15 Replies Latest reply on Aug 26, 2009 2:05 AM by yenaphe

    After Effects very slow - would love some help

    netrate

      Ok,

       

      Here is my system :

       

      Vista 64 Ult.

      Q6600

      P5Q-E

      8 gig of RAM

      Geforce GSO 9600

       

      I am working with a project that is 1500 X 1050 (approx) - it contains some camera moves and some page peel effects on pictures - and it is running unbearably slow...

       

      I have enabled Disk caching to a separate SATA drive - also I notice that when I am running CS3 - is saying it only recognizes 4 gigs of RAM.

      I have also enable Multiprocess for frames.  Now, I am not even close to a regular user of After Effects, so this might come as obvious, but what can I do here?  Is there a set of steps to help me speed this up?  I did take a look at

      http://help.adobe.com/en_US/AfterEffects/9.0/WSF13D6BED-C53B-408a-B2D6-C8B4205D4FB7a.html

      for improving performance and I did try to touch on most of the points I could understand like making my virtual drive space to 2X the amount of RAM.

       

      Now, I am trying to precompose most of my elements, but I don't know if that is overkill.  Really, I just want to ensure that with my new system, it was worth the money and upgrade.

        • 1. Re: After Effects very slow - would love some help
          yenaphe Level 4

          I've got about the same PC specs and AE is running fine.

           

          Have you enabled Open GL ?

          The 4gb detection, do you see it on the splash screen at startup, or on the memery preference panel ?

           

          When do you say "slow", what is slow exactly. The UI response, or the calculation time, or something else ?

          • 2. Re: After Effects very slow - would love some help
            Mylenium Most Valuable Participant

            4 GB is correct - after all, AE still is just a 32bit app. Multiprocessing will not do anything for you except for RAM previews and final rendering, so turn it off. Just on the contrary - on a system with only 8GB, the other 3 processes will split the remaining 4GB amongst each other and each of them may suffocate in the process. that aside, I think Sébastien is pretty close with suspecting OpenGL as the culprit here. Loading the buffers may not work as fast as required or you may be using accelerated effects that consume all resources. Especially since you use pre-comps, anyway, using OpenGL may have no benefits at all. nested compositions are rendered in softeware mode in CS3 and only after that passed on to the main comp which may use OpenGL. Another thing, and you need to tell us that, could be the source footage types you are using. There are various specific MPEG-2 and MPEG-4 formats as used by digital consumer cameras, that AE is not so good at handling. This also includes AVCHD for instance. Your problem here is that you are on CS3; several of that stuff has been improved considerably in CS4. If thaT's indeed the case, just try it and convert one of the clips to a normal Quicktime file. That way you can at least be halfway sure, that performance is good enough for the effects themselves and it's really just a problem with the source files...

             

            Mylenium

            • 3. Re: After Effects very slow - would love some help
              netrate Level 1

              I have an open GL card, but when I go to preferences, it says that "there is no OPEN GL card found".  I have all of the newest drivers as well for my video card.

              The 4gig detection is at startup and during render.

              Ok, to render out 2 mintues of video, it took approx 25 minutes.

              • 4. Re: After Effects very slow - would love some help
                netrate Level 1

                I do want multiprocessing for rendering don't I?  (That is where my computer is really lagging.)

                I was only using pre-comps because I thought that might speed things up.  Do you think this was a mistake?

                I am using only photographs (so psd and some jpg).  The largest size for a photo would be approx 720X720.  The comp size is approx 1500 X 1050.

                • 5. Re: After Effects very slow - would love some help
                  yenaphe Level 4

                  Do you use any heavy effects in your video (blur, noise, color correction). 25minutes doesn't seem that much of a time for rendering.

                   

                  it's about 2,4 frames / seconds, sounds pretty descent to me no ?

                  • 6. Re: After Effects very slow - would love some help
                    netrate Level 1

                    The only effect I have is CC page turn.  Nothing else.  I was going to use DROP SHADOW, but I was afraid it was going to increase my render times.

                    • 7. Re: After Effects very slow - would love some help
                      Mylenium Most Valuable Participant

                      As Sébastien said, 24 minutes is not that bad at all. Yes, of course you would want multiprocessing for final rendering, but consider a few things:

                       

                      - If you use heavy effects, the memory required for each instance can considerably go up. At 8bpc a frame at the size you're using already takes about 35 MB and some effects, especially glows and blurs, can easily expand/ dilate the layer's internal buffer by multiples, resulting in even more memory being used.

