I recently took the step of updating my video card to something better, as mentioned in a previous post. Now the time is ripe for me updating the rest of the computer. The old Intel Xeon CPU from the Haswell generation has done a heroic amount of editing work through the years, but it is starting to show some clear signs of ageing. After all, five years is a long time in this line of work.
So... What I'm looking at now is the latest AMD Ryzen 3000 platform and more specifically the Ryzen 9 3900X. This processor has no less than 12 cores and twice as many threads, all while costing a lot less than what you have to pony up for an Intel that even comes close to this performance and specs.
You're actually getting way more performance for less than half of what Intel is charging. So there's really no question as to what you should be using when building a new high end PC in the year 2019.
Buying the processor is sadly just part of the story. I'm now going to have to get new DDR4 RAM and preferably some fast RAM in 32gb modules which is really, and I mean really expensive. Second I'll need to fit on a suitable motherboard. My top choice would be this one, but it will set me back as much as the CPU, so I haven't decided yet. The X570 motherboards for Ryzen 3000 all cost an arm and half a leg, but also have the fast new PCI-E 4 interface which might come in handy down the line.
Just for the heck of it, I'm also going to put all of my shiny new workstation gear in a case that's just as shiny and new.
I don't want an RGB freakshow, but I sure wouldn't mind an open design with lots of fans for good cooling. It's going to make a bit of noise, but the difference is not as much as you think in my experience. Adding more fans to your workstation build might actually keep the noise level down, because they don't have to work as hard. At least that's how the theory goes..
Right now I am looking at the Thermaltake Level 20 XT. This is a real monster with plenty of space for my RAID 10 backup arrangement.
I'll get back to this later when the new gadgets have arrived and do a walkthrough of how to put it all together. I know at least one reader who's interested in this and that's more than enough for me...
There's certainly been a lot of talk about how faster graphics cards, GPUs, can work magic for video (and photo) editing. All of the Adobe apps, as well as nearly all other big names in editing, come with GPU acceleration. What's accelerated, as far as video is concerned, is of course mainly the rendering part. Other things are accelerated too, even playback, but nothing will save you as much time as efficient rendering.
Now that I'm in the process of upgrading my PC, this has raised some questions.
How much do I gain and what video card should I choose? Do I need a certified "pro" GPU like the Quadro series, or will any cheap video gaming card like Geforce or Radeon work just as well? I've tried to work this out, and these are my findings. Please let me know in the comments section if I'm missing something.
The short version is that I do not intend to pay for a Quadro card ever again.
One of the more interesting posts I ran into was this. The GPU benchmark comparisons here have been created with OctaneBench, which is made by OctaneRender. However the results should be at least indicative of what rendering performance to expect in other circumstances as well. More importantly, CGDirector has also compared the price VS performance ration and produced some stunning results:
Now the Quadro cards are obviously good, but when the price-to-performance calculation is also considered it's obvious that you can get even better performance for much less.
The incredibly expensive Nvidia Quadro GP100 is, as I understand it, has some huge advantages for certain applications. But this doesn't really apply for rendering video. Also see this article detailing that the much cheaper Titan XP (and most likely even cheaper cards) is only slightly behind.
I also found a Youtube video with some rendering examples using Premiere 2015.4. It's in Spanish, but I scrubbed to the most interesting part.
In this comparison of only GeForce GPUs, the difference between them is surprisingly small. I'll rely more on the Premiere Pro CC and OctaneBench results in any event, but it's obvious that I'd rather invest in a "gaming" CPU for my purposes.
Compared to when we started out, there are several video editing apps available for free today, with a fairly good range of what was previously considered professional features. Here are a few examples. They are all free to use for home users/aspiring amateur editor. Test them all out and see which one you prefer.
When you start Shortcut for the first time , it will look different compared to traditional video editing programs, but that is mainly because it uses different panels that you choose which ones you want to view. Under the View menu you will find all panels. You can thus customize the interface as you like it. You can split the program on multiple monitors to make it easier to work with.
LightWorks is a truly professional video editing program . If you are used to, for example, Adobe Premiere or similar, you will probably recognize the layout intuitively and relatively quickly get into how it works. The program has most features you may need to edit your videos.
3. HitFilm Express
HitFilm Express is free, and it contains most of the basic features. If you want more features and effects, you can purchase add-ons for the application. One of the best-sellers is a Sci-Fi Adventure Pack, which includes technology to add fun Star Wars-like effects.
We recommend that you try out all of these examples, as they all have different features that suit different users. It's free, so you have nothing to lose but some time.
There's always an end in sight when working on an editing project. It's called a deadline. Meeting deadlines while providing top quality requires project management skills that are up to the task.