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Old December 13th, 2008, 05:53 PM   #1
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Need help with a new Editing Solution - From Scratch

I am going to start shooting video full-time on Jan 1st and I need some help on what kind of video editing system I should get.

I have a 5D2 with an indiSlider and stedicam. And that is it. Before I bought anything I wanted to get opinions from this awesome forum -!

Here is my task:

To shoot high quality / dynamically lit / night / artistic videos of a products the size of shoe boxes as well as a documentary. Most of my output will be to the web and in a few months I'll be outputting to web and DVDs.

I am very technical but new to the "new" video game. I used to do video back in the day when we had to have a huge encoder just to create MPEG-2 streams. I need to get all new hardware including PC or Mac (I hope that I can use a PC but I really don't mind if I have to go to a Mac - if it is more than 10% better then I would go with the Mac). I also assume that I need to get a separate audio recording system.

Can someone help me with the software / hardware that I should take a hard look at?

I look forward to posting up some footage next month... I know it isn't going to be great but I hope within 6 months I have something awesome! _steve
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Old December 13th, 2008, 06:28 PM   #2
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The first choice you have to make is PC or Mac. It's a personal preference decision for the most part, except if you want to make Blu-Ray disks. Apple do not officially support BD, although I've read that it can be done.

Picking one will help us all narrow your choices.
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Old December 13th, 2008, 06:47 PM   #3
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Let's go with a PC.... that is what everyone has at the office....
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Old December 14th, 2008, 06:11 AM   #4
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Let me touch on the software briefly first. To get started, you'll want an NLE and some way to output to your desired format. Adobe CS, Sony Vegas, and Avid are probably the most popular. This is a personal decision based upon what you want to do and if you like how it works. I suggest you get demos of any products that interest you and play with them for a while. I personally like Adobe CS3 because it gives me all the basic tools I need.

As to hardware, go as big and fast as you can now within your budget constraints. This will extend the useful life of your system. Here are some general minimum recommendations:

Processor: Quad core 6600 2.4GHz or better. The new Intel processor (i7, I think) sounds sexy but in reading the specs it doesn't yet offer performance at levels commensurate with its higher cost.

OS/Memory: This is tied to your OS selection. Vista Home Premium (32-bit) will work fine. This is what I have. With any 32-bit OS, the max memory you can access is a bit over 3GB, so 4GB is optimal. However Vista 64-bit will be more usable now and even better in the future. You'll want 8GB with this.

Disks: Internal SATA is the easiest way to go. 7,200RPM minimum. Keep the OS and applications on your C: drive, project files, scratch and cache on other drives. Drives are so cheap now, just get the biggest you can afford. At some point you'll need more space than you end up getting. You can go with RAID, but that's a level of complexity I don't think you need yet.

Video card: This is where I get fuzzy. I had an Nvidia 8500GT which was having some problems I never quite understood so I upgraded to an Nvidia 8800GT and it's worked. Nvidia seem to work better with video editing than ATI based upon reports I've read and some think that the quality of ATI products have suffered since being purchased by AMD. However, my 2nd machine has an older ATI 1050 which is pretty basic, but it worked just fine for what I wanted. Your selection here will depend upon the connections you want to make. Two computer monitors? Two monitors and an HD video monitor? Lots of options here. Your budget may make the decision for you.

Other basic considerations: You can buy a ready made PC from the usual suspects or build your own. Either will work. DIY will give you more options and could be cheaper. You'll want as many PCIe x16 slots as you can. Most consumer systems have only 1. This will limit your future expansion possibilities.

I need more coffee, so I'll let you chew on that for a while. I'm sure others have better/different suggestions. After all, I'm just a bozo on this bus.
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Old December 14th, 2008, 08:34 AM   #5
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^ Awesome info yet again.

I have $5,000 set aside for the PC and $1,000 for the hard drives. I was thinking of going with a Dell just because it is easy to configure and I have had good luck.

Can someone step me through the process of taking 30p video off of a memory card to getting into Premier Pro. Just the broad strokes is fine.... trying to wrap my head around the basics.
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Old December 14th, 2008, 06:36 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Mullholand View Post
Can someone step me through the process of taking 30p video off of a memory card to getting into Premier Pro.
-Insert card into computer or connect camera to computer
-Locate directory on card where video is stored
-Copy file from card to where you want on hard drive

I don't know what your equipment setup is but I don't expect it's any more complex than that.
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Old December 14th, 2008, 08:19 PM   #7
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^ Sorry.... I didn't mean to ask on that level. I'm very technical and transferring files is not a problem. I read people using Vegas program and just wondered if that had to be used before Premier Pro or if it was something different.

Last edited by Steve Mullholand; December 14th, 2008 at 09:50 PM.
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Old December 15th, 2008, 07:56 AM   #8
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No. Premier doesn't need any special pre-processing before it can handle video. You should be "jake" by simply importing the footage into Premier.
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Old December 15th, 2008, 03:46 PM   #9
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Steve, I notice you're a neighbor....I recently built a PC from parts I bought at the Dadeland CompUSA for about $2500 that includes an Intel X48 motherboard, 4 gigs of ddr3 ram, an Intel 9550 chip, 4 drives, case, fans, and a 24" Samsung monitor...ete etc. Runs avchd on Premiere Pro CS4 very nicely.

