Mac computers are a standard in the video production world, so you can't go wrong with a Mac. But choosing the right one can be a bit tricky depending on your budget and the level of video editing performance you need. On the higher end, the Mac Pro is scheduled for release in Fall and is set to be Apple's most powerful machine yet: offering up to an astounding 28 core-processor with up to 1. Until the Mac Pro is released, your next best performing mac is the iMac Pro.
A terrific, high performing, computer for video editing.
The The base model starts with 8GB of memory, 1TB hard drive, 3. Otherwise, the iMac is our overall best choice in Mac for professional video editing. Look for the Mac Pro launching in Fall -- for those who need ultimate editing power. Make sure to get the model with the i5 processor for best video editing performance.
If you absolutely need as much graphical grunt as possible, this might fit the bill. Let us know and share which specs you think are most important for productive work. It comes with hinge that lets you flip the screen all the way down to edit video and it can be used with a pen for drawing too. This can be done, but the practice is not officially endorsed by Apple. CPU: 2. For overall quality, the Pro Display XDR promises to be the best monitor on the market and the hands-down choice of professionals. The requirements listed here are the base requirements only.
There are six expansion ports at the back for either USB or Thunderbolt external storage. Or pay a few hundred dollars extra for the more powerful i7.
This machine is a great choice for mid-range video editing with stability and speed adequate for any standard documentary project. And course you'll need to budget for a monitor. In general, laptops are not the best choice as a long-term video editing solution. You tend to pay more for less with laptops and the smaller screen size is not ideal for the detail work involved in video editing.
By picking up a Thunderbolt Chassis, such as the Sonnet Echo series, you can install most PCIe hardware in an external enclosure with its own power supply and use it just like it was installed internally. Many PCIe cards offer drivers for Thunderbolt support. Those that don't can often still be used by slightly altering some text in the relevant kernel extension's. To avoid an unexpected reboot, you'll need to ensure that the Thunderbolt enclosure is powered on before booting up the Mac Pro and that you don't turn it off while the computer is running.
I said before that the Mac Pro has six Thunderbolt ports. Well, there's a slight catch. And the Mac Pro appears ready. Apple officially claims the computer can support up to three 4K displays. In fact, considering a single consumer Radeon card can drive a 16K x 16K video wall through one DisplayPort 1. But once again, the Mac Pro has gotten ahead of itself. If you just want to hook up a 4K TV to the HDMI port or a Thunderbolt port using an adapter and push out video at 24 to 30 frames per second, you're in good shape. MST is a feature of the DisplayPort 1.
As a workaround to get 4K60 right now, you have to send two of these streams at half 4K resolution x to a single 4K computer monitor.
Unfortunately, at the moment, only a handful monitors know how to deal with MST streams in this configuration. Let's face it: not everyone in the video-editing community is going to need a Mac Pro—although we may all want one. A lot can be accomplished on mid-range consumer desktops or even laptops these days.
The system offers as much power as you can get without building a machine yourself. And it fits in even among the most modern, stylish decor. If you are planning on editing multiple streams of 4K RAW, if you are doing advanced color correction, or if you're creating 3D animation, you're probably a candidate for a Mac Pro. If you're editing a wedding or corporate videos shot in AVCHD and doing minimal color correction, then to say the Mac Pro is overkill is probably an understatement—most likely an iMac will serve your needs just fine. If you find yourself spending a lot of time waiting for things to render, or if you've thrown on so many effects in the time lime the footage is unplayable, the dual GPUs and 12 cores might be just what you need.
At the same time, it is important to remember that simply throwing more power at the problem won't always solve the problem. If you're still editing on Final Cut 7, for example, then all of the processing cores and RAM in the world isn't going to make the program run any faster. FCP7 was written to run on ditch water because that was exactly what you needed back in the day.
But today it simply can't take advantage of a more powerful machine. Once it has consumed 1. Regardless of what kind of video you are editing or grading, what really determines whether the Mac Pro is worthwhile is the software you plan to use. In general, software that we can expect to be able to exploit what the Mac Pro has to offer will be the latest, most top of the line, applications like Blackmagic Design DaVinci Resolve or AutoDesk Softimage.
Authors of these kinds of programs expect you to be using high-performance workstations, because the workflow they entail requires it, and will develop their product accordingly. Thunderbolt also supports daisy-chaining of up to six devices. Parallel processing results in more efficient workflows, including faster transcode times and the ability to play back video in full quality and in real time even after effects and color corrections have been applied. Decoding, rendering, transcoding, effects processing all still rely, at least to some extent, on the CPU.
Having multi-core, multi-threaded processors is essential for many of today's HD and 4K productions. In the case of the new Mac Pro and the iMac Pro , these starting options are quite similar. While it will be months before anyone has the chance to actually compare the performance offered by both systems, it's reasonable to think that these basic models will offer similar overall capabilities.
But there are some substantial differences, as well. One of the big ones is that the iMac Pro, with its all-in-one design, has a built-in high-end display. Aside from the display, the Mac Pro is more upgradeable, regardless of the configuration you buy. This can be done, but the practice is not officially endorsed by Apple. The Mac Pro's expandability offers huge long-term value to professionals, because they can update the hardware in the future, keeping pace with changes in technology and heavier workflows without jettisoning the entire system.
The top configurations of the Mac workstations are an entirely different matter.
Without the physical constraints of the iMac's slim housing, the Mac Pro has room to expand and grow well beyond what the iMac Pro can offer, and these differences are most stark when comparing the top configurations. Aside from the fact that both systems can be outfitted with up to 4TB of solid state storage, the two top-of-the-line systems are almost nothing alike.
Whereas the iMac Pro can be outfitted with an core processor, the Mac Pro can scale up to a jaw-dropping 28 cores. While that's not unprecedented in the realm of workstation PCs — HP's got workstations with even larger RAM options — it's miles beyond anything else in the Mac family.
In graphics processing, the other major piece of any workstation, there's a huge difference between the two systems. But even a more powerful GPU can't compete with multiple cards working in tandem.
The two GPUs are connected by some specialized circuitry that Apple is calling Infinity Fabric Link, and it sounds as if this two-cards-in-one approach allows the machine to transfer data between the GPUs much, much faster. For higher-end configurations, it's not even close. You can outfit the expandable Mac Pro with a huge array of powerful components, going far beyond what the top configuration of the iMac Pro can provide.