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    Default Video editing

    I have a number of video camera tapes that I would like to edit to make a few short movies. I tried doing this about 10 years ago using software called Pinnacle. I didn't have any training which made things difficult and the rendering was very slow and I just gave up. Now that I have more time on my hands I would like to try again.
    I would greatly appreciate any suggestions from anyone familiar with video editing as to what are the features I should look for in a computer and any video editing software that is user friendly.
    Thanks, Bob.



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    It's a bit of a 'how long is a piece of string' question, Bob.

    A lot will depend on exactly what you want to do with the video, whether you want just basic cuts/dissolves, or special effects, multi-channel audio mixing or surround sound output, encoding to DVD/Blu-ray or low-res youtube, etc.

    Pinnacle is capable of most of those things.

    I use Adobe Premiere Pro, but if you just want something very basic, something like Movie Maker should do.

    Computer?... again, it depends on how complex the editing projects you intend to work with, but the basics are a fast processor (or more than 1 processor) plenty of RAM, and separate source and target drives. A separate graphics card with plenty of RAM will also help as it doesn't rely on the main processor/s and RAM as much, so editing, rendering and encoding are performed much faster.

    Obviously, a lot will depend on your budget for equipment and software.

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    What platform are you on? Windows or Mac? If you're on a Mac, the imovie app is a great program and comes bundled with the OS. if on a PC, there are a variety of free tools but not all the best. Da Vinci Resolve is a colour grader but has some editing functionality and I think it's also free. Industry standard is Adobe Premiere Pro or Avid but they all cost a bit (or are on a monthly cloud fee).

    Basic features should include effects (disolves between edits). Some form of colour grading so you can ensure the camera tapes are all colour balanced correctly. You can also sharpen the image if the source had noise. Ability to do multitrack video and audio as well. That would be my starting point. You can then get fancy and add other effects but you're in the Final Cut Pro X or Premiere Pro world.

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    You beat me by moments MTV...

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    Thanks for a fast response MTV.
    I want to take the raw video from the camera tapes, edit out most of it and join up the clips I like to make movies of about 15 minutes duration (or less) that I can burn onto DVD that will play on any DVD machine. I would like to add music backing but also I would like to use some of the associated sound recorded with the original recorded video.
    I am also planning to buy a new lap top for the purpose. There are very few available with internal DVD burners but a few exist and some have SSD drives. My knowledge of graphics cards is limited (very limited). One lap top I looked at has a 256GB SSD as well as 1TB disc drive, 8GB of RAM and the graphics card has 4GB of memory. It is just over the $1000 mark. One spec I am unsure of is Cache. I think it said the Cache was 2MB. Is that important? I could go for a desk top. What would you do?

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    The 256GB SSD should only be used as a system drive, so you ideally need two other drives with plenty of spare capacity, as I mentioned, one as the source, where you would transfer all the raw footage and the other as the target drive, where the edited files are output to. I would recommend 1TB as an absolute minimum size. All HDD's these days have a decent cache, so it's not overly important.

    The idea is that the program simultaneously reads from one drive and writes to the other, which speeds up the process greatly, compared to both reading and writing to the same single drive.

    I would also recommend a minimum of 16GB RAM, especially if you are looking to multitrack. A lot depends on the editing program's minimum specifications.

    Again, the fastest processor you can afford.

    An external DVD burner is fine, but like external hard drives, use USB3 peripherals.

    You will also need a disc burning application, like NERO, etc.

    I've used both Mac and PC with Premiere Pro and find no difference, but unless you want to be tied to everything Apple, I'd go with PC.

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    The laptop you are looking at will do the job well. I have a that may be a little better than that Laptop, however if you only want to do this project & not be a professional video editor, that lap top is good to go; or better than you really need.

    I have used free programs , Windows MovieMaker, Nero & a couple of others & found them deficient in user experience, video quality, etc..
    I have used semi-professional programs, Adobe Premiere Pro & Cyberlink PowerDirector. Both will do what you need.
    Both are excellent, the only thing I have found is the user interface for the Cyberlink product is way easier for the non-professional.
    ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
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    My knowledge of Video Editing is on a par with my knowledge of brain surgery.

    But the little bit of tinkering I do is with a program called Avidemux.

