View Full Version : Best Vid Cards for P4 Sys?
11-19-2003, 08:30 PM
Helloo, I just registered today and am getting the DVX at the end of the month and have been following everyones progress here.
Ok, Im running a P4 Dual Processor and Im in a HUGE debate. Which video card I should go with to get the best results. I'm aware... realtime fx's may be an option to pass up and i won't get everything all in 1 card. But im looking for quality, efficiancy and reliabilaty. The cards im looking at are:
Matrox, Canapus Storm and... what else would you recomend. Its going to be used strickly for NLE purposes. No gaming. I will be having dual monitors.
If anyone could, please help a newbie.
Thanks for the help.
11-19-2003, 09:33 PM
Matrox, Canapus Storm and... what else would you recomend
By mentioning Canopus Storm, are you saying that you want a realtime editing board? Or a video graphics card? If you want a realtime NLE board, none support 24p. I have a Matrox RT.X100, although good, it does offer me some grief, and always at the worst possible times. AND, did I mention it doesn't support 24p?! If you have a Dual P4, I suggest you do with the software only route; less problems this way! I could go on and on about hardware NLE boards, so I'll stop there.
Now, if you are looking for a video card, then an interresting card is the Matrox Parhelia tripple head card. For editors like us, you can hook up 2 monitors, and a TV (ref monitor) on the third port. This allows for WYSIWYG in various applications such as After Effect, PhotoShop, 3D Studio Max, and more. The Matrox is not a dire pixel pusher though, and if you are looking for the creme-de-la-creme in OpenGL cards today, then look no further then the ATI 9800 Pro TX. And of course, there are always the good old classic nVidia cards.
I've said a lot, but your choice really depends on what you need, and of course your budget. Do you want to do 3D stuff? Or just 2D and video? In which case you can always go the cheap and stable way with a Matrox G550.
11-19-2003, 09:40 PM
I was looking at other threads and came across this personaly built syes... what do you all make of it?
ASUS P4C800-E Deluxe MB
Pentium 4 - 3.0GHz HT Processor w/800 MHz FSB
Antec Tru550 - 550W PS
1GB Kingston DDR400 PC3200 Ram (2 X 512)
Matrox G550 32MB DDR 4X AGP Display Card
Dual Display - (2) ViewSonic VP181b (18" LCD)
Western Digital 120 GB 7200 RPM 8MB Cache - System Drive (Primary Master)
Western Digital 120 GB 7200 RPM 8MB Cache - Export Drive (Primary Slave)
Western Digital 120 GB 7200 RPM 8MB Cache - A/V Drive #1 (Secondary Master)
Sony DRU510A DVD Burner (Secondary Slave)
Western Digital 120 GB 7200 RPM 8MB Cache - A/V Drive #2 (Promise P-ATA Controller on MB)
Samsung 1.44MB Floppy Drive
Logitech Cordless MX Duo - Keyboard/Mouse
Aardvark Direct Pro 24/96 Sound Card/Interface Box
Kingwin KT-424-BK 10-Bay Mid Tower Case
Windows XP Pro - SP1
Matrox RT.X100 Extreme Pro
Adobe Premiere Pro
Adobe After Effects
11-19-2003, 09:48 PM
[quote author=Flintstone link=board=Links;num=1069302601;start=0#1 date=11/19/03 at 21:33:23]
By mentioning Canopus Storm, are you saying that you want a realtime editing board? *Or a video graphics card? *If you want a realtime NLE board, none support 24p.
-- I thought that would be the case with those cards not supporting it.
*I have a Matrox RT.X100, although good, it does offer me some grief, and always at the worst possible times. *AND, did I mention it doesn't support 24p?! *If you have a Dual P4, I suggest you do with the software only route; less problems this way! *I could go on and on about hardware NLE boards, so I'll stop there.
-- Could you actually elaborate on NLE boards.
Now, if you are looking for a video card, then an interresting card is the Matrox Parhelia tripple head card. *For editors like us, you can hook up 2 monitors, and a TV (ref monitor) on the third port. *This allows for WYSIWYG in various applications such as After Effect, PhotoShop, 3D Studio Max, and more. *The Matrox is not a dire pixel pusher though, and if you are looking for the creme-de-la-creme in OpenGL cards today, then look no further then the ATI 9800 Pro TX. *And of course, there are always the good old classic nVidia cards.
