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Old July 22nd, 2007, 04:03 AM   #1
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Decisions -- new computer for editing

Im hoping to enlist a little help from you guys. I am about to buy a new computer to edit footage from my A1. I have both PP@ and AVID MC and am planning to use both. From what I understand of computers, it seems the best bet is to put the money into CPU because you can always upgrade ram, HDD, etc. later. I have a $6000 budget, and am pretty sure I want a mac pro. It seems Avid is particularly finicky, but is almost always compatible with mac. I really dont like avid that much, but my job will require me to use it.

So, Im planning on getting this:
2X Quad-core 3.0GHz
1X250g sata
2X500g sata (raid 0)
standard video card (geforce 7300?)
4g of RAM
and everything else standard
already have two 22" displays(Samsung)

I think if I can avoid tax, Ill have about $500 left over for which I planned to use for Aspect HD.

My question is: is this what you would get? Or would you step down the CPU and Drives and go for external raid (maybe G-Raid 2) and a mojo or matrox card? My real goal here is as little time waiting as possible. I realize HDV will always be slow, but Im trying to maximize creative flow. Also, I will be using this mainly for editing a sitcom with multicam, effects, some 3D, etc. Really want as real-time as possible. Thanks!!!
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Old July 22nd, 2007, 04:27 AM   #2
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Compared to the rest of your wish list a Geforce 7300 seems rather low. Get one with a lot of RAM, for video applications that is often more important than speed.
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Old July 22nd, 2007, 04:55 AM   #3
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PC / Mac Pro

Since your mind is already for part on the Mac Pro track, Mac Pro+FCP+HDV works fluent, and it is a very clean, performant solution.

This being said, I almost got mugged in this forum by some criticism on PC's and particulary PP.

Nothing regarding this type of applications is perfect, but PC+PP+HDV gave me a lot of headaches. And it's not that I'm debutant. Even in the most clean setup under Windows you'll want a few other things to make you PC a swiss knife, core of the universe, and thus get a lot of resource hungry services you'd like to kill but you can't + virus scan and firewall stuff that feel like a heavy backpack while you need to climb a mountain.

Also in high end CAD, laserscan and CAE-apps I daily encounter problems with this, it's not different with NLE's: not that it doesn't work, but there are a lot of up's, but surely down's. Working with Aspect doesn't look at least to me (I'm careful) not the most fluent workflow at all. Now I'm sure there will be 100 replies or so to tell you that there's no problem at all.

With a 6000USD budget I wouldn't go overnight.

What I personaly did was to let experienced people & resellers of NLE software demostrate what they could do with their hard- and software: very interesting. One advise: be sure of the 'total cost of ownership', of what they show and tell, including the upgrade cost, the projected end of life of their add-on cards, etc. the most important factor to make your judgement.
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Old July 22nd, 2007, 05:37 AM   #4
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Thanks for the responses!
Well, as far as the video card goes, I guess I could go to the ati 1900. THe only other option seems to be the Quadro fx 4500, which I love, but cant justify an extra $1600 on the video card. Seems the cpu, ram, raid drives are more important, but im no expert. I wll consider upgrading the vid card. Any options I didnt mention?
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Old July 22nd, 2007, 06:19 AM   #5
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Please take into consideration, that of all current NLE's it's only Vegas 7.0 that can utilize all 4 cores of the Core 2 Quadro CPU (it runs at almost 100% most of the time when rendering).
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Old July 22nd, 2007, 06:24 AM   #6
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Is that so? So an 8 core mac is overkill untill the NLE's upgrade? Im sure its impossible to say for sure, but any idea on when FCP of AVID may be up to par?

As a matter of fact, Vegas is about all Im using right now for my personal stuff! So simple and efficient. Will it be able to utilize for cores on a mac using bootcamp and windows vista?
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Old July 22nd, 2007, 06:28 AM   #7
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This I really don't know, sorry. The advise is valid in the PC world:)
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Old July 22nd, 2007, 10:26 AM   #8
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Old July 22nd, 2007, 10:34 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert Brandon View Post
I think if I can avoid tax, Ill have about $500 left over for which I planned to use for Aspect HD.
Whether you intend to pay the tax is of course up to you, however California (like most other states) expects you to pay tax on mail order purchases from out of state. See: http://www.ftb.ca.gov/current/usetax.html

Quote:
In general, you must pay California use tax if you purchase an item out-of-state (for example, by telephone, over the Internet, by mail, or in person) and

The seller does not collect California sales or use tax, and
You use, give away, store, or consume the item in this state.
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Old July 22nd, 2007, 04:43 PM   #10
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I understand your probably leaning towards another NLE, but Premiere CS3 does take advantage of all four cores if you purchase a quad. For the 6600 I have, it hasn't gone up to 100% yet at all during a render, more like 85 at the very most, which may or may not be good for exporting speed. But Premiere and I think After Effects also do use all four cores evenly. With After Effects you have to enable the multiple core function though. Encore on the othe hand from what I have observed does not and really only uses one core while the others are sort of idled. .See attached pic of scrn grab..

Damon
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Old July 23rd, 2007, 05:43 AM   #11
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Damon,
Do you use cineform? Would it still be necessary to achieve realtime effects monitoring with a quad mac and raid setup? just wondering if its the wise purchase. Maybe matrox card instead? or both?
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Old July 23rd, 2007, 06:00 AM   #12
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Best Buy has a quad-core HP with 3GB of RAM for around $1,100 at last check. Not a bad deal for a retail store. I need something new before I can upgrade to CS3, and this might be the ticket.
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Old July 23rd, 2007, 07:52 AM   #13
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Hi Robert:

I don't use the Cineform, though alot of people here do use it and like it. I use the Matrox RTX2, and for most things with HDV and the quad, it is realtime. The renders and exports are definately faster without a doubt, and you really don't have to render much, even with HDV if your doing mostly color corrections, cuts editing, and the like.

With HDV and the quad, with the X2, I have found that if I go over 3 layers of HDV(straight clips) with say opacity and effects, that I have to render. Even with that, the renders are extremely fast. I just purchased the quad on the 9th of July and have only had to render a test I was playing around with with, with four layers of video, each with opacity or say a blur. But the way the card works, the more powerful your gpu(I am running a lowly Nvidia 7600GS 512MB), the more you can do without rendering. Even when playing back the four layer, I could do so, but it went to less than realtime playback. When working with 1-2 layers of video(HDV), like I stated above, unless I add something like a shine, blur, etc, I haven't had to render. Also the exports to I frame are like 1/2 realtime and export to Mpeg for downconverts to SD are about 1.5X realtime on a two pass 9MBS via either the AME or MME. It helps quite a bit.

For DV, before I went quad, I was able to stack if I remember correctly with my tests, 5 layers of video with effects(same ones causing render req) without requiring a render. Things like motion, dissolves, and the simple stuff are realtime very much for the most part. It is well worth the investment if you have the cash and approved config for your system, not to mention do that much work..


D
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Old July 23rd, 2007, 03:08 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Piotr Wozniacki View Post
Please take into consideration, that of all current NLE's it's only Vegas 7.0 that can utilize all 4 cores of the Core 2 Quadro CPU (it runs at almost 100% most of the time when rendering).
I can ensure you that rendering on FCP with Compressor (and also from FCP directly) is making use of quad (and I assume surely also the eight) core.

Nicely balanced. Like everything in a Mac. I know, guys, the eternal discussion.
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