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Non-Linear Editing on the PC
Discussing the editing of all formats with Matrox, Pinnacle and more.


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Old November 1st, 2004, 03:55 PM   #1
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NEW video card... ups and downs? Or just UPS?

Hey I've seen the comments about video cards in another thread pretty close to this one. I was tempted to build on that thread but it looks like the guy who started the thread is getting "shut down" on his idea of getting a good card.

I started this thread to push this idea in a different direction.

Would it HURT anything (video-wise) to use a high-end card? I've been happily using a Matrox g450 for a couple years now and it actually does a great job... plus you can get one for about $15 on ebay! Mine was $90 a couple years ago. It does dual-monitors with a fairly speedy 2D gpu... yeah, 2D... not 3D. Anyway, back in the old days (2.5 years ago) it was HIGHLY recommended to NOT get a fast video card! ALL the turnkey video computers way back then (lol) used cards like the one I have or MAYBE they stepped up to a g550. It was said that you WANTED a slower card with 32-64mb onboard so you wouldn't cause problems in the machine... such as interaction with the capture card...

Have those times passed? Do the modern video cards cause the codec and performance issues that they did a couple years ago?

My previous video computer utilized a Radeon card that was pretty sweet at the time... Well after my computer had a major blue-screen crash... in the middle of my 80th HOUR of editing a particular project... I dumped EVERYTHING that composed that freakin' thing. I started over and built a machine to "turnkey" specs. My turnkey machine has been GREAT until the recent Asus mutiny (story in another thread)... so would I be shooting myself in the foot to get a high(er) end card?

I've got a gig of ram and I considered doubling that... but I'm torn between the ram and the card... and I can't do both right now.

Why, you ask? There are days that I wouldn't mind playing a few games on my PC.

That brings another question. Do any of you guys have games on the same machine you edit on? That used to be a BIG NO-NO... and I kept my machine totally CLEAN for editing. I used to have removable hard drives and I could just swap out machine personalities and desktops all with a pull of the drive... That should guarantee zero problems anyway... but do some of you guys have games sharing hard disk real estate?

About the card? I'm thinking one of the lower performing 6800's... They are about HALF the price of the ultra's but they still smoke the rest of the nvidia line.

Matrox cards have a dual-vga output, but after completing the upgrade of my girlfriend's SFF I noticed that the cards with one vga and one dvi can still do dual-vga with the provided adapter.

Does anybody see any problems with all this?

Stick with my Matrox and double ram or pop in the (semi)bad-boy?
Matt Gettemeier is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 1st, 2004, 08:10 PM   #2
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1- Video games can really waste your time. If that's bad for you, then stick with the Matrox. You simply can't play em if you have that card, and that will keep you away from 3d games at least.

An exception would be Max Payne 2. That's my favorite computer game... it has a great cinematic / film noir feel which you may be interested in since it's film/video related.

So in conclusion I guess my point is video games are evil unless it's Max Payne.

Quote:
Would it HURT anything (video-wise) to use a high-end card?
No one on forums like these report any problems. You might have to upgrade your power supply and UPS as the latest generation Nvidia cards draw about double the power of old ones (???120W at full load???).

A higher end video card may also help with compositing, as many compositing apps take advantage of openGL and directx acceleration. The workstation cards (fire, quaddro series) are better at openGL and worse at gaming than the consumer/gaming cards (it wouldn't make sense for you to get one as it seems like gaming would be more important).
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Old November 2nd, 2004, 07:07 AM   #3
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Okay in some of my other threads the topic of mpeg encoding and processor power has come up. We've been talking about an 11% boost in processing times (with a Prescott over a Northwood).

I've been reading that some of the newer, high-performance video cards can do mpeg in virtually real time. Does that mean that Vegas will use that card to fire my DVDs right off the time line?

Does anybody know about that? Glenn? You've been really cool with steady input on this stuff... I'm hoping you can help me crack this nut also.
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Old November 3rd, 2004, 01:24 PM   #4
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I've been reading that some of the newer, high-performance video cards can do mpeg in virtually real time. Does that mean that Vegas will use that card to fire my DVDs right off the time line?
I believe a lot of video cards nowadays offer acceleration for MPEG2 decoding. So if you want to watch a DVD on your computer, the video card can decode the MPEG2 stream instead of letting the processor/CPU do it.

I don't think they help with MPEG2 encoding. MPEG2 encoders are software-based and for your video to help out, they have to have the instruction sets that the MPEG2 encoder uses (i.e. the main concept encoder does use SSE2 instructions). I don't think video cards can do those instructions.

Maybe you can give some links?

2- The Matrox hardware acceleration card(s) for Premiere Pro do help with MPEG2 encoding.

3- I remember reading somewhere about the possibility of using a 3d video card's GPU for rendering video effects. That would be very neat as you'd have your graphic card's processing unit and your computer's CPU both rendering footage. I believe theoretically this is possible, but I don't know enough about the hardware and software to say so. I don't think there are any software/hardware combinations available now that do that.
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Old November 3rd, 2004, 07:22 PM   #5
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>I believe a lot of video cards nowadays offer acceleration for >MPEG2 decoding. So if you want to watch a DVD on your >computer, the video card can decode the MPEG2 stream instead >of letting the processor/CPU do it.

I can comment on nVidia. Anything after GeForce2 offers some acceleration. GeForce4 and greater offers great MPEG2 decode and deinterlacing, if your software uses it.

>I don't think they help with MPEG2 encoding. MPEG2 encoders >are software-based and for your video to help out, they have to >have the instruction sets that the MPEG2 encoder uses

The latest nVidia GeForce6 offers real-time MPEG encode (a dedicated hardware block), although you are really better off with multi-pass and higher quality. The latest
cards offer MPEG2 encode to help support the new Personal Video Recorder (PVR) software. I don't think major video editing software will interface to the hardware accelerator.
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