-- Will the ATI support 24p.
I've said a lot, but your choice really depends on what you need, and of course your budget. *
My budget right now is standing at 2,000. I will be doing only video and some 2D.
Do you want to do 3D stuff? Or just 2D and video? *In which case you can always go the cheap and stable way with a Matrox G550.
All this is driving me mad...... i guess its a part of life.
11-19-2003, 11:56 PM
G550 is crap.. get a dual headed ATI or a Geforce fx. Either way, most of them come with dual heads.
Nowadays you dont need a realtime card.. unless you do intense compositions or crazy transistions in which case you should be shot.
Most NLE's now do realtime effects.. to some degree.
ATI supports 24p.. but it is a "gamers" card.. doesnt do the realtime effects. But procs now can handle the realtime stuff without the added hardware.
11-20-2003, 05:37 AM
unless you do intense compositions or crazy transistions in which case you should be shot.
All this time I though that heart shaped transisions were the way to go with each scene changes for a 3 hour video? ::)
Go back to bed Flintstone, you only had 4 hours of sleep! You should really get a life! ;D
11-20-2003, 01:19 PM
yeah Im a Nvidia guy myself, but the Quadro is a little overkill unless your do alot of 3d Stuff.
11-20-2003, 05:26 PM
this should be a whole seperate area into itself.
Some many diffrent views on cards... hmm... now im stuck. :-X
I don't think this was asked yet, but what exactly to you mean to do with your computer?
Since you're asking on a video-centric forum, I'm assuming you'll be interested in editing you videos. What video card to get (or whether you even need one for this purpose) largely depends on what NLE you'll be using. Many current NLEs are considered "software only", meaning that the load is handled by the software and the CPU. None of the load is taken by the graphics card. NLEs like Vegas are software only.
There are other NLE's like Premier that can use certain video cards specifically made to speed up editing in premier. However, premier doesn't natively support 24P, and these cards ONLY work with premier, they don't contribute to anything else.
There are also NLEs like Avid that use a special box that accelerates editing/effects so that it's more realtime.
Finally, though I have yet to try it out, Pinnacle Edition is supposed to be able to divert some of the load to the GPU on the video card where effects are rendered in the background. This is supposed to effectively make pretty much everything realtime when used in conjunction with a fast CPU (a dual 3GHz should suffice ;)). But, like I said, I have yet to use this program so I couldn't say how well it works in this respect.
On the flipside, if you're going to be doing motion graphics, compositing, and the like, you might be using programs such as after effects or combustion. AFAIK, these programs don't benefit greatly from video cards during rendering. However, there is supposed to be a performance benefit when using a good GL card during the composing phase (where you create your animations animations, etc.)
Video cards like the ATI 9800 are meant more for gamers and don't offer a whole lot for editors in terms of price:value.
Unless you're doing high level 3d work, where a $1k+ video card would come in handy, you would be better off with a simple card with a fast GPU and lots of video memory (at least 128, but 256 would be ideal) to aid in screen refresh, etc. But as noted above, the NLE you'd be using is more a determinant factor as to what vid card you should have.
11-20-2003, 07:00 PM
That's basically what I ended up telling Jamie.. Save the money on video card and spend it on CPU and mem.
11-21-2003, 06:30 AM
the setup your describing is very similar to mine..except my p4 is a weeny bit faster + i use 250 gigabyte drives, and have a matrox parhelia card running a triple head desktop, with the rtx100 extreme used as *a seperate full resolution video monitor out .. so its 4 displays in all which is very easy to get comfy with. , i also have a bunch of pro audio stuff *thrown in mine from my audio studio. *i wouldnt trade the system for anything else.. the triple monitor desktop speeds up work immensly, as well as having the ntsc monitor. *although the rtx100 (extreme)cards as afore mentioned DO NOT do 24p work, and i find it rather usless for my *film work(aside from the fact it still provides a full res ntsc out so i can have the 3 monitor desktop off the parhelia), but for editing stuff shot in 24pn or 60i which will stay in the ntsc realm its pretty nice.. really speeds up workflow, and espescially exporting in realtime. but again i really dont use its other features that much cause i mostly just do film work. but it does provide easy analog video capture through that s-video or composite too if you ever need it.. *i also use Sonic solutions Reel DVD full version with ac3 encoding. instead of the encore dvd. anyhoo if you gets yerself a setup like that im sure you wouldnt be dissapointed. my one suggestion is that if your going to run a drive on the serial ata, you should try to run all the drives on ata. *the drag part of the setup is the pricetag.. *be sure to build it yourself, as that will lower the cost some. i picked my monitors up for free from some good freinds who had just bought new ones. tht saved some dough too. and i built my computer desk to suite,.. so that saved some too. good luck and have fun.
