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Gear Talk => Software & Accessories => Topic started by: eturkyolu on March 11, 2013, 08:07:40 PM

Title: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: eturkyolu on March 11, 2013, 08:07:40 PM
Hi,
I am sort of a mediocre video maker. I write, shoot, and edit everything myself. This past year I have put more passion into film making. I have bought new equipment and been watching a lot of videos from professional film makers and their tutorials.

However, the one major problem I have right now is my computer. Right now for editing I use an old Lenovo PC which barely does the job. For one I work on an Adobe Platform. On my current PC I can't operate AE without having to render the entire project every 10 seconds so it doesn't lag. The same with Premiere. Although I upgraded my Video Card a couple years ago, I finally need to ditch this computer.

I've spoken with a couple of film maker friends and they each said something different, So I've come to a conclusion with three options. 1) I can get the new 27" iMac with custom hardware which comes to about $3,500 2) Get a MacBook Pro with the Retina Display with custom hardware which also is in the $3,500 range and 3) Build a custom PC with $3,500. Right now the MacPro is not considered as one of my options due to very high pricing with custom hardware.

Now, Although I work on an Adobe Platform, I would like to try Final Cut. But that is not really that important. Also, eventually I would like to start 3D modeling with 3Ds Max or similar, which I heard to be a PC software.

What I would like to know is what each of these 3 options are good for. I am really confused and I need to purchase something before the beginning of April. THANK YOU! :)

Also I Forgot to mention, right now I shoot with a Sony Nx5u and the Canon 5D Mark lll but eventually I will upgrade to something like either the BlackMagic or the RED. the computer would need to support these formats without lag and possibly support something like DaVinci Resolve for color correcting.
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: bseitz234 on March 11, 2013, 08:31:16 PM
Disclaimer: I have not really pushed the limits of video editing. I am somewhat of a tech geek, and have asked CS6 to do some 3d renders and high def video, but always playing around.

I've had a really great experience with my 27" iMac. It's a late 2010 model, 2.93 GHz 4core, 12GB RAM, Radeon 5750 w/ 1GB. CS6 works great, although sometimes I come close to bumping up against the RAM I have- so I might recommend 16GB or more. But as far as your current workflow, I think the iMac would do nicely. Two big problems with the macbook pro: screen size, and heat. A friend of mine has the retina pro, and it gets quite hot when working hard. The larger enclosure of the desktop helps get around this. There's also absolutely something to be said for that 27" display: I have both the iMac and a non-retina MBP, and 15" never felt small until I had the desktop.

As far as the PC option, I have to say, I don't know nearly as much, although performance specs are performance specs. If you can get a new i7 processor, at least 16GB of RAM, and a good video card and display, I imagine you'd be happy. Ultimately, that's a question that a lot of people will weigh in on, and you have to decide on for yourself. Would you rather try final cut, or PC-only-3D software? I am a very happy mac user, and would recommend the platform to a lot of people, but there are reasons to go PC, and you just have to weigh the pros and cons of each for yourself.
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: Cptn Rigo on March 11, 2013, 08:38:05 PM
Hi

First of all, I don't want to enter to the Mac vs PC, I use both (Day job, Game developer with PC, Night job App developer with Mac).

the Mac advantage is that everything will work at arrival, no problems... 27 inch beautiful screen, all ok...

the PC advantage is that 3500 dlls buy a MONSTER of pc, (think about a 2014/2015 mac release), and the best of all is that this computer will be upgradeable, and with the spare cash you can bought a video card to avoid the rendering times of the video.

I choose the PC way (16 gigs of ram + SSD its a dream), good luck  :)

Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: STEMI_RN on March 11, 2013, 08:49:39 PM
All about specs and familiarity. If you have been using PC, I recommend sticking with it, otherwise you may face a rather steep learning curve.  If you have the ability (or a friend with the ability) to build the PC from scratch, you can get a MONSTER PC that would cost twice as much in MAC. AND you're talking about adding another $1000 for Final Cut Pro.  Stick with the PC.  I've used both and it all boils down to personal preference.
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: RLPhoto on March 11, 2013, 08:52:59 PM
With 3500$ in a Win7 Pro machine, you can get a monster of a machine. I mean like the equivalent mac would cost 6000$+... Add two Dell 27" Ultrasharps, you'll be set for 5 years easily. I'm still using my machine I built in 2006, runs fantastic!

You can run all your adobe apps Plus you can even Run AVID for serious production work if needed. FCP is not really needed anymore. Check it out.

http://www.avid.com/US/products/avid-ds#overview (http://www.avid.com/US/products/avid-ds#overview)

Mac's are good for COCOA coding and App production. They also look pretty but is it worth it for video and still production anymore? To me, no but you must decide for yourself.



Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: bycostello on March 11, 2013, 09:03:33 PM
i'm a mac user...  the benefits of a mac are they are beautiful machines.... the benefits of a pc is that you'll get way more bang for your buck.. 

so pretty or plastic...
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: Brand B on March 11, 2013, 09:18:28 PM
AND you're talking about adding another $1000 for Final Cut Pro. 

