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Cheap laptop for home movie editing vs. cheap desktop

I'm looking to get a new laptop or desktop for $500 or less to do basic home video editing (not HD, by the way). I'm not going to play games, watch DVDs or Blurays, or anything that is memory or speed intensive.

Here are the specs on an HP currently on sale for $479:

Processor Intel Pentium Dual-Core Mobile Processor T3400
Memory (RAM) 3GB
Memory Type DDR2
Memory Expandable to 3GB
Hard Drive Size 250GB
Hard Drive Type SATA
Optical Drive SuperMulti 8X DVD

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more info

In reply to: Cheap laptop for home movie editing vs. cheap desktop

BTW, by "basic video editing" I mean splicing segments together, adding basic titles, and adding background music.

I may also use it for slide shows.

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some specs are questionable

In reply to: Cheap laptop for home movie editing vs. cheap desktop

I would highly recommend staying away from Pentiums
try to look for Core or Phenom CPU instead
and while it's not totally necessary you might want a basic ATi or nVIDIA graphics card anyway, especially since their UVD and PureVideo, respectively, capabilities can come in useful

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Try checking this out

I?d say maybe take a look at this site provided by Microsoft. You can change the sliders to adjust for things like price, screen size, hard drive, etc. If anything it might let you know what?s out there at the pricepoint you?re looking for.

http://www.microsoft.com/windows/windows-laptop-scout/

Cheers,
Ron
Windows Outreach Team

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Better off with a desktop?

In reply to: Try checking this out

Thanks for the link. According to the laptop scout I'll need to budget at least $700.

Maybe a desktop is the way to go.

The research I've done so far has me taking a closer look at the following:

1. processor speed-- How much do I need? At least 2 GHz?

2. data ports-- I guess I should have at least a couple of USB ports and a Firewire port, n'est-ce pas?

3. DVD burner speed-- 8x? 16x?

4. video card-- I'm clueless here.

I don't need Internet connectivity, so I can forget about a modem, wireless connectivity, webcams, etc.

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Either way...

In reply to: Better off with a desktop?

Sure thing.

Proc speed ? I think you?re going to want something at least 1GHz or faster (I?d aim at the higher end, personally).

Ports ? I?d take USB over Firewire, but that?s just because I don?t currently use anything that requires Firewire. I think you?ll find that most laptops these days have between 2-4 ports. If it?s a huge difference in price, you can always pick up a hub (powered or unpowered) for pretty cheap.

DVD burner ? 8x or 16x is really a price choice here for you. If you want to spend that extra money for a 2x increase in burning speed, then go for it.

Video card ? To be quite honest, I don?t do a ton of gaming on my laptop, but I went for the upgraded video card when I bought my Dell XPS M1330. It?s nothing crazy, but it?s a bump up from the baseline.

One thing to keep in mind, as you?re doing this are the new specs for Windows 7:
? 1 GHz or faster 32-bit (x86) or 64-bit (x64) processor
? 1 GB RAM (32-bit) / 2 GB RAM (64-bit)
? 16 GB available disk space (32-bit) / 20 GB (64-bit)
? DirectX 9 graphics processor with WDDM 1.0 or higher driver

You can get more info and download the RC here: http://www.microsoft.com/windows/windows-7/download.aspx

Cheers,
Ron
Windows Outreach Team

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Agree

In reply to: Either way...

Video/Graphic
On video card, get 1 which is at least a 64MB DDR2 PCIe video card on it, else if you have more budget, 128MB-256MB DDR2 PCIe video card.

Memory:
But as you are doing even basic video editing, memory is still an important factor to consider as rendering video requires them alot (besides the processor), thus, you still need to consider having as much as possible.

Harddisk:
a 250GB and above storage capacity is good, as some video-editors stores temporary files which they will render/process (as cache files), thus, this hardware is still "The bigger the better".

Anyway, Pentium family is post-P1 family onwards, thus, still Duo-core, Core2, and the rest are still belong categorically to the pentium family. (given Rambus,celeron, P-M of the P4 family are single core, Non-rambus processor with HTT are duo-core as they have added instruction sets to run as duo-core yet still classified as being P4 family)

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Am I missing anything?

In reply to: Agree

Here's what I've found that looks like the most bag for my buck. The Vista Home Premium is 64-bit so I'll be able to take full advantage of the 7 GB of RAM, right?

Refurbished - HP a6763w Refurbished Desktop

Operating System - Genuine Windows Vista

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Just a Reminder...

In reply to: Am I missing anything?

Don't forget to factor in the cost of a monitor (unless it is included). : )

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Good call!

In reply to: Just a Reminder...

I will be the first to admit I bought a computer a couple years ago and overlooked the monitor... Fail for me.

Cheers,
Ron
Windows Outreach Team

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CRT?

In reply to: Just a Reminder...

I plan on using my ancient 50 lb. CRT monitor until I can find an LCD I like. I wonder if there are even drivers for my antique on the HP 6700 series.

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