11-21-2003, 11:23 AM
Let me turn this around a bit, if you don't mind.
I would have to disagree with iamloser on one point only. Building your system by yourself is great if you know what you're doing. But depending on what NLE you'll be using (hardware or software), things can get messy.
Regardless of the components, ask yourself the eternal and all encompassing question: "What will I be using this computer for?" Yes, we know it'll be for producing videos, but with what software (or group of software)? Today, in general, we tend to choose a computer first, and software as an after thought. Now this is fine with general-purpose computers, it is wrong to think you can do the same with specific-purpose computers.
First choose your NLE software! In the end, how and why you choose a specific NLE is your choice. But first, there are some fundamental questions you have to ask yourself. Write down a list of requirements (such as 24p ;)), and evaluate the different products. Check out other software that you might need, such as compositors, 3D apps, etc.
Once you have selected the NLE software that is right for you, look at the manufacturer’s system recommendations, and follow them seriously. Some manufacturers are very specific in their requirements, so that should take the guesswork out when choosing the hardware you'll need.
11-21-2003, 11:55 AM
..im not sure how that disagrees with what i had to say, but it is VERY VERY good advice .
..the specific system we are referring to is actually one configured to suite runnning the software packages, and hardware acceleration he was wondering about- i gave it the green light because i already have the setup, and knew that it has been configuered specifically to optimally run those specific software/hardware combinations he described. and i tried to note any differences made.
11-21-2003, 03:24 PM
Hey guys, thanx for the help.. i appreciate it!!
I talked to Mike from in-sync and we disscussed sys's and since i will be editing 24p Blade software should be an option to look at.
He was telling me to pick up the Matrox Paharphelia (I spelt it wrong i think) and things should run well with it. But i like iamaloser's idea of running to vid cards... seems like another area to look into.
Flinstone, thanks too.
11-21-2003, 10:38 PM
Yes there are some pretty smart peeps in here.
11-22-2003, 06:18 AM
just to be clear, im not running 2 vid cards. im running a matrox rtx100extreme, as a video editing hardware accelerator for premiere, and an ntsc monitor output to my video monitor(the rtx does not run a computer monitor). the matrox parhelia is the only vid card running, and it handles running a 3 monitor desktop on its own. (very nicely may i add). and i cant take credit for the idea either.. matrox suugests the combination, and even sells them together in package deals for high end video workstaions. i just thought it seemed like a pretty good solution , and took the bait.. ive been pleasantly pleased with it so far.
11-22-2003, 09:21 AM
Iamloser, I almost have the same config as you, RTX100 and Parhelia, but only 2 monitors. :(
Got to ask this, as one RTX user to another. Is your system stable? I mean, do you crash every now and then when you're in Premiere with a medium to complex project? Are you running Premiere 6.5, or Premiere Pro? What do you do when you want to edit in native 24p? Do you convert it with a tool such as DVFilm Maker and run Premiere stand alone (Without Matrox stuff)? I'm really curious to hear from your experiences with your system.
In general, for fast and simple projects, my system works fine. But when it decides to freak out and crash, it always happens when I really need the system the most. And that really pisses me off. That is the biggest reason I am in search of a new NLE (with native 24p support).
