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FCP on IMAC

COW Forums : Apple FCPX or Not: The Debate

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sandy shapiroFCP on IMAC
by on Feb 16, 2012 at 7:52:51 pm

Hi,

I've heard rumors and see signs that Apple will discontinue their MacPro towers. Where do you see the future of Apple computers moving for editors? It seems as though the IMac will be powerful enough to handle heavy editing. Do you agree that this will be our machine of choice if we stay with Apple?

Aside: Laptop's are still a little too small and confined for me. I know there is an option of an external monitor, but I still like using a separate keyboard and my renders (FPC and AE) seem to be a little too heavy for the MacBookPro - meaning I burn through those machine quite quickly.

To summarize: If Apple kills the MacPro what system are you going to work with?

Thanks,

Sandy


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Steve ConnorRe: FCP on IMAC
by on Feb 16, 2012 at 8:21:59 pm

[sandy shapiro] "I've heard rumors and see signs that Apple will discontinue their MacPro towers. Where do you see the future of Apple computers moving for editors? It seems as though the IMac will be powerful enough to handle heavy editing. Do you agree that this will be our machine of choice if we stay with Apple?
"


Many of us don't believe the rumours, but if you take a browse through the forum there is plenty of speculation on here.

However a top spec 27" iMac with lots of RAM and a Thunderbolt drive would be a very good FCPX system.

Steve Connor
"FCPX Agitator"
Adrenalin Television


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Brad DavisRe: FCP on IMAC
by on Feb 16, 2012 at 8:26:09 pm

That has been one of the million dollar questions as of late. With all the hubub about Mountain Lion this morning one of my colleagues found a link (whether true or not remains to be seen) but any towers that predate 2007, won't work with the new OS. Also, with the increased production turn around times for current Mac Pro towers usually indicates the refresh is coming or something new is on the horizon.

There appears to be a change in how they handle PR recently and I hope it continues. For business to take Apple seriously in a business environment they have to transparent to a degree before companies drop large sums of cash on infrastructure. Steve Jobs was well known for not working well with businesses but with the iPhone, they've had to change their tune some.


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Mark BeinRe: FCP on IMAC
by on Feb 16, 2012 at 8:58:38 pm

[Brad Davis] "For business to take Apple seriously in a business environment they have to transparent to a degree before companies drop large sums of cash on infrastructure"

Then the clones will come out before the originals...


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Rick LangRe: FCP on IMAC
by on Feb 16, 2012 at 9:15:20 pm

I very much doubt the Mac Pro is dead. No one knows but my guess is a refresh no later than this summer. If you can wait and afford it, it will be Apple's high-end and most expandable offering.

If you need a new desktop sooner or want something more economical, an IMac gives you many options. I'd lean toward the maximum build-to-order configuration to last about five years or so. If you want screen real estate, the 27" model should suffice. The biggest downside is (currently) the lack if expansion of the graphics processor. Pick the top-of-the-line option again for the longest usable lifetime assuming finances allow it.

Rick Lang

iMac 27” 2.8GHz i7 16GB


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Phil HoppesRe: FCP on IMAC
by on Feb 16, 2012 at 9:18:39 pm

Although my current experience with FCPX is very limited, I just got my wife a new iMac and, of course, she needed it with the best graphics and fastes i7 core and then I upgraded it to 16Mb. Did not spring for an SSD but I can tell you that it is quite a sweet machine and FCPX run's quite nice. She might have a hard time getting it back..... but to your other point. I have a Oct 2011 MBP with an SSD and I just upgraded it to 16Gb of ram and added a second internal HD (momentus 750Gb hybrid) using the optical drive conversion kit from MacSales. It was a great laptop before an now it plain rocks. FCPX as well as everything else I run works quite nice. Would have preferred a Quadro Graphics card for the other software I run but all in all it works great for just about everything. I have no need for legacy work (broadcast or tape) so the lack of an expansion bus is moot for me and with T-bolt raid drives showing up current and future iMac's should work just fine for lots of editors. Precise color grading on a glossy monitor is not ideal but again. for lots of people this is not so much a "must have" as a "like to have".


