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Old August 22nd, 2014, 03:10 PM   #1
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Editing on a laptop?

I have been searching the web for as much information as possible regarding video editing on a laptop. What do you guys recommend?

So far, I have the following equipment:
  • Camera: Canon XA25 (Captures AVCHD or MP4) - Shooting in 8bit 1080p at 59.97p or 29.97p on SD Cards.
  • Capture Media: Atomos Samurai Blade for capturing 10 bit 4:2:2 1080p 29.97p in Apple ProRes HQ or Avid DNxHD on HDD or SSD (The Blade includes a docking port for the media that connects via USB 3.0).
  • Editing Software: Adobe Creative Cloud
  • PC Only. Not interested in Apple.

In the late '90's, I build NLE's using Matrox and Pinnacle boards, but I understand that computer processors and internal graphics card processors are fast enough to edit and play back 1080p in real time. And since everything is captured digitally, there is no longer a need for the elaborate capture boards (I won't be capturing any analog video).

From my research, I have found the ASUS ROG G750JZ, and although it's considered a "gaming" laptop, it seems to have everything a man could want for editing.
  • Latest 4th-gen Intel Core i7 processor
  • Latest NVIDIA GeForce GTX880M graphics (Which Adobe recommends on their system requirements for Premiere Pro CC
  • Windows 8.1
  • Up to 32 GB DDR3L MHz SDRAM
  • 17.3" Monitor
  • SSD Storage Options
  • 2 -in-1 card reader ( SD/ MMC)
  • For networking: Integrated 802.11ac for WiFi and 10/100/1000 Base T
  • 4 x USB 3.0 ports
  • 1 x HDMI (if I ever needed it)
  • 1 x Thunderbolt port - This is the cool one because I could daisy chain up to four 10-bit ASUS 27” Monitors. Can you imagine editing with the laptop screen plus 4 more 10-bit monitors? Talk about productivity.

Really, I just wanted to post what I found on here and see if I am going in the right direction. Is there something else better out there that I'm missing?
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Old August 23rd, 2014, 01:18 AM   #2
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Re: Editing on a laptop?

Chet,

If you go to PPBM6 for CS6 and choose 'Login' to create an account / register first and then - after your registration has been approved - go to PPBM6 Results you will see the benchmark results page.

Follow the instructions on the screenshot and you will see an almost identical laptop from Bill Gehrke, which is the fastest laptop for Adobe PR CC 2014. Note that he uses two internal Samsung 840 Pro SSD's, as well as 24 GB memory and the nVidia GTX 765M video card.

BTW. Daisy chaining 10 bit monitors makes no sense with a GTX video card, since GTX only supports 8 bit. For 10 bit you need a Quadro card.
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Editing on a laptop?-ppbm-laptops.png  

Last edited by Harm Millaard; August 23rd, 2014 at 02:14 AM.
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Old August 24th, 2014, 02:22 PM   #3
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Re: Editing on a laptop?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Harm Millaard View Post
Follow the instructions on the screenshot and you will see an almost identical laptop from Bill Gehrke, which is the fastest laptop for Adobe PR CC 2014. Note that he uses two internal Samsung 840 Pro SSD's, as well as 24 GB memory and the nVidia GTX 765M video card.

BTW. Daisy chaining 10 bit monitors makes no sense with a GTX video card, since GTX only supports 8 bit. For 10 bit you need a Quadro card.
Thanks for the tips Harm. I have looked on the Nvidia site for laptops that use their Quadro cards. I'd really like to have the capability of daisy chaining 10 bit monitors for viewing a native 10 bit video stream. When looking at the Nvidia web site, I am not sure where to look for 10-bit support.

I just registered on the site you recommend, but I am not awaiting approval. How does the GTX stack up against the Quadro? Does the GTX support 10 bit monitors?

Finally, since the Asus does not support the Quadro card, I have turned my attention to the Dell Precision M6800. http://www.dell.com/us/business/p/pr...00-workstation What do you think of that one?
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Old August 24th, 2014, 05:02 PM   #4
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Re: Editing on a laptop?

