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You are here: MacNN Forums > Hardware - Troubleshooting and Discussion > Mac Notebooks > Best External hard drive set up for Video editing on my Macbook pro???

Best External hard drive set up for Video editing on my Macbook pro???
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brodown
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Dec 27, 2007, 03:40 PM
 
Hello everyone, I have a question concerning an external hard drive set up for my Macbook pro, the specs of my laptop are: 2.16ghz, 2gb RAM, 100gb 7200rpm hard drive. I've had this laptop for about a year and I love it, even more than my ex powermac g5. I've been out shooting for the year and havent done much editing at all but im about to start my new project and i need to get an external set up. I know nothing about them so what would be a good set up for me. I will be working with about 3-5hours of DV footage shot with a 3ccd sony vx1000 camcorder. And i will be editing on FCP, dvd studio pro, and Adobe AE. The largest concern for me is loss of quality of the footage, or glitches in the footage from putting it on an eternal and then editing with the external. The video im doing will be about 1 hour long total. I dont know exactly how this works or what to buy. I need to purchase this stuff by the end of the month so if anyone could help me i'd really appreciate it. Thanks in advance
     
markponcelet
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Dec 27, 2007, 05:07 PM
 
I purchased this dual-3.5" SATA hard drive enclosure early this year. It's a firewire 800 device, which gives you plenty of speed for data moving back and forth. As a RAID enclosure, it can make its two internal hard drives appear as one drive to your computer. I find this convenient, but it may not make a huge difference to you.

Advantages here are that the enclosure doesn't cost all that much, and allows you to combine two less-expensive drives into one huge volume. It can then be chained with other FW800 enclosures (if you get more later on). The enclosure is quiet and looks great!

The drive has other RAID functions, like mirroring, but OS X has that built-in anyway. Since you didn't mention anything about needing high reliability or security, I imagine this will serve your needs fine.
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brodown  (op)
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Dec 27, 2007, 05:14 PM
 
the problem is that my MBP is FW400 which sucks...will that be a problem??? also i am concerned with reliability because all of my footage and the video im editing will be on this drive, what drive would you recommend? thanks
     
markponcelet
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Dec 27, 2007, 05:30 PM
 
FW400 will be slower. But according to a professional video editor in the next building, you will be fine as long as your video is standard definition.

I recommend you use an external enclosure like this one and keep any backups on a separate volume. (Maybe another external drive of the same size?)

You can use any SATA 3.5" drive in these enclosures. If you want to use RAID functions for some reason, make sure the two drives are the same model and size. I just bought two Seagate SATA drives off the same site (Macsales.com is pretty inexpensive a lot of the time, and they often offer discounts over at that coupon place ... dealmac.com, I think it is).

You can still chain drives together using FW400. But I think this enclosure only has ONE FW400 port on the back of it. Somewhere in that site they have a FW400 version of the same drive, but you'd only save like $10. Better to spend a little more so that you can take advantage of FW800 if you should ever get a new machine.
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brodown  (op)
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Dec 27, 2007, 07:13 PM
 
thanks again, I really have no idea what drive to get...they all look decent be it WD or seagate, all about the same price range too, I think 2-250 gb harddrives or 2-320s would be fine...is it bad to raid them? if so why?
I would think if i raided it that if one of the harddrive went bad the other mirror would have it backed up, is that the case? sorry for all of the questions...also if you could ad some links to the drives that would be the best for me that would be great, or any other suggestions for another system such as these:
2 of these: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16822136011
with 1 of these:http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16817332006
OR
this: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16822148137
with this: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16817146603
Stuff i found in previous posts, i really like the enclosure you posted...that one looks the best so far, but i guess performance is more important and im hoping that will be just as good..i just want to get the right thing so i can start on this project and have it work well
     
silver
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Dec 27, 2007, 07:44 PM
 
Raid 0 is stripe which is very good for speed. Raid 1 is mirror which is good for storage. Raid 0 gives you the most storage space and speed but if a drive goes so does all your data. Raid 1 on the other hand would just mirror your data no speed increase and half the storage space of raid 0.

For me i'd go raid 1/0 or 10, maybe even raid 5 but for both setups you'll need 4 drives minimum.

There's a pretty good thread on the subject over in the MacPro/PowerMac section.


Cheers
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markponcelet
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Dec 27, 2007, 07:47 PM
 
I don't really have any suggestions as to the brand name of the drive you get. They all seem pretty much the same to me. Might want to aim a little higher on the size, though. To me, 500 GB of total space (two 250 GB drives) seems very small. At home, I believe I have two 500GB drives in my enclosure, for a total of 1 TB. Just calculate your price-per-Gigabyte (PPG) and compare lots of different drives. At the time, the PPM for anything above 500GB was just horrendously expensive. And it's not uncommon for a smaller drive to cost more per gigabyte than a larger version. So shop carefully.

