19 Replies Latest reply on Jul 17, 2010 11:58 AM by Paul787

    External Drive Recommendation for Video Editing

    Bob Ward Level 1

      I posted a few weeks ago about how to convert VHS tapes to DVDs.  Got several valuable suggestions.

       

      I have decided to go with the Canopus ADVC 110.  Due to the large file size that will accompany the DV AVI files, everyone said I will need large multiple hard drives.  I have a WD Caviar 640 GB internal drive on a new computer that only contains my flight simulators, so it is mostly empty.

       

      My question is what is a good reliable (and fast) external hard drive that I could use with my video editing files?  My computer has both USB 2 and FireWire connections, plus an eSATA port.  I am assuming the FireWire or eSATA connection will be the way to go.  I will probably be looking at a 1 TB drive.  Are the Western Digital and Seagate external drives solid candidates for my video editing?  I don't want to install another internal drive because it will probably void my 3-year warranty on a 3-month old computer.

       

      Bob

        • 1. Re: External Drive Recommendation for Video Editing
          Steve Grisetti Adobe Community Professional

          With today's computer hardware, it's hard to make a bad decision, Bob. htttp://newegg.com is a favorite resource on Muvipix.com.

           

          Almost any external hard drive will do. A USB 2 should be just fine -- and 500 gig will hold several hours of video, while a 1 terrabyte (available or around $100) is even better.

           

          I wouldn't worry much about brand. You really can't make a bad decision here. Pretty any brand they sell at NewEgg is good and dependable. So don't be afraid to shop for price. Their site is loaded with great deals!

           

          The main thing to remember is that, once you get this drive, format it to NTFS. Drives are formatted FAT32 by default, but FAT32 drives have a file size limitation that often chokes video work.

          • 2. Re: External Drive Recommendation for Video Editing
            the_wine_snob Level 9

            Bob,

             

            I you wish to edit to/from, and not just archive to it, Copying the Assets to an internal HDD for editing, I strongly recommend a FW-800 as the minimum. An eSATA would be even better, because it will connect at virtually the speed of your internals.

             

            Two things to consider and to check:

             

            1.) Check your system's BIOS to make sure that it can work with either FW-800, or eSATA

             

            2.) Chances are good that you do not have either an FW-800, or eSATA connection, so you would need to buy a PCI/PCIe card with those connections and controller chips. If this is the case, I would go with the eSATA. The cost of controller/connection cards will not be that different, so you may as well go with the fastest connection.

             

            Western Digital does several large externals, with multiple connection types, up to and including eSATA.

             

            Another similar option would be to get an eSATA enclosure and just add what would normally be internal SATA drives. Some of these enclosures allow for those HDD's to be hot-swapped, and these can be purchased from 2x to 32x bays, so that one could easily end up with ~ 48TB of storage, all in one place, and with extra "carriages" for the HDD's could have an infinite number, that are just plugged-in, or swapped out.

             

            When the USB 2.0 externals came out, I tried editing to/from, and found two issues: the USB 2.0 connection is very slow. With an even moderately fast computer, read/write errors abounded, especially the dreaded Delayed Write Failure. Many were experiencing this issue with various brands of USB's. Also, they were painfully slow. FW-400's were more stable, but not THAT much faster. It was not until FW-800, that I was finally satisfied that I could actually use the external in my editing workflow. Now, I am heavily invested in FW-800's, or I would go with eSATA myself. Unfortunately, my workstation has no more PCI/PCIe slots, so I could not add an eSATA card. My new workstation will have both FW-800 & eSATA (plus the normal FW-400 & USB connections).

             

            Hope that helps, and good luck,

             

            Hunt

            • 3. Re: External Drive Recommendation for Video Editing
              Steve Grisetti Adobe Community Professional

              Wow, Hunt! You set some very high standards for your equipment!

               

              I still say, for video editing with Premiere Elements, you don't need AlienWare, top-of-the-line equipment. Most of today's multi-core computers and 7800x USB 2 drives are more than adequate.

               

              Have you found that not to be the case?

              • 4. Re: External Drive Recommendation for Video Editing
                the_wine_snob Level 9

                Steve,

                 

                After the issues that I had with early USB 2.0's (experienced by many hundreds of other users too), I have not gone back to see if things have improved with newer externals. Having read/write errors did it for me. Even when I did not experience those, the speed was just so very slow - about like trying to edit to/from my gigabit NAS. The FW-400's were more stable, but still so slow, that I was always waiting for them to "catch up." With the FW-800's, things are just fine now, whether on the laptop, or the workstation.

