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Computing On The Road

Lindy Lindemann was a former Vice President of Alamo PC, is a professional, award winning videographer and offers courses at the Resource Center on Videography from time to time. He can be reached at .

As most of you know, I am a videographer and do commercial work here in Texas. My wife and I also have a home in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico and my FM3 (Temporary Resident of Mexico) authorizes me to produce videos in Mexico. As a result, when we are in San Miguel I quite often will shoot the raw footage and instead of waiting to return to my studio in San Antonio to edit it, I use my Sony Vaio laptop to do preliminary editing while in San Miguel.

I use a Sony Vaio Laptop, Model PCG-GRV680 which is really a multimedia workshop! It has serious power - a Pentium4 2.6GHZ processor, with 512MB of RAM and a 60GB hard drive. It also has a 16" LCD screen with SXGA 1280X1024 resolution. At the time I purchased this laptop, Sony offered a free PCWA-C150 wireless LAN PC card as a bonus in addition to a $100 rebate. While the SRP was $2499.99, CompUSA was offering it for $2299.99.

One of the unique things about this laptop is that it comes with a dual format DVD+/-RW/CD-RW combo recorder with Sony's Click to DVD software - so after editing I can burn a DVD to save my work and then load it onto my desktop editing system in San Antonio. It also comes with the iLink (IEEE-1394) digital interface which makes it easy to upload the video from my Sony PD-150 digital camera for editing. It is not the lightest laptop at 8.7 lbs., but after all, it has a lot in it.

In addition to Windows XP, it comes loaded with software such as: Picture Gear Studio, SonicStage, MovieShaker, Vaio Media, Adobe Photoshop Elements and Adobe Premiere LE for video editing. Since I wanted a full featured video editing software package, I upgraded the LE version to Premiere 6.5, Adobe's latest version.

While Adobe Premiere does not compare to my professional software (DPS Velocity), it is very adequate for preliminary editing. Premiere permits you to select either "storyboard" or "timeline" editing methods and has a nice array of transition effects to choose from. It has a moderate learning curve, but comes with a well documented manual. There are also several other texts available to assist in learning this program. It is amazing the power that is now available in a laptop computer and the advanced editing software to help the videographer compute on the road or any other place he/she may desire!

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