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Harry Bromley-Davenport
Graphics card issue
on Aug 20, 2016 at 3:07:11 am

Good evening, happy editors,

I'm editing on Adobe Premiere Pro CC 2015 and using a GTX 680 card. This does pretty well when I use hardly any plugins. However, if I pile in, say, 5 plugins, which is not enormous in my line of work, everything bogs down. When I make a change to a parameter in a plugin, it takes about 15 seconds to show up on the screen while the computer calculates.

This is an impossible situation. I can only assume that I need to upgrade my graphics card. My computer is not the fastest in the universe, but I think it is adequate. My problem may, of course, be caused by the appalling Adobe Premiere Pro CC. which I find buggy, temperamental and ... grrr. And when I use After Effects, I do not experience this kind of delay.

Please suggest something. I have tried making VIDEO PREVIEWS in Mp2 ... I have changed the setting "Performance" to "Memory" ... I have turned CUDA on and off.

Here are my specs:

Mac Pro 4,1. Early 2009.
32 MB Ram.
System drive is an SSD.
Graphics: Nvidia GTX 680 with 2 GB vram.
The drive set I'm currently using is 10TB RAID which runs pretty fast.
Yosemite 10.10.5.

I want to get hold of one of these new Nvidia 1060 or 1080 cards which I hope will run OK on my Mac ... is that so?



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Tom Laughlin
Re: Graphics card issue
on Aug 24, 2016 at 9:05:25 pm


I've had similar issues with my Mac Pro 5,1 (2010). What I found is, it is a combination of factors:

1. Ram
2. Graphics Card
4. Mac OS
5. Version of Premiere

I have found better performances through going from a Quadro 4000 to a GTX 780, faster, but not blazing fast. Premiere sometimes slows down, so delete the media cache and render files once a week. I have 64 GB RAM, so I'm not too worried about CUDA. I had a few cards that I've used in the past, that have to be CUDA-enabled at the card level first, then in Premiere. This involves downloading the 'correct' CUDA driver (incorrect drivers cause hangups or crashes, and once you download the correct CUDA driver, you also need to download the card's software utility, and ensure the card's prefs are checked for the functions you want it to perform on your computer, and running in the background. Certain Mac OS's seem to let Premiere scream, while I've heard other editor horror stories about everything running, then after an OS update, certain things were not working properly, whether it is a graphics card issue, or Premiere lagging. Also, certain versions of Premiere have listed the 'supported' graphics cards listed on the Adobe website. Certain cards are no longer supported, or on the graphics card lists.

A few years ago, editing in Premiere 7.2.2, with Mac OS 10.7.5, with a Nvidia Quadroo 4000, was a perfect combination, and everything worked in total harmony. Today, it could be an OS issue with the card, or a card and Premiere issue, or a RAM issue, or you don't have the right drivers or driver updates, or you've got media cache that might be slowing the machine down. You can also lower your Preview Settings from 100% to 50%. Most top notch Mac Pros will start to choke after so many effects being placed on a clip, so this is common, but another option is to buy more RAM, like from OWC, and put another 32 GB RAM into your Mac. Also, check inside of Premiere, and ensure your RAM allocation is set so that you have a lot of RAM assigned to run Premiere. On my Mac, I have 64 GB RAM, and I've allocated 50 GB soley to Premiere, so it runs like a Ferrari.

There are a ton of graphics cards on the market that would be better for you, some faster, and some slower, so I'd look at price and benchmark speed tests. Some older cards are actually faster than some of the newer cards you see on the market today. Many of the older GTX - series Nvidia cards, are still faster than some of the AMD cards today. So, you can get a faster card for very little. Adobe has always pushed what cards are supported and what ones are not, so at the end of the day, even though you are editing on the most current version of Premiere, and your mac specs are good, it simply may come down to a compatibility or supportability issue, as older cards are phased out, and newer cards are phased in.

Best of luck on this,


Tom Laughlin
Digital Chop House
Salt Lake City, Utah

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Harry Bromley-Davenport
Re: Graphics card issue
on Aug 26, 2016 at 9:47:48 pm

Dear Tom,

I cannot adequately express how grateful I am to you for your extensive and considered response to my post about the appalling Premiere Pro. I apologize for my tardy response, however, please know that your empathetic reply gave me a great boost.

The Adobe phone help is useless - not because they are all idiots, although some appear to have literally no knowledge of the program- but because, each time I have phoned with pretty much the same question, I get a different tech who gives a totally different solution.

I never would have believed that I would long for the days of simple FCP 7.03 crashes which were pretty much predictable to a seasoned sufferer.

In response to your warm and generous posting on the Cow, I have already executed many of the suggestions you offer (toss out media cache files, toss out previews, toss out media file database, toss out prefs, RAM allocation, Preview settings etc and more)

In desperation, I tottered out and bought a new Nvidia GTX 980 Ti card from MacVidCards who buy them and prep (flash?) them for Mac use. They seem respectable and have been around for about 15 years. I did this because it has 6 GB of vRam. Surely enough? This replaces my Nvidia 980 (2 GB vRam). I have installed their (MacVidCards) Webdriver, but am still a bit hazy as to whether I have it set up ok. Nevertheless, other programs seem to work ok. This upgrade has, so far, had hardly any perceptible positive effect.

I have also just received, from Other World Computing, a further order I made in utter desperation: an OWC Mercury Accelsior PCIe E2 card. I'm actually a little unclear about what the hell it does. But they had snazzy advertising and I thought I would throw a bit more money at my problem and see if it sticks. Am I clarifying the depth of desperation to which I have sunk? However, I am wondering whether to install it right now, while in my current hell, or whether that installation would fan the flames of my problem - or, hopefully, blow up my house and me with it.

Incidentally, Adobe After Effects (also), which ran fine under the Nvidia 680 card is producing bizarre displays. So that's a new bummer.
When I have exhausted your ideas, if I have no success, I will do the following: not necessarily in this order:

1. Roll back to PP version 2014.1 (?) - or perhaps an even older version.

2. Export an XML file of my current project file and try to import it into PP 2014 version (and earlier)

3. (Although I have already done this) I will remove all the plugins from my current project using "remove assets" (or whatever it's called). However, since I don't trust PP in the slightest, I fear that traces of these plugins may be left in situ. So I'm currently attempting to remove the plugins folder and hide it on another drive.

4. I am also wondering if I have one or two older plugins which PP doesn't like to use - or which it can't even bear to share space with on the same computer. So that's worth a weeding job.

5. Despite the fact that I am currently unable to open (or keep running) ANY of my previous project files, which must indicate something. I would then start a fresh test project, perhaps under v 2014.1 which wasn't too atrocious, and build two test projects ... one in 1920x1080 and the other in 3840x2160. And then start adding plugins, trying to export etc. I wonder whether the 3840x2160 thing may be at the root of the problem.

6. I must absolutely keep a written record of what tests I am doing. I get so punchy sometimes that I completely forget where I am as I totter off into antiquity.

7. Other approaches - maybe you have further suggestions ...?

8. Grab hold of a very friendly and helpful chap (a Cow advisor) named David Roth Weiss who has given me first rate advice in the past. I am holding off on that option because I don't want to bug him until I have exhausted all options.

9. Go out and kill a small child.

Again, many thanks both for your Cow response and for getting thus far in reading this email. Really. You gave me a lift, so please do communicate again if you have a moment. I need all the advice and moral support I can muster.

Best wishes,


Harry Bromley-Davenport.

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