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What's the slowest point in my computer?

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Dave Po
What's the slowest point in my computer?
on Nov 11, 2010 at 10:21:00 pm

I have an i7 2.8ghz Intel quadcore with 8GB of Ram. While exporting I've been watching my Activity Monitor and neither the CPU nor Memory is running at full capacity, possibly not even half capacity. Is my hard drive the slow point in this situation? I do suppose writing to a different hard drive would help, eh? How much? And how much benefit do you get from a solid state?


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Rafael Amador
Re: What's the slowest point in my computer?
on Nov 11, 2010 at 10:51:38 pm

[Dave Po] " While exporting I've been watching my Activity Monitor and neither the CPU nor Memory is running at full capacity, possibly not even half capacity."
This doesn't necessarily means that your HDs are slow. The CPU or memory running, will depend very much of the task you are doing. There are many processes that take place on the GPU.
But whatever the footage you edit and the workflow, having the media in an external HD is a rule of thumb.
rafael

http://www.nagavideo.com


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Colin McQuillan
Re: What's the slowest point in my computer?
on Nov 11, 2010 at 11:06:25 pm

[Dave Po] "I do suppose writing to a different hard drive would help, eh?"

It definitely does. When doing batch conversion and such I typically point my destination to a different drive than where my source is located. Let one drive read, while the other writes rather than only one drive doing both! The cost though can be the fragmenting of your project so it is good to have a workflow set out for this. Personally I keep all my source project material on my primary RAID and have an 'Exports/Conversions" folder on another media drive.

Another consideration is the codec you are using, and how/why you are exporting. Prores can address more cores when rendering than some of the other codecs. Also, if converting to various formats other than the editing codec I find it best/fastest to first export a self-contained QT file from FCP and use virtual clusters in Compressor to do the encoding (setting the destination to a drive other than the one where the source QT file is located.)

Colin McQuillan
Vancouver, B.C.


"Live, love, laugh and be happy."


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Michael Gissing
Re: What's the slowest point in my computer?
on Nov 12, 2010 at 12:04:11 am

Don't forget FCP is not utlising all available cores and RAM. Depending on what you are doing, the software may be the slowest factor.


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Thomas Morter-Laing
Re: What's the slowest point in my computer?
on Nov 12, 2010 at 12:44:48 am

I didn't know prores could utilise more cores during the render as well as everything else?! That's cool, 2 questions though, how does the render codec do that when the application (FCP) is only 32bit? Also, is there any comparison to other codecs? I know there are debates and very very complex descriptions, just wondering if there are benchmarks or anything useable in say, a debate...

:D
Tom Morter-Laing
Certified Apple Product Proffessional, 2010
Degree; TV Production

iMac 27" intel i7 2.93GHz, 12GB RAM, ATI HD5750 [1GB GDDR5], 2TB Int. SATA with 2TB External HDD; (FW800).



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Rafael Amador
Re: What's the slowest point in my computer?
on Nov 12, 2010 at 1:03:36 pm

[Thomas Morter-Laing] "I didn't know prores could utilise more cores during the render as well as everything else?! That's cool, 2 questions though, how does the render codec do that when the application (FCP) is only 32bit?"
Prores is designed for very fast processing, but in FC, this is a more theoretical than practical advantage (at the moment) due to the so well know FC shortcomings (If you want to read about: http://www.philiphodgetts.com/2010/09/what-should-apple-do-with-final-cut-p... ).
rafael

http://www.nagavideo.com


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Dave LaRonde
Re: What's the slowest point in my computer?
on Nov 12, 2010 at 3:27:35 am

I presume that your computer has a 64-bit operating system. You should know that FCP is a 32-bit application. Thus, it is limited to seeing only 4 GB of memory. although other 64-bit applications can see all of it.

If you want to know about a choke point for throughput, I submit that it is FCP itself.

Dave LaRonde
Sr. Promotion Producer
KCRG-TV (ABC) Cedar Rapids, IA


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Rafael Amador
OT: How to boot in 64 bits.
on Nov 12, 2010 at 1:10:41 pm

[Dave LaRonde] "I presume that your computer has a 64-bit operating system. You should know that FCP is a 32-bit application. Thus, it is limited to seeing only 4 GB of memory. although other 64-bit applications can see all of it."
Dear friends,
i know this has been explained here many times, but I can't find with the SEARCH.
How do I boot my Intel Mac in 64 or in 32b?
rafael

http://www.nagavideo.com


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Andy Mees
Re: OT: How to boot in 64 bits.
on Nov 12, 2010 at 1:57:17 pm

Hey Rafa

You press and hold down the 6 and 4 keys immediately after the boot chime.

Cheers
Andy


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Rafael Amador
Re: OT: How to boot in 64 bits.
on Nov 12, 2010 at 4:12:54 pm

[Andy Mees] "You press and hold down the 6 and 4 keys immediately after the boot chime.
"

OK, so without holding those keys is always 32b, isn't it?
I just bough a new MBP and I can see some 64b processes on the Activity Monitor.
rafael

http://www.nagavideo.com


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Al Davis
Re: OT: How to boot in 64 bits.
on Nov 12, 2010 at 10:15:00 pm

Rafael - there is a really nice app (free/donate) called "32- or 64-bit Kernel Startup Mode Selector"

http://www.ahatfullofsky.comuv.com

Once installed and set; it will boot you up automatically in the 64 bit mode. And yes I JUST figured this out after a year. And YES - I find it makes a HUGE difference - particularly with application launches etc.

-Al

Al Davis
Visual Velocity
Brookline, MA


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Thomas Morter-Laing
Re: OT: How to boot in 64 bits.
on Nov 12, 2010 at 10:29:41 pm

Edit the file:

/Library/Preferences/SystemConfiguration/com.apple.Boot.plist

Insert arch=x86_64 into the Kernel Flags field.

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<!DOCTYPE plist PUBLIC "-//Apple Computer//DTD PLIST 1.0//EN" "http://www.apple.com/DTDs/PropertyList-1.0.dtd">


Kernel
mach_kernel
Kernel Flags
arch=x86_64



This will make it permanently 64 bit, no strings (geeky pun there) attached. BTW, if you mess that up, your computer wont start, and the only way to sort it is to open it in target mode using another computer, and change the file back to how it was originally. Dont let that put you off though, you wont lose any data, and its very simple to do.

:D
Tom Morter-Laing
Certified Apple Product Proffessional, 2010
Degree; TV Production

iMac 27" intel i7 2.93GHz, 12GB RAM, ATI HD5750 [1GB GDDR5], 2TB Int. SATA with 2TB External HDD; (FW800).



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Al Davis
Re: OT: How to boot in 64 bits.
on Nov 12, 2010 at 10:34:23 pm

Yeesh - I wouldn't touch that!!! I need to earn a living; not engage in science projects. Use the free app. Nice little gentle toy, that works; and can toggle back and forth.

All the best,
-Al

Al Davis
Visual Velocity
Brookline, MA


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