There's nothing inherently bad about RAID. I initially considered mirroring the two drives in my enclosure for the automatic backup it provides, but decided against it at the last moment. Why? Because a RAID mirror effectively cuts your available storage in half. 50% for the data you want to store, and 50% for its mirrored backup.

RAID is a very robust way to make a backup. If you absolutely, positively cannot lose any data, it might be the way to go. But just as a professional user, you may be better served by less regular Time Machine backups on a separate volume. (While RAID mirrors may be more secure, the data is still housed in that same external enclosure. A separate volume could be stored in a separate location. In other words, when you spill beer on your enclosure, your other volume is high and dry.)

Some thoughts on the links you posted:

I have a feeling that your storage space will fill up quickly. Mine sure did, and I just work with static images. So buy large!

This
enclosure doesn't look so hot. The absence of FW800 may bite you in the future. In addition, this enclosure apparently only takes ATA drives, not SATA drives. The enclosure will last a lot longer than the drives inside. Do you really want to buy something that is on the trailing edge of technology?

This drive comes out to be about $0.26 per gigabyte. That's a good price, really. But you could also get this drive for $0.23/gigabyte. I usually look to pay about a quarter per gigabyte right now. Anyone have any other price metrics that they like?

And as for the rest of your enclosures, the only thing I really look for is an Oxford911 (912 for Firewire 800 models) controller chip. You have to dig a little to find this, but it's worth buying.
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brodown  (op)
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Dec 27, 2007, 08:09 PM
 
what is this oxford911 chip do? i understand what you mean with the back up drive...i was also thinking that with only 1 firewire output on my MBP i couldnt capture footage onto the external is that right or is there something im missing? I really wouldnt want to risk losing footage because I film skateboarding and going and refilming a trick is very hard alot of times because it is never a controlled environment, also the clips tend to be 5-20 seconds long and you just have a ton of them that make up a 30-45min video. so even though i will capture close to 50-75 dv tapes you only capture about 15mins off each one if that. Thank you very much for you help I think i will go with the enclosure you suggested and 2 of the WD 500gb drives you just gave the link of and then do a Raid 1, which i think is the bet idea for me, i dont drink hahahaha. I still do not know what to do about my capturing problem though. Any more help would be great you have helped so much already, im more of a videographer than an editor anyway, i only edit when i have to hahahaha.
     
jogi
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Dec 28, 2007, 04:18 AM
 
Since you are on Firewire 400, any external hard drive will do the job properly, as they all max out the transfer limit of 400mbit/sec.

So buy anything with 750 gb and above and Firewire 400 connection.

Hope it helps...
     
jogi
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Dec 28, 2007, 04:22 AM
 
Also, to solve the one firewire port problem (it will cause you problems if you rip directly to the hard drive) check this out:

Belkin : FireWire 800 ExpressCard™

I beleive your macbook pro has an expresscard slot, right? If yes, you can use it to add 2 firewire 800 ports, or even better eSata...
     
SierraDragon
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Dec 28, 2007, 11:28 AM
 
• First and most important step is to maximize RAM. I buy all my RAM and hard drives from OWC: Find the latest Performance Upgrades, Firewire and USB Hard Drives, SATA, Memory, Laptop Battery, and more at OWC, an excellent vendor; recommended.

• Second is to fully digest the Wiki White Paper on RAID. RAID - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

• FW400 is less than ideal. Add a FW800 card or better still an eSata card IF you find an appropriate eSATA external setup. Avoid USB2 which performs very poorly on Macs.

Your primary need for video is throughput speed which means RAID 0 and FW800 or faster. For simplicity you may consider an external RAID 0 drive array as one drive that is 2x as fast and 2x as likely to fail (the cost of speed). I recommend:

• One RAID 0 array for primary video work.

• One non-RAID drive of similar capacity for on site backup.

• Ideally (but optional) one non-RAID drive of similar capacity for off site backup.

Sizewise, larger is better. IMO you should be looking in the 500 GB to 1 TB size range (calculate cost per GB at various sizes) from quality vendors only. Some folks go the cheapest-I-can-find route, assuming somehow that - unlike everything else on the planet - all hard drives are identical quality. IMO cheapest is sound only IF one maintains perfect redundant backup at all times.

