13 Replies Latest reply on May 20, 2012 9:16 AM by Jim_Simon

    Has CS6 fixed the PPro with AE dynamic links slow to render problems?

    cfg_2451 Level 2

      I've got PPro with AE dynamic links slow to render problems similar to those discussed in this thread:

       

      http://forums.adobe.com/thread/904652?start=0&tstart=0

       

      As I understand it (and I could well be wrong), if I render a PPro project that has AE projects dynamically linked in (anything from simple lower thirds to color grading), during rendering the AE bits run as a service, which limits the AE bits to a single CPU and effectively stops simultaneous rendering of multiple frames. This is why I can get very high render times (essentially no parallel processing), and why messing with the number of CPUs allowed for simultaneous frame rendering, or the amount of RAM said CPUs can access, has little to no effect on total render time.

       

      Supposedly as some point AE was going to be changed such that it used Media Encoder to do it's rendering (same as PPro does), thus speeding up rendering for any PPro project that has AE parts dynamically linked in.

       

      Has this been done in CS6? If not, any idea when that's scheduled to happen?

        • 1. Re: Has CS6 fixed the PPro with AE dynamic links slow to render problems?
          Jim_Simon Level 8

          Supposedly as some point AE was going to be changed such that it used Media Encoder to do it's rendering (same as PPro does)

           

          On a side note, to the best of my knowledge, PP has never used AME for rendering, which in most contexts means creating a preview file within PP.

           

          AME was used for exporting, getting files out of PP.

           

          (I do wish Adobe staff would keep this distinction mind when creating their videos.  When I saw one about the new background rendering in PP, I was interested, only to learn that he was actually talking about background exporting, a feature PP has had since AME was introduced in CS4.)

          • 2. Re: Has CS6 fixed the PPro with AE dynamic links slow to render problems?
            TradeWind Level 3

            Jim Simon wrote:

             

            (I do wish Adobe staff would keep this distinction mind when creating their videos.  When I saw one about the new background rendering in PP, I was interested, only to learn that he was actually talking about background exporting, a feature PP has had since AME was introduced in CS4.)

             

            The distinction is not so distinct, and this is an industry issue, not really Adobe. After Effects has a render queue, which is used for exporting, but you can also export. Lightwave has this, even Avid. The terms do have their own distinct meanings, but of course context is usually required. So usually "rendering previews" or "rendering final output" serve as context-sensitive uses of the term.

             

            Terminology abuse is widespread, even people with video cameras now call themselves "filmmakers" and people who produce films never shown nor intended for a cinema call themselves "cinematographers." ENG video producers are called "photogs" and news photographers are called "photojournalists."

             

            Transcoding, encoding, rendering, exporting....mish-mashed unfortunately, but thankfully most people can figure out what's meant.

             

            Back to the OP - After Effects can be used with Adobe Media Encoder, it's just not the default. You can import any composition into AME from AE and render your encoded export.

             

            As for background rendering....I remember when Pinnacle Liquid was the first to the table with that feature back in 2004 or 2005. It seemed awesome, except that you needed a ton of spare hard drive space and lots of processing to keep the background rendering going...effecitvely your processor was in use 100% of the time. When you weren't scrubbing or playing back, Liquid was rendering previews. Of course, you could use those previews during export but you rarely would have wanted to do so, since it was better quality to reference the original data when compositing the layers and effects to output to a web file, for instance. Then  you had to keep cleaning up the preview cache.

             

            I rarely render previews at all, and when I do it's just a small segment at a time, just to get a full look at the final composite. Mercury Playback is usually more than capable of playing back most of my edits the rest of the time.

            • 3. Re: Has CS6 fixed the PPro with AE dynamic links slow to render problems?
              Jim_Simon Level 8

              lots of processing to keep the background rendering going

               

              I still think it's important to make things clear whenever possible.  For instance, it seems to me what you're talking about is automatic background rendering, which is distinct from background rendering.  The first happens without any user intervention, the second happens only after being manually initiated.

               

              That's a BIG difference in how the feature works, and it's important to make that distinction.  I'd hate to see automatic background rendering in any Adobe program.  But I (and I suspect many others) would LOVE to see genuine background rendering, the ability to manually initiate a render (preview file for use inside of PP), and keep on working while that happens in the background.

               

              So I think you can see my disappointment when the Adobe video segment was actually talking about background exporting, a concept which is not genuinely "new" to the CS6 suite.

              • 4. Re: Has CS6 fixed the PPro with AE dynamic links slow to render problems?
                TradeWind Level 3

                Jim Simon wrote:

                 

                But I (and I suspect many others) would LOVE to see genuine background rendering, the ability to manually initiate a render (preview file for use inside of PP), and keep on working while that happens in the background.

                 

                 

                To borrow your own typical response, there are about 100 or so different things that would be more worth the attention of the program developers and I'd hate to see resources being spent on what is increasingly an unnecessary task such as rendering previews. Of course, it's still of higher importance to me than Matroska support, which seems to tickle the fancy of some recent forum contributors.

                 

                At any rate, if it really was something that others would love, you should encourage the others who share your desire for this feature to file a feature request. As Todd often points out, those feature requests are always viewed and if it's really important to many users, it will be addressed one way or the other. If it's only a margin of the users who need this feature, then it will receive the comensurate amount of attention from development.

                • 5. Re: Has CS6 fixed the PPro with AE dynamic links slow to render problems?
                  TradeWind Level 3

                  To the OP - I think that the generally accepted workflow is to use AE comps in Premiere Pro as placeholders while edits are ongoing, but then to replace those DL segments in Premiere Pro with fully rendered files after the final reviews are completed on the sequence. I suppose that's partially due to the issue you are discussing, but I was never really aware of it that specifically before because I usually would render final files from AE and replace the AE comps in PPro before completing the project.

