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Adobe Premiere Pro Laptops

We have a variety of laptops that will work with Adobe Premiere Pro.  All our laptops have nVidia graphics cards which will power the Adobe Mercury Playback Engine, with the desktop processor laptops having graphics cards which are practically the same as those found in desktop machines.

You can buy one licence of the Adobe software and use it on both your laptop and desktop machine.  The terms of the licence are that you should not use both machines at the same time.  If you are planning to use both your desktop and laptop at the same time you should buy two licences.  We can either supply the software ourselves or install software that you already own and test with the laptop.

There are a variety of different video devices which will work with our laptops.

Blackmagic USB3 devices

Blackmagic have a range of devices which connect via USB3.  These give you SVIDEO, composite, HDMI and SDI in and out, with the connections varying depending on the device.  The USB3 devices are very particular about the type of USB3 chipset used and do not work on a great many laptops. The Blackmagic UBS3 devices top resolution is 1920x1080 50P (and only on one model)You can read more about the Blackmagic USB3 devices here: http://www.dvc.uk.com/acatalog/Black_Magic_capture_cards.html.

Blackmagic Thunderbolt devices

The Blackmagic Thunderbolt devices will only work on systems with Thunderbolt. They will work on the HP ZBook and also on the desktop processor laptops. The desktop processor laptops have a Thunderbolt 3 connection, and, with the exception of the UltraStudio 4K Extreme 3, the Blackmagic devices only have a Thunderbolt 2 connection. However, you can use these devices using an inexpensive Thunderbolt 3 - Thunderbolt 2 converter. This converter also lets you use a Thunderbolt - FireWire adaptor on the laptops so you can capture DV and HDV footage..

Output using the graphic card

You can use the graphic card inside the laptop to view the picture full screen on a monitor or TV.  This is never as good as using a video I.O. device but with graphic cards improving is slowly getting better.  With our top laptops which have a display port connector you can output 4K footage at 50P & 60P which is the highest resolution you are likely to need for video at the moment.  Laptops with just HDMI sockets will be able to manage 4K at 25P/30P.  Of course, they can also output at lower resolutions like HD.  Premiere Pro is one of the best programs for using the graphics card to output video with very little "tearing" of the picture.

Windows 10, or Windows 7?

Windows 8 start screen Microsoft have stopped supplying Windows 7 and 8, so you will probably automatically choose to have Windows 10 installed on a new machine. There are actually many good reasons to do this. If you really do not like Windows 10 we can install a copy of Windows 7 or Windows 8 that you already own on a computer provided the computer on which it is currently installed is no longer used.

Why you should choose to Windows 10?

The main reasons you may want to choose Windows 10 are:

  • You want to stay on the most up to date operating system, with support carrying on into the foreseeable future. Microsoft support for adding new features to Windows 7 ended on 13th January 2015 and the end of security patches is scheduled for 14th January 2020. Windows 8 is set for the end of new features on 9th January 2018 and for security patches on 10th January 2023.
  • Windows 10 supports some features on Intel processors which are not supported on older operating systems. Presently this is not too important but with new processors released every year there will be more features on the new processor that only work on Windows 10.
  • If you log in with a Microsoft ID you can sync data between other machines with the same ID and even sync project files if you save backups on your Microsoft "Onedrive".
  • You get access to a lot of extra apps using Windows 10, which now includes Candy Crush and many other ways to stop you actually doing any work.
  • If using a high resolution screen (one which is bigger than 1920x1080 pixels, like a UHD screen) the text in many programs becomes so small it is unusable. Windows 10 handles these higher resolutions screens a lot better than Windows 7.
  • The Windows back up is considerably better than it was in Windows 7 as it allows you to set a folder to do an incremental backup of your files rather than the entire folder. If set up properly this can be very useful.

Windows 10 disadvantages

The major draw back to using Windows 7 will be that as it is so new some older programs and devices may not work on it.  Adobe Premiere Pro CC2015 has been validated to work on Windows 10, none of the other programs currently have been.  Grass Valley have said they will produce an update in October 2015.  Avid will have Windows 10 support soon.  As we write this document we have used both of these programs on Windows 10 without issues, but as they are not yet properly validated there may be some issues we have not come across.  Sony Vegas Pro 13 and DaVinci Resolve are both validated for Windows 10.

Windows 7 and Windows 8 are tried and tested and all the software and hardware we use has been used on them for a year or so - so we know the pitfalls and the problems. 

Some devices may not work on Windows 10

Hardware needs drivers for Windows 10 to work properly.  In many cases these are probably be easily available or the Windows 8 drivers will hopefully work but since video editing makes the computer work as hard as possible you ideally want drivers specifically written for Windows 10.  Blackmagic have produced Windows 10 drivers, although these are only validated to work with recent versions of the various editing programs - Avid MC8, Premiere Pro CC2014 & 2015 etc..  Matrox have not produced Windows 10 drivers and have said they are not going to do so.

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