By means of which I'm thinking you don't have to spend as much as you budget to get exactly what you want if you diy....it's like playing with Lego blocks, stuff just plugs in and away you go. The ONLY problem I have had is the mistake of buying Vista, but that's another story. Took all of one Saturday to buy and assemble, but I got what I want for a good price....just a thought..../ Battle Vaughan/ miamiherald.com video team
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Old December 15th, 2008, 04:49 PM   #10
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^ I used to be a PC technician at Microage years ago.... would be kind of fun to put something together like that again.
Do I need to go to 64 bit XP or Vista?
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Old December 15th, 2008, 07:41 PM   #11
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i7 is the way to go

I strongly recommend you the intel i7 nehalem processor (the 920 can easily be overclocked up to 3.8 GHz with a decent cooling system). Most of the motherboards LGA 1366 can handle 12 GB RAM DDR3 or more (of course, you will need Vista 64-bit for that, 32 bit systems cannot recognize more than 3/4 GB RAM). The more RAM, the better for video editing particularly if you edit in HD. You will have to set up a Raid 0 configuration (with 2 disks) for the OS and applications. I recommend you 2 x WD Velociraptor 150 GB HLFS (10000 RPM) for the Raid 0. WD Black Caviar 1 TB for storage will also be great (7200 RPM).

Don't buy Dell, HP or any other crappy brand. You will be better off if you build your own system. It is not difficult. You can upgrade easily. If something doesn't work, you can return the item, not the PC, etc... It will be better in quality and in price!

Here is my HD editing rig. I paid $4200 for everything including the 2 monitors.

- Lian Li A70B case (retail)
- Asus P6T deluxe motherboard (retail)
- Intel Core i7 920 (retail)
- 12 GB OCZ 1333 DDR3 Platinum series (retail)
- 2 x WD Velociraptor 150 GB stripped in Raid 0 (OEM)
- 2 x WD Black Caviar 1 TB (OEM)
- Sony Blu-ray Burner BWU300S (retail)
- Samsung S223Q CD/CDRW/DVDR/DVDRW (OEM)
- Coolermaster V8 CPU cooling fan (retail)
- GPU Asus HD4870 1GB DDR5 (retail)
- Thermaltake Toughpower 850W (retail)
- UPS Cyberpower 850 510 watts (retail)
- 2 x Dell Ultrasharp 2408WFP (Dell Small Business)
- Windows Vista 64-bit Home Premium (retail)
- Office 2007 Home and Student (retail)

Check newegg, tigerdirect or micro center (they have stores also)
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Old December 15th, 2008, 08:00 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Mullholand View Post
Do I need to go to 64 bit XP or Vista?
For me that's nearly a toss-up now. I'm on Vista and it works fine. Just turn off all the extra crap that come with it. (Widgets, etc.)

At this point of time Vista makes sense looking forward. How long will MSFT continue to support XP?
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Old December 15th, 2008, 08:13 PM   #13
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Almost 10 year after the initial introduction Win2K is still quite well supported and there are big company servers still running 2KServer. Just a thought...
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Old December 16th, 2008, 02:19 PM   #14
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PC that I went with is below. Now I have to start nailing down the software. I assume Premier Pro.... but of course I don't want to assume....!



Case
(1) LXe-W Black - Velocity Micro Signature Aluminum Case - removable front door, side window
Power Supply (1) 850 Watt Velocity Micro® Power Supply - Nvidia® SLI™ Certified
Case Lights (1) Double Blue Cold Cathode Chassis Light Kit
Motherboard (1) Genuine Intel® DX58SO Motherboard with DDR3, PCI Express, X58 chipset
Processor (1) Intel® Core™ i7 processor i7-920, quad 2.66GHz cores, 8MB Cache, 4.8 GT/sec
CPU Cooling (1) Intel® Certified Heatsink/Fan, Thermal Controlled Variable Speed Fan
DDR3 Memory (1) 6GB DDR3-1333 Triple Channel Memory with Heat Spreader (3x2048)
PCX Video (1) 1GB NVIDIA® GeForce™ GTX 280 (LXe or GX2 Case required)
Video Tuning (1) Advanced 3D Video Performance Tuning, Optimization, and Overclocking
Audio (1) Creative Labs SoundBlaster® X-Fi™ XtremeGamer
Hard Drive 1 (1) 2 x 1TB Hitachi 7200rpm 32MB Cache SATA 300 w/NCQ - RAID 0 Stripe (2TB Total)
Hard Drive 2 (1) 1TB Hitachi 7200rpm 32MB Cache SATA 300 w/NCQ
(1) Genuine Microsoft® Windows® Vista Home Premium 64-bit, with Service Pack 1 installed
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Old December 16th, 2008, 05:57 PM   #15
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Congratulations, looks like you put together a killer system. I stayed away from Vista64 because it is very picky about drivers (only digital signed drivers accepted) and there are lots of devices (my MOTU firewire audio mixer, for example) with no 64 bit drivers at all. And legacy devices, forgeddaboutit. I have Adobe Production Suite CS4 and Vista 32 is working as well as Vista ever works with that, if that's any help.
(Oddly, after a flurry of automatic uploads from MS this week, the crashing and burning on takeoff seems to have gone away...hmmmm...) The week I bought Vista MS decided to continue XP support until Vista's replacement comes out....indicating to me they have thrown up their hands...our IT people laughed in my face when I told them I had Vista...my son does high-end multimedia for a company that removed vista from all their computers due to the unreliability....and on and on. Your i7 system should kick butt! / Batttle Vaughan /miamiherald.com video team
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