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Paul Henry
upgrade RAM or SSD?
on Dec 26, 2011 at 3:57:57 pm

Hi all

I'm just getting into video work after doing music for years, and I'm running OS 10.6.8 on a 2.4 GHZ Intel Core i5 macbook pro with a 300 GB hard drive.

I've got a (very) little bit of spare Xmas cash and I'd like to do what I can to upgrade the laptop or FCP X use. At the moment it's taking a very long time to process things.

My first thought was to upgrade the current 4GB RAM to 8 GB, but for around the same price I could also get a 64Gb SSD drive. I'm assuming the extra RAM would be helpful but not sure if it's necessarily the best way to go.

Is there anyone more knowledgeable who could give me some advice?

Thanks & merry Xmas

Paul x


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David Roth Weiss
Re: upgrade RAM or SSD?
on Dec 26, 2011 at 6:37:36 pm

The RAM won't really help, as FCP legacy isn't a big RAM hog. And, the SDD will only make your MBP boot faster. So, save your Xmas money for a rainy day.

BTW, I hope you realize that you absolutely need to have all media on a separate hard drive. If you're not aware of that, do a search and read about the subject all over this forum. Then, go out and buy yourself a firewire 800 drive with that Xmas dough.

Happy Holidays!!!

David Roth Weiss
Director/Editor/Colorist
David Weiss Productions, Inc.
Los Angeles
http://www.drwfilms.com

Don't miss my new Creative Cow Podcast: Bringing "The Whale" to the Big Screen:
http://library.creativecow.net/weiss_roth_david/Podcast-Series-2-MikeParfit...

POST-PRODUCTION WITHOUT THE USUAL INSANITY ™


Creative COW contributing editor and a forum host of the Business & Marketing and Apple Final Cut Pro forums.


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Paul Henry
Re: upgrade RAM or SSD?
on Dec 26, 2011 at 6:54:58 pm

Hi David

Big thanks for the reply. Jut to be sure: I'm running final cut X; presumably 'legacy' refers to older versions?

But to come clean, I'm currently using the internal HD to store the media on. I'll do some reading, but in brief would using Firewire 800 reduce processing time for tasks?

Thanks again!

Paul


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Jeff Meyer
Re: upgrade RAM or SSD?
on Dec 26, 2011 at 9:15:26 pm

A drive separate from the system drive is a must. Start with a firewire connected external drive.

For Final Cut X the RAM will probably be more significant than the SSD. You'll get better Final Cut X feedback in the FCX forum:
http://forums.creativecow.net/fcpxtechnique


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Paul Henry
Re: upgrade RAM or SSD?
on Dec 27, 2011 at 12:54:15 am

Thanks, I already have a USB 1 Western Digital drive, I guess I could try that for a start whilst I'm looking into the RAM stuff?


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David Roth Weiss
Re: upgrade RAM or SSD?
on Dec 26, 2011 at 9:54:08 pm

[Paul Henry] "I'm running final cut X; presumably 'legacy' refers to older versions?"

Oh, that's different Paul. X is 64-bit and a real RAM lover, so upping RAM will help.

In the future, you should ask all "X" related questions on the dedicated FCP X Forum at http://forums.creativecow.net/fcpxtechnique.

David Roth Weiss
Director/Editor/Colorist
David Weiss Productions, Inc.
Los Angeles
http://www.drwfilms.com

Don't miss my new Creative Cow Podcast: Bringing "The Whale" to the Big Screen:
http://library.creativecow.net/weiss_roth_david/Podcast-Series-2-MikeParfit...

POST-PRODUCTION WITHOUT THE USUAL INSANITY ™


Creative COW contributing editor and a forum host of the Business & Marketing and Apple Final Cut Pro forums.


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Paul Henry
Re: upgrade RAM or SSD?
on Dec 27, 2011 at 12:54:46 am

Ah right, sorry I didn't spot the separate forum. Thanks!


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David Eaks
Re: upgrade RAM or SSD?
on Dec 26, 2011 at 10:05:31 pm

FCPX could use the RAM.

Just a thought, I recently bought and installed the OWC Data Doubler in my 17" MacBook Pro 6,1 and am very happy with it so far. Both internal drives are 500GB WD Scorpio Black (WD5000bekt). It's really nice to have both the "System Drive" and "Media Drive" internal, being a laptop, it's great for portability.

Whether or not your comfortable/willing to open up your MBP is another story.

Of course I still use FW 800 drives as well, and highly recommend using one for your media drive if nothing else. I've had great experiences with several LaCie D2 Quadra's and a 4Big.


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Paul Henry
Re: upgrade RAM or SSD?
on Dec 27, 2011 at 12:57:13 am

Thanks for the suggestion David. This would involve losing my DVD drive would it? Worth thinking about. I'll need to start price checking.

Paul


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David Eaks
Re: upgrade RAM or SSD?
on Dec 27, 2011 at 2:53:08 am

Yes the OWC Data Doubler means you lose the DVD drive, you can put the super drive in a USB enclosure though. I didn't bother because I use an external LaCie bd burner already.

Another option is the MCE opti-bay which actually comes with a SuperDrive enclosure.


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Chris Tompkins
Re: upgrade RAM or SSD?
on Dec 27, 2011 at 11:30:40 am

If you go the External Hard Drive route - DO NOT use a USB drive. There is NOT enough thru-put for video editing.
Use FW or TB.

Chris Tompkins
Video Atlanta LLC


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Paul Henry
Re: upgrade RAM or SSD?
on Dec 27, 2011 at 6:36:30 pm

Hi Chris, thanks. Does that mean I'd literally be better sticking with the internal HD until I sort out a firewire drive? The only reason to use a USB would be that I already have one sitting here so it might be a small improvement for the moment?

Best

Paul


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Jeff Meyer
Re: upgrade RAM or SSD?
on Dec 27, 2011 at 9:29:54 pm

USB won't cut it for editing. USB2 might be okay for SD DV video, but USB1 won't cut it for anything other than a backup. If your external is USB1 you'll want to use the internal drive instead - which is not recommended.

Look into a firewire drive. G-Technology supports Creative Cow and makes firewire drives that don't require external power - great for portability.

Lightpeak (Thunderbolt in Apple speak) is faster than firewire, but it is in its infancy and rather costly at this point.


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Paul Henry
Re: upgrade RAM or SSD?
on Dec 27, 2011 at 10:24:49 pm

OK, thanks will do. I went ahead and bought the RAM meantime but as soon as the coffers re-fill I'll get a firewire drive.

Best

P


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Paul Henry
Re: upgrade RAM or SSD?
on Dec 27, 2011 at 6:35:54 pm

Right. Well mobility is a huge bonus for me so I'll give this some serious looking into!


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