Switching to a 2009 MAc pro from PC for Video/photo editing a good idea?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by morphin1, Jul 3, 2009.

  1. morphin1 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2009
    Location:
    India
    #1
    Hi all,
    I am new and have been reading the forums for the last few days.
    I have a 5d mkII and would like to edit Videos/Photo's and probably do some animation using AE.
    Choice of software will either be Adobe production premium pro or FCS.
    Currently I have a 2008 Quad core extreme,Vista 32bit,4gb DDR3 1666,raptor 150 gb hdd's,etc etc.
    My PC and demo CS4 hangs a lot the moment i start heavy editing or adding many layers.The scratch disk is a dedicated 500gb drive.

    Now I am thinking of switching to MAC for a smoother time. Am hoping that OS X will do a better job at staying alive.
    Question is:
    A.) Should I get a mac pro 2.66ghz quad or 2.26 Octa and will these suffice for work in After effects,etc?
    B.) Do Adobe and FCS make use of the excess RAM?(is there a point in buying 16gb ram for the quad machine)?
    C.) What software would you guys recommend for video editing? FCS or Adobe?
    D.) Will snow leopard improve the performance of 2.26 Octa over the Quad 2.66?
    E.)Finally will mac OS be faster/better than Vista or Windows 7 for the above requirement?
    Thanks
     
  2. DELTAsnake macrumors 6502

    DELTAsnake

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2008
    Location:
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    #2
    Mac's are better for video and photo editing than PC's. Mac Pro's and Final Cut are used by all the major movie studios for a reason. Best software, best hardware. Everyone here will tell you that, even someone like me who likes Windows over OSX.

    1) If your budget allows it get the octo Mac, more cores = less rendering time. Even with the lower clock speed the extra cores are the way to go.

    2) Any 64 bit app can use the whole 16gb of ram in a Mac Pro. Last I heard Adobe is still 32 bit but Final Cut is 64 bit.

    3) Final Cut is what all the major Hollywood studios use. It's the industry standard.

    4) Ghz are not everything, the number of cores matter too. A 8 core Mac Pro is about as fast a computer as you can get without overclocking and water cooling.

    5) If what Apple claims is true than Snow Leopard will improve performance over Leopard. And it dosn't matter between Windows and OSX because as a video editor you should be using a Mac Pro and Final Cut, it's the gold standard for the film industry.
     
  3. giffut macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2003
    Location:
    Germany
    #3
    Well, ...

    ... somewhat tricky. Your PC might run much better would you be using Vista 64Bit - this releaves you from your current 3.25GB RAM limit and you could maximize your PC´s RAM slots. At least 8GB is recommendable for Photoshop use. The complete Adobe CS 4 Windows suite is already 64 Bit native - Final Cut Pro, e.g., is still 32Bit and prone for a severe update regarding memory managment. You should wait this out. Especially if you plan to deal with Bluray based movies - your camera very likely produces you native HD video - the Adobe suite has slightly the edge at the moment, better so Sony Vegas, e.g.. Adapt your workflow to your clients; and use the software which suits theirs needs best.

    As a scratch disc, if you are serious about your workflow, a fast Intel X25 SSD would be your best option; if you RAID 0 some of them, you have almost no limits. It´s still expensive, but pushes your workflow speedwise straight forward. Any software using scratch (anything Audio/Photo/Video related) can get performance gains from this.

    The 2,26Ghz 8 Core Mac Pro might be your best bet, as it offers a much better memory upgrade path - you have double the slots compared to the four core option, therefore you can utilize the yet much cheaper 2GB RAM modules to get to 16GB RAM. You are desperate for memory, so stay away from the 4 core Mac Pro.

    Snow Leopard will only give as much enhancements, as the software borrows from it. Don´t speculate now, because it´s not available yet and no real world tests are possible, mostly regarding a workhorse unit. All third party software needs to adapt to 10.6 which more or less might take a year or two before the full potential is unlocked.

    For the moment I would recommend you try out Vista 64Bit (upgrade shouldn´t be too much from 32Bit, I guess), maximize your RAM to at least 8GB, and get a Intel X25 SSD for scratch. I am sure, your system becomes more stable (which also mostly depends on all your additional setup, by the way - there may be some berserk unit hiding, software or hardware wise).

    If you have, by any means, the chance to test your material on a new Mac Pro with the software you wish for, do it. I am sure you could ask at any Apple Store in your neighbourhood.
     