It sounds like a PC would be a better choice.  But FCPX is $300, not $1000.
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: sociophilo on March 11, 2013, 09:51:43 PM
I made an account just to post to this thread ... I've been having this war with myself for the last 6 months, and I will tell you about my journey.

I needed a mobile work-station as my work takes me on the go more often than not. So a laptop is what I needed (i only mention this because it is more expensive than an equal power PC)

So for $2000.00 this is what I bought.

i7-3630 2.4 ghz (overclockable - this means that you can push the processor to a higher speed, max 3.2)
16 gigs of ram (expendable to 32 for $100).
Full HD, 95% colour gamut screen
1.5 gig GTX670 nvidia graphics card (which takes advantage of Adobe's mercury engine speeding S____ up to levels unheard of)

And 2 SSD drives.
1 boot drive (256 GB - Crucial)
1 work drive (512 GB - crucial)

----
And this is in a laptop, so there is a higher cost for all of this stuff. Go to apple's website and insert these specifications in one iMac and you'll see how high the cost is. Furthermore, go to a website like newegg.com or xoticpc.com and do some research on how to build computers and you will save hundreds of dollars and achieve the highest level of performance.

Websites like www.reddit.com/r/suggestalaptop (http://www.reddit.com/r/suggestalaptop) or www.reddit.com/r/buildapc (http://www.reddit.com/r/buildapc) can greatly help you through the process.

---

Personally, I think macs are fun computers used by regular people to do regular things. When you want top quality, and I mean TOP quality, your best option is to go non-apple. Apple limits your future-proofing and their products are insanely expensive.

--
sp
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: bvukich on March 11, 2013, 10:08:53 PM
You definitely get more bang for the buck with a PC.  I don't do video, but here's the base for my new PC I'm building for photo editing:

Shuttle SZ77R5 http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B007UZO3F6 (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B007UZO3F6)
Intel Core i7-3770 http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B007SZ0EHE (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B007SZ0EHE)
32GB DDR3 1600 MHz http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0068ZWZY0 (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0068ZWZY0)
Crucial m4 256GB SSD http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0085J17UA (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0085J17UA)
GeForce GTX 650 http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00966IU4M (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00966IU4M)

~$1150

I haven't decided which direction I want to go on monitors yet, probably either a pair of Dell U2410 or U2412M monitors.  Those are about $400 and $300 each respectively.  Or I may go with a single 30".  I'd prefer 27" but I insist on a 16:10 display, so that's not happening.
Bulk storage will be a few 3TB USB3 drives (which are only about $110 each these days).

All said and done I'm looking at about $2k and change, which doesn't get you much in the Apple world.
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: Niterider on March 11, 2013, 10:31:51 PM
You definitely get more bang for the buck with a PC.  I don't do video, but here's the base for my new PC I'm building for photo editing:

Shuttle SZ77R5 http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B007UZO3F6 (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B007UZO3F6)
Intel Core i7-3770 http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B007SZ0EHE (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B007SZ0EHE)
32GB DDR3 1600 MHz http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0068ZWZY0 (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0068ZWZY0)
Crucial m4 256GB SSD http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0085J17UA (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0085J17UA)
GeForce GTX 650 http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00966IU4M (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00966IU4M)

~$1150

I haven't decided which direction I want to go on monitors yet, probably either a pair of Dell U2410 or U2412M monitors.  Those are about $400 and $300 each respectively.  Or I may go with a single 30".  I'd prefer 27" but I insist on a 16:10 display, so that's not happening.
Bulk storage will be a few 3TB USB3 drives (which are only about $110 each these days).

All said and done I'm looking at about $2k and change, which doesn't get you much in the Apple world.

Thats a solid build. I hope you dont mind, but I may propose a slightly different setup. The thing I value most in a custom built computer is the motherboard. The option to choose from the thousands on the marker make it possible to customize everything to the fullest. I would start with a Corsair 300R/Antec 900 or others depending on your budget. Those cases are optimized for airflow and will allow for the coolest temperatures. Couple that with a 500-750w power supply (depending upon needs). I recently built a computer where I got a corsair 300R and a corsair 650w builder power supply together for $75, but those deals are hard to find. Then all you have left to match the bare bones setup is a motherboard. The best for the price is the asrock z77 extreme4 (or extreme 6 depending upon needs). I promise you would not be disappointed with this setup.

Also, check out the intel i7-3770k processor. For barely any more money, you have full control of the overclocking capabilities. Place a cooler master hyper 212 heatsink on that with arctic silver thermal compound and the temperatures will be unbelievably low.

