Preferred set up - Mac Mini or 27" iMac for HD Editing?

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by hoya87eagle91, Dec 29, 2009.

  1. hoya87eagle91 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2005
    #1
    How would you spend your $2000-2500 on a new / refurb desktop setup...

    ....for HD editing amateur video captured on a Canon Vixia HV30, a Flip HD and sooner or later a Canon SLR? Would you buy a maxed out Mini + high quality monitor or go for one of the 27" the iMacs?

    How would that change if on the same machine you also wanted to manipulate amateur photos in CS4 and manipulate scans of 35mm and medium format negatives and slides?

    Would $3k make a much bigger difference in performance and
    "futureproofing" if i went Mac Pro refurb?

    Thanks
     
  2. treehorn macrumors 6502

    treehorn

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2007
    #2
    Definitely go with the IMac. The graphics card is much better than the Mini, which really isn't designed for the kind of use you're wanting to put it through. The Imac is not far removed from certain levels of MacPro at this point (it's only major flaws are lack of upgrade options and the glossy monitor, if that bothers you).
     
  3. applemike macrumors 6502

    applemike

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2008
    #3
    To be honest, with that kind of money, you could buy a very powerful windows PC with a 27inch monitor, if your going to be using Adibe products, then you can also install them on windows,

    But if you are really wanting a mac, a low end mac pro or refurb pro with a 24inch monitor is probably the way forward
     
  4. 7031 macrumors 6502

    7031

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2007
    Location:
    England
    #4
    Definitely go with the 27" iMac. Also, about the Mac Pro well, currently the i5 iMac has far better graphics than the Mac Pro. If you don't believe me, go lookup a bench mark haha.

    Anyway, your best bet would definitely be the iMac for what you are planning on doing, especially since the iMac has far better graphics, and of course, the harddrive is 3.5", as opposed to the slower 2.5" harddrive found in the Mac Mini.

    Oh, and the GeForce 9400 is an integrated card, with no video RAM, as opposed to the ATi 4850 in the iMac, which in my opinion is an awesome graphics card.
     
  5. icrude macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2006
    #5
    here is my setup for shooting 720p60 and 1080p24 XDCAM EX.
    3GB ram and the tv is for acurate color correction through my mini mxo 2.
    this thing is plenty fast for what I do (weddings/sports videos, even at 60p).

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  6. hoya87eagle91 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2005
    #6
    Thanks icrude. You have a simple but effective set up.
    p.s. - was there anthing tasty in those shot glasses in the upper left corner of your desk?! ;)
     
  7. chrono1081 macrumors 604

    chrono1081

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2008
    Location:
    Isla Nublar
    #7
    +1 for the iMac.

    A 27inch screen is great screen real estate to have for editing your video. (Granted more is always better but that requires an additional montior.
     
  8. arjen92 macrumors 65816

    arjen92

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2008
    Location:
    Below sea level
    #8
    Mac mini has laptop parts, that's why it can be so small.
    iMac has "real" computer parts, because the 27" iMac is so big. (If it was smaller it would be harder to get rid of the heat).

    And as someone else said,the differences between the iMac 27" and mac pro are not so very big anymore.

    So I would say, go for the imac 27". Or perhaps better, the mac pro. I believe (I could be wrong) the iMac 27" is still dealing with some little problems (e.g. the screen flickers, youtube won't play very well).
     
  9. the5count macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2010
    #9
    I just got through researching this very question for a friend of mine who recently got a CANON hg-20 video camera and was having fits trying to edit the video on her PC. It has a P4 processor. Needless to say, the PC just doesn't have to power to handle AVCHD files. Neither does my optimized Home-built PC with a E6600 Core 2 Duo (4GB memory) with an NVIDIA GeForce 9500GT with 1GB of memory. It gags during rendering when I try to move the mouse cursor, and that includes Adobe CS4, CyberLink PowerDirector 8, Nero 9, Pinnacle 12, Roxio, and a host of other software. Yes, I can transcode to another format and do my editing, but I loose definition every conversion step.

    Do the math- you need a quad processor and a 512MB memory equipped graphics card (not built-in) to be able to scrub audio and video in real-time. The 27" iMac quad core i5 (or i7 if you can possibly afford it) is made for this work, and there is nothing in the PC world at this price-point that comes close, not to mention the "Coolness" factor. Don't get any options, as you can buy memory much cheaper than what Apple is asking. With 4 memory slots, you can load this baby up with 16 GB of memory and not break the bank, and use the built-in integrated mac software- no need to go out and spend another $3000 on software you're not sure is going to work.

    This is from someone who has worked with this stuff now since the IBM 7090 days (go Google that:))
     
  10. acearchie macrumors 68040

    acearchie

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2006
    #10
    Hate to hog the thread but I have sent you a pm about your set up!

    Thanks
     
  11. HellDiverUK macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2009
    Location:
    Belfast, UK
    #11
    I use my Mini for the odd bit of editting HD output from a Canon XH-A1 using Premier Pro CS4. It's just about OK for simple 2-5 min clips.
     