Might pass by Sager Notebooks, they build on the Clevo chassis to order, and they're very responsive to questions. I am using CS6 on their 9170 with 32 gb, 2 hard drives and an NVidia 680M card with considerable satisfaction. custom gaming laptops - Welcome to Sager Notebooks

(usual disclaimer, no connection to Sager or Clevo except as satisfied customer)
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Old August 24th, 2014, 06:34 PM   #5
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Re: Editing on a laptop?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chet Kenisell View Post
How does the GTX stack up against the Quadro? Does the GTX support 10 bit monitors?

Finally, since the Asus does not support the Quadro card, I have turned my attention to the Dell Precision M6800. Dell Precision M6800 Workstation Details | Dell What do you think of that one?
For a comparison of GTX versus Quadro cards in desktops, see Tweakers Page - What video card to use?

That Dell laptop is pretty steeply priced. No denying it, it is a nice machine, but I would prefer a Sager / Clevo in that price range, and since mobility is not relevant here, unless you have mobile wall outlets as well, I would prefer looking at a desktop with a case mounted on wheels.

Why are you looking at a laptop at all? With 4 daisy-chained 10 bit monitors, a laptop loses all its benefits and for the same amount of money you can get a huge performance benefit from a stationary workstation.
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Old August 24th, 2014, 06:53 PM   #6
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Re: Editing on a laptop?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Harm Millaard View Post
Why are you looking at a laptop at all? With 4 daisy-chained 10 bit monitors, a laptop loses all its benefits and for the same amount of money you can get a huge performance benefit from a stationary workstation.
Single monitor laptop in the field...Dock and edit on 4 monitors in the office.
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Old August 27th, 2014, 03:54 PM   #7
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Re: Editing on a laptop?

Thanks for all of your help thus far! I have read everything that I can on the PPBM6 for CS6 site about a "Balanced" system and have decided that a GTX card would be more cost effective than a Quadro card. However, I'm assuming that Premiere Pro CC would still be editing the 10-bit 4:2:2 PreRES HQ with no problem even though the video card and monitor only supports 8-bit. Is that correct?

Now, for the storage. Please pardon the large graphic below, but I need some help selecting my storage for editing purposes. I am currently configuring a Sager laptop (per many of your suggestions above).

Here's the thing: I'm not sure if I need any kind of internal RAID system at all. Wouldn't it be better to dump all of my footage to external hard drives (RAID or not) and edit directly from external drives? Below are my selections. 256 GB SSD seems good for the OS and one 512 GB SSD for internal storage for field editing. Am I making a mistake assuming that external hard drives are best for editing in the office? I'm trying to avoid lengthy copying and pasting of projects and footage. That is all down time and I'd rather spend my time being productive.

https://farm6.staticflickr.com/5554/...1bc71297_o.gif
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Old August 27th, 2014, 04:26 PM   #8
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Re: Editing on a laptop?

I generally edit from footage on the internal drive, and backup all footage to duplicate external drives, stored in different locations. To make changes easy, things like the save file for Sony Vegas is in Dropbox, so it's automatically backed up, and can be downloaded to any machine. If a problem ever arises, I won't lose any previous work.

For now, I store all the raw footage for six months AFTER the client gets their finished product. Sometime after that, I might delete it, but so far, the average time after event is 9-12 months later. I always keep the finished videos, and the DVD project files to make new copies easy.

//I edit from a laptop because I already own a powerful pair - I use them as a DJ, at school dances I can play the music and videos (sent to TVs and projection screens) simultaneously
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Old August 27th, 2014, 09:57 PM   #9
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Re: Editing on a laptop?

Thanks Robert.

Finally, how will this laptop handle audio? I will be editing for TV and would like to create my initial mix on the Premiere Pro CC timeline in 5.1 (I would imagine that the final deliverable would be ac3). Is there a specific sound card I should be looking for in this laptop that will handle real-time 5.1 preview from the timeline? Or should I simply run HDMI to a surround sound receiver? How will the surround sound receiver process this? Uncompressed PCM? Dolby TrueHD? DTS-HD?

Thanks!
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Old August 27th, 2014, 11:01 PM   #10
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Re: Editing on a laptop?

