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Is a GT 555M worth it for occasional use of Premiere Pro CS5.5?

Apr 10, 2012 5:13 AM

Hi all,


I'd like to ask for advice about a video card for a laptop.


My situation is that I work mainly in audio editing (Pro Tools, Sound Forge, Audition, etc), and only occasionally work with video (not intensive video editing, but using Premiere Pro CS5.5 to transcode or resize videos for soundtrack work, make showreels, do sound restoration, etc.). I also do some basic image editing in Photoshop.


In addition to the audio work and infrequent video work, I like to game occasionally (I'm such a slow gamer that none of my games are more recent than 2009!).


Currently I have a desktop PC that contains a Radeon HD4870 with 1GB RAM. I realise that a laptop will have to be a compromise on horsepower for the sake of mobility. I'm also aware that it would be an opportunity to get an Nvidia card that provides acceleration in Premiere Pro.


I am currently considering a Clevo-based 15.6" laptop with a 2GB GT555 card. Generally, this seems a reasonable balance of power, mobility and heat (since excessive fan noise will cause problems for audio).


However, having now read some of the posts on this forum (e.g., I am wondering whether this card is too low-specced (DDR3 RAM, 144 CUDA Cores) to make it worthwhile.


If it isn't worthwhile, I may as well include Radeon-based laptops in my search.


As I say, I only work with video occasionally, so a super-powerful card is definitely not worth the investment (and added heat/noise); my dilemma is whether I should even bother with CUDA acceleration given my requirements.


Thanks in advance for any advice!

  • Currently Being Moderated
    Apr 10, 2012 7:30 AM   in reply to icfm

    If the choice is a 555M or a Radeon, that is a no-brainer: 555M only.


    You do realize that a laptop can never keep up with a desktop for the same $$, that a laptop is not really a laptop, since you need a wall outlet to run it.

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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Apr 10, 2012 9:02 AM   in reply to icfm

    Hardware MPE capabilities, which are lacking on all AMD cards. With rendering, and exporting using rendering, scaling, blending or blurring (not the encoding, that is 100% CPU bound) this will be around a factor 10 faster (for that part of the export) than all AMD cards.

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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Apr 10, 2012 11:59 AM   in reply to icfm

    Oh, that changes things significantly. Your nVidia card needs at least 1 Gb of VRAM. 128 MB will not do. Check if there is a nVidia card with at least 1 GB memory, otherwise hardware MPE will not be possible at all and then it really makes no difference whether you have an AMD or nVidia card.

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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Apr 10, 2012 12:03 PM   in reply to icfm

    >128Bit DDR3


    Aside from the 128bit bandwidth (speed of transfer) how much video ram is on the card... is there at least 1 Gig?

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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Apr 10, 2012 12:08 PM   in reply to icfm

    OK, then it is useable for hardware MPE. The 128 bit memory bus just means it is not as fast as cards with 256 bit or even 384 bit memory busses, but still way faster than any AMD card.

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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Apr 14, 2012 4:48 PM   in reply to icfm



    A very useful resource is the PPBM 5 website, it has extensive benchmark results of people's rigs on standardized tests. Filter out the results purely for laptops and it will be much more useful for you.


    I recently experimented with a crappy geforce 525m and even that will suffice for your basic needs.

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