Latest post Fri, Jul 10 2020 2:41 AM by mhamilton. 10 replies.
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  • Tue, Jul 7 2020 5:03 PM

    • mhamilton
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    new MacBook Pro 16": Q: 32GB RAM enough? Q: which ext. hd for editing?

    Hi there,

    I've given up trying to pull my 2010 Mac Pro, and/or 2013 MacBook Pro, kicking and screaming, into this new 4K world. Firewire and USB-2 ports just aren't up to it.

    In case it matters, btw, I'm running Media Composer v. 8.9.4

    So... if I get a new MacBook Pro*, I'm wondering about a couple of things:

    1. is 32GB enough RAM, or should I get 64GB? One problem with these MacBook Pros is that they're not user-configurable after purchase. I'll be editing 4K, but I'm hoping to transcode to DNxHR LB first. I'll be using FrameFlex as well, I hope, to re-frame some of the shots.

    2. All the camera files that I've been given are 4K, and they're on a 10TB USB 3.1 hard drive. I've recently looked at an Avid conversion chart, and see that the "compression rate for DNxHR LB" is 22:1.   I think that means that I won't need a 10TB drive to store my transcoded files on. In fact, if my math is right, I should be able to store them on a 1TB drive (or even smaller). Is my math right? Or am I missing something?

    The internal drive in a new MacBook Pro is a 1TB SSD. I could get a bigger SSD drive, but I don't ever store much on my internal hard drive which, because it's my boot drive, I leave out of the Avid drive list**. So I'll need an external drive—is a Thunderbolt-3 the best kind to get?

    Thanks very much for any advice, Malcolm

    * the reason I'm not going for a Mac Pro is the exhorbitant cost (I'm almost retired) and the reason I'm not going for a Mac Mini is because the cost savings become less attractive once I factor in the cost of an external GPU (which, according to a thread I read on this site, I'm not even sure Avid would recognize), and I'm not sure I'll have much use for a Mac Mini after this next big editing job, whereas a MacBook Pro will be very versatile for me for years to come, even if all I'm doing is writing and emailing.

    **or... does Avid work better if you've got a bigger SSD boot drive?

    Mac Pro 6-Core 3.3GHz • OSX 10.9.1 • Media Composer v7.0.3 [view my complete system specs]
  • Tue, Jul 7 2020 6:31 PM In reply to

    Re: new MacBook Pro 16": Q: 32GB RAM enough? Q: which ext. hd for editing?

    I'd say 32GB is enough but what about in 2 years time?

     

    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]

     

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  • Tue, Jul 7 2020 8:47 PM In reply to

    • mhamilton
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    Re: new MacBook Pro 16": Q: 32GB RAM enough? Q: which ext. hd for editing?

    Pat Horridge:

    I'd say 32GB is enough but what about in 2 years time?

    As in... when everyone's editing 8K? (arghhhh).

    The local Apple store where I live has a 16" MBP model with 32GB of RAM, which is $500 cheaper (Cdn.) than the 64GB version. But it's got a 2TB SSD internal drive, which is a $500 upgrade over the 1TB internal SSD drive I was looking at.

    It seems to me that a 1TB internal drive is fine, because I've never been the type to store everything (eg. music, photos, movies) on my laptop drive, and one isn't supposed to use the boot drive in Avid, correct? (the Apple salesman was saying the internal drive is way faster than even an external SSD drive, and that he uses his internal drive when he edits using Final Cut).

    Pat, what would you do for an external drive? Can I keep the original 4K camera files on the external USB 3.1 drive, and transcode directly from that drive to DNxHR LB on a new external drive, which then becomes the drive that Avid uses? If that's the right workflow, should I price a couple of external SSD drives, or would a Thunderbolt 3 drive be fine for the transcoded files? Sorry to hit you with more questions, Pat, so only if you don't mind——would a 1 TB drive be enough for the transcoded files? And then would I need a separate external drive as well to keep Avid happy? Also—whatever external drive(s) I get doesn't have to be portable, or waterproof or anything like that (I'll be editing here in my home office). Given that, is there any particular drive that you'd recommend?

    Thanks so much, Malcolm

    Mac Pro 6-Core 3.3GHz • OSX 10.9.1 • Media Composer v7.0.3 [view my complete system specs]
  • Tue, Jul 7 2020 9:52 PM In reply to

    • morsey
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    Re: new MacBook Pro 16": Q: 32GB RAM enough? Q: which ext. hd for editing?