RAID 1 was mentioned. RAID 1 is appropriate for activities that require real-time bombproof backup (e.g. credit card transactions) at a cost of half the speed and twice the money cost. Not appropriate backup for us image-handling folks. Better to simply automate hourly backup to a simple non-RAID hard drive. Backup software comes with many drives, including those from OWC.

OWC has good presales tech support, but you should have a thorough understanding of what you intend, what RAID arrays are, etc. prior to calling them. They can hook you up with everything needed and I have always found them to be competent and helpful.

-Allen Wicks
( Last edited by SierraDragon; Dec 28, 2007 at 11:50 AM. )
     
markponcelet
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Dec 28, 2007, 11:43 AM
 
Originally Posted by SierraDragon View Post
Your primary need for video is throughput speed which means RAID 0 and FW800 or faster. For simplicity you may consider an external RAID 0 drive array as one drive that is 2x as fast and 2x as likely to fail (the cost of speed).
Aren't the speed gains of RAID 0 greater than the throughput of FW800? I considered doing this myself once, but I am pretty sure that I found that the drive would be faster than the FW800 connection itself.

But otherwise, I agree with everything you've said here.
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brodown  (op)
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Dec 28, 2007, 01:44 PM
 
WOW...thanks for all the info guys!!! so i can add the FW800 this Belkin : FireWire 800 ExpressCard™ i beleive i have an expansion but i can used it as a firwire port? sounds amazing will it work just as good as a FW800 port? that looks ideal and for $100 not bad so I'm thinking that this set up will be the best for me let me know what you think of this set up..

1 of these:
OWC Mercury Elite-AL 800+USB2 Pro RAID Rea... (MEFW924AL2K) at OWC

2 of these:
500GB Western Digital Caviar SE16 SATA-II 1... (WD5000AAKS) at OWC

1 of these:
Belkin : FireWire 800 ExpressCard™

Anything else you would recommend...i can also add 1gb RAM for a total of 3gb
     
brodown  (op)
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Dec 28, 2007, 02:02 PM
 
that belkin expresscard had some bad reviews saying it crashed some macbooks and that it wouldnt work with external hard drives, does anyone currently use that that could give me a review? I need to capture footage through it through my macbook pro to the external enclosure, would that not work
     
zaghahzag
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Dec 28, 2007, 03:25 PM
 
Get the expresscard SATA thing and a big external RAID setup. As others have pointed out, raid 0 is the fastest 2 drive setup, but RAID 1 will have faster reads than one drive while writes will be the same or slower than a single drive setup.

Anyone who says that RAID 1 doesn't increase performance is just plain wrong. It increases read performance by up to 2x and write performance is about the same (or a little slower). If you are using the drives mostly for reading, then RAID1 is just as fast as RAID0, and you get redundancy to boot. (at the cost of drive space. Raid zero capacity = 2* drive size, raid 1 =1*drive size.

There's no point in doing a RAID + firewire 400 or 800 if you want maximum throughput. Firewire 800 isn't fast enough for a fast two drive RAID. Get a SATA card. There are external enclosures that have SATA and other connection methods like USB2 + firewire.

The other advantage of SATA is that you can theoretically do a 3 or 4 drive external RAID.

Also keep in mind that if you want a fast RAID, you need to get fast drives. Don't buy a drive without checking to make sure it's the latest and greatest.
     
brodown  (op)
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Dec 28, 2007, 03:48 PM
 
So i should get the belkin expresscard fw800? or i shouldnt? I personally wanted to do a RAID 1 with 2 500gb so i would have 500gb total space and then have the other 500gb mirror the other one so if that one went then i could have it backed up...then have another small backup for very important stuff on a small g-drive. Also i have the 2.16ghz MBP i got it a little over a year ago...august/september of 2006...how much RAM do i max out at?
     
zaghahzag
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Dec 28, 2007, 04:31 PM
 
something like this:
1.0TB OWC Mercury Elite-AL Pro eSATA Dual... (MESR1.0TB32) at OWC

and an ESATA express card. and somehting like this:
APIOTEK EXTREME Express34 SATA I/II 2-Port... (APIEC0003D) at OWC

I'm not exactly recommending either of those products, but its a good place to start.

Does anyone know if that external enclosure does a hardware RAID in the enclosure? I have a WD external 2x500 gig drives in raid 1 w/ firewire 800 and it's good for backups but not particularly fast.
     
brodown  (op)
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Dec 28, 2007, 04:45 PM
 
that enclosure doesnt have any outputs on it, or does it? i dont see how that would work. I need to capture standard def DV, onto this drive and render FCP, AE files onto it...500gb should be plenty so i want a 2x500gb RAID 1. I would prefer FW800 but my MBP is FW400, but there is that belkin that im still up in the air about so what i need to know is what the best combination would be for me. Enclosure, 2 500gb drives, and Expresscard for FW800 or for the Enclosure itself.
     
cbrfanatic
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Dec 28, 2007, 05:27 PM
 
Hi everyone, i just wanted to chime in on a few things.

