Latest post Thu, Oct 10 2019 3:46 AM by Stephen Ellis. 12 replies.
Page 1 of 1 (13 items)
Sort Posts: Previous Next
  • Mon, Jul 1 2019 6:16 AM

    Laptop for occasional Media Composer use

    Hi,

    I'm looking for a new PC laptop for very occasional Media Composer use.

    I spend my days editing on my big (and very non-mobile) workstation as a daily driver. It's solid and where I like to edit. Very occasionally I need to go on a plane or a boat and watch some rushes or some edits, and I need a laptop for this rare use-case.

    I'm very nervous about buying a laptop that isn't qualified by Avid, as I've had seen so many Avid issues in the past with non-spec hardware. But as I was scrolling through the qualified Windows laptop list today, I couldn't find one that was recent and qualified that wasn't total overkill both in price and specs for my use-case.

    I exclusively cut with transcoded, offline media. My sequences are almost always DNx36 media with few or no effects other than the occasional color correction, and a few million audio dissolves :) Restricting myself to the qualified laptop list locks me into a budget and spec that is very difficult to justify given this 'light load'.

    Can anyone help me? I want a laptop that is 'safe' to use with media composer - by which I mean won't suddenly not playback media - but doesn't cost a fortune. I want a 4k screen as I like looking at really tiny text, and a stylus as I also dabble in graphic art.

     

    Has anyone had any success with any laptops that meet these criteria. Are there any supported hardware specs other than the qualified laptop list?

     

     

     

    Media Composer 8.1; Matrox MX02/Avid Mojo DX;HP XW8400 Win7 x64 Pro. [view my complete system specs]
  • Mon, Jul 1 2019 8:24 AM In reply to

    Re: Laptop for occasional Media Composer use

    I have 2 HP Zbooks (one 17" one 15")

    The G2 models are cheap now and come with Quad i7 processors. Loaded with 32GB ram they have a thunderbolt 2 connection and USB3.

    The thunderbolt 2 is prefect for an AJA T-Tap for full screen output.

    The 17" has 3 drive bays internally so onboard media storage is no problem. The 15" I replace the DVD/CD with a drive caddy and have a 2TB hybrid drive in there. I can maintain DNX185 or AVC-Intra 100mbps no problem.

    Not tried the new 2019 version on these yet but both work fine with 2018

     

    ACI Moderator. I'm not employed by Avid or work for them. I just do this in my spare time. Normally using the current Media Composer version on My... [view my complete system specs]

     

    Broadcast & Post Production Consultant / Trainer  VET

     

    T 07581 201248 | E pat@vet.co.uk | W www.vet.co.uk |


    Media Composer V8.2 Review Background Render

    -

    Follow me on Twitter Pat_H_VET

  • Mon, Jul 1 2019 8:44 AM In reply to

    Re: Laptop for occasional Media Composer use

    Thanks Pat.

     

    It's certainly an option to get an older model (like a 2014 G2), just for running MC. However, ideally, I'd get something that I wanted for my other laptop needs too (i.e. a thin, modern computer for a bit of graphic design, lots of coding, emails etc). Those other needs begin to preclude a 2014 laptop. i.e. 4k screen / stylus input / 2019-level battery life.

    The MC support is certainly forcing some choices on me as long as I stay qualified.  If it wasn't for MC, I'd just lump for a Lenovo X1 Xtreme or the like. Would be great if Avid could supply a component/driver support list rather than the very restricted hardware list.

    Under consideration:

    - ZBook G5 - Avid supported, comes with a very hefty price tag.

    - ZStudio x360 - Avid supported, comes with a very hefty price tag

    - Lenovo P53 - Avid supported, comes with a very hefty price tag

     

    If I knew MC would just work, I'd go for something like the following (which are around half the price of the overloaded workstation laptops).

    - Lenovo X1 Carbon / X1 Extreme

    - Dell XPS 15

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Media Composer 8.1; Matrox MX02/Avid Mojo DX;HP XW8400 Win7 x64 Pro. [view my complete system specs]
  • Mon, Jul 1 2019 10:39 AM In reply to

    • bmedia
    • Not Ranked
    • Joined on Thu, Oct 13 2005
    • Princeton, NJ
    • Posts 96
    • Points 1,130

    Re: Laptop for occasional Media Composer use

    I just replaced my battle tested 2008 MacBook Pro with a ZBook Studo 360 (2.7 GHz Intel, 16GB RAM). So far I like it a lot.

