Latest post Mon, Apr 4 2011 10:43 AM by relaht. 28 replies.
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  • Sat, Feb 26 2011 11:16 AM

    • relaht
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    Disappointed with performance on MacPro 12 Core

    I'm coming from MC 3.1 on a G5 2x2.7 GHz and just upgraded to MC 5.0.3 on a brand new MacPro 12 Core.

    I was hoping that I can spare a lot of render time on the new system.

    But the first tests are very disappointing vor me. When I render effects, just 1 of 12 cores is working (sometimes 2)

    In fact the processor load is just about 5% and I don't experience a significant speed boost (compare to the G5)

    Is there anything I can do, or have I wait for a new Avid release, that supports multi core processors better than the current one.

    AMC 5.5.2, Aja IO Express, Mac OSX 10.6.6, MacPro 12 core, 8 GB [view my complete system specs]
  • Sat, Feb 26 2011 11:43 AM In reply to

    • mark.burton
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    Re: Disappointed with performance on MacPro 12 Core

    Thats pretty disapointing. We're about to start a project with 12 core macs and I had hoped it would make a real differnce to how fast we could render, export and mixdown etc.

    Is this a "wait for the 64bit version" situation or more to do with Avid not having implemented multithreading as best they could / at all?

  • Sat, Feb 26 2011 3:11 PM In reply to

    • mark.burton
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    Re: Disappointed with performance on MacPro 12 Core

    Interestingly my Core i7 MacBookPro uses all 4 cores when rendering in Avid. I think that might be an CPU arcitecture difffernce though, perhaps to do with Core i7 having 'TurboBoost'. I guess the Westmere Xeon processors in the MacPro can not do the same thing?

  • Sat, Feb 26 2011 4:49 PM In reply to

    • mark.burton
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    Re: Disappointed with performance on MacPro 12 Core

    relaht, could you try something - open the Console inside Media Composer and type 'MultithreadFX'.
    What is the response? Does it say:

    "Multithreaded rendering of FX is disabled for this and all following sessions."

    ... or does it say:

    "Multithreaded rendering of FX is enabled for this and all following sessions."

    I'm trying to figure out if Multithreaded rendering of FX is enabled by default on your machine. Type it again until it says enabled, then try your render test again - any difference in core usage?

    This is a total longshot, but worth a try.

  • Sun, Feb 27 2011 12:02 AM In reply to

    • relaht
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    Re: Disappointed with performance on MacPro 12 Core

    Multithreaded rendering was enabled by default.

    I made the following test.

    One minute footage of 1:2 PAL material with a time warp effect.

     

    Multithreading ON:

    Render time: 4:28

     

    Multithreading OFF

    Render time 4:30

     

    So on both tests multiple cores are involved. (Don't no why only one at my very first test...)

    But still, the average processor power on both tests was around 7% to 8%.

    Changing Multithreading mode didn't make any difference.

    This is not good enough for me. Or do I want too much?

    AMC 5.5.2, Aja IO Express, Mac OSX 10.6.6, MacPro 12 core, 8 GB [view my complete system specs]
  • Sun, Feb 27 2011 12:22 AM In reply to

    • mark.burton
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    Re: Disappointed with performance on MacPro 12 Core

    No I would agree, its not good enough. To have all those cores available and yet for such a small percentage of their capability to be utilized, is very disapointing.

    With regard to the Multithreading console setting, I see the same thing on my MBP. Off or On, the differnce is only 1 or 2 seconds ove the course of a render. However I do see a much higher usage of the cores I have; around 67% average accross the 4 cores. So the Core i7 processor is doing something the Westmere isn't.

  • Sun, Feb 27 2011 12:31 AM In reply to

    • relaht
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    Re: Disappointed with performance on MacPro 12 Core

    What application do you use to measure the core speed? (I use MenuMeters)

    AMC 5.5.2, Aja IO Express, Mac OSX 10.6.6, MacPro 12 core, 8 GB [view my complete system specs]
  • Sun, Feb 27 2011 2:39 AM In reply to

    • mark.burton
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    Re: Disappointed with performance on MacPro 12 Core

    I was doing the video mixdown test using Activity Monitor to check on CPU usage, but I've now installed MenuMeters too. Here's what I found with various effects. The percetage figures below are their average usage across the 4 cores when performing a render:

    3D Warp - 90% (most options on, see below)
    SpectraMatte - 70%
    Timewarp (Both Fields) - 60%
    Resize - 58%
    Timecode Burnin - 49%
    Timewarp (Fluidmotion) - 40%
    3D PIP - 40%
    Film Grain - 34%

    Unsurprisingly each effect has different levels of multithreaded optimisation, even within their individual settings. For example, 3D Warp with almost all options on will use 90% of CPU's, but turn on the options for 'Shape' or 'Highlight' or 'Erode' and that CPU usage drops to around 28%.

    As a sort of comparison of how cores can work, doing a Compressor H.264 encode uses 100% of the CPU's available processing power. Its no doubt a very complex change to optomise all aspects of a peice of software as deep as Media Composer ( I don't envy the engineers having to figue this out), but with ever more cores appearing in computers, this is surely the way forward.