    I have the 16-inch with 32gig of ram and I cut with 1920x1080 DNxHD LB. Can't speak for other resolutions but it's fine for that. I don't think ram will hold you up in any way cutting offline. If you see your workflow being the same for the next few years or so you should be good. I tend to stick with the same workflow and a particular version of Avid that is stable and try to get about 5 years out of the machine. I find if I need to upgrade the ram, it's always in conjunction with other components, so I don't get caught up in maxing out everything unless it's cheap.

    1TB is fine. Drive space is the easiest 'upgrade' after purchase as you can't upgrade CPU, Ram, etc. By that I mean you can just hook up an external drive. I went with 2TB because I run the media internally and it's also my home computer which stores documents, photos, etc. I also don't like hooking up external drives as I need to be on the go sometimes. 

    Keep in mind you will need to use MC 2020 and for some reason the machines fan is quite audible when playing back the timeline.

    Any questions or tests you want me to do hit me up.

  • Tue, Jul 7 2020 10:08 PM In reply to

    • mhamilton
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    Re: new MacBook Pro 16": Q: 32GB RAM enough? Q: which ext. hd for editing?

    morsey:
    I went with 2TB because I run the media internally

    morsey, I really appreciate hearing from someone who's editing with the very machine I'm wanting to buy! I'm curious about your statement above, that you run the media internally. Does this mean that your transcoded (or imported) Avid files are on your internal drive? Or that Avid puts all its media files on your internal drive?

    I can imagine this would be the fastest way for Avid to edit files. I won't need to edit "on the go", but at the same time, I'm hoping I don't get stuttering and freezing if I end up with an external drive (whether SSD or Thunderbolt 3).

    Now... regarding this:

    "you will need to use MC 2020"

    I was hoping I could still use MC 8.9.4 (for which I have a perpetual license), which has AMA-linking and FrameFlex...

    Is there something else I'll need, that's only available with the 2020 subscription model?

    Thanks so much!

    Malcolm

     

     

    Mac Pro 6-Core 3.3GHz • OSX 10.9.1 • Media Composer v7.0.3 [view my complete system specs]
  • Tue, Jul 7 2020 10:28 PM In reply to

    • morsey
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    Re: new MacBook Pro 16": Q: 32GB RAM enough? Q: which ext. hd for editing?

    mhamilton:

    morsey, I really appreciate hearing from someone who's editing with the very machine I'm wanting to buy! I'm curious about your statement above, that you run the media internally. Does this mean that your transcoded (or imported) Avid files are on your internal drive? Or that Avid puts all its media files on your internal drive?

    I can imagine this would be the fastest way for Avid to edit files. I won't need to edit "on the go", but at the same time, I'm hoping I don't get stuttering and freezing if I end up with an external drive (whether SSD or Thunderbolt 3).

    I only edit on the local drive for a convenience factor. You can store the Avid media on the internal drive or any external drive. I do edit off USB drives occasionally, just consumer ones that have been delivered to me and I've never had an issue with them. Offline material of course. Was recently cutting something small on a Segate portable drive and it never stuttered. For me the only limitation I have is how slow I edit ;)

    mhamilton:

    I was hoping I could still use MC 8.9.4 (for which I have a perpetual license), which has AMA-linking and FrameFlex...

    Is there something else I'll need, that's only available with the 2020 subscription model?

    You, me and I think many others. The 16inch Macbook Pro only runs Catalina, therefore you have to use MC 2020. You do not need to convert to a subscription model for the purposes of running 2020 your perpetual license allows you to use any version. I have a perpetual license, I was happy with 8.8 but I had to use 2020.

  • Tue, Jul 7 2020 11:12 PM In reply to

    • mhamilton
    • Top 75 Contributor
    • Joined on Thu, Oct 13 2005
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    Re: new MacBook Pro 16": Q: 32GB RAM enough? Q: which ext. hd for editing?

    such good and helpful information.

    I'm afraid I'm going to have to go with an external drive (because of his 10TB mountain of files) but at least I now know it's doable. I'll try to get an SSD external drive, for my transcoded files, if I can afford it.

