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Old January 9th, 2002, 08:49 PM   #16
 
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Well, guys, I can't argue with you when it comes to "turn key" purchases. I owned a Mac once and couldn't stand the lack of control over the OS. I'm really a tinkerer at heart. I just love getting into the nuts and bolts of my tyan duallie PC, which I built from the ground up. There's nothing like the lump I get in my throat the first time I power up a new build...LOL....pretty twisted, huh? Just can't DO that with a Mac.
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Old January 9th, 2002, 08:53 PM   #17
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I'm with you Bill. I like being able to use the components I wish to use. I like being able to easily upgrade and have a wide choice of components. If something goes wrong, I know exactly what is in my computer.
TekVideo- also running a dual AMD setup.
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Old January 10th, 2002, 05:29 AM   #18
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I looked at macs myself, and they probably do a pretty decent job with dv. But, I found that pc processor speeds are getting close to that of macs(according to user testing). My co-workers use pc's so it would be a little more effort to integrate...you might want to consider if you will be working with pc users or not. Macs are also expensive...I'm not cutting on macs here; I know they have a place in graphics and video. I have decided that the dual amd canopus setup fits me best. If the other users here were using macs, I would have chosen the mac.
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Old January 10th, 2002, 03:51 PM   #19
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To: Mike Butler

Are you related to Bill Butler, who was a cinematographer for Major Hollywood Projects 15 to 30 years ago?
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Old January 10th, 2002, 04:25 PM   #20
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Well, they don't just probably do a pretty decent job, people make a living using them...I know. If you really want to spend your time racking up billable hours and not "under the hood" tinkering, the mac is not expensive at all.

Here's an analogy. Back when I was a boy, I used to spend all kinds of time tearing cars apart, rebuilding and installing engines, doing valve jobs, swapping out transmissions, playing with carburetors, adding various performance and custom parts and so on without end. That's when I had time on my hands and very little money in my pocket, and needed to do that. Now, I just jump into my Corvette and go wherever the road goes. I know there are (not many) cars with higher advertised horsepower (processor speed?) or cars with lower initial price tags, especially if you don't mind hanging out at the parts counters of speed shops, but I really don't have time for that.
And it's just like that with computer editing stations. Except that I was never a tinkerer at heart with computers, just wanted a tool to get the job done. That's why so many graphic designers and multimedia producers, including Hollywood studios buy Macs. Firewire right out of the box and ready to edit the minute you unpack it.

BTW, I am the only Mac user in an office of 150 people. I have both platforms on my desk, but my PC is a long ways from being ready to cut video. I'll let you know if I ever get a Windows PC working as an edit workstation.

Gotta go now, I just got sign-off on a 4-minute sales tape (totally posted in FCP) and need to dub 150 VHS copies and burn 150 CD's of it.

Cheers
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Old January 10th, 2002, 05:12 PM   #21
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I'm sure the Macs are good. I just don't see how one could be nearly as powerfull, have more features, and be as stable as my Dual AMD 1600/DV Storm combo. If mine is more powerfull, and does nearly everything in realtime because of that power, then I spend *less* time tinkering, and *more* time being creative with my editing, and making money because I can offer a better product in less time.

Your analogy was pretty good. I however *enjoyed* building my PC's, and saved money at the same time! I still enjoy building my computers.
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Old January 10th, 2002, 06:43 PM   #22
 
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Check out this clip from: http://www.eet.com/story/OEG20020103S0069

While multi-processing may not bring a significant benefit to the casual everyday internet surfer, I think it's a given that it's the way to go for video processing...and this will get even better as more software gets multi-threaded.

______________________________________________
Multiple processors


On the processor front, Apple may be inclined to think two is better than one. Jobs is expected to unveil a speed bump from the current high-end 800-MHz Power PCs to a gigahertz processor. The company is also expected to significantly expand its use of dual processing this year beyond a high-end Power Mac G4.

"I think everything except the laptops will go multiprocessing," said Doherty.

Such a move could help Apple counter threats of being left in the dust from the Intel-based PC world which is already shipping processors at or near the 2-GHz level. But others questioned the wisdom of doubling up on CPUs.