11-22-2003, 10:46 AM
i have only had one system crash ever.. but ive learned that with any long term project on a computer ,the answer is always saving often . it only takes .2 secs to hit cntrl + s every now and then. but again ive only ever crashed once. a big part of having a rtx100 premiere system work properly is haveing ALL your drivers updated with the latest and greatest, and having all patches or upgrades installed..+lots of RAM. check the matrox website for anything new. +having it configured as reccomended in the rtx manual is imperitave(which is the best way to configure an av system anyway- but its also requires updated usb and other system drivers.) *its run really well for me . i dont use the rtx1oo for editing realy too much at all cause i do mostly 24p work-but its nice for the monitor out. but i am also considering getting a new nle with native 24p support(i use dv filmmaker currently). although i love premiere intuitive interface,editing capeabilities, and design..espescially ppro. * but the rtx 100 will still provide a monitor out with any directx direct show compliant nle(any of them) and the parhelia of course works with all nles for 3 monitor desktop editing . so ill just use the rtx for ntsc editing with premiere, and the new nle for film work.. im really waiting until next summer before getting any new nle though to see if a 24p plugin for premiere should happen to come out, or ill just get the newest version nle at that time..probably vegas. *im not sure what else to say... * * * * * * * * * * *...yeah canada!!
so anyway.. get yourself a 3rd monitor .. just get a used one out of the paper if nothing else.. i wonder how i would ever get by with just 2 .. and editing on my other comp with one little screen is like trying to play a soccer game in my bathroom. waaaay too cramped. * i probably sound really spoiled talking like that, but hey.. i've worked pretty hard to buy the tools i have, and monitors are easy to get cheap or free. hope ive been at all a help in this reply.
11-22-2003, 02:44 PM
Yeah! Well, my system is configured as Matrox recommends, as well as all the patches and updated have been installed. The best I can figure, the culprit must be Adobe Premiere 6.5. I just got Premiere Pro, hopefully with the new Matrox toolset it should be better. If only someone had the guts to create a 24p plugging for Premiere, that would be awesome. Alas, such a plugging should work with the Matrox tools, so that means, Adobe must create it, and that appears to be unlikely. Adobe are bastards!
11-24-2003, 10:50 PM
Guys thanks for helping me out... i Appreciate it alot!!
ANy more pointers or questions for me that you may think of to help me out, throw'em my way.
11-29-2003, 01:40 PM
ANy pointers on best speaker setup?
Also... anyone using Protools?
11-29-2003, 03:34 PM
Ok every one seems to be getting all the suggestions wrong. First of all just about ever one of thoese video cards they mention are simply video game cards with different drivers. They all pretty much have the same technology on them and wont help you out much.
If you have a bit of a budget then stay away from Nvidia, ATI, and Matrox... No card they have will give you the best performanance. Not to mention next year they will have a video game card that is better than your so called production card.
My suggestion.. is to go with a PRO card. Namley 3D Labs Wildcat video cards. Either the Wildcat 4 or teh wildcat VP. Course some of the top end video cards are up to $ 2,500+ dollars but what you get is more power than you can deal with. How does 328 MB of DDR ram sound for video?
These cards are perfect for 3D and advanced video production. If you use After Effects, then this is your video card.
Check out the site and it will bring you around.
If you want the best this is it.
11-29-2003, 04:12 PM
the wildcard card wont help you with what you are doing... but would be nice to have :)
11-29-2003, 04:38 PM
11-29-2003, 05:28 PM
add one more level of confusion.
11-30-2003, 03:10 PM
Great... this is getting better by the posts! :'( :-/
12-01-2003, 08:19 PM
Speakers? Sacrilege! As MadCow states, they are called audio monitors, or studio monitors. I have Behringer Truth B2031 audio monitors. At under $500US, they are a great bang for the buck. They are qualified as mini-Mackies by some reviewers.
As for the Wildcat graphics card... like Zoom said, it's nice to have, but for video editing, it offers little or no performance gains at all. Wildcats are killer in 3D apps thought. Other then that, don't waste your money. ATI, nVidia, and Matrox all remain excellent products at a fraction of the cost of a Wildcat. All three offer good performance, quality and features in one form or another. I think it's really a matter of personal choice... unless you want 3 monitors (for added screen real estate), in which case only Matrox Parhelia can offer such a thing.
