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I need advice on upgrading my Macbook Pro

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Fredy Schwerdtner
I need advice on upgrading my Macbook Pro
on Jan 9, 2011 at 2:44:34 am

Dear friends:
I'm in a crossroads.
The bottom line is: The HD is knocking my door and I'm trying to solve my problems.
I'm using my MacBook Pro as described on my profiles and FCS on a "Blue Screen" production that has mixed materials from Canon D5 (HD) and a Sony HDV camera.
First I captured everything to Prores 422. So far so good …..
But when I start to apply filters (Chroma Key, Color correction, Denoisers) and increasing the number of tracks, FCP start screaming asking for render. Sometimes, based on experience (not as great as some of you guys), I do things and pray to be ok after rendering some clips. But I can not live like that ! It is frustrating most of the time.
I can't increase the speed of the processors but I'm thinking to make better connections to my external drives and put more RAM.
Three things I've read here and there on internet and I would like some advices and a word if they are right or not.

1- Use a Express Card/34 with a eSata connection which is faster than FW 800.

2- Build a eSata RAID. (Which RAID would be better ?)
For that I would need an enclosure to use 4 or 5 HD that are getting dusty on a drawer. They were used only once on an old production.
Capacity- 750GB
Interface- Sata 3Gb/s
RPM- 7200
Avg.Seek- 8.9 ms
Buffer- 16MB

Does anyone know the product: OWC Mercury Elite-AL Pro Qx2 ?
Link: http://eshop.macsales.com/item/Other%20World%20Computing/MEQX2KIT0GB/

3- Now it is possible to put 6GB of RAM on MBP
In a short past, 4GB (2 x 2GB) were the most you could use on MBP but now I can see on internet, companies selling 6GB Kit (1 x 4GB + 1 x 2GB) for MBP. Does it really works ?

As buying a Mac Pro or change the processor of my Macbook Pro are out of question, would those things above help me ?
thanks fellows.
Fredy.

MacBook Pro 17"
2.5 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo
4GB 667 MHz DDR2 SDRAM
(2) External HD LaCieMac (400/800 FW and USB)with 500GB -(2) USB External HD Western Digital (in cases) with 750GB
OS X 10.6.5
Final Cut Studio "3"


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Bob Zelin
Re: I need advice on upgrading my Macbook Pro
on Jan 9, 2011 at 4:33:52 pm

all the RAID arary will do for you is give you more stroage, and double your bandwidth of your drive speed. You are probably getting about 60MB/sec on your internal drive, and will probably go to just over 100MB/sec with an external array. (you don't get that much speed out of a slot 34 adaptor on the MBP). So will it be better - sure it will, but having a MAC Pro (which you can't currently afford) is the right way to go.

At some point Fredy, you are going to have to RAISE YOUR RATES, so you can buy the gear you need to stay in business. I fully understand how expensive this stuff seems to you, but as your clients want to do more and more complex production, they must be willing to pay YOU for it, so you can afford to invest in more professional equipment.

The same drive array you are describing from OWC will perform twice as fast in a Mac Pro, because of the buss speed.

Bob Zelin



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Fredy Schwerdtner
Re: I need advice on upgrading my Macbook Pro
on Jan 9, 2011 at 6:48:36 pm

Thanks for your response Bob. I always read what you write. I always get some inspiration and sometimes, when you are a little sarcastic, you provide me a funny time …lol
I'm sure, as you said, Mac Pro is the right way to go. But I'm out of budget now. I live in a country where Macs cost more than twice comparing to US. Most of the time I have to wait for a travel to US to buy my stuffs. When I do it, I always, when I can, try to buy the top of the line of the moment and thats what I did the last time with my MBP.
If, again as you said, "So will it be better - sure it will…", will improve a little my work time, I will go for it trying to find someone to bring me those stuffs.
As I've mentioned before, I have those 5 HD kept in a drawer and using them on a good enclosure with eSata connection could also be useful in a future Mac Pro and I would be saving money instead of buying those "whole" storing solution from Sonnet, CalDigi and etc .. that already comes with their HDs.
And even when I get my Mac Pro, having the Express Card on my MBP is worth.
Moreover, upgrading my RAM from 4 to 6GB wouldn't be bad.

Greetings,
Fredy

MacBook Pro 17"
2.5 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo
4GB 667 MHz DDR2 SDRAM
(2) External HD LaCieMac (400/800 FW and USB)with 500GB -(2) USB External HD Western Digital (in cases) with 750GB
OS X 10.6.5
Final Cut Studio "3"


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