Jump to content


Photo

New computer for editing


  • Please log in to reply
37 replies to this topic

#1 Justin Oakley

Justin Oakley
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 54 posts
  • Other
  • North Carolina

Posted 07 June 2018 - 02:18 PM

Hello again.

I need two things:
- a better camera (previously discussed)
- a newer/better computer for editing

I figured I could get by with the camera I have for now. Even though it sucks. So Im looking into editing stuff.

I guess Im just wondering which laptop I could use (preferably a Mac) that is affordable, and powerful enough to cover me. And by affordable I mean around 1500...maybe not a brand new 2018 model, a refurb maybe?

This is what I currently have going on.

13 MacBook Pro
2.5GHz Intel Core i5

memory: 4GB 1600 MHz

graphics: Intel HD graphics 4000 1536MB

Ive done ok on it with the footage and software Ive been working with. But from what I understand its a pretty basic deal. Not sure how it would fare with raw footage or 4K or whatever. Also, this is the laptop I do other stuff on...manage money, internet, some stuff for work, etc. It would be nice to have a dedicated machine that I can install various tools and editing software onto without bogging it down.

I just want a smooth, fast (at least not ridiculously slow) workflow. And not have to worry about crashing and stuff.

Any recommendations, particular specs I should look for, and/or resources for affordable laptops would be greatly appreciated.

By the way, Im a complete moron when it comes to computers. Not gonna lie to you.
  • 0

#2 Tyler Purcell

Tyler Purcell
  • Sustaining Members
  • 4166 posts
  • Other
  • Los Angeles

Posted 07 June 2018 - 02:40 PM

Well... I mean you aren't gonna get a laptop that will work with 4k raw media very well, thats not gonna happen. Yes, there are some very nifty PC laptops with super fast GPU's and lots of memory, but they're basically desktops made portable, so they're huge. In the apple world, if you have a camera that shoots with consumer codec's like .h264/.h265, avc, etc... then any i7 laptop with decent amount of speed and memory will chug through low bit rate (100-200mbps) UHD (3840x2160) footage no problem. Once you get up 400Mbps or greater, then laptops start to struggle. So this means your camera options become more limited to the lower end one's, which I guess is ok.

 

The current generation Macbook Pro's are pretty damn quick. This is what I would get, assuming you need a laptop: https://www.apple.co...-display-Silver

 

I personally don't like laptops for editing, mainly because the screen real estate is so limited, it's almost a joke in some ways. However, this laptop is one of the first that has just enough power to deal with most challenges. Apple will be doing a major laptop revamp very soon, so these laptops should drop in price considerably in the next few months. Everyone bitched to apple about the loss of the mag safe power system AND the lack of super fast graphics, so they are working on both issues. 

 

So read that link, look at the specs, that's pretty much what you're after, especially when it comes to the GPU (graphics processing unit) and the memory. Sadly the big thing that holds me back from buying one is the lack of memory. 16gb is just not enough and it's also not upgradable, so it's a HUGE hinderance on anyone trying to do professional work with one. So I sit here on a nearly 10 year old laptop still because if I'm gonna buy a fancy new laptop, it better have 32gb of memory. 


  • 0

#3 Justin Oakley

Justin Oakley
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 54 posts
  • Other
  • North Carolina

Posted 07 June 2018 - 03:04 PM

Thanks. That was quick!
I will certainly check out the link you provided.

When you say lower end cameras, what is your definition of lower end? Because Im pretty sure Im in the lower end category. I dont do this professionally. And Ann expensive camera for me is like 3 grand...and thats pushing it.

Are cameras like the canon cs, Black Magic URSA mini, or pocket cinema cameras considered lower end? I sure hope so, because those are the guys Ive been looking into.
  • 0

#4 Justin Oakley

Justin Oakley
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 54 posts
  • Other
  • North Carolina

Posted 07 June 2018 - 03:12 PM

Actually, looking into the C100 was one of the things that made me consider a new laptop. I guess it records AVCHD and I wasnt sure if that would raise any issues.

For now I pretty much transcode my DSLR footage in resolve to ProRes and then take THOSE clips into the editing software I use.

