Your advice wanted (computer for video editing)

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by 1105, Mar 10, 2006.

  1. 1105 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2006
    #1
    I have a HUGE video collection (well over 200+ vhs tapes) that I want to get on dvd's. Currently I have a 1.25ghz mac mini with the 40gb HD which is decent for small jobs, but with so many to go through, I need to cut down the process time as much as possible and it's just not going to be able to cut it.

    As a result, I am looking for something faster that will allow me to speed up the conversion process and wanted to solicit your suggestions. The main use would be standard video elements (like eyetv, imoviehd, idvd, premiere, etc).

    I already have a pc that I use everyday so it doesn't need to be a desktop unit (a laptop would be preferred as it would allow me to hook it up inches away compared to dragging cords across the room), but I also have another great PC laptop that I use everyday so this machine would basically be exclusively used for video editing. The budget is not a problem as I would be able to pick up whatever was necessary, but I just have to know that it was definitely worth the cost (ie, I'm not going to spend $1500 just to cut 10 seconds off conversion time).

    I am not real familiar on mac hardware specs and what not so hopefully you can offer your suggestions on what you think the best route to take would be. THanks!
     
  2. eXan macrumors 601

    eXan

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2005
    Location:
    Russia
    #2
    If money isnt a problem, get G5 Quad 2.5 with 1 GB RAM minimum(unless you plan to use Motion)

    But im not really familiar with such conversion process, nor im sure if apps u plan to use use all four processor cores, so I guess dual 2 or 2.3 would be nice
     
  3. EricNau Moderator emeritus

    EricNau

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2005
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #3
    If you want a notebook, the MacBook Pro is the best notebook computer Apple has (for the moment). If you wait until April 1st, that might change.
     
  4. eXan macrumors 601

    eXan

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2005
    Location:
    Russia
    #4
    If you choose any intel-based Mac, know that most pro apps (FCP, DVD Studio Pro, etc) are not Universal Binary yet, so they will run at approximately half of the original speed, if at all on those Macs
     
  5. EricNau Moderator emeritus

    EricNau

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2005
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #5
    True, some still aren't; but all Apple Pro Apps (e.g. Final Cut Studio) will be universal by the end of March.

    But you would have to buy either the latest version, or if you already have the latest PPC version, you can get a "cross grade" for $49.
     
  6. eXan macrumors 601

    eXan

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2005
    Location:
    Russia
    #6
    Thats is what I was trying to say.
     
  7. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2002
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #7
    Is all you want to do is transfer your VHS tapes to DVD? If so, why not just find a place near you to do the transfer (assuming they aren't copy righted films/tv shows) or buy a set top DVD burner?


    Lethal
     
  8. EricNau Moderator emeritus

    EricNau

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2005
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #8
    Paying someone to do it for your costs a ton!

    If you use a set top DVD burner you can't edit out unwanted scenes (easily).
     
  9. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2002
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #9
    So does doing 200+ tapes yourself unless you don't value your time. ;)

    I guess it all depends on what the OP wants to do. My GF, for example, wants to xfer some of her old VHS movies onto DVD 'cause the tape is getting rather worn out. No desire to edit out scenes in that situation so a stand alone burner would be ideal. And going straight from VHS to DVD is a helluva lot faster than going from VHS to computer to DVD.

    Again, it all depends on what the OP's specific needs are.


    Lethal
     
  10. RedTomato macrumors 68040

    RedTomato

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2005
    Location:
    .. London ..
    #10
    I don't think you need to buy a new computer.

    I've never used EyeTV, but it seems to record straight to HD at 650 MB / hour of TV.

    I would buy an external firewire 3.5'' HD drive, 300GB minimum, for about $100, and just record all your VHS tapes straight to that through the EyeTV.

    The 300GB portable drive will hold more than 400 hours, and you can carry it about and access any of it instantly on any computer.

    You'll still have the VHS tapes as backup. If you want to avoid ever having to feed 200 VHS tapes into your computer again, you can buy a second external 300GB drive, and copy the first drive over to that as backup.