                   

                  I have made exceptions to that rule (very short title/intro animations for my company that are frequently used, and very short.....or for very basic title sequences that didn't use a lot of system resources anyway). If it is as you say it is and the AE background rendering into Premiere is being handled that way, then I'd also like to see that change (and perhaps it has with CS6...we'll know soon enough).

                  • 6. Re: Has CS6 fixed the PPro with AE dynamic links slow to render problems?
                    cfg_2451 Level 2

                    Christian Jolly wrote:

                     

                    I think that the generally accepted workflow is to use AE comps in Premiere Pro as placeholders while edits are ongoing, but then to replace those DL segments in Premiere Pro with fully rendered files after the final reviews are completed on the sequence.

                     

                    This is my understanding of the workflow before dynamic links. And it's what I'm trying to avoid. I thought (rightly or wrongly) that one of the purposes of dynamic linking was to fix this very problem -- to make rendering intermediate files unneccessary. Which is why I would think that Adobe would fix this eventually. I guess you're right though -- I'll have to wait on my copy of CS6 to find out.

                    • 7. Re: Has CS6 fixed the PPro with AE dynamic links slow to render problems?
                      cfg_2451 Level 2

                      I think I've got my answer now, and the answer is that this is still broken in CS6. Still acts exactly as it does in CS5, as described above in this tread.

                       

                      I guess I don't understand the point of dynamic linking if "replace with AE comp" causes this kind of performance degradation. It's about two orders of magnitude for this particular project I'm working on. This is the difference between taking 10.25 seconds per frame to export, vs. 9.5 frames per second. That's what I mean by broken. Sigh...

                      • 8. Re: Has CS6 fixed the PPro with AE dynamic links slow to render problems?
                        jstrawn Adobe Employee

                        @ Jim, et al...

                         

                        Agreed, there is confusion, which at times is being exacerbated by our own product envangizing efforts, between real-time playback rendering, preview file rendering and export rendering... (any others?) I never liked that term anyways because the only real rendering to me involves a pig and a big boiler. But to be clear, Adobe Dynamic Link is using After Effects' renderer (forgot the tech term for it) to play your linked AE sequences back in PrPro.

                         

                        @ cfg: I've done a lot of workflow scenarios with AE sequences dynamically linked into PrPro CS6 and haven't had any playback issues that I wasn't seeing while viewing the sequence directly in AE. Butt admittedly, I'm a software professional and not a video/effects professional, so my skills and bandwidth in that area are limited compared to our industrial-strength users. I may not be pushing the performance limits as much as you are. The point is that I can't answer directly whther the problems you were seeing will be improved for you in CS6 or not. But, if you have a mind to upgrade anyways, please let us know what your experience is. If you continue to have workflow breakage there, then that's definately bug-worthy so that we can try to get it fixed.

                        • 9. Re: Has CS6 fixed the PPro with AE dynamic links slow to render problems?
                          cfg_2451 Level 2

                          Jstrawn, I did let you know. This performance is the same in CS6 as CS5. I just veryified it on my machine with the upgrade.

                           

                          What I'm doing is fairly simple (I barely scratch the surface of a scratch on the surface of what all this software can do). I just bring in an AVCHD source file into PPro. Then "replace with AE comp" from PPro. Then apply the "remove grain" effect in AE, which causes AE to have to touch every single frame (I realize that doing this to an AVCHD file in AE might consitutue cruel and unusual punishment to AE because of the intense computational horsepower required to do it). Finally, I export said file from PPro using Media Encoder.

                           

                          That's it -- just round tripping from PPro to AE and back, then an export.

                           

                          The symptom is that it takes forever to process the file (right at 10.25 seconds per frame). No hardware bottle necks. Only about 30% CPU useage, about 2GB free memory, very low disk activity (lots of zero activity). What seems to be happening is that the AE software is the bottleneck -- it seems to be running on a single CPU as a "service". This has been discussed in a number of forums over the last few years -- I'm not close to an expert and don't really understand what's happening.

                           

                          What's needed is for this situation is perhaps for AE to run fully multi-threaded on all the CPUs, or to dedicate some of the CPUs to AE, or something. IDK.

                           

                          I did write up a new feature request on this for CS5 about a month ago. I can write up a new one for CS6 if you want.

                          • 11. Re: Has CS6 fixed the PPro with AE dynamic links slow to render problems?
                            cfg_2451 Level 2

                            jstrawn wrote:

                             

                            Are you cuda-enabled?

                             

                            Yes.

                            • 12. Re: Has CS6 fixed the PPro with AE dynamic links slow to render problems?
                              cfg_2451 Level 2

                              Turns out this is a "feature." A kind gent on the AE forum pointed me to a document I've already read countless times trying to figure this out and made me understand it finally:

                               

                              http://help.adobe.com/en_US/aftereffects/cs/using/WS92A6319B-B1EB-4b49-A09A-9FFE83E6CD37.h tml

                               

                              And it's right there in print at the bottom: "Note:  A linked After Effects composition will not support Render Multiple Frames Simultaneously multiprocessing" Emphasis mine.

                               

                              So the answer to my question is no. Adobe hasn't fixed this yet. I sure hope they do though. This is a serious performance killer at export time. Big enought to make using AE for anything that touches every frame (like color grading, or de-noising) completely useless to me. Sigh...

                               

                              And yes, I've made a feature request on this.

                              • 13. Re: Has CS6 fixed the PPro with AE dynamic links slow to render problems?
                                Jim_Simon Level 8

                                This is a serious performance killer at export time.

                                 

                                My testing belies that.  I actually got a faster export using the linked comp and going out through AME than I did exporting out of AE directly.

                                 

                                Assign whatever explanation you like, those are the results I'm seeing.