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Rookie with questions on building 1st Video editing build PC

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Rookie with questions on building 1st Video editing build PC
on Aug 29, 2005 at 4:18:52 pm

I am wanting to build a new box for video editing. I saw DIY and am thinking is this TOO Much for me. At current time, I want to put old 8mm and VCR tapes on DVD. Nothing to fancy, just save before its too late. I was also thinking about getting the Matrx X10.

Case-----ASPIRE X-Navigator w/ 500W Power Supply Model #ATXA8NW-AL/500 ------159
Power Supply------included w/ case------0
Motherboard------ASUS P5AD2 DELUXE------230
Graphics Card------PNY Quadro FX1300 128MB------590
Processor------INTEL P4 3.4GHz------280
RAM------2x1024Mb KINGSTON DDR2------624
System Drive------Qty 2 HITACHI 80GB SATA 7200 RPM------120
Video Drives - RAID 0 Stripe------Qty 2 HITACHI 160GB SATA 7200RPM------200

If I cut corners, what would I really loose. I was thinking maybe a cheaper/older ASUS. 2.4 - 2.8 P4, 2GB of 2700 RAM.

How much time is hardware rendering going to save me over software rendering.

1st 2 projects is my family and friends family 8mm tapes. Probably about 30 - 50 hours of tape.

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Matt Gray
Re: Rookie with questions on building 1st Video editing build PC
on Aug 30, 2005 at 3:36:28 pm

Ok... I might be able to help. First of all, don't cut corners on your CPU, memory or power supply. After 3 years of slowly upgrading and makeshifting my NLE rig, I finally just bought and built a new, strictly-for-editing-keep-my-4-year-old-away-from-it system. I put 6 months of in-depth research before buying (and waiting for prices to come down).

Here's what I did, where I did it and how much:

Aspire X-Navigator ATX49NW-BK/450 Black Mid Case w/450W PSU $90 @ (Here you have the same case with just a lighter PSU, which is fine because you don't want to use this one anyway. I picked this case soley for it's size and 7 internal 3.5 bays--enough to fit my 4 hard drives and a couple Ultra hard drive coolers.)

Enermax Noisetaker 600W PSU $159 @ (The price hurts but it's WORTH IT. Take your PSU very seriously and go higher-end quality, especially for an editing machine that could cost you hours and hours of work if you lose current projects due to a generic PSU death.)

ASUS P5AD2-E Premium Mobo $212 @ (GREAT Mobo! Can't say enough. )

Intel Pentium 4 650 Prescott 800MHz FSB LGA 775 3.4GHz CPU $270 @ (you'll want the most muscle you get get! This is an important factor is rendering. I wouldn't get anything under a 3GHz CPU at this point. Highly recommended for all NLE software.)

Ultra Dual Channel 2048MB PC4200 533MHz DDR2 Memory (2 X 1024) $204.99 @ (Good, solid memory. Dual Channel is excellent for this type of work. The DIMMs also came in a nice wooden box. Not very important, but nice eye candy when they arrived. Get 1GB minimum of memory! More is always better.)

Maxtor Diamondmax 10 250GB SATA-150 7200RPM hard drives (x 4) $104.99 ea. @ (I chose NOT to RAID my system. Since I have 3 external 250GB hard drives in ADDITION to my new 4 250s, I am using the new internals as a boot drive, 2 drives to store my massive music collection and the 4th internal for additional video/photo storage. Have nothing against the RAID configurations, just not the way I wanted it right now).

Sony DRU800A DVD DL writer $84.99 @ (I know this one is about $10 cheaper already. I chose this one because of it's ability to burn both + and - DL formats. Very nice burner.

Phillips DVD+DL writer (Got this one for free...always nice to have a back-up though!)

Connect 3D Radeon X850XT P 256MB GDDR3/PCIe/Dual DVI Out Video Card $349.99 @ (I did the MOST research on this particular part of the puzzle. This looked to me the best deal available in terms of GPU power, name brand quality--as this is an actual ATI product--and compatibility. EXCELLENT price.)

Creative Labs Sound Blaster Audigy 2 ZS Sound Card $93 @ (I'm sure you can find this cheaper now and I got a $30 rebate on it. I have one of these cards in my older system. It's perfect. I run the Logitech X530 speakers.)