No real hang ups so far. Just dont want to get a nice camera (low end to most people here) and find myself trapped because my computer cant handle it.
  • 0

#5 Samuel Berger

Samuel Berger
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1179 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Seattle

Posted 07 June 2018 - 04:45 PM

Actually, looking into the C100 was one of the things that made me consider a new laptop. I guess it records AVCHD and I wasnt sure if that would raise any issues.

For now I pretty much transcode my DSLR footage in resolve to ProRes and then take THOSE clips into the editing software I use.

No real hang ups so far. Just dont want to get a nice camera (low end to most people here) and find myself trapped because my computer cant handle it.


Are you willing to wait until September?
https://www.bhphotov..._camera_4k.html
  • 0

#6 Phil Rhodes

Phil Rhodes
  • Sustaining Members
  • 12239 posts
  • Other

Posted 07 June 2018 - 05:45 PM

I'll say what I've said before.

 

Laptops are an extremely expensive way to buy computing power, and Macs are also an extremely expensive way to buy computing power. If you desperately want both then you will be paying a huge price premium (many times) over the cost of a Windows desktop.

 

Still, if you really must have a laptop, I recommend you look at the Dell XPS range, which are built to compete with Macs but are significantly better value. The Dell XPS 15 9560 compares to the less-expensive 15" Macbook since both have the same CPU and RAM. However, the Dell has a higher resolution display, twice the storage, a significantly more powerful GPU and almost twice the battery power. It is almost exactly the same size and about seven ounces heavier. If you pick one that has about the same battery power as the mac, the Dell is actually lighter, and it is a third cheaper. These are really difficult numbers to ignore: the Dell is significantly more powerful than the Mac in ways that will be noticeable to the user, is of comparable build quality, is very much cheaper.

 

If you want even more power you can look at Alienware or something like the Asus GL502. They're not built like Macs, they are more portable machines than true laptops and their unsupported battery life is nowhere near the Dell or Apple product. That means, though, that they are very powerful, on a par with some desktop workstations. Common GL502 configurations have 24GB of RAM over the Mac's 16, a one-terabyte spinning disk useful for media storage, and a very capable GTX 1060 GPU. The GL502 is hugely more powerful than the Mac, and again about 65% the price. They're not as well-built as a Mac - if you want that, get the Dell - but the performance comparison is difficult to overlook.

 

I don't really mean to bash Apple, they make nice enough gear, but it's becoming very difficult to ignore the fact that they are very, very, very expensive. With most people using the same software on either platform (Resolve, Adobe suite, etc) it isn't really very clear why Apple is worthwhile.

 

P


  • 1

#7 Justin Oakley

Justin Oakley
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 54 posts
  • Other
  • North Carolina

Posted 07 June 2018 - 06:08 PM

Are you willing to wait until September?
https://www.bhphotov..._camera_4k.html


I sure am.

Ive just been exploring other cameras...because September is quite far away haha
  • 0

#8 Justin Oakley

Justin Oakley
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 54 posts
  • Other
  • North Carolina

Posted 07 June 2018 - 06:24 PM

I'll say what I've said before.
 
Laptops are an extremely expensive way to buy computing power, and Macs are also an extremely expensive way to buy computing power. If you desperately want both then you will be paying a huge price premium (many times) over the cost of a Windows desktop.
 
Still, if you really must have a laptop, I recommend you look at the Dell XPS range, which are built to compete with Macs but are significantly better value. The Dell XPS 15 9560 compares to the less-expensive 15" Macbook since both have the same CPU and RAM. However, the Dell has a higher resolution display, twice the storage, a significantly more powerful GPU and almost twice the battery power. It is almost exactly the same size and about seven ounces heavier. If you pick one that has about the same battery power as the mac, the Dell is actually lighter, and it is a third cheaper. These are really difficult numbers to ignore: the Dell is significantly more powerful than the Mac in ways that will be noticeable to the user, is of comparable build quality, is very much cheaper.
 
If you want even more power you can look at Alienware or something like the Asus GL502. They're not built like Macs, they are more portable machines than true laptops and their unsupported battery life is nowhere near the Dell or Apple product. That means, though, that they are very powerful, on a par with some desktop workstations. Common GL502 configurations have 24GB of RAM over the Mac's 16, a one-terabyte spinning disk useful for media storage, and a very capable GTX 1060 GPU. The GL502 is hugely more powerful than the Mac, and again about 65% the price. They're not as well-built as a Mac - if you want that, get the Dell - but the performance comparison is difficult to overlook.
 
