12 Replies Latest reply on Apr 12, 2015 1:26 PM by BartonGarrett256

    Best CPU configuration for Premiere Pro/ After Effects

    KittykatKelvin Level 1

      Hello, I'm slightly frustrated. I'm using an aging Mac Pro currently and I'm planning to build a custom made workstation to replace it. Since I've began using some Windows Only applications in my workflow Mac isn't in the picture right now.



      As of right now Intel has two types of i7 based CPU's on the market utilizing the 2011 V2 chipset. Quad Core CPU's that have excellent single thread performance and marginal relative multithreading performance and 6 and 8 core CPU's that offer better multi threading support but lack the single thread performance the quad cores achieve.


      I'm trying to figure out what configuration would be better for Premiere Pro and After Effects with my workflow which is mostly 2k footage but I'm beginning to use 5k and 6k downscaled.  My current Mac pro (a 2010 6 Core unit) has trouble running more than one 2k stream even when utilizing ram preview and SSD swap storage. The Mac Pro also uses a 760TI for accelerated playback.


      As far as I've read Premiere isn't very equipped currently to utilize the 6+ core CPU's, is that true? Should I expect Premiere to utilize them in the future??


      Thanks, Kelvin


      Film Maker, Creator and editor.

        • 2. Re: Best CPU configuration for Premiere Pro/ After Effects
          KittykatKelvin Level 1

          Maybe you didn't read "planning to build a custom made workstation to replace it."


          Who would buy a premade desktop PC anyway? My application requires it to be built because I tend to be very stringent about the quality of the components, case and power supply. Mac Pro quality is a must.

          • 3. Re: Best CPU configuration for Premiere Pro/ After Effects
            Bill Gehrke Most Valuable Participant

            If you really want a reliable true Premiere Pro video editing computer forget Apple and get a guaranteed supported computer from ADK as John suggests.

            • 4. Re: Best CPU configuration for Premiere Pro/ After Effects
              BartonGarrett256 Level 3

              Thanks for asking this question. I'm researching the same thing, as my current ride is getting a little long in the tooth.  I looked around the hardware section forum, as well as the Adobe website and did not find much current info.


              I've built my own computers for the past decade or so.  It is actually pretty simple to do, mostly because of guys into gaming, who are numerous and zealot like to the point everything we need is refined. Poke around the web, the how-to knowledge that is everywhere is scary.  If we, as a society, applied the collective effort spent on all aspects of video games into space travel and medicine we'd be lounging on Mars, cured of cancer.


              My opinion of Macs for editing, I grew up with them and am typing this on an iPad, is you are paying (extra) for the OS, and for what we are doing I don't see the point.  I don't think the hardware is any different these days. But to each his own.


              Stick to brand names, the serious components are all decent- I will use an ASUS a motherboard (get one that holds 4 RAM sticks, not two) 4 TB 7200 rpm Hitachi drives, at least one 500MB SSD, an NVIDIA graphics card (at this point either a K4200 or a K5000, as well as reuse my existing K2200) a quiet 850 watt PS, and good fast RAM.  Make sure it has plenty of USB 3 ports and lots'o bays for drives.  All the components are warranted, and the support structures are there too.  I've gotten great support from NVIDIA, and I stick with trusted retailers, the prices are more or less the same everywhere now on components.


              I would love to hear an expert opinion about which chipsets are best, as well as unbiased dissertations about video cards. An expert in those I am not. The other components are fairly easy to figure out, but video cards and chipsets, I am not current there.

              My general rule is figure out the best tool I can afford then buy the next higher grade. When applied to electronics it will lengthen the service life of the computer, and although the build part is easy, migration is never something I look forward to.

              • 5. Re: Best CPU configuration for Premiere Pro/ After Effects
                KittykatKelvin Level 1

                Thanks for the reply, I think that everyone is missing my question.


                As for everyone here who keeps mentioning that brand above, I'm not interested in a premade computer. They are not cost effective, their build quality isn't to my standard *The Mac Pro Standard* and their chassis looks unprofessional and consumer which matters allot when you're dealing with clients directly. I've been building computers since well before the ATX standard. The question that I asked which apparently isn't answerable is, what kind of CPU in the current Intel 2011 V2 lineup is best for Premiere Pro and After Effects, the quad cores that offer better performance per core OR the hexa and octa core Intel CPU's that offer diminished single thread performance but are better when dealing with a heavily threaded workflows. I'm finding it hard to find reputable information or as BartonGarrett mentioned modern content. CC 2014 is very different then CS6 or even the earlier versions of CC so previous discussions on older versions are not very useful. If I invest the 1500$ or more on a 8 Core Intel CPU I would like to know that it has benefits over the quad cores which are a third the cost. I Know that AE will benefit from the 8 core but I hardly use it compared to premiere. I spent close to seven grand altogether on my last Mac Pro which was perfect, the unit never had downtime in 5 years which is unheard of in the consumer PC market. That's why I'm buying mostly superMicro server components such as the case, PSU and motherboard. If my computer were to fail due to a blown motherboard capacitor or dead power supply I could potentially lose thousands if not more not to mention reputation damage and lost data. Which could be catastrophic. I think everyone is on a different page, I'm not discussing this in the context of somebody who doesn't understand computer components and the differences between a professional solution and a consumer one.  I didn't mention that in my original post because I figured that it would be assumed here.