Now, the Aspire X-Navigator case comes with 3 80mm fans (top, door and front side) and a 120mm (rear). I also included Ultra's 3.5" black hard drive coolers (2 of them from Tigerdirect @ $12.99 each). My 3.5 bays are racked like this: 1 drive, 1 cooler, 2 drives, 1 cooler, 1 drive. These are easy to install, add great cooling support and even have LEDs to light up the box. I also used rounded IDE cables for the DVD drives and the SATA connectors are very helpful in reducing size. This system is awesome and runs great with my Adobe Premiere Pro 1.5 video collection and Pinnacle Studio 9 Plus. Am also using XP Pro.

Hope this helps!

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Matt Gray
Re: Rookie with questions on building 1st Video editing build PC
on Aug 30, 2005 at 3:53:56 pm

Also just noticed that your first project is involving 30-50 full hours of video. I imagine this is raw footage that you get to sift through. To store that you'll need a good 520GB of hard drive store (and that's figuring on 40 hours of tape). It's about 13GB/hour of high quality capture--which is really the only way to go. You definitely don't want your boot drive to be a scratch disk so when you're considering hard drive storage, think in ADDITION to your C: drive. Right now, 250GB drives are at a great price and I think Newegg is running a special on 300GB Maxtore SATAs for $130 or so. Very good deal.

In "cutting corners" from what you have listed, I would go with a video card of less cost. The card I picked is still available and works like a dream. I don't know how I survived on the card that came with my old 02 Gateway. I'm sure the Quadro 1300 is great but I just haven't felt the need to go that far---and all I do all day is edit. I also wonder about your $600 memory. For 2 GB of DDR2? Is that a typo? I got my set for $204.99. And you could always go with 1GB for now, and add on later.

And do you know which program you are going to use?

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Thanks for the input
on Aug 30, 2005 at 9:07:54 pm

1. I dont know if I was going to keep all 30-50 hours on HDD at once. Maybe half then burn, then do other half.

2. Yes, $600 was typeo

3. Was thinking Adobe Premiere Pro, dont exactly know yet.

4. For the last 3 months or so I have been using my 1.6 centrino laptop w/ 1GB RAM and USB TDK capture device. Software is called showbiz, it looks a little generic, but has been working. I have been slowly taking my old 8mm and VCR tapes and putting them to dvd. I have not been editing the video much, just cleaning the start and finished parts of the tape or scenes. If I am not really trying to make a hollywood type of movie is the expensive hardware and software really worth it?

With a 2 hour 8mm tape, it takes me about 2 hours to download video, 30 minutes to edit, 2-3 hours to export to mpeg, and then about 1 hour to make dvd, for a total of about 5.5 hours.

How much faster would it be if I built the DIY machine from above and kept TDK Capture device and showbiz software?

How much faster would it be if I built the DIY machine from above and used the MATROX X10 and Adobe Premiere Pro software?

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Matt Gray
Re: Rookie with questions on building 1st Video editing build PC
on Aug 31, 2005 at 6:58:14 pm

Well... here's my humble opinion: In no way should you spend the $$$ on high end software like Premiere Pro at this point. Perhaps in the future if you feel like you're outgrowing yourself, sure. But there's no reason to drop $1500 on that stuff. My tip would be to spend $100 on Pinnacle's Studio 9 Plus. Update it with the latest patches and go to town. The interface difference between Pinnacle Studio and Adobe is night and day. Adobe is REALLY hard to learn right away. Pinnacle is very easy and user friendly. I started on Studio 7, then used 8 and 9 and upgraded to 9 plus. I've been highly succesful running my business on that. I have Adobe now but am slowly integrating it into what I do. I have $80 worth in books just to read up and study. It's not what you need for what you're doing. Pinnacle should be excellent for your purpose. I've made actual films on it.

If you're making multiple projects from your stack of tape, then sure you can segment it out like that. Create one project and when you're done, dump it and capture new footage. I was under the impression you were making one project from it all.

30 minutes to edit? Holy crap. I wish that was my workload. I'll spend an easy 160 hours on one project. It take me 30 minutes to set up the opening titles. But that's me, not the software (Pinnacle). If you run a decent 3GHz CPU with 1GB of RAM and a decent $300 video card, you might cut that time in half. Not really sure. The times you listed sound right to me for what you're working with, so anything you do now will be faster. But going the Adobe & Matrox route won't provide benefit over cost.

More later, must go.

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