General Question

bmhit1991's avatar

Hi-Def/Hi-Res screen required for HD editing?

Asked by bmhit1991 (246points) September 12th, 2008

I’m planning on edit HD stuff on an iMac. But the iMac screen isn’t hi-def. I plan on getting an 8800 graphics card, but do I really need an HD or Hi-Res screen to edit the HD footage?

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5 Answers

RandomMrdan's avatar

the 24in imac will give you a resolution of 1920×1200 which is greater than Blu Ray/1080P. The 20in models are 1680×1050, which really isn’t too far off. If you wanted to, you could attach a 24in monitor to the iMac and run video to it’s fullest resolution on it.

bmhit1991's avatar

awesome! thank you!

battlemarz's avatar

1080P implies 1920×1080 resolution, if you have a monitor that is 1920×1200 as Random said then you will be able to edit at full resolution. But if you were wondering if you need some special type of “hi-def” monitor, such a thing really doesn’t exist.

RandomMrdan's avatar

well, technically my sony bravia supports the 1920×1080 resolution…so I guess it would constitute itself as a high-def monitor since it can be used as a monitor, and I do use it as a monitor…but yeah, I know what you’re saying.

sndfreQ's avatar

Remember that the iMac’s display will approximate the color gamma and contrast of most off-the-shelf ATSC HD displays (in system prefs/displays you can set the color gamma and white balance), but that also when cutting you’re only seeing a thumbnail-sized low resolution version of the HD Video, which is acceptable through the entire process up to the color balancing/correcting part. To truly see this, you would need to be able to view the content through an externally connected video upconverter (connect to FireWire port), and Black Magic and AJA (and Matrox) are all companies that sell that external box. You would then need to connect it to a quality Reference Display (pro specification) as with Panasonic or Sony’s pro Broadcast lines, to accurately measure the high-res output.

Even then, I would check to see if the iMac can even support that kind of output. You may just be delaying the inevitable-upgrading to a Mac Pro (tower), in which case, you could look to the PCIe HD video card options of what I mentioned above.

With all of this, I’m assuming you’re referring to Professional quality production; if you’re just shooting with a consumer-level HDV or AVCHD camera, none of that will really matter. In the end, if you’re not authoring onto Blu-Ray (no one on a home platform can yet-the software and hardware are not quite there yet), your content is still being dithered down to 480p DVD NTSC….it’s analagous to recording in a million dollar studio only to make your final master burn onto a CD-Audio versus a DVD-Audio (if you’ve ever heard a DVD-A you would appreciate the comparison).

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