Macbook 12" vs iMac for FCPX editing

Discussion in 'iMac' started by czerney, Feb 17, 2016.

  1. czerney macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2009
    #1
    Hi All,

    I'm currently using a macbook 12" to edit 1080p videos ~6-10min lengths. The videos are made from three cameras + 3 audio tracks recorded from a zoom h6.

    Pleased to say that the macbook can actually do it - I use an external 2TB usb3 drive via the USB-C to HDMI cable adapter so that the laptop can be powered as well while the external drive is connected.

    Probably what I find is causing the most issue is the choppy editing and the occasional beach ball if I don't wait for the background processing to complete. I notice this background editing happens once I select about 3 videos and 2 audios create a multicam clip.

    Any with that fact that I'm going to be doing 100+ multi cam and multi audio videos using FCPX and then on an ongoing basis I'm thinking an imac is going to give me a lot less headaches and waiting.

    I know that an imac will perform a heck of a lot quicker, but I'm trying to find a few benchmarks so that I can see exactly how much better performance and time savings I'm likely to see based on my editing needs, and then extrapolate what kind of imac configuration will suit me best.

    Anyone can comment from experience or can point me to this kind of benchmarks? I've had a look but understandably not a lot of comparison between a macbook 12" and imac on FCPX since macbook isn't really the tool of choice for movie editing :)
     
  2. vng01 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2015
    #2
    Good morning czerney,

    Check http://barefeats.com/ for some benchmark Results
     
  3. czerney thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2009
    #3
    Thanks vng01 - just seeing some comparisons to the older 2013 MBP my 12" is getting smashed!
     
  4. vng01 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2015
    #4
    Well when you are thinking about buying a new mashine you should decide first of all if you need/want a portable one...if Not go for an imac.

    After that Check your Budget and buy the Best mashine you can get with your Budget.

    I would like to Tell you more, the Problem is that im using my imac for music production Not for foto/Video Editing
     
  5. Fried Chicken macrumors 6502

    Fried Chicken

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2011
    #5
    LOL This Question... It's like asking what's better for towing, a Ford F350 or a Moped
     
  6. czerney thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2009
    #6
    Just a bit lol - to be honest I'm pretty surprised the macbook can actually run it at all. My needs only recently turned to video creation with the original purpose for buying the macbook solely for web and office apps and great mobility.

    But I figured at least use it to get to know FCPX while I save (or more likely borrow) for an imac.
     
  7. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #7
    the Macbook is using Intel's low power processor, its designed to not generate heat or be fast. Its going to get crushed any iMac. The dGPU in the 5k will also crush it as well
     
  8. joema2 macrumors 65816

    joema2

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2013
    #8
    I usually edit on my 2015 iMac 27, or 2015 MacBook Pro but I have edited some H264 1080p video on a 13" 2013 MacBook Air. It can do it but I wouldn't want to edit multicam on the MacBook unless using proxy mode.

    In general if you have lots of editing, a higher-end iMac 27, if not a top-spec version is the best. That said, there are a couple of things you can do now to improve your performance:

    (1) Transcode to proxy. This is a built-in feature and very easy to do, and can be done during or after import, or at any point of the project. It will greatly speed up editing on smaller machines, esp. if doing multicam.

    (2) Consider turning off background rendering. Normally you don't need this. If you do need a fully rendered timeline for adequate multicam performance, proxy is a good choice.

    Make sure your external hard drives are fast enough. Many USB 3.0 bus-powered hard drives are slower 5400 rpm units. I have some Toshiba Canvio units that are dreadfully slow. The 1TB HGST Touro S is one a much faster 7200 rpm USB 3.0 bus-powered drive: http://amzn.com/B00IVFDQ48

    Even faster than this is the 4TB Seagate Backup Plus Fast: http://amzn.com/B00HXAV0X6
     
  9. Sirmausalot macrumors 6502a

    Sirmausalot

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    Sep 1, 2007
  10. joema2 macrumors 65816

    joema2

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2013
    #10
    Initially I had the same question, but I am guessing he means 100+ pieces which each include some multicam, not a 100+ multicam piece.

    Here is a 64-tile multicam made from a 64 layer timeline, edited in FCPX. At about 1:40 they show all 64 tiles simultaneously:




    It was done on a Mac Pro -- there is no way you'd try that on a MacBook of any type.
     
  11. Sirmausalot macrumors 6502a

    Sirmausalot

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2007
    #11
    That's certainly 64 layers at some point, not sure if any of it is multicam. But yes, now I see. In answer to the OPs question, I will pretty much second what you said and also chime in

    i7 decreases encoding times through multi-threading
    FLASH NVRAM speeds up operating system and application performance
    The highest dGPU you can afford will help with playback of multiple streams and real time effects without rendering first. The more you spend, the better the performance

    You don't really need benchmarks. Most operations will be orders of magnitude better on the newer 27" iMac compared to the computer you are using. The screen size alone will increase productivity significantly. The 27" iMac with it's 5K screen is ideally suited to FCPX even in some ways that the MP is not.
     
  12. joema2 macrumors 65816

    joema2

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    Sep 3, 2013
    #12
  13. czerney thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2009
    #13
    Yep, I've essentially only got three camera angles max. I then have a zoom h6 to pull in a mono lavalier track and a stereo track from a yeti pro. I then use the muli angle editor to flip between the camera angles and audio as required.
     

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