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


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Old January 13th, 2006, 04:40 AM   #1
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NLE - Mac or PC - pros/cons

Hi guys, I have a fair bit of experience with Adobe PP etc - (output mostly to finished DVD for customer). But "associates" are encouraging me to convert to MAC & FCP. I was brought up on Pc and I've never used Mac. My question is simple - what are pro's & cons.
Oh and I have no intentions of joining the HDV revolution for the forseeable future. MiniDV will reign with me for a while yet.

PaulD
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Old January 13th, 2006, 01:45 PM   #2
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I switched from Premiere to Final Cut Pro this past summer and therefore from PC to Mac.
It was probably the best thing I ever did. With premiere, I got all sorts of errors and it was just irritating - no exageration, I was troubleshooting my system more often than I was editing and Windows XP didn't help the situation either.
Now with Mac, all the software and hardware is made my Apple, so it all just works so much better. If I have an issue, I can call them and they'll come to my house and fix it.
I also like Final Cut Pro a lot better, most of which premiere copied in Premiere Pro. My favorite thing about FCP so far that Premiere didn't have is the multicam capability since I often shoot with mulitiple cameras and it saves a lot of time.
In general, I find OSX to be a lot smoother and more enjoyable to work with than XP
hope this helps
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Old January 14th, 2006, 03:22 AM   #3
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Thanks Andrew, I spend loads of time tweaking my system to maintain stability. Regarding your MAC, what specification did you go for?
Regards
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Old January 14th, 2006, 11:19 AM   #4
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I got the dual 2.0 G5 with 1gb of ram. On the way home, I stopped and bought a 250 gb SATA drive for inside (cheaper than having Apple add it). That's pretty much all that's really needed for editing DV. Since I work with multiple video streams at the same time, I also added an extra gb of ram (for a total of 2) last month and the place I work for provides a hard drive to use for their footage - a 400gb lacie firewire800 drive which saves my hard drives for personal use.
let me know if you have any other questions
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Old January 15th, 2006, 12:40 AM   #5
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Pros: You'll probably be happier while working. Probably... not definitely.

Cons: Your PC might start to really irritate you.

Every PC only place or person that I have set up with an FCP system has thanked me after a while. When they realized that the Mac and PC can live together and share the important files, Powerpoint for example, all their fears go away. And their editing is much more stress free. One university edits their video on a Mac but all their presentations are done with Dell notebooks. The Dell notebooks are within their slim budget. One client eventually threw out their PCs and went 100% Mac but that's an exception.
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Old January 15th, 2006, 02:04 AM   #6
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I used to use Macs years ago and liked them, but I got tired of the high cost of their computers and migrated to PCs about the same time I got interested in video production. Clearly Apple has done some good things since then, but I've found useful software for PCs which works fine for my purposes and has some advantages compared to Final Cut Pro. At this point either platform can be used effectively for making videos, and there are pluses and minuses to both. If Apple would finish adapting their OS to run on fully standard PC hardware (which they've almost done now), we could put an end to this discussion and just pick whatever software suits our needs without worrying about hardware. But hey, if you want to help pay Steve Jobs' mortgage instead of Bill Gates' mortgage, then go for it...
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Old January 15th, 2006, 07:50 AM   #7
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The high cost of the Macs is partially offset by the fact that they actually have a resale value - take a look at the price of used G4's on ebay and you'lll see what I mean. Generally PC's only have any value as doorstops when you change them.
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Old January 15th, 2006, 09:31 PM   #8
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How often do you hear about some big budget hollywood movie cut on Vegas, Avid Xpress, or even Adobe PP. Maybe those guys know something after all.
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Old January 15th, 2006, 09:50 PM   #9
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I've been working with Macs and making a living with them for more than a decade now, including working at a newspaper whose entire operation has been Mac-based.

My own editing systems have been Mac-based since 1996 and I've never had any serious problems. My first important video presentation was put together on a non-linear system that I purchased at the last minute and had eight days to set up, figure out and produce a finished product with an unforgiving deadline.

I was working on a Media 100 system at first and switched to FCP about 2 years ago.

If I had to boil it down, I'd say that I've always hit my deadlines and issues have always been about doing things better, not just getting it out the door.

As for cost, today's editing systems don't cost anywhere as much as they did back in 1996. And in professional applications, Macs pay for themselves quickly. Productivity is an important part of the equation when it comes to the true cost of any piece of equipment and in the case of Macs, they're very cost effective.
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Old January 15th, 2006, 10:07 PM   #10
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If Premiere Pro is working for you, I wouldn't jump ship until you need to upgrade or buy a new computer (usually 2-4 years). Don't fix it if it ain't broken.

If Premiere Pro is giving you grief, I'd checkout Sony Vegas instead (try the demo). It's a really good editing application that can do a lot more than Premiere Pro or Final Cut can (i.e. multirack audio like Audition or Soundtrack is already built-in). And many folks report it'll run on almost anything and is stable for them.

Now Final Cut is a good system for many people (i.e. third party capture cards + lots of user base for them, ease of use of both FCP and the Mac OS), but if money is an issue for you then I wouldn't bother. If this is a hobby, your money is better spent elsewhere. Editing programs will more or less do the same thing.
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Old January 21st, 2006, 07:21 PM   #11
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Emmm thanks guys. I think I've got the gist of your posts.
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