What's the best Linux Hardware Platform - May 2018

Hi all,

I’ve just moved to a Canon XA-30 video camera and from OpenSHot to Shotput. My computer is emitting bubbles as it sinks into the mire of overload. I need to upgrade.


I run :slight_smile:I run:

Ubuntu with Gnome (currently 17.10)
Darktable for photography (more powerful than Lightroom)
Shotcut for video - (having recently moved from OpenShot)
Inkscape for vector graphics
GIMP as a Photoshop replacement
Audacity for sound editing

What I have that’s usable:
3 SSDs - one for OS, one for cache; one for work files
CoolerMaster case
BlueRay R/W
power supply?

So I’m looking to upgrade:
Motherboard / cpu / memory / fan - the core stuff. CPU will need to be
video card capable of min 3, pref 4 monitors; able to render video well

WHAT’S THE BEST PLATFORM AS FAR AS SHOTCUT IS CONCERNED? DarkTable will be OK regardless I think, It’s video editing I’m concerned about. I can only spend $1,000 - $1,200 USD. Can you please help me to understand what ShotCut needs to function well on Linux, and what hardware works well, making it’s advanced features available to Linux & Shotcut?

Thanks guys. I’m pretty excited about where Shorcut is going, and see it as the future. I just need to get my hardware good enough that things work well.

All the best from Ballarat, Australia :slight_smile:

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I’ve just seen something on hardware that didn’t come up in my initial search, sorry:

Is there anything more specific from Linux users though (I’m Ubuntu), who are using mid-level hardware (sub-$2k USD system) and it’s working really well and getting the best from the hardware?

The minimum hardware requirements are specific to all OSes.

I have had the best experience with OpenGL compatibility on Linux - at least as far as Shotcut is concerned - using the nvidia-made nvidia X11 driver. There will be increased attention to GPU acceleration in a couple of months, but even now with GPU Processing in the Settings turned off, much of the UI and some HTML-based effects need it. It’s hard to give recommendations. Depending on the project or parts of it, Shotcut can use many cores and other parts not. Definitely, get at least 16 GB RAM and make sure cooling is sufficient. Some people are making their machine overheat and shutdown.

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Thank you so much for replying. I’ve previously built my PC’s for photography. Even the IPS screens don’t have massive refresh rate, but beautiful colour. I’m looking to see which cards are good for video editing, but there’s very little information out there.

What is there enough masse is GAMING. Given that gaming relies on multiple layers, is the commentary on gaming hardware a reasonable guide to video editing too? If it is, it will be much easier to evaluate the hardware I need!

Lastly, can you please confirm that refresh rate is not as critical in this respect as ability to handle lots of layers/objects (assuming video editing only requires a refresh rate you the end video product frame rate). If this is correct, or there is anything else I should particularly look for in an NVIDIA OpenGL graphics card, can you please give me a brief explanation so I can get the best match.

I believe new Shotcut users might benefit from the parallel with gaming hardware needs if this holds true, because… It’s a jungle our there! (Well, for me trying to choose hardware it is :slight_smile: )

So what is the demand on the CPU vs video card? Knowing this helps me to spend the right funds in balance between the two.

From reading, it sounds like the video processing is CPU intensive. Does editing use the video card much? In which way? Does exporting use the video card more than editing? Does exporting use mpeg or other encoding?

Here’s hoping this is of help to those who come after :slight_smile:

My video camera is FULL HD / 1080i. This apparently correlates to the H.264 standard. I believe H.265 is 4K, which is beyond my camera, and frankly, I don’t care!

So here’s the sort of stuff I think I’m going to get (subject to availability through my PC builder):

ASRock - X370 Taichi ATX AM4 Motherboard
AMD - Ryzen 7 1700 3GHz 8-Core Processor
EVGA - GeForce GTX 1050 Ti 4GB SC GAMING ACX 2.0 Video Card
Corsair - Vengeance LPX 32GB (2 x 16GB) DDR4-2666 Memory
Cooler Master - Hyper 212 LED Turbo (Red) 66.3 CFM CPU Cooler

That totals just over $1400 AUD (Australia). Plus I need a big spindle drive :slight_smile:

This gives me Ryzen and NVIDIA with OpenGL 4.5.

I’d be VERY PLEASED if anyone wanted to comment.

You shouldn’t have much problem with that rig! I recently built a more modest rig using ASRock X370 Gamer, Ryzen 3 1200 w/16 gb ram and nvidia GT710. Works very smoothly for the home videos I do on KDE Neon. The only problem I have run into is I haven’t yet found a cpu temperature app or widget that supports Ryzen. Too new I think.


Thanks Ken. Are your videos at HD or FULL HD/1080i?

I’m a professional photographer, and just getting into video more with a new FULL HD video camera. Just wanting to know the PC I build will support FULL HD :slight_smile:

Full HD refers to 1080p. You have quoted 1080i.
1080p video is called “progressive scan.” In this format, 1,920-by-1,080-pixel high-definition movies are progressively drawn line after line, so they’re not interlaced. … Sometimes 1080p is termed “full HD” or “true HD,” to distinguish it from 1080i or 720p video.

I built my PC in 2007, so it’s not a young rig. I’ve updated the PSU and display card and for Windows 10 I added an SSD - but that’s all. I edit 1080p (True HD) and 4K. I use DaVinci Resolve for 4K as Shocut doesn’t handle it well at all on my hardware.
The PC uses a 6-core 3Ghz Phenom CPU, has 20Gb DDR3, an SSD boot drive and several spindle drives (both internal and external) and a 2Gb R7 360 display adapter.

IOW: You should be fine with that hardware. :slight_smile:

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I was looking into hardware a month or so back and got some good ideas from here:

On the note of hardware I’ve had exellent results using older workstation gear off of ebay. the cpu architectures are usually a few generations past but for that trade you can pick up a lot of brute force and then drop in a gpu.

This is an excelent example of where I’d start, you already have SSD’s and can add whatever controller cards you deem necessary(usb3 and a perc h310 are my normal recomendations) alongside a gpu, memory isn’t horrible either you can pick up a 48gb kit(two of which will fit) for about 160

I use one to work at 1080 and 4k without much fuss.

As Steve says.

All my videos are made for current HDTV standards. 1080p

Nice article. I noticed that the budget cpu was the one I used several months ago. I built with a Ryzen 3 1200. $109 usd at the time. I bought the budget passive cooling GT710 gpu for $53 usd. I’m happy with the trouble free and smooth performance. -=Ken=-