Future Sandy Bridge 11" MBA For HD Video Editing?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by blairh, Jun 8, 2011.

  1. blairh macrumors 68030

    blairh

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2007
    #1
    (Asking this question with the presumption that the Sandy Bridge MBA will be unveiled sometime this summer, as rumored.)

    Currently own a 13" mid-2009 MBP. I bought it in the fall of 2009 because I needed a laptop and was interested in getting into HD video at some point. I still plan on doing HD video down the road, but still have yet to do so. My MBP has been great, I've enjoyed it, but I think I really want to sell it and get an 11" MBA whenever the update occurs.

    My question is, do you think the new 11" MBA could be a viable option if I want to do HD video editing in the future?

    (And no, I do not want the 13" MBA, current or future model. If the 11" future MBA can't handle HD video editing well I'll just keep my current MBP.)
     
  2. thejadedmonkey macrumors 604

    thejadedmonkey

    Joined:
    May 28, 2005
    Location:
    Pa
    #2
    Absolutely not.

    I run a 2006 MBP, which has a CPU score that's about the same as the 13" MBA, and HD video is a pain on it. The 11" MBA would be even slower. So even if we assume a speed bump from Sandy Bridge, it'll still be slow. Final Cut X might help in this regard, but as it's not out yet, I have no idea. If Apple can make Final Cut X offload to the video card a lot of the work, then the 13" (and 11") will be better... but I still wouldn't try doing any Final Cut Studio work on them - motion, 3d graphics, etc...
     
  3. blairh thread starter macrumors 68030

    blairh

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2007
    #3
    I was referring to something like iMovie vs. Final Cut Studio. Simple home movies shot with an HD camcorder, etc.
     
  4. macjonny1 macrumors 6502a

    macjonny1

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2006
    #4
    I think it will be slow but doable. Very slow.
     
  5. Oldandintheway macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2010
    #5
    Quicktim

    I take 1080p 30fps videos with my Nikon D5100 and edit them in Quicktime Pro on my base 11" MBA. These are short videos but sometimes I add 2 or 3 together for a longer one. I have no problems on my MBA although I rarely do any extensive work with the videos. I don't use iMovie yet because I haven't needed any of it's features. The videos look and play great on the 11" screen. This is a 1.4ghz 2gb ram and 64gb HD model. I may someday upgrade the SSD with an OWC SSD but haven't needed to yet.
     
  6. nizmoz macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2008
    #6
    2006 technology vs 2010 technology. Sorry but I bet the MBA will do circles around your machine in that area.
     
  7. jclardy macrumors 68040

    jclardy

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2008
    #7
    It depends on what you mean by HD.

    If you are talking something with a low bit rate like an iPhone 4 or some kind of Flip videos then it will be fine for simple editing in iMovie.

    If you are talking about something more like HD video from a DSLR in a program like Final Cut or Premier Pro then I would not recommend it at all. It will be too slow and have way too many controls on the screen to fit on the MBA display.

    Also keep in mind the limited amount of storage space and lack of a high speed port. Of course the sandy bridge model will probably have thunderbolt, so that may be less of an issue.
     
  8. blairh thread starter macrumors 68030

    blairh

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2007
    #8
    Thanks for this. Has the little work that you've done on these videos been provided by using Quicktime Pro?
     
  9. blairh thread starter macrumors 68030

    blairh

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2007
    #9
    By HD I meant video captured by a consumer HD camcorder, probably from Canon or along those lines.
     
  10. thejadedmonkey macrumors 604

    thejadedmonkey

    Joined:
    May 28, 2005
    Location:
    Pa
    #10
    Not quite. The 11" Macbook Air's 1.4ghz CPU manages a score of 2022 in Geekbench, while my 2006 MBP gets a nice and speedy 2666. The graphics card in my laptop, the ATI x1600, is about the same speed as the 9400m, or roughly half as fast as the 320m in the current gen air, which is the same (more or less) as the Intel iSeries 3000 GPU.

    So while it may feel faster if all the OP is doing is chopping up movies filmed on his handycam and saving them to SSD, any editing that uses a CPU - color correction, layers, effects, etc - is going to be dog slow.

    To put this in perspective, the 11" Macbook Air is ~60 points faster than the PowerMac G5, from June 2004, or the same speed as a top of the line computer that's 7 years old.
     
  11. Oldandintheway macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2010
    #11
    Yes. I edit the length of the clip and sometimes combine clips. I've used iMovie in other computers to add music and use fades but now I mostly like the clips for themselves. It plays the clips from my camera beautifully. I also have a Sony camcorder that does 720 clips and they look good too. The Sandy Bridge model will only be better and 4gb might speed things up too, especially on larger files.
     
  12. blairh thread starter macrumors 68030

    blairh

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2007
    #12
    Thanks for your reply.

    Please excuse my ignorance: In what aspect specifically does the 4 GBs speed things up.
     
  13. zedsdead macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2007
    #13
    The new Air will be fine for consumer use, especially since you don't appear to be a power user. Reading clips off of the SSD will be fast, and the GPU in the Air is more than powerful enough. Upgrade to 4 gigs of RAM. The processor will be fine, but be aware that when exporting the encoding may take time.
     
  14. 42streetsdown macrumors 6502a

    42streetsdown

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2011
    Location:
    Gallifrey, 5124
    #14
    And i used to use a G5 from that time for editing HD video. Sure it'll be slower, but it's doable.
     
  15. Bomino macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2011
    #15
    ok, thats great n all, but he's asking about the sandy bridge MBA's.

    The u9400 gets a 970 in passmarks charts:
    http://www.cpubenchmark.net/cpu_lookup.php?cpu=Intel+Core2+Duo+U9400+@+1.40GHz

    and the lowest end LV sandy bridge chip, the 2537m gets a score of 2068. more than double of the u9400: http://www.cpubenchmark.net/cpu_lookup.php?cpu=Intel+Core+i5-2537M+@+1.40GHz

    (scroll down on links)

    so I'm not sure your comparison answers his question of whether the 2011 MBA's will be able to edit HD videos smoothly.
     

Share This Page