I don't really mean to bash Apple, they make nice enough gear, but it's becoming very difficult to ignore the fact that they are very, very, very expensive. With most people using the same software on either platform (Resolve, Adobe suite, etc) it isn't really very clear why Apple is worthwhile.
 
P


I think Im picking up what youre putting down.

I am not somebody with access to a ton of money. I dont have disposable income. And Im not a brand snob by any means.

The reason for the laptop is
1) as stated earlier, I am a complete moron when it comes to computers. So building some huge editing computer isnt really an option for me
2) I need something that I can take with me to work. Work is where I do all of my editing. Its where I geek out on the internet and learn and experiment/test footage I get. I work 48 hour shifts so when Im home I try to maximize my time with the lady. I cant be hunched over a computer for hours on end when were both home.

And I think I was more focused on Macs because, well thats pretty much all Ive known for the past 5 years or so. I kind of forgot what its like to own a PC. All the updates and protection software and all that. My lack of computer knowledge played a huge factor in the purchase of my Mac.

I will say that I am not above buying something like the Dell you mentioned. Again, I would like to just have a dedicated machine exclusively used for video...and maybe music. So if it does the same, or better, hell yeah Id look into one! Yes, Apple products are ridiculously priced. But I havent spent a dime on my Mac since I took it out of the box however many years ago. Pretty sure it was a refurb too.
  • 0

#9 Adrian Sierkowski

Adrian Sierkowski
  • Sustaining Members
  • 7409 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles, Ca

Posted 07 June 2018 - 06:39 PM

I quite like my Razr Laptop; which is basically a mac, with windows and a 4K touchscreen as well as a graphics card. Windows 10 isn't that bad, but did take some getting used to. I rather like it and thus far after maybe 3 yrs on this machine, no windows problems (though the battery on this could do with a replacement, I did use it heavily, though).


  • 0

#10 Justin Oakley

Justin Oakley
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 54 posts
  • Other
  • North Carolina

Posted 07 June 2018 - 06:56 PM

I quite like my Razr Laptop; which is basically a mac, with windows and a 4K touchscreen as well as a graphics card. Windows 10 isn't that bad, but did take some getting used to. I rather like it and thus far after maybe 3 yrs on this machine, no windows problems (though the battery on this could do with a replacement, I did use it heavily, though).


How much, all-in?
It has decent processing speed and handles large amounts of data, I assume?

Im not hell bent on Mac. I would definitely love to know more about the alternative options. Again, this would be pretty much used exclusively for video editing and music.

Im diving in completely in the blind here. This trusty MacBook is all Ive known.
  • 0

#11 Tyler Purcell

Tyler Purcell
  • Sustaining Members
  • 4166 posts
  • Other
  • Los Angeles

Posted 07 June 2018 - 07:47 PM

Are cameras like the canon cs, Black Magic URSA mini, or pocket cinema cameras considered lower end? I sure hope so, because those are the guys Ive been looking into.

 

Umm like A7S, GH5, Blackmagic Pocket, DSLR's, stuff like that. 

 

URSA Mini Pro is "mid" end. You wouldn't have a problem working with Pro Res on the laptop I selected. 


  • 0

#12 Adrian Sierkowski

Adrian Sierkowski
  • Sustaining Members
  • 7409 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles, Ca

Posted 07 June 2018 - 07:59 PM

How much, all-in?
It has decent processing speed and handles large amounts of data, I assume?

Im not hell bent on Mac. I would definitely love to know more about the alternative options. Again, this would be pretty much used exclusively for video editing and music.

Im diving in completely in the blind here. This trusty MacBook is all Ive known.

Well  it's a gamaing rig; so yeah handles most things pretty well and mines an older model. the newew ones are even better, i'm told; but I've little reason to upgrade yet. I think it was around 2000 or so but it's been awhile.


  • 0

#13 Tyler Purcell

Tyler Purcell
  • Sustaining Members
  • 4166 posts
  • Other
  • Los Angeles

Posted 07 June 2018 - 08:12 PM

I quite like my Razr Laptop; which is basically a mac, with windows and a 4K touchscreen as well as a graphics card. Windows 10 isn't that bad, but did take some getting used to. I rather like it and thus far after maybe 3 yrs on this machine, no windows problems (though the battery on this could do with a replacement, I did use it heavily, though).