1st. You have to stop saying that FW400 is not better then USB. Yes USB is 480Mbits/s and FW400 is only 400Mbits/s, but what you have to realize is that USB sends its information in packet and FW sends its information via data stream. Meaning if you try to play HD or sometimes SD from an external via USB, it will pop and stutter while the same external will play HD via FW just fine.

2nd. I personaly use a Western Digital My Book Professional Edition Triple Interface. Since i still work on a powerbook 1.67ghz, i am lucky enough to be able to use FW800. I run FCS2 just fine, it only slows down when using HD in motion or shake, and i render each clip on input instead of trying to render the whole thing. Export over night, etc. Does what it needs to until i have enough $$$ for a maxed out Mac Pro.
     
silver
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Dec 28, 2007, 06:11 PM
 
@brodown so what your saying is that you'll use 2 Hard drives to do a raid 1 then mirror that to the same drive?

If so your not quite getting the right info, for example you said you want a raid 1 to capture to(which just mirrors your data from 1 drive to the other), then you plan to mirror that to another Hard drive in the array. You cant, In essence what you wrote would mean that you intended to remirror the data back to the raid array then store a copy on a external Hard drive.

When you raid a bunch of drives(2 minimum) they appear as 1 Hard drive.

So how many drives do you plan to start with? If it's 2x500GB then your stuck with either raid 0(which should give you 1TB storage plus speed at the cost of a possible lost to data. Or raid 1 that gives you 500GB total and not very good Hard drive performance but good for longer term storage.

You keep mentioning raid 1, but for video you'd want the most speed so raid 0 would be more of a better choice unless you plan to keep your projects on there for a long time. But if that's the case then you'll run out of space in no time in a 2x500 raid array.

Really you shouldn't waste your time on raid if all you plan to use is FW400, if your serious then look into a eSATA card for the 3/4 express card slot then get yourself an eSATA enclosure for it, way faster than FW800, FW400 and lame USB2. Then just plug the FW400 cable that came with your DV cam to your MBP, after that use FCP or what have you to capture and store to the external raid array. Very simple and fast.

Anyway do a read on the wiki on raid posted earlier by SierraDragon, very good read.


Cheers
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brodown  (op)
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Dec 28, 2007, 06:34 PM
 
Originally Posted by silver View Post
@brodown so what your saying is that you'll use 2 Hard drives to do a raid 1 then mirror that to the same drive?

If so your not quite getting the right info, for example you said you want a raid 1 to capture to(which just mirrors your data from 1 drive to the other), then you plan to mirror that to another Hard drive in the array. You cant, In essence what you wrote would mean that you intended to remirror the data back to the raid array then store a copy on a external Hard drive.

When you raid a bunch of drives(2 minimum) they appear as 1 Hard drive.

So how many drives do you plan to start with? If it's 2x500GB then your stuck with either raid 0(which should give you 1TB storage plus speed at the cost of a possible lost to data. Or raid 1 that gives you 500GB total and not very good Hard drive performance but good for longer term storage.

You keep mentioning raid 1, but for video you'd want the most speed so raid 0 would be more of a better choice unless you plan to keep your projects on there for a long time. But if that's the case then you'll run out of space in no time in a 2x500 raid array.

Really you shouldn't waste your time on raid if all you plan to use is FW400, if your serious then look into a eSATA card for the 3/4 express card slot then get yourself an eSATA enclosure for it, way faster than FW800, FW400 and lame USB2. Then just plug the FW400 cable that came with your DV cam to your MBP, after that use FCP or what have you to capture and store to the external raid array. Very simple and fast.

Anyway do a read on the wiki on raid posted earlier by SierraDragon, very good read.


Cheers
Okay. that makes sense...well i did just want to have 2 500gb drives(1TB total) but do a Raid 1 which i guess would give me 500gb total but if one crashed i'd have it backed up. I guess i could back up everything on a g-drive. I do need speed and performance but i want reliability, what you said sounds good too. Could you post a link to a good eSata Card and an eSata enclosure with the drives. that will work then just back them up on a gdrive for storage. does that sound better?
     
brodown  (op)
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Dec 28, 2007, 06:55 PM
 
     
silver
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Dec 28, 2007, 07:55 PM
 
Yes that would do handedly. Do go with raid 0 then just back that up to a non raid drive.


