Computer to handle ARRI RAW footage

Sun Feb 14, 2016 9:08 pm

Dear friends,

I am looking for a beast of a computer to buy or to rent in the Netherlands so I can offer my clients the awesomeness of a production shot on ARRI.

As seen on the fallowing Dutch rental Camalot, I am able to rent the fallowing ARR camera's.
http://camalot.nl/product-category/digital-cinema/arri/

ARRI Amira
ARRI Alexa Studio XT 4:3
ARRI Alexa Mini
ARRI Alexa XT 4:3
ARRI Alexa 16:9

I tried testing the ARRI footage on my computer (ARRI 65) and only the Prores works. Which I should be happy for, I guess, but obviously I am striving for the best.

Unfortunately I still have allot to learn about computers, because it never makes any sense to me. But I am in dire need of getting or being able to rent a beast of a computer to handle all the ARRI RAW files.

Kindly I would like to ask you all for help on this. What should I be looking for? The best Computer I can think of is a Mac Pro. But I don't know if that will do. I don't have any hands on experience with filming on an ARRI.

Thanks in advance and have a nice day.
RalfSchooneveld
 
Posts: 1
Joined: Tue Jan 19, 2016 10:33 pm

Re: Computer to handle ARRI RAW footage

Mon Feb 15, 2016 3:11 pm

Dear Ralf,

there is a number of different things to consider...
First of all: What is it that you want to do? Editorial, Grading, VFX, data-wrangling or QC?

If you want to start the math, go with roughly 36MB (ALEXA 65 OG; or you take 2.8K 16:9 "basic" ALEXA ARRIRAWs (7MB/frame) and convert that to 16bit DPX >37MB/frame), multiply this by 30fps (to be save), that leaves you with a first spec of 1.080MB/s sustainable data rate that you need from a connected/internal storage. So get comfortable with internal SSD Raids...

That said, the next thing you need is graphics power. De-bayer, grading... all graphic card based.
So better two cards than one and RAM wise 32-64GB should do.

The machine is the one thing. Viewing and controlling it is an other. If we think of e.g. a Resolve workstation, what you want to have is a grading panel (e.g. Resolve, Tangent Devices). Add a cinema-projector to that setup or a class 1 reference monitor, plus one or two cheaper screens for the GUI...
For a projector, you nee a separate room to deal with the noise and cooling - and in general you need good viewing conditions.

Quite a lot of things to consider, which leaves us with the first question again.
Here at our workflow department we run fully spec'ed MacPros (dual D700, plenty of RAM and via TB extension connection to video cards) and a SuperMicro Linux workstation (with the mentioned internal SSD raid).

So much to tease the topic, I'm also intrigued to hear what gear people out there are using!

Cheers,
Jan
Jan Heugel
Application Engineer
Jan Heugel
 
Posts: 223
Joined: Wed Aug 13, 2014 3:15 pm
Location: Munich, Germany

Re: Computer to handle ARRI RAW footage

Sun Mar 13, 2016 1:55 am

Hi Jan,

I use a fully souped up 2013 Mac Pro with a 8TB external SSD Raid. What external video cards are you able to use over Thunderbolt 2.

I am only able to use Red Rocket X but I am not aware of any other card being supported. Please let me know what video cards work as I would love to supplement my on-board GPU.

I am inclined to add another Mac Pro to my rig to divide Data and Transcode functions to independent machines over an all SSD thunderbolt SAN.

Thanks,
Sulekh
Sulekh
 
Posts: 5
Joined: Sun Jan 31, 2016 12:18 am

Re: Computer to handle ARRI RAW footage

Mon Mar 14, 2016 12:29 pm

Hi Sulekh,

we're only utilizing the internal D700's in our MacPro.
A good reference is also the Resolve "Hardware selection and configuration guide".

How will you be transcoding and what softwares are you planning to run?

Cheers,
jan
Jan Heugel
Application Engineer
Jan Heugel
 
Posts: 223
Joined: Wed Aug 13, 2014 3:15 pm
Location: Munich, Germany

Re: Computer to handle ARRI RAW footage

Tue Mar 15, 2016 6:36 pm

I currently work with Resolve Studio. I am planning to move to On Set Dailies. That would necessitate a new tower. Hoping to see a solution at NAB that will hopefully work with Alexa 65 footage as well as 8K footage from other cameras. UHD, WCG, HDR, HFR, VR too many boxes to check :lol:
Sulekh
 
Posts: 5
Joined: Sun Jan 31, 2016 12:18 am

Re: Computer to handle ARRI RAW footage

Sat Oct 08, 2016 5:33 pm

Jan Heugel wrote:Dear Ralf,

Here at our workflow department we run fully spec'ed MacPros (dual D700, plenty of RAM and via TB extension connection to video cards) and a SuperMicro Linux workstation (with the mentioned internal SSD raid).

So much to tease the topic, I'm also intrigued to hear what gear people out there are using!

Cheers,
Jan


I would like to know what extension box and external GPU combination are you using?
At the moment of this writing, 2016, there is no Thunderbolt extension PCI card that support GPU.
Everybody is waiting for the Thunderbolt 3 and USB 3.1-C, which nativally is going to support GPU through extension PCI boxes, but so far there hasn't been a release of this combination.
Willian Aleman
Colorist - Digital Imaging Technician
NYC, USA
Willian Aleman
 
Posts: 1
Joined: Wed Aug 31, 2016 2:20 am
Location: New York City, USA

Re: Computer to handle ARRI RAW footage

Mon Oct 10, 2016 10:04 am

Dear Will,

sadly we don't. I was referring to a BMD Decklink card as a "video card" for HDSDI outs.

The Mac Pro can be equipped with internal dual AMD D700 cards at best. This fact (and the MacPro itself) has not changed for three years now. That's why we're looking into NVidia solutions on Windows for some time already. They are way more capable than the old AMDs.

Best,
Jan
Jan Heugel
Application Engineer
Jan Heugel
 
Posts: 223
Joined: Wed Aug 13, 2014 3:15 pm
Location: Munich, Germany

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