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Laptop for video editing





eday2010
I am looking to get a laptop this summer because I lack the room to have a proper desktop computer. So until we move, I am holding off on building my own desktop PC. But when I get a laptop, I need it to do everything I would use a desktop for. Mainly it needs to be able to run something like Adobe Premiere and it needs to be able handling and playing 1080p60 (60 frames per second) video that my Panasonic camcorder records. It doesn't need to be top-of-the-line lightning fast, but it needs to be capable without being frustrating.

So what should I be looking for? I have seen a few laptops for under $1400 with Intel Core i7 CPUs and 6GB of RAM. I have read that anything under an i5 won't be good enough, so I have to assume an i7 is the best bet. But what "model" of the i7? How much RAM at minimum? Screen size? Video card? Anything else?
Ankhanu
eday2010 wrote:
I have read that anything under an i5 won't be good enough, so I have to assume an i7 is the best bet. But what "model" of the i7? How much RAM at minimum? Screen size? Video card? Anything else?


I don't have a whole lot to offer, in the way of recommendation, but, an i5, i3... even a single core, will do the job. An i7 will certainly do it faster, but you can do the work with slower hardware.

If you're doing video, you're going to want plenty of screen realestate, so I wouldn't go less than 15", 17" would be better, though much less portable. You'll want a decent video card, but, it you're not working with 3D games and the like, you really don't need a tonne of power; getting something with dedicated video RAM is best, otherwise your video will be using system RAM, which is slower and eats up resources that could be used elsewhere.
A quality screen is going to be important too; it'll be tough and expensive, but you'll want to find something as close to 1,920x1,080px as possible if you want to run 1080p at its native resolution. Chances are you'll have to settle for less on a laptop. My 15" MacBook Pro, for example, runs at 1680x1050, and has a pretty high end display.

Video editing eats up a LOT of system RAM, so you'll want as much as you can afford. I'd probably say 4Gb min, more if you can get it.

You might be interested in having HDMI out on the system so you can port out to an HDTV without any difficulty to test your videos.


Just remember, more CPU cores, more powerful video capability, bigger screen... these all translate to lower battery performance. You'll want to consider this if you're going to be on the go without an outlet a lot.
william
If $1400 is your budget, you have a lot of very good options out there. For video editing, honestly, a strong CPU and a large amount of RAM should be your top priorities. While it's true an i3 can handle video editing, getting a powerful i7 will save you a lot of time. And then, for $1400, you can easily purchase an 2nd generation i7, so you may as well.

For the RAM, really the more the better. Aim for at least 4 GB, but because RAM is cheap you can easily get 8 GB, or perhaps 16 GB if you have spare change. Screen size is personal preference. Personally I'd go with something 15"-17" with a 1920x1080 resolution (or 1920x1200 if you're lucky enough to find a 16:10 notebook) just because it gives you a lot of real estate to work with and is nicer to use than a 14" or smaller. Video cards in the past weren't necessary for video editing machines (only really for gaming, 3D modeling, and graphics design). However, that isn't the case anymore. Adobe Premiere supports CUDA, which takes advantage of GPU acceleration. The results are actually amazing, because CUDA speeds things up significantly. If at all possible, get yourself a powerful nVidia card (ATI doesn't support CUDA) because while you don't need it, you'll be missing out on a lot.

If $1400 is your budget and you can specify how much battery life you're interested in, I can make a few recommendations.
eday2010
Battery life doesn't matter to me because it will always be plugged in when I use it.

There are a few laptops I have seen seem like they would be capable. However, since making the opening post, I have decided to go back to building my own desktop. Even though I would prefer to free up some space in my house, for the price of a laptop I can build an excellent desktop with more RAM than I could ever get in a laptop.
jwellsy
I have a $600 laptop that runs Windows MovieMaker, Adobe Premier and Sony Vegas just fine. I shoot and edit lots of training videos at work with just a little $125 digital camera and my laptop. I render them in wmv format and store them on the company server so any of the windows machines can play the files easily with media player..
dapatel
Hi,
Video editing requires lots of processing power and memory. So get the fastest [Intel] cpu that we can afford . we need at least 4GB of memory (with 64-bit Operating System)....
Josso
Eh? Get a desktop you'll get twice as much for your money especially if you buy the parts individually and build it yourself.
Aredon
Josso wrote:
Eh? Get a desktop you'll get twice as much for your money especially if you buy the parts individually and build it yourself.

This ^^^
Build a desktop for 1/3 of the price, get a cheap laptop or tablet and remote into your desktop to video edit wherever you are using the desktop's power.
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