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Back to PC
Over the last several years Apple has staged a revolution on the world of multimedia computing. Today Apple computers dominate the world of video production, partially because of their usability and partially because of some of the software that has become exclusive for them. Final Cut Studio has come out as one of the fastest growing video editing and post-production suites, and you are not going to be able to run this on Windows without a major change in your system. For those that are working on PCs they have found that they have to carve out their own niche and create a workflow that makes sense for your system. Here is a look at video editing and production for Windows systems.
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Video editing and production for Windows is not always as difficult as it sounds, but the video editing software is a lot more difficult to deal with than the production software. Many new video editors are used to Final Cut Pro and the associated programs, so it is difficult to make them transition over. For PC users there is one professional alternative to Final Cut Pro that truly dominates, and that is Avid Media Composer. Avid started out as the first non-linear video editing system available in the switch to digital editing and it still is the mainstay of the feature film industry. The difficulty with using Avid is that the cost is substantially more than Final Cut Studio if you do not buy the student version, and that is just for the base program.
What is more important about video editing and production for Windows is that you will have to round out your post-production workflow with the Adobe Creative Suite Production Premium package. This will give you tools like Adobe After Effects, Adobe Photoshop, and Adobe Encore, which are so important in the industry that you will have to have them no matter what system you are running. If you do not need a powerhouse editing program then you can simply use Adobe Premiere as part of the CS5, and this is almost just as good as using Final Cut Pro or Avid Media Composer and you will not have to drop the extra cash.
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Pre-Production and Active Production Software
In general, much of the pre-production and production software that you will use will have option both for Mac and PC. For script writing Final Draft is still an industry standard, and Celtx offers a great alternative for free. Movie Magic Budgeting will still be great for running your production budgets, Gorilla Professional will help take your entire pre-production process through, and the rest of the office related programs are either Windows native or Windows compatible. When you get to these software packages the prospect of video editing and production for Windows is not near as difficult, as long as the operating system interface is fine.
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The choice between a Mac and Windows based PC is a difficult one and is really based largely on preferences. The comparison is one of options versus price. Mac computers are really easier to work with in terms of video production because they often come as a single package, they have software that is exclusive, and the displays are often well built for this type of monitoring. On the other side, PCs are often much cheaper and you can build a comparably powerful machine for less money. The choice for your professional system needs to be around whether or not your feel as though the options for video editing and production for Windows are great enough.
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Photos: www.avid.com, www.adobe.com.
Source: author's own experience.