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Old May 11th, 2010, 08:16 PM   #1
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Test to Compare Nvidia Cards for CS5

Can someone think of a test using XDCAM EX 1080/30p clips with CS5 using different nvidia cards modified to work with MPE acceleration.

I am going to microcenter to pick up a 9800GT 1GB (112 cores) and a GTX 275 896MB (240 cores).

I want to see what the difference is. And depending on whether my PC Power & Cooling 750w can handle a GTX 470, I might pick one up tomorrow to test as well (I have 10 drives, i7 920 & 2 raid controllers).

I hope to start test tonight.
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Old May 11th, 2010, 09:39 PM   #2
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Sounds like a plan Steve.

Ideally what would be AWESOME would be to put together a package / project with 20-30 second clips of different codecs - xdcam, hdv, avchd, r3d - have timelines for each, and then just progressively stack effects on every 20 seconds, add layers pip's etc.

That way there would be one controlled reference project EVERYONE can download and report playback performance AND render times for. That way we would all have a great idea of what GFX card / system combo is right for their needs.
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Old May 12th, 2010, 12:18 AM   #3
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Paul, I like your idea but the problem is that everyone's PCs are different.

I should mention that your post about the # of cores is what sparked my idea to test.

I am also ordering a FX 3800 along with a HP Z800; thus, I can include the FX 3800 in my testing once I get it.

I will get some avchd footage from my Sony XR500V tomorrow to include in the testing.

Here are my PC specs for testing:
Fresh install of Win 7 x64 Ultimate, CS5 Master Collection
150GB Velociraptor for OS & Apps
i7 920 (stock clock), 12GB ram
Areca 1680ix with 4 74GB Raptors in Raid 0 for video files
1 - 500GB Seagate 7200.11 for Media Cache
ASUS P6T

Here are the 2 cards I picked up to begin testing:
$220 - GTX 275 Micro Center - BFG Technologies GeForce GTX 275 OC 896MB GDDR3 PCIe 2.0 Graphics Card
$100 - 9800GT EE Micro Center - PNY GeForce 9800 GT EE 1024MB GDDR3 PCIe 2.0 Graphics Card
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Old May 12th, 2010, 01:46 AM   #4
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WOW!!!!!!!!!!

So far, the GTX 275 has handled everything I have thrown at it - 3 XDCAM EX layers, 1 black layer with 8 point garbage matte made into a vignette with 50% opacity and overlay mode, and a title. All 3 video layers have these effects: edge feather, RGB curves, scaled to various sizes. A gaussian blur is on one layer, sharpen is on another, levels is on one, one is keyframed to move horizontal over 10 seconds. I am probably forgetting a couple effects since I used so many.

Using CS4, I recently edited a 1080p clip scaled to a 720p sequence and with just RGB curves, my i7 CPU was almost maxed out. Adding a another layer as a vignette was too much for the i7.
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Old May 12th, 2010, 02:41 AM   #5
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Yes it will make isolating different card performance harder but dont forget that when actually rendering out sequences the CPU again becomes the important factor so overall by collecting enough data we would be able to get a good idea of both what different cpu's do for rendering and different GPU's do for playback. SO an overall end to end real world workflow of sorts?

Anyway I like what your reporting back on the 275 - did you want any footage of other cameras? Ive got some stock red footage and some stuff from my t2i so let me know.
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Old May 13th, 2010, 03:09 PM   #6
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Damn, I thought people here would be all over this. So many people keep asking "does this xx card work with MPE" or "how well does this card work".

Well, here is what I have found so far using a GTX 275:

4 avchd layers all scaled to 50% and no effects. adding 1 effect causes it to bog down.

3 avchd layers, all scaled to various amounts; the same 8 effects on each layer and I can add more effects without losing realtime playback.

All effects used are hardware accelerated.
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Old May 13th, 2010, 03:30 PM   #7
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I'd like to see the difference between the GTX 285/GTX 295 and the newer GTX 470/480.

