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Old April 26th, 2003, 07:14 PM   #1
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PC Magazine says Vegas is Slow

PC Mag has come out with a review of VV4 and states:

"Unfortunately, performance was disappointing. On a 1-minute test file, which included a 30-second chroma key and spinning title, Vegas took 4 minutes 52 seconds to render before writing to tape, compared with 1:42 for Premiere. Encoding the same project to MPEG-2 took 6:20 for Vegas compared with 3:51 for Premiere."

They liked virtually everything else about it (I did a search and it doesn't look like this review has hit DVinfo yet). For the record I HATE Premiere, but those numbers are pretty bad on a relativistic scale. Any thoughts Vegas fans? Too bad they couldn't do a third compare to Edition 4.5 or 5.0. I'm still on the fence between VV and Edition.
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Old April 26th, 2003, 09:03 PM   #2
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Here's the link. At least for MPEG encoding one question is do they use the same encoder and what kind of quality differences resulted, etc.

http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,4149,1020103,00.asp
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Old April 26th, 2003, 09:15 PM   #3
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Premiere is the dog. They (CNET) got it wrong.
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Old April 27th, 2003, 07:32 PM   #4
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He was looking for a reason not to give it a 5/5--My guess is that he didn't know how to optimize for rendering---I am not saying that Vegas is a speed demon when it comes to rendering before output---but it certainly is as fast as Premiere, Avid and FCP.
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Old April 27th, 2003, 07:38 PM   #5
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SO who has done a benchmark comparison of the NLE's for rendering speed?

I know that one was done a while back for Mac vs PC rendering the same After Effects projects, and Mac was blown away.
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Old April 27th, 2003, 07:47 PM   #6
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WHOA!

I went looking for the old posting of the benchmark duel, and found they have done an update of the face-off.

See "Benchmark Duel: Mac vs.PC Round 2"

at www.digitalvideoediting.com

The Mac loses again!
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Old April 27th, 2003, 09:29 PM   #7
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The topic here is Vegas is slow, or so says PC magazine. Let's stay on topic, please.
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Old April 28th, 2003, 09:53 AM   #8
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Getting back to the PC Mag review, is there any sense that the conclusion is unfair or that the test video was not appropriate?

Is the reviewer's use of a chroma key something that could slow Vegas down substantially?

I was not expecting such a performance disparity between Vegas and Premiere. Comments on this forum suggest that it is not so. What, specifically, could have produced these results during PC Mag's tests?
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Old April 28th, 2003, 11:01 AM   #9
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This is how I see the difference between Premiere and VV. With VV I can work and "fire for effect" or check my work easily and quickly which keeps the workflow generating. At the end of a editing sequence, I tell VV to render. Which doesn't really matter to me how long, but that it is done in excellent quality. Premiere is the complete opposite. I would have to work render to check which is forever and then work and work and render, though by the time I finish assembling ther eis no need to render, Premiere's bench time is over 3 times longer than the bench time in VV. VV took 4 hours to render a production I created that was an hour and half long in MPEG2 and as an AVI, it may be slower but like Stuart said, which encoder because Premiere and VV can use different encoders...regardless with VV I'm in bed and sleeping or eating or playing with the XBOX or whatever while it rendering so it really doesn't matter to me. :) Stuart has a good point, TMPEG vs Procoder or Mainconcept or whichever render times will vary.
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Old April 28th, 2003, 11:41 AM   #10
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been using Vegas since fall 2000..
i spend my time editing .. i watch previews in RT ( PIV 2.4) if i have 4-5 layers then i do ram preview ...

for me i find my work-flow is very FAST using Vegas.

i don't know if Vegas is fast/slow on rendering as i render when i'm sleeping. i start rendering before i go to bed and when i awake in the AM it's finished. or i do rendering while i'm out shopping/ at a movie etc... and i would render this way using any NLE ...

i've used premiere .. and based on the review i'll give premiere the faster rendering time ( though i never saw it) BUT the time that i've used premiere all that extra time i gained from rendering was wasted on re-booting that interrupted my work-flow ...
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Old April 28th, 2003, 07:01 PM   #11
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One of the problems I had with the review is that he didn't really mention just what he rendered and how his PC was configured. That can make a big difference. Generally the rule of thumb is that the more complex the fx, the longer it takes to render. For instance if you do a motion blur you are going to increase your time.

I think the point is well taken---If you are churning out product under strict time constraints then you worry about rendering. If you can do it while you sleep then who really cares---Its kind of like building the car then waiting for the paint to dry.
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Old April 28th, 2003, 08:26 PM   #12
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While PC Mag is pretty good on computers, I would rather get the views from other experienced professional videographer users rather that pc users.
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Old April 28th, 2003, 08:38 PM   #13
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Nathan, I agree with you and that's surely what we're getting here.

It still doesn't answer the basic question: Is the PC Mag review correct about rendering? If not, why?

Jan Ozer may not be a professional videographer, but he has been doing an excellent job covering digital video for PC Mag. In this case, he examined and mentioned all the key areas of the product (DVD, AC-3, color correction, audio) and compared them to Premiere, which lost in every category. The only ding was for performance, and I think he's the kind of guy who is perfectly capable of analyzing that.

But anyone can make a mistake. Did he?

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Old April 28th, 2003, 08:50 PM   #14
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True, I did not read the article, and in many ways I would rather have my system configured by a PC geek just to get some of the bugs out.

One of the things you want to be sure of is that the reviewer is using the product the way a pro would. Further, are their shortcuts that improve the product more?

I know in the NLE I use (Cinestream) that using the titler can be an unwieldly process. Many would use Photoshop or other products to do their titling and integrated with CS. Also there were other tricks that might require something like AE in other NLEs, that were already in CS.

In general everything else being equal, if they are close in performance, I would regard them as roughtly the same.
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Old April 29th, 2003, 10:53 AM   #15
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Vegas Video

Hey all, I'm the PC Magazine reviewer who reported the slow render times for Vegas. I appreciate you all pointing out this could be a mistake, but I need some more input to track down any possible errors. I'll be reviewing Premiere 7 soon, and can post any updated results then.

Just for the record, my rendering test included two major clip segments:

The first had four layers
Bottom video
20 second chroma key
20 second spinning logo (360 degree spin)
A title with animation

Then I dissolved into clip 2 and performed a 40 second 320x240 image pan from the upper left to the lower right. In used original audio in all tracks with one background audio track. Nothing exotic, but some fairly common design elements. I performed all tests on a Pentium IV 3.06 GB with 1 GB RAM running XP pro.

Just so you know, before I run bad performance numbers I check the popular literature and with the vendor. I starting thinking performance might be a problem when reading on forums that users were opening multiple instances of vegas in the background to render while editing in the foreground.

I also spoke to Sonic, who felt that the high level of filtering they performed might be slowing them down. That said, I saw no obvious qualitative difference between Premiere and Vegas.

I also worked with Sonic to verify that my configuration was sound, even buying a new disk drive hoping to improve performance. Nothing changed the results.

Just so you know, I'm aware that both programs used the main concept MPEG encoder. In head to head pure encoding trials without any rendering, performance was similar.

So - I'd be interested in hearing your thoughts about any possible errors in my test procedure.

Thanks in advance.

Jan Ozer
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