May 11, 2015 at 5:57AM, Edited May 11, 6:01AM


External Graphic Card Docking system, a solution for 4K on cheap/old PC?

As a struggling newbie I am also going through the situation where I am forced to upgrade to a powerful PC (sorry no Apples and MACronies for me) though right now I am in the middle of getting my first 4K camera with super tight budget, GH4 with some cheap adapter for using it along with my EF lenses.

So situation is very tight for me, very tight.

Recently on youtube I came accross a video in which some guy demonstrated / reviewed an external docking system for PC graphic card "WITH" very old laptop while playing a few graphically demanding games on very high frame rate without any lag, so yeh I was impressed because $50 for the docking system and then buy any suitable graphic card in my budget and I am all set for HD Video editing (they didnt mentioned 4K but I am assuming it can do that) - thats what the video and the product selling company says.


Is it really real?
If yes then can it do 4K or limited to max HD editing?
Is it a real deal for newbies with super tight financial situation?


I'm assuming your refering to this video:
Proving your laptop has a spare pci conection, as the guy in the video said you may have to remove your network card, so no internet unless you get a wireless dongle (pretty cheap).

However you also need to factor in the cost for the card and the power supply and of course the better the gpu you get the more power your power supply will need to deliver (more expensive)

And finally this video demonstrates the gaming potential of this setup. Video editing is an entirely differnet matter. With gaming if you have a high end gpu you can just about get away with a low end cpu. But video editing is way more cpu intesnive, and there is nothing a gpu can do to fix that. Quite a lot of things in video editing programs can be accelerated by a gpu but if your cpu is too slow its not really going to make much difference. And the chances of you editing 4K are very low. Personally I wouldn't go near anything with less than 4 threads for video editing, and I'm much more comftable with the 8 I get from my xeon E3 1230.

So finally I recommend that you build a new pc as this is the most cost effective way of getting a new computer. I currently use a hackintosh for editing and VFX and I love it. For about £400 you could get something capable of 1080p editing. Bearing in mind how compressed GH4 4k is you could maybe get away with that to.

Hope that helps, sorry for the essay, if you want any advice on computers or a recommended build just ask. I have built two hackintoshes and I have a render farm so I'm relitively confident in answering most harware questions :)


May 14, 2015 at 5:17PM, Edited May 14, 5:18PM

You voted '-1'.
DP, Director, Editor, VFX

learn to use DI like cineform, prores, dnxhd/hr and you can found easier to read and edit a 4k resolution. with DI is the disk speed your bottle neck, and you can edit easier. This from the born of videoediting with first avid. do you think everyone use muscle (cpu) editing 8k raw? ever? no, the easier way is to convert in a editing codec thought for editing with less cpu gpu request and more disks request. i edit 4k prores with old notebook (hp mobile workstation) of 2012 with ssd and 20 gb of ram with (today) obsolete quadrofx880.
Anyway the advise of GradedBlue is good, better to assemble a new and editing oriented computer, forget gamer suggest not all game oriented power are good for editor and post, and sometimes is a waste of money.

November 18, 2017 at 8:39AM

Carlo Macchiavello
Director (with strong tech knowledge)

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