                       

                      - MP rendering may actually be slower than single core rendering, if your output format is a movie clip. because frames need to be stored in sequence, there will be situations, where one instance will have to wait for another to finish before proceding to the next chunk of frames.

                       

                      - Some CoDecs are not particularly MP friendly. A few of them will even cause crahses, others will reduce the threading performance of your machine.

                       

                      The rest should not really matter that much. CC Page Turn is not that computationally intensive and adding a drop shadow should have almost no influence. You may even negate its impact fully by using the corresponding layer style instead of the effect. They it's slightly faster.

                       

                      Mylenium

                      • 8. Re: After Effects very slow - would love some help
                        netrate Level 1

                        First off, thank you for all the help.  It is slowly sinking in.

                         

                        "- MP rendering may actually be slower than single core rendering, if your output format is a movie clip. because frames need to be stored in sequence, there will be situations, where one instance will have to wait for another to finish before proceding to the next chunk of frames."

                         

                        If I am reading this right, you are saying an image sequnce is going to be faster then a avi or mov?  I just tried a PNG sequence that estimated over 1 hour.  Maybe jpg would be betteR?

                         

                         

                         

                        - "Some CoDecs are not particularly MP friendly. A few of them will even cause crahses, others will reduce the threading performance of your machine."

                         

                        I am rendering out either Quicktime or uncompressed AVI

                         

                         

                        "The rest should not really matter that much. CC Page Turn is not that computationally intensive and adding a drop shadow should have almost no influence. You may even negate its impact fully by using the corresponding layer style instead of the effect. They it's slightly faster."

                         

                        Could you please explain what you mean by "negate its impact fully by using the corresponding layer style instead of the effect. They it's slightly faster"?

                         

                         

                        I have wiggle, page turn and drop shadow and it has increased the computational time for me.  Right now this comp is 5:56 and to render out to quicktime, it is taking 34 minutes (24 fps stretched to 720X540 NTSC).  I am not sure the ratio that I should be looking for, but that seems a little long for me.

                         

                         

                         

                         

                        Can you tell me if the comp size makes a difference when I am rendering out 720X540?  The main challenge for me is that I have about another 10 minutes to add to the project.  I don't want this to take me 2 hours to render out 15 minutes!

                         

                         

                         

                        I am going to OC my Q6600 slight, to see if there is any effect.  Another issue I am running into is that AE says my Graphics card is not an OPENGL card.  But the package says it is!

                         

                         

                        ""
                        • 9. Re: After Effects very slow - would love some help
                          yenaphe Level 4

                          If I am reading this right, you are saying an image sequnce is going to be faster then a avi or mov?  I just tried a PNG sequence that estimated over 1 hour.  Maybe jpg would be betteR?

                           

                          You are right. Plus if your render crashes you won't have to re-render the already rendered frames. PNG is lossless quality where JPEG is lossy quality. Depending on the compression setting, the computation from the calculated jpg frame can be lower than the computation time for PNG. You can try on a 30 sec portion to see what is faster.

                           

                          Another thing to take into account is the writing speed of the file on your HDD. If you are rendering on the same disk where the sources are, or on  a USB external drive, it will take more time than rendering on an internal sata/e-stata drive or a raid array. In image sequence, this is more important as AE have to write/close a file for each frame, and depending on your configuration (windows,mac, antivirus, timemachine...) it can make a huge difference. If on PC try to disconnect it from the web and turn of your antivirus. You will save time. Turn off disk indexing too. On mac time machine is also slowing the thing down, and finder have a very important (to me) problem with the way it handle large amount of files. So with 6min video a 24fps you will have 8544 files. Finder will slow down the writing speed incrementially, and you will start to notice the difference starting at the 1000th frame.

                           

                          I know that you are on PC, but if people on mac have the same issue than you, they'll be able to investigate


                          Could you please explain what you mean by "negate its impact fully by using the corresponding layer style instead of the effect. They it's slightly faster"?

                           

                          Instead of using the drop shadow effect, right clic on your layer in the time line menu and select "Layer style > Drop shadow". It will have the same behavior/options than the Photoshop counterpart. It's better and faster than the drop shadow effect.

                           

                          I have wiggle, page turn and drop shadow and it has increased the computational time for me.  Right now this comp is 5:56 and to render out to quicktime, it is taking 34 minutes (24 fps stretched to 720X540 NTSC).  I am not sure the ratio that I should be looking for, but that seems a little long for me.

                           

                          Adding an effect or an expression always increase the computational time. But the layer style drop shadow increase it less than drop shadow effect. Also you are stretching your composition, and that takes computational time too. You should have worked directly at the right comp resolution.

