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CPU for a video editing machine

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October 28, 2009 1:11:49 AM

Hi,

I'm looking to build a machine that will serve mainly for working with video (using Pinnacle Studio 10). Now please correct me if I'm wrong, but the processing when editing videos is done by the processor and not by the graphics card. I'm basing this whole thread on this notion, so if I'm mistaken please let me know :) 

So the main Issue is the Processor of course. I've been out of the game for a few years now, I have no idea whether I should go for an AMD or Intel processor. And it's not just that, the are so many CPUs out there with different clocks speeds, different memory size, number of cores etc.. I really don't know where to begin. What more important for video editing? Higher clock speed, bigger cache memory on the CPU? I'd really appreciate some words of advice here as I'm totally lost here...

Thanks!
October 28, 2009 3:09:58 AM

You are right, the editing is done by the proccesor, but you have to check the new thing of nvidia called Nvidia CUDA, as far as I know it improves the use of the video card in some process that was done by the proccesor, but would be better done by the video card, I dont know much abbout that, but try to investigate abbout

The proccesor, AMD is the best for gaming, never heard of people using AMD for editing, so use Intel, I would recomend an i7, but all depends on how much are you going to spend.
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October 28, 2009 10:37:40 AM

Well, for a video editing rig, which I believe you maybe using for commercial wedding and occasions videos. The Pinnacle studio is for graphical editing , effects and compilation of the sequence in the movies you are going to shoot and make.
Adding a Cuda card is going to help a lot and if all this is based on the Multi Threading capacity of a good processor it would work out to save you a lot of time.
An AMD Quad core will function beautifully well in this sort of environment.
Check out the cinebench report for both the i7 and the Amd's. That'll help you decide, yup, budget is a big factor plus the availability of parts where you stay.
India is still far away from the i7. Atleast for usage in home computing.
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October 28, 2009 11:27:20 AM

i7 (1366) - the best you could buy, though it costs quite a bit.
i7(1156) / i5 (1156) - if you can't afford the 1366 version of the i7, though in some parts of the world the socket 1156 and 1366 are near in price.

AMD Phenom II - a cheaper alternative to an i5 and only a bit slower, and is slower than any i7. There are a lot of cheap AM2+ motherboards that support PII, so your choices are wide, (AM2+ mobo + DDR2) or (AM3 mobo + DDR3). With an AM2+ mobo, you may end up being a bit slower than an i5, but a whole lot cheaper.

AMD Athlon II x4 - an even cheaper alternative even to the Phenom II.

Core 2 Quad(775) - you should only really consider this if Phenom II or Athlon II x4 isn't available in your area, and an i5 might be too expensive.
October 29, 2009 12:01:05 AM

Thanks for replying guys,

some guy on another forum suggested that what I'm doing is just graphical editing and not really Video editing and that i could do with a cheaper AMD processor.

What i do is get the movies from the DVcam to the PC, then chop them up, sequence them, add sound etc and compile the whole thing...

I can afford the ‏Core i7 920, s1366, 8MB or ‏Core i7 860, s1156, 8MB, with a good motherboard and 4GB of RAM. The question is, will those expensive processors give me significant improvement over the cheaper AMD versions for the kind of work I'm doing..?

What do you guys think?
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October 29, 2009 3:40:39 AM

Yes The i7 920 will give you not only significant but an extremely drastic time change. If it takes the earlier processors 4 hours to compile a clip the new i7 is going to take you around 40 minutes to an hour. Especially when it comes to rendering time.
My PIII Tulatin 899MHz OCed to 1.1 GHz used to take me 14 hrs to convert a 3hr movie to any give format ( Quicktime not inclusive)
My AMD Athlon 64 Used to take 10 hrs for the same
My AMD Athlon X2 4400+ took 3hrs
And I bet my new X4 620 is going to take even less time.
So yes, the i7 is worth the price if you're going to be using it for your kind of editing 14 hrs a day.
It'll give you like 400HP of work something like you what you may be used to doing in a months time within the week will be finished.And I forgot to say, another 2 GB of ram would be a good idea, if more better.
4GB is what we're using for , you can say normal functioning with vista and a few programs on, video editing even 15 seconds is memory and processor intensive
An SSD HDD and 4 more gigs of RAM will make your system a worthwhile i7 editing rocket.....
If you can afford it.... go for it.... and add the CUDA cards that'll allow you to work on the machine even while the system is still compiling the video 100% resources will not be used and the machine will not slow down drastically leaving enough realtime for you to edit and compile another video while one gets finalized.
October 29, 2009 5:21:50 AM

