Latest post Tue, May 4 2010 8:34 AM by DylanReeve. 6 replies.
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  • Mon, May 3 2010 12:21 PM

    Six questions

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    Hi,

    I am looking for a new computer, and because I want to use Media Composer, my new computer has to work with that program. I have read different topics about this on the forum, and I have read the system requirements and the two lists with Avid-qualified Mac-based and Windows-based computers. But there are still some things that I'm not sure about, and I would really appreciate if someone could help me Smile

     

    I am going to edit HD and HDV on my new computer - e.g. video shot with Canon EOS Rebel T2i, which shoot Full HD at 25/30p and 1280x720 at 50/60p in MOV (image date: H.264)

     

    I consider buying an iMac or a Macbook Pro - or maybe another computer, but I can't afford a more expensive computer than the iMac or the Macbook Pro. I would like a laptop such as the Macbook Pro the most because you can take it with you wherever you go.

     

    In the system requirements it says:

    "Please note that support of uncompressed video on laptops is limited to one stream of uncompressed SD video"

    And here comes my first question:

     

    1) Does this mean, that you can't edit HD or HDV on a laptop such as the Macbook Pro without converting the video to DNxHD and loose quality?

    If that is right, isn't it strange? Because I'm pretty sure that you can edit uncompressed HD and HDV on a laptop in editing programs such as Sony Vegas Pro and Adobe Premiere Pro. (I have edited short HDV-videos in Adobe and Vegas on my old laptop without converting the video to a codec like DNxHD)

     

    My other questions are:

    2) Would I be able to edit uncompressed HD and HDV if I buy an iMac instead of a Macbook Pro?

     

    3) Are there other differences between editing HD on an iMac and a Macbook Pro - I guess the iMac would be faster, but are there other limitations?

     

    4) Does Media Composer allow you to connect a second monitor to your iMac or Macbook Pro?

     

    5) I have read about the Mojo DX and Nitris DX, but I can't figure out what it really does? Do you have to have one of these to edit uncompressed HD or HDV? Or to connect a second monitor?

     

    6) I installed the Media Composer trial on my laptop to try it out. Unfortunately my laptop broke down after using Media Composer for about 2 days. But when I was using Meida Composer I was wondering about one thing. Aren't you able to apply more than one effect without making a video-mixdown every time you apply a new affect on the same clip?

     

    I know it was a lot of questions, but I really want to be sure that my new computer will live up to my expectations when working with Media Composer before I spend a lot of money. I hope some of you can help me J

    Thanks in advance.

     

     

     

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  • Mon, May 3 2010 1:44 PM In reply to

    • mortennissen
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    Re: Six questions

    Holakim Video:

    1) Does this mean, that you can't edit HD or HDV on a laptop such as the Macbook Pro without converting the video to DNxHD and loose quality?

    I edit HDV on my MacBook Pro all the time, and it's working great (remember that HDV is highly compressed from the beginning, but it is a long-GOP format which makes it more challenging for the computer). But not sure how many layers you can play in realtime though. Compressing to DNxHD is a great option anyway, because your material will hold up better if you're sending it to other applications or whatever, and you computer will feel better. And the filesize will be larger when converting to DNxHD from HDV, so you'll actually preserve more of the quality over time.

    Holakim Video:

    6) Aren't you able to apply more than one effect without making a video-mixdown every time you apply a new affect on the same clip?

    Hold down the alt-key (Windows) or ctrl-key (Mac) while dragging the effect to the clip will apply it on top of the other. If all of your effects are promoted to advanced keyframes, you can change the order in the effect editor itself. You can or may have to use nesting to step into the clip in the timeline sometimes; take a loook.

    Media Composer with Symphony 8.3 | iMac 27" 2.93GHz Quad-Core Intel Core i7, 16 GB RAM, ATI Radeon HD 5750 1GB | OS X 10.10.1 [view my complete system specs]
  • Mon, May 3 2010 1:59 PM In reply to

    • DylanReeve
    • Top 50 Contributor
    • Joined on Thu, Oct 13 2005
    • Auckland, New Zealand
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      Moderator: MCA PC

    Re: Six questions

    Holakim Video:

    In the system requirements it says:

    "Please note that support of uncompressed video on laptops is limited to one stream of uncompressed SD video"

    And here comes my first question:

    1) Does this mean, that you can't edit HD or HDV on a laptop such as the Macbook Pro without converting the video to DNxHD and loose quality?

    If that is right, isn't it strange? Because I'm pretty sure that you can edit uncompressed HD and HDV on a laptop in editing programs such as Sony Vegas Pro and Adobe Premiere Pro. (I have edited short HDV-videos in Adobe and Vegas on my old laptop without converting the video to a codec like DNxHD)

    HDV is not uncompressed HD. Uncompressed HD is full 1920x1080 or 1280x720 video 4:2:2 or 4:4:4 sampled, and with 8- or 10-bits per channel. It is a much much higher datarate than any of the formats you're likely to be working with.

    Media Composer can and will work with multiple streams of HDV (the exact number will vary depending on the specifics of your computer). However DNxHD will probably give you better editing performance than HDV, as it is a better optimised codec for editing. It also has superior image quality and is much better suited to any image manipulation or effects work.

    My other questions are:

    2) Would I be able to edit uncompressed HD and HDV if I buy an iMac instead of a Macbook Pro?

    See above - no issue with HDV on either system.

    3) Are there other differences between editing HD on an iMac and a Macbook Pro - I guess the iMac would be faster, but are there other limitations?

