FCE 4 / eMac? Advice

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by 92WardSenatorFE, Aug 17, 2010.

  1. 92WardSenatorFE macrumors regular

    92WardSenatorFE

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2008
    Location:
    USA
    #1
    Hi all.

    I'm a college student looking for advice on buying a (cheaper) setup to do video editing on. I'm looking into starting to do more editing and help out with various community events recording, etc and doing editing. In the past I have used my Macbook, as listed in my signature, but now starting college I want to dedicate my MacBook primarily for my studies and not have to worry about using it to capacity.

    Question:
    How well (if at all) does Final Cut Express 4 perform on an eMac G4 (1.25 GHz/ 1 GB RAM)? I know it meets the basic system requirements (not sure about graphic card but the general requirements it seems to meet).

    Background:
    I have done extensive video editing over the last 3 years, being the lead video editor for my high school's broadcasting team. As for using older macs (and taking longer to produce), I don't really have a problem with them. The typical computers we worked with were eMacs, iMacs and PowerPC Desktops (G4s and one G5). We even had two 400MHz G4 PowerMacs running OS 9.2 until last year when we finally retired those. Now, I have in the past used iMovie 6 on eMacs (1 GHz/ 512MB RAM/ 10.4) and it seemed to perform fine, however I have not used Final Cut on them. I have used older versions of Final Cut on a first generation iMac (1.8 GHz/ 1 GB RAM/ 10.4) and on a PowerPC G4 Desktop (933MHz Dual/ 1GB RAM/ 10.2) and it worked fairly decent but like said, never on an eMac. I'm not the type of person to be impatient, and the primary editing I will be doing is for DVDs (nothing extremely high quality or HD, just standard DVD playback).

    All in all, the main downfalls to the eMac in question is that it doesn't have a DVD Burner, which I assume I'd have to either upgrade or put the projects on an external hard drive and then burn them using my Macbook.

    Thanks and all advice is welcome! I know people will tell me that I can find a cheaper Intel iMac on Craigs/eBay but I am more interested in buying from a trusted source on this rather than meeting someone or trusting UPS with valuable equipment.

    Thanks!
    Jake
     
  2. al2o3cr macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2009
    #2
    What exactly are you worried about with regards to "using it to capacity"? Unless this is a seriously pimped-out eMac, you're probably still looking at needing an external drive to store a meaningful amount of raw video. Why not just skip the eMac and use the external with your MB?
     
  3. hoosker macrumors member

    hoosker

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2003
    #3
    I would not get set up in such an old machine. You don't even have a DVD burner. Yes you can use FCE on this machine but it would be slow. How big is the hard drive? What kind of video? MiniDV? Takes a lot of space. I think it would be a waste to spend money on this. My kids have done some fairly big projects using iMovie 6 on a MacMini G4 about the same speed but FCE would tax it for sure. Use your Macbook or get something newer!
     
  4. alust2013 macrumors 601

    alust2013

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2010
    Location:
    On the fence
    #4
    I used FCE on an original Mac Pro, and it took long enough to do its deal. I'd just stick with your MacBook. It would absolutely smoke a maxed out eMac. It's got a minimum of 4x the processing power, likely far more, and the only PPC machine that can touch your computer is the quad G5. I wouldn't worry about using your MacBook, they are meant to be used, and the only thing slightly likely to fail is the HDD, which could happen anyway.
     
  5. 92WardSenatorFE thread starter macrumors regular

    92WardSenatorFE

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2008
    Location:
    USA
    #5
    Sorry I didn't clarify. I already use an external hard drive for video editing, which if I had the eMac I would probably still be using it with it too.

    I'm getting the eMac for $40 dollars or cheaper, which is a significant discount compared to even G3 iMacs which still resell for about $50-75 locally. Hard drive is 40 GB, but as said I already have an external 500 GB which i've used with my Macbook. Again, newer would be ideal but I'm on a fixed budget and I'm already getting a pretty big discount on the eMac as it is.

    Yeah I know how it is, we used Final Cut Studio on our Dual 1.8 GHz G5 PowerMac in broadcasting and it did a decent job considering what we were working with (MiniDV exported video, 160 GB HDD, 1 GB RAM). Heck even as mentioned, while our PowerMac G5 tower was in the shop we were using our iMac G5 (1.6 GHz/ 512 MB RAM) as our main editing machine and it performed fine, again using Final Cut Studio. We didn't even have Intel Macs (until last year after i graduated from the school when they finally bought a MacBook Pro). The machine I used to edit on mostly was a 933Mhz G4 Quicksilver but I was using an older version of Final Cut Studio that was probably more suit for the machine.

    Again, I was just asking mainly to see if it would work. FCE4 is the only version of FC that I have copies of and I just wanted to know if it'd work or if it would really tax down the system. I understand it may not be as fast as, using an Intel Mac or even as a MacBook but then thats still considering most of my video editing experience is using the machines I've mentioned above so I'm used to editing taking time, etc.

    Thanks for the advice and if anyone still has input its more than welcome! Again, I'm not doing anything professional or using and HD cameras, just community projects and family vids.

    Jake
     
  6. seb-opp macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2008
    Location:
    London/Norwich
    #6
    Using your Macbook would be better, but you seem like you'd rather get a second machine. Maybe you could try finding a Powermac G4 tower instead? You might even find a CPU upgrade for it on the cheap.
     
  7. 92WardSenatorFE thread starter macrumors regular

    92WardSenatorFE

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2008
    Location:
    USA
    #7
    What would be the performance difference between a G4 tower and the eMac? The only thing I know is FCE requires a 1.25 GHz of faster G4.
     

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