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PC Spec

Discussion in 'Camcorders, Action Cams & Video Editing Forum' started by mab25, Jan 22, 2003.

  1. mab25


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    I'm looking into buying a new PC and want to be able to do a bit of video editing. I have a Sony Digital 8 camcorder with DV out.

    The problem I'm having is finding out what spec PC I should be looking to buy to allow decent video editing capabilities (i.e. without frame loss)

    I know that I will need a large and fast hard disk and plenty of memory but am not sure what the minimum requirements are.
    Also how important is the processer speed when it comes to video editing. Should I aim for more memory and disk at the expense of a fast processor.

    I'm not aiming to do anything professional but would like decent results.

    Any advice with this would be appreciated.

  2. graham.myers


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    I specced my machine specifically for video editing. This was at least 3 years ago!!!

    I have an Athlon 1Ghz, 512Mb PC133 memory and 4x hard disks -

    1x 60gb for software, data swap etc
    1x 30gb for capture
    1x 30gb for editing
    1x 30gb for print to tape builds

    all the disks are IBM IDE ATA100 disks

    My old machine was a Pentium 2 400Mhz with 512Mb PC100 memory

    It has 3x Seagate 10,000 rev SCSI-UW disks for video editing. I use this for analogue capture from a hi-8 source.

    Both these machines give me good editing at a decent speed with no dropped frames. Indeed the software I use (Adobe Premier 5.1c) automatically goes back to the camera and gets dropped frames if it comes across any when using a DV source connected via firewire.

    Todays machines for circa £700 knock the socks of that spec so I don't think even today's minimum spec will prove "too slow". Just make sure you get firewire to connect the cam.

    My recomendations is to go for more memory and disk in preference to the fastest processor you can get. The new multi-threading technology present in the latest P4-3ghz isn't generally used by the editing software yet so will take a while to filter in and be usefull.
  3. MarkE19


    Aug 10, 2002
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    Rainham Essex
    Few recommendations:

    get 2 hard disks
    disk 1 - programmes - Windows, editing software etc.
    disk 2 - all captured/edited video

    RAM - 256Mb min but would recommend 512Mb (memory is very cheep now)

    The fastest CPU you can afford. The faster the CPU the quicker it is to render your footage, but long footage will still need to be left to render overnight if lots of effects etc.

    Firewire card for capture
    Analgue outputs on capture card or graphics card if copying to VCR.

    Disk space is 4minutes of footage per Gb, so the larger the drive the better (remember to edit video you need spare disk space!).

  4. jamesgrahamuk


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    You could try a Mac.

    After years of frustration with video capture and editing on the PC I defected to Apple.

    I'm using the 17" flat panel (widescreen) iMac. Hours of editing fun without, in my experience, the crash and burn frustration of PC based editing. I capture and edit DV from my Canon MV550i and XL1s without a hitch.

    iMovie (which ships with the OS) is great but Final Cut is the business if you are thinking of pro quality projects.

    I'll spare you the Mac evangelist sermon but I just thought it was worth mentioning.

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