Mac Setup: Mac Pro Video Editing & Music Production Workstation

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The weekend is here which means it’s time for another featured Mac setup! This time we’re sharing the awesome workstation of Philip S., a media producer from the UK who has some great advice on building a dream setup. Let’s jump to it and learn a bit more…

What do you use your Mac workstation for?

I use my Apple gear for video editing, video compositing, and music production.

What hardware makes up your Mac setup?

  • Mac Pro (2009 model) 2x 2.26GHz Quad Core Intel Xeon (8 Core)
  • 32 GB RAM
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX680 2048MB Graphics Card
  • 256GB PCi Express SSD for OS X & Apps
  • 128GB SSD Scratch Drive
  • 3x 3.5″ 7200RPM 2TB Raid0 array for media files
  • USB 3.0 Card with External USB Time Machine
  • Black Magic Intensity Pro PCi card for HD video output to 46″ Samsung panel
  • Griffin Powermate used as volume control, jog wheel
  • Logic colored-shortcut Keyboard for editing
  • Apple Magic Mouse
  • Mackie Control mixer control surface
  • 9″ lilliput touch-screen scopes monitor to check video output signals
  • Alesis M1 MKII near field monitors (speakers)
  • 2 x 27″ Samsung LED Display panels
  • Electronically height-adjustable desk

Why this particular Mac setup?

I have chosen these pieces of equipment based on my needs, what I can afford and what other industry specialists have recommended. It has taken a decade of testing what works and what doesn’t, along with designing the room and treating it right.

I bought my Mac Pro through a recycling company. A post production house had a contract for new machines every year or so. The old ones are removed and new fresh ones put in. The old machines are recycled by a company and sold at great prices. I got it for a great price and didn’t have to add much hardware initially as it came from a post-production house, so it was ready to perform as needed. The graphics card was upgraded to take use of Adobes Cuda technology along with USB 3.0, the SSD’s, Black Magic Card etc gradually to fit the rest of my gear and my workflow.

Same story with the desk. It’s RRP was £5,000 ($7800) but after over 12 months of online searching I found an ex-display model the company used to take to shows and events. Slight wear marks but nothing major or noticeable and I got it for £500 ($780) after some haggling. They even delivered it!

What are some of the apps you use most often?

My most used apps are Adobe Premiere Pro, After Effects, Photoshop, Logic Pro X.

TRIM Enabler was a great app that saved a couple of SSDs and bought them back up to speed but since it doesn’t work now with Yosemite due to their change in Kext-Signing, I may downgrade to Mountain Lion.

It’s taken 10 years to find a setup I am really happy with but it’s a great environment to work in, and my Mac Pro munches through audio and video like PacMan!

Do you have any workstation advice you’d like to share with others?

If there’s one thing I’ve learnt it is to bide your time and take things slow when building your workstation. Everybody wants the perfect setup yesterday, but patience pays off in the end. I NEVER DREAMT I’D BE ABLE TO AFFORD A SETUP LIKE THIS!!!!  Hunt down the bargains!!!

All the best from the UK.

Do you have a Mac desk setup or Apple workstation you’d like to share with OSXDaily? Go here to get started, basically you’ll take a few good pictures, detail the hardware, and answer a couple of questions of how you use your workstation and send it on in! You can always browse through other featured Mac setup posts too!

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