Configuring your workstation

HP Releases New Z1

On January 6, 2014, HP announced a new version of their Z1 all-in-one workstation. I love the first version because it's beautiful, powerful and field upgradeable; but it lacked high-speed external connectivity, so your capture options for live produ...

Buyer's Guide: Windows Production Stations

If you’re an editor or a compressionist, your livelihood depends upon the stability and throughput of your production station. If you plan to buy a new Windows workstation in 2012, here are some thoughts to consider when choosing and configuring your system.

Buyer's Guide: Windows Production Stations

From the operating system to the graphics card, here is all you need to know to buy the best workstation for your budget.

I'm Rosie's Dad (on the power of video)

I'm at a conference in Las Vegas visiting with the HP workstation group. Great folks, nice hotel, fun meetings, Cirque de Soleil tonight. So all the workstation VPs make their sweep of the dining room last night, saying hello, getting some face tim...

HP EliteBook 8760W - the Ideal Mobile CS 5.5 Workstation

Depending upon the project type, rendering with GPU-acceleration in Creative Suite 5.5 can reduce rendering time by up to 92% over CPU-only rendering. Since NVIDIA's CUDA technology is the only GPU that currently accelerates rendering in the Adobe Media Encoder and Premiere Pro, buying a notebook without NVIDIA hardware for CS5.5 production is a huge mistake.

If you're in the market for such a notebook, the HP 8760w is a dream machine that performs as well or better than a single CPU desktop workstation. If you need an external eSATA drive for production work, the Akitio Taurus Mini Super-S LCM should be on your short list.

What Makes a Workstation a Workstation - My visit to HP

hp logo.pngHP invited a bunch of journalists, myself included, out to visit their facility in Fort Collins, CO, the headquarters for workstation design, support and marketing. Beyond the desire to meet and greet friends old and new, I had one goal – to learn what makes a computer a workstation.

If you click over the the main story, you'll see that I learned a whole lot more.

Apple Mac Pro - How Much Memory is Enough?

In the first edition of this month’s Affordable HD enewsletter, we keep the focus on the Apple Mac Pro, specifically analyzing the optimal memory configurations for editing and encoding with Apple Final Cut Studio, Adobe Creative Suite 4, and Telestream Episode Engine. I looked at several scenarios.

HP Z800 Workstation With Intel Westmere Dual Six-Core Processor Review

z8w1.jpgIn 2009, Intel launched its Nehalem line of workstations, which started with three models: the low-end Z400, the mid-range Z600, and the high-end Z800; later it was supplemented by the entry-level Z200. I had a look at the Z400, a single CPU quad-core, and the Z800, a dual-processor, quad-core system. Now HP is updating its workstation line to incorporate Intel's new Westmere processor, which uses 32nm manufacturing technology to enable six cores on each CPU. HP sent me one of the first dual-processor six-core Z800 systems off the line, and I had about 2 days to run it through its paces for various digital video-processing tasks. 

My test system shipped with two 3.33GHz X5680 Xeon processors, with 24GB of RAM running the 64-bit version of Windows 7, which I like heaps better than Vista. The graphics card was an NVIDIA Quadro FX 4800 with 1.5GB of dedicated memory and access to 3.5GB more system memory. With a 15K 150GB system drive and 1TB video drive, the total system price was a little more than $12,000, though Z800 prices start at $1,799.

Windows 7 performance for Premiere Pro and Vegas

If you're a Premiere Pro or Vegas editor, and you're thinking about purchasing a new system with Windows 7, or upgrading to the new Microsoft OS on a current system, you might want to check out an article that I wrote for Millimeter/Digital Content P...

Windows 7 Performance for Streaming Encoding

puget.jpgA Windows 7 upgrade can cost more than $300 for the software alone -- is it worth it if you're a streaming producer looking to shave encoding times? Well, that's what I detail in this article.

By way of background, I had a great testbed for this - a dual processor, quad core 3.33 Ghz Xeon (Nehalem-based) computer from custom workstation manufacturer Puget Systems. Puget supplied the workstation with three system drives in an easily swappable drive bay so I could change operating systems in a matter of moments. Thus equipped, I loaded a number of programs on the three system drives, including Adobe Media Encoder, On 2 Flix Pro, Rhozet Carbon Coder, Sorenson Squeeze and Telestream Episode, and ran the encoding trials on each platform. Click over to the main article to see the results.