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Feb 14, 2008

All David...all the TIME!

I see there's a laptop thread in here, and an Apple thread, but I need some advice on choosing between the two.

I have a new job as a 'documentarian' for an education project for my province. I'm interviewing people using a JVC camcorder that records AVCHD file formats.

I have experience with Movie Maker for making Youtube videos, but when this project started I moved to the computer labs at the University to try out Apple software. The trouble was Apple couldn't read AVCHD files. So I rebooted into Windows 7 and taught myself to use Adobe Premiere Elements, which worked quite nicely for what I needed.

But now I've been offered the chance to get a laptop for producing videos on, and I'm torn. My budget is essentially 'the cost of whatever you need'. I'm looking at a refurbished Macbook Pro for 879, but I'm guessing I could get a Windows laptop for cheaper, and then shell out the 120 for the Adobe software I'm used to. I've watched some tutorial videos of iMovie and I think it can do what I need it to, but I'll have the annoying step of converting files to an acceptable format before I can work with them. I guess I'm just tempted by Apple's reputation for working with media, and I like the idea of a laptop with Flash memory for playing with big files quickly, but any input you might have would be greatly appreciated! Please let me know if I've missed any pertinent information.


Feb 6, 2004

Dehumanize yourself and face to Trumpshed

College Slice

I'm going to pre-emptively close this thread, not because you did anything wrong or this isn't a valid question, but because I can't imagine this thread producing anything more than a worst-post contest.

At the end of the day, this comes down to one question: do you prefer working on a Mac, or on a Windows PC? Forget any BS you've heard about Macs being better for media, are you more comfortable with Mac OSX or Windows, or do you strongly prefer the overall experience of a Mac laptop vs a PC? This should drive your choice of platform.

From a hardware perspective, I would strongly suggest you consider a 15" notebook with a quad-core CPU with 8GB of RAM and a decent-sized harddrive as a bare minimum for the system you need. The refurbished Mac you linked wouldn't be suitable because , as a 13.3" model, it only has a 2.4Ghz dual-core CPU, 4GB of RAM (not upgradeable), and a 128GB SSD. I think any 15" Retina MBP should work for you, since they all have quad-core CPUs and at least 8GB of RAM, but a Late 2013 or better model would be best. A current PC laptop with these specs is under $1000 (just an example, check the thread for purchasing advice), a current MBP starts at $2000. Do keep in mind your storage requirements, a fast 256GB SSD sounds great, but if your need for space makes that inconvenient then a slower, larger HDD may be a better choice.

Once you've made a decision on what platform you want to go with, I'd post in either the Laptop Megathread or Mac Hardware Megathread to refine your purchasing decision. Be VERY wary of people suggesting you can get by with less than the minimum specs I outlined above, some people have rather interesting definitions of acceptable performance.

Alereon fucked around with this message at 18:18 on Jul 5, 2015

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