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High Definition Video Editing Solutions
For all HD formats including HDV, HDCAM, DVCPRO HD and others.


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Old July 31st, 2007, 10:13 AM   #31
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Don't want to hijack the thread but my experience with FCP and this laptop have not been good- mediocre screen, poor performance and a very hefty pricetag...
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Old July 31st, 2007, 01:35 PM   #32
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Are you editing HDV or DVCPROHD?
HDV is acceptable for HD news, or anything that doesn't need any rendering, effects, transitions. HDV is a long GOP codec, it stores only 1 frame of 15, render time is huge for any little change you do, it's a nightmare.
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Old July 31st, 2007, 09:20 PM   #33
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Greg, your experience is rare. I have edited a mountain of things on FCP on my Macbook Pro and it has been ROCK SOLID. I have even been doing 8 stream DVCproHD multiclips on a recent project, all color corrected and have no issues at all. You must have a hardware problem. I have the glossy screen and it is very good, I generally use a 24" 1920X1080 monitor for my second monitor, all driven by the MBP. This is a GREAT set-up for multicam editing.



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Old July 31st, 2007, 09:24 PM   #34
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Great for you... bad for me. Wanna buy another Mac? :)
No disrespect meant, but I've given Mac the old college try and it just doesn't live up to it's rep. In fact, I'd be disappointed if I'd paid half the price.
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Old August 1st, 2007, 12:49 AM   #35
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Originally Posted by Giovanni Speranza View Post
HDV is acceptable for HD news, or anything that doesn't need any rendering, effects, transitions. HDV is a long GOP codec, it stores only 1 frame of 15, render time is huge for any little change you do, it's a nightmare.
With the right hardware and software HDV editing isn't too bad, and if you convert it to an intermediate editing codec it's quite manageable. Some complex effects will definitely take longer to render because of the greater amount of data involved, but it's not necessarily a "nightmare".
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Old August 1st, 2007, 02:21 AM   #36
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Originally Posted by Greg Rothschild View Post
The truth of the matter is I've already got FCP-- on a Macbook Pro, which I was led to believe (by the salespeople in the Mac store, as well as others) that it would be great for hd editing.
Good for cuts-only editing would have been the more accurate description. Please don't be upset at me for suggesting you should have done some tests before buying. I always test common tasks out on a Mac at the Apple store before upgrading...to see if I can get done what I need to get done on the hardware I'm considering.

Remember, even the best PC laptops have limitations similar to the Apple products...it's not like the latest killer Core 2 Duo Dell is going to render native HDV any faster.

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If I shoot sd it works pretty well, at least for an hour or so, then I have to shut it down, delete the plist, cache, etc., reboot and work for another half hour to an hour and then reboot. Add any effects and render times go thru the roof.
If you can only get an hour of work done at a time before you have to go digging or rebooting, then something is wrong, period. I've had FCP systems go almost 2 years before needing re-installing, or needing OSX to be reinstalled, and at one time, I was maintaining about 4 systems.

FCP has quite a few shortcomings, but stability is not one of them. I'd urge you to find somebody to straighten out your rig to save you some money.
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Old August 1st, 2007, 09:50 AM   #37
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Perhaps there actually is a hardware problem- I'll bring it back to Apple before I sell it. I'm extremely frustrated with this computer though- it was delivered months late, the screen is mediocre, I'm lucky to get 75 minutes out of the battery, the hardware doesn't work as promised and the price was very high. I'm just a beginner and this has nearly turned me off from editing altogether but I'm going to give it a go on a pc, one that will be easy to get fixed if it does have issues, plus it'll cost about a thousand dollars less than the Mac.
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Old August 1st, 2007, 10:18 PM   #38
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Sounds like there may be a hardware issue, combined with some inexperience. Make sure you are working efficiently, cleanly and smart. Make sure your clips are small, not entire tapes. Make sure you do an A roll edit before you begin to add effects, color correct, etc.

I highly doubt this is really a Mac issue. For the record I own 3 Macs and 3 PCs and have an editing system and laptop of each (also have an iMac in the kitchen and a media server PC) so I am not a "Mac" guy at all.