  4. morphin1 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2009
    Location:
    India
    #4
    Thanks guys for the input.
    Vista has been a pain for compatibility with various softwares and feels like MS did a lousy job with this series of OS. It is definitely more stable than XP but that's about it.
    I know no real speculations can be made about Snow's performance boost to Octacore.
    Now I do not know hot to make myself wait for september :):::: and even then off the bat there will be no software available to make use of the boost unless snow does the job for the app.
    So I could be waiting for a long time as I see that next version of FC might be out in september.
    Now just for the heck of partially future proofing if I get the octa core 2.26 will that be good enough as apparently the quad 2.66 kicks the Octa's arse.
    The 2.66 Octa is costing me an arm and a leg at about $6500(with ati hd4870) as opposed to the
    Octa 2.26 which is costing me $3600(stock) and
    Quad 2.66 with HD 4870 at $3600
    Quad 2.93 with HD4870 at $4250
    The above prices are without Tax :) which is applicable at 4%.
    (Btw if you guys are wondering I am located in India and got these rates from apple official dealer called RSG Infotech)
    Zo pls assist more if possible
    And yes the 5dMKII does do 1080P video recording and my system dies under Adobe AE and even photoshop CS$ sometimes :) but it's a killer machine at gaming (for which it was initially built)
     
  5. mcpryon2 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2008
    #5
    Avid is still the industry standard, but FC is starting to grow more. I use both, but knowing Avid will get you a job before knowing FC will. In the industry, Avid is still the big boy, anybody working in it will admit that...despite the "adventure" of using it.

    Not that FC and Premiere and Vegas don't have their place.
     
  6. Dr.Pants macrumors 65816

    Dr.Pants

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2009
    #6
    Your main problem - 32-bit only addressed a certain amount of memory. And even then since I assuse you asre using either 2x2GB or 4x1GB for your RAM you are defualting to dual-channel rather then triple channel (might depend on the mobo). Trying out 64-bit Vista with a metric arsetonne of DDR3 memory in triple channel is worth a shot... however;
    An SSD for a scratch drive is overkill. Money is better invested in a RAID controller and array of enterprise drives; however, the guy does make a good point. hard disc throughput, epecically with 1080, is what chokes the system, even more then your OS.

    2.26 8-core. Greater RAM limit and far more flexibility then the 2.26 quad, not to mention processor upgradibility at a later date.
    Yes, those programs can address a good lot of RAM in the system; written with 64-bit addressing, I do not know of a consumer/professional machine that has can fit the RAM limit (supercomputers, on the other hand...)
    We're Mac people! FCS; Adobe has a jewel of a program with AE, though. It depends, try them both if you can.
    Presumably. There will be a greater jump when programs come out to take OpenCL to its full advantage.
    Probably - My G5 works nicer then some Windows machines I know. But you don't know until you try - find an Apple store and demand to use their MacPro.
     
  7. giffut macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2003
    Location:
    Germany
    #7
    I ...

    ... would suggest the Octo 2,26, regarding your calculations. The increase in Mhz with the top of the line units is just that - a linear increase. Also do only buy the minimum stock specification at Apple, and make all the upgrades like RAM and harddrives via third parties. This will win your money much more performance, so to speak. Any octo Mac Pro will beat the pants off any quad core Mac Pro in multi threaded applications - and single threaded ones aren´t really your type of workload, so don´t you worry. For real heavy workloads the quad mac pro is a no go, especially because of four single RAM slots, only - the octo mac pros have eight slots - four for each processor unit. You pretty fast will need much more RAM - and the quad core won´t deliver it, it´s that simple.

    E.g., you could safe on the graphiccard for now and upgrade later, when all the dust from OSX 10.6 regarding supported graphic hardware has settled. You also could hack a PC card to save some money. The stock card will be sufficient for now. Or you grab a used Nvidia 8800GT Mac Edition.

    I certainly can´t talk about India, as I am around 4500 miles away, but via creditcard you should be able to purchase from online retailers, even from the US. You even might try eBay, some sort of, to get good deals. Used stuff is not bad, if you know what you are doing.
     
  8. morphin1 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2009
    Location:
    India
    #8
    Thanks Dr. Pants and Giffut for the help and Ideas.
    Is AE compatible with FCP workflow?
    I don't see myself using too many non multi thread apps so I feel the 2.26 is the way to go. After all MAC Pro's aren't meant for gaming hehe.
    Love the fact that 2.26 Octa will be much more upgradeable as opposed to the Quad.
    How can you change the processor on a MAC? I thought it was impossible(At least on Nehalem based MAC's)
    I do order a lot of stuff online from USA/EU for myself as I don't get any of the high end/niche products here :)
    Only if I could find a store that ships mac related stuff to India and accepts Paypal lol. Can't find many items on Ebay for MAC Pro 2009.
    I am not into the benchmark crap anymore as I have seen it's usually crap. What is the use of a benchmark if there is no app to use that kind of power properly.
    I just hate Vista (have 3 copies :) an Don't think will go back to windows after the MAC Pro except keep one gaming rig.
    Thanks for the help any more ideas/suggestions are welcome so that people in a similar boat as me can make this a one page stop for Video hardware questions.
    Cheers and thanks all
     
  9. giffut macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2003
    Location:
    Germany
    #9
    You ...

