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New HP workstation speed issues

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Aaron KentNew HP workstation speed issues
by on Jan 12, 2015 at 8:56:42 pm
Last Edited By Aaron Kent on Jan 12, 2015 at 8:57:04 pm

Just got upgraded to a new HP z820 at work. 24 cores. Adobe After Effects CC 2014. Just starting to set things up and I'm experiencing very slow ram preview and rendering from a machine of this spec. Anyone experiencing anything like this with the newest Adobe CC software?

Cheers

AK


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Walter SoykaRe: New HP workstation speed issues
by on Jan 12, 2015 at 9:58:36 pm

What are the rest of your system specs (specifically memory and hard drive configuration)? What are your Ae disk cache and memory and multiprocessing settings?

Can you describe the comps you're rendering and seeing the slowness with?

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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Aaron KentRe: New HP workstation speed issues
by on Jan 12, 2015 at 10:13:15 pm
Last Edited By Aaron Kent on Jan 12, 2015 at 10:14:26 pm

Memory is the only thing lacking. Currently 64 gig spread across 24 cores, I do not know whether that is something the system should be able to delegate given the amount of available ram.

Disk cache is pointed to an internal raid 5 array (5 terabytes)

project files are accessed over fiber.

k6000 card although I am not dealing with 3D in AE

also not bothering with multi-processing. So far that hangs AE if I try to engage it (even turning down ram per core to 1 GIG)

very simple broadcast (HD 1920 1080) multilayer comps. I've been on a 2010 mac pro for 3 years and this stuff is low to no processor intensive RAM and rendering. You hit the zero key and the comp caches and plays quick. On the new HP machine I'd say it's half to 3/4 slower than the older computer caching the comp.

I've tried collecting a couple projects locally and seeing if times improve but they're still sluggish.

At this point my guesses are it's a CC 2014 issue or a bus issue. Little things I notice that are different between windows 7 and mac are the screen redraw rates. For instance, when my RAM completes in OSX, i can track the playhead smoothly travelling down the timeline. However, in Windows when the RAM completes and begins to play the playhead isn't smooth, although the info window tells me that it is correctly playing back the frame rate.

I'm going to see if they're is a way to down grade the after effects through CC and see if an older version works better.

cheers

AK


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Walter SoykaRe: New HP workstation speed issues
by on Jan 12, 2015 at 10:24:37 pm

[Aaron Kent] "also not bothering with multi-processing. So far that hangs AE if I try to engage it (even turning down ram per core to 1 GIG)"

Multiprocessing is pretty much necessary for really exploiting your system resources.

Sometimes the settings can be a bit counter-intuitive. In an effort to try to make the system run faster with as many render processes as possible, you may be inclined to reserve too little RAM for other apps, too few CPUs for other apps, and too low a RAM allocation per background CPU.

I'd suggest you start off leaving 16 of your 64GB of RAM for other applications, at least 12 of your 24 CPUs for other applications and maybe more, and setting your RAM allocation per background CPU high -- maybe 4 GB.

I have a couple Z800 workstations with 96 GB of RAM and, depending on the kind of work I'm doing, and the degree to which I've tweaked my memory and multiprocessing settings, I can usually push CPU utilization between 75-100% and get much speedier renders than I can on smaller systems.

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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Aaron KentRe: New HP workstation speed issues
by on Jan 12, 2015 at 10:46:38 pm

Thanks Walter.

Playing around with the amount of ram left for other applications helps it out a little bit (i think)

Multiprocessing seems like a no go. No matter what configuration I set up it just seems to hang as it starts initializing background processes. Maybe in the next point revision....

Cheers

AK


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Walter SoykaRe: New HP workstation speed issues
by on Jan 12, 2015 at 10:57:53 pm

[Aaron Kent] "Multiprocessing seems like a no go. No matter what configuration I set up it just seems to hang as it starts initializing background processes. Maybe in the next point revision...."

Initializing background processes can take a while -- especially when you are launching a lot of them. A system SSD can help quite a lot here.

If you temporarily reduce the number of background processes Ae starts (such as by increasing the number of CPUs available to other applications to, say, 22 so that Ae only starts two render processes), does that seem to work without hanging?

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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Aaron KentRe: New HP workstation speed issues
by on Jan 12, 2015 at 11:04:10 pm

Yeah, if I get extreme it will fire up a multiprocessor preview, but it's slow relatively speaking versus a plain old RAM preview on these simple comps. I can dial the number of cores that I give away down to about 16 before it hangs on the background process hang. Either way, it still works very slowly for a comp of the simplicity that I am caching.

AK


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Walter SoykaRe: New HP workstation speed issues
by on Jan 12, 2015 at 11:16:12 pm

There's a lot of overhead for initializing multiprocessing, but on longer renders, it's paid for with the improved render speed.

I do usually leave it off for RAM previews because that initial wait can be long, but on for renders.

I also recommend using the "Cache work area in background" feature as you work if you have a fast cache disk to reduce the wait on future RAM previews.

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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Richard GarabedainRe: New HP workstation speed issues
by on Jan 12, 2015 at 10:06:23 pm

From what ive heard, After effects does not use the full potential of multiple cores like it should.


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