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Will my Mac Pro Tower handle FCPX?

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Ned Miller
Will my Mac Pro Tower handle FCPX?
on Dec 8, 2012 at 11:04:04 pm

I would like to migrate to FCPX from my present FCP6 on OS 10.5.8 and will probably get a 27" iMac in the spring. As of now I need to limp along with my tower which is probably five years old. Here's the specs:

Model Name: Mac Pro
Model Identifier: MacPro3,1
Processor Name: Quad-Core Intel Xeon
Processor Speed: 2.8 GHz
Number Of Processors: 2
Total Number Of Cores: 8
L2 Cache (per processor): 12 MB
Memory: 6 GB
Bus Speed: 1.6 GHz
Boot ROM Version: MP31.006C.B05
SMC Version (system): 1.25f4

I don't know if I can improve the speed or memory, can I? Will this work with FCPX and/or do I need to upgrade to a newer OS?

Many thanks for your advice!

Ned Miller
Chicago Videographer
http://www.nedmiller.com
www,bizvideo.com


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Steve Connor
Re: Will my Mac Pro Tower handle FCPX?
on Dec 8, 2012 at 11:28:14 pm

[Ned Miller] "As of now I need to limp along with my tower which is probably five years old"

I have the same Mac with 16GB RAM and an ATI Radeon 4870 card, it doesn't 'limp along" it runs FCPX very well. Add some RAM and make sure you have a good graphics card and you'll be fine.

Steve Connor
'It's just my opinion, with an occasional fact thrown in for good measure"


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Ned Miller
Re: Will my Mac Pro Tower handle FCPX?
on Dec 8, 2012 at 11:34:24 pm

Hi Steve,

Should i bring it into he store and have them do it or is it a DIY project?


Thanks,

Ned Miller
Chicago Videographer
http://www.nedmiller.com
www,bizvideo.com


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Mark Dobson
Re: Will my Mac Pro Tower handle FCPX?
on Dec 9, 2012 at 8:42:10 am

[Ned Miller] "Should i bring it into he store and have them do it or is it a DIY project?
"


Unless you are very hamfisted I'd say you could add more memory and a new Graphic card yourself ( that's if you need one )

On the minimum system requirements section on the Apple FCPX Technical Specifications page they recommend an openCL-capable graphics card or Intel HD Graphics 3000 or later.

And they only recommend 6GB of RAM!

I've got a similar Mac Pro and have now installed 22GB of RAM but I'm not that sure how much it helps me.

There are loads of instructional documents and tutorials available on the net and it's good to get to know your mac.

However if you are only planning to use it for a couple of months your will be sinking cash into a soon to be redundant system.

What I would do is install FCPX on your Mac Pro as it is at the moment and see how you get on.


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Ned Miller
Re: Will my Mac Pro Tower handle FCPX?
on Dec 9, 2012 at 3:54:02 pm

Post Script: I just figured out I would need a new card. Seems around the $700 range. That plus a new OS I think I might as well buy the iMac, ugh!



Need a favor. Could you please look at these specs from my tower and tell me if this card is capable? I'm not that technical, basically a DP who produces now and then. Apple says on their website: OpenCL-capable graphics card or Intel HD Graphics 3000 or later. What is CL?

Here's what I have on my Mac:

ATI Radeon HD 2600 XT:

Chipset Model: ATI Radeon HD 2600
Type: Display
Bus: PCIe
Slot: Slot-1
PCIe Lane Width: x16
VRAM (Total): 256 MB
Vendor: ATI (0x1002)
Device ID: 0x9588
Revision ID: 0x0000
ROM Revision: 113-B1480A-252
EFI Driver Version: 01.00.252
Displays:
Cinema:
Resolution: 1680 x 1050
Depth: 32-Bit Color
Core Image: Hardware Accelerated
Mirror: Off
Online: Yes
Quartz Extreme: Supported
Rotation: Supported
Cinema HD:
Resolution: 1920 x 1200
Depth: 32-Bit Color
Core Image: Hardware Accelerated
Main Display: Yes
Mirror: Off
Online: Yes
Quartz Extreme: Supported
Rotation: Supported

Memory Slots:

ECC: Enabled

DIMM Riser B/DIMM 1:

Size: 2 GB
Type: DDR2 FB-DIMM
Speed: 800 MHz
Status: OK
Manufacturer: 0x0000
Part Number: 0x000000463732353642363145353830304600
Serial Number: 0x00000000

