Cinema Perfecto Magazine - Issue 1

10/10's - Ten Lists of Ten Tips for Digital Filmakers & Professional Videographers

Ten Things to Look For in a Professional Video
or Audio Editing Workstation

By Edward Boettcher

We are at a revolutionary point in technology for the benefit of creative professionals. Workstation processing power has gone up and price has come down. Thank you Moore's Law!

When Pro Tools débuted in 1991 (at the bargain price of $6,000/sarcasm off) professional audio editing went digital and the change was profound. At approximately the same time, Avid came out with the Avid/1 video editing platform, Adobe arrived with Premiere Pro, Apple released iMovie and acquired Final Cut Pro and Sony released Vegas. Countless albums, films, wedding videos, etc. have been edited digitally. The power of today's computers have now brought that power to the masses. Whether you prefer an Apple or PC platform, there are constants to look for when making the investment in a workstation to help you realize your creative dreams.

1. CPU power. Raw brute force is preferred. Two related metrics-processor speed and cores-are critical. At a minimum for basic editing of DV, SD or 720p video content or 32 tracks of audio with 2-4 plug-ins, you should be okay with an optimized 3 core 2.4 GHz processor. The higher definition your video files or the more plug-ins you run in your audio editor, the more cores and speed you will need. At the top end you may also need two processors. Here is an excellent video on system balance, and while directed mainly at PC users, most of the same rules apply for Mac users.


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