8GB i7 iMac no better than a 2GB MBP? What gives?

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by autocol, Feb 24, 2010.

  1. autocol macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2010
    #1
    Hi everybody.

    I'm new(ish) to video editing and VERY new to Macs, so please be gentle :)


    Okay, so I have been playing with editing video with FCP on my mum's MacBook Pro, which is the bottom of the range, 13", 2.26 GHz, 2G RAM model (about 3 months old). Amazingly, it performs about as well as premiere on my quad-core, 4G RAM PC desktop machine. I was seriously impressed, and thinking "wow, Mac's are amazing!".

    Then I started to get greedy, as you do, and have just borrowed my brother's new 27" i7, 8G RAM iMac. I thought, if mum's laptop could be as good as my PC desktop, then this thing should totally rip!

    ... long story short, it doesn't.

    In fact, it doesn't seem to perform any better than the 13" MBP (other than having plenty more screen real estate of course)!!?

    Both of them play and edit XDCAM XE compressed 1080p25 footage fine.
    Both of them skip and jump on H.264 compressed 1080p60 footage. They both seem to require rendering on the same effects and so-on. There hasn't really been a single noticeable workflow improvement from using the big beast!

    Am I doing something wrong? I'm not an expert by any means, but I've ensured the sequences are set to the appropriate setting for the footage, which is about all I know I should check. Anything else I should look at?

    Thanks everyone.
    Col.
     
  2. spinnerlys Guest

    spinnerlys

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2008
    Location:
    forlod bygningen
    #2
    Rendering long pieces of whatever needs to be rendered will be shorter if the application supports multi-core and -threading.

    If not, you will not really see any improvement.

    Also editing (without the fancy effects and such things) doesn't really need a 4- or 8-core machine, even with HD material.

    If you have to calculate a lot with your computer though (rendering being one of those calculations), the more cores the better, if the software supports it.

    Also H264 encoded video is not meant for editing, thus the constant need to render everything FCP/FCE. You need to transcode the video to ProRes or AIC encoded video before you can edit without rendering.
     
  3. autocol thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2010
    #3
    Aha! You've taught me something I didn't know :)

    What's the best way to do that? Is there a batch processing method within FCP you can use?

    Thanks for your help.
     
  4. spinnerlys Guest

    spinnerlys

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2008
    Location:
    forlod bygningen
    #4
    Depending on what the source of the H264 footage is, FCE/P might do it automatically if it is a camera.

    But there is also MPEG Streamclip, which is free and allows you to batch transcode your source video to whatever format you need for FCE/P.
     
  5. autocol thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2010
    #5
    fantastic, thank you.

    i've not played with connecting the camera to FCP yet, i've only grabbed existing footage out of folders. i'll definitely try the app you suggested though, thanks.
     

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