DIMM Riser B/DIMM 2:

Size: 2 GB
Type: DDR2 FB-DIMM
Speed: 800 MHz
Status: OK
Manufacturer: 0x0000
Part Number: 0x000000463732353642363145353830304600
Serial Number: 0x00000000

DIMM Riser A/DIMM 1:

Size: 1 GB
Type: DDR2 FB-DIMM
Speed: 800 MHz
Status: OK
Manufacturer: 0x830B
Part Number: 0x4E543147543732553850423942442D324320
Serial Number: 0x35313441

DIMM Riser A/DIMM 2:

Size: 1 GB
Type: DDR2 FB-DIMM
Speed: 800 MHz
Status: OK
Manufacturer: 0x830B
Part Number: 0x4E543147543732553850423942442D324320
Serial Number: 0x85303441

DIMM Riser B/DIMM 3:

Size: Empty
Type: Empty
Speed: Empty
Status: Empty
Manufacturer: Empty
Part Number: Empty
Serial Number: Empty

DIMM Riser B/DIMM 4:

Size: Empty
Type: Empty
Speed: Empty
Status: Empty
Manufacturer: Empty
Part Number: Empty
Serial Number: Empty

DIMM Riser A/DIMM 3:

Size: Empty
Type: Empty
Speed: Empty
Status: Empty
Manufacturer: Empty
Part Number: Empty
Serial Number: Empty

DIMM Riser A/DIMM 4:

Size: Empty
Type: Empty
Speed: Empty
Status: Empty
Manufacturer: Empty
Part Number: Empty
Serial Number: Empty

Thanks!

Ned Miller
Chicago Videographer
http://www.nedmiller.com
www,bizvideo.com


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Tony Brittan
Re: Will my Mac Pro Tower handle FCPX?
on Dec 9, 2012 at 2:28:20 pm

Check out OWC @ macsales.com and you'll find GREAT prices for your upgrades and EASY instructional videos for each. On the Mac Pro its very easy to do both things.


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Ned Miller
Re: Will my Mac Pro Tower handle FCPX?
on Dec 9, 2012 at 3:42:02 pm

Thanks for the advice. It says I need to upgrade my OS so I must wait until I am done with some of the editing projects I am in the middle of. After that I can download the trial version.

If I can get this tower to run X fairly well then I don't need to buy the 27" iMac. I presently have two large Cinema Display monitors so it would be great if I don't need a new computer.

Thanks

Ned Miller
Chicago Videographer
http://www.nedmiller.com
www,bizvideo.com


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Bob Zelin
Re: Will my Mac Pro Tower handle FCPX?
on Dec 9, 2012 at 5:20:25 pm

what crazy advice you are getting.
Leave your old hard drive alone.
Put in a new hard drive in your Mac Pro (you have 4 slots in that computer). Build an OS X Snow Leopard boot drive ($29 at the Apple store, and I am sure you can find this on ebay), and then upgrade with the APP store to OS X Mountain Lion (OS X 10.8.2). If you can't figure out how to do this, then find a 12 year old, because they all know how to use the APP store.

Once you are running OS X 10.8.2, go back to the App store and download FCP X. That's it. Now you can boot off of your existing hard drive, and continue to work, and when you want to play around, just go to System Preferences>Startup Disk, select your new boot drive with 10.8.2 on it and FCP-X, and play all you want.

Bob Zelin



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David Chai
Re: Will my Mac Pro Tower handle FCPX?
on Dec 9, 2012 at 5:32:53 pm

Your 2600xt graphics card is not supported, so you'll need to upgrade that to a better one. The mac 5770 works fine, or if you are more adventurous, you can get a PC nvidia GTX 570 or 670. Just install mountain lion first.

-----------------
David Chai
Writer . Director
http://www.davidchai.com
dc@davidchai.com
212 363 0159


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David Eaks
Re: Will my Mac Pro Tower handle FCPX?
on Dec 9, 2012 at 6:40:38 pm

I have the same Mac as well but with 16gb of OWC RAM, a Radeon 5770 and SSD boot drive. FCPX runs great.

I'm with Bob, leave your current drive alone and get a new one for playing with this new stuff. For your new Mountain Lion and FCPX drive, I recommend a 128gb Crucial M4 SSD, for around $100 (don't forget the 2.5" to 3.5" adapter) it's well worth it.