Cheers
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brodown  (op)
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Dec 28, 2007, 08:22 PM
 
Awesome...is there a certain eSATA drive and express card you would recommend???
     
CharlesS
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Dec 28, 2007, 08:43 PM
 
For the eSATA drive, just put any internal SATA drive inside an eSATA enclosure. Extremely cheap enclosures for eSATA can be found on newegg.com. For maximum compatibility, you might want to get one that has USB 2.0 as well.

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SierraDragon
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Dec 28, 2007, 10:19 PM
 
Originally Posted by zaghahzag View Post
Anyone who says that RAID 1 doesn't increase performance is just plain wrong. It increases read performance...
I stand corrected; read performance indeed does improve on RAID 1 arrays. However that technicality does not make RAID 1 appropriate for video work. Typically RAID 1 is quite expensive, making simple backup to standard hard drives best for images folks like us.

Originally Posted by brodown View Post
...i can also add 1gb RAM for a total of 3gb
You only have 2 RAM DIMM slots so you will need to replace a 1 GB DIMM with a 2 GB DIMM.

IMO when building an external drive system it makes sense to optimize, hence RAID 0 and eSATA. However we should note that the MBP itself may end up limiting. A 2.16 GHz MBP is fairly far down the food chain of video editing performance. You probably should go to the FCP forum and see if folks there are editing using your same MBP (specify whether your MBP is Core Duo or Core2 Duo), and find out what they find most limiting.

-Allen Wicks
     
cbrfanatic
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Dec 28, 2007, 10:52 PM
 
Originally Posted by SierraDragon View Post
You probably should go to the FCP forum and see if folks there are editing using your same MBP (specify whether your MBP is Core Duo or Core2 Duo), and find out what they find most limiting.

-Allen Wicks
can you post a link to this? i've been looking for a decent FCP or even FCS2 forums like crazy, cant find any.
     
SierraDragon
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Dec 29, 2007, 07:45 PM
 
Apple - Support - Discussions - Final Cut Pro is one forum, and google "final cut pro forum" for more.

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baggy_pants
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Dec 30, 2007, 10:31 PM
 
Hi there,

I edit for a living and doing a lot of this is just overkill. 3 hours of DV at PAL or NTSC resolution is about 40GB in total data. I would be extremely surprised if you ended up with render files that add up to any more than that on top. The FW400 protocol is fine for these data rates, remember that DV is just 25Mbps, that's incredibly light on, so don't bother upgrading your ports etc. Just get 2 separate external FW400 enclosures with something like a WD 500 in each, import all of your footage to one and then copy it all to the other. Keep the second one safe as a backup if the original fails (this has happened to me). This gives you a lot of room for graphics, motion graphics files, audio renders and so on.

Also, backup ALL of your project files and necessary graphics etc DAILY. If you lose something, you will hate yourself for not having done this simple thing. The only thing worse than losing a days work is losing a week, 2 weeks or a month.

Also, be sure to plug in and turn on external firewire enclosures or cameras BEFORE you turn on your main system. Firewire can and does burn out ports, it's happened to me. It shouldn't, but it does. James Wiebe of Wiebetech wrote a white paper on the subject, it's a little out of date (2003) but you'll get the idea.

WiebeTech Micro Storage Solutions -White Papers

Also make sure you have a good quality firewire lead, they can cause problems.

Generally speaking, once you start, the biggest thing is to make sure you keep track of your files, manage all of your files well and you won't spend valuable time searching you hard drives for a file you just know you imported but can't seem to find.

Hope this helps. And trust me, FW400 is fine, I've edited film clips, concerts, short films, ads etc using portable FW400 drives. The only reason you'd want to get FW800 is for any future upgrades and/or if you transfer a lot of data.
     
brodown  (op)
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Dec 31, 2007, 12:14 AM
 
Originally Posted by baggy_pants View Post
Hi there,

I edit for a living and doing a lot of this is just overkill. 3 hours of DV at PAL or NTSC resolution is about 40GB in total data. I would be extremely surprised if you ended up with render files that add up to any more than that on top. The FW400 protocol is fine for these data rates, remember that DV is just 25Mbps, that's incredibly light on, so don't bother upgrading your ports etc. Just get 2 separate external FW400 enclosures with something like a WD 500 in each, import all of your footage to one and then copy it all to the other. Keep the second one safe as a backup if the original fails (this has happened to me). This gives you a lot of room for graphics, motion graphics files, audio renders and so on.

Also, backup ALL of your project files and necessary graphics etc DAILY. If you lose something, you will hate yourself for not having done this simple thing. The only thing worse than losing a days work is losing a week, 2 weeks or a month.

