Setup for Occasionally Editing 1080p Video

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by gadgetfreak98, Jun 17, 2009.

  1. gadgetfreak98 macrumors member

    Feb 6, 2009
    Hi. I'm looking for advice as I update from my 2.5 year old iMac 2.33 24" with a NVIDIA GeForce 7600 GT card.

    My usage:

    - Lots of general computing, including many, many Safari tabs loading simultaneously

    - Relatively frequent 21-megapixel photo management and manipulation

    - Occasional (and hopefully more frequent) 1080p video editing from my Canon 5D Mark II (my iMac chokes on this video content)

    - Other digital asset management (iTunes, video encoding my transfer from Tivo to iPod, etc.)

    Initial plans: First, I had planned to get the 3.06 iMac with the ATI 8450. Given RAM is crazy expensive in this route, I was concerned that if I needed more than 4GB, I wouldn't be getting my money's worth and would be stuck with a non-upgradable setup

    Revised plan: Spend more to get more flexibility and capability to grow -- e.g., Mac Pro. Here is the configuration I was considering:

    - 2.66 8-core (sacrifice clock speed for cores, given GCD in Snow Leopard is coming, more RAM slots for more cost effective upgrading)

    - EVGA GTX 285 video card (not too much beyond ATI card, but a lot more native capability, even if not currently fully exploited)

    - 30" ACD monitor (like the screen real estate and EVGA doesn't work with 24" LED)

    Questions for all of you:

    1. Would top end iMac be good enough? Would it handle 1080p in FCE cleanly?

    2. Is the Mac Pro just way overkill? I do like the flex to upgrade and tinker

    3. If I keep Mac Pro, should I be concerned about the 30" ACD being a 5-year old design (forever in computing!!!)?

    4. Connected to #3, is the EVGA too much for what I need? Should I get the ATI 8470 and then have the flex to switch to Mini Display Port?

    Thanks for the thoughts!!!
  2. Vol7ron macrumors 6502


    Jun 11, 2009
    Derry, NH
    If you are going to be hopefully doing video editing in 1080p from what you said, then i would definitely go with the mac pro. Having that much power for whatever video editing program you use will never be overkill. The 30 ACD should work fine without a problem. The video card is what drives the display and today's video cards can easily render the desktop for that display. Do not forget that when snow leopard comes out that it will take advantage of more powerful video cards through opencl support. When it comes to video editing, nothing is too powerful...especially if you want to do more and more of it.
  3. Demosthenes X macrumors 68000

    Demosthenes X

    Oct 21, 2008
    Skip the Apple display in favour of something from Dell or Samsung. Better value and newer designs.
  4. gadgetfreak98 thread starter macrumors member

    Feb 6, 2009
    Thank you both for the input.

    Vol7ron: My gut agrees with you that I may as well over myself overhead to continue to do more and more editing work as time allows. I'm sure I will end up not doing it if I feel hamstrung by the technology I have.

    Demosthenes: Any particular models from Dell or Samsung you suggest? I hear the Dell 3007 vintage was the one to have from the Dell side. Curious to get your suggestions. Also, agreed they are newer designs and cheaper, but do you think they are technically better, and if so why? I got a good deal on the ACD, so I'm mostly focused on technology and quality.

    Do people like the 24" LED, BTW? I'm drawn to the LED backlighting, but am mixed on the glossy. I also light the 30" screen real estate and tighter dot pitch. Curious to hear from owners of the 30" if they are comfortable with it for regular smaller-font text use, given the matte screen seems to almost blur the image if you look closely (maybe I was looking too closely?)

    Thanks again.

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