Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by nikria2000, Sep 17, 2008.

  1. nikria2000 macrumors newbie

    Sep 17, 2008
    I am moving to Mac from PC but am not sure which machine to purchase. I would prefer a notebook but want to know if a notebook can handle my video requirements and if so which is the best for me to purchase. I have over 80 hours of video that I want to edit and burn to DVD's. Once this intial project (80 hours) is complete then my video editing will be an hour or two a month. My concern is what machine will be able to efficeintly render and burn these DVD's.

    Any thoughts?
  2. AviationFan macrumors 6502a


    Jan 12, 2006
    Cedar Rapids, IA
    A notebook won't be the fastest machine to do the job, but it'll certainly do it for you. MPEG-2 encoding, which is what you need to do with your video to turn it into a DVD, is a slow process, even on high-end desktops.

    The most common bottleneck for video work with today's notebooks is the transfer speed between main memory and the internal hard drive. This makes it difficult to impossible to capture high-bitrate video, such as uncompressed HD, into notebooks. For your standard consumer cameras/formats like DV and HDV, there's no issue, though, because they compress video to a fairly low bitrate. What format is the material that you mentioned in you post?

    At any rate, get a fast and large external Firewire drive with your notebook to store the media on.

    - Martin
  3. spinnerlys Guest


    Sep 7, 2008
    forlod bygningen
    Do you mean you have 80hrs of source material, or that the finished movie(s) is/are 80hrs long (combined or not)?

    Do you have a lot of graphics effects (Motion)? If that is so, than the computer heavily relies on a discrete graphics card, even when rendering it to a finished movie/product.
    Then I would recommend the MacBook Pro

    If it is only a simple edit (dissolves, cuts, wipes), the a MacBook will suffice.

    The length of the source material doesn't count much, the size of the project does ). The more media clips (subclips, audio files, titles, ...) you have the bigger the project is, but a MacBook 2.4 GHz with 4GB RAM will handle that well.

    I recently had a project with 1000 hours of video, and a 5000 to 10000 subclips, that crippled a G5 2.5 GHz with 8GB RAM quite well.
  4. bigbossbmb macrumors 68000


    Jul 1, 2004
    Not really, Compressor encodes to MPEG2 at 4.5x-5x real time (read 32min video in about 6.5min) on my Mac Pro (Octo 2.8 using virtual cluster). A MBP will probably not get up to real time, but shouldn't be too far off.

    Well, nobody should EVER be editing media stored on their internal drive (on a laptop). If you edit video, put all your source files on a FW/eSATA external drive.

    That said, to the OP, a regular Macbook will be very close to a MBP in terms of encoding within Compressor. The only things the Macbook won't be able to do (well) are Color and Motion. If you plan to run these apps at all, go with the MBP.
  5. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Jan 5, 2006
    Redondo Beach, California
    I lot depends on what format your video is in. Is this miniDV or some high definition format. I asume SD because you are going to DVD. And then what do you mean by "edit"? Simple cuts or more complex compositing? If you are making simple cuts to miniDV then anything Apple currently sells will work fine but you will need a good size external disk drive. The faster the drive the better get FW800 if you can

    While the MB would work think about screen size. Final Cut requires a lot of screen real estate. You might want to attach a second monitor to any notebook just to get more screen space.
  6. nikria2000 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 17, 2008


    This was very helpful.

    To answer the questions:

    I will be taking video from Mini DV tape.

    I have a total of 80 to 100 hours over the past 10 years or so to get caught up on with simple transition etc. Once I am caught up I may get a little fancier.

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