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Dave Jenkins
Re: Will my Mac Pro Tower handle FCPX?
on Dec 9, 2012 at 6:44:12 pm

I installed FCP X on a 2006 iMac and it works! (Not great, but it works) It comes up with a message and says the graphics card is not supported. I hit the button message disappears and Final Cut X launches and works. I agree with Bob, put in another hard drive and see what you think about Final Cut X before you spend any money. Play with it, if you like it then think about upgrading your tower or getting a new iMac.

Dajen Productions, Santa Barbara, CA
MacPro Two 2.66GHz Quad Core - AJA Kona LHe
FCS 3 OS X 10.7.4
FCP X, Adobe CS6, Logic Pro, Squeeze, Filemaker


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Ned Miller
Re: Will my Mac Pro Tower handle FCPX?
on Dec 9, 2012 at 7:14:37 pm

Thanks everyone for your tips. So the consensus is: With a new graphics card, start up drive and perhaps more RAM (all told approx $1000) it will run almost as well as a new iMac? If so, if I get a pro freelance installer and buy the hardware, I will save $2000! Had I pimped up an iMac and had Apple Care that would be around $3K with tax.

Thanks,

Ned Miller
Chicago Videographer
http://www.nedmiller.com
www,bizvideo.com


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Bernard Newnham
Re: Will my Mac Pro Tower handle FCPX?
on Dec 9, 2012 at 11:05:05 pm

"With a new graphics card, start up drive and perhaps more RAM (all told approx $1000) "

So what's costing $1000?

Radeon 5770 (only 3 years out of date) $220
16Gb Ram $80
2TB drive $150
OS $50

....around $500

Bernie


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Ned Miller
Re: Will my Mac Pro Tower handle FCPX?
on Dec 10, 2012 at 2:35:49 am

Well, I'm a DP not a computer geek, so I have in the budget for a tech, preferably an Apple Certified Pro, to come way out to my suburban office twice: first to analyze and order parts then a second trip to install and get everything up and humming. That's why I figured around $1K. That's still a $2K savings from a pimped out 27" iMac.

Ned Miller
Chicago Videographer
http://www.nedmiller.com
www,bizvideo.com


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Bernard Newnham
Re: Will my Mac Pro Tower handle FCPX?
on Dec 10, 2012 at 10:25:27 am

Ah well, whatever turns you on. I'm a producer/cameraman/editor (mostly retired), so I'd just buy a new model PC and PPro.

B


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Ned Miller
Re: Will my Mac Pro Tower handle FCPX?
on Dec 10, 2012 at 12:44:59 pm

I didn't know we were allowed to retire.

Ned Miller
Chicago Videographer
http://www.nedmiller.com
www,bizvideo.com


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Bernard Newnham
Re: Will my Mac Pro Tower handle FCPX?
on Dec 10, 2012 at 1:04:51 pm

It doesn't really work like that. As a freelance drama director friend said to me a few years ago "I'm being retired" - the bookings were getting fewer as people booked younger people. It's the way of things.

In the same way, it's probably time to just retire your gear, forget FCP7 (as I reluctantly did), and look at the market as a whole. Your Apple Cinemas were extremely impressive in their day, but can now be replaced with the latest monitors with much better resolution for much less money. Premiere Pro or Edius will give you an editing system which gets close to what you're used to, and a PC is endlessly upgradable for not much money. My Apple gear now sits on the floor next to me gathering dust. Sometimes I have to update FCP7 projects, and I go back to a system I loved - but it just isn't up to modern needs and that's that. Time to move on - look at the wider world.

B


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Ned Miller
Re: Will my Mac Pro Tower handle FCPX?
on Dec 10, 2012 at 4:07:25 pm

Hi Bernard,

I've always been Mac, never touched a PC so although they are cheaper I feel it's too late to transition. I am on the fence between PPro ($500 more expensive) & FCPX. The reason I am leaning towards X is I use a lot of young people (mainly for crew) and they tend to be X savvy. Also, I am a very rough, slow editor, when I have high end jobs with decent budgets I have several editors I farm it out to. So my logic is to keep it simple. However, I can't even try the trial versions until I upgrade the OS. I would like to save $2K, (who wouldn't?) but if I have to get the new iMac for $3K Apple is doing a 18 month no interest deal so that's just $166 a month.

This last week I needed some effects, mainly flares, and when I went searching I couldn't believe the vast universe of Plug Ins for X, you can buy single effects instead of packs, and that's what got me thinking about going X. I know the benefits of PPro but there is a tsunami towards X among the young pups, probably because it's only $300?

