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Processor Power Necessary for HD Video Editing

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Joshua Hansen
Processor Power Necessary for HD Video Editing
on Mar 15, 2010 at 1:52:42 pm

My old computer has died so it's time to invest in something new. Ideally I'd prefer a laptop but of course in that case I'd sacrifice processing power for mobility in relation to cost. For that reason I"m tempted to get a desktop but if I can edit HD video well enough on a MacBook Pro then I'd opt for the laptop.

So my question is how fast does the processor need to be and how much working memory will I need to edit HD video easily? I"m not looking for low end specs. Thanks for the help!

I have the newest Final Cut Studio (academic).


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christian svanes
Re: Processor Power Necessary for HD Video Editing
on Mar 15, 2010 at 3:37:12 pm

i'm currently using a Macbook Pro, and so far, i've not encountered any unusual issues with working on HD projects.

that said, my projects tend to be very short in nature, and i've only upgraded to the MBP since january.

render times have not been as fast as i would have liked, but i've been able to handle it.

one thing i am considering, however, is buying a mac mini to supplement the MBP. i'd use the mac mini as my render farm. they are fairly cheap.... i figure that while i love having the portability of the MBP, i tend never to set it to heavy renders while i'm out and about - that always happens at the office. in which case, why not have a separate machine handle that particular task?



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Sam Ellens
Re: Processor Power Necessary for HD Video Editing
on Mar 15, 2010 at 7:31:09 pm

Huh? The fastest mac mini is slower than all the MacBook pros except the absolute bottom model.


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Joshua Hansen
Re: Processor Power Necessary for HD Video Editing
on Mar 15, 2010 at 8:13:16 pm

Yeah the mac mini doesn't really seem to have the specs I need. Again, I'd prefer the portability of the macbook pro but that quad core on the MacPro is mighty tempting.


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christian svanes
Re: Processor Power Necessary for HD Video Editing
on Mar 15, 2010 at 8:53:43 pm

that's very likely true... but, when it comes to rendering and and creating large-ish video files, and only those things, i've given some thought to the idea that having a separate and cheap device that can manage that on its own, while i do other stuff with my MBP might not be a bad idea...

a colleague asked me - why do you need to be able to do everything on one machine?

and when i thought about where and when i set my machine to handle large render tasks, it occurred to me that this is not a bad question to ask.

granted, for me, speed is not always the primary concern - but then again, i'm rarely ever rendering more than 15 minutes of material for a final output...

i know a few people who use mac mini's just for this purpose, and i don't think they are crazy for doing so.


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christian svanes
Re: Processor Power Necessary for HD Video Editing
on Mar 15, 2010 at 9:13:09 pm

sorry was a bit late in responding, so that i didn't see joshua's post until after i hit "post direct."

not trying to make a sell on the mac mini...


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Sam Ellens
Re: Processor Power Necessary for HD Video Editing
on Mar 15, 2010 at 9:17:12 pm

If it helps then go for it. I'd never buy a mini though...we used 3 or 4 of them at a previous workplace for presentations and they were the most problematic computers I've ever used.


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