If you haven't got the new 27" iMac, then don't. Seriously!
If you're going to switch, switch for the right reasons. I can say this, because I'm a FCP user and a long time Mac user. But since I'm switching to CS5, I'd rather go with a PC, because I can get a substantially faster PC then a Mac for the same price. And like it or not, the PC version has some features that the Mac doesn't. Can you live without those features? It depends on your workflow. But me, I can't.... there is one in particular that struck a nerve.... 10-bit uncompressed 4:2:2 timeline... the PC has it... not the Mac. Plus, do you really want to work with a glossy screen? I know I don't!
The reasons are plentiful why I switched. On top of the reasons mentioned above, the biggest is the real-time capabilities with Mercury Playback Engine. Apple, aside from the MacPro, decided to no longer include nVidia graphics cards in their computers, that would allow you to use MPE (And with the MacPro, you have to buy an expensive Quadro 4000 separately and ditch the ATI card that comes with it).
The advantage with a PC is you can upgrade easily as time goes by. It's something I found hard to live with with my Macs.
From my research editing anything other than HDV needs i7 quad core. You also can't upgrade the iMac graphics card. I don't think it has eSata so you would be limited to FW800 for scratch drive, as the only Thunderbolt external HDD are way expensive.
In short the only Mac that can support PP5.5 is the Mac Pro. I switched to Windows for desktop editing becasue if Apple EOL Mac Pros than you would be SOL.
It is my personal belief that Apple want's to drop it's professional line, and stick to it's consumer products. Apple doesn't make much money in the video business as it probably once did. And most importantly, they don't listen to their customers. As a matter of fact, they are really good at telling us what we want and what we need without asking. This mentality, while doable in the consumer market... is a nightmare in the professional world. Look at iMovie Pro... oups, I mean FCP X... it's such a fiasco for professional editors. Adobe played their cards well with it's 50% rebate for FCP users.
I'm not trashing Apple. They do make excellent products. But it seems they've changed direction, and are concentrating solely on the phone, ipod and home computer market. Being a Mac professional user, I'm really dissapointed to be left out, and ignored.
I agree. It's amazing how successful Apple has become with it's phone, ipad, and thin note books. I've been using a 2000 PowerBook. The fist notebook with wireless Airport. Also had Firewire, PCI slot, and expansion bay. They was all years before USB2 and Windows didn't have wireless networking. I've been able to use the PCI slot for lots of stuff like the wireless N and USB 2. I've been able to repair it myself.
Now that has all changed. The new MacBook Airs are soldered together so that you have to send it back to have the battery replaced. All but the Mac Pros (desk tops) are this all in one design that is non upgradable. I needed a computer to last more than 3 years, which means I need to be able to repair it myself. The desk top is just more practical fo rme right now.
There was so much discontent with the FCPX that I wasn't comfortable investing too much with Macs. My entire family uses Macs now. It's great for them to have one phone number to call for customer support. I'm sure they don't know what RAM is. However, any big company like Apple or Adobe is going to discontiue any product that isn't profitable. Apple risk losing this base that has been very loyal. Not sure what they will do but FCPX can be run on the MacBook Pros, iMacs etc, so they are not developing any software that requires the Mac Pro.
They will probably mak a ton of money off FCPX. Maybe it would have been good for me. However I can always pick up a Macbook and FCPX if I need one. I got the education discount for Adobe so I'm going with Adobe on Windows. Kind of like Apple has everything under one tent, Adobe suit also has everything under one tent for creative applicaitons. So far Windows 7 has exceeded my expectations. Both OSX and Windows 7 are very good. Apple offers 3 hardware desk top computers starting a 3k, Windows has more than three desk top hardware options.