Whichever route you go, have a great time building it!
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: GuyWithCamera on March 11, 2013, 10:47:29 PM
The current top of the line iMacs will be more than enough to do video editing, and of course any PC with comparable specs will be too. The components are important, but I believe the OS is just as important. I use both Mac and PC daily. Although I do not consider myself an Apple fanboy, I do prefer Mac OS a bit more. Here's my opinion:

PC Pros:
-Cheaper for comparable specs
-Highly customizable in terms of hardware
-Easier to upgrade hardware
-3D Studio Max

Mac Pros:
-Ease of use
-Clean UI & UX
-Final Cut Pro
-Run Windows via Bootcamp or VM softwares

If you choose a PC, you'll definitely get more bang for your buck. If you already have the Adobe Creative Suite, for the PC, that's even more money you'll save. I believe Adobe charges a fee to switch from a PC license to a Mac license.

If you switch over to a Mac, even if you've never used one before, you'll learn very fast. I feel it's more intuitive than a PC. Also, you can install Windows on your Mac and run it like a normal PC, if you do via Bootcamp or run it as a virtual machine in your Mac using softwares like Parallel.

Whichever you choose, I don't think you could go wrong if you're willing to invest that much in it. Good luck to ya.
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: Mt Spokane Photography on March 11, 2013, 11:07:03 PM
Here is a interesting interview with Adobe discussing Premiere Pro. and FCP X.  They are quite different in what you can do with them.  Its from Adobe's point of view, but investigate what they say about needing more software to use with FCP X if you want high end audio editing or other features.
 
http://www.hdvideopro.com/blog/editor/2012/01/adobes-creative-suite-5-5-wins-hdvideopros-2011-product-of-the-year-whats-in-store-for-2012.html (http://www.hdvideopro.com/blog/editor/2012/01/adobes-creative-suite-5-5-wins-hdvideopros-2011-product-of-the-year-whats-in-store-for-2012.html)
 

It depends on what you need and are willing to spend.
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: samhodde on March 11, 2013, 11:30:14 PM
As somebody who recently jumped shipped from FCP 7 to the CS6 Adobe suite I would say don't buy a PC just to use FCP. Apple took a huge dive with FCPX and released iMovie with a few more features.

If you're looking for a desktop, go PC for sure. A everybody else has said you will absolutely get more bang for your buck. I have a mid 2011 MacBook Pro that I use for all of my personal work and a custom built PC desktop that I use at work. The MacBook is great when I want to be mobile and take my work with me, but when that isn't necessary the PC desktop is great. Use the money that you'll save and buy another monitor.
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: samhodde on March 11, 2013, 11:32:25 PM
Regardless of how you feel about Conan, and his hair, this video sums up many editors experiences with FCPX.

Conan O'Brien Editors: Apple Final Cut Pro X Is Easy To Use (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LxKYuF9pENQ#ws)
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: KKCFamilyman on March 11, 2013, 11:46:52 PM
Spec out an i7 pc that you can custom build. ($700-1000)
I like the hp zr24 series ips display $360 ish
Get a 15" macbook pro retina 256gb i7 2.3ghz at microcenter.com or bestbuy for $1900 and most have great condition open box ones for $1700.

Get a 1tb usb3 external for the storage the mac lacks. And it runs windows well in bootcamp. I am running it now with no issues.

You can acheive that with $3500. Also if your monitor dies replace it. If you need a bigger hd or video card get it. You will be stuck with an imac.
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: keemikpoiss on March 12, 2013, 12:05:14 AM
Quote
Build a custom PC with $3,500

Disclaimer: I like shopping with other people's money.    So, here is how I would spend $3500:

MOBO:             ASUS Sabertooth X79 LGA 2011 (w/1394 port)            $360
CPU:                Intel Core i7-3930K Sandy Bridge-E (6-core)                $540
CPU cooler:   CORSAIR Hydro series H50                                               $60
RAM:                CORSAIR Dominator 16GB DDR3 1600 (4 x 4 GB)     $180
VIDEO:            NVIDIA Quadro 2000  1GB GDDR5                                 $390
SDD:               Samsung 840 PRO 256 GB                                              $240
Storage:  Hardware RAID-5 with 3 disks
                         3X WD VelociRaptor 500GB 10000 RPM 6GB/s          $450
                         Adaptec RAID 6405 4 ports 512 mb cache 6GB/s      $375
Case:              Antec P280 Super Mid Tower                                           $110
PSU:               CORSAIR HX Series HX750 750W                                 $140
Input:              Logitech MK550 Black USB RF Wireless                        $70
Display:         Dell U2413                                                                           $575

TOTAL:                                                                                                        $3490

P.S. I built a cheaper/weaker version of a similar setup for Photoshop and Premiere work last Summer for myself and have been most happy with responsiveness and performance.

P.S.2 Just saw that faster and less power-hungry Kepler-based Quadro cards were announced and will be available later in March for $599.  Would thus love to suggest NVIDIA┬« Quadro┬« K2000 2GB GDDR5 but this breaks the budget.
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: that1guyy on March 12, 2013, 12:22:34 AM
Regardless of how you feel about Conan, and his hair, this video sums up many editors experiences with FCPX.

