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Thoughts about Laptop VS Desktop for video editing
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Eugen157
Senior Contributor Private Message Location: Palm Springs area, So.CA Joined: Dec 10, 2012 13:57 Messages: 660 Offline
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Fairly often the question arises as to what PC to buy for video editing.

That is especially important when editing 4K inluding the around the corner HEVC UHD BR format.

My personal experience favours the tower desktop design, making it easier to update and customize.



My computer, specs below, was bought in January of 2010.

By replacing the video card with a GTX960 and the C drive with a SSD, it was possible to increase the performance with PD14 to near the state of the art as far as video editing is concerned.

This resulted in vastly faster 4K rendering, in the case of HEVC from days to minutes. 60 min vs 2 days! All for under $300.

And the HD display was updated with a UHD 24" Viewsonic HDMI 2.0 monitor.

With a laptop that would not have been possible.

Not to mention that there are few if any laptops that can challenge the performance of a desktop for video editing. And most likely none that can render the new UHD HEVC format at all, or within a reasonable time. The design bottleneck is much higher GPU power consumption and the resulting heat and lower battery life.



Any thoughts ???



Eugene

This message was edited 5 times. Last update was at Oct 24. 2015 14:45

73s, WA6JZN ex DL9GC
CYBERLINK PLEASE ADD UHD BLU RAY BURNING SOFTWARE
PD14,
Win10,64bit.CPU i7 6700,16GB ,C= 480 GB SSD ,GPU GTX1060 6GB 1 fan. Plus 3 int, 4 ext HDD's for video etc.LG WH16NS40 reads UHD.
4K 24" ViewSonic monitor.Camera Sony FDR-A
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PepsiMan
Senior Contributor Private Message Location: Clarksville, TN Joined: Dec 29, 2010 01:20 Messages: 1053 Offline
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hello, Eugene.

wait a sec... who got the brand spanking new ASUS laptop with GTX 965M...

GGRussell!

how's your ASUS doing with PD14???



even SoNic67 suggested to get the desktop; however,

need a laptop with plenty of power for editing 4K videos.

'mine will be ASUS ROG G751JL or MSI GS70 Stealth-608 with GTX 965M...'

my reasoning is i'll be checking off my bucket list soon so need a laptop to go with me

a simple cigarette lighter DC/AC converter will charge the laptop as while driving

point A to B. edit and post on the YouTube on the fly!



when i drove on the Loneliest Road in America, US Route 50 Fallon to Ely, NV with my Note 3,

I had a total of 256GBs of 4K videos. without my Dell XPS L702X, i couldn't have taped that long

on the journey.


I prefer a laptop for convinience and power saving &

use laptop for editing and desktop for rendering...

PepsiMan



p.s.

PD 12Ultimate & HEVC to AVC converter is installed on my laptop Dell XPS L702X &

PD 14Ultimate upgrade from PD12 Ultimate Suite is installed on my desktop.

This message was edited 7 times. Last update was at Oct 28. 2015 01:21

'no bridge too far'

Yashica Electro 8 LD-6 Super 8mm
Asrock TaiChi X470, AMD R7 2700X, W7P 64, MSI GTX1060 6GB, Corsair 16GB/RAM
Dell XPS L702X i7-2860QM, W7P / W10P 64, Intel HD3000/nVidia GT 550M 1GB, Micron 16GB/RAM
Samsung Galaxy Note3/NX1
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Julien Pierre [Avatar]
Contributor Private Message Joined: Apr 14, 2011 01:34 Messages: 475 Offline
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Desktop all the way because of expandability. I would never even consider a laptop for video editing. MSI X99A Raider
Intel i7-5820k @ 4.4 GHz
32GB DDR4 RAM
Gigabyte nVidia GTX 960 4GB
480 GB Patriot Ignite SSD (boot)
2 x 480 GB Sandisk Ultra II SSD (striped)
6 x 1 TB Samsung 860 SSD (striped)

2 x LG 32UD59-B 32" 4K
Asus PB238 23" HD (portrait)
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Anthony [Avatar]
Newbie Private Message Joined: Oct 25, 2015 01:27 Messages: 1 Offline
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Hello All,
I use Power Director primarily on my PC fore many obvious reason, storage space, speed and 3 monitor set up, but I did just recently installed it on my laptop and it is nice to be able to do some editing anywhere I can take my laptop, as for storage space I can upload or download projects from the cloud
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TonyL [Avatar]
Newbie Private Message Location: Nr. Coventry, UK Joined: Oct 10, 2015 04:07 Messages: 46 Offline
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I have an i7-920 (12GB RAM) desktop I built 6 yrs ago and a Sony VAIO F11S1E notebook (i7-720QM, 6Gb RAM).