    I run it with no problems on an old HP DV6, i7/1.6gHz, Win7 64 bit, 750gB Hdd, 6gB Ram

    I've no idea if it will suit your needs, but it's free.....so......

    Description

    Avidemux is a free, open source cross-platform video editor for Microsoft® Windows®, Linux®, Mac OS X®, and BSD. It is written in C++, and you can use it for various tasks such as encoding (convert videos from one format to another), cutting (cut individual portions from a recording) or filtering (resize, deinterlacing, add subtitles, color correction, etc.)

    . Avidemux offers built-in support for many popular codecs and files: AVI, MP4, ASF, DVD, MPEG, MKV. It is one of the best free video editors whenever you need to automate video processing or editing process. The software is released under the GNU GPL license and has been released (binaries) in both 32-bit and 64-bit versions.



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    Thank you Tiny and Thela Dan for the computer info especially. I will have a give Avidemux a go.
    I am now more inclined towards a desk top / tower because it would accommodate more devices in the one box (additional HHD, DVD Burner etc). I like the sound of your machine Tiny with two HDDs. How important is the graphics card for video editing and what should one look for in specs?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ficus View Post
    Thank you Tiny and Thela Dan for the computer info especially. I will have a give Avidemux a go.
    I am now more inclined towards a desk top / tower because it would accommodate more devices in the one box (additional HHD, DVD Burner etc). I like the sound of your machine Tiny with two HDDs. How important is the graphics card for video editing and what should one look for in specs?
    yes the 2 drives are good, I also run a third drive in a hot swap port on the tower front for backups. The tower (case), mother board & power supply are capable of running 6 HDDs. great expansion potential for HD video storage.

    While the graphics card I have is capable of some fairly high level gaming processing, it is not by any means high end by todays standards, it's more middle of the road & some of the laptops now have equally capable graphics capabilities.
    The beauty of it is that it can edit HD video in real time & process it faster than real time for producing the end product. It acts like a booster for the CPU & also has 2Gb of it's own RAM for it's exclusive use.
    The laptop I have has a similar processor CPU Intel i7 (2.59 Ghz), 4Gb Ram & 1TB HDD, inbuilt Intel HD Graphics, both PC & laptop are Running Win10 64bit, but it does not process video at quite the same level as the big PC. It is acceptable though for most usage, but I prefer for big projects, to get on the PC with large screen.
    As for specs of a Graphics card if you are buying or building a PC, get what you can afford to spend without going overboard.
    EVGA & Nvidia have websites that will guide you to what specs you need for your application. The main thing is you want one that runs quiet, fan noise is really irritating, that's why I went with all components that are as quiet as possible.

    previous to the PC I built, I had a less capable PC that needed to make SD shadow files to work with & it was so slow & noisy, which became frustrating at times.

    6 years ago the BluRay burner was a great tool, however with the technology heading full speed into affordable digital media storage & wireless network transmission to the TV, it doesn't get used much now, mainly just to archive some of our best home videos, but even then I still keep digital storage & back ups of everything.

    Hope that helps. Do some research & come back with what you intend to buy & I will happily give you my opinion, as will others here I expect.
    Last edited by Tiny; 29-06-19 at 03:14 PM.
    Cheers, Tiny
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    i just fixed my mates video editing pc, (still fixing)
    but a newish quad core cpu, 16gb ram, a ssd for boot & normal sata for storage should do it.
    modern onboard graphics are pretty good except for gaming

    his has a slight jerkiness As its only dual core & 8gb ram, mine eats it.
    why do we need the NBN ? because the copper network is constipated & needs fibre

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    +1 for AVIdemux which I use all the time because it is so fast and easy, almost zero learn curve, runs on all platforms.
    It can work and convert with a lot of different formats and with the filters you can resample/resize, crop, rotate and many other things that I find lacking even on payware that usually hogs your computer.
    I hate the Adobe stuff but I know it is for professionals and what you can do with Aftereffects finds no match, just I have a life and can't find the time to learn how to use it properly.