    And yes, I now remember, I've seen threads (for years) about getting a new Apple machine that comes loaded with the latest Mac OS and having to deal with a new version of MC—or wait for a new version of MC. I'm very happy to know that I can use MC 2020 without having to subscribe. For all future HD editing that I do (which, given the fact that I normally shoot my own material, with an HD-only camera, is what I'll go back to doing after this project) I'll just go back to my old Mac Pro, that still runs, not sure, High Sierra I think.

    Anyway, thanks again for your help. And your advice too, Pat.

    Regards, Malcolm

    Mac Pro 6-Core 3.3GHz • OSX 10.9.1 • Media Composer v7.0.3 [view my complete system specs]
  • Thu, Jul 9 2020 6:51 PM In reply to

    • bonang
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    Re: new MacBook Pro 16": Q: 32GB RAM enough? Q: which ext. hd for editing?

    Hi Malcolm,

    Much good advice already present here. Go external, and go greater than 1TB, as you'll appreciate the extra space in time. Yes, go for SSD, but you might be confusing SSD and TB3 - TB3 is a connection, SSD a type of hard drive. It is common to have SSD drives in an external RAID that connects, e.g., via TB3. I'm using a Lacie 8TB 2big Dock, on an HP zbook via TB3 and it's been flawless so far.

    Avid MC 2020.6 with Symphony option | HP zbook 17" G3 / i7 6820HQ / 32GB RAM / 512GB SSD / WIN 10 PRO 64 / nVidia m3000m / BMD UltraStudio 4K [view my complete system specs]

    Keith

  • Thu, Jul 9 2020 11:37 PM In reply to

    • mhamilton
    • Top 75 Contributor
    • Joined on Thu, Oct 13 2005
    • Ottawa, Canada
    • Posts 1,589
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    Re: new MacBook Pro 16": Q: 32GB RAM enough? Q: which ext. hd for editing?

    hmmm. I started googling for Thunderbolt 3 SSD drive enclosures after reading your post—thank you for clarifying things. Options I've found so far are quite expensive, I guess because to get speed and also redundancy (if that's the right word) you need at least four drives. Anyway, I'll keep looking although I have to ask—and I don't want to jinx my next project by asking about this but I'll ask anyway—aren't SSD drives incredibly dependable, maybe in part because there's nothing spinning? In other words, if I just got a couple of 2TB external SSDs, connected via Thunderbolt 3, do I really need to worry about RAID, either for redundancy, or for speed? I'm starting off with 10TB of big 4K camera files, but I'll be transcoding to 4k low-bit-rate DNxHR LB 'proxy' files for editing.

    I'm also thinking of partitioning the internal SSD (boot drive) of the MacBook Pro that I'm planning on getting: leaving Catalina on one partition of the drive, and putting High Sierra on the other partition. Why? Because I looked at MC 2020.6, which is needed for Catalina and it looks SO DIFFERENT from MC 8.9.4, which is what I'm used to. I googled this, and it seems to be something that people do. Lazy way out, but I think by the time I've finally got all these 4K pieces in place, I'll really need to get editing, and not re-learning Media Composer.

    Thanks for your advice Keith,

    Malcolm

    Mac Pro 6-Core 3.3GHz • OSX 10.9.1 • Media Composer v7.0.3 [view my complete system specs]
  • Thu, Jul 9 2020 11:44 PM In reply to

    • morsey
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    Re: new MacBook Pro 16": Q: 32GB RAM enough? Q: which ext. hd for editing?

    mhamilton:

    I'm also thinking of partitioning the internal SSD (boot drive) of the MacBook Pro that I'm planning on getting: leaving Catalina on one partition of the drive, and putting High Sierra on the other partition. Why? Because I looked at MC 2020.6, which is needed for Catalina and it looks SO DIFFERENT from MC 8.9.4, which is what I'm used to. I googled this, and it seems to be something that people do.

    Unfortunately you won't be able to on the 16-inch Macbook Pro. It runs Catalina at a minimum.

  • Fri, Jul 10 2020 2:41 AM In reply to

    • mhamilton
    • Top 75 Contributor
    • Joined on Thu, Oct 13 2005
    • Ottawa, Canada
    • Posts 1,589
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    Re: new MacBook Pro 16": Q: 32GB RAM enough? Q: which ext. hd for editing?

    gulp. Thanks for the heads up.

    I guess I'll just have to start looking at the youtube tutorials.

    Malcolm

    Mac Pro 6-Core 3.3GHz • OSX 10.9.1 • Media Composer v7.0.3 [view my complete system specs]
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