More important for video rendering? RAM or video card?

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Re: More important for video rendering? RAM or video card?

Postby Zanzaben » Tue Jul 24, 2012 5:36 pm

Kariudo wrote:Keep in mind that this is a pre-built pc we're talking about. The specs from HP say it's a 460W psu...but I doubt it has enough juice for almost everything that requires a 6-pin pci-e connector (or a 6-pin pci-e connector for that matter...)

Specs from HP suggest it's capable of handling a GTX 460.

Given what the OP has said, I'd just hold off on getting a graphics card. It makes little sense to get another graphics card with DVI if your display doesn't have a DVI input (and if you aren't using it for gaming.)


:up: This is all very true.

In regards to Kariudo points on the whole disk setup stuff he is probably right. I have a habit of being excessive when it comes to technology and most of my knowledge comes from the adobe forms and they are often dealing with far more difficult things then you will ever deal with such as RED 4k footage so it is entirely possible that what I have been saying is a little/completely overboard.
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More important for video rendering? RAM or video card?

Postby TEKnician » Tue Jul 24, 2012 10:52 pm

SSD internal. Terabytes of externals (FW800 or USB 3.0) that spin 7200rpm.

Heck, even a 64 GB SSD internal is enough to store the OS and your programs.

Better yet, get a DROBO. Stack your own hard disks into a single cabinet and RAID it. You could expand the capacity by adding internal hard drives into each of the 4 sockets as needed. Cheap storage that grows.
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Re: More important for video rendering? RAM or video card?

Postby TheLuminaireShow » Wed Jul 25, 2012 10:10 am

Thank you for everyone's input! I agree that I should forgo the graphics card. I'm interested in this SSD and I DID install a USB 3.0 just so people know. What's the transfer rate of that if I get a compatible HDD? However currently I'm thinking of possibly getting that SSD and the RAM and that's under $200 even! That sounds like a nice improvement. How exactly do you RAID something though?
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Re: More important for video rendering? RAM or video card?

Postby BasharOfTheAges » Wed Jul 25, 2012 11:53 am

TheLuminaireShow wrote:I DID install a USB 3.0 just so people know. What's the transfer rate of that if I get a compatible HDD?

4Gbit/sec theoretical max. Real world speeds would be closer to around 400MB/sec. This is actually faster than the internal USB to SATA connector inside any external HDD is going to be anyways.
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Re: More important for video rendering? RAM or video card?

Postby Kariudo » Wed Jul 25, 2012 12:07 pm

There are plenty of videos on youtube on how to set up RAID. This one is done by a guy on overclock3d.net, which I used to frequent.

If you can't do the things laid out in that video, then you'd have to buy a raid card like this or like this.
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Re: More important for video rendering? RAM or video card?

Postby TheLuminaireShow » Mon Jul 30, 2012 7:11 pm

Much obliged gentlemen. Out of curiosity, is there a means of measuring data transfer rates so I could post a comparison?
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Re: More important for video rendering? RAM or video card?

Postby BasharOfTheAges » Mon Jul 30, 2012 8:43 pm

Large enough file going from point A to point B via command line will give you time of transfer... There's also drive diagnostic/benching tools you can use.
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Re: More important for video rendering? RAM or video card?

Postby Cannonaire » Sun Aug 05, 2012 12:20 am

I have some recent experience switching from all HDDs to SSD for my main drive, and I would like to share some experience.
Before I upgraded, After Effects took about one to two and a half minutes to load. With everything installed on an SSD, it now takes 7 seconds from clicking the icon to everything loaded and ready for work. An SSD will completely change how responsive your computer feels. One of the reasons for this is that the random access times (seek times) are an order of magnitude faster than on rotational media. With regular hard drives, they have to spin up and the read heads need to seek to the right place on the disk to find the info you requested. They can be fast for sequential access, but random access is a lot slower. SSDs do not have to wait for any moving parts.

Another thing to keep in mind about SSDs is even within a series of drives with different sizes but same model number, the speeds will vary. The read speed should be uniform across a line, but write speed will be higher on higher capacity drives because they write to multiple chips at once, and higher capacity drives will have more physical chips to write to.

Lastly, since SSD tech is fairly new, reliability can be a problem with many drives, mainly based on which controller they use. This is my opinion, but I have done a lot of research on the subject: If you decide to get an SSD, I would recommend a Samsung 830 series drive (what I have now) or a Crucial M4, the Samsung being faster but also more expensive. These drives seem to have the best reliability and least problems at the moment. Even Intel drives have had problems recently.

Zanzaben wrote:...one word of warning about that is that it is important that you just put your OS and the adobe products on it and don't put any of the media, or previews, or anything else video related on it because video editing does so many more reads and writes to a disk then most other things that SSD's will often just die from being way overworked.

I was wondering about this and also about SSD use in general. I know that most drives have a fairly limited amount of total writes per sector (I heard roughly 3000 for my drive). Do NLEs really write all that much to the drive? Are there things I should be disabling/enabling and certain ways I should use my drive differently? I made sure TRIM is working properly. I figured every now and then it would be okay to have a large render on the drive for editing purposes as long as it is not changing at all; I would not suggest rendering everything to the SSD. Even limited to 3000 total writes per sector, the drive would still last 8 years if you were to write and erase the entire drive every day (I admit that would be really excessive).
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Re: More important for video rendering? RAM or video card?