Conan O'Brien Editors: Apple Final Cut Pro X Is Easy To Use (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LxKYuF9pENQ#ws)

It's been over a year since FCPX released, and Apple has restored all missing features and added a few more awesome ones. Anyone who says FCPX isn't a professional software suite is ignorant and probably hasn't touched the software recently. It is quite fast.
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: lilmsmaggie on March 12, 2013, 01:34:35 AM
I recently built my own photo editing PC and then helped my nephew build one for himself.

I think you can build a PC that will do what you want.  You may even discover that you need two.  But it just depends on your needs.  Do you need mobility or does a workstation make more sense?  Do you have the time and patience for a DIY computer build project?  Its not exactly difficult and shouldn't take more than 8 hrs. start to finish.

Two problems with the iMac and the MacBook Pro or laptop.  Heat and upgrade path.   Think long-term use.

Heat is a computers worst enemy.

With a desktop/workstation, its much easier to upgrade or expand when you have the cash and time.
If you decide to go Mac, go with a Mac Pro.  You might decide you need and/or like the flexibility and mobility a laptop gives you.  Work on the go, final edits on Mac Pro ...  all comes down on how you want to work.

Here's a DIY option to the Mac Pro:  http://www.motherboards.org/category/877/mac-killer (http://www.motherboards.org/category/877/mac-killer)

Use Newegg, Microcenter and Amazon to source parts.  I like using Newegg because you can place items in a cart as a list with a name for example:  BuildOne and save it latter for comparison or part substitution.  This way, you can source the parts on Newegg, and compare the costs of different configurations.

After about a month of researching and comparing costs, I believe I spent less than $1700 last year on my particular build.  Granted I caught a few sales but it just goes to show that you don't have to spend $3500 unless you really want to.


Motherboard:  ASUS Maximus Gene V microATX
CPU:                  Intel Core i5 3570K 3.4Ghz
CPU Cooler:     Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO
Memory:          16 GB G.Skill Ripjaws X series DDR3
GPU:                 EVGA GeForce GTX 570
Boot Drive:      Samsung 840 series 256GB SSD
HDD1:              Western Digital Black 2 TB 7200 rpm
HDD2:              Western Digital Green 2 TB Intellipower
Optical Drive:   ASUS 24x DVD burner
Power Supply: Seasonic X650 Gold
Case:                 Silverstone Temjin TJ04-E (comes standard with 3 case fans)

I went with a microATX gaming board and a mid tower case for features, air flow and ease of cable management.   The mobo will handle dual GPU's to handle video demands and supports 32GB of memory.

The case isn't exactly a tool free case but its USB 3.0 compatible and I liked it.  I may decide to add another SSD as a scratch disk for Photoshop and/or LR4.

If you feel comfortable DIY, I say go it.  For video editing, I'd go with the i7 3770K and 32GB of memory.

Good luck and have fun.
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: bvukich on March 12, 2013, 01:55:59 AM
You definitely get more bang for the buck with a PC.  I don't do video, but here's the base for my new PC I'm building for photo editing:

Shuttle SZ77R5 http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B007UZO3F6 (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B007UZO3F6)
Intel Core i7-3770 http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B007SZ0EHE (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B007SZ0EHE)
32GB DDR3 1600 MHz http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0068ZWZY0 (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0068ZWZY0)
Crucial m4 256GB SSD http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0085J17UA (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0085J17UA)
GeForce GTX 650 http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00966IU4M (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00966IU4M)

~$1150

I haven't decided which direction I want to go on monitors yet, probably either a pair of Dell U2410 or U2412M monitors.  Those are about $400 and $300 each respectively.  Or I may go with a single 30".  I'd prefer 27" but I insist on a 16:10 display, so that's not happening.
Bulk storage will be a few 3TB USB3 drives (which are only about $110 each these days).

All said and done I'm looking at about $2k and change, which doesn't get you much in the Apple world.

Thats a solid build. I hope you dont mind, but I may propose a slightly different setup. The thing I value most in a custom built computer is the motherboard. The option to choose from the thousands on the marker make it possible to customize everything to the fullest. I would start with a Corsair 300R/Antec 900 or others depending on your budget. Those cases are optimized for airflow and will allow for the coolest temperatures. Couple that with a 500-750w power supply (depending upon needs). I recently built a computer where I got a corsair 300R and a corsair 650w builder power supply together for $75, but those deals are hard to find. Then all you have left to match the bare bones setup is a motherboard. The best for the price is the asrock z77 extreme4 (or extreme 6 depending upon needs). I promise you would not be disappointed with this setup.

Also, check out the intel i7-3770k processor. For barely any more money, you have full control of the overclocking capabilities. Place a cooler master hyper 212 heatsink on that with arctic silver thermal compound and the temperatures will be unbelievably low.

Whichever route you go, have a great time building it!

