When it comes to video editing, one of the most frequently asked questions is how many drives do I need? The answer is not as straightforward as you might think. It depends on several factors, including the type of footage you are working with, the size of your projects, and your budget.
Why multiple drives matter?
Before we dive into how many drives you need for video editing, let’s first discuss why having multiple drives is essential. When you are editing video footage, your computer needs to read and write large amounts of data quickly.
If you only have one drive, your computer must read and write to that same drive simultaneously. This can cause performance issues such as lag and slow render times.
The role of the operating system drive
The operating system (OS) drive is where your computer’s operating system is installed. This drive should be separate from any other drives used for video editing.
It is essential to keep your OS drive clean and uncluttered so that it can operate optimally. Installing software or storing files on this drive can slow down your computer’s overall performance.
The importance of a scratch disk
A scratch disk is a temporary storage location used by your video editing software to store files while they are being worked on. Having a dedicated scratch disk can significantly improve the performance of your editing software because it allows for faster read and write speeds.
Different types of footage require different types of drives
The type of footage you work with plays a significant role in determining how many drives you need. For example, if you work with high-resolution footage such as 4K or 8K, you will need more storage space than if you work with lower resolution footage like 1080p.
If you work with raw footage that has not been compressed, such as RED or ARRI footage, you will need even more storage space. This is because raw footage can take up a lot of space on your drives.
Minimum requirements for video editing
If you are just starting with video editing, and you are on a tight budget, you can get away with using just two drives: one for your operating system and software and one for your scratch disk.
However, if you plan to work with high-resolution footage or do professional-grade work, you will need additional drives. Here are some general guidelines:
- 2-drive setup: OS drive and scratch disk
- 3-drive setup: OS drive, scratch disk, and project files drive
- 4-drive setup: OS drive, scratch disk, project files drive, and media cache/database drive
- 5-drive setup: OS drive, scratch disk, project files drive, media cache/database drive, and backup drive
The number of drives you need for video editing depends on several factors such as the type of footage you work with, the size of your projects, and your budget. Having multiple drives can significantly improve the performance of your editing software by allowing for faster read and write speeds.
Remember to keep your operating system separate from any other drives used for video editing and consider having a dedicated scratch disk. With these guidelines in mind, you should be able to determine how many drives you need for video editing.