Film Editing + $2K =What model?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by RubberShoes, Jul 19, 2007.

  1. RubberShoes macrumors regular

    Jun 30, 2007
    I've been thinking about Macs since July of last year, and I've been saving up for one ever since. I bought a refurbished MBP (2.16Ghz, 15") for $1600 from apple when the new SR platforms came out. After getting all excited and opening it up, I was very upset to have a silent mac (sound completely broken)
    I returned it and was very close to spending the extra 400 dollars for a new one, but now I'm having drawbacks.

    I'm buying a mac mainly for film editing with final cut studio 2, but a Mac Pro is just too much money and not really up to date for performance vs. money (putting the hardware parts together I could build a very similar system for around $2100, excluding the case, PW, and all the little extra stuff)

    Looking at the iMacs, i liked their price ranges, and using Final Cut Pro on a bigger screen (15.4" vs. 24"or even a 30") makes everything a lot bigger, easier to see, and quite frankly easier all together. But since they have not been upgraded for a very long time, I am going to wait until an update before making my decision on an iMac, or possibly a MBP.

    I'm still in school and have never owned an iMac, I use the 17" iMac G5's at school and they run FCP pretty decently, but I am looking for a decent deal and a computer that will run professional software 2 to 3 years down the road.

    So I have 2 grand in my pocket, and a goal in mind, what model would you buy for my circumstances?

  2. theheyes macrumors regular

    Mar 8, 2006
    If you can, I would wait till they bump the iMac specs. Especially if you want it to last a few years. They may even increase the screen resolution which will help your video editing.
  3. screensaver400 macrumors 6502a

    Jan 28, 2005
    If you're in college, you can get an education discount on the 24" iMac. If you had to buy today, that's what I'd recommend. Otherwise, it's tough to make a recommendation until the new ones are released (which I'd absolutely wait for). Some speculation references an iMac even larger than 24", and if there are price drops, you might consider that.
  4. MovieCutter macrumors 68040


    May 3, 2005
    Washington, DC
    Seeing as the iMacs and MBPs are about the same machine, it all comes down to where you want to edit. DO you want portability to edit in Starbucks or in the library or whatever? Get the MBP. Do you want a larger internal hard drive (all your footage should go onto an external anyway), better video card option, and a larger screen but don't mind being tied to your desk? Get an iMac. Motion 3 is likely going to run better on an iMac due to the fact that you can currently get a card almost twice as good as the one in the newest MBPs, but the next gen iMac will likely have an even more powerful card as an option.

    That being said, any MBP or Intel iMac can run Final Cut Studio beautifully, Motion and all.
  5. L3X macrumors 6502a

    Oct 18, 2006
    Chesapeake, VA
    for 2K, you can get a 2.2 MBP with an edu discount ($1800) then use the extra 200 to buy an external HD.

    You can always upgrade the memory later if you need to.
  6. roland.g macrumors 603


    Apr 11, 2005
    One mile up and soaring
    Even with your EDU discount, you will probably break $2k if you want a 24" iMac with enough RAM to run FCS well. Though you can go stock and upgrade when 2GB sticks are cheaper and your funds recover.
  7. RubberShoes thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 30, 2007
    Sadly I'm only in high school, and we don't have the education discount in our district, so i'm pretty much SOL unless I wait a year 1/2, but ive already been waiting for a year so no. As for portability and power i'm stuck in between. I own a gateway laptop right now and I like the portability, but at this point hardware performance vs. money is more important to me. I also realize adding an external monitor is another option, but I just wondered your thoughts on what the best machine would be. Preferably I would like a machine that you could actually upgrade the parts in, that's why i liked the old G5's, but a Mac Pro is too far out of my range, so getting a well built package now seems to be the best option.

    As for HDD space, I would like to be able to work on the project without an external drive, then after it has been completed, move it off of the comp's main drive and to an external. I know 120GB isn't much (especially after partitioning it for Vista/XP/Linux, whichever i choose) but I figured I could get a couple hours on there before moving to an external source.

    I plan on moving into HD video editing soon, but for now I'm only using 480p footage from some crappy miniDV camera from the school. But uncompressed HD video looks to be a possibility to me.

    oh and btw, video cards aren't too much of a problem for me, I used to play video games a lot but I've moved out of that and into more creative stuff, I would like to be able to use Maya and Motion, but those won't be the programs i'm spending most of my time in. To be honest I think the 8600GT will work for me, but I'd like to see possibly a 8800 GPU in the new iMacs.

    thanks for all your comments.
  8. Igantius macrumors 65816

    Apr 29, 2007
    Is there any reason why you want particularly want to use the internal drive? I think most people would recommend that you use an external as the scratch disk.

    Personally, I think you're being a little overly sanguine just using the internal HD for your editing, normal usage, multiple OS etc., but it's not my call.

    As to your question about which machine to get, I think you're right about waiting to see about the iMac update.
  9. RubberShoes thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 30, 2007
    Well it really depends, for now I'm most likely going to buy a macbook pro, but I'm still going to wait until the iMac updates. I feel this way because at least with a macbook pro you get the portability and the same upgrade options as the iMacs (pretty much just the RAM) but you can throw it in a bag and take it somewhere.

    As for the big screen, I guess that's my next project to save up for, I'm looking for a 24" or larger external LCD and I'll just hook it up to that for big projects.

    HDD space? I don't want to feel tide down with using an external HDD while editing on a laptop, if i need it on the field for filming I don't want to be handling around a brick, but you are right, and 120GB is not much for 2 to 3 OS's, and a crapload of uncompressed video.

    Thanks for your replies, anything else I should consider?
  10. techlover828 macrumors 68020


    Jun 28, 2007
    Why not upgrade the internal hard drive to 160 and get an external for old projects
  11. mavherzog macrumors 6502

    Jun 11, 2005
    Columbus, WI
    I'm curious as to why you returned it.

    Maybe I simply have an abnormally-outstanding Apple-Authorized Service Provider near me (well, near my home...I'm in Iraq now). But when ever I have an issue, I simply drop it off, and pick up the repaired Apple 1-2 days later. I had a DOA Mac mini show up and it never even occurred to me to go through the hassle of returning it. I simply dropped it off at my local AASP, and picked it up two days later with a new logic board installed and tested.

    I wouldn't hesitate at all to jump on a great refurb deal. If there are probs, I know I can get them quickly resolved...and at zero cost to me.
  12. RubberShoes thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 30, 2007
    I returned it simply because I shouldn't be sent a system that's obviously faulty at shipment. How the hell can't you tell that the sound doesn't work? I could have repaired it, but if I'm getting a system that's broken to begin with, I'd rather DOA it and get one that works from the beginning. But in the process I simply realized that refurbished aren't such an amazing deal. And i'm using this computer for many things that I want a system that works and I can trust a little bit.

    So instead of returning it only to be sent another refurbished one, I decided to get my money back, because who knows how many times the last owner dropped it, and really what kind of service it got from Apple before it was shipped off again. (Oh and there were some scratches and makrs all over)

    And besides, I can get a new older model for cheaper off of MacMall, but I'm going with the current generation cause I want the 8600 GPU, 2GB and the expandibility of 4GB RAM, and the LED screens.

Share This Page