Comments on proposed workstation spec please... at DVinfo.net

Go Back   DV Info Net > Apple / Mac Post Production Solutions > Final Cut Suite

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


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old November 28th, 2006, 01:14 PM   #1
Major Player
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: San Diego, California
Posts: 505
Comments on proposed workstation spec please...

Hi;

I'm just starting out buying a new HD editing workstation. If have a moment, please comment on the specs below. I'll be using Final Cut pro as the NLE, and it will be used solely for HDV editing.

Dell 30" display: 3007WFP
Apple Mac Pro
- two 2.66GHz intel Xeon CPUs
- 2GB RAM
- 500GB 7200 Serial ATA drive
- NVidia GEforce 7300 256MB

thanks!
Greg Quinn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 28th, 2006, 10:15 PM   #2
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: New York City
Posts: 2,615
Looks good. Get another internal drive.
__________________
William Hohauser - New York City
Edit/Camera/DCP production/Animation
William Hohauser is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 29th, 2006, 12:28 PM   #3
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: portland oregon
Posts: 73
Greg,
Here are the specs on my g5.

Two 2.66GHz Dual-Core Intel Xeon
4GB (4 x 1GB)
250GB 7200-rpm Serial ATA 3Gb/s
ATI Radeon X1900 XT 512MB (2 x dual-link DVI)
Apple Cinema HD Display (23" flat panel)
Apple Cinema HD Display (23" flat panel)
One 16x SuperDrive
Both Bluetooth 2.0+EDR and AirPort Extreme
Apple Wireless Keyboard and Apple wireless Mighty Mouse - U.S. English
Mac OS X - U.S. English
AppleCare Protection Plan for Mac Pro/Power Mac (w/or w/o Display) - Auto-enroll

I hired mike @HD 4 INDIES to consult on putting an editing suite together to cut HDV and this is what we came up with.

In addition to the one internal drive I would suggest that you get a couple more internal Seagate 250 drives from Silverado Systems. The 250s are cheaper per gig then the 500 and when a project is complete you can pull the drive for safekeeping and plug a new one in.

The up-graded graphics card will keep you moving at a good clip as well as the 4 gigs of ram the FCP can work with. Nothing is worse then getting a new box and having to deal with speed issues. I think that it is worth it to spend the money to keep yourself happy and the work moving smoothly.

My choice with the monitor set up would be dual configuration; this will allow much more flexibility then a single monitor.
Scott Tebeau is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 29th, 2006, 02:41 PM   #4
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Espa - Norway
Posts: 151
As mentioned:

It is not recomended to have your project and media files on your system drive.

I'd have filled her up with disks...

I like the Dell as well

And the ATI 1900


Gunleik
__________________
Red? Sure!
Gunleik Groven is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 29th, 2006, 04:10 PM   #5
Wrangler
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Mays Landing, NJ
Posts: 11,542
Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Tebeau
Greg,
Here are the specs on my g5.
Just a little nitpick... if it has an Intel processor then it isn't a G5. The G5 was the IBM/Motorola/Freescale "PowerPC" architecture which Apple has abandoned in the Intel transition.
Boyd Ostroff is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 29th, 2006, 05:48 PM   #6
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Chicago, Illinois
Posts: 28
Well, Greg, I must say I'm a bit jealous over here of those intel processors. I've played with those machines, and they're lighting fast.

I've shot two feature films from script to DVD without anything but a bunch of internet research and help from people in places like this. I've got a few thoughts for you, which i'll break up into categories, but the most important thing to remember is that all the information you'll ever need is absolutely available to you if you're willing to put the time and effort into both research and correcting your own mistakes along the way.

My thoughts:

STORAGE: You're going to need more. Depending on what you plan on shooting, maybe a lot more. Since I've been shooting features, I eat up a lot of tape and prefer the flexibility of capturing most of it. As such, I dedicate a 1TB external FW800 drive to each film. As you've got a bunch of extra drive bays, you'll save money and increase your speed and reliability by going with internal drives. However, if and when you run out of room in the box, FW800 data rates have always done right by me. The easiest thing to do is dig a little on data rates, do the math by how much you think you're going to be shooting, and then make sure to get yourself some buffer. When you've got all the data on a drive, you want to make sure you've got a good 25% buffer of unused space.

MEMORY: For the editing and rendering process, the more the merrier. Buy whatever you can afford. Don't buy bottom-of-the-barrel, but there's no need to buy top-end either. Just make sure you get a year warranty on your sticks. I find if they're going to fail, it'll happen fast or not at all. In my dual 2.5ghz G5 box, I've got 4.5gb of RAM, and i'd take more in a heartbeat if I could afford it.

DISPLAYS: No question, I agree wholeheartedly with Scott: Dual displays are one of the more valuable workflow investments out there. I've got two 23" Cinema displays, and I wish I'd have bought a 30" for my main, and a 23" for my Browser. You can get away with one monitor, but you'll be much happier with two. I do run them both off of 256mb of VRAM on my card and haven't noticed a single issue, but you'll never be sorry on a hardware upgrade.


That's all I can think of for the moment. Good luck, and have fun.