All editing is done on my desktop with 22" monitor and full size keyboard rather than the laptop 17" monitor.

For me, a laptop is for portability/flexability and quick fixes, it's not for spending the day at.

I'm interested in what Eugene has done to upgrade his i7-920 as I'm looking to upgrade my machine. I think a GTX960 and EVO850 SSD will be good start but I also think I would benefit from a new CPU, which of course means new motherboard and memory. Decisions, decisions.

TonyL
Self build Xeon W3690, 12GB RAM, 850EVO SSD, Asus 2GB GTX960, Win10H 64bit, PD14
iMac 27" Retina 5K i5, 24GB RAM, Radeon M295X 4GB, Bootcamp Win10H 64bit
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Neil.F.1955 [Avatar]
Senior Contributor Private Message Joined: Mar 07, 2012 09:15 Messages: 1303 Offline
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Yep, I use a desktop(tower) computer. Desktops have that extra "oomph" in power to do complex editing. So my vote is definitely for desktops!

Cheers!

Neil.
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LostTarget [Avatar]
Newbie Private Message Joined: Jul 09, 2008 11:38 Messages: 39 Offline
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I gather it depends on what level of editing your into and the end purpose. For me it's YouTube videos, not burning disk.

Cost more dollars then a tower, but meets my needs.

17 inch screen, dedicated video card, top of the line Intel processor, and the best hard drive offered at the time of purchase.

Do my best work sitting on the coach, computer sitting on my lap, with the boob tube on : )

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at Oct 26. 2015 17:39

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Neil.F.1955 [Avatar]
Senior Contributor Private Message Joined: Mar 07, 2012 09:15 Messages: 1303 Offline
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Hi, LostTarget!

Simple enough! Put it all down to "Needs as needs must!"

P.S. "hope you finally find your "target"! (ha-ha)

Cheers!

Neil.
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Eugen157
Senior Contributor Private Message Location: Palm Springs area, So.CA Joined: Dec 10, 2012 13:57 Messages: 660 Offline
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TonyL

Why not do the 960 and the SSD first and see what happens. You can always do the CPU and MOBO later.

Good luck

Eugene

73s, WA6JZN ex DL9GC
CYBERLINK PLEASE ADD UHD BLU RAY BURNING SOFTWARE
PD14,
Win10,64bit.CPU i7 6700,16GB ,C= 480 GB SSD ,GPU GTX1060 6GB 1 fan. Plus 3 int, 4 ext HDD's for video etc.LG WH16NS40 reads UHD.
4K 24" ViewSonic monitor.Camera Sony FDR-A
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TonyL [Avatar]
Newbie Private Message Location: Nr. Coventry, UK Joined: Oct 10, 2015 04:07 Messages: 46 Offline
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Yes I did seriously consider doing just that, Eugene, having seen your post. But I'm now considering a custom built new machine.

The i7-920 is a v good CPU but it's now showing its age and lagging behind the newer models. It can still get the job done but pairing it with the 960 and SSD would be like an old man getting a young wife. He wouldn't be able to keep (it) up and it takes longer to get the job done anyway.

Tony Self build Xeon W3690, 12GB RAM, 850EVO SSD, Asus 2GB GTX960, Win10H 64bit, PD14
iMac 27" Retina 5K i5, 24GB RAM, Radeon M295X 4GB, Bootcamp Win10H 64bit
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Eugen157
Senior Contributor Private Message Location: Palm Springs area, So.CA Joined: Dec 10, 2012 13:57 Messages: 660 Offline
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Quote: Yes I did seriously consider doing just that, Eugene, having seen your post. But I'm now considering a custom built new machine.