Also, be sure to plug in and turn on external firewire enclosures or cameras BEFORE you turn on your main system. Firewire can and does burn out ports, it's happened to me. It shouldn't, but it does. James Wiebe of Wiebetech wrote a white paper on the subject, it's a little out of date (2003) but you'll get the idea.

WiebeTech Micro Storage Solutions -White Papers

Also make sure you have a good quality firewire lead, they can cause problems.

Generally speaking, once you start, the biggest thing is to make sure you keep track of your files, manage all of your files well and you won't spend valuable time searching you hard drives for a file you just know you imported but can't seem to find.

Hope this helps. And trust me, FW400 is fine, I've edited film clips, concerts, short films, ads etc using portable FW400 drives. The only reason you'd want to get FW800 is for any future upgrades and/or if you transfer a lot of data.
Thanks alot. this sounds good and its less to buy and instal, can you please tell me a good enclosure you get...i would need 2 FW 400 ports and maybe some others something that is reliable quiet, fast and cool, i dont mind spending extra money for something good.thanks
     
brodown  (op)
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Dec 31, 2007, 12:14 AM
 
Originally Posted by baggy_pants View Post
Hi there,

I edit for a living and doing a lot of this is just overkill. 3 hours of DV at PAL or NTSC resolution is about 40GB in total data. I would be extremely surprised if you ended up with render files that add up to any more than that on top. The FW400 protocol is fine for these data rates, remember that DV is just 25Mbps, that's incredibly light on, so don't bother upgrading your ports etc. Just get 2 separate external FW400 enclosures with something like a WD 500 in each, import all of your footage to one and then copy it all to the other. Keep the second one safe as a backup if the original fails (this has happened to me). This gives you a lot of room for graphics, motion graphics files, audio renders and so on.

Also, backup ALL of your project files and necessary graphics etc DAILY. If you lose something, you will hate yourself for not having done this simple thing. The only thing worse than losing a days work is losing a week, 2 weeks or a month.

Also, be sure to plug in and turn on external firewire enclosures or cameras BEFORE you turn on your main system. Firewire can and does burn out ports, it's happened to me. It shouldn't, but it does. James Wiebe of Wiebetech wrote a white paper on the subject, it's a little out of date (2003) but you'll get the idea.

WiebeTech Micro Storage Solutions -White Papers

Also make sure you have a good quality firewire lead, they can cause problems.

Generally speaking, once you start, the biggest thing is to make sure you keep track of your files, manage all of your files well and you won't spend valuable time searching you hard drives for a file you just know you imported but can't seem to find.

Hope this helps. And trust me, FW400 is fine, I've edited film clips, concerts, short films, ads etc using portable FW400 drives. The only reason you'd want to get FW800 is for any future upgrades and/or if you transfer a lot of data.
Thanks alot. this sounds good and its less to buy and instal, can you please tell me a good enclosure you get...i would need 2 FW 400 ports and maybe some others something that is reliable quiet, fast and cool, i dont mind spending extra money for something good.thanks
     
baggy_pants
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Dec 31, 2007, 11:21 PM
 
To be honest, I haven't had to buy portable storage for a few years now, but I hear good things about the WD My Book Studio (in Australia you can get a 500GB for around $280, which is cheap as chips, and they also look nice on the desktop). These come with USB (which is no good for video editing anyway), FW400, FW800 and eSATA. eSATA is preferable in almost every way because it's the standard at the moment, it's just rock solid and it's speed is really limited by your harddrive.

Also, you may experience issues when connecting your camera and the firewire drive at the same time. I'm not sure if you will, but it has happened in the past when the firewire port is sharing data in this way. Something to keep in mind, if you do have these issues and you do want to be able to preview your footage via your camera to an external monitor (not sure on your setup or your intentions here), then you at least have the option of buying an eSATA card and using that port, thereby freeing up the firewire port for your video camera.

Western Digital My Book™

Even though there is a new firewire standard coming out that's faster than eSATA (it's called S3200 and it's capable of 3.2gigabits/second as compared to FW800 at 800megabits/s and SATA at 3gigbits/s), it likely won't be taken up until late this year or the next. It may or may not become a replacement or alternative standard for eSATA and HDMI.

Currently, with eSATA you can buy a port multiplier card and attach a 5 drive array with just one lead. Meaning with a 4 port card, you can access the speed and redundancy available in a 20 drive array. So you could in theory have access to 20TB's of storage on your desktop, fast enough to edit uncompressed 10bit 60i HD video (237MB/s data rate and 834GB per hour of storage).

The first firewires we ever purchased were 180GB and they were $1000 each. The Seagates look good also, but I think nowadays you're fairly safe with whatever you buy.

