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Re: Can I upgrade my Mac to edit 4k or even 1920, or is it a lost cause?

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John Rofrano
Re: Can I upgrade my Mac to edit 4k or even 1920, or is it a lost cause?
on Mar 2, 2018 at 11:38:24 pm
Last Edited By John Rofrano on Mar 3, 2018 at 12:24:05 am

[Bill Thomas] "I have an older Mac and was curious if it can even be upgraded to work with 4k (or even 1920, since even THAT format lags in Premiere Pro!). "
I edit AVCHD 1080p like butter a day long on my 2010 Mac Pro 12 Core w/24GB Memory so you shouldn't be having any problems on your 2012 Mac Pro. Mine is a 2.9Ghz as compared to your 2.4Ghz but that shouldn't make that much of a difference. You didn't say what Graphics Card you have. I have a Radeon HD 7950. A Radeon HD 5870 would be fine as well. The HD 5770 is about half the power of the HD 5870. If you have the stock graphics card that might be your problem. It is very weak by today's standards. I also added an SSD boot drive to mine. That made a huge difference in performance over a boot drive that is still an HDD.

I don't use Adobe software so this is with Final Cut Pro X so maybe you need to upgrade your software instead of your hardware but I have no problems at all editing 1080p on my 2010 Mac.
[Bill Thomas] "SInce I'm still testing, I have been using the MOV format at 100mbs, 59.94. Would the AVCHD format be better to edit with? (I read a previous post about some compressions, like H264, being awful to edit with)."
Why are you shooting 59.94 @ 100 Mbps? I would try 29.97 @ 50 Mbps and see of that edits easier. I edit 29.97 so at 59.97 you are asking your Mac to do twice the work. What are you getting for that? (besides slow editing) and is it worth it? If you're shooting Formula 1 racing I agree that 59.97 is much better but for every day shooting 29.97 has served us well for decades.
[Bill Thomas] "And since I probably know what your answer will be, and if I have to go to a new system, what would be the least expensive Mac I could get that would easily edit 1920 (and occasionally 4k) using Premier Pro CC?"
Least expensive would be to get a Used iMac from someplace reputable like OWC. Something like this: Apple 27-inch iMac with Retina 5K display for $1,579.00 USD. Any Core i5 iMac will do but a Core i7 will be even better for video editing.
[Bill Thomas] "Lastly, I've been very pleased with external USB 3, 3.5" drives instead of my old SATA RAID setup. Never any hiccups, BUT it's been for 1280x720 P2 footage. "
I edit 1080 on external USB 3.0 drive without any problems in FCP X. If you got a newer iMac you could get a Thunderbolt RAID enclosure to get better disk performance if needed.
[Bill Thomas] "EDIT: Since I prefer Premiere Pro, can you offer an argument why a PC system could be better/cheaper than a Mac? (I have had Macs forever, but I'm not married to it)."
I wouldn't wish a PC on my worst enemy. I used PC's for over 30 years and a Mac for about 5 years now and I would never go back to using a PC. Cheap PC's are more trouble than they are worth and good PC's cost as much as a Mac but are still an inferior user experience so why bother. Unless you want to learn to become a system administrator, get a Mac. Think about it... I'm still editing on an 8 year old Mac. I would never attempt to edit on an 8 year old PC if it still even worked.


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