Video Production Advice
Following a previous post of mine about the Matrox MX02 Mini Max, I received a follow-up question from an Iranian Videographer, who asks for advice about the Matrox MX02 Mini MAX and Adobe Premiere Pro CS5 on his iMac.
Video Production Question
I’m editing on adobe premiere CS5, and also AE CS5 on an iMac core i5 with 8 GB of DDR3 Memory, 1st : while i’m working on a Full HD project, by any simple changes of color levels or adding a dissolve, i have to render the shot to see it on realtime and by adding more filters and effects or using a dynamic link between AE & Premiere the render’s getting harder and the export is getting too too longer (about 25 minutes for exporting a 5 minute video clip !!!)
I am going to buy a “Mxo2 mini max” to solve the render problem and get rid of these render things,
Am i doing a right?!! or i need to upgrade my iMac to a core i7 with 12 or 16 GB of memory?
what do you think?
and thank you by th way …
Video Production Response
Great questions. Yeah, you are doing it wrong. When editing on an iMac with Adobe Premiere Pro, your editing experience will be very unsatisfying. Editing on any computer, Windows or Mac that doesn’t have an approved NVidia CUDA card and to a lesser extent some of the Radeon cards on last year’s Macbook Pro laptops, means you are relying on the CPU in the computer to do all the video rendering and encoding.
This was ok when we edited SD video but with HD video there is almost 7x more pixel information and I find as editors we colour correct and apply effects more now than 10 years ago.
The CPU is also not as efficient at processing video as compared to a dedicated hardware solution like the Matrox RT.X2 which when paired with Adobe Premiere Pro CS3, CS4, and CS5 offered real-time effects, accelerated exports, and other goodies like the Matrox IBP codec and HDMI monitoring.
When Adobe announced that Premiere Pro CS5.0 was going to support GPU acceleration with approved NVidia CUDA cards much of the benefit of running a hardware solution like the Matrox RT.X2 became obsolete because the two couldn’t work together at the same time and the GPU solution was very good.
Unfortunately neither of these solutions work on an iMac because the RT.X2 isn’t supported on Macs and iMacs all have the wrong video card. They also can’t be upgraded to anything that is both good enough to provide any benefit to Premiere Pro and is supported.
Unfortunately the Matrox MX02 Mini Max doesn’t provide any acceleration for effects and colour correction so you will not notice any benefits to real-time previews. But it will accelerate the export times to H.264 significantly. I pair the Matrox MX02 Mini Max with my Windows Corei7 laptop when I need fast export times on a mobile device.
I do not believe upgrading your iMac to a core i7 with 16GB of memory will do much. What you really want is a computer that has a supported GPU card. On the Mac side there are very few supported graphics cards but the obvious one is the GTX 285, although that was end of life before CS5 launched. You can buy them used for $150-$250 and this makes them a great deal, if you can find one. There are more expensive Quadro cards but they are a lot more expensive and I don’t feel they offer the best value. The new Macbook Pros with Retina display have a supported video card but this is a laptop and for the money you could buy a much faster Windows system. You would also need to upgrade to CS6 for proper support.
A much better plan is to admit that when it come to video editing, editing on a Mac is a bad idea. I’m sorry, but it is. The proof is here. Apple doesn’t care about this segment of the market and waiting until next year for Apple to release new products that are 1/2 as good as a Windows system is getting old for many Mac users, which is why they are ditching Macs in droves for Windows. Just ask FCP users. And then ask MacPro users. Heck even iPhone users are feeling their phone is falling behind Samsung Android models. My 2 year old Windows laptop is still faster than the latest Retina Display MBP so I wouldn’t recommend that as a solution but it really is the only Mac solution that has decent video editing performance when paired with Adobe Premiere Pro CS6.
Sorry if this all sounds harsh but you asked and I answered.