    By the time you finish putting the 200 VHS tapes on the HD, BluRay / HD-DVD will probably be out :)

    you can back up to a few of these, or buy a dual layer DVD drive and burn 30 dual layer DVDs.

    I was going to say something about recording to DV quality, but I realise that it's probably not worth recording VHS to a DV-quality format.

    Hope that helps.

    .. RedTomato ..
     
  11. FF_productions macrumors 68030

    FF_productions

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2005
    Location:
    Mt. Prospect, Illinois
    #11
    I'd consider getting a 20 inch iMac G5 or an Intel iMac. Both offer amazing speeds, but lack expandability you would have with a PowerMac.
     
  12. Psychic Shopper macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2003
    Location:
    Cleveland Ohio
    #12
    standalone burner

    The quickest way to turn those VHS tapes inyo DVDs is to buy a standalone DVD recorder, plug your VCR into it and go. You can do some basic editing by hitting pause on the dvd burner, que up your tape and resume. This is the quickest, cheapest way to do this kind of thing.
     
  13. 1105 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2006
    #13
    I do have a standalone DVD recorder with a hard drive, but I want a little more control over the editing process (as well as being able to 'set it and forget it').
     
  14. RedTomato macrumors 68040

    RedTomato

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2005
    Location:
    .. London ..
    #14
    Can you clarify what equipment you already have? (apart from a Mac Mini)

    Do you actually have an EyeTV already?

    You mentioned importing into iMovie. I wouldn't do this. It will covert everything into DV quality, which will take forever for 200 tapes and is considerable overkill for a VHS source. (then when you burn it to DVD, you have to wait forever again for everything to be recompressed down to MPEG2)

    Also can you clarify what kind of editing you want to do? Is it a 'best bits' complilation or 'cut out the boring bits' or something highly intensive?

    For intensive editing, ok, Premiere or iMovie will sort you out. For anything else, why not just use QuickTime Pro? You can use it for basic cutting out clips and boring bits, and adding segments together and trimming movies. and it's only about $30 from Apple. And there'll be no need to waste endless hours waiting for recompression to happen. You can always import into imovie / idvd if you want to add titles and so on.

    Do a run through with one tape and see how it goes.

    If you don't actually have EyeTV, you can buy it - it'll do the converting to MPEG2 (DVD standard) in realtime, which is probably the best if you're not obsessed about quality.

    Or you can buy a cheap MiniDV camcorder with analogue passthrough and firewire out - hook it up to your VCR and laptop, and it will do the convertion for you. (footage will need reconverting from DV to MPEG4

    If you're looking for better quality convertion, you could buy a Canopus ADVC 110 or 300 - I've heard good things about them, and they clean up the signal internally.

    http://www.canopus.com/products/ADVC110/index.php

    Hope all this helps.

    .. RedTomato ..
     
  15. 1105 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2006
    #15
    I am just looking to clean up some half and half shows (one half on one source, the other from another source), remove commercials, segments, etc.

    The only thing I have is a 1.25ghz PPC mac mini, anything else would need to be purchased so I am definitely open to all suggestions.
     
  16. Eastend macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2004
    Location:
    Nara, Japan
    #16
    We did something like this last year on Dual 2.5 G5 with 3 Gb of Ram. We used a ADVC-300 that allowed us to correct color, sharpness, etc. Dumped into iMovie, cut some frames out and sent to iDVD. We only had about half the tapes you have around 110 tapes 2 hour average and it took 3 months. One suggestion, restart machine after each tape is completed, by that I mean from the start to the final DVD. Even with 3 Gb of Ram if we did not do that for each project there would be Page outs, even iMovie and especially iDVD are Ram hungry. If you do not have that mini maxed out on Ram it will require greater time to complete all of your tapes. We only used one pro application for sound on 2 tapes at a later date, Soundtrack Pro. We just wanted to see if we could do it without the need of expensive Pro Applications. It can be done, but the Pro Applications would have been faster and cleaner.

    Brian
     

Share This Page