On my journey to becoming an online creator, one of the most important tools I required was a computer. Evolving, I decided to pivot to also include video elements in my creation process. Which in turn means my computer requirements are now different.
While my computer was capable of handling the music side of my creativity. It fell short of the requirements needed to handle video creation. My computer’s CPU and Intel Core i7 6700k Quad would be hard pushed when dealing with 4K video.
The lack of a dedicated graphics card also wouldn’t help the process. If I wanted to bring video into my creation process, I need to upgrade my computer. First, I would need to know what video editing software I was going to use and the computer requirements for said software.
Has a rule of thumb I only use software that is available on both Mac and Windows. Which ruled out Final Cut Pro. The two contenders left for me were Adobe Premiere Pro and After Effects, or Blackmagic’s DaVinci Resolve. My computer was able to run both programmes with the caveat that it would require a dedicated graphics card.
Nvidia RTX 3000 Series
After hours of online research, my luck was that both AMD and Nvidia were going to release next-generation graphics cards twice as powerful as the previous generation for the same price. All I would have to do is wait for the cards to be released. Then buy the best one for the money, and my computer would be really good to go. Wrong, wrong, oh so wrong!
Release dates came and went for both the Nvidia RTX 3000 series and the AMD RX 6000 series cards. One, two, three months went by, and no sign of these cards.
Demand for these cards outpaced both manufacturers’ ability to supply the cards. Leaving me in a conundrum, with no availability date for these cards in sight. I am left with the inability to upgrade my computer, which has halted my online creative endeavours.
Enter the M1 chip. Apple’s annual September event detailed this new system on a chip processor. While I had no reason to doubt Apple’s claims on the chip’s performance, as reviews started to come in or out, whichever you prefer, it was clear Apple’s M1 system on a chip processor had changed everything.
The saying goes, “Google is your friend, but YouTube is your friend too. In numerous video reviews on YouTube, time after time, the M1 chip was tested and praised for its performance. Apple’s entry-level computers with the M1 chip often outperform computers costing considerably more.
Now the question was, “Can I edit videos on these M1 chip computers?” Like I said, YouTube is your friend. Numerous creators put the 13″ Mac Book Pro, Mac Book Air, and Mac Mini through their paces. The overall consensus was that the M1 chip was more than capable of editing 4K video.
Now the question was, “Do I buy an M1 Mac Mini available now or wait for an AMD or Nvidia graphics card?” Three months past the release date and no availability date in sight. The decision was easy when considering that the Mac Mini costs £699.
The cards I was willing to buy were in the range of £299–£649 MRSP. But they were selling via pre-order at £500–£800+, which was a no-no for me. It should be noted that video editing is my focus, not gaming. I understand why a gamer would wait or pay extra to get their hands on one of these cards.
So in the M1 chip vs. the RTX 3000 series vs. the RX 6000 series, The M1 chip was the clear winner, but AMD and Nvidia cards, four months after release, still cannot be brought. I now have an M1 Mac Mini that can run both Adobe Creative Cloud and Blackmagic DaVinci Resolve. In the future, I will transition my music production to an Apple silicon computer, but for software compatibility reasons, I’ll keep my music production on the Intel PC platform for now.
Update: It is now six months later. Nvidia announces that it may be 2022 before the availability of cards is back to normal. Cards are now selling for £600 or more.