There are lots of other alternatives like the Taurus RAID (though I hear they're noisy) or XP800-S but it's hard to go past the all-in-one options that manufacturers are supplying these days.

Anyway, I've rambled enough, if it were me I'd just buy a couple of the WD My Book Studio Edition 500GB's and you're very well covered. Hope this helps.
     
brodown  (op)
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Jan 1, 2008, 12:20 AM
 
thanks so much...so idealy 2 my book premiuns 500gb esata with an esata card that way i can leave my firewire port free for my camera...sound good to you?
     
baggy_pants
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Jan 1, 2008, 12:57 AM
 
You can hang off on the esata express card, I've used firewire drives with cameras and not had problems, I just know that the problem can exist. Test the workflow out and see if you need the card.

But if you do decide to get something like this

Sonnet - Tempo SATA Express/34: SATA Express34 Card for MacBook and PC Notebooks

for around $130US, it gives you the ability to hook up 2 port multiplier enclosures like this

Sonnet - Fusion D500P: 5-Bay Serial ATA Drive Enclosure with Port Multiplier

and get the speed and storage of up to 10 drives. Pretty nice, way overkill for your needs though, just letting you know the possibility for expansion is greater with a card like that.

Does your MacBook have a graphics card with DVI port? How do you plan on monitoring your footage? Just what's on screen in FCS2? You could buy a cheap dell 20" or 24" widescreen monitor and plug it into the DVI port to give you a lot more screen real estate to work with. The screen can become quite cluttered, very quickly. And FCS allows you to use one of the screens as a full sized preview screen. It is much better to see the picture bigger as it can change your edit decisions. This also saves on having the camera on all of the time.

Just another option for you.
     
baggy_pants
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Jan 1, 2008, 01:23 AM
 
I should have added also, if there is a firewire conflict and you're getting dropped frames or the like when you're importing your footage, just import the footage directly to your system hard drive, then simply copy it over to the firewire drive when you're done (making sure you delete the footage off your system drive). Just if you want to save on buying accessories that you may not need. And if you use an external LCD like a Dell, you don't need to have the camera on so you won't have problems with your firewire port.

There's no loss of quality or such, this is all DV, all digital, it will be exactly as the image was recorded to the tape in the first place. You're just shuffling 1's and 0's around. But DV is heavily compressed, that's the tradeoff for data rate and file size, something needs to be tossed out on encoding in order to make it as compact as it is. You probably won't notice, except on multiple renders and effects.
     
baggy_pants
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Jan 1, 2008, 01:57 AM
 
Just thought of 2 more things to help you out. First is to make absolutely sure that you have everything that is connected to your computer (power for computer, external drives, monitors, camera etc...) is plugged into a proper power filter. A UPS is more ideal but at least with a good surge protector any power surges and spikes won't harm your system or it's components and will ultimately improve the lifespan of your equipment.

Something like this should do it:

Belkin : 12 OUTLET HOME/OFFICE SURGE PROTECTOR WITH TELEPHONE AND COAXIAL PROTECTION

And how will you monitor sound? For best results you'll want a good flat response, active near field reference monitor speaker set, something like a Fostex PM0.5 or a Berhinger TRUTH series. Maybe someone else could offer a tip on that one, if you think you'll need it.

LOUDSPEAKERS / AMPLIFIERS - STUDIO MONITORS - TRUTH B2030A : High-Resolution, Active 2-Way Reference Studio Monitor

But this may be overkill, I'm not sure what your project is or what you hope to achieve from it.
     
brodown  (op)
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Jan 1, 2008, 11:16 AM
 
Originally Posted by baggy_pants View Post
But DV is heavily compressed, that's the tradeoff for data rate and file size, something needs to be tossed out on encoding in order to make it as compact as it is. You probably won't notice, except on multiple renders and effects.


this scares me because i really do can not have the footage looking bad or compressed...are you saying that DV is always compressed because if so than i don notice, this will be my 4th video but i shoot them and then relearn how to edit like every other year because editing isnt really fun for me. i usually upgrade computers between these projects. my first 2 i PC's then my last one i used a powermac g5, then i got married and assumed i wouldnt be doing as much editing so i sold the G5 and got this macbook pro which i love, its actually faster and quieter than my powermac g5 was. but now i am doing this project and i want to get the right stuff.

here is a list of things i'm planning to get:

2 of these: My Book Studio Edition 500 GB Hard Drives ( WDH1Q5000 )

1 of these: Sonnet - Tempo SATA Express/34: SATA Express34 Card for MacBook and PC Notebooks

