best computer for editing hd video?

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    • #47117

      this question is for anyone already editing hd video..i am about to enter this realm and i was just wondering what kind of cpu and ram you are working with..i know im gonna need a new computer because what i have now is not fast enough to playback the video..any suggestions would be greatly appreciated..thanks

    • #193949


      This is a question that gets asked quite often here. Long story short, you’ll have to decide what Non-linear editing software you plan on using whether PC or Mac, research the requirements needed for said computer or laptop to fully function with that software and either buy a ready-made or build that computer according to the recommended specs. I’m not going into any debate about which OS platform is better or get into any kind of fanboy arguments. Also, you have to take into account what recording format you’re going to use (i.e. tape-based or flash media) as there are issues with both types of media that will influence the amount of power/efficiency your system will need.

      Mac’s, PC’s and Linux based systems all use the same parts now except for Mac’s not being compatible with AMD CPU’s. Stability issues are similar between Mac’s and PC’s because either one will crash when you least need it to (like in the middle of an important edit) for various reasons. All three OS’s have their strengths and weaknesses and you’ll have to decide which one’s you can live and work with under the budget you’ve set for yourself.

      Other members may be willing to hash out the specific points about what brand will best suit your intentions. For a detailed description on the PC side, check out the post ‘To Build or Not to Build’.

    • #193950

      Read the forums and look around. There’s all kinds of opinions on this. I second Composite1’s take: read that article. I personally build my own and can’t see myself ever buying anything off the shelf again. But that’s me.

    • #193951

      I can only tell you what I use. The videos I shoot are of
      local activities such as festivals, parades etc., whatever I see that looks
      interesting. I don’t do fancy editing, mostly cut and paste stuff with a few
      titles, transitions, sometimes a P-i-P. Here is my setup.

      Camera: I use a Canon
      Vixia HF11. It records in AVCHD. I always use the MXP highest quality setting.
      I record to the built-in 32Gb memory then transfer the clips to the removable
      16Gb card in the camcorder. I then remove this card and read it into my laptop
      with a card reader. This way I don’t have to connect the camcorder to the
      computer nor to ac power.

      Computer: I use a Lenovo Thinkpad T400 with the T9600 2.8GHz
      processor, discrete graphics, 7000 RPM 160Gb hard drive and 4Gb memory. This
      got a high recommendation by PC Magazine for performance. I see it as a
      compromise between, performance, price and portability. I only use this
      computer for current project videos and transfer finished projects to an external
      drive for storage.

      Editor: I use Cyberlink PowerDirector 8 Ultra. It works directly with the AVCHD files. It has been stable
      and fast. The user guide is well written. So far everything works like they say
      it should. It got the top rating in toptenreviews. I started with Adobe Premier
      Elements, but quit because it kept shutting down. This problem has also been
      noted elsewhere in these forums for the Pro version. Also Adobe has to first
      render everything so it is much slower.

      I am very satisfied with this package for what I do.

      I hope this helps.

    • #193952

      I used to edit MTS (AVCHD) files native in Sony Vegas Pro on a Core 2 Duo laptop (2.0gGHz) with 2GB RAM without problems (a little stutter on editing but nothing major).

      As a rule, the more powerful the processor the better – Same for more RAM – Other beneficial things like fast hard drive and faster front-side bus access will also help.

      I am hoping my next editing machine will be a Core i7 920 with 8GB RAM & Win7 Ultimate 64bit. Just have to finish saving up…

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