Mac Mini model for Novice Video Editing

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by towboatman, Sep 11, 2013.

  1. towboatman macrumors newbie

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    Sep 11, 2013
    #1
    My wife wants to have the ability to transfer her videos off her video camera onto DVDS. She will be looking to do some basic video editing (some splicing and background music).

    Option 1: Base Model Mac Mini (i5, 4GB Mem). If this is good enough to get us through a couple years then this is my preferred option. I'd like to upgrade in a couple years anyway (maybe use this as a htpc?). I just don't want the video editing to be "not fun" because we lack the needed power.

    Option 2: Upgrade to i7 and 8 GB. If we need the extra power from the start then we'll grab this one and hold onto it for a 4-5 years.

    I don't know much (anything) about video editing requirements so any help would be appreciated. I do know that for my purposes, the mac mini is more than what i need (I'm using a 2008 MBP right now and have no issues with its power)
     
  2. opinio macrumors 65816

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    Mar 23, 2013
    #2
    Video editing is very CPU intensive. You need an i7 quad core and 8GB ram minimum.

    Having said that, the i5 is fine if you don't mind waiting a little longer for the job to finish or you process the video work over night.
     
  3. Tanax macrumors 6502a

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    Stockholm, Sweden
    #3
    You won't need an i7 for "basic video editing". It will take longer to render the videos, sure, but you'll definitely be able to have enough power to perform video editing on an i5. I think you'll notice more of an upgrade if you get more RAM instead rather than shaving off a few minutes per video-rendering.
     
  4. opinio macrumors 65816

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    Mar 23, 2013
    #4
    Video editing uses huge amounts of CPU (often 100%). When I am working on videos, my RAM is often sitting at less than 10% while the CPU is cracking along at 100% (iStat Menus).

    You have it the wrong way around.

    Also it is not a few minutes difference in rendering. It can be hours.

    See my 3rd post on this thread on the difference between an i5 (sandy) and i7 (ivy 2.6GHz):

    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1625947

    135fps on an i7 versus 54fps on an i5 on the same video files (batch).

    Also note my point on RAM usage while the CPU is running at 100% "Handbrake is taking up about 343MB of my 16 GB of RAM on the 2.6 so RAM as a factor is negligible."
     
  5. blanka macrumors 68000

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    Jul 30, 2012
    #5
    I use a mini 2011 i5 with FCPX and it works awesome. Sure, final rendering takes longer, but I don't care. You must change the drive though! Skipping through all raw files while cutting is very disk intensive, and the 5400rpm standard drive is frustrating that! I have a 256GB Samsung 830 (now replaced by the 840pro) and a 750GB Scorpio black for all the files.
     
  6. towboatman thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Sep 11, 2013
    #6
    I don't think we'll be doing enough video editing for the extra time saved to matter, and nothing else we do warrants the upgrades. I think we'll just go with the base model and upgrade two updates from now.
     
  7. Tanax macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 15, 2011
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    Stockholm, Sweden
    #7
    Never said that video editing took up lots of RAM. I said that he'll notice more of a difference in overall computer performance by upgrading the RAM instead of the CPU, especially if he'll only do basic video editing. I did basic video editing on my MBP '09 just fine..

    With that said, sure an i7 is faster but it's also more expensive.
     
  8. dylin macrumors 6502a

    dylin

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    Jun 10, 2010
    Location:
    California
    #8
    Thats a good start. Do you need it soon? Otherwise you may try and wait for the refresh for the mac minis.

    But for the most basic of editing, you will be fine with the base model. :)
     
  9. towboatman thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Sep 11, 2013
    #9
    Yes, I need it asap. That's another reason why I wanted to go with the base model now and upgrade to top of the line mac mini in a couple years (two updates from now)
     
  10. dylin macrumors 6502a

    dylin

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    Jun 10, 2010
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    California
    #10
    Alright cool. Yea its safe to go with the base model. For more saving you could also try to go for a refurbished one. Good luck with your purchase.
     
  11. EpicBlob macrumors member

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    Feb 29, 2012
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    Mid-West
    #11
    Get an External GPU for your Mac Mini. Mine paired with a 2.3ghz i7 works like a charm in Adobe Premiere.
     
  12. bumps1427 macrumors newbie

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    Sep 12, 2013
    #12
    I thought you couldn't use an external GPU with the Mac Mini?
     
  13. EpicBlob macrumors member

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    Feb 29, 2012
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    Mid-West
    #13
    So they thought :)

    I leave my e-gpu plugged into my mac mini and it works perfectly; after I edited three files.

