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Old April 18th, 2005, 10:40 PM   #1
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Mac or PC? Help!

I know that a lot of people have asked this question before but.. i really need help deciding.

i am about to make an investment on my production company and i havent made up my mind if to buy... mac g5 with final cut pro or a pc with matrox and adobe premier pro.

please guys, i really need help to decide. which one is the best if you do video production and film production.

Thanks in advance for your help.
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Old April 19th, 2005, 12:00 AM   #2
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This is the wrong forum for this kind of question, but a moderator should move this thread. (Note: You should start threads in the appropriate forum... this goes in one of the editing forums, or the open DV forum.)

As far as your question goes:
Figure out what you want to do (what your goals are, what kind of editing you want to do, what formats you want to handle [i.e. DVD, betaSP, film, DVCAM, DVCPRO, etc. etc.]).

Then look at your choices. The most popular recommendations are:
Final Cut
Premiere with hardware acceleration

For most users, all of the above systems will do the job well. I don't think you can go wrong with any of them, unless it doesn't handle a particular format or your system is unstable/not working.

Personally I would choose Vegas or Final Cut.
Vegas: Very, very powerful editor if you know how to use it. Audio is the best of among the four, compositing is very strong, color correction is the best (out of the box), cheap (especially on white box or self-assembled PC), stable (from the first version), hard to misconfigure your system (unlike Premiere Pro, or Avid to a lesser degree).
Downsides: Slow rendering (Vegas 6 may change this), poor media management, does not follow Final Cut/Avid editing style. In the past, didn't handle certain formats like betaSP (Vegas 6 changes this... hopefully it works well).

Final Cut:
Runs on a Mac, which is arguably much easier to use than a PC (I personally agree). Plus, you can't screw it up with viruses or spyware (if you run a PC and don't know what spyware is, that's not good).
Final Cut has broad industry support and supports many of the formats out there.
Most people find the program easy to use.
Decent real-time performance, until you don't use Apple-optimized filters. Some parts of Final Cut are sluggish (nesting, preparing video for display, building waveforms).
Great for cuts and dissolve editing.
Not quite as powerful as Vegas (without 3rd party programs).

Premiere Pro:
Premiere Pro changed things around to be very much like Final Cut on PC, except with following downsides:
As far as I know, it's slow without a hardware acceleration card. The hardware acceleration cards require very specific configurations, otherwise they will give you problems.
Not stable on first version. Historically, Premiere had many bugs in it. It should be pretty stable now that 1.5 is out.
Runs on PC (see my comments about Mac).
In my very biased opinion, get yourself the real deal: A Mac running Final Cut.
To be fair, Premiere can be good deal if you want After Effects too. Some of the bundles are really good value.

Never tried it, sorry.

You might want to try demo-ing those systems... (i.e. go to a Mac store for Final Cut) and see which system makes sense to you. Vegas and Premiere have PC demos, Avid has a free watered-down version.
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Old April 19th, 2005, 04:53 AM   #3
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Angel: I've renamed your thread to clearly indicate what you are looking for
(A title like "need help" etc. doesn't really tell anyone anything at all!) and
indeed moved your thread to our general forum (Open DV Discussion).

Rob Lohman,
DV Info Wrangler & RED Code Chef

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Old April 19th, 2005, 05:16 AM   #4
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Just because a person wants to use FCP, is a terrible reason to choose Mac. It is also the only reason I would go back.

But then, choosing Premiere is limiting yourself as well. Don't get me wrong, I like Premiere. However, the INDUSTRY in general prefers Avid, and if things should change for you, having Avid experience would be a plus. Going for an editing job with Premiere experience, is like saying you can tie your shoes. Big deal.
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Old April 20th, 2005, 09:55 PM   #5
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for a "investment" in a production company !!
you list 2 NLE's .. IMO you have not listed a choice !!
go with FCP5 ...

note - many POST houses you will find them over flowing with Avids but most will have a room or 2 with FCP ..

many movie trailer houses have moved to FCP from avid because of the lower cost per edit station and it does the job .....
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Old April 21st, 2005, 10:36 AM   #6
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I love LCP and macs so that what I'm all about.
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Old April 21st, 2005, 03:20 PM   #7
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If you go Mac, wait for Final Cut Studio also. I've been looking at the demo videos of it (I'm a PC, Vegas user BTW) and It looks absolutely awesome. So much so that I am contemplating a shift over to FCP and Macs. Part of the decision was that FCP editing skills are more sought after than Vegas, so as I get good as FCP I can possible work in that area.

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Old May 25th, 2005, 02:14 PM   #8
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*relentlessly chants "Mac! Mac! Mac!"
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Old May 25th, 2005, 02:41 PM   #9
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Being a PC user I would STILL say MAC. You may wish to consider if you have used MACs before or have experience with the OS and file system. Yes OSX is an easy OS to learn but if you are a PC Power User you will still need some time to learn its qwerks and avenues. BTW MACs can still get viri too. MACs though are known to be the better of the two for production. Too bad Linux hasn't a choice...

This also depends on how much money you want to spend. I use PPro 1.5.1, AE 6.5, and a couple other pieces of software on a speedy PC. I love it. But would gladly trade for a MAC with more power and a less troublesome OS. I just don't have the $4,000+ for the rig I want.
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Old May 25th, 2005, 03:03 PM   #10
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I'm for any decision that doesn't make Microsoft richer... a completely non-inovative company. Everything they ever came up with was either a cleverly disguised copy or it was directly hijacked.

Give your money to the comany the creates, designs, and taylors their product development to the higher powered users. Apple is deffinately the more forward thinking company. Anyone dissagree?

(former PC user)
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Old May 25th, 2005, 04:15 PM   #11
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Craig, one exception would be the Apple mouse. It still has one button and no scroll wheel.... of course, it's not a big deal if you just buy a new mouse.

Or a PC. ;)
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Old May 25th, 2005, 10:21 PM   #12
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FCP and Mac! The only way to go! I've given up on Windoze running anything, it just isn't a decent option for a professional environment.
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Old May 25th, 2005, 11:01 PM   #13
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Windows is in fact a decent option for a professional environment, provided the system is properly set up, preferably by an integrator who knows their business. Canopus has quite a range of NLE hardware and software to fit just about every budget, plus Canopus has a rock-solid reputation for sturdiness and reliability on a Windows platform. At my old studio, our Canopus system paid for itself within a couple of months. And it's practically crash-proof. You can't go wrong with any Canopus application on a properly configured Windows machine.

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Old May 25th, 2005, 11:16 PM   #14
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I switched from FCP on a Mac to Vegas on a PC. Personally, I'd have a hard time going back, but to each his own.

Remember that you can do equal quality work whichever way you go. When one platform adds a new feature, the others are sure to follow. It's kind of like saying which brand of power tools will help you build a better house. It's more a question of how you would like to work than anything.
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Old May 25th, 2005, 11:53 PM   #15
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*ding ding ding* We have a winner!

Thanks Laurence for an excellent reply and a great way to wrap up this discussion.

I would like to add that Macs and properly configured Windows machines crash on an equal basis. It's rare for either but it happens sometimes. In the long run, if you're not already committed to being all-Mac or all-PC in your house, then choose your NLE application and go from there. Trial versions of popular NLE software are a great way to find which interfaces you're most comfortable with.

Finally, this really is a Ford vs. Chevy debate with plenty of zeal from both sides. I can't see it accomplishing anything much from this point, so before the platform wars break out, we're going to shut down this thread.

Thanks to all who have responded,

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