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Thread: New Setup Needed? Newbie Question...

  1. #1
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    Default New Setup Needed? Newbie Question...

    Hey I've recently decided to get into the whole video editing production, editing, etc. and basically I'm wondering what would be the best setup for music video and short film editing? I currently have a 2 year old compaq presario 700 notebook, which has been working pretty damn well for all my photoshop, illustrator and flash needs (which I have been doing for lil over a year). Anyways, I am fairly inexperienced with the actual computer specs thing, but I'll give it my best shot....
    ~AMD Duron Processor
    ~697 Mhz
    ~240 mb of ram
    ~18.6 GB total on C drive

    No questions about camcorders, Ive got that sorted out. But do you think I should keep my current laptop and just purchase external hardrives w/ firewire connections? Or just get a new comp all together? I have a 1300 dollar budget...hopefully wont have to use it all. So get a new comp or just stick w/ my old one? Any other options? If you need any info on my current comp, just tell me whacha need (and how 2 acces it ). Oh yea, XP Home edition. And if anybody has any questions on graphic design, I will be more then happy to answer them.


    Any help would be VERY appreciated.

  2. #2
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    Oh yea, I recently purchased Premiere Pro...Thought I might add that. (Sorry about the double post).

  3. #3
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    Actually, I'm going to have to cut down that budget to 1000...I really shouldnt be spending that 300 dollars. Any systems or anything that you guys could recomend for under 1000 dollars?

  4. #4
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    You'll be dissapointed with your current set-up if you're thinking of using it for video editing - there's a strong possibilty of dropped frames in capture due to a slow processor and harddrive, apps will probably fall over when rendering due to low ram, and videos will take an age to encode . Editing would be possible, just it wouldn't be much fun and you'd have to have the patience of a saint!

    This thread might be useful to you http://www.videoeditingforums.co.uk/viewtopic.php?t=76

    Also, check out this guide to harddrives:
    http://www.marcpeters.co.uk/video-ed...harddrive.html

    to hyperthreading
    http://www.marcpeters.co.uk/dual-processor.html and to CPU comparisons (bit outdated now) http://www20.tomshardware.com/cpu/20...-guide-17.html

    The FAQ also has a bit on video editing cards:

    What capture card should I buy?

    Remember that all Firewire cards are created equal. A bog standard firewire card is less than $25/£25 and combined with video capture software, will enable DV capture from your camcorder. You can get a freeware DV capture app from http://www.carr-engineering.com/dvio.htm If the link is dead, do a search for DVIO in google. If you're not going to edit your footage, this is a very cheap option! If you do want to edit your video, you can pick up a cheap video editing suite such as Ulead Video Studio, Pinnacle Studio or Pure Motion edit studio. Reviews and guides to these can be found at http://www.marcpeters.co.uk/guides.html

    Some manufacturers bundle a standard firewire card with video editing software and call it a video editing card. These usually retail for less than $100/£100. Because the cards don't offer any hardware acceleration, you'll want to make sure you get the best bundled software. Find the video editing app you want, then buy a card that comes with it!

    You may also get analogue video connections to enable video transfer from VCRs etc. But if you're going down the DV route, make sure you get a firewire card bundled . Some "video editing cards" at this price range offer a USB connection.

    The next "range" of cards are around the $500-700 mark and offer a sophisticated video editing suite such as Adobe Premiere, with a dedicated video editing card (harware accelerated transitions etc)
    Should give you a few things to think about!

  5. #5
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    Hmm, ok...read everything you posted and then some. So it looks like I'm def going to need a new computer...Any one you could recomend for around 1000 dollars? I dont have the time to make one...buy the seperate parts and assemble it, so I'm hoping to buy from a big name type company...maybe Dell? Any suggestions for a particualar computer? And what are the specs I would need to handle video editing with priemere? All the guides I have seen on buying computers for video editiing have been pretty outdated. And I know that there is a rather steep learning curve for those new to digital editing when you use priemere, but I got a fantastic deal for it, and I have yet to have a complaint with any other adobe software.

    Just checked out that thread you recomended...missed it the first time reading. Yea, that was pretty helpful. Unfortunately, I do need a new monitor and os...would the xp mediacenter be a good choice? Ugh...very confuzed right now. :(

  6. #6
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    I wouldn't buy a comp for video editing from someone like Dell personally. Big name companies PC's are often lacking somewhere, although Dell's are maybe better than a lot of other big companies for this. You'll get a lot less bang for your buck too. I think on your budget you might get something more specific towards a good media PC. I know of plenty such specialised retailers here in UK, but in US

    It would probably be a good idea to visit some US based audio/video forums and check out sites hosted by the major audio/video magazines in the US. See what recomendations for computer retailers they have.

    Alternatively, if your not wanting to build yourself, a good solution might be to get the specs for your system and have a computer store build it for you. I know you say you don't have much time but, that might reflect in what you get for your money. I built a pretty darn good Dual CPU audio workstation about a year ago for about £1500 and it's still pretty darn good by today's standards. Given that was a year ago and parts are cheaper in the US, you might be able to have someone build something like this for you.
    Who shares wins

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    I'm with bit.heed on that one - you need to know exactly what components you're getting. You don't want to find out down the line that the reason your PC was so cheap was cos they scrimped on an important component like the harddrive. You often see smaller PC system builders offering PCs for very low prices - and they often do this by compromising on the quality of the components.

  8. #8
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    Thanx a lot, both of ya! You both been a ton of help. I know you said to kinda avoid the big companies, but I was flipping through this HP catalogue (sp?) and I thought this looked like a pretty good deal...

    Pentium 4 Proc. w/ Hyper Threading ( ) 2.80 GHz
    Xp Home Edition
    512 MB DDR PC 3200 SDRAM (1 DIMM)
    160 GB Ultra DMA (7200 rpm)
    16x DVD-ROM
    4x DVD writer (DVD+RW/CD-RW)
    256 MB ATI Radeon 9600 graphics cards; fills 8x AGP slot
    Harman Kardon 2-piece speakers
    7-in-1 media card reader
    USB 2.0; FireWire

    999.99...so 1000 dollars.
    I can also choose to upgrade to XP pro for another 75 dollars.

    How does this sound?

  9. #9
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    Sounds like what you need What about the monitor???

  10. #10
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    Umm, I'm guessing that my lil brothers game boy advanced wouldnt work too well...?

    I actually have that sorted out...kinda. I figure I can probably sell this computer for at least 300 dollars...which is enough to buy a decent 15 inch LCD flatscreen moniter.
    Here are the specs for it...nor quite sure what they actually mean...but you think its a good moniter?

    15 inches
    Active matrix TFT LCD
    14 (h) x 13.6 (w) x 7. (d)
    1024x768 pixels at 60 Hz
    250 nits
    400:1
    23ms
    Has a detachable base...
    300 dollars from compaq.

    Good deal?

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