"One fast processor is usually better than two slow ones," said Reynolds. "It sounds strange to put dual processors on all of the systems when only 20 percent of users might want them because it's a cost issue and it's such a good upgrade opportunity. It would speed video editing or Photoshop for instance, but I don't see a role across the whole desktop product line."
__________________________________

Furthermore, consider that your "productivity" is zero/zip/nada on a single cpu system while you're rendering. On a duallie system, you can go on working on that business proposal while you're still rendering that job assignment.
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Old January 11th, 2002, 05:11 AM   #23
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I thought I was careful about how I worded my January 10th post. Maybe not. My intent was not to offend Mac users. As I said before, I'm sure Macs do a pretty decent job. I'm not going to testify in blind faith that they are best solution for everyone. And I sure as hell will not moderate my view! 'The graphics guy' was obviously offended by my post. Or his mac was. Every forum has a couple of guys who claim to know it all.

I'm gonna be a know it all for a minte. Graphics guy: advertised horsepower? how about quantitative tests? Provide solid tests why the mac is faster and better for everyone doing any kind of video. By the way, horsepower ratings have been more accurate then ever. "Claimed horsepower" of the sixties and seventies is no more.
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Old January 11th, 2002, 12:35 PM   #24
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The graphics guy was not at all offended, nor do I care whether someone "moderates" their views...

...but never have I claimed to "know it all" about anything. I am attempting to honestly share my real-world experiences, just as we all should be doing.

"Provide solid tests why the mac is faster and better for everyone doing any kind of video? "

First show that I ever said anything about "everyone doing any kind of video!!!"

Once again, I am reporting my own experience... and that of a few (quite a few) busy professionals, including users much more sophisticated than me. Speaking of busy, do we really have time for the tired old "platform wars"? I use both platforms in my work, and couldn't be bothered with claims and counterclaims, nor am I impressed wtih dry statistics.

If anyone thinks that I "testify in blind faith that they are best solution for everyone", let's all re-read the part where I said: "...I was never a tinkerer at heart with computers, just wanted a tool to get the job done." and let's remember that the title of this thread says "I need opinions."

My speed test? Just the fact that my XL1 was plugged into my Mac and I was cutting video literally moments after unpacking, and have had ZERO downtime ever since. Meanwhile I am still looking for a Firewire card that I like for my PC. Not too happy with the Pyro DV, so I continue to read the posts of the real-world users' experiences with other cards. Hope to find a good one soon.

I certainly have nothing to prove to anyone, except to my clients who appreciate a project finshed on time. But I am interested in everyone's experiences with the different types of cards. My clients and I are glad we haven't had to put projects on hold till I find the right card.

I am in awe of those who love to build computers, I sure don't know how to do it!

Back to cars: "Quantitative tests?" How about the racing school in Florida that got rid of all its Vipers because the Z06 Vette with a "mere" 405hp had quicker lap speeds around the track?

BTW, no relation to Bill Butler.
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Old January 11th, 2002, 02:01 PM   #25
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Quantitative tests verify words. Word of mouth is not quantitative. Quantitative: my computer takes X number of minutes to render this file at these specifications. Not quantitative: my coputer is fast.You have not provided anything quantitative. Please report your own experience, we welcome that. In my first post I did not offend or attempt to offend mac users. A clean message about your setup, and how you feel it performs is the request of this thread. You have not responded to any of my questions. You were obviously offended, is all you have to do is ask for an apology. But if you don't ask I can't give. I figure you'll fire off once more after this post and our(at least mine) posts will be done.
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Old January 11th, 2002, 03:28 PM   #26
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I was very close to buying a Mac after trying to get a Pinnacle card to work reliably in my PC. I know where you're coming from graphics guy, but let me tell you. Using my very fast PC with a Canopus product has been an utter joy! No longer do I tinker to get it working.. No longer do I wait for rendering. I can edit for hours and hours, then simply hit "play" and record out to VHS and back to my XL1 at the same time. It saves so much time!
I can also easily upgrade to the Mpeg daughter card and encode to Mpeg2 DVD compliant files in realtime to record on my Pioneer DVR-A03.
I've also had ZERO downtime with the DV Storm. It's the quality of the components used for video that makes editing smooth and relaible. If you take a $60 plain old Pyro card, and compare it to a MAC with DV editing built in sure it's going to be ugly.