                • 6. Re: Best CPU configuration for Premiere Pro/ After Effects
                  cc_merchant Level 4

                  Only look at 2011v3 CPU's. The v2 's are outdated. If the emphasis is on Premiere, look at the i7-5960X 8-core 2011v3 CPU. Otherwise look at dual Xeon 14-core or better, but at a price.


                  If price is no object, consider participating in the Aurora project:



                  • 7. Re: Best CPU configuration for Premiere Pro/ After Effects
                    Bill Engeler Level 3

                    Both CS6 and CC will use all the cores you give them. The advice for the 2011v3 CPUs is good.

                    • 8. Re: Best CPU configuration for Premiere Pro/ After Effects
                      BartonGarrett256 Level 3

                      The Tweakers page is a great resource, I had not seen it until this thread.   I always prefer to get multiple opinions to reduce bias, but it is fantastic regardless.  I do worry how up to date it is, and how we can know if suggestions are obsolete, especially since the posts are not dated.  I'm preparing to rebuild my system and want to get the right motherboard and a 6 core processor.  How do we know when the suggestions are not current? Is the best way to see what custom makers are offering?

                      I suspect there may be new products, like video cards, announced this week at NAB? I would guess editing is a small market and CAD or gaming drives the offerings.

                      • 9. Re: Best CPU configuration for Premiere Pro/ After Effects
                        Bill Gehrke Most Valuable Participant

                        I would strongly suggest for your build an X99 based motherboard with an m.2 socket with (if you can afford it) the i7-5960X 8-core processor with 64 GB of DDR4 RAM and a Samsung 850 Pro OS drive and a soon to be available Samsung SM951 m.2 project drive plus one or more GPU's.  It flies!  I have one running and it is great..

                        • 10. Re: Best CPU configuration for Premiere Pro/ After Effects
                          BartonGarrett256 Level 3

                          Thanks for the excellent advice! I will heed it. I will see if I can swing the 8 core (it's $1k), I was planning on the 6 core ($.6k), and adding a second K2200, after reading the Tweakers page it sounds like buying the first was not the best choice, but I assume I'm better off buying a second rather than starting from scratch.


                          I will migrate my existing monitors, case, Samsung 250 and 500SSDs, get the recommended cooler, the X-99 deluxe MB, a few new 4TB drives and upgrade to a 850w high efficency PS.


                          One more question- I'm reluctant to buy RAM not all at once, but how risky is buying the same RAM (maker, and model) in two 32GB buys six months apart? Should it all be purchased at once?


                          I looked up the SM951 m.2, it sounds killer.


                          I am reminded of the story- a guy was walking down a rural road in Vermont and came upon a farmer chopping wood with a large, very shiny axe.  He stopped and shared his admiration of it with the farmer who smiled and remarked- yes, this is the best axe I've ever owned, I've replaced the handle three times and the head twice but it just keeps going like all get out.


                          thanks again! 

                          • 11. Re: Best CPU configuration for Premiere Pro/ After Effects
                            Bill Gehrke Most Valuable Participant

                            Forget about the Quadro K2200 sell it and get a single GTX card for the $430 price.  Unless you have a very expensive 10-bit monitor it is of no use.  Your K2200 has only 640 CUDA cores and a lousy 80 GB/second memory bandwidth.  A GTX 970 has 1664 CUDA cores 224 GB/second, much better than two each K2200's.


                            RAM buying is a risk unless you buy both set at the same time, but as processes generally improve with age the yields of better chips generally improves also and you might have luck doing it that way.


                            Here is where I got my SM951.

                            • 12. Re: Best CPU configuration for Premiere Pro/ After Effects
                              BartonGarrett256 Level 3

                              I do have a 10- bit NEC monitor, which I use as the program monitor (and for Ps), in a three monitor setup.  I'll try and run both cards, as well as an old GTX 660 that I replaced with the K2200 (and did not see much change but it supports three monitors) and see if I can get it to work and detect a difference. If they don't get along I'll find them new homes.


                              I will just bite the bullet and buy all the RAM at once, hopefully it will prolong the useful life of the system, the true cost to upgrade in terms of disruption is higher than the purchase price of components. I want to push that date out.  I will continue to curse 4K which seems to me to be pointless after the 9th row or in any living room smaller than Texas. The good news is I have not heard of any programs to improve the density of rods and cones, so maybe this arms race has an end point, somewhere.


                              I will save the SM951 install for the post partum phase when the novelty wears off.


                              Thanks again, great advice!