12-01-2003, 08:35 PM
unless you want 3 monitors (for added screen real estate), in which case only Matrox Parhelia can offer such a thing.
or else 2 Geforce 2 headed video cards :)
12-01-2003, 08:43 PM
True! But PCI video cards aren't that common too.
12-01-2003, 08:51 PM
not common, but they still make them... some nforce mobos even come with a video card built in.
12-23-2003, 05:47 PM
Hey Flinstone.. do you feed your Behringers straight from the soundcard via the miniplug, or do you use an intermediate digital pre-amp?
12-24-2003, 08:24 AM
i run a pair of rolands ds90's and pair of ds50's studio monitors
but my film (by film i mean video) studio was built onto an audio studio.
12-24-2003, 08:47 AM
wow those rolands are exactly what I was looking for.. optical in right from the sound card sounds amazing.
Right now I got Digital out into Digital in on a reciever.. out to the minipods. Sounds great, but is a little complicated for what its worth.
12-24-2003, 09:06 AM
the sound replication is just amazing..(they do speaker modeling as well, so you can replicate any listening environment with them to hear what it would sound like played back on different systems..) when i first went to check them out i was just blown away, and had to have them. pricey but worth it once you hear them.. and they get loud.. i mean LOUD. i have to keep them at a real low .. they have just about any connection you could ask for digital or analog, but i just use the optical, and coax digtial ins. then i mix all the sound on my audio gear. it was nice to get rid of some of the extra cables behind my setup and go down to a couple digitals.. i swear even now if you tied all the cables together you could lasso the moon.
only downside is that i have them sitting close enough on at the workstation to the floor where for a while my little daughters favorite thing to do in that room was to push in the rubber foam dome on the tweeters.. it was sorta funny, but needles to say i didnt let that go on too long.
12-27-2003, 11:15 PM
Hmmmm...monitors now that is my bag as my day job is to run my studio. Zoom, with all the good advice you've given stay away from the Rolands at all costs...they suck. Goto VS-planet.com and read what some of the die hard roland guys say about them. I sent them back after one day (sorry imaloser). My main room monitors are a pair of ADAM Audio P11-A, and in my nuendo room the Mackie hr824's with the sub and probably overkill for most guys in here. The Alesis M1 Active Mk2 are awesome at only 399...i can't believe the Roland's are still around.
12-27-2003, 11:46 PM
yeah... my pods are so cute though :)
funny I have never heard a bad thing about the Mackie.. must mean something.
12-28-2003, 12:10 PM
Yeah, I had the event 20/20bas before I could afford the mackies...when I received the mackies I could not believe the difference. I really like the smaller ones too...i think hr624...then I got the Adams...that's a whole 'nother beautiful experience.
12-28-2003, 01:50 PM
Ah, Viewsonic: the choice of Zoom.
12-28-2003, 01:55 PM
ha ha.. yeah they made a pro series last year that was very good That I picked up.. 650:1 contrast etc.. My second TFT is a KDS 15" piece of shit that I wouldnt recommend to anyone.
12-29-2003, 05:18 AM
now now..they dont suck. lol! i have run a recording studio for years as well. its just that everyone is used to moitoring sound with that warmth that analog brings.. digital to some sounds a bit tinney..in essence people arent used to hearing such clear sound through a pure digital connection . anyway you can connect them any way you want to , and in the end you can model the type of sound you like from a monitor. ive only heard good things about the new rolands since the day they came out.. of course thats marketing as well, but in the end people have to decide for themselves. i love them.. its not really a fair review to say they suck because you personally dont like them, or may have had a bad experience with them. and i wouldnt doubt that tube amp loving roland fans have issues adapting to newer technology.. same as old film lovers saying our little video cameras suck. but roland isnt known for making sucky audio monitors. these new monitors are built on the same award winning designs as their older ones, and just bring the power of digital to the table as well.
12-29-2003, 09:04 AM
Thats why people still listen to Vinyl.
12-29-2003, 09:32 AM
..also why many people prefer the sound of solid state tube amps, or microphones compared to new high fidelity digital equipment.. its the same old vs new thing.. having the ability to connect either way, and digitally model any listening environment sort of negates this issue imho though. should just do a search online for them, and read all the reviews out there. youll find that most are VERY good.