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Old September 1st, 2004, 09:49 PM   #1
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G5 + FCPHD What to expect


With a dual 2.5, 4G Ram, 2HD, all whistles, oooh and aahh, what should I expect running FCP HD, and Motion? My main concern is the rendering time consuming and the frequent crashes from PC NLE. Rather than reading what the Tech Specs indicates, I prefere to hear how is it going in the real world. I'm about to get my hands on this system (near 8k big bucks) and just want to be sure

Thanks

Alexis
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Old September 1st, 2004, 09:55 PM   #2
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Upgrade your video card to get better performance out of Motion.
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Old September 1st, 2004, 10:02 PM   #3
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Thanks Jeff, the configurations is with the new Nvidia ready for the 30" display.
My main question is if Real Time editing will work fine here?
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Old September 2nd, 2004, 03:23 AM   #4
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The OS is what makes software crash. Mac OS X is so rock hard stable, its awesome. I don't think I've ever had FCP crash on me, motion I've had 2 i think (not too worried, 1.0)

I have a 15" PB and I do all my editing on the road and on the go. And RT still keeps me up to speed, the time that you do spend rendering is when your compositing a bunch of layers or using livetype, motion files, etc and with your G5 it should be sooo fast.

Anyhow, your best bet, head down to an Apple Store test that setup out.

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Old September 2nd, 2004, 06:34 AM   #5
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Alex, will you be editing DV or some other format?
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Old September 2nd, 2004, 07:32 AM   #6
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<<<-- Originally posted by Jeff Donald : Alex, will you be editing DV or some other format? -->>>
Jeff, Main format would be DV.
Thanks Alan for your comments, good to know...

Alexis
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Old September 2nd, 2004, 10:18 AM   #7
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Alexis, for editing DV your system will fly with the amount of ram etc. you are incorporating. It will also improve with the next update to OS X, and the release of FCP 5.
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Old September 6th, 2004, 06:42 PM   #8
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We'll be in this together, Alexis, starting this Wednesday 9/8/04 when WorldDance New York takes delivery of our first G5 2x2.5ghz.

Unlike yours, though, ours will arrive with only the basic 512mb of RAM.

There's so much controversy (or 'differing experiences,' anyway) over how much difference the volume of RAM makes to render time, our little company has decided to try the basic configuration before we spend another nickel.

First we heard there was a "2GB RAM sweetspot" and now it's "oops, no that's not right, it's 4GB RAM that's the sweetspot." But then someone else says 'render time is NOT about RAM at all' - !! That post (here at dvinfo) stopped me dead in my tracks. "Hey! Maybe we can save some money!"

I abs. don't mind plunking for 8GB of RAM if that will improve our department's productivity, but I DO mind plunking for 4GB of RAM if that's not cost effective.

Our box usually has only one-or-max-two apps open at a time: FCPHD, or Soundtrack, or DVD Studio Pro, or Photoshop CS. The fact that they're almost never all open at the same time means we don't need more RAM - I think.

I suspect we're gonna be happy with 512mb of RAM, because Activity Monitor consistently showed LOADS of unused RAM on our G4 2x1ghz CPU with 1.5ghz of RAM.

Stay tuned: If UPS delivers as promised I'll have a render report for you by the end of the week.
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Old September 6th, 2004, 11:35 PM   #9
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final cut pro, motion and dvd studio pro all recognize 4 gigs each so if your using all three at the same time..i can definetly see the reason to have 4+ gigs.
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Old September 6th, 2004, 11:55 PM   #10
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apple RAM is overpriced, 2X street prices for the same stuff.

crucial.com is a good place to shop. They aren't the cheapest but they offer good service (see resellerratings.com) and their RAM is conservatively rated and uses conservative settings (which means its less likely to fail on you).

For optimal performance, buy in pairs of the same model (all DIMMs the same model).

2- Real world experience:

Editing on a DP500 G4 FCP3
Multi-camera edit, lots of cuts on nests (bad idea- slows FCP down bigtime)
The project file size ballooned to about 30MB.
256MB to 512MB: Night and day difference. I actually needed to upgrade the RAM as Final Cut reported a "out of memory" error.
512MB to 756MB: Seemed to be faster, although I am not 100% sure.

You can take steps to lower RAM needs by making your project simpler and splitting things into sequences. Also avoid lots of nesting. This may also make it less likely you'll see the dreaded "preparing video for display". PVFD may be linked to how much RAM you have... I never really tested this though.

Big complicated Final Cut projects take more RAM.

3- The thing with RAM is that having an overkill of it makes no practical difference on speed. If you don't have enough however, you will see very noticeable slowdowns when the program has to load or unload things.

4- RAM makes no difference on render times, although it can make Final Cut feel smoother.
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Old September 7th, 2004, 02:38 AM   #11
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Using FCE, not FCP or FCPHD. But thought I would note the comment from the Apple sales person when I bought my refurbished 1.8GHz dual with additional 512mb RAM: 'We use Crucial." I doubt it was meant to be an endorsement. But it does go to the issue of what is expected to work. When I add RAM, I will probably add more of the same. I'm not a techie, so I just want it to work so I can get on with the stuff that I'm interested in.
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Old September 7th, 2004, 07:29 AM   #12
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Alexis,

You are going to be very pleased, especially with DV as opposed to uncompressed video. We use a dual 2ghz G5 with 2 gigs of ram with Aja IO for our uncompressed stuff and it works great. With DV you will be able to have more real time layers.

Enjoy.
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Old September 9th, 2004, 03:40 PM   #13
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Now in our second day of operating the 2x2.5ghz G5 with only 512mb of RAM, and so far, things are turning out as we anticipated.

Editing in FCP is faster in every way, but especially noticeable in small renders.

We estimate small renders are occurring approx. 5-times as fast as we experienced with our 2x1ghz G4 with 1.5mb RAM. This is greatly speeding our workaday work, and so we are really happy about that.

We have not yet done large renders so can’t speak to that yet.

Our view, as we mentioned earlier, is that we may not need to purchase more RAM because we rarely have more than one app open at a time, never connect this box to the web (so no e-mail or Safari), and noticed with our RAM-packed G4 that Activity Monitor (a very handy app found in every OSX machine) that most of our RAM was never being accessed in our method of work.

More to follow as our experience with the new machine grows.
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Old September 9th, 2004, 10:05 PM   #14
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Tonight we finished production of a 45-minute DVD, "Belly Dance for Body Shaping: Abs" - our next release - see:
http://www.neonissima.com/news.html#

We immediately opened DVD Studio Pro to do the "build" (encoding) and "format" (writing to DVD). With our 2x1ghz G4 with 1.5gb RAM the first part of this job used to take about 45 minutes and the second part about 15. Our new 2x2.5ghz G5 with 512mb RAM did the whole job in less than 15 minutes.
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Old September 12th, 2004, 07:05 PM   #15
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Thanks all for your comments.

Scott on what format are you editing?
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