12-11-2010, 06:28 PM
When you say Sony, I am going to assume you mean Vegas Pro. It depends on what his needs as an editor are, but, if you say he is no longer able to progress passed what Vegas offers, then iMovie will not suffice. It would technically be downgrading his editor if you only allow him to work in iMovie.
Im an editor, far above average I would say, and my personal opinion would be that he is not using Vegas to the full potential(if you guys are using Vegas). It is quite a robust editor has developed quite a reputation in the enthusiast and pro-sumer worlds. It would, in my opinion, only be trumped by Adobe Premier CS5, Final Cut, and Avid MC. So, if you guys do get a new Mac, it will not be equipped with equivalent editing software to what you are using now out of the box. You'll have to purchase separate software, most likely Final Cut Express.
chas_m, with digital film making (editing), RAM and storage are important, but the processor is the most important thing. Depending on your software, the video card can accelerate your machines performance 10 fold (no joke). Premiere CS5 will get those kinds of performance gains when using certain nVidia cards. This is the only program at the moment that gets this much acceleration from the video card. I imagine most future programs will follow this, maybe with different video cards though.
I think you should be asking yourselves if investing in a new Mac is really going to suit his needs? The canon 7d will hugely benefit form his ability to edit native DSLR footage in premiere, no transcoding necassary as long as your computer has the muscle (with an i7 processor alone, it will). Unless he is intent on using Final Cut, theres no need to go from Windows to OS X. Premiere operates on both platforms, and you can take advantge of the support for nvidia cards as the iMac will not have the option for those cards (the cards start at about $85).
So "stepping up" for video editing really does not require using a Mac computer, and you may very well be stepping down, especially in the short term while he jumps to a lesser equipped, never before used video editing application (iMovie).