PC Systems  - for video editing, etc

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We are no longer building custom PC systems.
After building around 900 systems since PC video editing took off in the 1990s, it was time to wind down this side of the business in 2016. We can still offer some service and support, both for our own systems and PCs in general, and are well placed to advise  - in a consultancy capacity - on what will give you the best value for money for this type of application.

Intel i7 PC system for video editing
PC System requirements for Adobe CS5/6 & CC

A lot of earlier video editing systems were built around the requirements of video I/O devices like those from Matrox  and Blackmagic, but with the advent of camcorders using memory cards, and more powerful CPUs & GPUs, the need for I/O cards with hardware effects processing has diminished.

With the release of software like Adobe's Premiere Pro CS5/6 & CC , with their full 64 bit processing and direct usage of a high-end graphics card, "software-only" editing is now a reality for all levels of work.

Whatever software you choose for video editing, a current-generation CPU is advised, and the Intel i-series CPUs offer a good balance between cost and performance. New for 2013 were the four thousand series CPUs, updated again in 2015 with the six thousand series and the Intel Z170 motherboard chipset, whilst the Skt 2011 series of CPUs on the X99 chipset have the advantage of a quad-channel RAM bus and a minimum of six physical cores (12 with hyperthreading)

If you are moving to Adobe Premiere Pro CS6, and are working in HD, then I would recommend an i7-based system, since it's the CPU that does the work of decoding the video files. In SD that load is pretty trivial, so any of the sample systems will handle it. In HD, not only are the frame sizes bigger, but the compression tends to be more complex too, so typically 4x-8x as much processing power is needed.

The specs of the sample video editing systems on this page are based around the needs of Adobe Premiere Pro CS5/6 & CC editions, using the latest Intel i-series CPUs, which we feel give good value for money.

Suggested specs for Adobe CS5/6 & CC-ready PC systems

Intel-chipset PCI-Express motherboard with on-board SATA, audio, USB2/3 & gigabit ethernet, 600/650W PSU (750W+ on hex-core X99 systems) & 120/140mm quiet fans, 1TB + 2 or 3TB SATA 600 hard drives (for system & video), dual layer DVD+/-R/RW, Nvidia GTX series multi-output PCI-Express graphics card, Windows 7 (or 8.1) Pro 64bit O/S

CPU Clock Speed Cores/Threads M/B Chipset Graphics card RAM Price
i5 4590 3.3GHz 4 / 4 Z97 2GB GTX 750 8GB  
i5 4690K 3.5GHz 4 / 4 Z97 2GB GTX 750 Ti 8GB  
i7 6700K 4.0GHz 4 / 8 Z170 2GB GTX 960 16GB  
i7 5820K 3.3GHz 6 / 12 X99 2GB GTX 960 16GB  
i7 5930K 3.5GHz 6 / 12 X99 4GB GTX 970 32GB  
The Nvidia GTX 470 & 570 are the entry-level, fully-validated GPUs for Adobe CS5.5, but other (Nvidia) chipsets can be used. Both those early models have been phased out, hence the inclusion of other current Cuda-enabled models from the GTX range.

Editor's Keyboard for Premiere Pro
Editing Keyboards available for Avid, Edius & Premiere Pro

Matrox RT.X2 PC edting system from ZEN Computer Services

A Premiere-based  editing system with dual 23" LCD PC & TV monitors

Monitors Options Available      Video editing system demos available in Manchester     

What we're about . . .      ZEN is not a traditional Audio-Visual dealer who started selling computers, nor is it a computer shop that also sells video products. You won't get any salesmen giving you the "hard-sell" when you call, just straightforward advice and information - which for some callers is the knowledge that they don't need to buy whatever it is they thought they needed! Above all you'll be dealing with someone with a wide range of experience and knowledge of both PCs and video production. We're not the biggest, nor necessarily the cheapest, but we are one of the longest established computer/video specialists in the UK.

Company history . . .      ZEN was started in the 1980s by Martin Kay, then working for ITV at Granada's Manchester studios, who built his first 6502-based computer in 1979 from an Ohio Scientific kit, bought in the USA whilst working as a Sound Recordist on a film shoot for World In Action. With the advent of the Amiga, which could be gen-locked to a video source, Martin started writing a variety of video-related software. This included subtitling & tele-prompting, ident clocks, scoring software for sports & gameshows, and specialist software to mimic other computer displays for use in TV film dramas like Cracker, Prime Suspect and A Touch of Frost. Martin left Granada in 1993 to concentrate on his computer-video activities with ZEN, following a natural path into non-linear editing systems, for many years the main business activity, although he still maintains an active interest in video production.

ZEN - Video Editing in Manchester Video Editing Sales - Phone 0161 736 5300 Copyright 2020 Zen Computer Services.
All rights reserved. E&OE
Revised: 23 December, 2020