23 Replies Latest reply on Feb 21, 2017 11:28 PM by jdecker1978

    Will an ssd help?

    jdecker1978 Level 1

      I have a 5k iMac and am just starting to dabble in 4K editing. It's really choppy. Unfortunately I only have the 2gb graphics card. I'm thinking about updating the fusion drive with an ssd to increase performance. Finances are pushing me for a smaller ssd and will be storing th media on an external usb 3 drive. If the media will be in a non ssd external drive is there any point to the upgrade? With a 500gb I do have the option of doing everything on the internal drive and then transferring it for storage but that seems like a pain.

        • 2. Re: Will an ssd help?
          Peru Bob Adobe Community Professional & MVP

          If the media will be in a non ssd external drive is there any point to the upgrade?

          No.

          • 3. Re: Will an ssd help?
            Warren Heaton Adobe Community Professional

            Hi J:

             

            If you opt to work from an external USB3 drive, you definitely want to review the link that Meg The Dog pasted into her response.  With that workflow, you can edit directly from your USB3 drive and export High Resolution edited masters to your internal Fusion drive (of course, “Fusion Drive” is just Apple’s marketing department’s name for “hybrid drive”).

             

            If your budget allows for it, purchase an external Thunderbolt RAID0.  Depending on the bandwidth requirements of your 4K footage, you might be able to use a non-RAID external Thunderbolt drive instead.

             

            For your model iMac, Thunderbolt2 is a match; however, you should be fine with a Thunderbolt3 device as long as you have the adapter (without the Thunderbolt3 to 2 adapter, you won't be able to connect the device).

             

            Promise, LaCie and G-Tech are each popular drive makers, but definitely shop around for the best capacity, speed, warranty and price.

             

             

             

            -Warren

            • 4. Re: Will an ssd help?
              jdecker1978 Level 1

              Thanks everyone. I was planning on using Thunderbolt. But what it comes down to is what Peru Bob touched on. If I put a standard hard drive in the enclosure for my projects to be on, and an SSD for the system, will it actually be any faster or is it essentially the same as my current fusion drive?

              • 5. Re: Will an ssd help?
                Peru Bob Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                Booting the system will be faster.

                • 7. Re: Will an ssd help?
                  Meg The Dog Adobe Community Professional

                  You don't want the media on the internal drive if at all possible. That drive is occupied doing what the operating system and open app(s) are requiring it to do. The last thing you want to do is to add the load of fetching video and audio streams demanded by Premiere at the same time.

                   

                  Just because an external drive is a USB3 drive, there is no guarantee of the speed at which it can provide the video to the app. If you have a USB3 enclosure, but a slow hard drive inside - like drives sold at big box stores - you will be limited by the drive speed.

                   

                  You need to get fast (and reliable) storage for video files, or work in the Proxy workflow which is specifically designed to allow lower horsepower hardware to handle modern file formats.

                   

                  MyD

                  • 8. Re: Will an ssd help?
                    jdecker1978 Level 1

                    This is really helpful Meg. I will look into the Proxy workflow. I do have a thunderbolt enclosure for one drive. So it seems like the best option would be to buy the largest SSD I can afford, and use my fusion for boot and the external thunderbolt SSD for storage. It will fill up but I can move the data after a while. I currently have a bunch of drives scattered and was hoping to streamline the system a bit by having larger drives.

                    • 9. Re: Will an ssd help?
                      JFPhoton Level 3

                      If your current USB 3 port is UASP compatible, ( most recent ones are), you can use a Samsung T3 external SSD which will run at over 400MB/sec read and write, ( far faster than your internal "fusion" drive). The older T1 will do the same thing....using the UASP protocol to get the higher speed from a conventional USB3 port, which normally would top out at around 200MB/sec transfer rate.

                       

                      I have one that has worked fine.....much cheaper than a Thunderbolt external enclosure. You should start by :

                       

                      1. replacing your boot drive with a quality SSD, like a Samsung 850 Pro...hybrid drives are a joke.

                       

                      2. 2GB of video memory is insufficient for working with 4K video....its needs far more video memory for "frame buffering" and other things. A minimum would be 4 GB,but, 6 or even 8 is far better.....the 2 GB is definitely a bottleneck with 4K. If possible, install a better NVidia GPU, like the 1070, to be able to use " Mercury Playback Acceleration" which speeds certain effects and operations like scaling by a factor of TEN !!!

                      • 10. Re: Will an ssd help?
                        RoninEdits Most Valuable Participant

                        i think there still is no support for the gtx 1000 series in macOS.

                        • 11. Re: Will an ssd help?
                          jdecker1978 Level 1

                          It seems you are telling me I need a new computer JFPhoton. Its an iMac, you can't upgrade the video card. I find it hard to imagine I can't do any 4k editing on it.

                          • 12. Re: Will an ssd help?
                            RoninEdits Most Valuable Participant

                            which cpu is in that imac?

                            • 13. Re: Will an ssd help?
                              jdecker1978 Level 1

                              4 ghz and 32gb ram.

                              • 14. Re: Will an ssd help?
                                JFPhoton Level 3

                                CPU and amount of system memory is fine.  Most video encoding and decoding is done by the CPU. With PPro, however, there IS the " Mercury Playback" feature which DOES use "CUDA acceleration" to dramatically improve performance, ( i.e. prevent "chugging,etc.). It is provided by NVidia GPUs only.

