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Old October 20th, 2015, 05:11 PM   #1
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How much do you invest in a pc?

My editing pc's are never the fastest I can buy and I prefer to get something with a proven reliability history then being on the cutting edge. My current pc is a i7 3770 with 8gb of memory which is 3 years old but the past year, for whatever reason I got different kinds of instability issues and last week it refused to start up anymore and it kept hanging in the bootscreen with no way to get into the bios. Imagine the horror of not being able to open that weddingproject I nearly had finished and 2 others I had been making some rough editing on. I eventually got it to start up just by replugging the mouse and keyboard usb plugs into another port and then I saw a black screen with continuous messages about errors found on one of my drives and it was repairing it.

This pc actually belonged to my dad who passed away 2 years ago and it replaced my i7 950, my dad had this pc custom build by one or the other computer nerd so don't know if the instability issues where already caused by a wrong choice of hardware. It was not easy for me to continue using his pc as it felt I was stealing something from him but it was a bit silly to sell it and it had better specs then my pc I was using then.

The past 2 years it has served me well but I got more and more problems with it, especially the past half year, maybe because of a malfunction harddrive or another piece of hardware.

So I decided it was time to get a new pc and I was surprised how cheap I was able to get one from on of our largest pc store for less then 1000 euro excl taxes (1134 dollar) for a i7 4790k with 32gb of memory and a 250gb samsung ssd. For only 50 euro more I could get the new i7 6700k but I could not find any confirmation back if gpu on the motherboard supported quicksync in combination with Edius, I only found back that the current intel drivers did not make this work. But the i7 4790k was well known for it's excellent performance and many users use this processor in combination with edius and quicksync does work with the cpu. The new I7 6700k is just a bit faster, only the gpu on the motherboard is about 15-20% faster but I didn't want to take the risk of not getting quicksync to work and being stuck with cpu rendering only and I didn't want to wait until I found out. I still have quite some weddings to edit so needed something, hopefully, reliable asap.

quicksync is something you absolutely need with edius as it improves on 4k playback and improves rendertimes drastically compared to cpu only.

I was also surprised about the performance gains I got, a 10 minute sequence with a mixture of 4k from the ax100 and footage from the gh4 and rx10 took only 3min 30 sec to render to a 1080p mp4 file and if I rendered to a hqavi file, edius own intermediate codec, it only took 02:23.

I was also able to run four 4k files from a ax100 in a multicam sequence in realtime without any stutter, once I added a 5th layer it was not realtime anymore, the videofiles where running on a raid 0 which where two 2tb wd red pro drives.

So I recovered my nvidia quadro k420 card from my old pc (edius doesn't need a fast graphics card) and I added my old winfast PxVC1100 card which works together with tmpgenc authoring works and can render a bluray disc in twice realtime and then I recovered my hd spark card from my old pc that sends what is on the timeline full screen to a full hd tv so I have 2 pc screens with edius on it and the tv as my full screen preview.

Hopefully this will keep me going the following 4 or so years, do you guys invest a lot in your editing pc's and do you choose the components specifically for your NLE?

Last edited by Noa Put; October 20th, 2015 at 05:42 PM.
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Old October 20th, 2015, 05:33 PM   #2
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Re: How much do you invest in a pc?

Noa, I am also an Edius user ver. 5.51 on a custom PC built in 2009 with an i7 920 processor and HD Spark card out to a HDTV. It works very well but obviously does not work with 4K. So I am looking to upgrade soon. Thanks for the helpful information. I was leaning towards the 6700 processor but it sounds like the 4790 will work well.
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Old October 20th, 2015, 05:38 PM   #3
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Re: How much do you invest in a pc?

I have edius 8 workgroup, forgot to mention that. The i7 6700k is a faster cpu from the benchmarks I have seen but cpu speed is just a very minor difference, only the gpu makes more difference. It might work perfect with edius, don't know yet, but I don't regret getting the older version, it's more then fast enough for my purpose. Edius 5.5 was my first nle from edius I used after I switched from premiere cs3. By far the most stable version I had used. Edius 6 was quite unstable on my machine, edius 7 was better but still had issues and edius 8 is again rocksolid so far.
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Old October 20th, 2015, 08:21 PM   #4
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Re: How much do you invest in a pc?

I just spent 1500 on a custom built one.

Time to build has most of what I bought.

I hope it gives me 3 more years, I plan to go full bore FCXP hopefully the next time I build or need a new machine since I groan a lot using Vegas.

I bought all my stuff from Newegg, for what that's worth.
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Old October 21st, 2015, 04:08 AM   #5
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Re: How much do you invest in a pc?

