A video editor’s secret weapon to a smooth video editing is a robust computer. Without the appropriate computer specs, the editing process might sabotage your productivity. So before you even get started with your video production, you must consider the kind of PC you have. And in this guide, we’ll allow you to decide which your best computer for video production is. While you’re exploring this form of media, check out other courses that you can take online to grow your skills.
The hardware requirements for video production
Since video editing requires powerful features that a regular computer cannot perform, you have to look out for these aspects to match your needs.
The CPU is the most crucial aspect to consider. You may want to stick with the latest generations of CPUs for optimal performance. Your best bets include those with quad-hexa-octa-core CPUs for a smooth run regardless of the load being processed. The better CPU you get, the better performance you’ll get. The CPU impacts playing footage, rendering effects, exporting video, and encoding and transcoding clips.
An ample amount of RAM is crucial to help you handle heavy editing tasks. This is one of the instances that quantity should shine over quality since the more RAM you have, the more robust your computer is. As a rule of thumb, look for a computer with at least 8GB, but 16GB and above would be best.
The RAM keeps your computer working. This implies that you should settle for a higher RAM if you want optimal performance.
To guide you, here’s a quick cheat sheet in finding the right RAM for you:
- 4GB: No, you’ll need an upgrade.
- 8GB: Good enough to handle small projects and resolutions of up to 1080p
- 16GB: This should be the minimum RAM you should consider getting. It will enable you to edit 4k videos.
- 32GB: If you run other programs like Photoshop and After Effects as you edit 4k videos, 32GB is the ideal RAM.
- 64GB: The ideal RAM when editing 4k videos.
- 128GB: If budget is not a restriction, why not go for the most optimal RAM? It allows you to keep multiple tabs open while running your video editing programs.
Another important aspect to check is the graphics processing unit (GPU) of the computer. Most commonly known as the graphics card or video card, GPU renders images, videos, and animations for display. Some of the dedicated graphics cards you can check out include the series of NVIDIA or AMD. GPU holds more power than your CPU.
A GPU helps in optimal live playback of GPU-accelerate effects and provides faster RAM previews in heavy programs.
In choosing your GPU memory, the ideal would be 4 to 8GB. Go higher if you’ll edit 4k footages.
HDD may soon not cut it in video production unless it is on the faster side. SSD is the new norm in computer ROM storage since it is much faster, reliable, and robust for heavy processes. With SSD’s wide availability in the market, you can get one that’s reasonably priced for adequate capacity.
Here’s a quick comparison to the three commonly used storage drives in computers:
- HDD: HDD comes in up to 15TB of storage. They have relatively slow transfer speeds of 100-200 MB/s.
- SATA SSD: SATA SSD comes in a smaller size of up to 4TB. However, they have faster transfer speeds of 400-600MB/S as compared to the traditional HDD.
- NVMe SSD: This is the most expensive storage in the market right now. It has similar storage to SATA SSD of up to 4TB but with a much faster speed.
Video production requires the necessary import and export of files to and from external devices. And what will help you speed up the transfers is by having a computer that supports USB 3.0 or higher. USB 2.0 is excruciatingly slow for heavy file transfers, so any higher generation will serve you well. Not to mention, USB 3.1 Gen 2 has a data rate of 10 GB/s.
The technology paves the way for continuous updates, so you need a computer that can keep up with it even after years. Whether for software or hardware, your computer must be compatible with expandability that can further increase your productivity. Some aspects that can render upgrades include more RAM storage, better HDD/SDD, and CPU/GPU.
Video editing is a quite resource-consuming process. If you are not satisfied with the system, one route is to go for a custom build pc. This not only provides exactly which resource you need but also flexibility to upgrade easily in the future too. If you are stuck between compatibility then you can take help from sites like thepcbuilders. Hope this will solve your issue related to video editing & will make rendering much faster for your new video editing task.
The best computers for video editing
Now that you know what to look for on a computer, here are the popular options to check out in finding your best computer for video production.