    What Avidemux lacks is a proper timeline with transitions, you can only make clips that fade in and out if you need that. IMO transitions are corny and out dated but that might be just me.
    The idea is to cut out all clips you want to keep from the raw footage, which you save individually then open a new instance of AVIdemux and drag and drop them in the sequence you want them and save the complete movie. Unless you are using filters or need to re-encode (which these days is usually not necessary), this all goes without any rendering at all, almost instantly.
    Most of the time I am done in 5 minutes but it is not a cinematic masterpiece.

    If I want something fancy I just ask my older son who knows how to use After effects but that can take several weeks

    Edit: If you need to reverse your video clips, you need to download the older version 2.5x. The reverse filter is stupidly missing on later versions.
    Unfortunately, like it has become common practice these days, updates often mean you can't do everything you used to be able do.
    Last edited by Uncle Fester; 29-06-19 at 08:31 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ficus View Post
    Thank you Tiny and Thela Dan for the computer info especially. I will have a give Avidemux a go.
    I am now more inclined towards a desk top / tower because it would accommodate more devices in the one box (additional HHD, DVD Burner etc). I like the sound of your machine Tiny with two HDDs. How important is the graphics card for video editing and what should one look for in specs?
    A little off topic, but closely related.....

    If you do decide to go for a desk top/tower, allow me to put in a good (no, great) word for a monitor I just bought.

    Been using a Philips 23" flat external monitor on my Toshiba laptop for some time now, but lately having been getting a bit "squinty" working with it....decided it was time for something bigger.

    Went to Officeworks with a view to buying a bog-standard 27", but fell in instant love when I saw this beast:




    Philips 32" curved monitor:

    Never had a curved monitor before, and now that I have, there'll be no turning back.

    It's like being at the theatre.......looking at the flat monitor now is like listening to a mono cassette tape after listening to stereo surround sound.

    Surfing the 'net has become a whole different experience.

    If you do go for a desktop, and need to choose a monitor to go with it, I reckon this one would be brilliant for video editing.

    Compared to many other monitors of its size that I considered, it also has the advantage of a very small desk footprint.

    Something which is becoming a major consideration as my available workspace real estate becomes increasingly crowded.

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    You are a really helpful bunch of people. Very interesting suggestions. Speaking of Video monitors, I have been told it is handy to have two monitors for editing purposes. Any thoughts on that? BTW I think I am now convinced I need to buy/build a Tower case PC for my editing. I take your point regarding power supply capacity Tiny. Hadn't really though about that before. Thanks again everyone. Bob.

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    I have never used 2 monitors for anything, so I don't know if I'm missing anything.
    1 good HD monitor is all you should need. between 22 inch & 27 inch is all you need, the older you are the bigger the better.
    I am still really pleased with the picture quality of my 23.6 inch AOC HD monitor.

    If you want to future proof, maybe go for something capable of 4K. That will be the only thing I need to update in the future if I get a 4K camera.
    Cheers, Tiny
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    Go for two monitors if you can. There have been some who have problems with different monitors, but I use two monitors on all of my machines where I can, and it is great, You can push a job to one screen whilst say it is rendering, and keep an eye on it whilst you are doing something else on the other screen. Ideally, identical monitors is the best (hence my initial comment) but I am using different monitors at different resolutions with no issues. I started with W7, then 10 and now Linux with no issues at all. Get 2 monitors and you'll never want to return to a single one again.
    I'm out of my mind, but feel free to leave a message...

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    +1 for two monitors.
    It is always better to see the result of your editing on a separate screen without blocking the actual editing and filter windows. This is not so on AVIdemux but with more sophisticated software
    where you see the results live while you adjust things, like dealing with alpha channels and Boris plugins and all the stuff to make things amazing.

    I have an audio workstation and can' t live without two screens.
    If you really want to get serious about this you can't go past Aftereffects, there may be ways to get it cheaper, earlier versions or student versions.
    Check out youtube tutorials what you can do with it and see if that inspires you.
    Last edited by Uncle Fester; 01-07-19 at 11:28 AM.
    This era of thoughtless consumption must end so we can encourage a world of creative geniuses rather than consumer idiots.


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    + 1 for two monitors, however, you do require a graphics card capable of running them.

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    OK thanks people. Got all that. I have an old version of Pinnacle and found a book about that software in the library that is 25mm thick. I'll have to plough thru that.

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