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Hi HTPC folks, please forgive my ignorance on this topic. I tried checking out the FAQs and couldn't discover what I'm looking for.


A friend was asking about home video editing on a non-dedicated PC, and eventually I'd like a HTPC/Video editing CPU thingee. So I figured this was the Braintrust to put it to.


What would it need? Hardware/Software-wise. Processor, video cards, the works. Maybe a price level or two to chose from. Can you download composite video or does it have to be firewire?


Thanks for your thoughts.
 

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What kind of level are you aiming for?

You can get crap from a $1300 system (complete pc), or go all the way with a $1,000,000, Avid system :)
 

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This question pops up every once in a while and I always point to two sources wwwug.com

and Videoguys.com .


To give a ballpark figure anything around $1200 to $3000 could give you a decent setup. Just remember you would need lots of hard disk space. I am talking about 100GB free space if you go software based non-linear editing route with DV. Just one hour of DV is close to 13GB.


You will get more information from those two websites.


All the best.
 

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You need at least two drives (preferably SCSI)... one for the OS and one for the videofiles. (Avoid IBM-drives if you go for ATA). Later this fall, the new Serial ATA protocol will debut, and it may very well be suitable for editing video.

Check pricewatch or whatever it's called...


You need a dedicated DV editing card. There are plenty of reviews out there. You get what you pay for. Read the reviews and decide what you need to fork out with.


A breakout box is very nice to have.


Premiere is a very good piece of software.

I think Avid has released software for PC too, but I haven't tested it.

Same thing goes here: read reviews


Maybe you want Adobe After Effects too, but it'll cost ya :)


One important bit: You need a LARGE monitor. 21" is almost enough. Or two slightly smaller monitors.


A graphics card with a good DAC. Dualhead cards from Matrox and two monitors is highly recommended.

If you go for one monitor, ATI cards are nice too.

Don't go for Nvidia.


CPU... as fast as they come. Buy INTEL. Not for prestanda, but for the sound levels. They need less cooling and that will enable you to actually hear what you're doing :)


Memory: 256MB will suffice, 512MB is good. More than that will have no effect.


Patience and tranquilisers comes highly recommended too ;)
 

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you really need to decide at what level do u want to do editing. if you are looking to do pro editing as a job then u should expect to pay around $1000 ( pinnacle pro-one, matrox 2500) give or take a few hundred just for the card. and yes u could spend 10 - 100 grand but if u are looking to do home editing at a very nice level but not real time digital then u could spend as little as 100- 150 for an input / output card like the pinnacle studio 7 which comes with both the card and software. speaking of software keep in mind that some will cost u 3 -5 hundred ( after fx, premiere ) > Remember that if u decide to go high end to build your system around the card u choose not the other way around. . do your research and u will find some great forums ( pinnacles site, matrox site ) to help u. one last note. I personally prefer the amd chip over the pent. more bang for your buck and your drives should be fast but DO NOT need to be SCSI. Good luck
 

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My experience tells me that SCSI is preferable... but that's if you plan on doing a lot of work in long sessions.


ATA-drives are ok for lesser workloads
 

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IAGO....


Good point on the dual display and 2 drives ( i use 5) but I wasn't going into it that far. ? for u though... what have u found wrong with the IBM ATAs?? I have used a lot of them and no problems. on the other hand WD is in another bad slump. I would also suggest an on board raid ( ASUS, ABIT both have good ones ) but I do stress that if u are paying a fair amount for your card then pick it and build the system to suit it. One last ? why no more then 512 memory unless u are not using NT2K or XP. Appreciat your response


Bill
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by BillZ
IAGO....


Good point on the dual display and 2 drives ( i use 5) but I wasn't going into it that far. ? for u though... what have u found wrong with the IBM ATAs?? I have used a lot of them and no problems. on the other hand WD is in another bad slump. I would also suggest an on board raid ( ASUS, ABIT both have good ones ) but I do stress that if u are paying a fair amount for your card then pick it and build the system to suit it. One last ? why no more then 512 memory unless u are not using NT2K or XP. Appreciat your response


Bill
There are stability issues with 7200rpm drives from IBM.

IBM only acknowledge this with the 120GXP-series (for legal reasons). Users are recommended to use them less than 30hrs per week (or something like that), which makes them less than perfect for server applications or video editing.

Me, I'd go for the Matrox D740X-series if I was going to buy an ATA-drive today. But since I have plenty of other areas to work on with my system, I'm waiting to see price and performance of the Serial ATA this fall.

If the beforehand talk is anything to go by, it'll be as good or better than SCSI today. (But what will the CPU load be??)


IDE RAID is not adviseable if you don't have lots of money. The quality of the onboard circuitry is not high enough to gamble weeks of work on.

And SCSI RAID goes beyond the budget for most **** sapien :)


There simply aren't any applications that use that much memory... Windows ME exempted ;)

There are plenty of benchmarks out there to prove that.

Also, a friend of mine did a test to prove to his colleagues that they don't need 512MB by shutting off the disk cache in W2K and run a plethora of applications... including encoding SVCD, playing mp3, downloading from three threads, remote control his work computer and surfing flash intensive sites. (He's got an Athlon XP1600+)... And he never made it past 86% in memory useage.


Editing video could possibly be more memory intensive when you're rendering, but it won't swallow more than 512MB unless there's something wrong.
 
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