1. Apple iMac Pro
CPU: Intel Xeon W | GPU: AMD Vega 64 (16GB HBM2 RAM) | RAM: 128GB | Turbo Boost: up to 4.5GHz | Storage: 1TB-4TB SSD | Ports: 10GB Ethernet, 3.5mm headphone jack, SDXC card slot, 4 full-size USB 3.0, and 4 Thunderbolt 3.0 USB-C
Starting this list with the best among the best, the Apple iMac Pro is considered the best PC for video editing in existence. But its incredible features and stellar performance come at a hefty price. Apple iMac Pro is one of the most powerful iMacs out there, so you can expect that it costs way more above other options.
However, if you don’t mind shelling out loads of money for your rig, this is the one to get. With its Intel Xeon CPU and AMD Vega GPU, your editing and rendering will run smoothly. It features a 27.5 in 5K resolution, which delivers up to one billion colors and is 43% brighter than any other Apple Retina monitors.
All in all, if budget is not an issue, iMac Pro offers the best features in one single rig.
2. Microsoft Surface Studio 2
CPU: Intel Core i7-7820HQ | GPU: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060-1070 | RAM: 16GB-32GB | Storage: 1TB-2TB SSD | Ports: GB Ethernet, 3.5 mm headphone jack, 4 USB 3.0, SD Card Slot, and 1 USB-C
Not a fan of Mac? Microsoft Surface Studio 2 is the best Windows PC to compete with the Apple iMac Pro. This powerful rig boasts impressive graphics, a high-resolution touch-sensitive display, and a 28-inch display (4500 x 3000). It has the PixelSense display with the Surface Pen support, allowing drag-and-drop function with the pen, finger, or mouse.
While this rig is quite expensive, you get to enjoy a solid-state computer that can handle heavy video production.
3. Apple iMac 27-inch with Retina Display (2020)
CPU: 10th-Generation Intel Core i5-i9 | GPU: AMD Radeon Pro 5300-Radeon Pro5700 XT | RAM: 8GB-128GB 2666MHz DDR4 | Storage: 256GB-8TB SSD | Ports: GB Ethernet, 4 USB-A, 2 Thunderbolt USB 3.0, and SDXC
iMacs are frontrunners in the best video editing PCs in the market. You can almost never go wrong with any iMac workstation. But the 27-inch iMac is superior in Apple’s array of robust computers for heavy functions such as video production.
It features a 5K Retina display (5120×2880), which is superbly brilliant for video editing. With its improvements from the iMac 27-inch’s predecessor, you can enjoy a smoother, slicker, and more powerful all-in-one PC for your editing tasks.
4. Corsair One Pro i180
CPU: Intel Core i9-9920X | GPU: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Ti | RAM: 32 GB | Storage: 960GB SSD, 2TB HHD | Ports: GB Ethernet, 3 USB 3.1 Gen 1, HDMI 2.0, PS/2, 2 USB 2.0, USB 3.1 Gen 2 TYpe-C, and USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-A
Another huge player in video editing is the Corsair One Pro i180, which features a sleek and lovely design yet packs a powerful processor. With its impressive set of hardware, you can never go wrong with this PC. Not to mention, it allows you to upgrade some components yourself, allowing you to keep up-to-date with upgrades whatever year you are in.
5. Apple Mac mini 2020 (M1 chip)
CPU: Apple M1 chip (8-core) | GPU: Integrated 8-core | RAM: 8GB-64GB | Storage: 256GB-2TB SSD | Ports: 4 expansion ports for USB or Thunderbolt external storage, HDMI 2.0
Mac mini 2020 M is a fairly cheap yet powerful PC that offers portability and immense power. It now has the all-new M1 chip, which holds up to 3x faster CPU performance, up to 6x faster graphics speed, and up to 15x faster machine learning performance.
It is the smallest Mac computer that packs excellent features that can handle video editing. The compact Mac Mini is applauded for its aesthetic look, expandability, and improved specs from its predecessor.
