Help me choose- Which dual core desktop specifically for HDV editing?

Discussion in 'Amateur Video Production' started by Jim Gunn, Apr 9, 2006.

  1. Jim Gunn

    Jim Gunn Guest

    I have an immediate need to pick up a faster pc for HDV video editing
    to fit into my already exisiting standard definition digital video
    post-production suite. I like Dell's and have great experience with
    the three I own, so am looking at the Dell Outlet for the best and
    cheapest basic dual core system with Win XP SP2 to get me started
    quickly. Most of the available inventory look like XPS 400 models,
    and some XPS 600 models wich are more expensive.

    Mmy question- What is the significant differences between a Dual core
    Pentium D 820, 830 and 840 models versus the Pentium D at the same
    clock speed respectively with the 920, 930, and 940 designations? Is
    it worth paying more for the latter to do HDV editing?
    Jim Gunn, Apr 9, 2006
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  2. Jim Gunn

    gg Guest

    You may also want to try
    gg, Apr 9, 2006
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  3. Jim Gunn

    J. Clarke Guest

    There's a comparison chart at

    Main differnces are that the 900s have twice the cache, are made on the .65
    micron process rather than the .9, and support ring minus 1 for

    Bottom line is that all else being equally they'll run most code a little
    bit faster and run a little bit cooler and consume a little bit less power.

    There shouldn't be a huge price difference--some of the retail-boxed 900s
    are going for less than the equivalent 800s.
    J. Clarke, Apr 9, 2006
  4. Jim Gunn

    nappy Guest


    What is virtualization.. and ring minus 1? I have seen that elsewhere
    and I am curious.

    nappy, Apr 9, 2006
  5. Jim Gunn

    J. Clarke Guest

    From the 80386 on, Intel approached the problem of backward compatibility by
    giving the processor the ability to emulate itself inside a closed
    "sandbox" whose properties the OS programmer could define. It took a while
    to make this useful as it was necessary to write emulate the other hardware
    that is part of the PC, but eventually success was achieved, with some

    The big difficulty was that to do this Intel designed their processors with
    several different privilege levels, called "rings", with "ring 0" being the
    highest. It was intended that Ring 0 be reserved for virtual machine
    managers but it didn't work out that way, with OS developers immediately
    grabbing it for the kernel. Nonetheless, Connectix (bought out by
    Microsoft), vmWare, and another outfit whose name escapes me at the moment
    managed to put out usable virtual machine managers that allowed a number of
    operating systems to run simultaneously on a machine--for example on an NT
    machine I've had Windows 98, Novell, and Linux all going at the same time.
    I've also had Vista, OS/X, Plan 9, and other oddballs runnning in virtual
    machines under XP.

    Still, since there is contention for Ring 0, there are performance problems
    occasionally and every once in a while something dies the death.

    Intel and AMD have both come up with a solution to this--they've added an
    additional privilege level for virtual machine managers, that's sometimes
    referred to as "Ring Minus One", and all the major vendors of virtual
    machine managent software have announced support for it.

    For running Premiere and the like it's not terribly useful. For keeping
    malware at bay it's lovely--do your Internet access from a virtual machine
    and malware can't get out of the box--if the virtual machine gets
    contaminated, you fix it by just copying one file. And for generally
    dinking about with computers it's incredible--if you have one reasonably
    fast machine with adequate RAM then you can emulate an entire network on
    the one box.
    J. Clarke, Apr 10, 2006
  6. Jim Gunn

    link-pan Guest

    I definitely like the XPS series from DELL - but software is important as
    well for HDV. Just starting to get into HDV and was wondering about the
    software end. From what I gather my current software from Ulead - Media
    Studio Pro has the advantage over other HDV editing software as it
    natively handles HDV - whereas the other software needs to do an
    intermediate recode, slowing down the machine. You might try a free
    trial of Media Studio Pro - fully functional for 30 days - at and see if their software will be a help and then save the
    extra on a new machine.
    link-pan, Apr 10, 2006
  7. Jim Gunn

    nappy Guest

    great info! Thanks J. I now recall a discussion about rings a long time
    ago.. barely understood it then either! ;)

