Is a basic £999 iMac OK for HD Video Editing?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by jonnywright84, Dec 31, 2011.

  1. jonnywright84 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2011
    #1
    Hi there everyone,

    I've recently decided to shift from PC to an iMac for a bit of hobbyist HD video editing and wondered if Apple's basic iMac model would be up to scratch?

    I use a Panasonic HDS700 which captures AVCHD files and would like to know if these would require converting or if the Mac would recognise them straight away.

    I've read a lot of differing opinions on here so anyone who has one and can vouch for it would be massively appreciated.

    I'll more than likely be using Final Cut Pro or another similar editing suite along with the occasional bit of After Effects.

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. simsaladimbamba

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
    Location:
    located
    #2
    AVCHD material is a bit complicated, due to the camcorders having a specific structure, and you just can't copy the files and import them.
    You need to import directly from the camera and can also copy the whole card (as backup) with its entire structure to a place of your choice.
    FCP X will work with AVCHD material, but as it is highly compressed, the CPU will be used a lot. Better transcode it (FCP X will do that) to an editing format, which will result in bigger files, but the CPU will be less taxed.

    I edited 1080p footage, properly transcoded, on my 2007 iMac and 2009 MBP, both still have slower CPUs than the current iMac.


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  3. AngryRedTicTac macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2011
    #3
    Sure, the previous generation i3 3.06 is also plenty quick enough. Yes, there are faster ways to do it, but honestly having converted and edited AVCHD from my Canon on a quad G5, and then my Pro, and currently goofing around with the little iMac just to see what it'll do, it'll do you fine.

    FCPX is fantastic for use with .mts, and it's only going to get better. The only issues you'll have are with hard drive space, you'll need externals, at least FW800, with a good bit of space. If you have that or can acquire it, you are set. Pump it up to 8gb from OWC or whoever, and have at it. You can just toss in another 2x2 sticks, so it's really cheap.
     
  4. jonnywright84 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2011
    #4
    Thanks for the quick replies.

    I was going to upgrade the RAM after been put off by paying £160. Looks fairly easily from what I saw on Youtube to upgrade too.

    It is a shame about the hard drive size but I usually keep my stuff on external HDDs anyway.

    Does Final Cut Pro have an option to convert the files built in or would I need a seperate program to do it?

    Cheers again.
     
  5. AngryRedTicTac macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2011
    #5
    The RAM is super easy, 2 minutes tops.

    FCPX will take care of you conversion needs, importing is super easy and quick.
     
  6. jonnywright84 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2011
    #6
    Cheers for the info, just looking at a few options on upgrading.

    Can anyone recommend any reputable sites to buy RAM upgrades from please?

    ----------

    Also forgot to ask, what cable do you use to import the footage or could I just insert an SDC card?

    Cheers.
     
  7. simsaladimbamba

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
    Location:
    located
    #7
    Amazon or many other RAM vendors. Crucial maybe?

    You can use the SD card or you can use a USB cable with a mini USB end. Just look into the manual of the camera and what it says about transferring the footage and what interfaces it offers, which will be USB 2.0 at least.
     

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