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PC Specs. for HD video editing - not just fast rendering.

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June 21, 2010 9:33:02 AM

Hello,
Have been searching forums for a while to get some idea of basic system requirements for video editing - I don't really mind if I have to wait an extra 5 minutes for a final render but just want smooth previewing of HD on a second monitor using Sony Vegas with a few effects transitions etc. applied. Am I better off with the fastest clock speed I can get or will a quad core at lower speeds actually be better - again not after lightning render times and don't care if it final renders 11.523% faster or not.
June 21, 2010 3:04:17 PM

not sure about Vegas, but for premier more cores FTW. Just depends on how well multi-threaded the program is.
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June 21, 2010 7:50:38 PM

Vegas does not like AMD nearly as much as it likes Intel. Vegas tends to be optimized for Intel SSE2/SSE3 and SSE4.

That having been said... any Quad Core i7 system will likely end up being your best bet in terms of price/performance for Sony Vegas.

I'm only mentioning this because I am big on video editing and encoding and own both Phenom II and Core i7 systems.

As for Premiere, it tends to perform better on a Core i7 then it does Phenom II but with a nicely clocked Phenom II X6 you can get some decent performance levels.
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June 22, 2010 1:18:36 AM

Thanks Guys

Would an i7 really be necessary just for smooth editing/previewing - not fast rendering - I understand would be the best (although I'm not too sure a slow quad of just any type/brand would necessarily be better than a clocked up multithreaded 2 core - once again just from an editing not rendering perspective) but is it really required for occasional editing of HD footage out of say a DSLR or prosumer video camera (which is usually quite heavily compressed to some form of mpeg4).

Back when I started editing all the forums were constantly on about making sure you are using the latest Pentium 4's with hyperthreading yet my stripped down XP OS with a crappy Celeron processor has handled virtually all the standard definition stuff I have thrown at it - renders very slowly but who cares - that's coffee and cigs time after a few hours watching the preview monitor - but I have never really edited heavily compressed footage like today HD formats.

I suppose what I'm really asking - is an i7 really necessary to decompress HD video and run smoothly in Sony Vegas on a PC. Have had a few goes on a basic IMac with 3.06 Core 2 Duo and seems to play, basic edit etc. OK. I also suppose for me it's about price point - can get a decent Core 2 Duo with 4g good quality ram, motherboard, video card etc for under a grand yet a similar i7 double this. I know I'd be future proofing and all that but just at this point in time is an i7 really necessary for those of us who just need to do a project every few weeks.
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June 22, 2010 1:29:20 AM

There is no reason to get a Core2Duo system, an I3 would perform better and is cheaper than the majority of the Core2 line up.
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June 22, 2010 1:51:58 AM

Yes - your 100% right - just did a bit of a search and the i7's really aren't that much more for what you get either.

Question answered - an i7 I will get.

Thanks All
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Best solution

June 22, 2010 4:02:03 AM

I know the question is answered, but I just want to point out that the amount and speed of RAM you have is just as important as the power of the CPU.

In newer Adobe applications (CS4, and especially CS5), a decent graphics card with a decent amount of VRAM can boost preview performance (I'm not sure how significantly though).

I had a Core2 Duo system with 4GB RAM and upgraded a few months ago to an i7 with 9GB RAM because (despite being only two years old) the Core2 system was starting to really struggle to meet my power demands (I was using up all the physical RAM running only two programs for production). I was going to get 6GB of RAM for my i7, but I am SO pleased I got 9GB because I usually use 90% of it when working in (HD and SD) video and everything still goes blazing fast.
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June 22, 2010 6:10:29 AM

Thanks very much for the info - it's one of the other things I was contemplating - spend a little less on processor power and spend extra on quality motherboard, ram, card etc.

But now I've looked closer at some pricing it's really not much more to get an i7 and quality gear. A few hundred now should save any hair tearing later.

Thanks
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June 22, 2010 8:13:37 AM

look mate
get i7 9's its better than 8's in qpi link then for video get ati 5850 it comes with ati stream technology its desinged for HD video playback or video editing or if you have extra cash get 5870 instead of 5850
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June 22, 2010 9:15:20 AM

Yep - was looking at a 930 - thanks for video advice.
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June 29, 2010 1:41:34 AM

Best answer selected by Roy01.
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February 4, 2012 3:27:36 PM

Roy01 said:
Thanks Guys

Would an i7 really be necessary just for smooth editing/previewing - not fast rendering - I understand would be the best (although I'm not too sure a slow quad of just any type/brand would necessarily be better than a clocked up multithreaded 2 core - once again just from an editing not rendering perspective) but is it really required for occasional editing of HD footage out of say a DSLR or prosumer video camera (which is usually quite heavily compressed to some form of mpeg4).

Back when I started editing all the forums were constantly on about making sure you are using the latest Pentium 4's with hyperthreading yet my stripped down XP OS with a crappy Celeron processor has handled virtually all the standard definition stuff I have thrown at it - renders very slowly but who cares - that's coffee and cigs time after a few hours watching the preview monitor - but I have never really edited heavily compressed footage like today HD formats.

I suppose what I'm really asking - is an i7 really necessary to decompress HD video and run smoothly in Sony Vegas on a PC. Have had a few goes on a basic IMac with 3.06 Core 2 Duo and seems to play, basic edit etc. OK. I also suppose for me it's about price point - can get a decent Core 2 Duo with 4g good quality ram, motherboard, video card etc for under a grand yet a similar i7 double this. I know I'd be future proofing and all that but just at this point in time is an i7 really necessary for those of us who just need to do a project every few weeks.

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