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In my experience the most contributing factor to load times is the number of media files in the project. As Premiere has to check every one of these, the more you have the longer the load. Things may be slight different with MPEG based media, I don't know.
Say you import a folder of 20 files, and wind up only using 7 in the sequence you're editing. Is there a utility for checking the files you don't use and eliminating them from the project?
> In my experience the most contributing factor to load times is the number of media files in the project
And also the number of edits.
Good point, Dan.
The Project Manager has been the "within Premiere" method of eliminating unused media files. Personally, I prefer to do this type of work myself manually.
In PP2, there is Project>Remove Unused. Probably in the same location in later versions.
You can also Edit Columns to show Video Usage & Audio Usage. I move these up the ladder so they appear right after the Label column. This change will be on a Project basis, and is not global for other Projects. I use these two columns to tell what has been used, and what has not. I'll usually go through the Project Panel, and manually delete Assets, after I check them closely. Project>Remove Unused does this automatically, but will remove ALL Assets that have not been used. Rely on this only when you know that you've used every Asset that you intend to, or you'll be re-Importing.