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Thread: Should my source files be on an external hard drive?

  1. Default Should my source files be on an external hard drive?

    I'm got a Vegas Trial on my laptop. My source video is currently in the 'my video' folder.
    The laptop is a couple of years old: HP Pavillion, 2 Ghz Duo Intel CPU, 3 Gb RAM.
    Everything seems to be running as well as it could be; Pinnacle ran worse.

    I've got a Maxtor 600Gb usb hard drive sitting here that I use for backup images.
    Should I put the source video files on that instead of on the C:/ drive?
    Would it make any difference to speed/stability when editing video?

    The source files are raw .mov (JVC Everio) and .mts (Canon Legria) from the cameras.
    They seem to be editing fine, but should I be converting them to another format before importing them to Vegas? If so, why?


  2. #2


    I would not normally recommend putting the source files on an external hard drive, it's not the most optimum set up for editing video especially if it's HD. However, I have successfully done this but with a fast computer not an old laptop with no trouble. The only way you are going to know is to try it and see how it runs on your set up.

  3. Default

    OK, cheers.
    Anyone got thoughts about question 2 (apart from, 'that's a stupid question')?
    Last edited by -Anti-; 01-16-2011 at 10:28 PM.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Princeton, NJ USA


    1. It depends on your set up. If you're trying to edit video from an external drive, the USB connection will slow you down. It's always a good idea to keep your media off of your 'C' drive, but only if you can access it through a high speed connection. Firewire 800 or another speedy wire.
    2. If your files are "editing fine" I wouldn't convert them. All that's doing is compressing a compressed file. Which you'll then recompress when you output your final project.

  5. Default

    Thanks for the advice.

  6. #6


    As with the general concensus, you dont want your source footage on an exernal usb drive. But, usb uses your processor to aid in the transfer of data. Firewire normally has it's own dedicated processor. The issues of old are less (not non existent), releveant than before as processors have become faster and more capale.

    But even so, you dont want your source footage on the same drive as your system.

    It kind of makes sence, your software needs to access the drive it is installed on every tme you tell it to do something to your source footage (add an edit etc.) So keeping them on separate drives reduces traffic trying to access the same paths.


  7. Default

    That makes sense, but laptops only have one drive (at least, mine does).
    I do have an un-used firewire port though. I'll take a look in my local MediaMarkt to see
    if there are any firewire drives, but I don't think I've ever seen one there - only usb ones.


  8. #8


    Thats just a step in the right direction as to why laptops aren't the first choice for edit suites.


  9. Default

    Yep. I'm surprised these wee things can do any video editing at all.
    I suppose we have the gamers to thank for that.

  10. #10


    And I was surprised what a "wee" glenmornagie or so could do too. Where you from mr giver?


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