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Old August 1st, 2007, 10:46 PM   #39
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I'm sure inexperience plays a roll too but I've gone thru all the settings a million times- capture settings, real time settings, pretty much everything I could think of, plus I asked a teacher at Video Symphony to go over the settings (I took an FCP class there last year). In response to your comments Ash- very small clips, rarely more than a minute, and when I say effects I mean... crossfades- nothing fancier than that. I did use some Boris 3d text once... man that was a lesson in frustration.
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Old August 2nd, 2007, 01:42 AM   #40
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Greg, what are the specs on your Mac Book Pro? is it a core 2 duo? 2.2Ghz? 2.4? and how much Ram do you have?
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Old August 2nd, 2007, 02:01 AM   #41
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At the very least, remember this Greg:

I don't think many people ever have claimed that a PC edit rig is easier to maintain/troubleshoot than a Mac rig. Or in other words...if you jump ship, you'll likely have to straighten out some kinks there as well.

Which brings me to something I learned earlier this year while trying to help a friend transition from Media 100 to FCP...most of his problems were of the learning a new program variety. Old ways of working and assumptions were what was giving him grief.

For instance, in Media 100 when you import media that the system doesn't support, it will transcode it to something that it does, making it a very long import process at times. He couldn't fathom why FCP wouldn't do that for you...that putting unsupported media on the timeline would make you render.

Anyway, I find that new users often have problems of the same variety. Incorrect assumptions about how FCP works often cause weirdness and unhappiness (I think this goes for any NLE, btw).
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Old August 2nd, 2007, 08:43 AM   #42
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I appreciate your thoughts about this. I hear you Nate- and I'm sure my inexperience is adding to the frustration level... but I gave it a lot of effort. I'm to the point where I'm convinced getting a laptop was a mistake so I'm getting a desktop specifically to edit with (no internet, no other programs, just edit). I feel that I was misled by Apple people (not just the Apple salespeople but other Apple users who all said this new laptop would fly!) and so do not want to give Apple any more of my money, hence my going Premiere.
This was (still is I think) the latest greatest MBP- core 2 duo, fastest cpu they offer, 2g ram (was going to upgrade to 4 but when I saw it was nearly $700 I decided against), fw 800 drive on the side and a shiny brand new FCP program... which is now old... 5.14. Actually, I bought 5.12 and got the update a few months ago. The 17" screen is probably one of my biggest complaints, and I've read many others are unhappy with it as well. I do a lot of Photoshop work, but not on the laptop :(
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Old August 2nd, 2007, 10:46 AM   #43
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The other problem (and it's the main problem) is that HDV has the same bandwidth as DV. It's too compressed and finally you don't really shoot in HD, just a pseudo HD, not to mention that it's interlaced (maybe this is a problem of camera design, not the HDV codec itself)
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Old August 2nd, 2007, 11:06 AM   #44
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Originally Posted by Giovanni Speranza View Post
The other problem (and it's the main problem) is that HDV has the same bandwidth as DV. It's too compressed and finally you don't really shoot in HD, just a pseudo HD, not to mention that it's interlaced...
HDV is a fine entry-level HD recording format and is being used for several popular TV shows plus a lot of independent production work. It's at least as much "real HD" as the signals received by broadcast HDTV viewers and what's on HD movie discs: the main limitation of HDV is the quality of the cameras and lenses designed to record it. And there is a progressive-scan version of HDV produced by the JVC series cameras, using full 720p resolution at up to 60 frames per second. So while it's true that HDV is heavily compressed, it's still a very usable compromise and a remarkable accomplishment for the price.

Last edited by Kevin Shaw; August 2nd, 2007 at 11:55 AM.
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Old August 2nd, 2007, 11:14 AM   #45
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The other problem (and it's the main problem) is that HDV has the same bandwidth as DV. It's too compressed and finally you don't really shoot in HD, just a pseudo HD, not to mention that it's interlaced (maybe this is a problem of camera design, not the HDV codec itself)
HDV is a tool - once you learn to use it properly, it yields a spectacular picture! But you have to go through the learning curve and know it's strengths and weaknesses.
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