9 Replies Latest reply on Nov 28, 2016 8:07 PM by justinw15506037

    4core vs 6core vs 8core.....?

    landrvr1 Level 2

      Trying to find meaningful benchmarking between 4core, 6core, and 8core Xeon processors is next to impossible.


      Before we replace our 4cores with either 6core or 8core machines, we need to first determine whether or not there's any significant advantage in terms of After Effects performance.


      64bit.  16B RAM.


      Anyone know of some good tests/results?


      Adobe, what are your thoughts here?




        • 1. Re: 4core vs 6core vs 8core.....?
          Rick Gerard Adobe Community Professional & MVP

          From my experience, processor speed being the same, providing you have the same amount of ram per core, you won't quite see a doubling in speed going form 4 to 8 cores. With that many cores you need to also pay attention to read write speed for your disks. An array is critical and if you're using the network for rendering or media storage that will also have to be fine tuned for optimum performance.


          Throw in something like the new Background Renderer from Lloyd Alvarez and you'll find a significant increase in performance and output.

          • 2. Re: 4core vs 6core vs 8core.....?
            Todd_Kopriva Level 8

            As Rick says, if you have enough RAM and fast enough disks, then you can see a large improvement with additional cores. As Rick says, doubling the number of cores doesn't necessarily double the speed, but it does help.


            We haven't seen any significant performance improvements with more than 8 cores dedicated to After Effects, but given that we recommend reserving some CPUs for other applications, this still means that you can see performance gains up to 12 or so cores in a computer.


            There are some recommendations for memory settings and performance improvements here.

            • 3. Re: 4core vs 6core vs 8core.....?
              Mylenium Most Valuable Participant

              Trying to find meaningful benchmarking between 4core, 6core, and 8core Xeon processors is next to impossible.


              And rightfully so! Benchmarks in themselves are meaningless and since you didn't give any info about your kind of work, even Todd's and Rick's advice may not necessarily apply to your situation. There's just a lot more to consider - working with huge, memory intense footage would never use BG rendering sometimes and specific effects and plug-ins may impose otehr limitations, like anything related to OpenGL or CUDA generally being tricky to use with MP...



              • 4. Re: 4core vs 6core vs 8core.....?
                landrvr1 Level 2

                Yeah, tnx guys.


                I know I didn't provide any specs or info about the kind of work we do, but that was on purpose.  I was specifically looking for ANY benchmarking out there that would offer side by side comparisons on near same spec machines.  When quads were first offered there were actually some very interesting benchmarking studies done between the dual vs quad cores.  Done by all the usual suspects out there.


                While these tests don't in and of themselves prove anything in terms of an individual's specific challenges or needs, they are extremely helpful when trying to get more budget dollars out of IT.      An important first step in the process of budgeting, if you will.


                We are also running a ton of 3D Studio Max/VRay - where raw processing power is everything.


                I guess the only thing for us to do at this point is simply get a hex or octo core, sit it alongside a quad, and test.


                Still, I'm surprised there's virtually no comprehensive reviews of 6 and 8 cores vs 4.



                • 5. Re: 4core vs 6core vs 8core.....?
                  Mylenium Most Valuable Participant

                  Still, I'm surprised there's virtually no comprehensive reviews of 6 and 8 cores vs 4.


                  Pointless exercise... There's new processors coming out every three months as are auxiliary components like graphics cards. You would have to re-do all the tests constantly to halfway stay up to speed on latest developments and as I already hinted, given the variety of workflows, you couldn't settle on synthetic tests and then you introduce more bias into the tests because they suddenly become dependent on drive speed, bus speeds and whatnot. Likewise, different cameras would produce different footage types and encoding qualities and framerates, different 3D programs spit out different flavors of file formats and so on. I really don't think it will ever produce anything but contradictory results. It's an endless chain of potential caveats that need to be figured in. So in the end, at best you would only end up with an abstract performance index which presents an averaged result of multipel tests like the various SPEC tests, but never would you really be sure where you stand...



                  • 6. Re: 4core vs 6core vs 8core.....?
                    landrvr1 Level 2

                    Pointless, maybe.  At least from a standpoint of truly determining whether or not it's beneficial for someone with specific needs to upgrade.  But the path to upgrade has to start somewhere, and IT budgets need a starting point other than 'wow.  we can't afford that'.  We are in a constant situation of trying to convince our IT group to at least consider more consistent and powerful upgrade paths.


