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Mac Mini Server for Dubbing - Pro Tools 9 + Video
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SoundWeavers
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9th May 2012
Old 9th May 2012
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Mac Mini Server for Dubbing - Pro Tools 9 + Video

Hello Post folks,

Quick question if anyone using Mac Mini Server for Dubbing sessions using Pro Tools 9? Can it handle h264 video (60 minute episodes)?

Thanks in advance.
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9th May 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SoundWeavers View Post
Hello Post folks,

Quick question if anyone using Mac Mini Server for Dubbing sessions using Pro Tools 9? Can it handle h264 video (60 minute episodes)?

Thanks in advance.
AFAIK. PT doesn't run on OSXserver
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Quote:
Originally Posted by apple-q View Post
AFAIK. PT doesn't run on OSXserver
LOL ya but he does not need to keep the server version of the software. He could move it to an external drive for safe keeping and install OSX Snow Leopard Or Lion himself.

In fact many people are doing it, there are a number of people right here on GS that are running Mac Mini i7 quad core servers for audio production work.
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I guess no one wants to shell out 4k for a Mac Pro model from 4 years ago.
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I have been using a Mac Mini Server with Protools 10 for the last 6 months. Mixed "I am Bruce Lee" and Real Housewives of Vancouver (both h264 video) with the system and it has been rock solid. Occasional DAE speed errors but nothing I didnt see on my old HD system, plus it is about 500 times faster than my old rig.
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h264

You can work with h264 files, but it's not recommended. convert it to a DV stream or an M.jpeg file. The files will be much bigger but, it will be much lighter for PT to play them.
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I am running one. It is brilliant. Handles h.264 video just fine with Pro Tools. Infact, the only thing it can't do for me is play youtube videos very smoothly. Though I think that has something to do with me doing a messy migration assistant job with multiple old users.. Hoping a fresh install will fix that, Pro Tools runs perfectly on it.

Editing and mixing 30 sec - 60 min shows with H.264 video and up to 60 tracks or so. Running with a Focusrite Saffire Pro 24 DSP. Very very happy camper!
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pisser View Post
I have been using a Mac Mini Server with Protools 10 for the last 6 months. Mixed "I am Bruce Lee" and Real Housewives of Vancouver (both h264 video) with the system and it has been rock solid. Occasional DAE speed errors but nothing I didnt see on my old HD system, plus it is about 500 times faster than my old rig.
Thanks so much for that info, this is very VERY HELPFUL!

More power to you!
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rafukyo View Post
You can work with h264 files, but it's not recommended. convert it to a DV stream or an M.jpeg file. The files will be much bigger but, it will be much lighter for PT to play them.
yeah about h.264

I don't want to mess with that the Clients send me. I asked them so many times, in so many different ways not to use h.264 but to no avail.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by matt82aust View Post
I am running one. It is brilliant. Handles h.264 video just fine with Pro Tools. Infact, the only thing it can't do for me is play youtube videos very smoothly. Though I think that has something to do with me doing a messy migration assistant job with multiple old users.. Hoping a fresh install will fix that, Pro Tools runs perfectly on it.

Editing and mixing 30 sec - 60 min shows with H.264 video and up to 60 tracks or so. Running with a Focusrite Saffire Pro 24 DSP. Very very happy camper!
Hi Matt, Thanks a lot for that solid user information! More power to you!
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Quote:
Originally Posted by apple-q View Post
AFAIK. PT doesn't run on OSXserver
PT10 runs really well on a Mac Mini Server. I just concluded a project where the Client did a live recording of a 2 hour show - 20 tracks, straight through (continuous program) using PT10 on Mac Mini Server.

Thus, my curiosity if I can use it for my video based projects, too - dubbing TV shows (60 min episodes)...

The Mac Mini Server as very quiet, too!
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Definitely convert your h264 files if you can, they are overly CPU intensive.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SoundWeavers View Post
The Mac Mini Server as very quiet, too!
I have one, and while it is quiet most of the time, it has random spurts of unbelievably loud fan noise when it gets really hot. The fan noise goes away after a minute or so but it can be painful if you are recording in the same room.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pedantic Sound View Post
Definitely convert your h264 files if you can, they are overly CPU intensive.
What do you use to convert/re-encode h264 .mov to DV?
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Out of curiosity - What is the difference between a Mac Mini and a Mac Mini Server?