The i7-920 is a v good CPU but it's now showing its age and lagging behind the newer models. It can still get the job done but pairing it with the 960 and SSD would be like an old man getting a young wife. He wouldn't be able to keep (it) up and it takes longer to get the job done anyway.

Tony




Tony,

My point is that you have to buy those two items anyway so all you loose is the time it takes to install them.



I am shure that some forum members would be very interested in the results.

As mentioned for me, editing in 4K including 265, the results were dramatic. A faster CPU for me, for my particular editing, would be a waste of money.

Before installing the 960 the CPU used to do the encoding decoding while rendering, that is now done by the GPU. As mentioned, after installing the 960, CPU usage dropped from 100% when rendering to around an average of 30% with GPU Video Engine Load at 20 to 50% depending on the format used.



So give it a try and let the forum know.



Eugene 73s, WA6JZN ex DL9GC
CYBERLINK PLEASE ADD UHD BLU RAY BURNING SOFTWARE
PD14,
Win10,64bit.CPU i7 6700,16GB ,C= 480 GB SSD ,GPU GTX1060 6GB 1 fan. Plus 3 int, 4 ext HDD's for video etc.LG WH16NS40 reads UHD.
4K 24" ViewSonic monitor.Camera Sony FDR-A
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GS kid
Newbie Private Message Location: Santa Barbara county, California Joined: Oct 24, 2015 22:25 Messages: 20 Offline
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Of course a desktop will always beat a laptop in performance and upgrade-ability. But just in the last few years, the gap between desktop and laptop performance has narrowed considerably compared to in the past. Laptop CPUs and GPUs are no longer the 2nd class performance jokes they once were 5+ years ago. But desktops will always reign supreme. They should.... considering the room they have for high wattage power supplies to feed any power hungry CPU and GPU you want.

If you have the money... you can have the best of BOTH worlds. Alienware's laptops allow you to use their powerful on-board GPUs when on the go... AND when attached to their optional external graphics amplifier, will allow you to use the latest monster desktop video card with your laptop when at home. And when a better video card comes out, simply buy it and pop it in.

I prefer the portability of my laptop and am willing to sacrifice some performance and ability to upgrade in pursuit of that. I film trains for my YouTube channel in often very remote areas off the beaten path and like the fact I can immediately preview and even edit my clips out in the field IF I so choose to.... or simply wait and edit it when I get back to my hotel room.

My GTX 850M in my laptop is a 1st generation Maxwell. I get plenty of fast rendering with it in PD. Is it as powerful as a desktop and does it render just as quick? No. But it's a gaming-class GPU that's powerful enough that I'm certainly "in the hunt" as they say when it comes to rendering times. And thanks to the HDMI port, I can edit on OR use as a preview window.... my 40-inch 4K UHD television at home. So with the big 4K screen, both a wireless mouse & keyboard, it feels like I have a desktop too.cool Sony FDR-AX100 4K UHD camcorder
Sony ECM-XYST1M Stereo Microphone
Sony VCT-VPR1 Compact Remote Control Tripod
Vello VB-1000 ActionPan Stabilizing Action Grip
PowerDirector 14
Intel i7-4510u w/8GB RAM Nvidia GTX 850M w/4GB

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No matter what you spend, you will get more bang for your buck by going with a desktop unit...but you can't take it with you. i went with a laptop several years ago for the portability, but made sure it had more then bargin basement horsepower. I just upgraded to a 17" ACER Aspire Black Edition with an I7 4720, Nvida GTX960M, 256 gig SSD, 1T hard drive and 16g of ram.....

I think the above has plenty of HP and looking foreward to PD14 when I get time....
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Eugen157
Senior Contributor Private Message Location: Palm Springs area, So.CA Joined: Dec 10, 2012 13:57 Messages: 660 Offline
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Mistake, Sorry

Eugene

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at Oct 28. 2015 00:20

73s, WA6JZN ex DL9GC
CYBERLINK PLEASE ADD UHD BLU RAY BURNING SOFTWARE
PD14,
Win10,64bit.CPU i7 6700,16GB ,C= 480 GB SSD ,GPU GTX1060 6GB 1 fan. Plus 3 int, 4 ext HDD's for video etc.LG WH16NS40 reads UHD.
4K 24" ViewSonic monitor.Camera Sony FDR-A
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Neil.F.1955 [Avatar]
Senior Contributor Private Message Joined: Mar 07, 2012 09:15 Messages: 1303 Offline
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My last attempt to post here hit a brick wall so here we go again.