 

Funny enough, the Razer's are the most recent intel chip set, but they are actually pretty much the same amount of money as the Macbook pro's when you configure them. Yes, the Razer is a newer chipset, but Apple will have that chipset soon, it's been rumored for months now and sure it will come with a Radeon graphics, but they do work fine. If you aren't gaming full time, the radeon Open GL and Open CL support is actually faster then nVidia's support sadly. 

 

The sad part is, you're stuck with windows, where the Macbook Pro can run Mac OS, Windows and Linux all at the same time. Mac OS unlocks the power of real-time integrated 64bit Pro Res, DNX and Cinema DNG support, formats which are not OS native with Windows at all. Plus with the free codec packs from Sony, Red and Avid, you can literally get every codec to be native in the Mac OS, no other playback software necessary. This allows for very quick (hit spacebar) preview of files with audio, which means digging through your media to find things is WAY easier, no need for 3rd party software. 

 

Plus if you have any other Apple devices like an iPhone, iPad or even Apple TV, the iCloud integration is 2nd to none. Your entire life is stored on the cloud if you want, which means even the littlest of actions you perform on your laptop, show up on your other devices as well. This pretty much ends the need for storage on your devices, but it's free and it's integrated into the OS, rather than 3rd party like Google or Microsoft's system. 

 

Over-all, nothing really beats the Mac OS for serious working. I'm not a gamer and I don't wanna futz with my hardware. I wanna buy a computer, bring it home and not do anything to it, but be able to do my work right away. No virus protection, no malware, no ransomwear protection either, ya just open it up and get to work, that's the power of the Mac OS.    


  • 0

#14 Justin Oakley

Justin Oakley
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 54 posts
  • Other
  • North Carolina

Posted 07 June 2018 - 08:21 PM

 
Umm like A7S, GH5, Blackmagic Pocket, DSLR's, stuff like that. 
 
URSA Mini Pro is "mid" end. You wouldn't have a problem working with Pro Res on the laptop I selected. 


I read through some reviews for the Dell XPS. Quite a few negative reviews. Enough to raise eyebrows.

- bad drivers (whatever that means)
- buggy or bug issues
- complete failure a couple months after warranty

I really wish I were a computer guy. But Im not. This is quite intimidating.

Im not a gamer or anything. So I would like to think I could have a relatively easy and smooth experience. But reviews like this make me worry.
  • 0

#15 Justin Oakley

Justin Oakley
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 54 posts
  • Other
  • North Carolina

Posted 07 June 2018 - 08:30 PM

 
Funny enough, the Razer's are the most recent intel chip set, but they are actually pretty much the same amount of money as the Macbook pro's when you configure them. Yes, the Razer is a newer chipset, but Apple will have that chipset soon, it's been rumored for months now and sure it will come with a Radeon graphics, but they do work fine. If you aren't gaming full time, the radeon Open GL and Open CL support is actually faster then nVidia's support sadly. 
 
The sad part is, you're stuck with windows, where the Macbook Pro can run Mac OS, Windows and Linux all at the same time. Mac OS unlocks the power of real-time integrated 64bit Pro Res, DNX and Cinema DNG support, formats which are not OS native with Windows at all. Plus with the free codec packs from Sony, Red and Avid, you can literally get every codec to be native in the Mac OS, no other playback software necessary. This allows for very quick (hit spacebar) preview of files with audio, which means digging through your media to find things is WAY easier, no need for 3rd party software. 
 
Plus if you have any other Apple devices like an iPhone, iPad or even Apple TV, the iCloud integration is 2nd to none. Your entire life is stored on the cloud if you want, which means even the littlest of actions you perform on your laptop, show up on your other devices as well. This pretty much ends the need for storage on your devices, but it's free and it's integrated into the OS, rather than 3rd party like Google or Microsoft's system. 
 
Over-all, nothing really beats the Mac OS for serious working. I'm not a gamer and I don't wanna futz with my hardware. I wanna buy a computer, bring it home and not do anything to it, but be able to do my work right away. No virus protection, no malware, no ransomwear protection either, ya just open it up and get to work, that's the power of the Mac OS.    