I really like the idea of using the esata for rendering and saving files...but i'm still going to capture my footage through the FW400 port since it will be left free, because that process has worked fine for me for years. I will have my macbook hooked up to a small LCD tv i have a 20" for it, and i have some decent speakers...but i work in the Pawn business so if something better comes through i'll grab it. Thanks so much for your help these seems like a much easier way to do it. Oh yeah right now i have 2gb RAM, I'm going to get a 2gb stick so i can upgrade to 3gb RAM. Does all of this sounds good???
     
brodown  (op)
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Jan 1, 2008, 11:17 AM
 
PS: i really need to get this stuff ASAP, so let me know if this is good to get
     
jogi
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Jan 1, 2008, 11:48 AM
 
Originally Posted by brodown View Post
[/B]

this scares me because i really do can not have the footage looking bad or compressed...are you saying that DV is always compressed because if so than i don notice, this will be my 4th video but i shoot them and then relearn how to edit like every other year because editing isnt really fun for me. i usually upgrade computers between these projects. my first 2 i PC's then my last one i used a powermac g5, then i got married and assumed i wouldnt be doing as much editing so i sold the G5 and got this macbook pro which i love, its actually faster and quieter than my powermac g5 was. but now i am doing this project and i want to get the right stuff.
?
DV is compressed with a DCT lossy algorithm, but the video bit rate is 25megabits/sec which is quite a lot for video, so no significant artifacts occur.

DV - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
     
baggy_pants
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Jan 1, 2008, 12:57 PM
 
For your purposes, that gear sounds pretty optimal.

Didn't mean to scare you with the lossy compression statement. I don't mean to contradict jogi but 25mb/s is at the very bottom end of video data rate, it is very low and artifacting does indeed occur particularly in contrast edges, dark areas and areas of high motion (similar losses as with mpeg2 or DVD). But the compression algorithm is very efficient, meaning it has comparable image quality to something like Betacam SP, which is an older broadcast standard, but it doesn't share the same encoding of colour as something like Betacam SP. And to put it simply, most people wouldn't notice anyway. I truly don't want to confuse or scare you into thinking it will all be inferior or awful looking. DV is fine, you'll be OK.

I've edited film clips, doco's and ads that were all shot on DV and they all turned out great. Hope this clears things up a little.
     
lysolman
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Jan 1, 2008, 11:18 PM
 
I don't know if the guy is confused or everybody else is, but he said his MBP doesn't have Firewire 800.

All Macbook Pro's have Firewire 800!

Does this mean he really only has a Macbook and is confused with the acronym, or did no one else catch this and tell him what's up.

Macbook Pro's have Firewire 800, all of them!!!!
     
Cold Warrior
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Jan 1, 2008, 11:33 PM
 
Originally Posted by lysolman View Post
I don't know if the guy is confused or everybody else is, but he said his MBP doesn't have Firewire 800.

All Macbook Pro's have Firewire 800!

Does this mean he really only has a Macbook and is confused with the acronym, or did no one else catch this and tell him what's up.

Macbook Pro's have Firewire 800, all of them!!!!
I looked it up on everymac.com, and it doesn't look like they came with FW800 until the core duo 2.16 17" model. Then after that, Apple introduced the core 2 duo MBP, at which point they all had FW800.
     
RiquiScott
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Jan 2, 2008, 01:57 AM
 
Originally Posted by Cold Warrior View Post
I looked it up on everymac.com, and it doesn't look like they came with FW800 until the core duo 2.16 17" model. Then after that, Apple introduced the core 2 duo MBP, at which point they all had FW800.
Absolutely correct - the original 15" MacBook Pro did not have FW800. That was the main reason I delayed getting one until the C2D version came out.
     
silver
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Jan 2, 2008, 06:17 AM
 
True, CD only had FW800 on the 17". C2D all came with FW800.

@lysolman before chastising most of use please get your facts straight first. Not all Macbook Pro's have FW800 especially the Core Duo versions.


Cheers
 MBP 17" 2.16ghz, ATI x1600 256, 100GBHD, 2GB ram, 23"AppleLCD
     
baggy_pants
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Jan 3, 2008, 10:28 AM
 
Can someone confirm for me that the FW400 & FW800 share the same bus or not? This can cause the same conflicts as far as I am aware. I believe it's a bus issue, not FW itself that can cause problems. And if a 400 and 800 are connected at the same time to a shared bus, doesn't the speed drop to the lower anyway? I'm certainly no MacGeek. Anyone? Bueller? Is a FW800 port limited to 400mb/s if the FW400 port is used at the same time? Would be nice to know for sure. Perhaps this has already been answered... sorry if so.
     
   
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