                 

                Just my observations,

                 

                Hunt

                • 5. Re: External Drive Recommendation for Video Editing
                  Bob Ward Level 1

                  Steve, Bill,

                   

                  Thanks for the recommendations.  I have a new computer that I will be doing this video work on.  It has both Firewire & eSATA ports, along with many USB 2 ports.  So I can go with the eSATA drive with no problem.  I will also have to get a WIN7 64bit compatible version of Premiere Elements, I am assuming version 8 will suffice in this regard.

                   

                  As an interesting side-note, I called the company that I was originally considering to give my VHS tapes to for conversion to DVD and they said that they convert to MPEG4, rather than DV AVI.  From what I have been reading on this forum, DV AVI is the way to go.  I was surprised that with all the "high-end" professional equipment this studio claims to use, that they would not be able to give me a DV AVI file.

                   

                  Bob

                  • 6. Re: External Drive Recommendation for Video Editing
                    the_wine_snob Level 9

                    Well, the issue is deliverability of the resulting digitized file. DV-AVI is very lightly compressed, so that 1 hour of Duration = ~ 13GB, too large for even a DVD-9 (DL). These would only fit onto a BD.

                     

                    The MPEG-4 compresses the files so that they will fit onto a DVD-Data, and that is why the do it. Yes, the quality suffers, but I presume that the assumption is that the original material is VHS, so what does some quality loss mean? To me, quite a bit of difference. I want to get the best possible digital files, so that when I do Burn to DVD-Video (compressed to MPEG-2), the resultant quality loss will be minimal.

                     

                    Now, a good workflow would be to digitize to a mini DV tape, but then the user needs to have a mini DV tape camera, or deck, to get that into the computer. For telecine work, digitizing from film, that would be the only workflow that I would accept, but then I have the equipment on my end to work with those mini DV tapes, so it's a non-issue.

                     

                    By doing the digitization yourself, you can Capture to DV-AVI (yes, the files are large, but very good), and then the only compression comes at the very end, when you Burn your DVD-Video.

                     

                    Good luck,

                     

                    Hunt

                    • 7. Re: External Drive Recommendation for Video Editing
                      Steve Grisetti Adobe Community Professional

                      I agree with Hunt.  The issue is portability -- and they want to give you MP4s because they're likely coming off a Mac platform and H.264 is the compression of choice for small, high-quality files.

                       

                      Unfortunately, you'll probably have challenges using an MP4 directly in Premier Elements, so you'll be wise to convert it back to DV-AVI before you bring it into the program.

                       

                      The best program for doing this is Quicktime Pro, which sells for $29 from Apple. The FAQs to the right of this forum list some alternative, free programs that will also make the conversion for you (Super, for instance). But $29 is a great deal for a program that is designed to work with MP4s and other Mac output and convert it to DV-AVIs.

                      • 8. Re: External Drive Recommendation for Video Editing
                        John T Smith Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                        >WIN7 64bit compatible version of Premiere Elements, I am assuming version 8 will suffice

                         

                        Don't assume anything... read first !!!

                         

                        There seem to be problems with V8... of course, people who don't have problems don't post, so it may be that many people are happy with V8 and only the UNhappy people ask for help

                         

                        W7 64bit is not total joy... which may just be that it is still new so all the device drivers have not caught up

                         

                        PreEl is still 32bits, so you will need to either run in compatibility mode, or buy W7 64bit PRO and use the virtual XP mode

                        http://www.microsoft.com/windows/virtual-pc/download.aspx

                        • 9. Re: External Drive Recommendation for Video Editing
                          Bob Ward Level 1

                          Steve,

                           

                          I will be doing the conversion myself using the Canopus ADVC 110.  So I will be converting to DV AVI.  I just mentioned the MPEG4 as a side note, thinking that a commercial company would have been able to give me DV AVI file.  But now that you & Bill have explained the portability issue, I understand their reason for telling me that their end-product would have been in MPEG4 format.

                           

                          Bob

                          • 10. Re: External Drive Recommendation for Video Editing
                            Bob Ward Level 1

                            John,

                             

                            I was afraid that I might hear something like that.  I have WIN 7 Pro.  I already have the XP compatibility mode installed.  So I should be ok.

                             

                            Thanks for the heads-up.

                             

                            Bob

                            • 11. Re: External Drive Recommendation for Video Editing
                              Steve Grisetti Adobe Community Professional

                              Unfortunately, Bob, the issues John is talking about aren't related to compatibility with the operating system. Windows 7 is perfectly capable of operating in 32-bit compatibility mode.