Without wanting to start a debate about Mac v PC :) but after years of PC unreliability I bought a 27 inch iMac, now nearly two years old and hasn't missed a beat, I rarely got more than 2 years out of a PC and I never owned a trouble free one despite them being built to custom spec
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Old October 21st, 2015, 04:23 AM   #6
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Re: How much do you invest in a pc?

The pc I inherited from my dad was actually the first one that caused me problems, probably because it was custombuild. Before that some of my pc's where prebuild models from bigger local pc stores and I also owned a few dell's before that. Never had any problems worth mentioning. My wife still uses my first q6600 quad core I got from Dell which I think is around 8 years old and to my surprise it still is running :) My replacement cycle is usually every 3-4 years, not because I have to but considering the low cost for a replacement the performance gains I get each time are worth it.
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Old October 21st, 2015, 07:50 AM   #7
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Re: How much do you invest in a pc?

I like making my own PC's. Part of my retirement hobby and that way I research what to put in it and construct myself. Replace about every 2 years and sometimes just do an upgrade and sometimes a complete replace. Older PC's do some other duty in the house. Have one for just finance ( no email at all etc ), one for just email and WEB surfing, my wife has one etc. The last edit PC is now my email and WEB surfing PC and still has EDIUS 6.08 on it. Latest is an i7 4790 running WIN 7 and EDIUS 7.5. Will wait until EDIUS 8.1 comes out and may build an i7 6700K with WIN 10 then. I have been building PC's since the late 1980's and the only problems have been hardware failures of hard drives etc that has been common to the friends with Mac's too . Unlike a Mac, PC's have the opportunity to install hardware and software that are not compatible.

PC's and video are a couple of hobbies where technology progress gives more for the same replacement cost or a straight replacement of functionality for a lot less. My i7 4790 was just an upgrade of processor , motherboard and memory so was less than $800 for a big improvement over the i7 2600K originally in that box.

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Old October 21st, 2015, 08:31 AM   #8
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Re: How much do you invest in a pc?

I built my first computer in Dec 2011. Saved several hundred dollars by buying Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals, along with all the sales this time of year.

A comparable Dell was around $4,000 and I built mine for under $2,000.

i7 2600K
16GB RAM
NVidia GTX 560 (I think it was)
750W modular power
Corsair Case
Liquid Cooling System
now has 6 hard drives in it.

It's probably time to upgrade to the latest and greatest. 4 years is a pretty good run for me, and if it wasn't for 4K stuff, I wouldn't even be thinking about upgrading because it's still rock solid 4 years later.
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Old October 21st, 2015, 05:51 PM   #9
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Re: How much do you invest in a pc?

I built mine and have upgraded parts as I have been able to afford it. I am going to assume it's around 1k. I am definitely going to get another GPU so I can have two running next. :)
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Old October 22nd, 2015, 12:11 AM   #10
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Re: How much do you invest in a pc?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Phil Stanley View Post
Without wanting to start a debate about Mac v PC :) but after years of PC unreliability I bought a 27 inch iMac, now nearly two years old and hasn't missed a beat, I rarely got more than 2 years out of a PC and I never owned a trouble free one despite them being built to custom spec
I agree 100%. My 2008 Mac Pro 3,1 8 core 2x2.8GHz is still going strong almost seven years after purchase (€2200/1730 in November 2008).

I have upgraded it a little with SSD disks on a SATA-III PCIe card, USB-3 card, a faster graphics card (GTX570) & it now has 32GB of memory. I also had to replace the power supply that failed after six years. Newer versions of OS X are faster & more memory efficient (also confirmed on my seven year old MacBook Pro) so even without the upgrades it would actually be faster than when I bought it!

Best of all it's been 100% rock solid without crashes, driver conflicts or any of the 101 irritations & foibles that I endured over the years with Windows systems.
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Old October 22nd, 2015, 02:35 AM   #11
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Re: How much do you invest in a pc?

That's one of the advantages of a closed system where the manufacturer decides for you what hardware can be used and that adds to the stability, maybe that's why my wifes 7-8 years old dell still runs on it's original components eventhough she has problems every now and then but that is because of all the shareware crap she installs on her pc. Otoh I read enough about Dell users that have had their share of issues. Also it's not because you buy a pc or a mac where the manufacturer limits your upgrading options to ensure stability that it is a failsafe system, there are also enough reports from people having problems and a mac is not an exception here, hardware does eventually fail and failing hardware results in a unstable system.