I'm staying with my desktop for the foreeable future as laptops on sale these days are loaded with Windows 10, which still seems to have some bugs in it, as several reports indicate. My desktop runs Windows 7 Home Premium which has all the "oomph" I need for my editing work.

Cheers!

Neil.
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PepsiMan
Senior Contributor Private Message Location: Clarksville, TN Joined: Dec 29, 2010 01:20 Messages: 1053 Offline
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Quote: hello, Eugene.

wait a sec... who got the brand spanking new ASUS laptop with GTX 965M...

GGRussell!

how's your ASUS doing with PD14???



even SoNic67 suggested to get the desktop; however,

need a laptop with plenty of power for editing 4K videos.

'mine will be ASUS ROG G751JL or MSI GS70 Stealth-608 with GTX 965M...'

my reasoning is i'll be checking off my bucket list soon so need a laptop to go with me

a simple cigarette lighter DC/AC converter will charge the laptop as while driving

point A to B. edit and post on the YouTube on the fly!



when i drove on the Loneliest Road in America, US Route 50 Fallon to Ely, NV with my Note 3,

I had a total of 256GBs of 4K videos. without my Dell XPS L702X, i couldn't have taped that long

on the journey.


I prefer a laptop for convinience and power saving &

use laptop for editing and desktop for rendering...

PepsiMan



p.s.

PD 12Ultimate & HEVC to AVC converter is installed on my laptop Dell XPS L702X &

PD 14Ultimate upgrade from PD12 Ultimate Suite is installed on my desktop.



uh oh,

i just found an another dream...

k.

it's a portable desktop!



it is MSI GT72S Dominator Pro G Dragon with GTX 980. yup, you've read it correctly.

a portable desktop with nVidia GTX 980. no M at the end.

now, that is very serious and your wallet, too. a whopping $3.1K!!!



http://www.notebookcheck.net/Nvidia-GeForce-GTX-980-Notebook-Review.153013.0.html

http://www.pro-star.com/index.php?r=product/index&filter=5



i'm just droooling all over...

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at Oct 28. 2015 01:44

'no bridge too far'

Yashica Electro 8 LD-6 Super 8mm
Asrock TaiChi X470, AMD R7 2700X, W7P 64, MSI GTX1060 6GB, Corsair 16GB/RAM
Dell XPS L702X i7-2860QM, W7P / W10P 64, Intel HD3000/nVidia GT 550M 1GB, Micron 16GB/RAM
Samsung Galaxy Note3/NX1
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Quote: I have an i7-920 (12GB RAM) desktop I built 6 yrs ago and a Sony VAIO F11S1E notebook (i7-720QM, 6Gb RAM).

...but I also think I would benefit from a new CPU, which of course means new motherboard and memory. Decisions, decisions.

TonyL


You can look on eBay for a faster CPU for your platform (LGA1366). Check with your MoBo manufacturer for compatibility, I think a Xeon 5650, 5660, 5670, 5670 or 5680 (6 real cores, 12 hyperthreaded) would improve the performance significantly (they are directly derived from the i7-920 generation by using smaller transistors):

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gulftown

This message was edited 4 times. Last update was at Oct 28. 2015 20:38

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TonyL [Avatar]
Newbie Private Message Location: Nr. Coventry, UK Joined: Oct 10, 2015 04:07 Messages: 46 Offline
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Eugene,

I well understood where you were coming from. It's just that I don't want to buy two components that I may find don't achieve what I want and then have to buy them again in a new PC.

As for the forum members, well I don't think I could add to what you have already said about how well it worked for you. I was and still am interested in how it's working for you. And I haven't yet ruled it out in favour of a new PC. I'm still researching and now SoNic67 has added another possibility that you might also be interested in. I certainly am.

