Been awhile since I've posted on here and now have a burning question- I have been having success the last few years with PE 3 on an HP multimedia computer with a firewire connection using Sony miniDV video cameras so all my footage is on miniDV tape currently. I plan to buy a new laptop and PE 8 in the very near future and need some current advice on the computer and PE.
Our old HP desktop computer is dying and too slow for just about anything anymore.. in shopping for new laptops I have found that Firewire is hard to find, and only some of the Sony VAIOs in the $1000 and up range come with a Firewire port anymore, and it is a Firewire 400, 4 pin port, not the 6 pin like on our HP desktop. I imagine I could connect the 4 pin of the camera to the 4 pin on the computer and it should work, right?
Most new laptops seem to have SATA ports now, too. I have been out of it for so long with regard to the upgraded PE versions, and the new video camera formats such as HD, etc. that I wonder if I should hold out for a laptop with a Firewire port for our miniDV tapes, or move on to a newer technology and forget the Firewire. I know that Steve G has advocated for Firewire in his very useful postings, and I am thus tempted to buy the Sony VAIO with the 400, 4 pin port. Some other laptops come with open PCMIA slots and I believe I could also buy a Firewire card to add into those but am not sure how to find the right one and do it successfully. Also I've heard of a Firewire to USB hub that might work, although using a hub does not sound as good to me as a direct FW connection.
I almost bought the VAIO today, but the sales clerk at BestBuys let slip that most current models were being superceded by new models to come out soon, so I will wait and see what is around the corner before buying. And in that time I will get up to speed on PE8 using Steve's books and other resources.
Any advice on how to proceed on computer and Firewire (and type of video camera, for that matter, if upgrade from miniDV is recommended) are much appreciated!
Probably the biggest limitation with any laptop are the ability to have more than one HDD. I feel that 2x is the minimum for doing any video editing, and 3x is better. Next, many laptops use embedded Intel graphics chips, and I find these to be good chips, BUT with zero driver support, and that is a deal-breaker for me. If the laptop did not offer an nVidia, or ATI chip, I would pass, in a heartbeat.
As for the connections, there are tons of ExpressCards, that will provide you with all sorts of FW connections.