Help for a Newbie about to dive in head first

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by wagnerjc, Nov 24, 2007.

  1. wagnerjc macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2007
    #1
    Hey All,

    I'm new to the world of Mac as well as the world of "real" video editing. I've dabbled with editing and making my own DVD's at home, and have used my 4 month old mac to do a lot of amateur video stuff since I bought it.

    I work as an attending physician at a teaching hospital in the ER. I plan to use video, photo, and audio (all to include podcasting) as an educational tool. My program is willing to foot the bill for the necessary equipment. I've not used any of the Pro level apps other than photoshop on PC. My question is what should I be looking at here from hardware up?

    I currently run a Macbook Pro and an iMac at home. Work will be picking up a mac pro as soon as I ask.

    I've been eyeing the Canon HD consumer cameras, but am wondering if the Pro level cameras are worth the price difference. I don't think I could go higher than $3,000 and most likely no higher than $2,000. They didn't blink when I submitted around a $5,000 proposal for camera and software. Any suggestions?

    So on the software side should I look at the Apple line? Or the Adobe line? Or others? As said before I'll be doing audio, video, photo. All with Podcasting and web use.

    I don't really know at this time how deep into these products I'll go, but I don't want to sell myself short and wish I had more later.

    In the end it really boils down to video camera recs and whether to go with Apple Pro-level apps or others.

    Thanks a ton,

    Jason
     
  2. ChemiosMurphy macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2007
    Location:
    Warminster, PA
    #2
    Hey, I'm a film/video major at Drexel University in Philadelphia so let me give you a hand.

    Let me just get the word Adobe out of your head for video use. Final Cut Pro will serve you well for all your video purposes. You can import practically any type of footage and export it almost any way, from DVD to h.264 for web use. Compressor is good stuff for encoding and DVD Studio Pro is VERY easy to use. So stick with Final Cut. Final Cut Studio also comes with HUGE reference manuals so that you can learn how to fully utilize FCS.

    If you do in fact get FCS, the Mac Pro will work beautifully with it. QMaster allows you to create a virtual cluster so that you can use your Quad or Octo-Core Mac for rendering processes. My advice would be to wait until MacWorld in January because that is the probable date of the release of the new Mac Pros, new processor architecture and probable Ram/HDD/GPU updates. IF you are going to go HD you should get the octo core.

    I recommend picking up a pair of Acer 22" from Newegg.com for your monitors. They're good and cheap, I love mine.

    Regarding the camera, do you need HD? HD would be nice for showing procedures with excellent clarity, BUT how are you going to present them? You’d need HDTV’s and Blu-Ray players. Blu-Ray Burner are $444 from NewEgg and the discs are $15 a pop. I’d try to stay SD if possible because podcasts have small video, like 640*480 or 320*240 so HD is overkill. I'm not sure of your application in the ER, but would a big camera be too intrusive? A Canon GL2 goes for $2K on Amazon and its great. Manual focus ring, 3ccd and it's small. However, if you are going to go the consumer route, DO NOT GET ANYTHING THAT DOES NOT HAVE 3CCDs. Cheap single CCD camcorders have HORRIBLE color reproduction.

    You also mentioned that you want to do audio. If you are trying to make instructional videos, you might as well get a nice audio setup too. For speakers, I recommend the Edirol MA-15DBK Digital Stereo Micro Monitor. I use them in my studio at work and they are great and support optical audio. For recording purposes, you can always use the mic on the camcorder and record the audio and import it, or get a Canon XL2 that has XLR inputs and get a nice balanced XLR mic and record that way. The half assed GL2 method is cheaper.

    I never really did intensive graphics work, but in DUTV (the university TV station) we use Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop.

    Ok, so here's the list of equipment you should get if you are going SD

    Camera: Canon GL2 : $1000
    Computer: Base Mac Pro: $2500
    Monitors: Acer 22"*2: $500
    Speakers: Edirol MA-15DBK Digital Stereo Micro Monitor :$180
    Editing Software: Final Cut Studio 2: $1300

    Total: $5,480

    *That is without FireWire or Optical Cables, tack on another 50 for those.
    *That's just a ballpark number, your hospital might have approved vendors and what not:apple:
     

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