Yes, generally the speed of your processor will have the biggest influence on performance for your stated task (video encoding). However, the potential speed of your processor is bound by your motherboard, RAM, and cooling. With a little tweaking, you can make a $300 i7 920 run faster than a $1,000 stock i7 975 (although, you can tweak the 975 even farther).

I think this would be a great build for $2,000:
http://secure.newegg.com/WishList/PublicWishDetail.aspx?WishListNumber=16408927

Quote:
Note for this wish list(Edit)
This mobo/cpu/ram easily overclocks to 4 GHz+
The OS and programs will be loaded on the SSD.
The HDDs go in a RAID5 and get project files.
GeForce GTX 275 has half the CUDA cores of the 295 at less than half the price, and double the 250 at less than double the price.


Make sure your software supports CUDA. There is no need to get a nice GPU if you are not going to use it - any non-integrated card will work.

You can save a few hundred dollars by dropping 3 hard disks if you are not trying to edit uncompressed video, but I would not recommend it. You don't need a fast hard drive I/O system for encoding, but it would be to your benefit to have separate disks for the project file, output file, and pagefile (and the SSD with your operating system is not the best place for your pagefile).

If you have a bigger budget, the top tier OCZ ram has tighter timings at the frequencies you'll want to run them at, and there are better SSD out there.

If you have an even bigger budget, talk to someone who knows about multi-processor server options. I hear the Xeon is good, but have not been trying to read about it.
October 29, 2009 6:35:44 AM

I am in the same boat, but have not been out of the loop since it began for me in 2004 with simple phtos in moviemaker. I could even p**s some of you off...

My first success was prescotts, even the 2.8e, (which got a bad rap by a popularized bonehead who reviewed it)

the 3.4e really did good, and learned in great disbelief..its still doing damn good. I am up to 1920x1080 editing...within a minute of big bad four cores...

it needs two rows of dual channel mode, HT enabled, two twinned drives or raid, and page file removed from os drive. Singular deep gigantic channels are the videos result..(I need no arguments after 350++ videos)

if you really want a true workstation, avoid the newbs, that means nvidia and amd. (sorry guys)..and dual cpus starting with em64t and 2mb caches are very good. again, aligning memories and old school tricks with the hard drives, either raid or twinned.

if you want a crazy fast encoder, ati vid cards with avivo has been a real sanity keeper.
if you want a true opinion, read this again and believe it. :sol: 
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October 30, 2009 7:46:46 AM

Gadish said:
Thanks for replying guys,

some guy on another forum suggested that what I'm doing is just graphical editing and not really Video editing and that i could do with a cheaper AMD processor.

What i do is get the movies from the DVcam to the PC, then chop them up, sequence them, add sound etc and compile the whole thing...

I can afford the ‏Core i7 920, s1366, 8MB or ‏Core i7 860, s1156, 8MB, with a good motherboard and 4GB of RAM. The question is, will those expensive processors give me significant improvement over the cheaper AMD versions for the kind of work I'm doing..?

What do you guys think?



If you could afford the 920, go for it! The Phenom 955 is recommendable only if you don't have the budget for a 920.

You may also want to take a look at this:
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/phenom-x4-965,2389-...


Though, what software are you using? The 920 could handle 8 threads at a time, while the 955 could handle 4. If your app could use all those resources then the 920 could zoom past even the 965.
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