  12. martinX macrumors 6502a

    martinX

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2009
    Location:
    Australia
    #12
    Mean looking camera. I have to ask: what's "wedding/sports videos". I'm getting images of skydiving brides. Or maybe someone wearing one of these. :D
     
  13. Kallel00 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2009
    #13
    I'd say definately Imac 27" because it can handle today's software with ease, and well once it can't handle tomorrow's software properly, it still remains a kickass monitor that can be used with your future mac or PC ;)
     
  14. puckhead193 macrumors G3

    puckhead193

    Joined:
    May 25, 2004
    Location:
    NY
    #14
    question, Does your mxo 2 have max? I'm thinking of getting it when i get my new setup. I want to know if i can make a custom export with the settings my client needs for web in compressor?
     
  15. applemike macrumors 6502

    applemike

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2008
    #15
    What the hell is that camera?

    And the sporty "brides dress clothes type thing" is epic ;)
     
  16. Chris7 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2008
    Location:
    Lost in Thought
    #16
    questions

    hoya87eagle91,

    We may be able to better assist you if we knew a few things...

    You mentioned CS4. Are you using Premiere Pro? If so, are you planning on changing to a different editing program?

    Have you been using Mac for a while or coming from PC? Are you set on going with Mac, or PC's still a possibility?

    Do you plan to edit more than one stream of video at once?

    You mentioned both the Mac Mini and iMac, neither of which have more than one Fire Wire port. Do you plan on capturing video to your boot drive?

    -Chris
     
  17. icrude macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2006
    #17
    thanks for the replies. no i don't have max, not worth it. i mean it is worth it, but encoding takes forever anyways, so just live with it. my camera is a sony ex1 with a photo lens adaptor so i can add slr lenses and make my videos not look so home movie "ish". my laptop is perfect, it edits. that is all i need. the mxo 2 and the hd monitor are for color correction. inexpensive, yet 100% acceptable in a broadcast professional enviornment. no compromises. here are a few samples.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  18. JoeJITSU macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2007
    #18
    hoya87eagle91, I am in the same boat as you. I was in the process of buying the imac 3.06ghz duo core until the guys on a video editing forum said that the newer macpros and imacs WHICH are the QUADS are the only ones that would keep up with the new programs and the future programs to come. I to own a HV30 but with a 35mm DOF adapter "Handy35 V5 plus" with Canon DF lenses. I have also picked up a Kodak Zi8 (spectacular pocket HD). AFter a Wide research and numerous advice. I decided to go with the i7 PC. I will definetely make it a Hackintosh as well
     
  19. icrude macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2006
    #19
    i don't know what you guys are talking about, my laptop, LAPTOP, is 2 years old and i can edit full 1080p 35mbit hd all day long. remember, video is all about data rate. and if you have all your media on an external hard drive (which you should).....then what the heck do u need a brand new computer for? rendering? computers don't have a dedicated render card so you will always have to live with HOURS of encoding times and rendering.
     
  20. JoeJITSU macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2007
    #20
    Actually an i7 renders a full dvd (2hours) in 43 minutes. compared to hours that is extreme. That is why allot of Video editing professionals and enthusiasts were waiting for the i7 mac. I too deal allot with video editing and just trying to find the best way. I can only afford the 3.06ghz duo core 24" at the moment or go with a Brand New i7 rig that I can build myself.
     
  21. icrude macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2006
    #21
    are you in a studio that is on minute by minute deadlines? if so, sure get the latest equipment. but if that is the case, heck get an HD i/o. but to say that you need the latest equipment to edit just doesn't make sense. i say why get an imac when you shouldnt even be viewing video on that screen? you may have faster render times but if your colors aren't true and everything is inaccurate, then what's the point?
     
  22. JoeJITSU macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2007
    #22
    no studio. I'm just in between what to pick. I have $1400 to spend and have seen refurbished iMacs 24" 3.06ghz duos about that much and have seen on Craigslist macpro duos going for that much as well. Then you do the whole research thing and other video editing enthusiasts telling you to build the i7 rig. Then finding out that you have to render in final cut pro each time you want to preview your "transitions". Where in Sony Vegas you can preview without rendering. Still leaning towards an iMac
     
  23. icrude macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2006
    #23
    not always the case. there will always be updates, newer versions. sony vegas is not always like that. every project is different, every codec is different, and you shouldn't take anyone's advice over the internet. you should go to the store with a drive and test it on different machines. that is the only way to get a true answer to what you need.
     
  24. JoeJITSU macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2007
    #24
    So if you don't mind me asking. What programs do you use? Do you do this fulltime? Do you have a website with sample videos of your work? I would be quite interested since this will be a future self employment opportunity for me. Thanks icrude
     
  25. icrude macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2006
    #25
    I use final cut studio 3. final cut studio 2 is good enough for most editors. I have a few different websites but this one is one of my firsts.

    your goal should be to film a few events the best you can, create some good samples that set yourself apart, and advertise EVERYWHERE.

    www.thedigitalcurrent.com
     

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