                           

                          A good way to know what step takes more time than the other (and a good way to figure out what part of the process you have to optimise) is twirling down, in the render queue the "current render" line. It will tell you for every frame, what the rendering is actually doing. The longer the step, the longer it's name will stay on screen.

                           

                          Can you tell me if the comp size makes a difference when I am rendering out 720X540?  The main challenge for me is that I have about another 10 minutes to add to the project.  I don't want this to take me 2 hours to render out 15 minutes!

                           

                          Well it probably will. 2 hours of rendering for 15minutes is not that bad. You're doing motion graphics, not editing. Also, if your pictures are jpeg, it add computational time, because the render have to decompress it in memory in order to work with it. If you have disk space, you'd rather like to convert all your jpeg to uncompressed tiff files, so the render engine will just have to load it in memory in order to press it.

                           

                          Working with uncompressed assets, and exporting to uncompressed data should be the best for any render engine. But is your disks are slow (extarnal, same as source data, etc...) the read/write process can be longer than the decompressing process. It's not an easy task to figure out which is the fastest. I know it can seems slow, but really, a 2h render for 15 minutes, based on what you described us, is not really that bad.

                           

                          I am going to OC my Q6600 slight, to see if there is any effect.  Another issue I am running into is that AE says my Graphics card is not an OPENGL card.  But the package says it is!

                           

                          Have you downloaded the latest drivers for your card yet ? If not try to do so, restart your PC and check again into AE.

                          • 10. Re: After Effects very slow - would love some help
                            netrate Level 1

                            Thanks for all the effort and time.  I think I might be getting somewhere with your help.

                             

                            "You are right. Plus if your render crashes you won't have to re-render the already rendered frames. PNG is lossless quality where JPEG is lossy quality. Depending on the compression setting, the computation from the calculated jpg frame can be lower than the computation time for PNG. You can try on a 30 sec portion to see what is faster."

                             

                            I haven't tried JPG yet but I will.  I want to have something that I can output to DVD with decent quality. Right now .mov looks good, but will try the JPGS.

                             

                             

                            Another thing to take into account is the writing speed of the file on your HDD. If you are rendering on the same disk where the sources are, or on  a USB external drive, it will take more time than rendering on an internal sata/e-stata drive or a raid array. In image sequence, this is more important as AE have to write/close a file for each frame, and depending on your configuration (windows,mac, antivirus, timemachine...) it can make a huge difference.

                             

                            I have a separate SATA drive for disk caching.  I did that right away.  I was wondering about the memory caching though in the preferences panel - I am not sure if I should just leave the defaults for that :

                            MAX MEMORY USAGE

                            MAX DISK CACHE SIZE

                             

                            "If on PC try to disconnect it from the web and turn of your antivirus."

                             

                            My rendering computer is not connected to the internet, so I don't have an anti-virus running on it.  It only get programs from my internet computer that have been thoroughly checked first.


                            You will save time. Turn off disk indexing too.

                             

                            How do I do this on a PC?


                            Could you please explain what you mean by "negate its impact fully by using the corresponding layer style instead of the effect. They it's slightly faster"?

                             

                            Instead of using the drop shadow effect, right clic on your layer in the time line menu and select "Layer style > Drop shadow". It will have the same behavior/options than the Photoshop counterpart. It's better and faster than the drop shadow effect.

                             

                            I will try this.  Thanks

                             

                            A good way to know what step takes more time than the other (and a good way to figure out what part of the process you have to optimise) is twirling down, in the render queue the "current render" line. It will tell you for every frame, what the rendering is actually doing. The longer the step, the longer it's name will stay on screen.

                             

                            That is a great tip.

                             

                            Can you tell me if the comp size makes a difference when I am rendering out 720X540?  The main challenge for me is that I have about another 10 minutes to add to the project.  I don't want this to take me 2 hours to render out 15 minutes!

                             

                            Well it probably will. 2 hours of rendering for 15minutes is not that bad. You're doing motion graphics, not editing. Also, if your pictures are jpeg, it add computational time, because the render have to decompress it in memory in order to work with it. If you have disk space, you'd rather like to convert all your jpeg to uncompressed tiff files, so the render engine will just have to load it in memory in order to press it.

                             

                            That is another great idea.  I didn't know that TIFF were better.

                             

                             

                            I am going to OC my Q6600 slight, to see if there is any effect.  Another issue I am running into is that AE says my Graphics card is not an OPENGL card.  But the package says it is!

                             

                            Have you downloaded the latest drivers for your card yet ? If not try to do so, restart your PC and check again into AE."