    .... theoretically can swap processors, but: Apple uses the XEON, the workstation grade i7, which costs a fortune when bought retail. They are NOT the generic i7 you see sold at every corner now (it does not have the fast QPI memory link and the EEC support). You might pay up to US$1500,- for each unit. Basically you won´t be able to beat Apples pricing for the future to come, which means: Apples most expensive Mac Pro is much cheaper than any upgrade path available to you at the moment. This might change, though, when you really need to upgrade your machine in, let´s say, three to five years from now.

    Yes, more or less both After Effects and Final Cut are in good relationship to another. As this always hints on occasional hickups and the like - this will be confronting you as problems arise. There are plenty of specific tutorials, guidelines asf. for trading files/data in between Final Cut, After Effects, Motion all over the net.
     
  10. morphin1 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2009
    Location:
    India
    #10
    Ummmmm,
    I see what you all are saying. Personally I don't play games on PC that much and SCII will hopefully have native MAC support so I am set.
    Personally am tired of plonking money on custom built rigs which take so much time and energy and in the end he glorious Window's OS decided to eat 30% of the resources. So I am done paying for MS's bad programming.
    Am very tired of window OS's and am hoping apple does a better job at increasing productivity and reducing head aches.
    Hehe.
    Now any news of FCS 3 or upgrade of motion etc?
    Should I wait till september to buy the MAC PRO ?(as in will there be any upgrades soon to the hardware?)
    Thanks
     
  11. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

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    #11
    No hardware updates until around June 2010.

    Software update information is not leaked. We can't know.
     
  12. Eidorian macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

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  13. morphin1 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2009
    Location:
    India
    #13
    Haha I will give the win7 64bit a try but again am exhausted literally due to poor driver support etc on new window launches.
    Now I just want something that works.
    Every minute I work on windows am scared thinking of what might go wrong next lol.
    No more shall I give my money to MS. Have used my friend's 2008 mac book for 2 weeks and love the OS. The fregging mac book allows me to edit without crashes as opposed to my desktop. But again the mac won't allow me to play games with graphics turned all the way up hehe.
    Weird question though.
    Nvidia gt285 has killer specs and beats the Quadro 4800 spec wise. Why is the performance on a Mac so dismal?
    I thought that the 285 would whoop the Ati HD 4870's butt(it does but not by huge margins), but it does not surprisingly while at the same time consuming 60%more power,generating more heat etc.
    What GPU should I go for. Yes I am an ocassional gamer. TF2,SC,Diablo,FPS,etc etc hehe
     
  14. Eidorian macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

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    #14
    Windows 7 uses the same driver model that Vista does. That's nearly 3 years of drivers ready.
     
  15. iMacmatician macrumors 601

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    Jul 20, 2008
    #15
    Gulftown's coming in May 2010 so June's not too unreasonable.
     
  16. morphin1 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #16
    Ummmm, so should i wait for gulftown?
    I am really in a state of confusion now because there is no knowing how much will Snow boost the Octa's performance.
    Should I wait another year as with tech new stuff rolls out every year now:)
     
  17. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

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    #17
    Wait until Haswell in 2013.

    No, buy now. If you wait for Snow Leopard, then it's only sixish months until Gulftown. And then it's only a year and a quarter until the server Sandy Bridge. And then it's only eight months until 10.7... You see?
     
  18. MovieCutter macrumors 68040

    MovieCutter

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    Washington, DC
    #18
    Why not just take the money you'd spend on a new Mac Pro now, and buy some plutonium for your flux capacitor, go 5 years into the future, then you won't have to WAIT for the next best thing, you'll already have it!


    ....oh, and be sure to bring back a sports almanac and a list of all winning lottery numbers for jackpots over $100 million...thanks. :cool:
     
  19. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

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    #19
    Only problem with that is... you still have to find out where the ticket is. :D

    Unless the list shows the specific gas station and day on which it was purchased. :p
     
  20. iSlave macrumors 6502

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    #20
    Build a Hackintosh and save a ton of money. Screw the legality.
     
  21. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

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    #21
    Good, because it isn't illegal to do it yourself.
     
  22. iSlave macrumors 6502

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    #22
    Even better! :p:apple:
     
  23. MovieCutter macrumors 68040

    MovieCutter

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    #23
    Powerball, pick your own numbers
     
  24. morphin1 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jun 28, 2009
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    India
    #24
    Lmao Movie cutter. Don't jump me bro, I know we cannot plan for every possible future scenario but that's what we try to do as humans lol.(Must have a nuclear bunker in case of a fallout? haha)

    And yeah tallest I know what you are saying. It was like when I was buying the 5DMKII, should I buy now or wait till Photokina and I figured it's better to take pictures now than to wait 9months doing nothing. The only problem here is that Snow is only 2months away and we really don't know it's impact on octa core performance, so my dilemma is get a Quad 2.9? Octa 2.26 although from reviews etc, the latter sounds better for AE, video editing.

    Now is anyone coming to India in the near future so that I can ask them to smuggle 32gb ram for me from OWC lol.
     

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