FORUMS: list search recent posts

Will this iMac be OK for FCPX Editing

COW Forums : Apple Final Cut Pro X

<< PREVIOUS   •   VIEW ALL   •   PRINT   •   NEXT >>
Ned Miller
Will this iMac be OK for FCPX Editing
on Mar 9, 2013 at 10:00:12 pm

Hi guys,

The other day some editors responded to my post as to iMac specs and I decided to compare Best Buy to the Apple store. Best Buy is a savings of $280 and much more convenient to my location but... they only have the 3.2GHz i5 and the NVIDIA card is the 675 not the 680.


So, knowing that I am not a professional editor, just a DP who sometimes produces, can I "get by" with these specs? Doing mainly corporate work and documentaries are these specs OK? I will most likely buy FCPX but may decide on Premiere. Here's the specs:

27" iMac3.2GHz Quad-core Intel Core i5, Turbo Boost up to 3.6GHz
8GB 1600MHz DDR3 SDRAM - 2x4GB
1TB Serial ATA Drive @ 7200 rpm
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 675MX 1GB GDDR5

Also, I want to be able to physically pick up my new computer at a store since I don't want the drops and bumps UPS would add.

Many thanks!

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


Return to posts index

John Davidson
Re: Will this iMac be OK for FCPX Editing
on Mar 10, 2013 at 2:30:07 am

Ned, I'm going to try to channel the spirit of Bob Zelin here.

In 2009 I got an iMac and went for all the cheap options. That iMac is now our slowest computer and is completely unusable for anything other than email and surfing. I wish I had bought all the upgrades but I thought there was no way an iMac could be a professional workstation so I went with 'good enough'.

You work in video which eats up copious amounts of storage space. Get the 3TB fusion drive - people that don't have it don't understand how solid Fusion is. Stop being scared of UPS - It's not like best buy floated the box to their store on angel wings :). You can upgrade your RAM later when you realize that your mac would run better with it - the hard drive will be stuck with you for life.

And seriously, if you got the fully loaded iMac (which I have) with all the extras (except RAM, it's overpriced), you will be able to write it off at the end of the year. It's literally the easiest and most justifiable write-off you can have. Why not swing for the fences instead of giving it to the government?

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


Return to posts index

Michael Garber
Re: Will this iMac be OK for FCPX Editing
on Mar 10, 2013 at 4:53:56 am

Get the high end iMac. You'll need the better vid card. The system will last you longer than the lower end one. Also, you'll get more resale value for it for when you decide to upgrade. Happy shopping!

Michael Garber
5th Wall - a post production company
Blog: GARBERSHOP


Return to posts index


Ned Miller
Re: Will this iMac be OK for FCPX Editing
on Mar 10, 2013 at 3:05:50 pm

Thanks Michael and John for responding,

John, I thought I would be editing to an external drive, so why get the 3TB fusion internal drive? Also, I do rough editing and give drives to my editors who are better at graphics, text, etc. I hope that is possible in FCPX? So my understanding of what you two are recommending is the highest end iMac and card, minimum ram since I can add it later on my own?

3.4GHz Quad-core Intel Core i7, Turbo Boost up to 3.9GHz
8GB 1600MHz DDR3 SDRAM - 2x4GB
3TB Fusion Drive
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680MX 2GB GDDR5
Apple Care

OK, that's $3000. The Apple Rep at Best Buy, who knows his stuff but is not an editor, felt the i5 with the 675 card and external drives would suffice. I am going to the APple Store in four hours and will place the order using the 18 months deal with a teacher's discount. Being a DP I hate spending so much money on post gear sine it takes forever to break even on it. But I see your points.

Many thanks,

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


Return to posts index

John Davidson
Re: Will this iMac be OK for FCPX Editing
on Mar 10, 2013 at 5:54:50 pm

You'll be editing to an external, but things like Photos, iTunes, and it's associated content will be internal and will fill it up faster than you expect (I've got about 1 TB of iTunes for example). You may choose to load all your DVD's into it and discard the old media (especially if you grab an Apple TV, which I suggest you do). You'll load all your CD's into it. Then scan allllll your pictures from your life to it. You'll keep that internal because it's more secure that way. All our little phones and cameras for personal use consume a surprising amount of storage space over time.
Fusion is worth it for sure for storage, and it's super fast when opening applications.

Once the sting wears off tomorrow maybe you'll get some ideas like hiring an editor friend to work for you and offering to cut your next shoot on it. That's a brand new revenue stream that could end up being a whole business for you.

If it makes you feel better, I've been barely holding myself back on ordering a second one because I love it so much. I'd really love to toss all our other macs for new iMacs just for the new display and ease of use with thunderbolt. As you say though, it IS 3k :).

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


Return to posts index

Rick Lang
Re: Will this iMac be OK for FCPX Editing
on Mar 10, 2013 at 6:34:53 pm

The upgraded machine is likely fine for FCPX but if you want to use Resolve 9 Lite, which should appeal to you since it is free, then you want to use the NVIDIA GTX 680MX card with 2GB video memory and lots more CUDA cores.

Rick Lang

iMac 27” 2.8GHz i7 16GB


Return to posts index


Tim Jones
Re: Will this iMac be OK for FCPX Editing
on Mar 10, 2013 at 3:37:13 pm

Ned, I tried one of these iMacs (we have a couple) and it is fine for what you describe. It's not a speed demon by any stretch, but it's as fast or faster than a couple of our 4-core Mac Pro 3,1 systems. Scrubbing of small clips is responsive and the audio stays synched, but exporting larger segments takes a bit longer than my fully-loaded Retina Mac Book Pro 15" to the same Thunderbolt 4 drive array. Motion is a bit of a pig because it really does depend on the graphics card for proper OpenCL offload, but it gets by for simple tasks. Compressor was about as good as on any of our other systems.

