Just wondering if anyone knows if my now old Mac 2 x 2.26ghz Quad core Intel xeon with 32gig of Ram will be able to play back After Effects CS6 in real time? I've seen numerous tuts about setting up real time playback and implemented them but it is still agonisingly slow. I'm about to go out and an SSD drive but thought I would throw the question out there first. Processor speed is 1066. Using OS X 10.9.2
What do you mean "playback" in real time. After effects will do a RAM preview, where it temporarily renders a number of frames to RAM(total depends on amount of RAM on your computer). But that's the only real-time playback and you still need to wait for each frame to render and that depends on your CPU.
If you just mean hitting the play button(spacebar) and playing...AE has NEVER done that it RT.
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Thanks for your input. Any thoughts on whether my 2009 Mac Pro 4, 1 Quad core Intel xeon 2 x 2.26ghz zwith 32gig of Ram can get up to speed render time is far to slow at the moment. Will an SSD drive make much difference?
A bottleneck of your system is likely your processors. A lot of things in AE are still single-threaded. That means that you are limited by the clock speed of a single core in your processor and your clock speed...isn't super.
Now, AE's structure is starting to change - the majority of the AE team has been working on rewriting AE's core code to make it properly multithreaded. We can see the first fruits of that in CC 2015 with the user interface being separate from the renderer. But it's kind of a step back in some ways because the old multiprocessing isn't compatible with the new architecture. Often CC 2014 will render things faster than CC 2015 (as mentioned here [link]).
So, if you're using CC 2015 (AE version 13.5), I'd recommend trying CC 2014 (AE version 13.2) - which is included with your Creative Cloud subscription. (AE versions 11 and 12 are included with CC as well, by the way.) See if the multiprocessing helps.
Although, multiprocessing was easily disabled by some expressions and effects...it was a pretty bad kludge, so it still might not help.
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