I've been down the big, loud, heavy case road before (in fact I'm sitting next to an Antec P182 right now); this time I'm going in the opposite direction.  Small, light, moderately quiet, and portable if needed (without a sherpa).
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: sheedoe on March 12, 2013, 02:31:10 AM
I would recommend a custom built PC. You can really pack some serious hardware for $3.5K. As a matter of fact, I just completed building my first custom PC a couple of weeks ago and loving it! My build is listed below. It came out to about $3.5K (not including monitors). I really shopped around for parts and it took me about 2 weeks to get all the parts I needed. For example, I bought the 3930K CPU for $450 (brand new) and the GPU for $520 (brand new) both from eBay.

 Thermaltake Chaser MK-1 Full Tower Case : $140
 Thermaltake Grand 850W Gold PSU: $150
 EVGA GTX Classified 680 4GB GPU: $520
 Asus P9X79 Pro Motherboard: $320
 Cooler Master 212 Evo CPU Cooler: $30
 2x Western Digital Black 4TB HDD: $600
 Samsung 256GB 840 Pro SSD (Main/OS): $240
 Samsung 512GB 840 Pro SSD (Scratch drive): 520
 G.Skill 64GB DDR3 1600MHz Memory: $320
 Intel i7 3930K 3.2 GHz Hexa Core CPU: $450
 LG 14X Blu-ray Writer: $55
 USB 3.0 5-in-1 Memory Card Reader: $30
Keyboard & Mouse: $80
Windows 8 Pro: $85
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: Hillsilly on March 12, 2013, 04:15:49 AM
...I haven't decided which direction I want to go on monitors yet, probably either a pair of Dell U2410 or U2412M monitors.  Those are about $400 and $300 each respectively. 

FWIW, I recently picked up a U2412M.  I'm impressed.   I know there are bigger, better and higher resolution monitors out there, but for $279, they are very good value.
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: Sith Zombie on March 12, 2013, 06:09:19 AM
Regardless of how you feel about Conan, and his hair, this video sums up many editors experiences with FCPX.

Conan O'Brien Editors: Apple Final Cut Pro X Is Easy To Use (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LxKYuF9pENQ#ws)

HAHAHA that's sooooo funny, thanks!
I'm still on an older version of final cut but I'v been wondering what the uproar about final cut pro x is about, and looking at some of the screen shots in that video, i can see why. It looks like freeking imovie, it's totally different!
For the OP: In your position, I would pick a beast PC, you'll save a lot of money and can upgrade the machine in time. Also, you have a lot more software options for the 3D side of things. For video, yes there's Avid but I used that for 2 years and hated it, very clunky, difficult to learn. They might have updated it by now but there's prob a ton of alternatives on PC.
I personally use Macs, I find the OS a lot easier to use. It thinks like I think, I felt like I was always fighting against Windows. I do a ton of photo editing and a bit of video and I think macs are great for that, but if your doing a ton of professional vid and 3d stuff then I say go PC. Not because you can't do it on a mac but because it's a heap more expensive if you want to and theres not as many software options.
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: lilmsmaggie on March 12, 2013, 01:39:19 PM
A few additional points.  Check out the Dell and ASUS IPS monitors.  They're both less than $400.  You're not restricted to a Full or Midtower chassis.   I was originally going to get the Silverstone Temjin TJ08-E but because I was planning on future expansion, I went with a midtower chassis. 

There are a couple of Youtube videos of a build using the Temjin TJ08-E: 

Photo Editing Workstation Build [March 2012] (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ewzF-EvIwmg#ws)

and here:

IvyBridge Build Intel i5 3570k ASUS Maximus V Gene Z77 Part 1 of 2 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u5u-f8WMYnw#ws)

Finally, the other advantage:  With a DIY build, you're not confined to a particular OS.  You can install Mac OS X, Linux, or Windows.  You could run both Mac OS X and Windows.  Whatever floats your boat.
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: Botts on March 12, 2013, 02:33:35 PM
Finally, the other advantage:  With a DIY build, you're not confined to a particular OS.  You can install Mac OS X, Linux, or Windows.  You could run both Mac OS X and Windows.  Whatever floats your boat.

As an individual who has gone down the hackintosh path before, if you want to run OS X on a custom built machine, you really want to build the machine for OS X.  Also, you'll have to be ok with not applying OS updates until they're tested by the hackintosh community and some other instabilities.

Next, you have to determine how valuable on site editing is for you.  I have had an iMac, and now run a 15" retina MBP.  The ability to have solid computing power while on site is invaluable.

Finally, the iMac and retina MacBook Pros have Thunderbolt and therefore the ability to add PCIe expansion cards.

All said, if you want to edit on the go, the retina MacBook Pro is the best option.  If raw processing power in the office is key, the DIY machine is going to be the cheapest, but the iMac, and OS X are sleek and operate day in, day out.  Bootcamp will run Windows flawlessly on any Mac too.
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: cayenne on March 12, 2013, 03:30:42 PM
Hi,
I am sort of a mediocre video maker. I write, shoot, and edit everything myself. This past year I have put more passion into film making. I have bought new equipment and been watching a lot of videos from professional film makers and their tutorials.