    The form factor is great and it's lighter than my old MBP. Other than ability to run newer versions of MC, portability was my main reason for purchase.

    The only downer has been the 4K resolution. It's just not usuable at 3840x2160, not just too small to read, too small to use the interface. AVID throws up an "unsupported screen resolution message" if you don't have the screen size and zoom factor set to a combination it likes. I usually end up just editing in 1920x1080. (This is with MC 2018, I haven't tried it with 2019 yet)

    My only other suggestion is to get it configured the way you want from the get go. I ended up installing a second SSD drive in mine after the fact. Prying off the rear cover wasn't impossible, but it wasn't easy.

    HP ZBook Studio x360 G5 / 2.7 GHz Intel Xeon E2176M / NVIDIA Quadro P1000 / 16GB RAM / WIN10 Pro / MC 2019.8 [view my complete system specs]
  • Mon, Jul 1 2019 11:30 AM In reply to

    Re: Laptop for occasional Media Composer use

    Hi,

     

    Yes. I was looking at the ZBook Studio as my main option if I was going to go Qualified and therefore expensive. Good to know that it's not really useable on the 4k resolution. That's a shame, as it's really the only way to get enough screen real-estate. I did have some scaling issues a few versions back with my dual 4k monitors on my desktop, but I felt they had resolved that in more recent releases. FYI You might find the new 2019 release is a better experience from that perspective too as they're re-written the interface. But - be warned - the new release is quite buggy in places - nothing major I've seen yet, just irritations (little annoyances like: Tab doesn't work when you're editing bin columns) .

     

     

     

    Media Composer 8.1; Matrox MX02/Avid Mojo DX;HP XW8400 Win7 x64 Pro. [view my complete system specs]
  • Mon, Jul 1 2019 1:59 PM In reply to

    Re: Laptop for occasional Media Composer use

    4K resolution on a 15" screen is always going to be a struggle. Everything will be tiny. And to be honest what do you gain?

    I'd operate my laptop screen at HD 1920x1080 if I need a better output I'll use an external IO solution.

    ACI Moderator. I'm not employed by Avid or work for them. I just do this in my spare time. Normally using the current Media Composer version on My... [view my complete system specs]

     

    Broadcast & Post Production Consultant / Trainer  VET

     

    T 07581 201248 | E pat@vet.co.uk | W www.vet.co.uk |


    Media Composer V8.2 Review Background Render

    -

    Follow me on Twitter Pat_H_VET

  • Mon, Jul 1 2019 3:47 PM In reply to

    Re: Laptop for occasional Media Composer use

    It's pretty personal for sure. My last laptop was a retina MacBook Pro running Windows in bootcamp (now broken) and I loved that extra screen real estate and resolution. Not everyone can read such tiny writing, but I can and it's a must for me.

    To be honest I'd go MacBook again if the bootcamp drivers went so shoddy and if they had touch on the screen and not where the function keys should be.

     

     

     

    Media Composer 8.1; Matrox MX02/Avid Mojo DX;HP XW8400 Win7 x64 Pro. [view my complete system specs]
  • Mon, Jul 1 2019 8:00 PM In reply to

    • Mercer
    • Top 500 Contributor
    • Joined on Thu, Apr 15 2010
    • UK
    • Posts 422
    • Points 5,310

    Re: Laptop for occasional Media Composer use

    Prior to getting a qualified HP laptop, I used a upper range mutlimedia/consummer i7 quad core with 16GB ram and to be honest for the HD broadcast stuff I mainly edit, it was as reliable and smooth as the much more potent ZBook, upto 2018.12.5.

    But I do second HP and FHD screens, even on a 17". The top models from the big 3 are almost identical but the HP, worked out cheapest (The G6 is just around the corner), has great tooless access, and came with 3 year next day onsite warranty.

    But for the main point I was cutting a longform, DNxHD 36 doc on the previous laptop without issues, at all. I even onlined a couple of jobs on it, with no issues.

    MC with Symphony option, 2019.6, HP ZBook 17 G5, i7-8850H 6 core/64GB ram/512 M2 ssd/Nvidia Quadro P3200/FHD, HP Thunderbolt Dock G2, BMD Intensity Shuttle... [view my complete system specs]
  • Tue, Jul 2 2019 9:18 PM In reply to

    Re: Laptop for occasional Media Composer use

    Thanks for the response. I'd be curious to know what laptop you were using.

