Suggestions on gear for a video edit studio

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by Towering2valley, Jul 5, 2013.

  1. Towering2valley macrumors newbie

    Jul 5, 2013
    Hey guys,

    I'm looking for suggestions on gear for a video edit studio.

    This will be shared by a group of editors. We all edit on our own MBPs or rMBPs. I want to set up a small studio so that an individual editor can connect their MBP to an professional video monitor, speakers, maybe waveform monitor etc for finetuning, displaying work or final stage editing.

    Footage is mostly DSLR with some Red 2K. Final videos are mostly 5-20 mins. We use Avid and FCP.

    Ideally a budget of $2000-3000 for now, although i can upgrade individual components later.

    No computers or storage needed - just monitor, speakers, and any other external cards, cables etc that i might need.

    Any suggestions for gear? Anything I should be aware of? How does the external equipment connect to a MBP?

  2. Siderz macrumors 6502a

    Nov 10, 2012
    Sorry that this isn't a useful response but I often wonder how people manage to get ahold of large sums of money (~$3000) and aren't sure how to spend it correctly.
  3. Towering2valley thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 5, 2013
    It depends on how you define 'correctly'.

    I've done some research, and collected quotes from different manufacturers, all of whom claim that their product is either superior, or cheaper but equivalent to the superior brand.

    I've also spoken with a range of editors for ideas, however all of them have worked in larger studios that someone else set up, so they've rarely had to make purchase decisions themselves, and not with the most recent technology.

    This forum seems to have plenty of people who have put together their own smaller editing workstations or studios, so I thought the wisdom of the crowds might be helpful in avoiding expensive mistakes.
  4. LethalWolfe macrumors G3


    Jan 11, 2002
    Los Angeles
    That budget will get you an HD broadcast monitor from Flanders Scientific (who probably make the best quality-but-won't-break-the-bank broadcast monitors). The Flanders have built in scopes as well as audio pass through (don't know how good of quality the pass through is). I haven't used the scopes on the Flanders but the least expensive alternatives would be from Blackmagic and range between $600-$1000 (and possibly the cost of another computer monitor to display the scopes unless you have an spare laying around).

    The Blackmagic Design UltraStudio Mini Monitor is the least expensive ($145), but quality, ThunderBolt to HDSDI/HDMI converter. As the name implies it's output only so if you find yourself in need of capturing from HDSDI you'll need a different device. AJA makes a similar device called the T-Tap which is more expensive ($295) but also a little more versitale (ex. it supports up to 2k where as the Blackmagic Mini Monitor only supports up to HD).

    If the quality of the audio pass through on the Flanders' isn't good enough then you'll need to upgrade to a better device from Blackmagic such as the UltraStudio Express ($495) or AJA's iO Express ($995) that have analog audio outputs.

    I can't recommend any good audio monitors off the top of my head but I'd guess and say expect to pay at least $400 for a good set.

    $4,000 US (including tax) is probably a more realistic minium price for what you want.


    Unfortunately $3k doesn't go very far in this industry.
  5. Chad3eleven macrumors regular

    Dec 11, 2012
    Are you doing broadcast work? Perhaps you dont need a high end broadcast monitor, which will save you some cash.

    A prosumer level Panasonic plasma will work, we have 5 suites and have those, and just 2 of the suites have tv logic monitors, but we do broadcast work.

    For speakers, we use tannoy, self powered off a small yamaha mixer (which also handles play back levels for a DVD player, beta deck and digi beta deck in the room)

    The trick is getting the best connection from your macbooks to the system, which good be a thunderbolt out dock (for sdi playback) and that could handle monitors.

    Apple cinemas are nice, but pricey. Again, depending on what you do you may be able to get away with some pretty good monitors, like a set of Dells or even Asus monitors. If connecting from a laptop then you can just hook up one additional monitor, unless you have an interface (thunderbolt expansion) 2 handle additional monitors.

    heres your roundup:

    Studio audio monitors. $400-$750 a pair
    small mixing board
    thunderbolt expansion,
    Monitor, $300-$1000
    screen calibrator, like the spyder 3 or 4 pro, $150-$250.

    Depending on what work you do (broadcast, web, corporate, etc) would steer you into and maybe away from certain things.
  6. mBox macrumors 68020

    Jun 26, 2002
    Chiming in with the Flanders option.
    We have one in my work studio used with Avid, REDCineXPro, RESOLVE and FCPX.
    Since its in a controlled studio I have to say you get used to the colors and sometimes you get complacent and think its just a preview monitor.
    Well after many moons with my personal RED camera and doing basic work at home using BMD Intensity Pro card on a Mac Pro along with a Samsung 22 LCD, I finally checked out some of my R3D clips on the Flanders at work.
    Good lord I dont think I can ever go back to using my home gear :(

    Also of note, we ordered an EIZO CG276 for the Photographer.
    I will post my findings on this comparing to the Flanders LM-2461W in video studio testing.

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