Chris Marty
Chris Marty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 29th, 2006, 07:27 PM   #7
Major Player
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: New York City, NY
Posts: 316
I agree with the above... Dual display is wonderful. I'd rather have two 23" displays than one 30".

Also, definitely get more storage space. I just got a Western Digital "My Book" 1TB Firewire800 RAID 0, and it's great! Super fast and responsive, and less than $500. Can't recommend it enough!
Jaime Valles is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 30th, 2006, 09:31 AM   #8
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Espa - Norway
Posts: 151
I think the thing you'll miss the first (after having the memory and storage space you need) is a good videomonitoring solution.

I have both the Dell 24" and the Apple 23", and would not monitor on any of those, if avoidable. The Dell is the worst though. Very grainy.

If on a budget, I'd consider swap'ing one of the datamonitors for an AJA/BM i/o videocard and a proper videomonitor. If you have a look around the forums here and elsewhere the most common confusion/dissatisfction factor is that people monitor on datamonitors and get confused to whether what they see is actually "right".

The simple answer is: No, it isn't, and it won't ever be. On a computer screen.

I have the Panny 17" (BH - whatever) HD monitor, but even for HD work, you'd be more happy to have a used Sony SD videomonitor to work with for colors etc, than to blow up the inage on a grainy Dell.

The viewer image (on a data-monitor) from FCP is a proxy-image - even with Digital Cinema Desktop, and if you're not comfortable with that and your scopes, you'll need a videomonitor. One that you can calibrate is to be prefered.

If you're working in DV, it is far better to watch your image through your camera (Firewire to s-video) to a cheapo CRT TV than on a 30" Dell.
Do NOT use a cheapo LCD TV, though...

Gunleik
(Who really likes his Dell & Apple computer screens...)
__________________
Red? Sure!
Gunleik Groven is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 30th, 2006, 12:05 PM   #9
Major Player
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Columbus, Ohio
Posts: 423
I'd have to agree with Gunleik, even if it's an inexpensive CRT TV that you use, have some type of monitor. I didn't know how much I actually needed one, until I picked up a used Magnavox off of Craig's list for $40. I currently run the TV off of a Canopus ADVC 110, but I'm sure running it through your camera would work well too.

I know I read somewhere that an video feed decoded with hardware is superior to one decoded with software, too, but I can't remember where or the specifics...
__________________
"... the drama is on your doorstep..." - John Grierson
www.grvideo.net
Kevin Randolph is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 30th, 2006, 02:40 PM   #10
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Espa - Norway
Posts: 151
I'll just quickly explain why I'd have the ATI GPU.

Motion depends on the GPU for rendering, and when now FCP also has adopted that plug-in structure, there is some real gain to get from the GPU.

Today a real nice (gpu dependant) compositor plug-in was announced, just to give you the idea.

http://www.dvgarage.com/prod/prod.ph...5&sub=features


We now like big GPU's -;)

Gunleik
__________________
Red? Sure!
Gunleik Groven is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 2nd, 2006, 06:36 PM   #11
Major Player
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: San Diego, California
Posts: 505
Thanks a million to everyone who's replied to the thread, some very good suggestions about disks, GPU's and monitors which I'll certainly look into.
Greg Quinn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 3rd, 2006, 03:32 PM   #12
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: CSL BCS MX
Posts: 67
SAS Drives on Mac Quads?

I'm really trying to understand the Apple logic in not optioning 15K SAS (Serial Access SCSI) drives on the Mac Quad platform. I'm not a big fan of the 7200 rpm SATA drives they offer, from either a speed or reliability standpoint . As even a single SAS drive clocks in at 125MB read/write, think uncompressed, even better with RAID. Very quick and totally bulletproof for critical online. Firewire is fine for offline/backup.

Even more bizarre was their choice of ATA100 (IDE) drives on their external XSERVE RAID box. I'm guessing they were constrained by delayed OEM controllers for SAS. Atto's the only SAS controller vendor now that Adaptec dropped out of the Mac market and LSI just does chipsets.

They do offer three SAS drives on the XSERVE line. Wonder if FCP runs on OS Server? (update, it does!)

Last edited by Jay Fisk; December 3rd, 2006 at 05:21 PM.
Jay Fisk is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 3rd, 2006, 03:44 PM   #13
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: CSL BCS MX
Posts: 67
<dupe delete>

<dupe delete>

Last edited by Jay Fisk; December 3rd, 2006 at 05:11 PM. Reason: <dupe delete>
Jay Fisk is offline   Reply
Reply

DV Info Net refers all where-to-buy and where-to-rent questions exclusively to these trusted full line dealers and rental houses...

Professional Video
(800) 833-4801
Portland, OR

B&H Photo Video
(866) 521-7381
New York, NY

Z.G.C.
(973) 335-4460
Mountain Lakes, NJ

Abel Cine Tech
(888) 700-4416
N.Y. NY & L.A. CA

Precision Camera
(800) 677-1023
Austin, TX

DV Info Net also encourages you to support local businesses and buy from an authorized dealer in your neighborhood.
  You are here: DV Info Net > Apple / Mac Post Production Solutions > Final Cut Suite

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

 



Google
 

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 01:49 PM.


DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2017 The Digital Video Information Network