preparing my computer for video editing

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by nbreazea, Mar 14, 2008.

  1. nbreazea macrumors newbie

    Mar 14, 2008
    i'd love some advice on hardware/software to prepare for digital video editing. i currently own an iBook G4 that I bought 2 years ago (still under warranty through November 2008) with the following specs:

    Mac OS X version 10.4.11
    Processor: 1.33 GHz PowerPC G4
    Memory: 1.5 GB DDR SDRAM
    Startup Disk: Mac Hd
    Machine model: Power Book 6, 7
    CPU type: PowerPC G4 (1.2)
    CPU speed 1.33 GHz
    L2 Cache: 512 KB
    Memory 1.5 GB
    Bus speed: 133 Mhz
    Boot ROM version 4.9.3fo

    I have an old copy of Final Cut Pro 4 that is not currently installed.
    I have 30 hours of footage recorded on a Sony digital video camera, DCR-TRV900 (recorded on mini dv's). After I finish preparing my camera log, the idea is to edit this footage into a 10 minute trailer of sorts. This will be my first foray into video editing, so I'd really appreciate a bit of advice on how to set up my system here...

    Here's the question. I'm a student (hence without much cash) and want to figure out the best way to proceed balancing cost/ease of use, etc.

    Can I do this project on my iBook? If so, what will I need to upgrade my system? External hard drive suggestions? Would you recommend I invest in different software? Any good websites you might refer me to that would help me get started with this? Or would it just be better to sell my computer and start over with a new which case, what will be sufficient (cost is really an issue for me here...)

    Any advice you might have would be greatly appreciated!
  2. killmoms macrumors 68040


    Jun 23, 2003
    Washington, DC
    I was doing DV editing on a PowerBook of similar specs for years. DV is a pretty low-demands codec. The only thing I'd recommend is an external Firewire hard drive, I've always liked Lacie's offerings. Had nothing but good luck from them.

    FCP4 will be similarly fine for DV. I think you're all set, honestly. Just grab an external hard drive to store your media and you'll be good to go.
  3. nbreazea thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 14, 2008
    thanks! which lacie hard drive would you suggest? what sorts of specs should i look for? how many gb?
  4. Richardthe4th macrumors regular

    Jan 4, 2008
    Below Sealevel

    I also think your stuff wil be more than sufficient to get you going. I have an iBook G4 and FCE2 (smaller version of FCP4) and things work out fine.

    Be carefull with firewire disk. It will be on the same port as your cam and there have been problems reported with the scratch disk on the same firewire port as the cam. I use an usb disk without problems (DV is just 3,6 Mb/s), so cam on firewire and scratch disk on usb and the program on the internal hd. This is really the most important thing, scratch disk (where you capture your movies) and the program on a different disk.

    BTW usb disks are cheaper to.

    Oh, 1 hour of (PAL) DV tape is 13 Gb disk. Official advise is to have 5 times that storage room (for rendering etc). So 30 hours is 390 Gb, and than you don't even have render etc. room. Perhaps best advice to you is to capture some tapes, edit it, save results of course, clean the hd, and capture an other part, etc. With the project file and the original tapes (save and store!!), you can always easily recapture you're work. But currently 500Gb usb disk don't cost too much, so at least one of these and than you have to do your editing in parts. or go terra ;-)

    Good luck, Richard

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