                                     This acceleration is limited to certain effects and certain operations like " scaling", an example of which would be taking a timeline edited in 4K and exporting it as a 1080p video. There are many operations where the CUDA acceleration is NOT used.

                                       PPro DOES make use of the "open CL" present on the AMD GPUs, but, it does not compare to what occurs with the NVidia GPUs.

                                No, you DON"T need a " new computer". If you can install a newer video card that has at least 4 GB video ram, that would help.

                                     I do not know much about Macs.

                                I DO know that drive speed is VERY important to performance, especially when working with 4K. That is where you can make a dramatic improvement by making sure your media, project files, exports, and previews are all on a separate SSD from the "boot drive SSD". An external T3 SSD will work on the USB 3 port, and if the budget allows, an even faster external drive over thunderbolt will do even better.

                                  So, just change your video card, if possible, AND implement an all SSD solution for your drive system involving active video editing or exporting.

                                • 15. Re: Will an ssd help?
                                  JFPhoton Level 3

                                  Ahhhh......I just learned a LOT about what it takes to upgrade an iMac and I was NOT aware of the tremendous difficulty !!

                                   

                                  Below is a link to a video by Linus Tech Tips where he attempts to upgrade an iMac :

                                   

                                  iMac 5K Hardware Upgrade - iSwitched to Mac Part 2 - YouTube

                                   

                                  I guess the lesson is : when buying an Apple product, you MUST make sure it is equipped from the start to handle the work you intend to do with it. Unlike Windows machines, which are EASY to upgrade......these machines are EXTREMELY difficult to upgrade.

                                   

                                  You  may need to trade your machine or sell it in order to get one better equipped.

                                  • 16. Re: Will an ssd help?
                                    Meg The Dog Adobe Community Professional

                                    JFPhoton  wrote

                                    You  may need to trade your machine or sell it in order to get one better equipped.

                                    or just use the proxy workflow.

                                     

                                     

                                    MtD

                                    • 17. Re: Will an ssd help?
                                      JFPhoton Level 3

                                      ...which is a PAIN !

                                      • 18. Re: Will an ssd help?
                                        jdecker1978 Level 1

                                        I just bought a Samsung Pro SSD. In the thunderbolt enclosure the read time test shows 330 vs 530 with my internal fusion. ??

                                        • 19. Re: Will an ssd help?
                                          jdecker1978 Level 1

                                          This should be last request for information. So the SSD clocking at 330 vs 530 for the fusion. The fusions write speeds are however much slower. If I decide to keep it does it make more sense for the boot drive to be the fusion or SSD? The other drive will contain the project files. I don't know where the speed is more important. Thanks everyone.

                                          • 20. Re: Will an ssd help?
                                            JFPhoton Level 3

                                            As Reagan used to say :  " Ah....well".   It appears these numbers don't make sense to most Windows users,but, below is an article which explains the speed of a fusion drive.

                                             

                                            Lab Tests: Pushing a Fusion Drive to its limits | Macworld

                                             

                                            It appears that for about a 100GB data transfer, the fusion drive behaves like an SSD, then, the rate drops to around 80MB/sec as the SSD portion of the drive reaches its capacity and gives way to the attached spinning hard drive, when being written to.

                                             

                                            The external SSD may be limited by its SATA III interface inside the Thunderbolt enclosure, which is why I suggested the T1,or,T3 if not going for a RAID setup in the external enclosure.

                                             

                                            Although the speeds are not ideal, they are far better than any spinning HDDs and should provide for decent editing. If the iMac permits you to view CPU usage and GPU usage real time as you work, you can see if either becomes "saturated" to a full 100% usage, indicating a "bottleneck"

                                             

                                            I use either GPU -Z,or, MSI Afterburner to monitor my GPU on my Windows rig, ( both free programs). To monitor the CPU usage i just use the Windows provided "task manager".....I do not know how it is done on a Mac, but, I'm sure there is something provided.

                                             

                                            If it turns out that the CPU still has "headroom" left as you render previews,or, export video and the GPU is maxxed out at a solid 100%, THEN you may want to use the "proxy workflow" recommended above, or, transcode the clips to a more "edit friendly codec" to see if that makes a difference.

                                            • 21. Re: Will an ssd help?
                                              jdecker1978 Level 1

                                              Thanks much. After going back through the thread I decided to return this and go for the T3. Crazy that USB-3 will beat the speed of this Lacie thunderbolt. Also that the samsung external is cheaper than the internal!

                                              • 22. Re: Will an ssd help?
                                                Alan Craven Level 4

                                                Thunderbolt is a very fast data transfer in/out system.  It cannot transfer data faster than the rate allowed by the drive inside the box!

                                                 

                                                With spinning disks, there is virtually no rate gain in practice over USB3 unless you have a striped RAID array in there.

                                                • 23. Re: Will an ssd help?
                                                  jdecker1978 Level 1

                                                  We are talking about a Samsung 850 pro SSD so the drive inside the box is not the issue. I found on lacies website their fastest thunderbolt drives go 387 mbs. The Samsung t3 should do 400+ through USB 3.