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The biggest increase in speed of Rendering will come from a processor upgrade.
However, depending on your OS and your MoBo configuration, there will be a measurable increase in general editing speed with more RAM, which might be cheaper right now. The same can be said for upgrading the I/O to multiple, physical HDDs, which are also cheap. One caveat here is to look closely at your existing controller chip(s), and what it/they can handle.
Still, general speed and stability can be more inexpensively obtained, by following Steve's tips on system optimization, found in the FAQ's.
Unless one is having re-draw problems (driver updates often cure these), there is little to be gained by upgrading the GPU/VRAM of the video card.
Were it me, and assuming XP-Pro (OS), I'd go for the I/O increase, then the RAM and finally the CPU.
I'm with you, Hunt.
Although I'm surprised, with your current rig, you're not having a lot of success editing HDV. (AVCHDs can take considerably more power to edit.)
You don't say which operating system you're using, but Vista can certainly use some tweaking to take full advantage of your hardware. And, particularly with Vista, 4 gigs of RAM can help.
I'm editing HDV using XP Pro, not AVCHD. It only slows considerably when I'm using three or more video tracks. It is mainly the redrawing of the individual pictures in the timeline itself which causes the delay. I have no real concern about rendering in HD as I've seen how slow it is even on CS3 using a quad core processor.
What is the I/O to which you both refer?
I have 4x1TB SATA II's + 1TB ATA100 in my I/O (Input/Output).
My OS & programs, + archived Assets (SFX, etc.) + Page File (part a) on C:\
My media on the ATA100 HDD H:\
My Project + Scratch Disks on D:\
My Audio + Page File (part b) on E:\
My Exports, etc. on F:\
Were I building a new system, I'd have C:\ smaller and as fast as I could get, and then add another large HDD for the archived Assets.
Now, I am doing SD, and no flavor of HD. If I were doing any HD work, I'd probably look at my "Media" disk being some form of RAID. I might also look into doing a RAID for the Export disc(s), as well. These would be through a PCIe controller card, i.e. hardware RAID. I'm talking about a perfect world, just after I win the Powerball jackpot.
With re-draw issues, you *might* benefit from a newer video card.
<Geoff_Alexander@adobeforums.com> wrote in message<br />news:email@example.comNXanI<br /><br />> Which upgrade would result in the biggest speed increase<br />> when editing HD?<br /><br />Depends what your bottleneck is.<br /><br />> PE7 currently using 2.33 dual core, 2 gig RAM. Upgrading<br />> ram, processor type or graphics card, which would show<br />> the largest performance increase when editing?<br /><br />The graphics card would be the least generally effective.<br /><br />Processor upgrades speed rendering, whether for export or editing.<br /><br />Past 2 GB, RAM can make multitasking with other apps faster.