    No specific differences, but there are practical considerations about screen size, I/O connections and things like that.

    4) Does Media Composer allow you to connect a second monitor to your iMac or Macbook Pro?

     Media Composer will work across spanned monitors in that sort of scenario if the computer supports it, although mismatched monitor sizes or resolutions can present practical problems.

    5) I have read about the Mojo DX and Nitris DX, but I can't figure out what it really does? Do you have to have one of these to edit uncompressed HD or HDV? Or to connect a second monitor?

    They are essentially I/O devices. They will allow you to capture video from professional tape decks (Digibeta, HDCAM, etc) and they provide full video output for monitoring and mastering to profession tape formats. At the moment they are the way to get a full quality signal to a broadcast monitor for viewing and monitoring purpose, but when Media Composer 5.0 is released (which you will be upgraded to for free if you purchase now) you will also be able to use a Matrox MXO Mini for monitoring.

    6) I installed the Media Composer trial on my laptop to try it out. Unfortunately my laptop broke down after using Media Composer for about 2 days. But when I was using Meida Composer I was wondering about one thing. Aren't you able to apply more than one effect without making a video-mixdown every time you apply a new affect on the same clip?

    Avid's effects workflow is a little different from some others so it may not be immediately obvious, but you can add multiple effects (they are 'nested'), also you can add effects to 'filler' above the video layers, which is very powerful.

    I know it was a lot of questions, but I really want to be sure that my new computer will live up to my expectations when working with Media Composer before I spend a lot of money. I hope some of you can help me J

    Thanks in advance.

    Media Composer should be more than capable of doing everything you need. I've personally mastered hundreds of hours of broadcast television entirely within Media Composer. It has a very strong toolset and is very robust. However if you're coming from other tools like Vegas, Premiere or FCP then you will find that some things aren't immediately obvious - however there are many many tutorials and guides here, and the forums are very responsive also.

    Cheers,
    Dylan

    HP Workstations with MC 8.4 64TB EditShare XStream Storage [view my complete system specs]

    Dylan Reeve - Edit Geek // Online/Offline Editor // Post Production Supervisor
    Auckland, New Zealand

     

  • Mon, May 3 2010 3:47 PM In reply to

    Re: Six questions

    Regarding video "streams" keep in mind that you can have two video streams if you have a clip with a dissolve on it.  As soon as Avid starts playing the dissolve it is playing two streams.  

    A stream does not equal a "layer" or video track.  So, translating the text:  "video on laptops is limited to one stream of uncompressed SD video" it means that if you have an uncompressed SD video clip with an effect on it, it will not play in real-time on a laptop.  

     

    MacPro dual 2.66GHz 6GB RAM nVIDIA GeForce 7300 GT Storage: 2TB G-Speed eS with controller card 3x1TB Hitachi SATA-II internals, various external FW/USB... [view my complete system specs]

    Kenton VanNatten | Avid Editor (for hire)

    "I am not obsessed... I'm detail-oriented"

  • Mon, May 3 2010 4:19 PM In reply to

    • DylanReeve
    • Top 50 Contributor
    • Joined on Thu, Oct 13 2005
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    Re: Six questions

    Oh I didn't notice it said "SD" stream...

    In this case an uncompressed SD stream is around 170Mb/s which might tax a laptop drive, but I doubt it would be impossible to do more than one stream.

    My laptop, which is an entirely unsupported and fairly low-spec Compaq has no problem with 2-3 streams of MPEG 50 video, and can also cope well with XDCAM EX and DNxHD 120.

    The "Video on laptops is limited to one stream of uncompressed SD" is an odd statement really, it would presumably be dependant on a number of factors.

    HP Workstations with MC 8.4 64TB EditShare XStream Storage [view my complete system specs]

    Dylan Reeve - Edit Geek // Online/Offline Editor // Post Production Supervisor
    Auckland, New Zealand

     

  • Mon, May 3 2010 4:42 PM In reply to

    Re: Six questions

    Sycophant:
    My laptop, which is an entirely unsupported and fairly low-spec Compaq has no problem with 2-3 streams of MPEG 50 video, and can also cope well with XDCAM EX and DNxHD 120

    MPEG 50, XDCam and any DNx material are compressed.  Uncompressed means 1:1.  

    MacPro dual 2.66GHz 6GB RAM nVIDIA GeForce 7300 GT Storage: 2TB G-Speed eS with controller card 3x1TB Hitachi SATA-II internals, various external FW/USB... [view my complete system specs]

    Kenton VanNatten | Avid Editor (for hire)

    "I am not obsessed... I'm detail-oriented"

  • Tue, May 4 2010 8:34 AM In reply to

    • DylanReeve
    • Top 50 Contributor
    • Joined on Thu, Oct 13 2005
    • Auckland, New Zealand
    • Posts 1,677
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    • Moderator: MCA Mac
      Moderator: MCA PC

    Re: Six questions

    Right, but 1:1 SD video is around 170Mb/s and I can play at least two streams of DNxHD 120, so surely 1:1 isn't that much more demanding.

    The post was really meant to say two things... Firstly it's odd that there's such a definitive statement about uncompressed SD. The second was that my laptop has no problem with multiple streams of compressed SD and HD video, so a more powerful one should be just fine also.

    HP Workstations with MC 8.4 64TB EditShare XStream Storage [view my complete system specs]

    Dylan Reeve - Edit Geek // Online/Offline Editor // Post Production Supervisor
    Auckland, New Zealand

     

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