See??!

Everything about this is why Im really kind of stuck on Mac.

I dont do any gaming. Im too thick to troubleshoot problems with drivers or software. Customer support for Mac is just top notch. And I havent spent one red cent on maintenance or any other issues with my measly 13 MacBook.

For somebody like me, the price is outrageous at first, but well worth the convenience in the end.

And Im not even a Mac fanboy or anything.

Man nothing about this is easy for me.
  • 0

#16 Adrian Sierkowski

Adrian Sierkowski
  • Sustaining Members
  • 7409 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles, Ca

Posted 07 June 2018 - 08:32 PM

I've never had an issue on the razr which wasn't taken care of. Yes it's pricier than most other PCs, but it's been damned reliable, and the one issue I did have (a screen one) was replaced for free even out of warrentee.

I haven't had to do any driver/hardware things, at all. The only issue I had in the least was in upgrading from Windows 8 to 10 when it came out; and only with uninstalling 1 program.


  • 0

#17 Phil Rhodes

Phil Rhodes
  • Sustaining Members
  • 12239 posts
  • Other

Posted 08 June 2018 - 04:22 AM

I'm not particularly here to defend Dell, but you should probably be a bit careful about reading too much into online reviews. In my experience people only tend to take the time to write about their purchases when they're cheesed off about something. By comparison, there's actually a class-action happening against Apple (third in a month, according to techspot.com), this time about Macbook keyboards. This happens partly because there may genuinely be a problem, but I suspect largely because Apple is a large, very wealthy organisation that's rewarding to sue.

 

In short, don't take griping on review sites too seriously. Everything has a failure rate and that failure rate tends to get talked-up by frustrated people.

 

The layout of Windows is not as nice as OSX, but not to a degree that should particularly worry anyone. It amazes me that Microsoft has continued to exhibit so little taste in user interface design decade after decade, but there's no longer anything terribly wrong with the underlying OS. There certainly was, back in the days of Windows 98, but that's very much a past-tense issue. It's just taken this long (twenty years!) to begin to shift that impression. Operating systems that run on arbitrary hardware (anything other than OSX) can probably never quite match the level of reliability of something that only runs on machines supplied by the people who wrote the OS, but it's not a disaster.

 

You don't have to build a desktop machine if you did happen to want one. Look into the workstations offered by people like Lenovo. It will at least make the price comparison with a laptop fairly clear.

 

P


  • 0

#18 Brian Drysdale

Brian Drysdale
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 5220 posts
  • Cinematographer

Posted 08 June 2018 - 06:55 AM

II suspect that Apple products are as liable to virus attack etc as other computer systems, so should have protection. Even Apple says: "no system can be 100 per cent immune from every threat"


  • 0

#19 Phil Rhodes

Phil Rhodes
  • Sustaining Members
  • 12239 posts
  • Other

Posted 08 June 2018 - 09:33 AM

II suspect that Apple products are as liable to virus attack etc as other computer systems, so should have protection. Even Apple says: "no system can be 100 per cent immune from every threat"

If we start seeing desktop Linux distros like Ubuntu used as widely as Windows is used, in the same way that Windows is used, I suspect we'll start seeing the problems with that sort of thing as well.

 

P


  • 0

#20 Adrian Sierkowski

Adrian Sierkowski
  • Sustaining Members
  • 7409 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles, Ca

Posted 08 June 2018 - 10:14 AM

There are a few malwares written for mac out there; not too many, but a few.


  • 0


Metropolis Post

Wooden Camera

Paralinx LLC

New Pro Video - New and Used Equipment

Rig Wheels Passport

Ritter Battery

CineTape

Abel Cine

Aerial Filmworks

The Slider

Technodolly

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Tai Audio

CineLab

Visual Products

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Willys Widgets

rebotnix Technologies

FJS International, LLC

Glidecam

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

CineLab

CineTape

FJS International, LLC

Ritter Battery

Willys Widgets

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Tai Audio

New Pro Video - New and Used Equipment

Technodolly

Aerial Filmworks

Broadcast Solutions Inc

rebotnix Technologies

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Rig Wheels Passport

Wooden Camera

Abel Cine

Metropolis Post

The Slider

Paralinx LLC

Visual Products

Glidecam