Required Equipment

MFA in Film students must own a laptop capable of running the current versions of all Adobe Creative Suite or Creative Cloud software, along with at least two external hard drives (one for media; another to backup both the media and the system drive).

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While Windows-based systems can provide superior performance (in some cases), we recommend Apple laptops for purposes of compatibility with the auxiliary equipment CCA provides.

Recommended Laptop Configuration

  • 8 GB RAM (16 GB preferred)
  • 500 GB or larger hard drive, 7200 RPM or Solid-state drive (SSD). (5400 RPM drives are not acceptable.)
  • 4-Core i7 Intel (or better) processor
  • 1920 x 1080 screen resolution or greater
  • Firewire 800 port or Thunderbolt with Firewire 800 adapter
  • Capable of connecting eSATA drives through a card or Thunderbolt adapter
  • Capable of connecting SDHC and SDXC cards directly or through an external USB card reader
  • Matte/nonglare screen surface recommended

Note: Students are required to have two external firewire or eSATA hard drives: one for media (7200RPM or SSD recommended), and one with sufficient space to backup both the system drive and the media drive.

Students should own a personal camera that can be used for short assignments and daily shooting.

Minimum specifications

  • Manual control over aperture/exposure, shutter speed, focus, and white balance
  • Able to shoot 23.976 fps (24p) at 1920 x 1080 resolution
  • Media recorded to SDHC or SDXC cards or external drives

Recommended models and configurations

  • Camcorder (low end): Canon HF M500
  • DSLR-style (best): Panasonic Lumix GH2 with at least one OIS-equipped M43 lens
  • DSLR-style (acceptable alternatives): Canon 5D Mark II, 7D, 60D or equivalent