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I'm going to very quickly talk about System Configuration and the Mercury Playback Engine, and this is pretty geeky, so don't feel bad if it's a little bit confusing. There is just a couple of things you need to know. You've probably read in the marketing material from Adobe that they use this thing called the Mercury Playback Engine to make everything work faster, quicker, and smarter. Well, the Mercury Playback Engine is not really a physical item, it's actually a combination of how much RAM you have in your computer, how fast your video card is and how much memory it has, and how many processors you have in your computer and how fast they run.
All those combined create what's called the Mercury Playback Engine. So for best practices, the more RAM you have in your computer, the faster Premiere will run. So for instance, on this Macintosh, I can very quickly find out about how much RAM I have, and in this case I have 6 gigabytes of RAM installed on this computer. That's actually pretty low. This system will run well, but the more RAM I throw at it the faster a lot of things will happen. As a matter of fact, some computers can have 16, 32, 64, even 192 gigabytes of RAM.
I think that might be a little bit much if you get 192. But I do recommend the starting off with 12 gigabytes of RAM is going to give you much more robust performance. The second thing is the processor inside of your computer. Now a lot of computers not only have a single processor, but they have multiple dual and quad core processors that all work together to make things happen faster. The faster your computer, the more responsive again Premiere Pro will be.
The final part of the equation is the video card in your computer. Now most people don't realize that the graphics card not only has RAM on it, just like your computer, but they are also rated for speed. So some of the newer graphics cards can have 1 or 2 gigabytes of RAM--mine has about 1 & 1/2--and they're designed to handle a lot of the video processing and take the load off the CPU inside your computer.
If you don't have one of these fancy graphic cards, the newer graphic cards, don't worry about it, because Adobe Premiere Pro 6 can leverage the power of your processors and the power of your RAM and give you pretty great performance. So really that's all the Mercury Playback Engine is. It's a combination of all three of these elements. The newer and faster your computer, the more layers of video you can create without having to wait for it to calculate that fuzzy glow as something flies across the screen.
So if you're finding that the performance of Adobe Premiere Pro is not as robust as you think it should be, adding a little more memory or maybe even swapping out the video card in your computer could be the solution. Upgrading to a brand-new computer with lots of RAM, of course, is the best answer, but probably not for your wallet.
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