SoNic57,

Thanks for your interesting suggestion as an addition to Eugene's. I've checked my GA-EX58-UD5 mobo cpu compat list and none of the Xeons you list are on it. I've attached a section of the list below. My cpu is at the top and what appears to be the Xeon equiv at the bottom.

Compat List

The W3690 would appear to give me the biggest boost but I guess the 'safest' replacement is the W3565 as it has the same D0 stepping as my 920 - but I don't know if the Stepping matters. It's been that long now since I was into this stuff I've forgotten most of it. I'd appreciate any further suggestions you could make. I'm wondering about what, if any, memory change I might need to make (apart from my own that is).

TonyL Self build Xeon W3690, 12GB RAM, 850EVO SSD, Asus 2GB GTX960, Win10H 64bit, PD14
iMac 27" Retina 5K i5, 24GB RAM, Radeon M295X 4GB, Bootcamp Win10H 64bit
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Eugen157
Senior Contributor Private Message Location: Palm Springs area, So.CA Joined: Dec 10, 2012 13:57 Messages: 660 Offline
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TonyL I now see that you are planning to get a fully equipped PC. There, buying the GPU and SSD might make no sense.

I typically buy a CPU specific, bare bone computer, using CPU build in GPU for example, and the biggest case I can get and then flesh it out to meet my requirements.

For example, the HDD the PC came with would then become HDD # 2 ( an abolute must for video editing) and the cloned new SSD the C drive. The 960 would then take over from the internal CPU GPU, etc. etc

My last computer, bought in Jan 2010 from Costco nicely fit that mold.



Sonice



The most CPU intensive part when video editing has typically been the rendering process. Now, with the advent of the GTX 960 (of whose existense I learned from you) that rendering process is taken over by the GPU with the CPU only playing a supporting role.

My i7920 used to render at 100% now around 30% or less depending on the format used. 4K HEVC, the most demanding, saw a speed improvement of over 30 times with same or better PQ.

How can one possibly expect an improvement, for video related work, of the same scale as the increased performance of the new CPU?

Thus, if true, why pay for a 8 core if a 6 core will do etc etc ?



My PC has 12GB of memory, when rendering 4K the usage is at times over 11GB, so more memory here would clearly be in order

This would apply to PD14 only.




Eugene

This message was edited 8 times. Last update was at Oct 29. 2015 16:52

73s, WA6JZN ex DL9GC
CYBERLINK PLEASE ADD UHD BLU RAY BURNING SOFTWARE
PD14,
Win10,64bit.CPU i7 6700,16GB ,C= 480 GB SSD ,GPU GTX1060 6GB 1 fan. Plus 3 int, 4 ext HDD's for video etc.LG WH16NS40 reads UHD.
4K 24" ViewSonic monitor.Camera Sony FDR-A
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Quote: The most CPU intensive part when video editing has typically been the rendering process. Eugene


In my experience, the CPU speed has to match the GPU one, to be able to "feed" it the required data fast enough. If the CPU is slow, the GPU will not be used at 100%, it will "wait" for the CPU data.
There is some other processing going on, besides the pure video encoding, and those tasks are done by CPU, so yes a faster CPU will help if you do anything else but encoding... Transitions, effects, stuff like that.

Theoretically PassMark score for i7-920 is 5000. For W3690 is 9700. A new Slylake i7-6700 will yield a score of 9950 for a lot more money.

Quote: I'm still researching and now SoNic67 has added another possibility that you might also be interested in. I certainly am.


Hmm, not sure. Golftown is identical with Nehalem (i7-920), except that was build with smaller, more efficent transistors. That's why Intel where able to keep the power requirements the same when they increased the cores count and frequency.
BTW W3690 is Gulftown too (32nm versus 45nm) and it's a good, safe one. The only difference is that the X ones can be used in a dual CPU system too, W ones cannot. It's like $250 on eBay, much cheaper that replacing the whole platform. Add a GTX960 and you are done.

PS: Stepping is not important, it is an Intel internal code for the masks that they used on a certain CPU.

This message was edited 10 times. Last update was at Oct 29. 2015 21:45

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