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Panasonic P2HD / DVCPRO HD Camcorders
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Old July 10th, 2006, 11:19 AM   #1
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Windows notebook or Mac faster in the field

Will be getting my HVX202 with two 8gig P2 cards next week and still haven't decided on which system to use in the field.

I would like to know which is better/faster working with in the field, a windows PC notebook with p2 viewer or a powerbook G4 with P2 Log?

I will be shooting a tv commercial next month on P2 & want to sort out my hardware asap for tests. I decided not to get a P2 store as I've heard it's slow.

Any help will be really appreciated.
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Old July 10th, 2006, 12:16 PM   #2
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I can't really answer that question, but would only point out that Mac notebooks are now also fast Windows notebooks. For about $150 extra you can order the new Intel MacBooks with Windows XP pre-installed.
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Old July 10th, 2006, 12:46 PM   #3
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We noticed no real difference in speed. It isn't a processor that you are realying on, but the transfer speed of the PCMCIA bus and firewire bus to the drive. They are basically the same.
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Old July 10th, 2006, 03:24 PM   #4
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There should be both Windows and Mac based notebooks with enough beef to work with your HVX. I'd probably recommend basing the purchase on the software that you want to run in the field. If you're not interested in doing streaming capture or editing in the field and just want to dump P2 cards.. I'd probably just recommend a low cost windows notebook with a large hard drive running at 5400 or maybe even 7200rpm.

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Old July 11th, 2006, 11:53 AM   #5
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Go Windows PC

I'd recommend a new Windows PC with a PCMCIA slot for dumping footage -- over a new Mac. The new Macs don't have a PCMCIA slot. PCMCIA USB adapters are supposedly coming in a few months -- but if I had to make a choice now, I'd choose the PC. In fact, I've got a PC laptop for this same purpose now and an external bus powered drive attached -- but I do my editing on my Mac at home.
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Old July 11th, 2006, 12:15 PM   #6
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Thanks Philip :)

Im just using it to dump p2 cards on an external drive and backup on dual layer dvd's.

So, I've decided to run a windows notebook with two 2.5" 100GB external hard drives and a dvd+-rw dual layer drive. It should be cheaper and more robust/reliable in the field.

Will I be able to preview p2 clips from my external drive with Windows P2 viewer? Any minimum requirements for graphic cards for p2 viewer?
The HP notebook im getting has an intel extreme 950 graphics card with 128MB ram.
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Old July 11th, 2006, 01:54 PM   #7
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Most any video card will do these days, as video is 2-d, rather than 3-d. Spending more on a graphics card usually just means faster 3-d rendering - and shorter battery life.

The more important consideration is the quality and resolution of the display.

I'm a Vegas fan, but if you're just doing previews, you might opt for the Canopus editing software. I believe that it has native support for DVCProHD. I would guess that you don't need the most powerful or easiest to use NLE for this task. I would think that slamming some cuts together would be the main goal.

You might want to do some color correction too, to make sure that you can get the desired look. I don't know about Canopus' capabilities, but Vegas has very full featured primary and secondary color correction. It's also quick at hand, which is a nice feature for basic edits. You would need Raylight or Cineform software to convert the media to a Vegas friendly format though...
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Old July 11th, 2006, 03:50 PM   #8
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So, can I preview my takes/footage at the end of the day on windows P2 viewer via my hard disk??

I don't need to edit or colour grade footage on set. I just need to check what i've shot and make sure everything is there at the end of the day. Then send my drives off to the post house.

On my windows PC Im using adobe Premiere Pro 2.0.
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Old July 11th, 2006, 04:21 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Adam Lokman
So, can I preview my takes/footage at the end of the day on windows P2 viewer via my hard disk??
I would think it should work, but of course you'll have to try it to confirm that. And ditto what Jon said to try the Canopus Edius software - but note you have to get the 'Broadcast' version for $999 to read HVX200 files. With that and a good dual-core laptop you should be able to do a fair amount of editing without going back to a desktop system, and you might be pleasantly surprised what Edius can do without rendering.
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Old July 12th, 2006, 06:24 AM   #10
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Thanks for the info guys :)

Thanks for the info guys :)
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Old July 13th, 2006, 12:19 PM   #11
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FCP on Mac for P2

I'vebeen using a mac book pro for bringing in footage from P2 cards, and actual live capture. I've also had the "pleasure" of trying to get the p2 to work well with an Avid Adrenaline Machine. From my experiences, even though theoretically the Avid Adrenaline machine is superior, it is far...far... slower to edit and work with for p2 cards. Panasonic and Apple have done an excellent job integrating the P2 format with FCP HD. Its easy, one click, viewing P2 information, clips. PLUS! you can go from format to format no problem, i have 480i formats working flawlessly with 1080i/24p format video, its seamless.

Anyway, I would recommend getting a Mac versus a PC.
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Old July 13th, 2006, 12:51 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Greg Almond
Panasonic and Apple have done an excellent job integrating the P2 format with FCP HD. Its easy, one click, viewing P2 information, clips.
Doesn't FCP have to convert the video into a Quicktime wrapper first, and if so how long does that take?
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Old July 14th, 2006, 01:54 AM   #13
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Doesn't FCP have to convert the video into a Quicktime wrapper first, and if so how long does that take?
About 3 minutes for 7.14 gb.
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