Postby Mister Hatt » Sun Aug 05, 2012 3:08 am

I was gonna leave a legitimate comment but this wall of tl;dr got in the way.

Basically, the speed of your RAM and the number of channels are more important than the amount. If you're not hitting capacity it really doesn't matter. 16GB is fine for most personal shit. An easy way to tell is looking at the depth of your images, the resolution, and the sizes of your buffers. For example, YV12 content at 1920x1080 is going to be 3MB per frame. To fit a 1000 frame buffer (realistically it won't be this high), you only need 3GB of RAM for the renderer. You do have to take into account rendering effects and off-screen compositing but generally this won't even double your memory requirements. A bigger issue is multi-channel (quad is awesome), and fast RAM.

As far as video cards go, if you use them at all, then RAM capacity is important (and any regular graphics card sucks at this anyway), but also the VRAM buffer size and pipeline speed. It makes no difference if you card has 1GB or 12GB of VRAM if the pipe to the CPU and memory banks on the mainboard isn't fast enough to render to it or extract from it quick enough, which is the main reason source filters like DGNVDec aren't actually any faster than CPU.

Regarding SSD disks, go for the highest quality fully registered ECC drive you can, then buy 2 drives that are half the size you need and RAID0 them instead. You get more throughput for scratch disks that way, especially if they're not sharing a BUS, more failover, and more reliability. Capacity is nice but you really want something more reliable, so get smaller cheaper drives, and just have more of them.

Incidentally I recently benchmarked some 15k RPM SAS drives against SSD and the SSD still came out on top. It was also cheaper. I was using 2x128GB Intel ECC drives compared to 2x146GB Hitachi Ultrastars.

I hope that helps someone or other.
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Re: More important for video rendering? RAM or video card?

Postby TheLuminaireShow » Thu Aug 30, 2012 8:37 am

Alright, update with good and bad news. I upgraded my RAM and added the 90 GB SSD and now have Windows 7 running on it instead. Two problems though. One is that this version of Windows 7 can only utilize up to 16 GB of RAM. That means I have to upgrade to Windows 7 Ultimate or Windows 8 next month. -_- The other problem is that after installing Adobe Premium Suite again, the damn thing is already at capacity. There's no way the basic OS take up 60 GB of space on that drive. How can I find out what I can safely delete off that drive to get as much space as possible? I'm trying to get only my programs to run off that drive. The last thing I need after the OS boost will be the third and final external HDD that utilizes USB 3.0 and I'll be good to go.
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Re: More important for video rendering? RAM or video card?

Postby Pwolf » Thu Aug 30, 2012 12:16 pm

check your page file and hibernation files (download windirstat to get a better idea of where your disk space is going). the more ram you have, the large they will be. That said, why do you have more than 16gb of ram? thats a little overkill IMO. should put that money towards a larger SSD.
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Re: More important for video rendering? RAM or video card?

Postby TheLuminaireShow » Thu Aug 30, 2012 5:56 pm

Originally I had 6 x 2 GB sticks to get 12 GB of RAM, and I was told all RAM sticks had to be the same size or uniform. I had to buy 4 GB sticks and they were only about $20 each. So it was either pay $80 to get only 4 GB extra, or spend $120 to flat out double what I originally had. I got the 90 SSD because I was told it'd be enough (also had $30 rebate, so it was only $60), and it technically is, as long as I don't install anything else on it going forward. But it will be manageable if I can get rid of all the extraneous stuff. Out of curiosity, can games be installed and run off my other HDD if I wanted? Or does it have to be on the SSD with my OS?
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Re: More important for video rendering? RAM or video card?

Postby Pwolf » Thu Aug 30, 2012 6:07 pm

You were fine with 12gb IMO. Should've used that extra money on a large SSD. That said, money has been spent, if you want higher performance while editing, don't use the SDD as your OS disk. You're wasting disk space by having the OS and other programs on it. Programs will load faster but if your source or scratch disk aren't on the SDD, you're not going to see an improvement. So make the SDD your editing drive and move your os and programs to a larger disk.
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Re: More important for video rendering? RAM or video card?

Postby Pwolf » Thu Aug 30, 2012 6:08 pm

Also, yes you can install other programs onto another disk if you want to go that route.
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Re: More important for video rendering? RAM or video card?

Postby TheLuminaireShow » Thu Aug 30, 2012 10:19 pm

I was told, to limit bottle necking, I should have my OS and the Adobe products on the SDD, one HDD for caching, and another for my sources, as was mentioned earlier in the thread. I have a USB 3.0 port and when I get a sufficient external HDD it should transfer at a pretty efficient rate, should it not? I mainly got the SSD for running the programs, not for sheer space. Other people mentioned that Adobe can always utilize more RAM when rendering and exporting, so it sounded like a good idea to me. Thanks for the help pwolf. Does the SSD running my software and a third HDD via USB 3.0 not improve my capability? Or just theoretically not as much as another option would have?
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