Where To Begin
I'm currently doing initial investigation on how to either purchase or create my own video editing system. This site has been extrememely helpful.
I'm torn between purchasing either a new computer (or even a turnkey system) or creating one from scratch. I'm comfortable inside the computer. No qualms there. I just don't know where to start. In particualr, there's such a plethora of mobos and CPUs, I don't know where to start. I think I'd like to play it "safe" and go with an Intel 3.0 Ghz or greater, but choosing a mobo is really out of my league.
So, where can I start to make a selection? I can find sites that list mobos and reviews, but there's so many of them I don't know where to turn. Is there a "selection help" feature at one of these sites I'm missing? I think I can buy towers, cards, monitors, hard drives, etc. but the mobo has me stumped.
The starting point is the digitizer/video editor, as the hardware compatibility will vary widely, dependent on your choice of digitizer and editor. For example, the Matrox RT.X100 is not compatible with Via or nVidia motherboard chipsets. Others that are more software-based almost require a dual-cpu motherboard.
Once you've decided on your digitizer/editor, your choice of motherboards, sound, and video cards may be severely limited.
Okay, that's very good info.
I am thinking about getting the Matrox RT.X100 with it's bundled software of Adobe Premier (from videoguys.com of course).
Given that, where would I start? You said that it's not compatible with the Via and nVida chipsets. Is there a place on the web that reviews/covers that kind of criteria? And still, there's a whole bunch of mobos out there.
I appreciate the help.
We featured 3 different motherboards in our DIY article. Any of the 3 will work great for you.
Jon: When it comes to motherboards the crucial factor in picking the one you want is the chipset. For this exercise I only considered chipsets that were recommended by all our vendors and that I could not find any known issues with. I came up with 3 chipsets that I liked best, the Intel E7505 & 875 and the SiS 655.
1) My dream motherboard was the Intel SE7505VB2 ($399) based on the Intel E7505 chipset. It's a Dual Xeon motherboard. Although we were only going to go with a single processor, I figured it would give us great room to grow. But it was pretty expensive and I would have to sacrifice too much in other areas to meet my budget.
2) So I focused on finding the best Intel 875 based motherboard I could. The 875 chipset looked to offer the best single processor performance and all our vendors recommend it. After a bit of research I found the Asus P4C800-E Deluxe ($178) motherboard. It's loaded with goodies like on board FireWire, SATA RAID and some very cool diagnostic software. The diagnostic software actually tells you the temperature inside the computer and if your machine is running too hot. It also tells you the CPU's temperature; it's a really nice utility.
3) Next I checked out the Gigabyte 8SQ800 ($82) which uses the SiS 655. We had heard very good reports about this motherboard from our customers, which counts a lot. It's a very nice motherboard with a good set of onboard features as well.
If you haven't read the article yet http://www.videoguys.com/DIY.html
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If you're considering a RT.X100, which I have had since it was released and personally love, then go to Matrox's website and read their tested configurations.
Gary, here's the machine I'm considering.
Is this a "Dream Machine" with the addition of the Matrox RT.X100 and Adobe Premiere Pro NLE software? I've always had good luck with IBM machines but I've never done any NLE either. Thanks.
To be honest, it's overkill and it's NOT on Matrox's validated configuration list. With the X100, most of the boost is in the X100 hardware, so a dual cpu isn't useful that often for video editing. If you're into a lot of effects that require rendering, like After Effects, then dual cpu's are useful.
Be aware that a hyperthreading Pentium4 will be a lot cheaper and effectively provide dual cpu support, as the HT P4 contains two integer units, and the math performed in video is integer math.
I strongly recommend you stick with Matrox tested configurations, which Matrox has already figured out how to make work with the X100.
Okay, I think I'm getting a picture here from the posts you guys have given me. Go with my thinking here:
It sounds like my first choice is with what VIDEO EDITING SOFTWARE I'm going to get. I'm more comfortable going with an industry leader as much as possible and it seems that Adobe Premeire is one of the leading ones ... at least for a home/semi-pro that I want to be.
Given that, then I need to strongly consider a digitizer. It seems that Adobe isn't really a real time product. So, if I want any real time editing, I need a digitzer. And since I can get Adobe products along with Matrox's RT.X100 at a seemingly sweet price from videoguys.com, all the better, right?
If I really do want Matrox's digitizer (and I think do, is there any argument for another?), then I should really rest upon Matrox's approved mobos or at least their approved systems. Since I want to build my own system, then it would be the former.
So how's my logic here? And I'm going down the correct path? I certainly appreciate John Q's and the Video Guys' help.
Can we say "Amen!"
If you're going to go RT.X100, then building a system using a motherboard that Matrox has already tested and provides the detailed configuration information is a really smart idea. Otherwise, you're into uncharted territory, which is okay as long as you understand that when you start.
Okay. It's been some time since I posted.
I think that I've setttled on ...
A) Adobe Premiere and
B) Using Matrox RT.X100
(However, I saw someone's setup using an Apple G5 and Final Cut Pro. Sweet but I guess that's too pricy for what I want to do)
Now I'm looking at motherboards. Once I get that picked, it seems everything else should fall into place ... I hope.
If I'm not mistaken, I should want to go with the best chipset that I can (and afford) using Matrox. Using their site, that seems to be the Intel 875P chipset. (I'm bypassing dual processors per videoguys suggestion since I won't be getting After Effects ... yet.)
Given that and trying to research each board, it seems that the ASUS P4C800 Deluxe seems to be a good bet. Not only did Gary like it above in a previous post, but it was also reviewed in Maximum PC and given a Kick A** of 9 (out of 10). The other 875P chipset was Intel's D875PBZ but those reviews have been lackluster.
Now a few questions from the crowd here:
a) Gary liked the Asus P4C800-E Deluxe but Matrox just recommends the P4C800 Deluxe (no -E). I can't find what the diff is? Is it still recommended by Matrox?
b) After I started looking, Matrox added the AOpen AX4C Max II. Now I can find a few reviews on the AX4C Max but not the Max II. What I can find looks good. But there also seems to be very few motherboard retailers who even carry AOpen. Should I be concerned about this? How reliable is AOpen? Should I even consider them?
I apprciate this forum for sounding out my thinking. I wonder if others go through this same thought process.