I'd suggest looking at the RaptorRT for your PC (or better yet DV Storm). You won't be sorry you did.
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Old January 11th, 2002, 03:59 PM   #27
 
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Hey Tekvideo.....

I'm using a Pinnacle 1394 card in one computer and a generic 1394 card in the other. Both will capture video from my XL1s flawlessly, and both computers are networked together over the 1394 bus. Sorry you seem to have had so much trouble with yours. Honestly, tho', I'm disappointed in the reliability of Pinnacle Studio 7 and Hollywood FX Pro for editting. I occassionally render animations consisting of 1200 individual bitmaps. In order to render these into frames for DV, I need over 2 gig in RAM and virtual filespace. I'm currently using Ulead MediaStudio Pro 6.5 because it has some nice transitions and a built in vectorscope and signal analyzer. MSP 6.6, unfortunately is still not multi-threaded. Can you tell me if Canopus Storm is multi-threaded? Also, do you know how the MPEG hardware encoding compares to the software encoding of TMPGEnc in quality? And finally, what have you noticed is the amount of RAM needed for your work?

I' ve been cosidering DV Storm, but, haven't decided yet. Thanks for any info you can provide.
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Old January 11th, 2002, 04:29 PM   #28
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http://www.justedit.com/products/stormrack.php3
Canopus even sells a turnkey NLE with dual AMD cpus. Yes, the Storm is fully multithreaded.
I find myself using the bundled StormEdit for most simple edits. It's fast, easy, and also multithreaded. For precise editing, I use Premiere 6 but frankly, I find myself using StormEdit most of the time.

GuyGraphics had a writeup comparing the Mpeg module with LSX, RT2500, Softencode (the free software encoder included with the storm).
From the review: "The MPEG Module is going to give you the best of both worlds -- the best MPEG2 quality and the fastest encoding time.
So, if quality and speed is your main priority then the MPEG Module is the winner hands down."
I find that the softencode does very well for Mpeg2 DVD, but if Mpeg1, VCD, or Mpeg2 SVCD is your main concern then TMPEnc seems better suited for those.
If you need speed, and quality for Mpeg2 DVD complaint, then the Mpeg Module seems to be the ticket.

Trying to explain the bennefits of editing with the Storm is hard to do. It just feels better. It's more responsive. Editing goes very smoothly, and without issue. Especially on a powerfull PC such as a dual AMD system.
As for RAM, more is always better. I have 768mb, and dedicate 256mb just to the Storm. The Storm will render ahead and store the bits in a memory "buffer". So, the more memory you have the larger this buffer can be and the more you can do in realtime.
I hope this helps.
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Old January 14th, 2002, 08:14 PM   #29
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Well said, TekVid! My expectations when gettting the Pyro (it did get ugly like you said) were naively that I merely needed a simple IEEE 1394 port which the PC lacked in OEM trim, and I was lulled into thinking that was that, after my experience with the Mac G4 (just hauling it out of the box and jumping into an instantly profitable editing project--and many more after that).

Obviously things are more complicated when I deviate from Apple's "spoon-fed" DV Firewire approach, especially me not being a computer engineer, so I am still shopping for cards. Looks like we are leaning toward one which bundles Premiere 6, the de facto standard, which I may as well get comfortable with, since regrettably there is no PC that will run my beloved FCP.

I ditto your recommendation of 768MB RAM, that's what I loaded into the G4, might have even gone for more when buying the machine if I were on the market now. My new Windows box will definitely have at least a gig.
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Old January 15th, 2002, 02:50 PM   #30
 
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Thanx for the feedback, guys. This is a belated reply bacuse Sunday night I ended up at the hospital with an emergency appendectomy. Home, now, and I can get back to my video stuff. Anway, thanks for the input. Yeah. I wish FCP was avalablr for a PC, but, I guess it's Apple's "shining star" so they probably won't ever write a PC version. I'm gonna save my pennies and go ro Storm...it sounds good to me. Thanks again for the input.
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