    As fas as I can tell, all apps accept the GPU acceleration (games such as borderlands 2, adobe premiere, blender, unigine benchmark, etc.).

    I have a ViDock with a nVidia 660 inside of it and I plug it into my mac mini using a thunderbolt adapter. The cost of adding an egpu to your mac mini would be about $500 (depending on the card you get) but it essentially turns my mini into a mac pro. I'd definitely look into it.

    Edit: Oh and try editing real time in adobe premiere pro without a proper gpu. I have a 2.3ghz quad core i7 ivy bridge cpu and it stutters with basic color correction. My e-gpu lets me edit in 100% real time which is so much nicer. Render time is also cut to 1/3rd.
     
  14. bumps1427, Sep 12, 2013
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2013

    bumps1427 macrumors newbie

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    Sep 12, 2013
    #14
    So I just purchase the ViDock, whichever video card I choose, and the thunderbolt cable and im good to go? How difficult is the formatting?

    Which version of the ViDock do you use?
     
  15. opinio macrumors 65816

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    Mar 23, 2013
    #15

    What vidock has thunderbolt? Link? Do you mean Mini Display Port adapter? BIG difference.
     
  16. EpicBlob macrumors member

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    Mid-West
    #16
    Pretty much, preferably a nVidia card 4xx-7xx as those are the best supported. I used a msi 660 oc edition and didn't have to actually change anything to detect the card. If you have the money, a quadro card might be worth getting just cause it will perform so much better for video editing.

    There is a guide, I'm finishing up mine for specifically a mac mini. So if you want to wait a little bit that might be better :p

    ----------

    The sonnet echo thunderbolt/expresscard adapter. Plug in the expresscard from the ViDock into the adapter then a thunderbolt cable to the mac mini.

    ----------

    The sonnet echo thunderbolt/expresscard adapter. Plug in the expresscard from the ViDock into the adapter then a thunderbolt cable to the mac mini.
     
  17. opinio macrumors 65816

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    Mar 23, 2013
    #17
    You get all that for $500?

    T-bolt cable, sonnet adapter, express card, vidock and graphics card.

    Or am I missing something?

    10 out of 10 for the concept but it is a lot of stuff just for an external GPU.
     
  18. bumps1427 macrumors newbie

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    Sep 12, 2013
    #18
  19. EpicBlob macrumors member

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    Mid-West
    #19
    Yeah that's my video lol.

    ViDock 4= $240
    TB Cable= $30
    Sonnet Adapter= $140
    GPU= Depends, but a 660 is a very solid card and can be found for $170.
    Total= $580
    So a bit more, but it is still a $1400 system ($800 base mac mini with i7) that is very comparable to the current base mac pro. Another great thing is the size, the video is my old setup but my new one just has the mini on top on the ViDock taking up no space at all.
     
  20. EpicBlob macrumors member

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    Feb 29, 2012
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    Mid-West
    #20
    It sounds like a mouth full, but it honestly isn't too bad. You have two boxes (three if you count the adapter which is small) and they just connect to each other via one cable.

    Added a picture of my current setup (monitor is VESA mounted)
     

    Attached Files:

  21. bumps1427 macrumors newbie

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    Sep 12, 2013
    #21
    Awesome man, my Mac Mini should be here on Moday. I'm gonna start saving up for this setup, it's exactly what I need.
     
  22. EpicBlob macrumors member

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    Feb 29, 2012
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    Mid-West
    #22
    Yay! :) Yeah I'm really hoping to get the guide out soon. Also, if you can find a 570, these (5xx) are apparently better for rendering than the new 6xx cards. There's an article on it somewhere but it's pretty much because the cuda cores are bigger (or something like that).
     
  23. bumps1427 macrumors newbie

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    Sep 12, 2013
    #23
    Ya i'm looking at a few months down the road, first thing I wanna do is throw 16gb of ram in there and a SSD. Then I will upgrade to the e-gpu so hopefully by that time you have the guide out. This will be a perfect solution for doing some intensive video editing on my Mac Mini.
     
  24. EpicBlob macrumors member

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    Feb 29, 2012
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    Mid-West
    #24
    Yeah definitely better not to rush it but can't wait to hear about your finished system. And if you ever have questions I'm glad to help haha
     
  25. bumps1427 macrumors newbie

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    Sep 12, 2013
    #25
    I will 100% have questions, this is going to be my first mac computer and my first time doing upgrades to a system, i'm a total noob but I usually catch on pretty fast.
     

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