                             

                            Yes, I have the newest drivers (it is a new card and I had to go to the NVIDIA site just to get them.  The problem is that I have posted on the NVIDIA board days ago about this issue and no one has given me an answer yet concerning this.  I just checked again with AE - it says. "NO COMPATIBLE OPENGL CARD FOUND"

                             

                            It is an Nvidia 9600 GSO 768Mg video card.

                             

                             

                             

                            • 11. Re: After Effects very slow - would love some help
                              Adolfo Rozenfeld Adobe Employee
                              I do want multiprocessing for rendering don't I?

                              Most of the time, you want it to be on. It takes some time to initialize (once per session), but after that RAM previews and renders should be much speedier, depending on the nature of the source elements. For example, one exception  is a Comp where most of the items are footage (ie, video) layers. In such cases, disk speed would be the bottle neck - it's unlikely that a disk system will be able to feed all four cores adequately. For projects where you have a few footage items, and a lot of graphics & effects (typical in motion graphics and compositing) the Render Multiple Frames Simulataneously feature should give very noticeable improvement in rendering times. The other exceptions, of course, are features that turn are incompatble with multiprocessing. For more information, see When After Effects temporarily disables multiprocessing with Render Multiple Frames Simultaneously in After Effects Help.

                               

                              8 GB of RAM is no luxury, but no that bad for a quad-core system.

                               

                              Ok, to render out 2 mintues of video, it took approx 25 minutes.

                               

                              It depends on the nature of your project.

                              My typical animation for commercial/feature film DVDs is 45-60 seconds long, and they usually take 60-90 mintues to render on average (and they are strictly Standard Definition, with a lower pixel count). So, the timings you mention could not be bad at all.

                               

                              Can you tell me if the comp size makes a difference when I am rendering out 720X540?  The main challenge for me is that I have about another 10 minutes to add to the project.  I don't want this to take me 2 hours to render out 15 minutes!

                               

                              Compared to 1500x1050? Most definitely! There could be drastic time savings there.

                              Now, why are you rendering 1500x1050 or 720x540? What's your final delivery medium?

                              I agree with others. 2 hours for 15 minutes it's not bad - it's about 8x real time.

                              • 12. Re: After Effects very slow - would love some help
                                Lisa01707 Level 1

                                Hi all

                                 

                                I am having a similar problem but am using CS4 and its the preview thats taking sooooooo long even when i scroll through the movie in the time lime its dead slow, plus for each time I want to view it, it does not save the rendering it already did the 1st time I previwed my movie, so have to wait all over again.

                                Effect am using is the lighting and glow effects.

                                 

                                Could this be a processor speed problem?

                                 

                                My comp specs:-

                                 

                                Win XP

                                 

                                Chip Type:    
                                Pentium D
                                        Processor Speed:    
                                3,200 MHz
                                   
                                Memory (RAM):    
                                3200.0
                                        Hard Drive Capacity:    
                                80 GB

                                Graphics:-  g force graphics card 8400 gs

                                • 13. Re: After Effects very slow - would love some help
                                  Mylenium Most Valuable Participant

                                  I've completely lost track and I'm too lazy to read everything. @Lisa: I don't think your system is really cut out for CS4. Your computer is, in al lfairness, pretty old and, to make things worse, has one of those trimmed down "budget" GeForce models. The best you can do is to simply remove the OpenGL plug-in (C:\Program Files\Adobe\After Effects CS4\Support Files\Plug-Ins\Extensions\AE_OpenGL.aex) and see if it helps in any way. If not, your best bet is to go back to an older version of AE (assuming you are not talking about using the trial and have an older version) until you can upgrade/ replace your computer hardware.

                                   

                                  Mylenium

                                  • 14. Re: After Effects very slow - would love some help
                                    Lisa01707 Level 1

                                    Oh !*&&*&((*"

                                     

                                    Sorry I just bought this PC thinkin its the latest and find that its a pile of poop

                                     

                                    So what should I be running so I am not wasting my time and money on sh*t like this?

                                     

                                    Lisa x

                                    • 15. Re: After Effects very slow - would love some help
                                      yenaphe Level 4

                                      You should be using a Intel core 2 duo @ 2,5-3gb with a 64bit (if possible) operating system and with 4gb of ram and a recent graphic card for opengl.

                                       

                                      On your PC specs, i would use an AE 7 or maybe a CS3, but as soon as you'll try some heavy compositing, or as soon as you start using heavy effects (procedral effects like fractal noise, blurs, and keying tools such as keylight) it will be slow anyway. I wouldn't do any HD stuff for exemple.