Quote:
I have upgraded it a little with SSD disks on a SATA-III PCIe card, USB-3 card, a faster graphics card (GTX570) & it now has 32GB of memory. I also had to replace the power supply that failed after six years. Newer versions of OS X are faster & more memory efficient (also confirmed on my seven year old MacBook Pro) so even without the upgrades it would actually be faster than when I bought it!
I also have upgraded older pc's in the past to find out it's often not worth the cost compared to just buying a new pc, Much depends on what components your NLE depends on most but the sheer processing power of a current processor, like a i7 6700k compared to one from 7 years ago, even if that would be a xeon processor might result in doubling the speed of your renders and handling current processor intensive native codecs without much sweat while the older system would choke on it, even with memory or graphics card upgrades.

The only reason why I would not invest in a Mac is because it is so expensive and I do know you do get a good system in return but what I do read is that Mac owners often tend to stretch their mac''s life by upgrading because that still is much cheaper then buying a new system but eventually you do end up with a system that will become slower then a 1K new pc. Raw speed would not be the most important part for me, stability is, but second is definitely easy handling of any codec I trow at it.

I also think that pc's and Mac's are being used longer by photographers and that they rather replace components then just buying a new machine, especially the past years video codecs have stressed computercomponents a lot more then dealing with jpegs or raw photos, that's why my wife is still happy with that q6600 processor pc with 4gb of memory to deal with her photos in photoshop. I wouldn't event think of using that machine to deal with my ax100 or gh4 4K files as it would just come to a halt :)
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Old October 22nd, 2015, 05:14 AM   #12
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Re: How much do you invest in a pc?

since I got the two AX100's my machine is almost at the limit for processing etc. I probably need a faster GPU not to mention storage, I currently have 4 Tb internally installed and another 5 Tb external I will probably need more by next year,
I'd like if i could have everything on Linux to run natively not in a virtual box Wine etc.
I use a Mac sometimes as well as a PC i'm not really brand conscious same with phones and cameras or cars, if it does the job great!

:-)
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Old October 22nd, 2015, 05:57 AM   #13
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Re: How much do you invest in a pc?

FWIW Rob, I now have everything I need for video editing running natively on Linux with the exception of Cinescore and Sonicfire Pro which are in Virtualbox, but that's because I choose to continue to use them occasionally.

In case it makes a difference I am not shooting UHD, although Cinelerra (HV) is supposed to be capable of editing it.

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Old October 22nd, 2015, 08:07 AM   #14
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Re: How much do you invest in a pc?

Well modern Mac's and PC's are all Intel PC's anyway. So the difference is the restrictions on hardware and software dictated by Apple. Do the same for a Windows PC and the outcome will be the same. I have one PC that has been running well without failure for almost 8 years and has been upgraded with software from XP to WIN 7. Also since they are the same hardware the performance is likely very close for the same components, including failure of power supplies etc as noted.

The main differences are the choice of software and even that isn't much of a restriction these days if a Mac owner wants to run Windows software. I know lots who have both a Mac and PC purely to run the software they want to use which in my mind is the correct way of looking at purely a computing engine.

The vulnerability of PC's comes from the vast choice of software and hardware not available to a Mac leading to a very real clash of drivers etc. Also since there are a lot more PC's than Mac's they are a better target for hackers etc bent on causing problems. Easily solved by having more than one PC. I have a PC just for editing software that has given me no trouble through several upgrades of hardware and software. It has EDIUS 7.5 on it as well as Vegas 11 and Vegas 12 , Adobe Production Suite CS6 and lots of other software for editing. Only go to internet for program updates. I have another that I use for email and the WEB if that gets a virus ( never has so far ) I do not care just wipe and reload from an image file.

If you want to run EDIUS or Vegas you will need Windows. You can still do this on a Mac hardware these days though.

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Old October 22nd, 2015, 11:12 AM   #15
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Re: How much do you invest in a pc?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Phil Stanley View Post
Without wanting to start a debate about Mac v PC :) but after years of PC unreliability I bought a 27 inch iMac, now nearly two years old and hasn't missed a beat, I rarely got more than 2 years out of a PC and I never owned a trouble free one despite them being built to custom spec
My PC is 4 years old, same processor, and I'm editing multicamera 4K with it.

If you had unreliable PCs it was because of what you chose, not because PCs are inferior.

As a rule, people that know hardware very well are PC people. I assemble my own. Mac people tend to know very little a bout the inner workings of a computer. However, they can count on Mac because of the limited number of configurations and because they are all built by Apple, not dozens of different companies like PCs are. Hence, if you are a PC person you need to know what you're buying or build your own.
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