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Old June 27th, 2012, 10:40 PM   #1
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Transcoding t3i footage in Premiere Pro CS5?

Hey, just wondering if you guys transcode your footage from your t3i/other canon dslrs or not, and why. I haven't been, but I saw someone talking about it and it seemed to improve performance in premiere a lot. Also: if you do, how do you go about it?

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Old June 27th, 2012, 11:12 PM   #2
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Re: Transcoding t3i footage in Premiere Pro CS5?

transcode footage? premier is suppose to be able to read dslr footage natively and no transcoding are needed.
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Old June 28th, 2012, 01:04 AM   #3
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Re: Transcoding t3i footage in Premiere Pro CS5?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Evan Bourcier View Post
... it seemed to improve performance in premiere a lot.
Premiere CS5 to CS6 can easily deal with native H.264 from the T3i - there was a time when transcoding might have helped but not with modern computers and the mercury playback engine.
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Old June 28th, 2012, 11:10 AM   #4
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Re: Transcoding t3i footage in Premiere Pro CS5?

Unfortunately we don't all have fast computers with mercury capable cards. :(
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Old June 28th, 2012, 11:41 AM   #5
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Re: Transcoding t3i footage in Premiere Pro CS5?

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Originally Posted by Donald McPherson View Post
Unfortunately we don't all have fast computers with mercury capable cards. :(
This.
I have a 2010 13 inch Macbook Pro, with 2.66 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo, 4 GB 1067 MHz DDR3, and NVIDIA GeForce 320M 256 MB. I have trouble with smooth playback and stuff sometimes, and I didn't know if this would help. I also still don't entirely understand the mercury playback engine hah.
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Old June 28th, 2012, 12:48 PM   #6
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Re: Transcoding t3i footage in Premiere Pro CS5?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sareesh Sudhakaran View Post
Premiere CS5 to CS6 can easily deal with native H.264 from the T3i - there was a time when transcoding might have helped but not with modern computers and the mercury playback engine.
I think many user mistake mercury playback engine to accelerate anything, it doesn't. Playback on your timeline is still cpu dependable, something which you see the most when fast scrolling the timeline. I have been a former premiere user (using edius now) and have played with the cs6 trial with mercury engine enabled. I have a i7 950 with 12gb memory, so no cutting edge but also no slouch.

The playback on my time line was smoother on edius 6 when I scrolled the timeline fast. Exporting was faster in edius 6 as well when going from dslr 1080p mov to a mpeg2 1080p file, only when outputting to a h264 file you see the mercury engine kick in and make a difference but hey, edius can utilize the build in gpu on the latest cpu's (making $$ high end videocards unnecessary) and making mp4 outputs trailblazing fast as well.

Don't get me wrong, premiere is great but its a system hog, you need a cutting edge pc (and very expensive one with all the right hardware, LOTS of ram, dedicated videocard, raid and whatnot) to get the most from it and then it can be really fast. Edius is still 32bits and feels more responsive to me then premiere cs6 does on my pc and it does that without any hardware acceleration help. Just getting started, I imported 33 gb of dslr footage, in edius i was editing after 20 seconds, in premiere I had to wait 10 minutes. Ok, its buidling waveforms and doing other stuff, but when I need to do something quick, right now and deal with audio later, premiere is a painfully slow starter.

Also multicam does not benefit from mercury, I was able to handle more camera's in premiere because it seemed to lower the preview to get realtime performance but then it started to do very weird stuff, sometimes not moving at all, jumping ahaed and back, so if you want to do decent multi-cam, again premiere is no better then edius 6, maybe on a super optimized starship computer but for most user with a bit more basic setups, its not that great performer..
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Old June 29th, 2012, 12:49 AM   #7
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Re: Transcoding t3i footage in Premiere Pro CS5?

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Originally Posted by Noa Put View Post
I think many user mistake mercury playback engine to accelerate anything, it doesn't. Playback on your timeline is still cpu dependable, something which you see the most when fast scrolling the timeline. ...
According to the guys at Adobe, CS6 uses the GPU for playback...at least that's what they told me at the launch!

I've heard great things about the new Edius, too.
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Old June 29th, 2012, 01:46 AM   #8
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Re: Transcoding t3i footage in Premiere Pro CS5?

When you look at the ppbm5 test results all top performers have been heavily overclocked and use minimum 24gb of memory and raid, sure all those users might confirm what Adobe is advertising. Maybe the playback acceleration is for getting a good preview? On my more down to earth system Edius at least is more responsive then Premiere, even with mercury enabled. I"m sure for comparable results (if you install edius on a system with the right board and cpu with build in gpu) in both realtime playback and output speed you can build a system for Edius at half the price for a comparable Premiere system. That being said, Edius has several area's where it needs some catching up to do, like the way it handles audio, but it's a very solid and stable performer that also has very good collorcorrection tools build in.
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Old June 29th, 2012, 08:24 AM   #9
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Re: Transcoding t3i footage in Premiere Pro CS5?

