OK, basically I need some info on what I need in a laptop (both software and hardware) to make short films. If anyone can provide some advice or some kind of buyers guide it would be extremely helpful. The only background I can provide is that I am a complete novice who is reasonably poor. Any advice would be appreciated.
(It’s possible that this has been posted before but I didn’t see anything)
First question for software might be which operating system do you have on your laptop?
Actually I’m in the market for a new laptop and wondering what I should get that will enable me to make a short film.
well if you’re broke, I’d say get a macbook. Slightly more expensive I suppose, but if you want simple editing system, it usually comes with imovie.
If he’s broke, get a macbook? Really? Mac, or anything by Apple, is insanely overpriced and not meant for broke people.
My advice: do not get a laptop. They’re never going to give you the bang for the buck a desktop editing system will give you.
What you should do is look into building your own PC desktop. Go with an i5 quadcore CPU from Intel, which is more than fast enough to edit HD video. You can easily get away with building a system in the 700-800 dollar range, screen and hard drive included. If that is too much, look into getting an AMD CPU. It will probably mean longer render times, but will save you a few hundred.
If you are really poor, you can probably build something like a barebones i3 system for less than 400 bucks. This might mean really long render times and HD playback will get choppy at larger resolutions.
Do a bunch of research into it. It’s not as scary as it sounds. There are tons of step by step guides on how to build your own PC. You can all the same components that are in an iMac at half the price.
As for software: there is very cheap or free software out there. Lightworks has a pretty decent free version apparently, and soon they will unveil their $60 a year pro model, which is a good deal. Reaper is good for sound editing, because it’s also cheap.
You could also just pirate software if you are very desperate.
Don’t get a Mac; they’re overpriced as shit. As John Pastuch said, get a desktop if you can, then pirate something like Premiere.
Thanks for the advice, I will look into building a desktop.
To me, a Mac, is worth the money you out into it. It’ll last.
Tommy, I never meant to infer that Mac’s aren’t well built. But it’s mostly a branding/fashion thing. You can build or buy a PC that runs just as well.
OP is broke which means he can’t afford ANY current gen Macs. If he builds his own PC, his bang for buck ratio nearly triples. You can build a PC with the same parts as a Mac and it will be $1200 instead of $2500. And OP can make a pretty good PC system under $1000 (screen included!) with some research. Apple just does not offer these kinds of options.
Understandable, PC’s make no sense to me so I really can’t judge. I’ve always used Mac. I run on a MacBook that was $1500 and a ripped copy of final cut 7.
@Jacob I’ve been meaning to get a MacBook myself, (Pro). I still do not know tons about things such as Final Cut Studio or really just about a lot of the features on a MacBook Pro, but I see on Amazon, if you want to buy a Mac, you can buy it used off of Amazon. I think you can go down to the $800 or little lower price mark. Also, I have seen, if you want to go desktop, that an Imac does not cost a lot, maybe half a thousand dollars, I really can’t remember but you can look on Amazon and see what the prices are yourself. Try typing in the browser on Amazon: Used MacBook Pro or Used Imac, because sometimes, I don’t believe they always show up if you just type MacBook Pro or Imac. I’m sort of sold on Apples myself. Right now, I have an Imac g3, which is pretty ancient, which I got for free from my cousin. I’m trying to get a MacBook Pro myself with some of my savings, a gift certificate I received from my brother and his wife on Amazon and some more money from the money I get back this year from my taxes. I just have to pay some bills in the meantime. I find Macs to be extremely user friendly based on the computer I have and when I have used the products at my local Mac store. Also, you can go on Apple’s website or even Amazon and you’ll find refurbished Macs, which is where someone has bought the computer and returned it for some reason and Apple fixes it and sells it again for a lower price. Whatever you decide to do, good luck!
Oh, and I forgot to mention that you can also buy Final Cut Studio which includes Final Cut Pro with it. Right now, they have Final Cut Pro X I believe, but I hear that the earlier versions of Final Cut Pro work better. You can get Final Cut Studio off of Amazon as well where I believe they sell anywhere from the $200 to $500 range. Their is also an intermediate editing software that Apple has discontinued called Final Cut Express. They can possess some of the features you would find on a previous edition of Final Cut Pro, i.e. I believe they offered to change video frame rates of 30 fps to 24 fps so it could be shown in a theater. You can also buy Final Cut Studio or Express off of eBay. And that go’s for Mac computers as well. They have a Buy It Now feature which I believe you can buy the item without worrying if your bid is going to be accepted. But I have never used eBay myself, so I guess you’d have to do some research. Sorry I forgot to put this in my first post, but I didn’t think of it at the time. In any case, I hope that helps.
I never understood why FCP became so popular.