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Large Comps = slow renders :( - any advice?

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Tim West
Large Comps = slow renders :( - any advice?
on Apr 20, 2010 at 10:14:21 am

Hi,

I have an After Effects project which is taking a lifetime to render - just wondered what I could do to speed thngs up?

Essentially I have three 2000 x 3000 pixel comps which go into a 1024x576 comp - in here I do moves on these master comps using a 3D camera (for control reasons) - there is very little going on in the master comps - each contains 9-10 photos with a couple of effects on them (drop shadow etc).
There is motion blur applied to the moves.

The overall duration of the project is 3 minutes - I was surprised when the render took over 5 hours!

Can anyone offer any advice on speeding things up?

Thanks! :)

______________________

Mac Dual 2.3 GHz G5
10 GB Ram

After Effects CS3



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Steve Roberts
Re: Large Comps = slow renders :( - any advice?
on Apr 20, 2010 at 12:33:00 pm

Unless your photos are unnecessarily large (i.e. big imported photos scaled down), I'd say you're stuck. That sounds like a big comp, big photos, long running time. I used to do things like that overnight.

Did you enable multiprocessing?



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Roland R. Kahlenberg
Re: Large Comps = slow renders :( - any advice?
on Apr 20, 2010 at 12:34:29 pm

Motion Blur does extend render times. Is there a way you can pre-render the precomps OR Add CC fORCE Motion Blur after the initial render of the master comp?

HTH
RoRK

Sell your AEPs with broadcastGEMs' DVD series of templates. Click here for more


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Dave LaRonde
Re: Large Comps = slow renders :( - any advice?
on Apr 20, 2010 at 1:42:01 pm

[Tim West] "Can anyone offer any advice on speeding things up? "

Yeah -- prerender those big precomps. Watch the final render time drop like a rock.

In Days Of Yore, when 16-bit OS's ruled, when 512 MB was a boatload of RAM and when 256 mHz processors were considered fast, we prerendered ALL THE TIME. We had two choices: prerender or miss deadlines.

And the beauty part is that prerendering still works. Give it a shot.

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


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Tudor "Ted" Jelescu
Re: Large Comps = slow renders :( - any advice?
on Apr 20, 2010 at 2:59:06 pm

I agree with Dave- pre-render is a time saver. It would be nice to be able to have complete control over all the elements at all time, but that will increase render time. Plus I think pre-rendering makes you think more and plan more- kind of like when you only had a roll of film to shoot pictures on an analog photo camera.

Tudor "Ted" Jelescu
Senior VFX Artist
Bucharest, Romania
http://www.ennstudio.ro


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Tim West
Re: Large Comps = slow renders :( - any advice?
on Apr 20, 2010 at 3:02:21 pm

Thanks for the advice - think I'm just going to have to swallow the long render time on this one ....
... not sure pre-rendering a 2000 px x 3000 px comp would helpe me much ... but I could be wrong :)



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Dave LaRonde
Re: Large Comps = slow renders :( - any advice?
on Apr 20, 2010 at 3:07:23 pm

[Tim West] "... but I could be wrong"

COULD?

Tell you what: when the job's in the can, the heat's off and the project is still fresh in your mind, just run yourself a little test. Try those prerenders, then render out your final comp using the same settings, and get out the stopwatch.

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


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Tim West
Re: Large Comps = slow renders :( - any advice?
on Apr 20, 2010 at 3:11:24 pm

Only say could as there really isn't a lot going on in the big comps - no effects - just photos (at 100% of their original size so they shouldn't be slowing it down too much).
Will give it a go later on - thanks for your input.



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Steve Roberts
Re: Large Comps = slow renders :( - any advice?
on Apr 20, 2010 at 3:53:23 pm

So the inside of each sub-comp is a still? No motion in there?

If that were the case, you should pre-render each sub-comp as a still. Why re-render a still effect on every frame?



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Tim West
Re: Large Comps = slow renders :( - any advice?
on Apr 20, 2010 at 4:47:29 pm

There is some animation - just not al ot - some of the photo's scale and change position (the large comps are pages in a comic book style photo story) ... other wise I would just use a still!

Thanks,

T



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cowcowcowcowcow
Erik Lindahl
Re: Large Comps = slow renders :( - any advice?
on Apr 20, 2010 at 6:51:09 pm

A few things you might already be doing:

Prepare you media. Scale it to the maximum needed size, make sure it's RGB PSD files and so forth. Never make them bigger than required. Avoid working with compressed files if you can.

Check that rendering. How is your system being taxed when you render? Fiddle with the multi-core settings. Really really large comps can be faster on fewer cores with more RAM addressed to them.

Work smart with proxies and pre-renders. If you end up with long render times you still have to get the jobb done. 5 hours is a full rez revision per evening if you may, hence during the day you might need to work with proxies and pre-renders.

We did a spot earlier this year that was a comp based on 3K RED material placed in an SD PAL comp (720x576) for the ability to pan, scan, scale, zoom and so forth. Some of the more complex part had 4-5 pre-comps with say 4-5 3K layers in each pre-comp. After a while you're forced to pre-render unless you want to drive your self insane.

At the end of the day, the issue you have is something I think will be far far better on a high-end computer with CS5. It will still be there but less of a "block" in the road.

------------------------
Erik Lindahl
Freecloud Post Production Services
http://www.freecloud.se


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Walter Soyka
Re: Large Comps = slow renders :( - any advice?
on Apr 20, 2010 at 8:56:37 pm

Erik, this is a great concise post on how to maximize AE performance by adjusting your workflow.

The only two things I'd have to add for the original poster are tips for working, not rendering. Check out Region of Interest rendering, and set up Shift-RAM preview to run at a low resolution and skip frames. I leave RAM preview at high quality settings for fine detail work, and then use Shift-RAM preview for fast and coarse evaluations.

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
Creative Cow Forum Host: Live & Stage Events


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Erik Lindahl
Re: Large Comps = slow renders :( - any advice?
on Apr 21, 2010 at 8:20:25 am

Ah, ofcourse! When working with preiviews go to regins of interest, work with half or quarter rez as well as every other frame. Turn off things like motion blur and frameblending and make sure you work in an 8-bit comp. You can often plan comps well also when pre-comping. Put effects on the 1024x576 pixel pre-comp rather than each 3K layer in the comp (if possible obviously).

------------------------
Erik Lindahl
Freecloud Post Production Services
http://www.freecloud.se


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Tim West
Re: Large Comps = slow renders :( - any advice?
on Apr 21, 2010 at 9:45:13 am

Thanks everyone for the replies!

Unfortunately there's no way round my long render :( - but even as a pretty experienced After Effects user there were some tips in here that will help me in the future (especially shift + ram previews).

Thanks again,

T



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Steve Roberts
Re: Large Comps = slow renders :( - any advice?
on Apr 21, 2010 at 1:00:33 pm

.. and unless they've changed something, AE prefers it when res matches magnification when RAM previewing.

(i.e. preview at 1/4 res and 25% mag, or 1/2 res and 50% mag.)



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Todd Kopriva
Re: Large Comps = slow renders :( - any advice?
on Apr 24, 2010 at 9:27:28 pm

There are a bunch of tips for improving performance (including workflow efficiency) on this page: "Improve performance".

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Todd Kopriva, Adobe Systems Incorporated
putting the 'T' back in 'RTFM' : After Effects Help on the Web
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If a page of After Effects Help answers your question, please consider rating it. If you have a tip, technique, or link to share---or if there is something that you'd like to see added or improved---please leave a comment.


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