6. Lenovo Yoga A940
CPU: 8th Generation Intel Core i7-8700 | GPU: AMD Radeon RX 560 4GB | RAM: 32GB DDR4 2666 MHz | Storage: 1TB 5400 RPM + 256 GB PCIe SSD | Ports: Intel Thunderbolt USB-C, USB 3.1, 4 USB 3.0, 3-in-1 card reader, LAN, and HDMI
If you are on the lookout for an excellent iMac alternative, this is a superb choice. Lenovo Yoga A940 is a slick computer for video production that even features an IPS Multi-Touchscreen. It comes with a stylus to aid you in your functions.
Lenovo Yoga A940’s all-in-one design packs in excellent features at a more impressive price tag. Although some may argue that 8th-generation chips and Radeon 560 GPUs are getting dated, they still have a lot more to offer than an average computer. It even has Dolby Atmos speakers, a bonus when editing videos with Dolby’s 3D audio.
7. HP Envy 795
CPU: 3.5 GHz six-core Intel Core i7 – 3.3GHZ 10-core Intel i9 | RAM: 8GB-64GB | Storage: 1TB 7200 rpm SATA | Ports: HDMI Ethernet, 6 USB 3.0, 2 USB 2.0, DVI and SDXC
Another Windows frontrunner for the best computer for video production is the HP Envy 795. This sleek desktop PC packs in incredible features that’ perfect for mid-range video editing. It is a budget-friendly pick which starts at only $700 for the i5 processor.
The latest version of HP Envy 795 has some serious upgrades made. With its 9th-generation core i7+9700 processor, this can handle a good load of video editing. Lastly, its RAM is expandable, which you can tinker whenever you feel the need to.
Those are just seven of the best computers for video production in the market as of today. Regardless of budget, you can find the perfect workstation to aid you in your video editing tasks. Take your videography to next level with drones. See these 10 Drone Videography Tips for Beginners.
Need more guidance in nailing your journey to being a successful video editor? Here are some well-suggested online courses to take with you:
- Video Production Bootcamp
- Complete Filmmaker Guide: Become an Incredible Video Creator
- How to Make Your Digital Video Look Like Film
If you want to learn how to produce films, go through the 7 steps required in film production.
Top video editing software
In choosing the right hardware requirements for your computer, you must also consider the capacity of the video editing software you’ll use.
There are several video editing software available online for free download like the ones in this article. However, if you want to maximize the full features that are more suitable for professional editing, you might consider getting paid tools. They are great investments that guarantee you seamless, reliable, and action-packed features for your editing needs.
Here are some of the most popular video editing software to pair with your computer:
1. Adobe Premiere Pro
Every video editor—beginners to the most experienced—are familiar with the Adobe Premiere Pro. It is considered the best among all editing software in the market, catering to both PC and Mac users. It is the industry-standard that’s packed with everything you need in video editing. You can master Adobe Premiere Pro with this comprehensive online course.
2. Final Cut Pro
Final Cut Pro is a Mac exclusive software
that boasts powerful video editing features. It sits closely next to the Adobe Premiere Pro as the champion in video editing.
3. Adobe Premiere Elements
If Premiere Pro is a little too complicated for your beginner skills, then Adobe Premiere Elements will be a great alternative. It has similar features to Premiere Pro but with a less intimidating interface. Thus, it guarantees you a seamless learning curve.
Filmora is Wondershare’s video editing tool that positions itself in the market as one of the cheapest. At a low cost, you can enjoy the amazing features of the tool. It is simple to use, which suits beginner and video editing enthusiasts.
5. CyberLink PowerDirector 365
The CyberLink PowerDirector 365 is another low-cost video editing software that offers an array of incredible editing features. It’s an excellent alternative for Premiere Pro if you want similar tools yet with a lower price range.
Ready to pick up your perfect video editing PC? Click here to get started.