7 Replies Latest reply on Apr 24, 2015 9:17 AM by magic_hat

    Best High End Workstation Configuration for AE and 4K

    Alf de Varona

      I'm configuring my next PC workstation and have a large budget to get the best hardware available.  With the CPU options, I've trying to understand if I should focus  on many cores (up to 12), or a higher clock speed (with less cores).  Also, are NVIDIA cards still the best choice for AE and Premiere with regards to Open GL?  And of course, an SSD for cache disk and all the RAM I can afford...the new DDR4!

       

      Thanks,

      Alfred

        • 1. Re: Best High End Workstation Configuration for AE and 4K
          Dave LaRonde Level 6

          Well, Adobe  SAYS there are improvements coming to creative cloud applications -- particularly AE -- that will make multiprocessing much more efficient.  But to my knowledge, they have not confirmed this tidbit, and it is a crucial fact for you.  You may want to wait before you pull the trigger on your big purchase until you KNOW.

          However, I'm curious: how big is the SSD for your cache?  I hope it's really big for 4K!

          • 2. Re: Best High End Workstation Configuration for AE and 4K
            Szalam Adobe Community Professional & MVP

            Here is an event where the Adobe team talk about how Premiere and AE currently use system resources: http://www.adobe.com/cfusion/event/index.cfm?event=set_registered&id=2490687&loc=en_us

             

            As Dave says, Adobe is talking about making some huge changes in how After Effects works in order to make it perform better both in interactivity and in rendering. Todd on the AE team has said that a majority of them are working on this.

             

            But this isn't just talk. When I visited the After Effects offices, I got to see some of the new software in action and it is pretty impressive. The difficulty, as Dave points out, is that we don't have information yet on how this will work in the real world with cores vs. clock speed. All of the new changes aren't going to be here any time soon either as this is a major undertaking. So, for now, unless somebody on the AE team can speak up, all you have to go on is how it currently works. And, currently, I would say to focus more on the clock speed since there are a lot of things in AE that aren't multi-threaded.

             

            What software are you using besides AE (for example, Cinema 4D)?

             

            Stock After Effects doesn't really make all that much use of the GPU (barring the fact that it accelerates the obsolete ray-traced renderer). Now, there are some third-party plugins that do rely pretty heavily on the GPU, so if you're using Red Giant's Universe, VideoCopilot's Element 3d, or any of those, you'd want to check on their requirements. And, of course, Premiere uses it a lot.

            • 3. Re: Best High End Workstation Configuration for AE and 4K
              Alf de Varona Level 1


              Thanks Dave and Szalam for the quick replies.  It would seem that AE is undergoing some positive changes under the hood for multithreading.  I am using Universe, Element 3D, Cinema 4D, Lightwave 3D, and Premiere so a balanced approach is probably the best.  I'll likely go with a mid range speed and core count.  The DDR4 and SSD are what's going to give me the biggest improvement over my current system.  I'll get a 512GB SSD, and at least 64GB of RAM.  Do either of you have a recommendation on upper mid range dual GFX card solution?

               

              Thanks!

              Alfred

              • 4. Re: Best High End Workstation Configuration for AE and 4K
                Dave LaRonde Level 6

                Until Adobe states otherwise very soon (for your needs), I would look at a graphics card that's best for Premiere Pro.

                From what Szalam writes, it could be quite a while until Adobe states otherwise.

                • 5. Re: Best High End Workstation Configuration for AE and 4K
                  Szalam Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                  Dave LaRonde wrote:

                   

                  From what Szalam writes, it could be quite a while until Adobe states otherwise.

                  I don't really know the timeframe at all. "A while" is pretty subjective.

                  According to a post Todd made on the AE blog, there is an "upcoming version of After Effects—targeted for release this spring" (After Effects region of interest). We'll see if that has any of the new functionality by then. That could be as early as March, but "spring" could also be mid-June...

                  • 6. Re: Best High End Workstation Configuration for AE and 4K
                    Dave LaRonde Level 6

                    True, true, true.

                    Well, Adobe's 3-month announcement window is still better than Apple's practice of NO announcement window -- they just spring things on people.

                    • 7. Re: Best High End Workstation Configuration for AE and 4K
                      magic_hat

                      Thanks for your post. Saving me hours of research on unreliable sites.