As for converting - MPEGstreamclip (free and great)
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The macmini server loses out on the dedicated graphics card but gains a quad core i7 processor and a second internal hard drive. Besides e YouTube glitches I mentioned, I have not missed the graphics card.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SoundWeavers View Post
PT10 runs really well on a Mac Mini Server. I just concluded a project where the Client did a live recording of a 2 hour show - 20 tracks, straight through (continuous program) using PT10 on Mac Mini Server.

Thus, my curiosity if I can use it for my video based projects, too - dubbing TV shows (60 min episodes)...

The Mac Mini Server as very quiet, too!
I said OSXserver not MacMini Server to mention that PT won't run on the OS that comes with the machine server.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SoundWeavers View Post
What do you use to convert/re-encode h264 .mov to DV?
Just buy Compressor from the Mac App store... it's £30/$50 I think... that works fine.
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Mac Mini Lion server and PT10 here too.
I do weekly TV episodes, Photo JPEG or H.264 QT.
No more than 20 audiotracks, Hardly any plugins.

Never had a single glitch. Had this setup for 4 months.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lemix View Post
Mac Mini Lion server and PT10 here too.
I do weekly TV episodes, Photo JPEG or H.264 QT.
No more than 20 audiotracks, Hardly any plugins.

Never had a single glitch. Had this setup for 4 months.
thanks for the reply and info.
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Hey, interesting thread!
How do you guy handle video on the mac mini? To the second desktop or are there other possibilities?
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2nd desktop for me works fine. Native HDMI out lets you output straight to a LCD if you would like. Otherwise, firewire support is there for Canopus / Mojo, and thunderbolt lets you utilise Decklink if need be.

It really is quite a comprehensvile little system for small to medium sized television jobs.
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I could see how a Thunderbolt expansion chassis could possibly make a Mac Mini or an iMac a viable pro level system. The question I have is will Thunderbolt be able to handle 2 computer monitors plus an expansion chassis running a BM video card and 2 HDX cards.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Whitecat View Post
Just buy Compressor from the Mac App store... it's £30/$50 I think... that works fine.
quicktime 7 pro will do the trick . its in the utilities folder.
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I thought there was no separate server version of Lion now?

Anyway, besides the point as we're talking about hardware here, not OS version.

I wish you could get the quad and the separate graphics :(
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As far as I understand, Thunderbolt is essentially a PCIe on a cable, so it should be capable of handling anything, not just video or graphic cards.
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As well as the Mac Mini, how does the iMac stand up against other options in terms of running PT sessions, can an external chassis host a PT|HD system? I'm thinking when we get a second room to put an iMac with PT|HD Native.

Maybe this kit will mean your mac mini can sit in your rack with everything else:
Sonnet - xMac mini Server: PCIe 2.0 Expansion System/1U Rackmount Enclosure
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew Mottl View Post
Out of curiosity - What is the difference between a Mac Mini and a Mac Mini Server?

As for converting - MPEGstreamclip (free and great)
There are only a few differences. The MMS has 2 internal hard drives, MM only has one. The MM has a better graphics card, and as far as I know, the MMS is the only mac mini that has the quad core i7 processor.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ThisIsSka View Post
As well as the Mac Mini, how does the iMac stand up against other options in terms of running PT sessions, can an external chassis host a PT|HD system? I'm thinking when we get a second room to put an iMac with PT|HD Native.
The main advantage of the mini over the iMac is the ability to put the mini in a separate room from the monitor to reduce fan noise. The iMacs are more powerful however, but depending on the use, a mini would probably be a better (cheaper) option. They can run a foley recording/ADR/VO/various editing sessions very easily, but I wouldn't recommend them for any intensive final mix sessions.

The iMacs are much preferred for graphics and video.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by apple-q View Post
AFAIK. PT doesn't run on OSXserver
I used the demo of Protools 10 for the full 30 days on a mac mini server... it ran fine!
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Electrode View Post
I used the demo of Protools 10 for the full 30 days on a mac mini server... it ran fine!
A mini server running Lion Server edition?
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