I'm thinking about buying a GTX 470 but not sure its quicker than the 285/295 for Pr use.
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Old May 13th, 2010, 04:21 PM   #8
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The GTX 295 is essentially 2 GTX 275s in SLI but Adobe does not utilize more than one GPU; so, I don't see the 295 providing any benefit over a single 275.

There is a video from NAB showing the GTX 285 as capable of handling 3 layers, FX 3800 = 5 layers and FX 4800 = 7 layers. However, the 285 has more cores than both the FX 3800 & FX 4800, 240 vs 192.

So, I don't know what Adobe is doing to 'limit' the cards based on their price.

Back to testing: I exported 2 mins to H264 / 2 pass / 20Mb average, 28Mb max
It took 8mins 40s.

I know from experience using CS4, the CS5 export time is far quicker.
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Old May 13th, 2010, 05:35 PM   #9
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Good work Steve - I think its very apparent that adobe has indeed locked the number of tracks for the none Quadra cards to 3. The real test now will be to see using the 3 track limit, is there any difference between a 250,260,275?
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Old May 13th, 2010, 06:38 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Cook View Post
Good work Steve - I think its very apparent that adobe has indeed locked the number of tracks for the none Quadra cards to 3. The real test now will be to see using the 3 track limit, is there any difference between a 250,260,275?
Indeed but it will be a hard one to test as I doubt anyone has the same setup and all these GPUs
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Old May 13th, 2010, 07:56 PM   #11
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Well Steve said he has both the 275 and the 9800 - the 9800 has as many CUDA cores as the 250 both of which is half the core count of the 275. So by simply comparing those two on the same system we will get a good idea of how much MPE is using the CUDA cores and how many you really need. Its a start.
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Old May 14th, 2010, 02:29 AM   #12
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Some bad news, I had to return both cards today thanks to an idiot who screwed up my paycheck for last month's invoice; thus, I must wait two more weeks for some income. And it doesn't help that half of my invoice was reimbursements for purchases and rentals. Today, Best Buy & Microcenter became my revenue source from all the returns.

Anyways....I bet the 9800GT is enough for 3 layers and accelerated effects. Remember that playback of the original video is still done by the CPU.

However, I bet the faster the GPU, the faster the export times are.

Exporting the same 2min of video takes 46 mins in CS4.
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Old May 14th, 2010, 03:26 AM   #13
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I suspect that there will be no difference between any of the Geforce cards at all. All of the GTX are faster than Quadro (in their specs), but obviously Nvidia has either paid or otherwise made Adobe agree to NOT let the consumer level cards overhaul the Quadros in any aspect, so the slowest Quadro will be the common denominator here. I hope Im wrong, but how else do you explain the lack of support for any cards exept the 285 (is that the one Nvidia had overstocked I wonder?)
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Old May 14th, 2010, 07:59 AM   #14
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Thats bad news Steve, hope you get it all sorted out. Amazing speed boost in the render by the way

Yes Nik my conspiracy theory is that Adobe made it far too easy for us to find a work around and make any cuda enabled card to work. That way we get used to the power and speed but before too long hit the wall when we need more than 3 layers. Then it seems the only option will be to fork out for a Quadro

Unless some friendly hacker finds out what Adobe did in their code and writes a workaround. I know their used to be ways to both softmod and hardmod geforce cards to flash the bios and make them appear as Quadro's

Guess we wait and see...
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Old May 15th, 2010, 12:36 PM   #15
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Steve,

Now that we are back on track about testing, I have two suggestions:

1. Despite all it's current limitations, the PPBM4 home page benchmark can give you a good basis for comparison. It is only AVI material, but it gives you a comparison and since you will be testing with different nVidia cards on otherwise identical systems, the results may be telling about the impact of various video cards. (My results with MPE GTX-480 went down to 14.8 seconds)

2. If you send me a mail how to get in touch with you, I can send you a preliminary ppbm5 benchmark project / timeline with material comprising AVCHD, HDV and XDCAM in 29.97 and 25 fps for you to download. I'll contact you on your mail address.
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