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Non-Linear Editing on the PC
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Old June 1st, 2002, 03:41 PM   #1
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Vancouver, British Columbia
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looking for a nle solution

I've gone through many of the previous posts already, but couldn't find a specific answer to my problem. Here it goes.

I have to buy a new PC for personal use as well as doing all the DV editing for my project.

I'm looking at spending about $1100us on a P4 1.8ghz with 512 mb of ram, a 40 and 80gb HDs, Matrox G550 video card, and all the misc bits and pieces (not including monitor).

My first idea was to buy a Matrox RT2500 card and use Premiere, which will cost an extra $800us.

Then, a friend of mine offered me his companies copy of Avid Xpress DV 3 (they are stepping up) in trade for my labor, which would mean I would only have to buy a basic capture card for $100, so I could spend the extra $$ on a faster system.

Then I was offered a copy of Premier 6 FREE, which means I could just take all the money (minus basic capture card) and dump it right into the system, so although I wouldn't have real time effects, it would still be quite fast.

The big question is Premiere vs. Xpress DV. I don't know ANYTHING about NLEs, but I'm a very fast learner. My original goal is to output back to miniDV, and I don't plan on using swirly super 3D effects, just straightforward storytelling, filters, color correction, and slow motion effects.
I'm not stuck on either of these programs, they are just accessible to me, and it seems like there is a lot of support out there for Premiere. If there is something worth paying for instead of either of these, I'd buy it. I see Vegas Video is popular with some of you.

I also understand that Xpress won't run on Win XP? This would eliminate it from consideration, for me, which is too bad because I'd like it's real time power.

I guess my final consideration, is should I buy a real time card (Pro-One, RT2500, or DV Storm) or should I just sink that money into a faster computer?

It also seems like there are a lot of problems with these cards, and that's something I'm not qualified to deal with. I'm very comfortable with computers, but I'm not going messing around with IRQs and such.
I plan on having someone build it for me, not do it myself. Over my head.

So that's about it. I'd appreciate your opinions on this.

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Old June 2nd, 2002, 01:21 AM   #2
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Spend the extra bucks to get a decent system. I recently upgraded from DV500 to Dvstorm se Plus. Go this way please you would regret this. Reasons...
Bundled software, Premiere, Acid and bunch of others. Its like everything you need in a nice bundle.
If you think that going realtime is not a need thats not true. You will work faster with it. Less stress and accurate.
Plus this card works with athlons here is where you save money. Coz it's cheaper than Pentiums.
If you need my setup please say so it works like a charm.
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Old June 2nd, 2002, 08:09 AM   #3
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I'd go for the AVID over Permiere, as once you start editing you'll get hooked and want the extra power and features. Personally I wouldn't be going for XP yet as it still needs a little sorting out, maybe in 6 months or so. I use Win2000 on my PC system and it's basically bulletproof now.

The previous suggestion of AMD's over Pentiums is good advice. This could get me flamed but who cares, the current AMD's are better than P4's for video work and cheaper.

So the bottom line, 1.8Ghz AMD, Max RAM, OHCI 1394 card, 2 of what ever you can afford HDD's and AVID. You'll have to research all the component compatibilities or better yet get someone who specialises in NLE systems to build it for you.
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Old June 3rd, 2002, 07:21 AM   #4
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windows xp

When you buy a new computer, it comes with the latest version of windows, which is now XP. But you say AVID DV works better with win2000. Isn't it risky to take off XP and replace it with 2000. I seem to run into buggy little problems when I try to overhaul software. Are there other solutions? Thanks.
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Old June 3rd, 2002, 07:59 AM   #5
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Your new machine would most likely thank you for installing Win2k.
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Old June 3rd, 2002, 11:43 AM   #6
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mantral98, I'd really like to check out your setup, although the DV Storm might be out of my budget. If you could e-mail it to me, that would be great.

Adrian, I thought XP was more stable than Win2000? Of course, no Avid for XP is no good. I could go that route and upgrade to XP when Avid comes out with a patch. Usualy once I have a system running perfectly, I avoid changing or upgrading anything as it usualy means problems that I can't fix.

So we've got a vote for a Premiere based system, a vote for Avid... :)

I guess one of the most important things is, which is easier to learn, or more intuitive, I should say, Premiere or Avid? I guess there is no arguing that Avid is more powerful, doing software real time.

