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Old May 20th, 2010, 06:56 PM   #1
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Log and Transfer w/ Mac i7

I'm planning on changing my workflow from HDV to AVCHD (Panasonic or Sony), and I was wondering if anyone had any experience with the log and transfer process with the newer i7 processors.

Right now I have a 2.8Ghz C2D MacBook Pro with 4GB RAM and 512mb nVidia graphics. Log and transfer of sample HMC150 clips take about realtime to convert to ProRes.

Can anyone tell me the advantages (if any) of upgrading my machine to a i7 MacBook Pro or i7 iMac desktop? Will this make a significant difference in the log and transfer conversion time? If anyone has a new i7 machine, about how fast is the conversion for AVCHD footage?
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Old May 20th, 2010, 10:37 PM   #2
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In order of importance

1. Processor
2. Processor
3. Processor

* by Processor I mean cores first, then clock speed. L&T seems to balance the transcode workload fairly evenly across all cores, without maxing them out. After all that, hard disks + architecture start to come into play
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Old May 20th, 2010, 10:52 PM   #3
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I did assume processors matter the most in this case, but can anyone tell me the kind of performance boost a quad core will make over a dual at similar clock speeds? Twice as fast?
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Old May 21st, 2010, 06:45 AM   #4
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Try this link

This link is to a test of an i5 and i7 Macbook pro. He didn't do a log and transfer, but he did some other test and gives a good indication of what speeds to expect. Might help you.
AnandTech.com - Apple's 15-inch Core i5 MacBook Pro: The One to Get?
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Old May 23rd, 2010, 07:33 PM   #5
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I loaded up a flash drive with HMC150 source footage and went to my local apple store. Using the stopwatch function on my wristwatch, I found some rough estimates on the speed increases in FCP's log and transfer utility. Findings below, they're quite dramatic:

Time to convert ≈30 second clip in 1080i60

2009 MBP 2.8GHZ Core2Duo, 4GB RAM, 7200rpm HD ≈30 seconds (1.0x realtime)
2010 MBP 2.66GHZ Core i7, 4GB RAM, 5400rpm HD ≈21 seconds (1.5x realtime)
2010 iMac 2.8GHZ Core i7, 4GB RAM, 7200rpm HD ≈15 seconds (2.0x realtime)

Please keep in mind these are VERY rough numbers, but the iMac absolutely SCREAMS in the conversion. It's considerably faster than the MBP Core i7. This was for 1080i60 footage in AVCHD, when I tried a 720p24 clip on the iMac, it was done before I realized what was going on. Perhaps 7 or 8 seconds for a 30 second clip.

Very impressive, and I feel that an iMac i7 would be worth the price for the increase in productivity when logging large amounts of footage (oh, and rendering too!). The 27 inch display is pretty nice too. I didn't test a MacPro, but I'm sure it would be even more incredible.
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Old May 23rd, 2010, 08:03 PM   #6
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Question

I wonder how a MBP with a 7200 rpm drive would have faired? And isn't the iMac available with a quad core?
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Old May 24th, 2010, 01:38 PM   #7
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The Core i7 processors are the quad cores. Makes sense why they're so much faster.
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