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AE CS3: RAM optimization

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Brian DeViteriAE CS3: RAM optimization
by on Sep 8, 2009 at 4:56:01 pm

Just installed a 32GB RAM upgrade on a MacPro 10.5.5 with 2x3GHz Dual-Core Intel Xeon (4 cores total) and ATI Radeon X1900 graphics card. Running After Effects CS3, FCP Studio 2, and have a CalDigit HDPro storage system (Raid-5).

(Will probably not be upgrading to 10.6.x until next year, and at that time will probably upgrade to CS4 or CS5 and FCP 3.)

Any suggestions as to what tweaks can I make to the configurations to optimize the amount of RAM that AE is using?

Memory & Cache
maximum memory usage 150% = 3.0gb
image cache is 50% = 1.5gb
disk cache is enabled @ 40000mb

Multiprocessing is currently enabled, but may have to disable during "final" renders if the DVCPRO blinking gamma render issue arises again on some clips, as it has done in the past.

Any suggestions would be GREATLY appreciated.

Yes, I know about the limitations of 3gb per core for AE CS3 use, but when running FCP and AE side-by-side (while working, not rendering) this RAM upgrade seems to have made a world of difference.

As a side note, bought the RAM upgrade from OWC and so far so good...

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Jon GeddesRe: AE CS3: RAM optimization
by on Sep 9, 2009 at 3:29:25 am

I've actually had better results when I disable the disk cache. Try it out and see how it effects your renders. I even use an SSD (Intel SLC) as the cache drive and it still slows it down a little.

Jon Geddes

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Brian DeViteriRe: AE CS3: RAM optimization
by on Sep 10, 2009 at 5:39:38 pm

Jon - Thanks for your feedback. So far, I've been finding that when working and doing preview renders, I'm having luck with the disk cache enabled. Saves me some time when previewing long segments and making slight keyframe adjustments. I'm not really noticing a speed difference either way.

When rendering, I've been turning the disk cache off. I've had luck with this until last night when I got the dreaded "could not create image buffer" error. I believe this was due to the fact that it was one of the last renders of larger batch that I setup, and all of the caches were not purged prior to starting that render.

In the past I've had luck avoiding this issue on a batch render by setting everything up, saving the AE project, purging all the caches, quitting AE, restarting AE, opening the saved project, then starting the renders. For whatever reason, on a large batch render, this has been MUCH more successful than purging the caches alone. (This was not done prior to the image buffer error last night... go figure.)

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