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Strategy for Sharing Media Between Mac and Windows Premiere Pro

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Keith Moreau
Strategy for Sharing Media Between Mac and Windows Premiere Pro
on Jun 18, 2012 at 4:59:03 pm

I'm hoping I'm posting in the correct forum, it was either here or in the hardware forum.

I'm going to be taking the plunge and getting a fairly high end PC to augment my aging Mac Pro for Premiere Pro CS 5.5 (and probably CS 6 as soon as the kinks are worked out). Right now my online media resides on several fast eSATA RAID 5 drives, plugged into my Mac Pro through some eSATA PCI cards. It works well and I have pretty good bandwidth, from 200MBS to 250MBS using this method, I think enough speed for the type of media I use in my edits, a combination of XDCAM EX, AVCHD, Canon H.264 with perhaps 4-5 streams at once in Multicam edits.

Adding my PC to the mix will complicate things. I want to be able to access the media on my eSATA drives, which are currently formatted for Mac, using the HFS+ file system. I have heard the Mac Drive can make Windows read this filesystem well.

The issue is sharing this media on the drives fast enough for both systems to be able to edit / access them simultaneously. I do have Gigabit ethernet, but I don't think that would be fast enough, I think practically it tops out around 70MB /second. I probably need more speed.

Also the Mac can share as SMB, but the current Mac OS 10.7 doesn't seem to share SMB all that well but I have to test it with Windows. I know for my various media player boxes it doesn't work very well or at all at this point accessing my Mac 10.7 system via SMB. In addition, SMB seems to be a really slow networking protocol. I can share via AFP or NFS, and I think NFS has the speed necesary, not sure if Windows out of the box can deal with that protocol.

I know there is such a thing as 'fiber channel' and other tech to essentially create a fast network, the Mac can also network over Firewire, but I don't think that will be fast enough either. I suppose I could see if there is a faster than Gigabit ethernet protocol using Cat 6 or whatever is the latest type of ethernet cable. I'm trying to do a shortcut here and see if the vast number of people out there have done this and what they think works best.

Thanks for any and all advice here.

Regards,

-Keith


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