FACTS on editing AVCHD?

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    • #44141

      OK all – I’m trying to get some solid information from someone(s) who has first-hand experience editing AVCHD.

      I have my first client who is asking for HD, so I need to buy a camera and dive in.

      I’ll be purchasing a Canon VIXIA model – already settled on that.

      I’ve ready every thread here and elsewhere that I can find on the topic.

      First off, let me say that for the past 5 years I have always gotten by with the least possible when it comes to hardware. When most “professionals” say it can’t be done with such and such, most of the time I laugh because I’m doing exactly what they say can’t be done. Would I like to have the latest and greatest hardware? Sure, who would’nt – but most often the pocketbook says “no!” I made a heck of a lot of money editing video on a 900MHZ Celeron laptop with 256MB RAM, running Premiere Pro 1.5 – this is when most people seemed to say you “had to have” at least a 2.0 GHZ Pentium 4 and 1GB of RAM.

      Anyway – having said that, is it possible for me to edit AVCHD on my Athlon X2 Dual-Core 2.6Ghz with 2GB of RAM, nVidia GeForce 8500 512MB? Will this system edit AVCHD? I know it’s not the perfect system, but could I pull it off a few projects?

      I’ll be editing in Premiere Pro CS3, most likely using the Cineform plugin for AVCHD support.

      Any input and thoughtsappreciated – thanks!

    • #185002

      Maybe but rendering and export times could cost you more money in the long run.

    • #185003

      I cannot speak to your machine however, I used to edit (using Sony Vegas Pro 8) native MTS files on a 2Ghz Core 2 Duo laptop w/2GB RAM with a small amount of lag, Had it been faster (say around 2.6GHz) I think I would have been ok.

      You could always use convrters like AVCHD Upshift from VASST/New Blue FX to convert from MTS to lightly compressed M2T first (what I do now).

    • #185004

      Yes you can when you use Sony Vegas anyways from what I know of. I use Sony Vegas 9 and it works just fine with Canon Vixias mts file format. I shoot with a Canon Vixia HF 200 which is similar to the HF20 the only difference between the two is one has more internal memory than the other. The camera is awesome shooting at 24, 30, or 60 frames per second your choice. It does have its draw backs though such as being a hand held you do not have the stability you really need when walking so a steadicam like the merlin works great. I actually found one through ebay from a guy who sells a similar product through indiehardware.com for $100 bucks and works great to keep it steady. I also purchased the Rode Mic to hook up to the Canon but to tell you the truth the built in mic on the Canon Vixia is wonderful. The external mic makes it that much better for farther away subjects. Sony Vegas does lag in the preview screen but you can correct it by highlighting your frames and hitting the shift and b keys on your keyboard to see it in real time. It has worked great for me but I am now in the market for a Mac as rendering and real time preview and just simply editing is much much better than a PC will ever be for videos. Nonetheless it will work for you though.

    • #185005

      There is virtually no lag editing MPEG-2 content (with preview quality set to Auto) in Sony Vegas Pro 9 editing with my 1.66 GHzCore Duoprocessor. From my own knowledge base, and from other things thatI’ve read, editing AVCHD tends to give off more lag than does MPEG-2. Hardrive RPM, programs installed, and programs currently running will also be factors that will affect the ease of editing.

      Converting to DV-AVI, orsome other”more editable” format before editing will compromise between to compression formats. This may, however, be the best route to go for your situation.


    • #185006


      Do you see any loss in quality using AVCHD Upshift? Thanks!

    • #185007

      futball8 –

      UpShift has various quality settings – I always choose the highest quality so I don’t have this issue – For that setting I see no degradation.

    • #185008

      futball8 –

      I’m not sure anyone answered your original question. I use a Sony SR-11 with AVCHD, Premiere Elements (which is arguably more forgiving in terms of computing requirements) and a computer with a similar memory configuration as yours. When I record in the highest HD setting, the computer is simply not able to handle it. The playback can’t keep up with the clips, Premiere frequently crashes, and prior to rendering I have to do a restart, or it will freeze partway through. To edit HD, I use my daughter’s VAIO which has 4 GB of memory, with none of these problems. I think you should look at doubling your memory if possible, because the combination of AVCHD+Premiere=memory hog.

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