                               

                              The issue seems to be with the 64-bit drivers that the program and the operating system are working with. They may eventually become fully 32-bit compatiblle -- but a lot of people are having trouble, especially with version 8.

                               

                              It might be wise to test Premiere Elements on your computer before commit to buying it.

                              • 12. Re: External Drive Recommendation for Video Editing
                                Bob Ward Level 1

                                Steve,

                                 

                                Now I am confused.  I thought WIN7 XP compatibility mode was 32-bit.  In other words, Pre Elements 8 would think it is being run in a 32-bit XP OS, which should not be any different from running the program on my old XP machine.

                                 

                                What am I missing here?

                                 

                                Bob

                                • 13. Re: External Drive Recommendation for Video Editing
                                  Steve Grisetti Adobe Community Professional

                                  Unless you're talking about a double-boot system that can boot into Windows 7 or XP, compatibility mode just means you're operating within an XP shell -- but still on the same Windows 7 64-bit operating system. Which means you'll still probably have the same issues with those incompatible drivers.

                                   

                                  Either way, you'll know if you download a trial Premiere Elements onto your computer before you buy it.

                                  • 14. Re: External Drive Recommendation for Video Editing
                                    the_wine_snob Level 9

                                    Right now, the big hope is that by Win7-64 SP1, many of the driver issues will be resolved.

                                     

                                    Good luck to all,

                                     

                                    Hunt

                                    • 15. Re: External Drive Recommendation for Video Editing
                                      Bob Ward Level 1

                                      Steve,

                                       

                                      I am even more confused now.  From what I have read on the Internet, XP Compatibility Mode (within WIN 7) is a 32 bit OS using 32 bit drivers.  So I do not see where the WIN 7 64 bit drivers would create an issue.

                                       

                                      Also, Adobe's website states that Premiere Elements 8.0 is Win 7 compatible.  Are they not being truthful on this matter?

                                       

                                      I will admit to not being a computer wizard, so I may be missing some of the intricate details of how Win 7 and XP Compatibility mode work together, but a quick review of Internet posts would certainly lead the average computer user to conclude that there should be no problems running Premiere Elements 8.0 in either Win 7 or in the XP Compatibility mode shell.

                                       

                                      Guess I will download the trial version and see what happens.

                                       

                                      Thanks,

                                       

                                      Bob

                                      • 16. Re: External Drive Recommendation for Video Editing
                                        big sandy lake Level 1

                                        don't know if this will add to the confusion but when I upgraded to win7 my disk gave me a choice to either install the 32 bit version or the 64 bit . I knew I would be usinhg PRE8 so I chose the 32 bit install.

                                         

                                        Tom

                                        • 17. Re: External Drive Recommendation for Video Editing
                                          Cyprus Hector

                                          How have you got on using the ADVC 110? I've recently purchased the ADVC-55 and connected it to my PC via the firewire connection which works well. I converted a Hi8 video tape to Premiere 7 (Win 7 64 bit). The only issue I've had is that it has coverted the entire 1 hour+ tape to the computer but not the breaks bewteen shots so that inserting a scene change has to be done via the scene line and not the timeline.

                                          • 18. Re: External Drive Recommendation for Video Editing
                                            Bob Ward Level 1

                                            The ADVC 110 worked flawlessly for me.  I converted 25 VHS tapes to DV AVI format with no problems.

                                             

                                            I connected the ADVC 110 to my computer via the Firewire port and connected a LaCie 1TB external hard drive to the computer via an eSata port.

                                             

                                            I used the WinDV utility program for the digital conversion.  My OS is Windows 7 Pro, 64-bit.

                                             

                                            I set the WinDV menu option to break scenes at roughly every 15-minutes so that I did not end up with one huge digital file from each converted tape.

                                             

                                            My next step is to decide which movie editing program to buy so that I can edit the converted digital files.  Need something that will work with my 64-bit OS.  Too much bad press on Adobe Pre8, might try to get a copy of Pre7 and see how that works.

                                             

                                            Bob

                                            • 19. Re: External Drive Recommendation for Video Editing
                                              Paul787 Level 3

                                              Cyprus, quite a few users, myself included, use a program called Scenalyzer for capturing analog to digital files as it has an optical scene detection feature so that one doesn't get huge 13 gb (or in my case, 26 gb DV-AVI files).

                                               

                                              I believe that Scenalyzer can also analyze already captured files too and break the large DV-AVI's into more manageable size files.

                                               

                                              Hope this is of some assistance.