iMovie/Video Workflow?


Hey Guys,

Quick question for you regarding general workflows. I am fairly new to video capturing/editing/storing but very familiar with computers and storage/backups. I recently got a DJI Mavic Air drone that I’ve been LOVING and have some incredible 4k footage from. However, my problem is that my videos are massive in size. I understand that I could decrease the size by dropping the resolution; however, I want to keep 4k. Same concept for videos from my iPhone X that are 4k. Large in size but incredible quality - so I want to keep them that way.

For reference, I have a 27" iMac 2017, 3.5ghz i5, 24gb RAM, and 512gb SSB. I also have 4TB and 8TB External HDDs hooked up to the iMac, both USB 3.0. They are currently being used for media storage (Movies/TV shows) as well as Time Machine as well as Carbon Copy Cloner backups. I have several free TBs free though and can get another HDD if needed. I work mostly in iMovie and Photos (nothing more advanced at least right now).

That being said, what are your general “workflows” in terms of where you initially drop footage from drone (or camera, iPhone, etc) onto your computer. My issue is that I started a few projects in iMovie on my iMac, importing the footage directly into iMovie on my iMac SSD. Yet, after a few weeks of creating various projects, I was already down hundreds of gigs of space. Obviously this is not a viable long term solution. So is there a “standard workflow” for this type of scenario. My thinking is that I should keep the footage I’m currently working with on the SSD locally (since makes the real-time edits faster?) and “the rest” externally. But then what about once you’re done with a project? Export a standard .mp4 or whatever codec you want so that you have a single file to show friends/family or upload to YouTube, etc. But then what about the project itself? It’s still a huge iMovie file but probably a good idea to keep “raw” in case you need to go back to edit something in the future? Do you keep this on external HDDs? Just in “iMovie format” if that even exists?

Sorry for the rambling - hopefully you get my drift. I tried googling as well as searching the forums here, but nothing really gave me an answer. However, it seems like this should be a fairly uncommon problem that there have to be some workflow videos/documents that outline this right? Anyways, feel free to share anything you think would be helpful to me! New at this video stuff but really enjoying it!

PS - feel free to move this thread if it should be in the workflow thread, wasn’t really sure!



Just wanted to bump this back up to top to see if anybody could help out or at least point me in the right direction to an article/wiki/tutorial. Thanks!