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FCP 6 on a Macbook Air (Mid 2011) and 27" TBD

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Christopher McDonell
FCP 6 on a Macbook Air (Mid 2011) and 27" TBD
on Apr 21, 2012 at 10:19:46 pm

Hey folks,

I thought I'd report on my success and failings with the above set up. I recently bought a Macbook Air (1.7 GHz, i5, 13") for work that does not involve editing. For that, I've been using my trusty G5 PPC and waiting relentlessly for the new Mac Pro to come out - money in hand. However, as noble as this 2004 model is, it's definitely on its last legs and I fear one of these days, I'm going to wake up to discover it has retuned to its Maker in the sky. So why not see if the Macbook Air could temporarily take over in the event of such tragedy, I thought. After finding Rosetta online, I installed FCS 2 via Remote Disc (how awesome is that?). I then picked up a refurbished Thunderbolt Display which I love, tapped my FW 800 drive into that, and voila! I'm happy to report that I can edit just fine and that it's probably a little zippier than my G5. I haven't gone back to compare render times (which I will). But my biggest problem is this: SCREEN TEARING. It's minimal in the Two Up view. But when I go full screen, it's quite noticeable and distracting. I can play 1080p Apple Trailers full screen with no tearing it all. So I've got to assume, it's not the Macbook Air and TB Display, right? It's FCP 6 working with multiple layers of HDV. Right??

Anyone else working with this kind of setup, I'd love to hear from you. And for anyone contemplating such necessity, be assured, it works! It really works!

Christopher


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Jerry Hofmann
Re: FCP 6 on a Macbook Air (Mid 2011) and 27" TBD
on Apr 22, 2012 at 3:01:12 pm

The tearing could be caused by interlaced video (1080i) being played on a progressive display (your computer monitor). That's why the Apple files play OK. They are progressive not interlaced.

Jerry

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Leia Vogelle
Re: FCP 6 on a Macbook Air (Mid 2011) and 27" TBD
on Apr 23, 2012 at 4:39:02 pm

Hi Chris,

We have similar setups...a G5 and MBA.

My G5 is playing up too...so I'm trying to get my FCS2 onto my 2011 MBA 11". Been trying for weeks!

Currently looking for Rosetta (I have a family version of Leopard but no Rosetta on there as a separate install).

Then I'll be attempting to do what you've achieved!

btw...I have a (non Apple) Thunderbolt adaptor that runs my 30" screen no problem whilst still running the laptop screen. Whether this still works fine under heavy load of video playback and FCS2 remains to be seen!

I'm waiting for the LaCie Thunderbolt I/O device to be available in London, UK, so I can hook up my SATA drive RAID. Then we'll see if this Thunderbolt tech is as amazing as they claim...

Good luck with your setup.

Leia Vogelle
London, UK


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Christopher McDonell
Re: FCP 6 on a Macbook Air (Mid 2011) and 27" TBD
on Apr 23, 2012 at 5:43:14 pm

Jerry, interesting thought, but I'm working with HDV 1080 30p. Nothing interlaced.

I have to assume it's a deficiency caused by my Macbook Air not being up to snuff to handle this task. I'm hoping others can vouch for this, 'cause I'd hate to think it's my brand spankin' new display...

Leia, I wish I knew where to direct you, but in my research I happened upon a download of Rosetta which saved me from having to find and purchase a SL disk. As for the Lacie TB drive, I too wonder if that would improve my situation... but it's another $500! Bring on the new Mac Pro is all I can say!

Chris


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Leia Vogelle
Re: FCP 6 on a Macbook Air (Mid 2011) and 27" TBD
on Apr 23, 2012 at 9:21:43 pm

Hi Chris,

I've been interwebbing this evening and I found Rosetta available.

Just finished the install of FCS2 (having chosen to not install most of the SoundTrack loops) and I've done the updates, etc.

All the FCS programmes open ok, and a quick test render on an MP4 clip within FCP was blazingly quick.

The Thunderbolt peripherals are coming down in price now. If you check out

http://www.lacie.com/uk/products/product.htm?id=10574

At £170ish...that's what I'm going to be using ASAP. I don't know whereabouts in the world you are...but the same Thunderbolt hub is $200 in the US.

It's bonkers to use a Macbook Air like this; but with STILL no news on the next MacPro...what else is a G5 owner to do? I've got 3 edit jobs coming up...and an ailing G5 plus the wunderkind MBA to do them with!

Leia Vogelle
London, UK


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Christopher McDonell
Re: FCP 6 on a Macbook Air (Mid 2011) and 27" TBD
on Apr 23, 2012 at 11:33:18 pm

Hey Leia, I'm from Canada and it's good to see someone else in the same predicament! Only difference it appears is that I have the Thunderbolt display, and that's where my only issue lies. It's either lag time or screen tearing, whatever you want to call it. But I get the occasional ripple or wave in the picture, most noticeably during pans or movement on screen. I don't need a TB hub however. That's one of the main reasons why I bolt the display, for the FW port, and accessibility to my external drive. That, and a new Mac Pro should surely be compatible with this, and then I'm sailing!

The 1TB TB Lacie Big Disk is $449 on this side of the pond. Probably similarly priced there.

Good luck with everything. And if I do any render compares between your G5 and Macbook Air, I'd be curious to know the results.

Chris


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