A MBP does not offer 3 physical 7200 RPM SATA disks, which is about minimum for editing, does it? 4 GB is absolute bare minimum for easier to edit material. For your material the minimum would be around 8 GB.
What i7 do you have? A 9xx or less? If less, then that is another handicap.
Cheers for the speedy reply, unfortunately I think I can see where this one is going and it ends with me needing a new machine
I can upgrade to 8Gb RAM but my hardrive runs at 5400 and I have a feeling the processor is actually an i5 rather than an i7 (System profiler list Intel 5 Series Chipset) so I don't know if it would make a lot of difference.
I knew I might have issues editing on a laptop but what is weird is that I recently made a film of similar length and size that a friend edited on his MBP which is several years old and much lower spec using Final Cut and while it was a little slow and dropped a few frames here and there it worked fine generally. I also edited an hour long film on my old iMac (also in FCP) with no problems at all.
Does Prem handle media significantly differently to FCP that one would run smooth where the other hangs and becomes unusable?
I have had a good poke around with my project and it seems that it actually only hangs when I try to open 2 of the 6 sequences and everywhere else it runs ok and I can work pretty smoothly so I wonder if something has got corrupted along the way. The problems seemed to come on very suddenly after a period of smooth working.
Sorry for rambling a bit. The more I read in to the subject the more I realise how little I know about it and it is kind of daunting.
Again, cheers for your help and any advice you can give.
First, take a look at the system requirements for Mac here: http://www.adobe.com/products/premiere/systemreqs/
Editing systems, like Premiere, typically require a second drive to store, capture and playback media. It sounds like you are editing off of your system drive which may cause the issues you are talking about. Both the system drive and the scratch drive should run at 7200 rpm.
As far as your friend getting better performance with Final Cut Pro on an older Mac, I would be willing to bet that it was not Canon 5D or 7D footage, which uses the H.264 codec—not a friendly one for editing. Premiere's performance also benefits from certain graphics cards, as well. If you don't have one of those cards in your Mac, you will not be able to take full advantage of the Mercury Playback engine.
If you are having decent performance, followed by a period of instability, it could also be lack of RAM. When you begin having issues, restart the computer and note the behavior then. If performance is peppy once more, you'll need to add more RAM to your Mac.
Best of luck!
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The i5 is only a dual core CPU with 8 MB level 3 cache and no HT. Your single disk is a 5400 RPM disk and your memory, 4 GB, is about minimum requirements. All in all, your system is below minimum requirements for H.264 material, which is about the most taxing there is on a computer these days.
In comparison, an i7-920/930/950 is quad core with HT and 12 MB level3 cache. Number of cores and size of the cache are crucial for H.264 performance. Add the amount of memory, where the suggested amount is 12 GB for a decent system, and where you have 4 GB, and it will be logical that during decoding and encoding of your material, the memory starved system needs to use virtual memory on a single slow disk. There are bottlenecks all over the place.
If you were to use standard def DV material, you would not have unsurmountable problems. An extra external eSATA 7200 disk would probable help. Likely, as was pointed out to you, your friend used a less taxing codec on his FCP machine.
It is only for PC currently, but if you look at the results of the PPBM5 benchmark http://ppbm5.com/Benchmark5.html your results would be around comparable to the bottom results, around 30 - 35 times slower than the top machines or worse given your slow disk.
Thanks all, for the responses.
I had a feeling I would get replies like this and am most likely going to start looking in to getting a dedicated editing machine as this is something I want to get more in to in the future.
Are there any good resources for people who want to set up a system but know (as you may have gathered ) very little about the subject? I use computers professionally and am fairly knowledgable but am new to the video editing side of things and trying to gather as much info as possible.
Thanks again. You have all been very helpful
If you go to the Hardware forum http://forums.adobe.com/community/premiere/hardware_forum?view=discussions&start=0 and click on the Overview tab there is a drop down box with a number of links to articles that may be of much interest. Additionally there are lots of threads about computer configurations in different price brackets in various threads. Just have a look.