     

    It would be great if there were some guidance from Avid on the hardware combinations that were most likely to supported: i.e. NVIDIA Quado versions / chipsets / etc.

    Media Composer 8.1; Matrox MX02/Avid Mojo DX;HP XW8400 Win7 x64 Pro. [view my complete system specs]
  • Tue, Jul 2 2019 9:46 PM In reply to

    • RalphC
    • Top 50 Contributor
    • Joined on Wed, Sep 2 2015
    • Posts 2,037
    • Points 22,570
    • Avid Customer Advocate
      Avid Customer Service
      Avid Employee
      SystemAdministrator

    Re: Laptop for occasional Media Composer use

    Stephen Ellis:
    It would be great if there were some guidance from Avid on the hardware combinations that were most likely to supported: i.e. NVIDIA Quado versions / chipsets / etc.

     

    We have the qualified list of machine for this.

     

     

     

    RalphC

    MacBook Pro 15 2018 Intel Core i7 2.6GHz Mac 10.13.6 Intel UHD 630. [view my complete system specs]
  • Tue, Jul 2 2019 10:02 PM In reply to

    Re: Laptop for occasional Media Composer use

    Hi Ralph,

     

    I only see the qualified machines on that list.

     

    As per the original post, the qualified machines are all very expensive and complete overkill for my mild offline needs (or creakingly old). I've run MC on machines not on that list before - as have other posters -  with varying degrees of success. What I was hoping for was some guidance about 'safe' hardware to choose if I veered off the qualified hardware list (i.e. chipset, graphics cards etc).

    I thought I'd seen a post somewhere from Marianna with this information, but I can't find it.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Media Composer 8.1; Matrox MX02/Avid Mojo DX;HP XW8400 Win7 x64 Pro. [view my complete system specs]
  • Wed, Jul 3 2019 12:29 PM In reply to

    • Mercer
    • Top 500 Contributor
    • Joined on Thu, Apr 15 2010
    • UK
    • Posts 422
    • Points 5,310

    Re: Laptop for occasional Media Composer use

    Hi Stephen,

    It was a Lenovo Z510 with a Haswell Quad Core i7-4702MQ, Geforce CT740M (2GB Vram) and 16GB ram, 512GB SSD with Win 10 Pro. It cost just just over 1200 euros in that config, I believe. Oh I upgraded to a FHD wide gamut screen for an extra 50 quid too. TBH it is very long in the tooth (2014/15) and for the same money you should be able to get something far better now. But as I say it ran, uptill very recently, 2018.12.5 quite happily in HD broadcast with DNxHD 36/120 8bit from usb 3.0 external raid storage.

    Avid's qualification is quite rightly very strict and limited to ISV certified workstations, but it includes a lot of, necessarily, extreme case uses, which the average offline broacast scenario will not use day in and day out. Don't get me wrong 4K was a struggle (but I even did that for a commercial) and BMD resolve was hard going.

    Even though Avid recommends minimum dual scalable Xeons for a full 4K workflow, after quite a bit of testing, the new Zbook is working very happily with both Avid and Resolve studio for such workflows. I perhaps wouldn't want to get into any heavy Fusion 3D composting but colour grading and finishing with a DNxID and a good grading monitor, I would be happy to do - which is my plan.

    MC with Symphony option, 2019.6, HP ZBook 17 G5, i7-8850H 6 core/64GB ram/512 M2 ssd/Nvidia Quadro P3200/FHD, HP Thunderbolt Dock G2, BMD Intensity Shuttle... [view my complete system specs]
  • Thu, Oct 10 2019 3:46 AM In reply to

    Re: Laptop for occasional Media Composer use

    Thanks for your help everyone. I ended up with an HP Zbook  X360. I'm really impressed and have not looked back.

    It's been incredibly stable with my Media Composer tasks. I use the full resolution of the 4k screen to give me enough screen estate to cut on the move. It's giving my desktop a run for the money, and I'm thinking of getting a dock to attach my dual 4k monitors and use this as my exclusive editing machine.

     

    Thanks for all your help everyone

    Media Composer 8.1; Matrox MX02/Avid Mojo DX;HP XW8400 Win7 x64 Pro. [view my complete system specs]
Page 1 of 1 (13 items)

© Copyright 2011 Avid Technology, Inc.  Terms of Use |  Privacy Policy |  Site Map |  Find a Reseller