To clarify how the Mercury engine works, Adobe Premiere Pro sometimes renders in real time using the CPU, sometimes renders in real time using the GPU, and sometimes pre-renders, to allow you to manipulate your video. If you have a weak GPU or no GPU, it won't be used for this purpose.

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Old June 29th, 2012, 03:56 PM   #10
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Re: Transcoding t3i footage in Premiere Pro CS5?

Quote:
If you have a weak GPU or no GPU
I understood Premeire now uses all cuda cores so you would think more is always faster yet to me it's still unclear what exactly gives premiere a performance boost, f.i. in the ppbm5 test there is a I7 950 system with a gtx460 card in the top 10 of best performers, so it seems the card alone is not what makes Premiere fly?
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Old July 1st, 2012, 03:26 AM   #11
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Re: Transcoding t3i footage in Premiere Pro CS5?

Noa,

You have to be careful in interpreting the results. At the top of the page there is a warning:

Due to differences in caching between CS5 and CS5.5, it can be a good idea to select only the version you want to investigate.

The changes in caching have caused results for the MPEG2-DVD test to be almost three times slower with CS5.5 than with CS5.

Cristobal's results on rank #10 and #8 are illustrative of this effect.
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Old July 1st, 2012, 05:20 AM   #12
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Re: Transcoding t3i footage in Premiere Pro CS5?

So back to the question. Do we lesser mortals transcode or not?
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Old July 1st, 2012, 06:52 AM   #13
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Re: Transcoding t3i footage in Premiere Pro CS5?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Harm Millaard View Post
The changes in caching have caused results for the MPEG2-DVD test to be almost three times slower with CS5.5 than with CS5.
Does cs6 perform the same as cs5.5?
What do the changes in caching mean, is it something adobe can correct with a update?
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Old July 1st, 2012, 07:18 AM   #14
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Re: Transcoding t3i footage in Premiere Pro CS5?

I've got a three-year-old computer (i7 860, 2.8GHz, 8GB RAM, no RAID) with a pretty ordinary Radeon HD4800 graphics card, and CS6 runs pretty smoothly with footage from my 600d without transcoding. Mind you, I've not tried anything more complex than 20 minutes or so of foorage from the 600d.

I notice little difference when I transcode to Cineform. I also find that CS6 is a bit faster overall than CS5. I do use Cineform for lossless exports, and somtimes to get better color rendition from my Sony cam, especially with the reds.

Renders are a bit slow sometimes when I've got lots of effects on a clip, but transcoding doesn't help that at all.

If you're not transcoding and everything seems fine... well, it probably is!
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Old July 1st, 2012, 08:15 AM   #15
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Re: Transcoding t3i footage in Premiere Pro CS5?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Noa Put View Post
Does cs6 perform the same as cs5.5?
What do the changes in caching mean, is it something adobe can correct with a update?
CS6 performs slightly better than CS5.5, but there is a weird thing going on when you compare direct export versus using the AME queue. AME queue is around 20% slower than direct export with MPEG2-DVD, but 30% faster than direct export with H.264. However DV AVI is around 3 times slower with the queue versus direct export. Sizable differences and I have not yet received a clear explanation from Adobe as to the cause of this.

The changes in caching between CS5 and CS5.5 have shown that our MPEG2-DVD test was the culprit, because it contained three identical nested sequences after each other, something that will never happen in real life, but that we did to keep the download size small. CS5 could cache the transcoding results from the first instance and was clever enough to use those results for the second and third instance. That no longer happens in CS5.5 and CS6 and that is why the same test takes about three times as long in comparison to CS5.

It is a problem in the test and not something to worry about in practical life and that is why we have overhauled and modified the tests to avoid these kind of issues in the CS6 version of PPBM6, which is not yet ready BTW.

@ Mike:

The faster the CPU in the system, the less need or even benefit you will have from trans-coding. If you have a dated Q6600 CPU @ stock speed, you will probably benefit from trans-coding, but if you have a fast CPU, like the i7-2600 or i7-3930, trans-coding to an intermediate format will not be beneficial at all, it will only slow you down. Your i7-860 will probably not gain anything from trans-coding either. It is a balance between bigger file size and the inherent memory and disk requirements on the one hand and the CPU load on the other. In your specific case the bigger files will likely offset a lower CPU load due to the limited memory in your system.
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