I'll have to look for local builders with nle experience, rather than just a regular builder. I thought about mail ordering a turnkey system, but I'd rather buy localy.
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Old June 3rd, 2002, 03:18 PM   #7
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my system with dvstorm se plus

I currently have the dv500 and the dvstorm. Lately I have been using the storm frequently.
Here is the configuration
dual athlon MP 1900+
tyan MB S2460
3gig ddr memory
canopus explode video card
canopus dvstorm se plus
80 gig main drive two partitions 1st for system 2nd for storage
Escalade raid card with 4 60 gig ata 100 ide drives for video
of course the usual CD-rom 50X, floppy, Creative live sound card

Although according to some members here you donot really need the sound card because the dvstorm has sound capabilities which is true I only noticed it when I was hooking up the front panel composite outputs to the vcr.
Also the operation system is Win2000 with service pak 2.
Get a case with a 400 watt power and preferably 5-6 bays. Lots of bays means places you can put you hard drives coz they generate a lot of heat. With this regard...cooling fans put two other than the cpu fan to blast in the cool air. Anyway its common sense see it for yourself touch the case or the hard drives if you need more fans. Its hot here in L.A. especially summer.
Its easy to build this one.. did it myself. But of course I do not know the extend of your knowledge on hardware or if you are up to tinkering with this stuff. If not ...if turning a screw driver scares the s... out of you then buy a turnkey or solicit the help of your local computer shops.
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Old June 3rd, 2002, 08:46 PM   #8
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1. Go with Mantral98's advice!

Get the DVstorm. I bought the DV500, and have used it a while now. It outputs to s-video or firewire. It goes to S-video with realtime fades and realtime brightness-contrast-saturation correction. But I really feel that it lacks color correction and levels etc. (in realtime).

The DVstorm however, can do all sorts of image corrections, with filters on filters an output it to realtime S-video or Firewire!

Don't forget that half your footage look's is achieved in the color correction phase of post production. Color correction can save a bad shoot. I thought that rendering out clips and correct them was a cheap way, but it doesn't work in the end. You don't have that second-precise way of correcting your video to a tv monitor, with a card that needs to render everything. To me it feels like I don't have control over my picture at all, having to wait 5 minutes on some rendering every time I do a small change.

Buy a DVstorm, or another card capable of the same things!

2. Don't use Windows XP. It's crap. At lest for the moment. For video editing, Windows 2000 is the only choice. With the Service pack 2 installed ofcourse.

3. Avid is an old program updated and updated. Many people respect Avid, just because it's used by "proffessionals". It has good features for Film work. Such as organizing and clip titling. However, I hardly think you could find more editing features in Avid than in Premiere. In fact, It's the other way around. Premiere has more features than Avid.

Personally I think that Avid is slow to work with, boring to work with, and uncreative to work with. There are things with the Avid that really irritates me. Such as small "logical" changes, that makes Avid different than the other programs. Final cut pro and Premiere etc. all share the same logical thinking. Also things in Avid, like having to import footage and wait for it to load, irritates me. When I use Premiere, I just drag and drop.

Ofcourse there is one thing that Avid is good at; Safety! It's safe, and it does not crash. That's a thing that has given Premiere a bad rumor. But that was back in Premiere 5.1. And I also agree with that v.5.1 was crap. But we're on a whole new version now. A version that responds quicker, and is much more stable. Premiere 6.0 hasn't crashed for me anytime that I can remember. Still if it would be a little unstable, I'd use it, and hit the "save" button more often.

If you think you'll lose realtime capabilities on the Premiere 6.0 over the Avid... - then you're wrong. Premiere, with DVstorm, does a lot more realtime than Avid. Programs that go "realtime" need a hardware acceleration (a video editing card) to do it. If you wan't a card to go "realtime" with Avid, then you won't afford it in a near future. With the Premiere however you do -DVstorm!

Think it all over. But remember; people talk a lot about which program that is best and what sytem (PC or MAC) that is best. I always hear people asking me how I can use a PC and Premiere. Generally those who ask me are MAC Final cut pro users. And they haven't even used the Premiere 6.0. But the answer is simple. PC-Premiere is capable of the same thing. So basicly, what people are doing, is to judge a program that they haven't even used. Must be some strategic move from a competitor(propaganda).

The most importent point in this "Program competition", is that whatever the system you use is.... -The final output looks exactly the same. Some people actually thought that PC and Premiere produces lower quality, and wanted me to show them a final output. That proves that they don't know what they are talking about.

So my bottom point is;

"A program does not edit a film... An editor does".


"A good editor edits in whatever program that makes the final output best".

You decide....

Excuse me all Avid users. I Don't wan't to talk bad about your aplication. It's my personal opinion. But ofcourse both I and you understand that we are all editing where we do it best.

I'll quit now. Too tired. It's very late here in Sweden.



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Old June 3rd, 2002, 11:32 PM   #9
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Location: Vancouver, British Columbia
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Hey, wait, this isn't right, you guys are all supposed to AGREE!!! :) heh heh, just kidding. I know better.