  • Sun, Feb 27 2011 11:20 AM In reply to

    • relaht
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    Re: Disappointed with performance on MacPro 12 Core

    Here are my results for the MacPro 12 Core (Westmere) 

    --------------------

    3D Warp (simple) - 7% 
    3D Warp (incl.'Shape','Highlight', 'Erode') - 4%
    SpectraMatte - 7%
    Timewarp (Both Fields) - 4%
    Resize - 7%
    Timecode Burning - 5%
    Timewarp (Fluidmotion) - 9%
    3D PIP - 8%
    Film Grain - 5%

    --------------------

     

    As you can see, there is a lot to improve.

    Is Avid aware of this issue?

    AMC 5.5.2, Aja IO Express, Mac OSX 10.6.6, MacPro 12 core, 8 GB [view my complete system specs]
  • Sun, Feb 27 2011 12:06 PM In reply to

    • mark.burton
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    Re: Disappointed with performance on MacPro 12 Core

    Thats insane, that just seems terrible. Hopefully one of the moderators can chime into this post and help explain why this could be the case, surely Avid can't be satisfied with this. You have just bought a top of the line desktop powerhouse, and you're getting on average 7% value out of its capabilites.

    One last test so we can compare the mobile Core i7 and desktop Westmere head to head on Media Composer. I expect you'll still be faster even with the lower overall CPU perectage usage, as you still have 3 times the number of cores, but be interesting to see how far apart they are.

    - Create a 1080p24 project.
    - Create a 1 minute piece of DNx175 media (via mixdown, so the source file is exactly 1 minute).
    - Cut it into a new sequence and apply a Resize of 120%.
    - Render.

    How long does that take on your system? The MacBooPro took 71 seconds.

  • Sun, Feb 27 2011 2:01 PM In reply to

    • relaht
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    Re: Disappointed with performance on MacPro 12 Core

    Here are some good news.

    Rendering the effect you described took only 28 seconds. The processor load was around 17%

     

    Imagine the render time if the processor load can be increased...

    AMC 5.5.2, Aja IO Express, Mac OSX 10.6.6, MacPro 12 core, 8 GB [view my complete system specs]
  • Sun, Feb 27 2011 3:45 PM In reply to

    • mjolnarn
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    Re: Disappointed with performance on MacPro 12 Core

    relaht:

    Imagine the render time if the processor load can be increased...

    With that type of math, the render time for a one minute clip would be about 3 seconds at 100 percent cpu usage and that is, of course, not possible.

    What you are seeing is that Avid is splitting the render process to be as kind against your system as possible and at the same time render as fast as possible.

    But I can agree with you that 3 - 5 secs to render a 1 minute clip would be nice Smile

    Seems like your sys is running about 3 times faster than an MBP however

     

    Mac: 17" Macbook Pro i7 2,66 ghz with 8Gb Ram, 500gb 7200rpm drive___ PC_NEW Win10 Pro Mbo Asus Rampage IV Black CPU Ivy Bridge-E 4960X ( = 12 x 4... [view my complete system specs]

    Tomas 

     

  • Sun, Feb 27 2011 5:09 PM In reply to

    • mark.burton
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    Re: Disappointed with performance on MacPro 12 Core

    Thanks relaht. Good to know you're way out in front with that machine!

  • Mon, Feb 28 2011 4:47 PM In reply to

    • Ikom inc.
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    Re: Disappointed with performance on MacPro 12 Core

    Curious.  We run MC5 on a i5 Macbook Pro and, yes, it uses all four cores...  On the Westmere Macpro 6-core (3.33 GHz) since last summer, it rocks!  With the 12 "virtual" cores running, HD rendering of BCC effects always uses at least 50% of proc. power, which is pretty fast.  My Activity Monitor shows between 600% and 725% of a single processor activity.  Sadly, Fluidmotion effects doesn't use as much, but with both SD and HD projects, we easily overclock the previous G5 Quad running MC 3.1.3...  AMA is also using significant processing power.  Would the Westmere 12-core behave differently from the 6-core?

    Macpro "Westmere" 6 cores 3.33 GHz, OSX 10.6.4, 8 GB RAM, 6TB internal SATA, 6TB G-Raid external backups, Media Composer 5.0.3.9, Matrox TripleHead... [view my complete system specs]
  • Mon, Feb 28 2011 6:17 PM In reply to

    Re: Disappointed with performance on MacPro 12 Core

    I'd guess there's a difference in how the cores are being used.

    There are various stages to using multiple processors and cores.

    First the App can be written to split it's tasks across processors (or cores)

    Then the OS can split task (sent from the app as a single process) across the processors and cores

    And finally in hardware the OS tasks can be split across the processors/cores.

    Incompatibility between these elements can have a detrimental impact on performance.

    A good example is using compressor and clusters. Compressor is frequently much slower with some file processing if you ask it to use a cluster of processors. It spends so long splitting the file up and distributing the tasks and then collecting the results and joining them together that you can encode quicker with a single processor.

    ACI Moderator. I'm not employed by Avid or work for them. I just do this in my spare time. Normally using the current Media Composer version on My... [view my complete system specs]

     

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