As to forced into retirement, try my technique: Grey Haired Marketing. I say "yes, you can find someone younger and cheaper but I have done what you're proposing to do many, many times before."

That's why I do a lot of CEO shoots.

Ned Miller
Chicago Videographer
http://www.nedmiller.com
www,bizvideo.com


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Tony Brittan
Re: Will my Mac Pro Tower handle FCPX?
on Dec 10, 2012 at 4:19:33 pm

I'm sure you'll get some harsh reactions to what you just said in that post. The thing is? You're right! And you know what? X is actually really VERY good! Especially with the recent updates. Many old school editors will grouse at the very thought that this "new paradigm" of editing could be used professionally but I've been using it for about 20-30% of new projects and it works great! Multi-Cam is freakin' awesome. The ability to use Motion to create custom effects, titles, and transitions is awesome as well. And you're right about plug-ins. These companies know that they're going to sell them because the software sells so well.

And guess what? People I know who are going through school for editing...they're starting to use X in their schools as well! In fact, one that I know in DC was told that was the required software for the course. If they wanted to use Avid or Premiere, they're welcomed to learn that on their own time but they need X for the class.

I say...use whatever tool works best for you and your needs. The truth is, if you can create great work...who cares what you used to do it. The old guard is pretty steadfast on the other two A's in editing but as time goes on, we'll see how that all goes. Most of the folks who are so up in arms about FCP X haven't even really tried it...or done enough with it to truly understand how it works. I was in that camp a year or so ago. But the more I use it, on a machine that's tuned for it, the more I really dig it!

Just my 2 cents.

Tony Brittan
Island Shore Productions


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Tony Brittan
Re: Will my Mac Pro Tower handle FCPX?
on Dec 10, 2012 at 4:23:48 pm

For the record...I also bought Avid MC 5.5 and have Adobe Production Premium CS6. Got them back when X came out because I was afraid. Afraid of what was, at the time, an incomplete package. I've been training on them because I want to become "NLE Agnostic". Gotta say though...I am really digging FCPX and it's much better...and complete...than Premiere. Not as clunky as Avid. Just my opinion.

I do love CS6 for After Effects, Photoshop, and other parts that I use in production but I'm not sold on PPCS6 at all.


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Tony Brittan
Re: Will my Mac Pro Tower handle FCPX?
on Dec 10, 2012 at 4:29:21 pm

Check it out...while I was typing that response to you, I got this email from a colleague who's working in a large market. He's teaching at a university and works at an ad agency. Thought you might find it interesting:

"Teaching has been a really great experience and you will be happy to know that I have been teaching FCPX as part of the syllabus. I am still very much an Adobe guy and prefer Premiere, BUT... I have found somethings I like about FCPX and will keep it as a valuable tool in my toolbox if you will. Actually, we use FCPX primarily at the ad agency I work at too. Just looking forward to each update from 10.0.5 - 10.0.6 - 10.0.7 and so on... the bugs seem to pile up but once it is all sorted out I think its a decent program. Anyways... that was my lil rant on FCPX"

So...while people may have issues, it is getting out there in the "real world" and the old school folks may want to take notice. It's just like when FCP first came out....it was considered a toy. And the people who used and loved it brought it to the forefront. We'll see where it all goes!

Tony Brittan
Island Shore Productions


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Steve Connor
Re: Will my Mac Pro Tower handle FCPX?
on Dec 10, 2012 at 1:52:33 pm

[Ned Miller] "That's still a $2K savings from a pimped out 27" iMac."

You can save that and put it towards a new MacPro when they come out later in the year!

Steve Connor
'It's just my opinion, with an occasional fact thrown in for good measure"


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Bernard Newnham
Re: Will my Mac Pro Tower handle FCPX?
on Dec 10, 2012 at 4:42:52 pm

"I've always been Mac, never touched a PC so although they are cheaper I feel it's too late to transition. "

Oh no - old age has got you! I'm 65 and I've just moved through FCP to Edius to PPro in a year. I don't really have to earn a living with this stuff any more - BBC pension - but I hate being left behind. The university where I work part time wants to run PPro summer courses, and I might well be the instructor. Having instructed for years on FCP, it means a touch of re-learning, but not much.