Well, if I was going to get a RT board for Premiere, and I had the extra money, I'd DEFINITELY get the DV Storm no question. However, I might not have enough money, but I can get a next to free copy of Xpress DV 3.

So would XDV definitely be a better choice than Premiere 6 with no RT board support? And I save $1200.

As you can see, I'm trying to narrow down my options before I make the final decision.

At least everyone agrees XP is crap! What's the service pack 2 for W2K?
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Old June 4th, 2002, 07:31 PM   #10
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Service pack 2, is an upgrade for Windows 2000. It adds new stuff to the system and fixes bugs. You can, If im right, download SP-2 from Microsoft.com free (I hope).

Regarding the NLE.... If you really want Avid, then go for it. As I mentioned before.... All thoose programs are good one's capable of basicly the same thing. I personally prefer using programs which have more of the "Premiere like" interface, like many newer programs use (not invented by Premiere in any way that I know of). For me, that type of interface feels more modern and fast. And especially if you are new to NLE's, I would recomend you to use a program with more of the "Premiere like" interface. If the money is bothering you, you could always buy a copy of Premiere 6.0 without a RT card. I'm not shure of the following, but I can't imagine that the Avid handles RT better than Premiere without them both using an RT card.

Trust your instinct.... Everybody are always so sure of what's the right thing. Me too. Many will probably oppose to my opinion, as I do to some of theirs. It's very subjective.

Hope you find the right one for you. Good luck.


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Old June 14th, 2002, 05:35 AM   #11
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Avid DV Xpress 3 or Final Cut Pro are the two budget solutions worth considering. Avid is used to cut a lot of Feature Films and TV and FCP has also been used to cut feature films. Basicaly if its good enough for feature film editors it has to work VERY well.

If you do go the avid route check there website for DV and Video card compatibility (avid is very fussy).

Also a dual head card and a 2 monitors are a real joy to work with if you can stretch to that (I use two 21" monitors).

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Old June 14th, 2002, 11:23 AM   #12
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Location: Vancouver, British Columbia
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Thanks for everyones feedback here.

I still haven't decided on which way to go so what I'm going to do is just buy the computer and see if I can try both Premiere and Avid XDV3 to find which I like more. If it's Premiere, then I will buy the Canopus DV Storm, if it's Avid, I will buy the software.

Can I install both programs to the same system without conflicts?

Oh, and to be fair to Premiere, I know Avid will do everything real time already, but I will be looking mostly at the interface and intuitiveness of the programs.
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Old June 18th, 2002, 05:29 PM   #13
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Seems that you folks are a bit too quick on the draw to shoot down XP as an NLE platform. Yes Win2K has been out longer....if you were to conduct a comparable study on quirks in Win2k vs. XP Pro and the amount of time each has been released you would find XP is way ahead of the curve. Of course those of you that are using other NLE's.....DV Storm etc.. have your preference so I will add in with my 2c here. I have an older HP Pavillion that I upgraded to XP Pro. I now have a Pinnacle.. Pro-One installed with Premiere.....and it rocks. Of course Pinnacle did not get the drivers out for Pro-One until early in the year...January I belive, and they are currently Beta Testing Version 2.0 Drivers.

I will tell ya you can't beat what you get for the cost of the Pro-One now at about 800 clams. You get Premiere, Hollywood FX-RT, TitleDecko RT and Impression SE (for making DVD's). There is no other NLE in this price range with this much ....going for it. I would not over look this power house combination. As with any NLE system though...be it Canopus, Pinnacle or whatever Capture card you use......you would be wise to learn a little about your computer configuration. The major thing I like about XP that has saved my butt on numerouse occasions that Win2K does not have.....is the ability to restore to an ealrlier version of my SW.

Every time I install a new application (prior) I perform a snapshot of my current configuration. Then if my NLE starts to act up.....all I have to do is restore to my earlier configuration....no uninstalling...no Registry hassle etc. Remmember it is a new system and you have a new learning curve....with technology changing as fast as MicroChips....you can either stay ahead of the curve...and stay current or you can eat the dust....from others that will pass you by. Don't take this the wrong way just simply trying state a known equation.
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Old June 18th, 2002, 05:40 PM   #14
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Not that my posts have any real pull, but I use the RT2500 on a Windows XP box. I love it and wouldn't trade it for the world. Now I use a lot of the effects, and take plenty advantage of all the real-time capabilities.

The breakout box has been a real life saver at times it allows me to capture video via analog, SVHS, and firewire.

In the end it comes down to your personal preference. If you know Avid then get the Avid software. If you are new to editing then go with Avid. If you are like me and learned on Premiere you might want to stick with that. It's coming along I will admit it has it's flaws but so does everything else.

Big James
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