Went ahead and pulled the trigger on this bad boy:

https://farm6.staticflickr.com/5593/...b05233a7_o.jpg
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Old August 28th, 2014, 05:28 AM   #11
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Re: Editing on a laptop?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chet Kenisell View Post
Thanks for all of your help thus far! I have read everything that I can on the PPBM6 for CS6 site about a "Balanced" system and have decided that a GTX card would be more cost effective than a Quadro card. However, I'm assuming that Premiere Pro CC would still be editing the 10-bit 4:2:2 PreRES HQ with no problem even though the video card and monitor only supports 8-bit. Is that correct?
That is correct. For instance, a lossless AVI HD file, exported from AE, is treated as RGBA 4444.

Quote:
Now, for the storage. Please pardon the large graphic below, but I need some help selecting my storage for editing purposes. I am currently configuring a Sager laptop (per many of your suggestions above).

Here's the thing: I'm not sure if I need any kind of internal RAID system at all. Wouldn't it be better to dump all of my footage to external hard drives (RAID or not) and edit directly from external drives? Below are my selections. 256 GB SSD seems good for the OS and one 512 GB SSD for internal storage for field editing. Am I making a mistake assuming that external hard drives are best for editing in the office? I'm trying to avoid lengthy copying and pasting of projects and footage. That is all down time and I'd rather spend my time being productive.
I don't think you need raid on this laptop. But let me make some small alterations as a suggestion to you.

mSATA OS disk: 256 GB Corsair M550. OK. OS and page-file.
mSATA Drive 2: 512 GB Corsair M550. OK. Media cache, preview.
Hard disk drive 1: I would suggest a 512 GB Samsung 840 Pro SSD. Media & Projects.

For the optical drive bay, I would suggest to add a drive caddy with a 1 TB 7200 HDD if that comes in addition to the BDR burner and they are easily swappable. If it is either / or, then use a 1 TB 7200 HDD as Drive 2. Backup of Media & Projects, plus exports.
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Old August 28th, 2014, 10:27 AM   #12
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Re: Editing on a laptop?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Harm Millaard View Post
That is correct. For instance, a lossless AVI HD file, exported from AE, is treated as RGBA 4444.
Sweet! Thanks for that!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Harm Millaard View Post
mSATA OS disk: 256 GB Corsair M550. OK. OS and page-file.
mSATA Drive 2: 512 GB Corsair M550. OK. Media cache, preview.
Hard disk drive 1: I would suggest a 512 GB Samsung 840 Pro SSD. Media & Projects.

For the optical drive bay, I would suggest to add a drive caddy with a 1 TB 7200 HDD if that comes in addition to the BDR burner and they are easily swappable. If it is either / or, then use a 1 TB 7200 HDD as Drive 2. Backup of Media & Projects, plus exports.
Harm, I ended up just putting the 1 TB 7200 HDD as Hard disk drive 1 and opted to not buy the drive caddy and went with the BD Burner. However, the good news is that I can simply buy the swappable drive caddy and move the 7200 HDD there and purchase a 512 GB Samsung 840 Pro SSD to replace the 7200 HDD in the Hard disk drive 1 spot. Thanks for the suggestions!

Any thoughts on my 5.1 audio mixing needs?
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Old August 28th, 2014, 10:54 AM   #13
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Re: Editing on a laptop?

Yoy will need the Minnetonka Surcode plug-in, but you can use on-board sound. On export it will appear as an .AC3 file in 5.1 Dolby Digital. Since it is a fully licensed plug-in, it also means you can legally use any Dolby Digital logo on your BDR's.
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Old August 28th, 2014, 04:54 PM   #14
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Re: Editing on a laptop?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Harm Millaard View Post
Yoy will need the Minnetonka Surcode plug-in, but you can use on-board sound. On export it will appear as an .AC3 file in 5.1 Dolby Digital. Since it is a fully licensed plug-in, it also means you can legally use any Dolby Digital logo on your BDR's.
Thanks again. I'll look into this Minnetonka Surcode plug-in now. 5.1 Dolby Digital is a lossy format. Will this allow me to do Dolby TrueHD Lossless?
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Old August 29th, 2014, 06:25 AM   #15
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Re: Editing on a laptop?

Dolby TrueHD lossless requires a different program, I think. I have never bothered with that and found 5.1, even though it is lossy, to be more than enough for my purposes.

My reasoning is that on DVD or BDR space is limited and video needs to be compressed, which is lossy by nature. The higher the bitrate I can use on the encoding, the less loss I have, but that reduces space for the audio. It is always a balance, but IMHO video is more important than audio.
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