As an aside, don't even try Premiere Pro / After Effects on this model - very frustrating compared to FCP X / Motion.

Granted, it's not going to last forever as a fast machine, but as i5-based systems go, it's pretty well designed and usable. If you use a Thunderbolt-based external RAID for storage, you'll see pretty good drive speed.

The only thing that I'd change is to boost the RAM to 16 GB. It's easy to do in the new iMacs, so you don't need to buy it preconfigured from Apple with 16GB, just buy the Corsair or PNY 8GB kit. There are 4 slots in the iMac and they are easy to get to, so you just need to add 2 more 4GB sticks for a total of 16GB. I would buy them from Other World Computing rather than Best Buy unless you can find explicitly labeled 8GB 1600 SODIMMs a the Best Buy - their stock of SODIMMs is alway iffy around here.

HTH,
Tim

Tim
--
Tim Jones
CTO - TOLIS Group, Inc.
http://www.productionbackup.com
BRU ... because it's the RESTORE that matters!


Return to posts index

Nigel Beaumont
Re: Will this iMac be OK for FCPX Editing
on Mar 11, 2013 at 3:32:44 pm

Always buy the best spec you possibly can, you'll never be thinking "gee wish I'd bought a less capable machine" but that $300 saving will seem pretty small every time you're waiting for a render to complete...

Having said that, my laptop is a Macbook Air 1.6ghz i5 and I regularly use FCPX and CS6 on it. Not my weapon of choice by any means but perfectly capable.

Nigel Beaumont

Mac Pro Quad 3.0Ghz 14GB FCS 3 OSX 10.6.8/MBA 1.6Ghz 4GB FCPX OS 10.8.2



Return to posts index

Ned Miller
Re: Will this iMac be OK for FCPX Editing
on Mar 11, 2013 at 3:35:07 pm

OP here:

I just bought at the Apple Store the i7 with the 680 card and 1TB Fusion drive and they had it in stock so I can start editing today! Thanks everyone for your advice.

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


Return to posts index


John Davidson
Re: Will this iMac be OK for FCPX Editing
on Mar 12, 2013 at 6:00:18 pm

Nice! Congrats! It's pretty fast, right?

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


Return to posts index

Ned Miller
Re: Will this iMac be OK for FCPX Editing
on Mar 12, 2013 at 6:58:10 pm

Well...I just got it set up an imported a continuous 30 min clip shot on P2 at 720/30P AVCIntra 50, dropped it into the time line, and am now exporting it at SD 720 and it says it will take 2 hours. Do you think that's normal? When I change to FCPX will it be faster? I had been hoping it would just zip through it.

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


Return to posts index

John Davidson
Re: Will this iMac be OK for FCPX Editing
on Mar 12, 2013 at 8:15:43 pm

Are you in FCP7? I think X would be a bit faster than that. You could also try compressor with that.

Try downloading the free trials of x, compressor, and motion and see what happens.

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


Return to posts index


Ned Miller
Re: Will this iMac be OK for FCPX Editing
on Mar 12, 2013 at 11:00:27 pm

Hi John,

Something weird is happening: I started the export in Quick Time Conversion, by the way the media is on an external Lacie 800 firewire drive, I am not going through a hub, the progress bar was about 10% and said it would be another two hours to complete. Then I leave the house for four hours and I come back and it's at only 20% complete and says it will still be three hours! ugh. Do you think I should have dragged the entire project onto the internal fusion drive and it will be faster? There are no unnecessary programs open.

I will download the X trial but am too involved in the present jobs to try to learn X right now but perhaps that will be faster? And you are saying Compressor is faster for exporting in X and 7 as compared to Quick Time Conversion?

This is a disappointing first step with such a nice machine.

Thanks,

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


Return to posts index

Tim Jones
Re: Will this iMac be OK for FCPX Editing
on Mar 12, 2013 at 11:51:01 pm

Ned - please, please, please get your data off of that FW drive and onto something connected via Thunderbolt. It doesn't matter how fast FCP and your new iMac are if the disk is so limiting. Also, even if you can't get to a faster drive for now, make sure that you're not transcoding TO that drive while reading FROM it.

Tim
--
Tim Jones
CTO - TOLIS Group, Inc.
http://www.productionbackup.com
BRU ... because it's the RESTORE that matters!


Return to posts index

Ned Miller
Re: Will this iMac be OK for FCPX Editing
on Mar 13, 2013 at 12:07:28 am

Oh good point! Well, it's going to take a couple of clients sending me their checks before I pop for a Thunderbolt drive. I have a shelf of about 30 drives of clients' projects, both 800 and sometimes 400 FW. Are you saying that I need to transfer over to a Thunderbolt before editing?

Also, what do you mean by: make sure that you're not transcoding TO that drive while reading FROM it.

I did download the FCPX trial version, imported the P2, dropped the whole 30 minute clip into the timeline, used the Share function adn wow, it was done in about 15 minutes! Created a QT of 1.2GB.

Thanks

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


Return to posts index

<< PREVIOUS   •   VIEW ALL   •   PRINT   •   NEXT >>
© 2017 CreativeCOW.net All Rights Reserved
[TOP]