                    It's the age-old battle: You've got us artists on one side - who don't control equipment budgets - saying we'd like this because we believe it's going to be more productive.  You've got the IT dept on the other side who are tight fisted with the cash.  When you go to plead your case, you need SOMETHING other than "yeah, i think octos would be better than quads for us."  Hence the hunt for some sort of baseline benchmarking.


                    I'm not disagreeing with your logic at all.  What we are after is a meaningful way to start the conversation.  How do we do this without physically getting the machines, loading them up with the software, and running our real world tests?  I guess I'm not explaining any of this properly so...


                    What would you do?


                    If you're interested in upgrading from the current spec machine that you are given from IT, give me the steps you would take...

                    • 7. Re: 4core vs 6core vs 8core.....?
                      Stan Jones Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                      If you're interested in upgrading from the current spec machine that you are given from IT, give me the steps you would take...

                      I think that is the approach to take.  I personally have no suggestions.


                      But since you asked about benchmarking, and even though I think the realities of the following are validation of the problems with benchmarking described above,....


                      I spend more time with Premiere Pro, where the hardware pros and cons are pretty different from AE.  I always found it fascinating that there were not hardware testing tools provided as part of the software itself, not for the purpose of benchmarking as much as troubleshooting.  See http://ppbm5.com/ for the Premiere Pro tool developed by users.  I focused on it as a tool for troubleshooting (disk i/o vs processor problems), but the latest, somewhat intense, debate is using it as a way to debate Xeon vs ixxx vs Sandy Bridge etc.

                      • 8. Re: 4core vs 6core vs 8core.....?
                        BlackCalvus Level 1

                        I don't have an actual benchmark to give you, just my experience.


                        I do alot of work for a client that also has AE, so I'll do some of the work on their machine, and some on my own.

                        They have a 3GHz 8-core Mac (Intel 5400 series) with 4GB of RAM

                        I have a 3.2Ghz 8-core PC (Intel 5500) series with 48GB of RAM.


                        So although my CPU is a bit faster (0.2Ghz plus a newer chip), the difference is unlikely to be more than, say 25%


                        However my renders are easilly way faster.  A piece I did last week took close to 20 minutes to render a quarter resolution in 8-bit without colour management on their machine, and the final render 10-12minutes on my machine in full resolution, 16-bit with colour management.


                        The moral of the story is that more cores are worthwhile, but only if you have the memory to feed them.  For an 8 core I'd personally recommend at least 24GB.  If you only work in SD I'm sure you can get a way with less, but how many people will be doing that for much longer?


                        When you buy a new machine you often find that you have to pay a premium to get the fastest chip.  If your budget isn't limitless I'd go for a slightly slower machine and put more money in RAM.  I got all my RAM by buying a refurbished workstation with the previous generation (Intel 5500 series) CPU.  I'm pretty sure I'm better off than if I'd bought a brand spanking new Westmere (5600) with less RAM.


                        Hope that's of any help to you.

                        • 9. Re: 4core vs 6core vs 8core.....?
                          justinw15506037 Level 1

                          I have used 2, 4, and now 6 core processor (Intel i7-6800K @ 3.4Ghz, 16Gig RAM and 256GB solid state and 2TB)


                          Each time i upgrade, i immediately see benefits, running Photoshop, Dreamweaver, etc...


                          If you want to dedicate a little extra, increase processor CPU and GPU performance, a little trick...


                          Task Manager:

                          1) Set Priority (right click over program you want to increase speed, Win 10 from details pane in nav menu)

                          a) I set it at High (Win 10 has a realtime setting but worried about system stability)

                          i clocked the speed difference and noticed a considerable increase (7 seconds faster for assignment) in processing speed, very impressed, hope you will be too

                          b) I set it at above normal

                          Immediate increase in processor speed although the enhancement was nominal (3 seconds faster for assignment) compared to normal setting

                          c) Caution this may cause system instability, especially running multiple programs, or pushing your CPU/GPU limits, only do this if you know what your risking..."frying your motherboard"

                          In my case i purchased the fastest i could afford to buy, this 6 core, its great...but i wanted faster, so when i saw the system is barely utilizing even setting higher priority i felt comfortable continuing to do so, i do have 75k assignments saving 7 seconds each one sounds heavenly.


                          When in doubt, buy the best tools, they cost the most for a reason, they are the best, the will help make you the best at your trade.