    nappy, Apr 10, 2006
  8. Jim Gunn

    Jim Gunn Guest

    Cool, I just ordered a XPS 400 Pentium D 9300 model from the Dell
    Outlet with 1 Gb of RAM (soon to be upgraded to 2 Gb) and a dual layer
    DVD burner for a *very* good price. I already use Premiere Pro
    1.5.1. and Adobe Encore 1.5 for DVD authoring in my editing suite and
    I just purchased Aspect HD from Cineform , so I am all set software
    Jim Gunn, Apr 10, 2006
  9. Jim Gunn

    link-pan Guest

    An XPS is a wonder that I have experienced for quality - but with three
    girls in Catholic School with uniforms, tuition, house payments, etc, it
    is going to be purchased but I will need to wait till June, but honestly
    about July.

    I am so happy for you. You have a winner. But again, I would like you
    to look at the Media Studio Pro Link I gave. The HDV argument reminds me
    of old arguments over MPEG2. One could run software for MPEG2 capture -
    or one could run hardware. I bought an MPEG2 Hardware card when I had a
    P2 and it outperforms any software solution today.

    The Media Studio Pro uses a proxy to create a low-resolution copy of what
    you are editing - and then finalizes on the original after done - so no
    recode required.

    Just check this link - because even with a great computer - your software
    could be dragging you down. With the computer you are buying - no proxy
    is required with Media Studio Pro and just does native editing.

    For a free trial of 30-days why not try. I know I would with a new
    system just bought. But hope all well. I am just an old nanny.

    cya and enjoy.
    link-pan, Apr 10, 2006
  10. Jim Gunn

    David Chien Guest -> latest CPU interactive charts.

    Basically, AMD Athlon X2 duo core CPUs will kill just about any other
    CPU out there today for the video editing/encoding/rendering tasks they
    benchmarked. (individual benchmarks may vary, so choose depending on
    what you find most important)

    And, at the same price range AMD X2's are cheaper than any Pentium out
    there for the same/better performance at current prices (
    and other price search engines).
    David Chien, Apr 10, 2006
  11. Jim Gunn

    Scubajam Guest

    I'm editing HD with Ulead MSP8. Just upgraded motherboard and cpu to
    AMD dual core 3800 with 2 gig RAM. Works great. Instead of a complete
    new computer, why not buy parts? Fry's at has frequent
    sales of MB and CPU under $300 for dual core. Use your existing box,
    all the drives, and maybe have to upgrade to newer version of RAM
    depending on how old your existing is. Still, a complete upgrade at
    half the price. I'd also recommend a upgraded power supply. Go to and get a $53 power supply that heavy duty with 420
    watts. It's not only the wattage, it's the build quality that
    maintains even voltage. I just had a 300 gig drive fried circuit board
    due to voltage fluctuation. By upgrading you also don't need to pay
    Microsoft for a new OS, if you're running XP now. Save on the case,
    DVD burner, hard drives, OS, etc. Just use your existing. You only
    need a cheap 128 meg video card, unless you want TV out or something.
    Remember, video editing outputs 2D only, so no need for a heavy duty
    video card. Those are for gamers with quickly changing 3D backgrounds.

    My Ulead HD system is stable, scrubs in real time due to proxy file
    system, and now with dual core I can use computer for internet, email,
    and other operations while it renders. I couldn't do that without a
    hiccup before. Also, I never drop a single HD frame with Ulead
    capture. It's funny, captures mpeg2, Upper Field first (different for
    me), but 25,000 bit rate for HD. HD files are still 13 gig/hour on the
    computer, same as DV, but more info is compressed in that 13 gig.

    Good luck. Hope this helps.
    Jim McGauhey
    Washington State
    Scubajam, Apr 11, 2006
  12. Jim Gunn

    Jim Gunn Guest

    Thx for the comments. I work at a breakneck pace, I don't have time to
    build or upgrade pcs. I am happy with Intels and I got a great
    inexpesive deal at the Dell outlet. So the new dual core Pentium D 930
    should serve me well. My existing Dell P4 2.6 Ghz pc will still be
    heavily used for standard definition dv editing and encoding. I
    don't intend to switch editing apps. I am already very handy with
    Premiere Pro, Adobe Encore and Photoshop so no point switching to
    another editing app now. Thanks for the advice.
    Jim Gunn, Apr 11, 2006
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