However, the one major problem I have right now is my computer. Right now for editing I use an old Lenovo PC which barely does the job. For one I work on an Adobe Platform. On my current PC I can't operate AE without having to render the entire project every 10 seconds so it doesn't lag. The same with Premiere. Although I upgraded my Video Card a couple years ago, I finally need to ditch this computer.

I've spoken with a couple of film maker friends and they each said something different, So I've come to a conclusion with three options. 1) I can get the new 27" iMac with custom hardware which comes to about $3,500 2) Get a MacBook Pro with the Retina Display with custom hardware which also is in the $3,500 range and 3) Build a custom PC with $3,500. Right now the MacPro is not considered as one of my options due to very high pricing with custom hardware.

Now, Although I work on an Adobe Platform, I would like to try Final Cut. But that is not really that important. Also, eventually I would like to start 3D modeling with 3Ds Max or similar, which I heard to be a PC software.

What I would like to know is what each of these 3 options are good for. I am really confused and I need to purchase something before the beginning of April. THANK YOU! :)

Also I Forgot to mention, right now I shoot with a Sony Nx5u and the Canon 5D Mark lll but eventually I will upgrade to something like either the BlackMagic or the RED. the computer would need to support these formats without lag and possibly support something like DaVinci Resolve for color correcting.

I shoot with a 5D3, I have a late 2011 Macbookpro, hooked to a Dell U2711 IPS monitor....it works pretty well. I do use FCPX and Davinci Resolve. I generally shut down either FCPX or Davinci, to save resources, and at times while both applications were in version upgrades out of sync, the roundtripping xml wasn't working properly, so had to do work arounds with that.

I maxed out my macbookpro from factory, except for the RAM which I installed 16GB myself.

It works pretty nicely. I may sell the Dell U2711....and get two of the Apple 27" monitors, they are the same exact IPS panel, but with the Apple ones, they are thunderbolt, and I can daisy chain them for dual monitor setup (I can't do that with Dell displayport setup).

That being said, I think in the near future for extra 'beef', I'm gonna spec out and build myself a Hackintosh.
There are a number of sites out there, but give this a read for a good start:

http://nofilmschool.com/build-a-hackintosh/ (http://nofilmschool.com/build-a-hackintosh/)

The new mac pros should be coming out soon, I think first of summer I'd heard?

I've not looked into it in depth yet, but I've heard the old, lowly mac mini is pretty powerful these days? It has quad core i7 cpu, up to 16GB (officially) RAM...but the graphics might be a little low?

I wonder if you could cluster a couple of those minis together? Hmm...might be a fun experiment, but I digress.
Anyway...give the link above a look.

HTH,

cayenne
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: cayenne on March 12, 2013, 03:33:00 PM
All about specs and familiarity. If you have been using PC, I recommend sticking with it, otherwise you may face a rather steep learning curve.  If you have the ability (or a friend with the ability) to build the PC from scratch, you can get a MONSTER PC that would cost twice as much in MAC. AND you're talking about adding another $1000 for Final Cut Pro.  Stick with the PC.  I've used both and it all boils down to personal preference.

Err....Final Cut Pro X is only $300

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/final-cut-pro/id424389933?mt=12 (https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/final-cut-pro/id424389933?mt=12)

cayenne
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: STEMI_RN on March 12, 2013, 03:47:58 PM
All about specs and familiarity. If you have been using PC, I recommend sticking with it, otherwise you may face a rather steep learning curve.  If you have the ability (or a friend with the ability) to build the PC from scratch, you can get a MONSTER PC that would cost twice as much in MAC. AND you're talking about adding another $1000 for Final Cut Pro.  Stick with the PC.  I've used both and it all boils down to personal preference.

Err....Final Cut Pro X is only $300

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/final-cut-pro/id424389933?mt=12 (https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/final-cut-pro/id424389933?mt=12)

cayenne

My mistake on the price. I was sticking to what I last paid for Final Cut Studio. (Or I should say, what my employer paid for it.)
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: Axilrod on March 12, 2013, 04:23:53 PM
Of course you can build a PC and get more bang for your buck, but if you have the money the new iMacs scream. 
Particularly the 3.4 i7 with Fusion drive and 2GB VRAM, benchmarks were similar to the Mac Pros from a couple years ago.  My mid-2011 iMac 3.1ghz i5/16GB RAM/500GB SSD scored around 9500 on Geekbench, the new one scored 14,300 (with only 8GB of RAM, might be a bit higher with 32GB)..  Retina MBP is around 12000, so it's quite a bit faster. 
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: dadohead on March 12, 2013, 04:25:49 PM
You're going to need something that supports CUDA. Premiere Pro and AE are both accelerated greatly by NVIDIA cards. Now, you can get a boost with AMD cards via OpenCL with Mac Mountain Lion if you know how to hack it, but CUDA's definitely the way to go.