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Jim GibertiRe: FCP on IMAC
by on Feb 16, 2012 at 9:58:48 pm

We've got 5 imac i7s running film, recording studio and design flawlessly.

Always had the biggest fastest towers.
Moved past them a while ago and haven't had a regret.


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Richard HerdRe: @Jim (off topic) FCP on IMAC
by on Feb 16, 2012 at 10:11:31 pm

Sorry to go off topic, but Jim have you made the tutorial for "bussing" audio around FCPX, yet?

Thanks!


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Jim GibertiRe: @Jim (off topic) FCP on IMAC
by on Feb 16, 2012 at 11:19:22 pm

[Richard Herd] "Sorry to go off topic, but Jim have you made the tutorial for "bussing" audio around FCPX, yet?
"


Unfortunately with our current schedule I haven't had any time RIchard.

I mentioned recently that I'm in the middle of doing a lot of work in both environments which means doing some audio post in X and the rest in my Digital Performer studio.

It's giving me a great opportunity to really compare 7 and X workflows.

Initial impression is: I like the ability to handle everything in one app when it's got to be done fast and doesn't have too many audio tracks that need sculpting.

On the other hand I love sitting behind a 48 track console and seeing my mix in front of me and having all my tools from MasterWorks, Waves, Focusrite etc on busses in real time.

Likewise I like working fast in the color board, but the New Magic Bullet Looks 2 has become an indispensable part of our creative process in X and 7.

But this is all for a comparative post that I'm going to write when I get all this work out.

In the meantime, if you have any specific questions regarding bussing I'd be glad to offer any insight I can.


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Richard HerdRe: @Jim (off topic) FCP on IMAC
by on Feb 17, 2012 at 3:35:04 pm

Thanks Jim!

This weekend I'll be sitting down to work on a mix for a short movie.

I've divided each scene into Compound Clips. The next step is the score, fx, foley, and dialogue mix. Normally I do this in Pro Tools, but this project is for me to learn FCPX, so I'm really trying to stay in X.

I'm sure I'll have questions.

Thanks


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sandy shapiroRe: FCP on IMAC
by on Feb 16, 2012 at 10:35:59 pm

good to know. thanks


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Walter SoykaRe: FCP on IMAC
by on Feb 17, 2012 at 2:53:33 pm

Here's a contrarian view.

Editorial apps do run nicely on new iMacs with Thunderbolt, but editorial performance is largely bandwidth-bound. After Effects may be bandwidth-bound on simple comps, but more involved comps usually become CPU-bound or RAM-bound.

I'm a heavy AE/C4D user, and for applications like those, I think workstation power is still worthwhile. See this recent Barefeats AE benchmark [link] which compares a Mac Pro with some iMacs (and keep in mind the Mac Pro was only a 6-core with 16 GB of RAM).

I'm optimistic that Apple will release another Mac Pro, but I've decided not to rely exclusively on Apple hardware and software anymore [link]. On the PC platform, there's a lot more choice: there are several quality vendors manufacturing workstations. I've been working with a Z800 provided by HP alongside my Macs here in my office. The hardware is well-designed and well-built, there are more powerful CPU and GPU configurations available than on the Mac platform, Windows 7 pretty much "just works" now, and once you're in a cross-platform app like AE, the user experience is pretty much the same.

To answer your original question, if Apple dropped the Mac Pro, I'd probably drop Apple. As long as they continue producing machines I can use for my work, I'll continue using cross-platform workflows and using the best tool for the job at hand.

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
Creative Cow Forum Host: Live & Stage Events


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sandy shapiroRe: FCP on IMAC
by on Feb 17, 2012 at 9:40:10 pm

I agree. Although I would like to stay with Apple, for the first time in 14 years I've considered a PC.


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