Editing 1080p on high-end iMac?

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by WatchinTV, Apr 3, 2007.

  1. WatchinTV macrumors newbie

    Apr 3, 2007
    Hi, new here and looking for some answers as I am switching from Windows to OS X extremely soon.

    I am going to be upgrading my editing set-up soon and I have been keeping my eye on the iMacs. The Mac Pro is simply out of my price range at this point. I guess my main concern would be editing 1080p video. I will be acquiring a HVX-200 camera and am just not sure if the iMac can handle the resolution. My planned specs would be 24 inch LCD Screen, 2GB RAM, 2.33GHz Intel Core 2 Duo, NVIDIA GeForce 7600 GT 256MB SDRAM. This would all be edited on FCP. I usually only edit DV which is much less processor hungry so I am not sure of the requirements needed to process 1080p. Any help would be greatly appreciated. I would also prefer if the question be answered by people with similar hardware specs. Thanks!
  2. AMBVideoTransfe macrumors newbie

    Apr 3, 2007
    I highly doubt that you would be able to capture 1080P video to the iMacs hard drive. You would need an external raid to allow for faster data rate.
  3. WatchinTV thread starter macrumors newbie

    Apr 3, 2007
    Hmmm, I'll look into that.


    Do you know what the data rate is of the iMac HD?
  4. Rod Rod macrumors 68020

    Rod Rod

    Sep 21, 2003
    Las Vegas, NV
    Any current iMac could easily handle 1080p from an HVX200. Any current iMac could easily handle 1080p on its internal hard drive. However, editing from an external FireWire drive is a much better move.

    The reason any current iMac could handle the HVX200's 1080p is because the codec it uses is DVCProHD. PowerBook G4s can handle DVCProHD. Intel Macs such as the current iMacs would have no trouble at all with it.
  5. WatchinTV thread starter macrumors newbie

    Apr 3, 2007
    Ya, after doing a little more research on the subject I should be alright, like Rod Rod said. DVCProHD has a maximum bandwidth of 100Mbps, which shouldn't be a problem for modern hard drives. Thanks for you replies, guys.
  6. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Jan 5, 2006
    Redondo Beach, California
    First off the FCP user manual explains data rates and disk requirements for various formats. The book is downloadable from the Apple web site.

    If you composite together two video tracks and write the result back to disk you need 3X the data rate for simply playing back. Same goes for audio. Base the data bandwidth requirements on the number of tracks you'd use.

    I think the iMac's problem is it's limited RAM. Only 2GB (OK 3GB but that's not cost effective)
  7. WatchinTV thread starter macrumors newbie

    Apr 3, 2007

    Thanks for the advice. Never thought about it like that. Although I don't plan on doing anything too hardware intensive, like composting, etc.

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