If you ask some of the Adobe video people privately what kind of system you should get, they'll tell you unequivocally a PC, even though they frequently demo on a Mac. Apple has historically specced older parts in their systems, especially the video cards. Ask any Mac Pro user about their video cards and hear the teeth gnash. The current Mac Pro has a 5870 as the top-of-the-line card. That card is nearly 4 years old! More and more of the heavy lifting in video systems is being done by the GPU, and less and less by the processors. Having a box you can switch out the graphics cards on future-proofs your purchase. With any PP or AE installation, a buttload of RAM and a hot GPU will be your best friends. And that's even truer for Resolve. 

As to FCPX; yeah, they fixed some stuff, but there's still no audio mixer and it has the organizational ethos of iTunes, which is to say it has no organizational ethos. All I know is that Adobe has tremendous outreach to editing groups, they listen to users, they implement user's suggestions, and they're very invested in creating the best suite of tools for video professionals possible. Apple? Apple doesn't listen to anybody.

Premiere Pro is really nice and the integration with AE is spectacular. Stick with it.
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: wle on March 12, 2013, 04:59:37 PM
If still considering a laptop, recommend looking at Lenovo -

http://www.lenovo.com/products/us/laptop/ (http://www.lenovo.com/products/us/laptop/)

I took delivery on a W520 Thinkpad about a year ago and am very happy with it.

When matching specs with a Macbook Pro at the time, the W520 was substantially less expensive. The current model is W530. Pricing for a W530 configured similar to my last year's model comes to around $2,000 now. That includes mid model selection for i7, 8gig ram, and 180gig SSD. I started pricing with the W530 model that includes built-in x-rite monitor calibration.


Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: Halfrack on March 12, 2013, 05:00:26 PM
I think the OP needs to decide what their time is worth.  All 3.5 options (hackintosh is a half step on custom pc) will work fine, it's more of how you will use them.  Some of the Thunderbolt accessories are really nice and fast, but are currently limited to Apple built machines.  Taking this into the field or working only from your desk? 

Building a pc adds time and complexity, and you have more granular control over things - but this only does you any good if you have existing experience in building and troubleshooting.  Chances are you want to get back to the actual film projects, not trying to fix your computer.
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: cocopop05 on March 12, 2013, 05:05:52 PM
Back in the day, Mac were a much better platform than a Windows PC for any graphics arts applications such as Adobe.  Today however, it is the opposite.  Adobe's CS6 Mercury engine supports CUDA extensively and supports NVIDIA's Maximus solution.  Abode being OpenGL based means that you get much better performance and more extensive features using admittedly more expensive Quadro and Tesla cards than GeForce cards. 

A PC with a relatively cheap Quadro 600 should render a video in Premier Pro CS6 in around half the time of the current iMac.

Put in card a Quadro K5000 and a Tesla K20 in a PC (this is not cheap) and you will have performance that would require a fleets of Mac's.

Summing up, a single Windows PC configured with a Quadro and Tesla card will give performance a Mac user can only dream about. 
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: cayenne on March 12, 2013, 05:40:58 PM
If still considering a laptop, recommend looking at Lenovo -

http://www.lenovo.com/products/us/laptop/ (http://www.lenovo.com/products/us/laptop/)

I took delivery on a W520 Thinkpad about a year ago and am very happy with it.

When matching specs with a Macbook Pro at the time, the W520 was substantially less expensive. The current model is W530. Pricing for a W530 configured similar to my last year's model comes to around $2,000 now. That includes mid model selection for i7, 8gig ram, and 180gig SSD. I started pricing with the W530 model that includes built-in x-rite monitor calibration.
I bought and used a lenovo last year for a gig I was doing on contract. Lenovo is NOT the old IBM Thinkpad of yesteryear.

The old thinkpads were built like tanks..full metal, heavy duty, last forever.

I cannot say the same about the new lenovo. I'd have to look it up, but I got what I believe was the top of the line laptop, I think it was the thinkpad 520 (I can look if you need me to)....I was surprised to see the amount of plastic on the new ones. The thing had very 'shaky' USB slots in it...I was doing some work that required USB to serial communications, and the noise I got off this thing was not fun. I actually got better performance  doing the same thing on my macbookpro donig Win7 on VMWare connecting USB to serial, which should not be the case.

I also found the connections using the IBM dock with the laptop poor with regard to hooking to my Dell U2711...if you bumped the desk slightly, the connection with the docking station to the laptop was so frail, often the monitor would get noisy or lose connection all together, which would cause another PITA to get back online...and after sleeping, the IBM would not often correctly come back to the high resolution.

I was a fan of thinkpads in the past, but honestly, IMHO and last experience, it wasn't worth the money.

I know this is anecdotal, but that's my take on them these days.

