computer is good enough for FCP)

The important thing to remember is that they faster your computer (like a dual 1ghz G4) the faster things will render but the most important thing of all is to MAX OUT your RAM.

A G5 isn't necessary to cut a feature length film or even a short film but it might be nice to have a faster computer....

The things that are important is that it not be a G3 or below if you can help it. The G4 has the Altivec Accelleration tech that FCP and stuff like Phototshop can use to do filters and things faster.

And like I said above, max out the RAM immediately. Maxing out the RAM will make any computer better.

Let me know what kind of Mac you've got now and what your set up is and me and the others here will help you out.

Be sure and check out the interview with Walter Murch off the Apple site about how he cut COLD MOUTAIN with FCP.

You've made a good choice moving over to FCP (IMO), Apple has been busting their butts to make it the best package out there and with their acquisition of things like SHAKE and the coming of PIXLETS it will continue to be adopted by a LOT of editors
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Old March 27th, 2004, 03:46 PM   #3
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Murch edited the film on G4's. what might obsolete G4's is the move to HD. HD will definitely require greater speed etc. Purchasing a G5 will almost guarantee a good 4 to five years of production use. I purchased my dual 450 G4 in the summer of 2000, it's almost 4 years old, but still does everything I need. New G5's should be out by June. But I think the cautions regarding G5's is overdone. The latest OS update for Panther (10.3.3) seems to have done the trick. Almost everyone I know is doing much better with 10.3.3
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Old March 27th, 2004, 04:20 PM   #4
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Kevin,

I currently don't own a Mac. I'm editing on a Pentium 4 with Vegas Video 3.
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Old March 28th, 2004, 12:26 AM   #5
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you will be able to pick up a very nice G4 system ( I wouldn't go under a dual G4 450 though) for some nice prices since the G5's came out that will serve your needs nicely.

As I said, the big thing is RAM but Hard Drive space is always a need as well.
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Old April 2nd, 2004, 02:43 PM   #6
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A couple of things. First off, you should be able to get a dual 1.25 G4 dirt cheap now that the G5 has arrive and newer G5's are on the way. I have a dual 1.25 G4 and I edit a lot of 90-minute projects without a problem. It would be nice to have more real-time capabilities, but it's also nice not to have to pay $100,000 for an editing system this powerful now.

By the way, why are you choosing the XL1? The interchangable lens system? The reason I ask is that I have used both the XL1 and the GL2, and when I bought all new cameras last year, I bought 3 GL2's. I like their image quality better, not to mention they're much cheaper.
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Old April 2nd, 2004, 02:47 PM   #7
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After visting B & H today, I've decided to go with the DVX-100a rather then the XL1-S. I was really impressed with the 24p image, especially since I'm using it to shoot a feature film.
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