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High-end video editing; Mac or PC?

Dec 7, 2012 10:47 AM

Tags: #mac #export #pc #upgrade #time #ae #or #os #optimization #workstation

Hello,

 

I need help upgrading my video editing station. My budget is up to about $4k

 

Here are my current specs:

27 inch iMac

Intel Core i7 3.4Ghz Quad-Core

12 GB (2x2GB,2x4GB 1333 MHz DDR3)

AMD Radeon HD 6970M 1024MB

 

My workflow is primarily Premiere Pro, editing and exporting high quality HD video from my Canon 60D, sometimes this also includes AE comps. Most often my exports are videos of lectures which run about 20 minutes long.

 

With my current setup playback and editing is fine, not many hangups rendering or previewing video... However my problem is I'm finding as I do more graphic intensive videos my export time has really increased, and makes me wonder if I've outgrown my iMac... so considering upgrading to the next level of machine that will export video from Premiere faster.

 

My question; is there a machine that could bring a 30-50%+ increase in export time, and is that machine a Mac or PC?

 

Additionally, are there specific Adobe speed tests I could run on my machine and compare with other rigs? I use Geekbench to measure performance between other computers, but I'd like something that specifically uses the Adobe products.

 

I've also considered trying to optimize my current setup (with Thunderbolt external hard drives, Raid or SDD hard drives, more RAM, etc) but wonder if buying a new computer, while more expensive, is better in the long run?

 

Thanks for any input you can offer!

 
Replies
  • Currently Being Moderated
    Dec 7, 2012 11:51 AM   in reply to legendofthegoose

    If you contact Bill Gehrke directly at ppbm@att.net he can probably direct you to a testing file we are developing to include Mac testing in a future release of PPBM6 or PPBM7. That may give you a very limited insight into your systems performance, due to a lack of comparable data, but anything is better than nothing.

     

    There are numerous options to improve on the performance you currently have.

     

    Go for an i7-3930K CPU, increase memory to 32 GB, use a GTX 660 Ti or better video card, use a dedicated raid controller and multiple disks, but these all entail moving to a PC and I'm not sure you want that.

     

    To see what kind of PC systems work, look at Benchmark Results and to see what kind of build is possible on the PC side, see Planning & Building a NLE System

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Dec 7, 2012 3:38 PM   in reply to legendofthegoose

    All I can speak about is the Mac side.  I have a MacPro with 8 cores, and I installed a GTX285 (Discontinued, but can be found online for a steal...more bang for the buck than the 4000's in my opinion)  So, CUDA is definitely not out of the question.  Export time is great.

     

    However, conventional wisdom is that the MacPros are going to be updated (long overdue) in the first part of next year...Apple is always tight-lipped about it, but I wouldn't sink a lot of money into a MacPro right now when updates are around the corner.

     

    So, maybe a PC is the right direction for you if you need something right away.

     
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  • Alex Gerulaitis
    490 posts
    Jun 9, 2009
    Currently Being Moderated
    Dec 7, 2012 5:20 PM   in reply to legendofthegoose

    My question; is there a machine that could bring a 30-50%+ increase in export time, and is that machine a Mac or PC?

    Either (if you mean decrease, hopefully): the current $1.5K iMac comes with GTX-650M which is supported by Adobe for GPU acceleration, and that will dramatically decrease your export times (with supported codecs - MPEG2, H.264). The $1,999 iMac comes with a better CPU, GPU and up to 32GB RAM - only nobody tested it yet for GPU hardware acceleration AFAIK.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Dec 8, 2012 12:59 PM   in reply to Alex Gerulaitis

    that will dramatically decrease your export times (with supported codecs - MPEG2, H.264).

     

    Actually the codec is irrelevant.  It's the effects that are accelerated.  And if any given editor is not using accelerated effects, then CUDA acceleration isn't going to help.

     
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