As for Mac to PC, or the other way, it's no more than switching from one make of car to another. In the case of moving to PC it's like abandoning your old BMW and buying a new Nissan. The new car has all the good new stuff, but isn't as prestigious as the old one. But they both drive to the shops equally well. And in the case the PC there are lots of manufacturers bringing out stuff every week, so waiting for a new model.

B


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Ned Miller
Re: Will my Mac Pro Tower handle FCPX?
on Dec 10, 2012 at 4:46:54 pm

Wow, a cameraman with a pension? In the US that would be like hen's teeth!

Ned Miller
Chicago Videographer
http://www.nedmiller.com
www,bizvideo.com


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Ned Miller
Re: Will my Mac Pro Tower handle FCPX?
on Dec 10, 2012 at 4:45:32 pm

MY THEORY:

• All young people, 100%, feel more comfortable in the Apple Universe. Probably because of their iPhone?

• Film school administrators like saving money.

I know of one exception, a good friend teaches film studies at De Paul University in Chicago and they switched to Premiere after X came out. The name Avid is synonymous with expensive, complex, very high end.

Ned Miller
Chicago Videographer
http://www.nedmiller.com
www,bizvideo.com


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Bernard Newnham
Re: Will my Mac Pro Tower handle FCPX?
on Dec 10, 2012 at 8:11:47 pm

"so waiting for a new model."

Of course, I meant 'no waiting for a new model'.

"All young people, 100%, feel more comfortable in the Apple Universe."

I don't think the young people round here think that way. Some do, of course, but by no means all - and those that do haven't yet worked out the truth of the licencing of iTunes music, unlike Bruce Willis.

At the Uni they are pretty much totally PC because they have to run a lot of applications on their network, and buying Macs is an expense too far. When FCP was good, we were working on the authorities to get some, but when FCPX came along we lost the will to keep trying and they bought CS6 instead. So did I - at the educational price - and find it only a small adjustment from FCP7. Keyboard shortcuts differ, but a bit like finding the headlamps in a rental car, no big deal. And running the PC version means that if I want to swap graphics card or switch a drive to an SSD (did both recently), its easy and cheap. People speculate endlessly on this forum about when there might be a new Mac Pro, or what it might contain, whilst the rest of us just go and buy a new motherboard. Really no big deal to have the latest if you switch from the "Apple Universe".

B

http://www.tech-ops.co.uk

Bernie


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Ned Miller
Re: Will my Mac Pro Tower handle FCPX?
on Dec 10, 2012 at 10:00:41 pm

Very interesting input on same subject at:

http://www.dvxuser.com/V6/showthread.php?298194-Will-my-Mac-Pro-Tower-handl...

Ned Miller
Chicago Videographer
http://www.nedmiller.com
www,bizvideo.com


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Shawn Miller
Re: Will my Mac Pro Tower handle FCPX?
on Dec 10, 2012 at 11:56:57 pm

[Ned Miller] "• All young people, 100%, feel more comfortable in the Apple Universe. Probably because of their iPhone?"

Not sure about this one. I think you may be leaving out a very large chunk of kids who are using Linux, Android and Windows for hacking, gaming, and creative pursuits. Drop in on nearly any 3D art forum, and you might find a world less oriented to Apple. :-)

Shawn



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Ned Miller
Re: Will my Mac Pro Tower handle FCPX?
on Dec 11, 2012 at 12:05:25 am

Yes perhaps you're right. Every time I see a twenty-something on my crew or in public they seem to have a Mac.

Ned Miller
Chicago Videographer
http://www.nedmiller.com
www,bizvideo.com


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Shawn Miller
Re: Will my Mac Pro Tower handle FCPX?
on Dec 11, 2012 at 12:57:57 am

[Ned Miller] "Yes perhaps you're right. Every time I see a twenty-something on my crew or in public they seem to have a Mac."

I think that's fair. It seems to be a matter of the circles you run in. I'm mostly exposed to technologists (IT professionals and software developers) and VFX/mograph artists, so I see a lot of diversity (OS wise).

Shawn



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John Davidson
Re: Will my Mac Pro Tower handle FCPX?
on Dec 11, 2012 at 7:37:18 pm

One caveat to that I'd throw out there Bob is that multiple OS's on the same system may interfere with media browser within FCPX. Certain things might not show up correctly in FCPX (like iPhoto videos, iTunes libraries, and Final Cut Pro SFX).

John Davidson | President / Creative Director | Magic Feather Inc.


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