My $0.02,

cayenne
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: mws on March 12, 2013, 06:28:23 PM
Even as a lifelong Mac user (Started with a Apple II) I would say go with a custom built PC. My next computer will be. You will get far more bang for your buck, and as of late Macs have been crap. OS 10.8.2 is the buggiest piece of crap and I wish I never installed it. I will miss the unix aspects of OS X though.
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: raph on March 12, 2013, 06:36:48 PM
Hi,
The answer is extremely simple : make a hackintosh and use FCPX.
go to http://www.tonymacx86.com (http://www.tonymacx86.com)
more specifically buy this http://www.tonymacx86.com/333-building-customac-buyer-s-guide-february-2013.html#custo_pro (http://www.tonymacx86.com/333-building-customac-buyer-s-guide-february-2013.html#custo_pro) and get two Dell 27 inch screens at 2560 x 1440.
This will certainly cost less than $3500
The only thing to be careful about is to get a graphics adapter with two DVI dual link connectors otherwise the screens won't show their full resolution.
If you decide you prefer Windows this same specification is just fine as well !
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: bseitz234 on March 12, 2013, 07:20:45 PM
Back in the day, Mac were a much better platform than a Windows PC for any graphics arts applications such as Adobe.  Today however, it is the opposite.  Adobe's CS6 Mercury engine supports CUDA extensively and supports NVIDIA's Maximus solution.  Abode being OpenGL based means that you get much better performance and more extensive features using admittedly more expensive Quadro and Tesla cards than GeForce cards. 

A PC with a relatively cheap Quadro 600 should render a video in Premier Pro CS6 in around half the time of the current iMac.

Put in card a Quadro K5000 and a Tesla K20 in a PC (this is not cheap) and you will have performance that would require a fleets of Mac's.

Summing up, a single Windows PC configured with a Quadro and Tesla card will give performance a Mac user can only dream about.

This is very interesting.... if true, I will be very interested to see what Apple includes for graphics with these new Mac Pros coming up....
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: cocopop05 on March 13, 2013, 08:27:16 AM
Back in the day, Mac were a much better platform than a Windows PC for any graphics arts applications such as Adobe.  Today however, it is the opposite.  Adobe's CS6 Mercury engine supports CUDA extensively and supports NVIDIA's Maximus solution.  Abode being OpenGL based means that you get much better performance and more extensive features using admittedly more expensive Quadro and Tesla cards than GeForce cards. 

A PC with a relatively cheap Quadro 600 should render a video in Premier Pro CS6 in around half the time of the current iMac.

Put in card a Quadro K5000 and a Tesla K20 in a PC (this is not cheap) and you will have performance that would require a fleets of Mac's.

Summing up, a single Windows PC configured with a Quadro and Tesla card will give performance a Mac user can only dream about.

This is very interesting.... if true, I will be very interested to see what Apple includes for graphics with these new Mac Pros coming up....

Absolutely.  Currently Mac support the K5000 which gives superb performance at 1080p video or lower, but unless Mac support Tesla, they will always lag behind.

These solutions I have mentioned are aimed at Mac Pro only, for people who like the all-in-one form factor such as the very beautiful iMac, these solutions do not apply.   However one interesting solution is the HP Z1 which can be configured with a Quadro 4000 and has a 30-bit display, again offering video production performance way ahead of the current iMac.   

Just to address those who may label me as anti-Apple, I have been using Apple Mac's for over 20 years and dearly love their products, but the reality is that the landscape has changed and for video production in particular, Windows platforms are now way ahead.
Title: Re: IMac vs MacBook Pro vs Custom PC for editing?
Post by: cayenne on March 13, 2013, 03:48:35 PM
Hi,
The answer is extremely simple : make a hackintosh and use FCPX.
go to http://www.tonymacx86.com (http://www.tonymacx86.com)
more specifically buy this http://www.tonymacx86.com/333-building-customac-buyer-s-guide-february-2013.html#custo_pro (http://www.tonymacx86.com/333-building-customac-buyer-s-guide-february-2013.html#custo_pro) and get two Dell 27 inch screens at 2560 x 1440.
This will certainly cost less than $3500
The only thing to be careful about is to get a graphics adapter with two DVI dual link connectors otherwise the screens won't show their full resolution.
If you decide you prefer Windows this same specification is just fine as well !

Well, one nice thing about today...is Virtual Machines (VMs).

My recommendation, is to get the fastest machine you can get or put together, and optimally, make it with specs that the Hackintosh crowd can work with, and that way, just install VMWare or VirtualBox, and then run whatever version of windows, OSX or Linux you want to run, and have the best of all worlds.

VMWare is getting pretty good of late, and will support just about any setup you wish....so, wny not have audio tools like Rosegarden http://www.rosegardenmusic.com/ (http://www.rosegardenmusic.com/), or Ardour http://ardour.org/ (http://ardour.org/) running on Linux for sound, FCPX on OSX, and Adobe on Win7 if you prefer (or Win8....*shudder*).

Don't forget things like :

Blender http://www.blender.org/ (http://www.blender.org/)
Cinellera http://heroinewarrior.com/cinelerra.php (http://heroinewarrior.com/cinelerra.php)

The nice thing about today is, you aren't stuck on one platform if you don't want to be, the operating system is quickly becoming a commodity.

I prefer the Unix/Linux based ones, but hey, every job has the proper tool for it...

cayenne