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  1. #1
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    Jan 2006
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    Building Encoding & Editing workstation..How much is enough?

    I need to build/buy a PC workstation to capture analog composite video/audio in for a small public access tv studio. How much computer is enough and how much is overkill. I am on a budget.

    We recently went to MPEG-2 playout after years playing from S-VHS.

    We'll send video and audio to the workstation from our DA's.
    After encoding, I want to use MPEG trim editor to trim off unwanted pre-roll and post-roll. Then copy the finished file to MPEG-2 server via gigabit LAN and also burn DVD for producer to leave with. I have been told that I want to use, at a minimum, hardware that is as good or better than this: AMD (not P4) 3.0 gHz or better, PCI-Exp graphics card with at least 128 mb ram, at least 1GB RAM, Gigabit ethernet, a 10K rpm Raptor 120GB SATA hard drive, DVD-R/+R/RW drive and Nero software, a Hapaggue WinTV-250 PVR for capture, a quality power supply of 350+ Watts, extra cooling fan or two .
    Time after the production is important. I can't have the producer sitting and waiting for hours for rendering or DVD authoring. Most of these studio shows are 30 min to 60 minutes.
    That is the core hardware that I think that we need. Do I need more? What type or brand of compnents are good enough without being way more than what is necessary for the job?
    I'd be thankful for suggestions or feedback.

  2. #2
    Administrator Dave's Avatar
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    Sep 2004
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    Re: Building Encoding & Editing workstation..How much is enough?

    IMO the specs you quoted will be fine. I tend to tell people not to get too concerned with hardware specs as long as you have a reasonably current computer. Not everyone agrees with me but I don't thing it's necessary to own a supercomputer to edit video. Nice, but not necessary.

    Of course the better your hardware, the faster your rendering and other tasks will be. If rendering time is a big concern then you might have to think bigger.

    It could also be worth considering a separate rendering computer. If you can send edited files to another computer to render while you continue working on your main computer, this can help productivity quite a lot. The rendering computer may not need to be particularly high-spec to achieve good productivity. However this only works in certain situations and may not work very well in your situation.
    Dave Owen
    MediaCollege.com

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