View Full Version : Can I build a G5 to edit my feature
05-23-2009, 06:58 PM
Hi Guys. I am a writer and director with very little exp. on a MAc. I am going to have to do a lot of the edit process myself. I shot a feature length last year on the Red One in 4 K. I want a 2K finished product for now to submit to the film festivals. I need to go as low dollar as I can, due to spending 6 figures on the production all out of pocket. There are a ton of people trying to unload their MACPRO G5 right now. Their geting really cheap. Question is with the right processor and if I install a 1 TB hardrive or better yet 2 hardrives, can I edit with Final Cut Pro 6.0 on one of these G5 systems? Yes, I know they are older generation now.
Can I upgrade the video card? Can I install a raid on this machine?
Help me out please with some info. I can't invest 2 -3 grand or more in a system.
RED / MAC user for dummies customer
05-23-2009, 07:06 PM
Hi Guys. I am a writer and director with very little exp. on a MAc. I am going to have to do a lot of the edit process myself. I shot a feature length last year on the Red One in 4 K. I want a 2K finished product for now to submit to the film festivals. I need to go as low dollar as I can, due to spending 6 figures on the production all out of pocket. There are a ton of people trying to unload their MACPRO G5 right now. Their geting really cheap.
There is no such thing as a Mac Pro G5. A Mac Pro is an Intel based system. The G5 is a PowerPC based system, and as such will not be able to do any R3d file conversions, nor can it use the Quicktime wrappers. The cases may look similar but these are two completely different machines, and while they can both run Final Cut just fine, Red is not supported on PowerPC systems. Period. The only way you can make it work is by having someone else transcode the files to ProRes or some other supported codec for you.
05-23-2009, 09:02 PM
mmost is right, you need an intel machine. And you will also, I'm guessing, need some decent protected storage-- if you can't afford 2-3 grand for a machine, I suggest you do not need a 2K finish at this point -- that's very high end and requires a higher end setup.
For time being consider finishing in HD (maybe via pro-res) and then make your DVDs for festival submissions -- if you get accepted to such a high end festival that requires 2K, it will be easier to get the money. Very few festivals require a film out these days, and usually high end HD will get you there...
You might consider renting an editing room -- perhaps you might get a better rate from a fellow indie filmmaker -- I don't know where you are, but you can PM if you want -- I might possibly be able to help depending on schedule and location.
Best of luck.
05-23-2009, 10:41 PM
rodbradly is confusing me... If finishing in HD is possible, then why not 2K? Considering 2K is only 128 pixels wider than 1920 of full HD.
It's true that older Power Mac G5 systems are getting cheaper. And these can actually be a good editing solution, if you're aware of the restrictions for RED workflow and if you have a means of getting the footage into a format you can use. I still use my G5 Quad to edit ProRes footage and it works great, it holds 4 drives internally - up to 8 or 9 with some conversion kits. Both hardware and software RAID options exist.
However, mmost is correct. All the REDCODE / R3D conversion tools and application support for Final Cut and Adobe, etc.. requires an Intel-based Mac. So this means that you will still need a Macbook, Macbook Pro, Intel-based iMac or a Mac Pro of some sort.
Other questions for the original poster:
If you have little experience on the Mac, why do you want to jump into using a Mac for this project?
What is your anticipated budget for an editing system? How long do you expect to need this system? How fast to you need it to do actual transcodes and conversions? How much footage do you have to work with?
Cheapest Mac option on a budget that would really work well, would be a pre-owned Macbook Pro. I do quite a bit of on-site editing, plus most of my "DIT tasks" with a 2.5-year-old 15" Macbook Pro. For offloading footage and editing, I use an eSATA RAID, works great.