Hardware opinion (project / rendering server)

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  • Posts: 14
  • Joined: Sat Apr 18, 2020 9:52 pm
  • Real Name: Christian Schneider

Hardware opinion (project / rendering server)

PostSat Apr 10, 2021 9:10 pm

Dear all,

I'd like to extend my hardware setup. At the moment, I am using my "old" Mac Pro (see signature) to edit in DR. However, I also like to use the possibility to run it on my MacBook Pro (i7, 2.6 GHz, 6 core, Radeon Pro).

Therefore, I am planning to set up a project server. I read that a Mac mini is recommended. However, I am looking for a cheaper solution and was thinking of an Intel NUC (i3, 3.0 GHz) - so something in between a RPi and a Mac mini ;).

Now, I asked myself if it is worth investing more money to have a rendering server, which is more powerful than my MacPro (and better in terms of ventilation than my MacBook). I'd like to run my project server headless with a linux distribution (CentOS or Ubuntu) and have the following questions:
- Can I run DR17 headless from command line WITHOUT an additional license (was promised by Blackmagic in the forum)
- Does the plan above makes sense - an Intel NUC running on linux will, as far as I understand, not have any GPU support and all rendering relies on the CPU. Can it outperform my Mac Pro? Output codec will be h264, input XDCAM or AVCHD
- Does the answer to question 2 changes when installing Windows 10 Pro on the NUC which has Intel Iris graphics? I read (somewhere..) that in this case, the GPU can be used by DR

Thank you for your opinion, best
Resolve 17.1 (Studio)
MacPro 5,1 6-core | 32 GB RAM | Sapphire Radeon RX 570 | 1 TB M.2 SSD (system) | 512 GB SSD (Video Footage)

Uli Plank

  • Posts: 10135
  • Joined: Fri Feb 08, 2013 2:48 am
  • Location: Germany and Indonesia

Re: Hardware opinion (project / rendering server)

PostSun Apr 11, 2021 1:52 am

DR needs a good GPU, without it it's useless.
And then, for the codecs you are using and the kind of output, a Mac mini M1 will outperform your Xeon CPU in the MP since they don't have hardware de- and encoding, while the M1 is very capable in that regard.
I have no idea how far BM got with a headless version.
Don't approach Resolve with your expectations from other NLEs! They are all different.
Resolve Studio 17.2 and Fusion Studio 17, macOS 10.15.7
iMac 2017 Radeon Pro 580 8 GB VRAM, 32 GB RAM
2018 Mac mini 16 GB RAM, eGFX Breakway RX 580 MacOS 10.15.7

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