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General After Effects Performance Based on Hardware

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Can Babalik
General After Effects Performance Based on Hardware
on Mar 14, 2018 at 9:24:04 am

Hello. I've been using after effects for years now but i still dont understand what kind of hardware and system configuration i need for optimal performance in some specific areas.

This screenshot was taken during a preview of a very simple trapcode form animation reacting to music.

Current Hardware:
amd ryzen 1800x
nvidia geforce gtx 780
samsung evo 850 120 gb
1 TB of hdd
32 gbs ram on 3600mhz

I know what ideally i should have bigger and multiple SSD's but as far as i know disk cache only has to do with previewing and not rendering.

So i thought maybe i need a better gpu since these are particle effects but my gpu isnt used much either. Maybe a bottleneck ?
I also know that many effects dont use multiple cpu cores .
I read somewhere that even for a starter you need 64 gbs of Ram. But the project is rendered in the cpu isnt it ?

Please tell me what i am missing, i hope i dont need a xeon cpu to be able to render simple to complex particle systems in optimal times..

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Walter Soyka
Re: General After Effects Performance Based on Hardware
on Mar 14, 2018 at 2:13:08 pm

There are a lot of cases where After Effects does not make efficient use of big hardware. In this case, your performance may be at least partially bound by Form itself. While the latest version of Particular is GPU-accelerated, I do not believe that's the case for Form.

I do see that your RAM is nearly full. Are you running any other apps, or is that just Ae using as much RAM as it can for caching?

For renders (not previews), you might try Mekajiki Render Garden, which basically does what the old Ae multiprocessing engine did:

Walter Soyka
Designer & Mad Scientist at Keen Live [link]
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
@keenlive [twitter]   |   RenderBreak [blog]   |   Profile [LinkedIn]

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Carlos Aldana
Re: General After Effects Performance Based on Hardware
on Mar 16, 2018 at 4:44:37 am

From that picture, it looks like you're running out of RAM. Do you have other apps open? If not, that's a lot of memory for one layer. You might want to bring the effect down or buy more RAM.

Yes, the project is rendered via the CPU, but for that to happen, the assets need to be put in memory. If it runs out of memory, it will put it in the hard drive or ssd, which is many times slower.

Generally speaking, it depends on the effect. Some are pretty CPU heavy while not using much memory. Others use a lot of memory, in which case your CPU usage goes down because it has to wait for the hard drive, ssd, etc.

As for GPUs, After Effects doesn't use them very much. Some effects are better at it, and they're slowly optimizing some of their effects. But they still have ways to go. For now is mostly CPU.

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