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Upgraded to Samsung T1 for media drive, still choppy playback, dropping frames, not sure what to do

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Jimmy JensenUpgraded to Samsung T1 for media drive, still choppy playback, dropping frames, not sure what to do
by on Apr 15, 2016 at 10:09:36 pm

I recently upgraded to the Sony A7sii and I'm still trying to dial in my workflow but having major issues. I'm shooting XAVC-S 100mb/s files in 4K 23.976 fps. I'm trying to edit in Premiere Pro and I can't get smooth playback in my timeline. Right now I'm only trying to edit with 1 stream of video but I'd like to be able to use up to 5 streams or so. I have playback resolution set to 1/4 quality too.

This is my setup
2013 27-inch iMac
3.5 GHz Intel Core i7
32gb RAM
GeForce GTX 780M
OSX 10.11 El Capitan
Latest Version of Premiere Pro CC 2015
I have CUDA turned on and my CUDA driver is the latest version

I recently decided that my 3TB Fusion Drive in my iMac must be my bottleneck since I was using that to store everything. So I purchased a couple external drives and now this is my setup
3TB Fusion - Boot drive for OS ,Apps, and Cache
500 GB Samsung T1 External SSD USB 3.0 - Project, Media, and Previews (BM Disk Speed Test Results were 367MB/s write speed and 421MB/s read speed)
6TB WD My Book External - Exports

Unfortunately this new setup changed nothing. I'm still dropping frames it's very frustrating. Everything I have read tells me that my computer's specs should be powerful enough to edit and playback this footage smoothly. Does anyone have any clue why I can't do so?


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Chris WrightRe: Upgraded to Samsung T1 for media drive, still choppy playback, dropping frames, not sure what to do
by on Apr 15, 2016 at 10:54:40 pm

make sure it can turbo up to 3.9 ghz because lumetri is 90% cpu based. does it lag with lumetri off?


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Jimmy JensenRe: Upgraded to Samsung T1 for media drive, still choppy playback, dropping frames, not sure what to do
by on Apr 15, 2016 at 11:20:52 pm

I turned Lumetri off and it helped but only very slightly. Am I safely able to turbo up to 3.9? I'm unfamiliar with the process how do I do that?


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Chris WrightRe: Upgraded to Samsung T1 for media drive, still choppy playback, dropping frames, not sure what to do
by on Apr 15, 2016 at 11:24:39 pm
Last Edited By Chris Wright on Apr 15, 2016 at 11:29:14 pm

watch activity monitor and see if CPU spikes 90% or higher with zero effects as turbo should be automatic


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Jimmy JensenRe: Upgraded to Samsung T1 for media drive, still choppy playback, dropping frames, not sure what to do
by on Apr 16, 2016 at 4:50:54 pm

So the column next to Premiere Pro in the activity monitor peaked at 710% and the three numbers down below were:
System: 10%
User: 85%
Idle: 5%

Are these normal numbers? Someone else mentioned that they think storing my OS and Apps on my fusion drive could be the issue since it's part SSD and part 5400rpm HDD. Any thoughts on that?


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David Roth WeissRe: Upgraded to Samsung T1 for media drive, still choppy playback, dropping frames, not sure what to do
by on Apr 16, 2016 at 12:26:33 am

Your problem is NOT hardware related, it's an ongoing issue with the optimization, or lack there of, of the XAVCi codec in Premiere. That issue has been a known issue for a long time - I personally discussed it with Al Moody of the Adobe development team many months ago, because I tested the codec thoroughly and found that only one stream icould be played back without dropping frames, even on an 8-drive RAID generating 1100MB/sec.

The codec was supposed to have been better optimized in the latest versions of CC, but from what my clients tell me that just ain't so.

So, don't spend a lot of time fussing with your hardware, cuz if it can't run on a big beefy RAID with good hardware, you'll never get five streams to playback on a single SSD drive.

You'll need to transcode to a hi-performance codec such as ProRes HQ until Adobe fixes their handling of the codec... That's your only solution at this time.

David Roth Weiss
Director/Editor/Colorist & Workflow Consultant
David Weiss Productions
Los Angeles


David is a Creative COW contributing editor and a forum host of the Apple Final Cut Pro forum.


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Chris WrightRe: Upgraded to Samsung T1 for media drive, still choppy playback, dropping frames, not sure what to do
by on Apr 16, 2016 at 1:04:23 am

I really wish the problem was nailed down. Transcoding does help editing but some people do run XAVCi codec just fine which means further debugging is necessary to find the native import solution. You can also try prelude to convert to cineform or DnxHD files. I was hesitant to suggest transcoding because that will pretty much negate 500gb SSD's as these files are much much larger.


""Well, Adobe released the latest versions of CC 2015 today, and I'm pleased to say that Premiere on El Capitan is now is as fast as FCP-X - lightening fast with 4K and native Sony XAVCI/MXF media.""

https://forums.creativecow.net/thread/3/969947


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Chris WrightRe: Upgraded to Samsung T1 for media drive, still choppy playback, dropping frames, not sure what to do
by on Apr 16, 2016 at 3:13:58 am

ok, i just tried some xavc-s stuff.

some beta testing:

these improved my playback framerate by 30%:

26. set audio to 44.1 in hardware and premiere
audio pref - disable play audio while scrubbing
disable maintain pitch
audio hardware latency 200ms

disable sequence composite linear color
sequence audio settings 32000hz
sequence settings preview file 1920x1080 1/2 size video frame size 3840x2160 then 1/2 size playback

27. in monitor, pull markers together so there's less tick marks per inch, the playback marker will go
offscreen while playing back.


it seems to me that there's many many problems with premiere.


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Jimmy JensenRe: Upgraded to Samsung T1 for media drive, still choppy playback, dropping frames, not sure what to do
by on Apr 17, 2016 at 8:50:39 am

Thanks Chris I'll give that stuff a try!

Here's a little update. I used Media Encoder to transcode the files to ProRes 422HQ and everything is extremely snappy now with no dropped frames. I suppose I'll have to keep doing this until Premiere decides to do something about this issue. Pretty ironic that Premiere can handle files that are almost 9 times the size more efficiently than the smaller files (XAVC S)


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Jimmy JensenRe: Upgraded to Samsung T1 for media drive, still choppy playback, dropping frames, not sure what to do
by on Apr 16, 2016 at 4:56:23 pm

Thank you for your insight David. MPEG Streamclip doesn't support XAVC it appears. What do you recommend? EditReady?

Also, I thought this might be worth mentioning to you just in case you hadn't considered it. Someone else said they think storing my OS and Apps on my fusion drive could be the issue since it's part SSD and part 5400rpm HDD and supposedly only an 80MB/s transfer rate. Any thoughts on that?


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