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Thread: Good money after bad?

  1. #1

    Default Good money after bad?

    Hi there, I am new to editing, and am wondering if my computer is worth upgrading. I'm a little confused, as I remember editing videos (VHS) on a university computer in '99 that seemed to have little or no problems.

    It is a low-profile IBM P4 1.8 Ghz with a 80 Gig hard disk and 768Mb RAM. I have been capturiong with a leadtek 200TV - a $50 US card.

    I can't capture at all in MPEG2 due to darkness, and cannot convert files to that format. Even with MPEG1 it gets a bit choppy sometimes

    a) Is it worth doubling my RAM, or should I be saving for a new comp?

    b) Is there anything I can do to optimise things (I have no room in the case for a separate hard drive)?

    c) Why won't me comp capture in MPEG 2 or convert to it without the whole picture going dark, or even black?

    Thanks,

    Michael

  2. #2
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    Not sure this helps you at all, but I'd say there was little wrong with your PC for video editing. I have a 2.0MHz processor and 512MB RAM, and don't experience any problems in capturing from miniDV, editing in Premiere Pro and outputting to DVD via Adobe Encore. And while I've subsequently invested in a second internal hard drive, that was mainly for capacity purposes, rather than performance - I didn't experience any issues with just one drive (although everyone on the forum will likely tell you I was lucky...) I guess what I'm saying is, you may need to look elsewhere other than your PC's specs to find out what your problem is.
    Premiere Pro, Encore, Photoshop, Ulead VS6, WXP Pro, Core 2 Duo, 2GB, 2 x 250GB SATA3 drives, 2 x 250GB USB 2 external drive, DVD writer, GeForce 7300 GS 256MB

    The biggest fool can ask questions that the wisest man cannot answer...

  3. #3
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    I'm using a 1.7GHz P4, which is a bit annoyingly slow at times, but it's useable.

    If you're going to upgrade anything, I suggest an additional hard drive. There is no such thing as too much HD space!

  4. #4

    Default Chur

    Thanks, thats good news. I am wondering if I need a better graphics card, but am guessing that it is OK. I have a 16 MB nVidia Vanta. I only want to capture and cut, nothing flashy, so it will be OK, right?

  5. #5
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    Miguel: most video editing software doesn't care if you've got a graphics card or not, and doesn't take advantage of it. I doubt that's your problem either...
    Premiere Pro, Encore, Photoshop, Ulead VS6, WXP Pro, Core 2 Duo, 2GB, 2 x 250GB SATA3 drives, 2 x 250GB USB 2 external drive, DVD writer, GeForce 7300 GS 256MB

    The biggest fool can ask questions that the wisest man cannot answer...

  6. #6
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    Ian is that a Radeon 9250 256MB I see under the hood?

  7. #7
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    Unless you use Premiere Pro or fancy 3D/compositing apps, the video card doesn't matter. Doing video is just a 2D thing, so OpenGL and overlay are important.
    In my AMD64 3 GHz / 1 Gig of RAM / Avid+Pinnacle system, I have a 64-meg video card, the good old GeForce4 MX4000... and I will keep it until I upgrade to some other mobo that won't support AGP.

  8. #8
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    Nikosony: well spotted! It's probably one of the more stupid things I ever bought. I wasn't really thinking at the time, and I saw a graphics card with 256MB of memory on it that was really cheap (~35) and I thought "Wow! Gotta have me some of that" I pushed the boat out even further and got a fan that fits in a PCI slot and a splitter cable so I could power the fan - but basically, the reason it's cheap is that it's rubbish. Well, no, it's not rubbish - it just doesn't do anything at all. I guess I bought it just to try to improve overall system throughput (not for gaming or viditing) , given that my PC runs like a dog, but you'd never know it was in there. The only good thing about it is that it's given me dual head support, which I now take advantage of since I got a nice 19" TFT DVI screen for Chrsitmas.

    Mihai: are you suggesting that PPro takes advantage of a graphics card? I'd swear I'd read elsewhere that it didn't/couldn't?
    Premiere Pro, Encore, Photoshop, Ulead VS6, WXP Pro, Core 2 Duo, 2GB, 2 x 250GB SATA3 drives, 2 x 250GB USB 2 external drive, DVD writer, GeForce 7300 GS 256MB

    The biggest fool can ask questions that the wisest man cannot answer...

  9. #9
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    Ian, I don't use Adobe, but I've heard that the new version of their Premiere Pro, 2.0, will benefit from a faster, better equipped video card, using the GPU for rendering. Not sure about that.

  10. #10
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    Mihai: yes, I think I may have heard that too. I'm pretty certain that PPro 1.5 (or wherever we're up to now) doesn't, though.
    Premiere Pro, Encore, Photoshop, Ulead VS6, WXP Pro, Core 2 Duo, 2GB, 2 x 250GB SATA3 drives, 2 x 250GB USB 2 external drive, DVD writer, GeForce 7300 GS 256MB

    The biggest fool can ask questions that the wisest man cannot answer...

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