Join Todd Kopriva for an in-depth discussion in this video What are the memory settings for optimum performance in After Effects?, part of Adobe After Effects CS5: Frequently Asked Questions.
Frequently asked questions about After Effects CS5. What are the optimum memory settings for performance in After Effects CS5? There is no one answer to this question, because all computer systems, projects, compositions, sets of footage, are different. However, learning some general principles can really help. First, let's go to the preferences. Edit, Preferences, Memory and multi-processing. You always want to reserve plenty of RAM for other applications.
If you don't reserve enough RAM for other applications, and you're running those applications. Those applications are going to try to take that memory anyway. Actually the operating system is going to take the memory for them. And that means that After Effects is going to have what is currently stored in its ram swapped to the hard disc. This activity takes a very long time. This is a certain way to decrease performance. So, rather than let the swapping happen, just reserve enough ram for the other applications to start with, and you'll avoid the problem. Also, you can use render multiple frames simultaneously multiprocessing, which is off by default. Have the check box checked to use render multiple frame simultaneously multiprocessing.
When you do, be sure to reserve plenty of CPU's for other applications. Notice I have 8 CPU's, and I'm reserving two for other applications. I could go even higher, and perhaps even get better performance. The reason is very similar to the reason for allocating plenty of RAM to other applications. If you have other software running on your computer, and that software is competing for CPU resources, the operating system is having to struggle to schedule all those processors. Also, After Effects is a multithreaded application that can spread the processing of one frame across many processors.
This is done separately from render multiple frames simultaneously multiprocessing. So it's possible that if you don't reserve enough CPUs for their applications, you can actually end up with After Effects fighting with itself over some of your processors. So, leave this number relatively high on an eight core system start with at least two. Also, make sure that your RAM allocation for background CPU is high enough for this sort of work that your'e doing. If you're working on high definition television or digital cinema and you have RAM allocation for background CPU set to 0.75 gigabytes none of the background processes will have enough RAM to do any rendering.
So they won't even bother trying. They won't start up. And the entire point of having render multiple frames simultaneously turned on will be defeated. So, one general thing to keep in mind, you don't necessarily need to be using all of your CPU's to get optimum performance. Nor do you need to have absolutely all of your RAM used by After Effects to get optimum performance. Optimum performance very often comes when not quite all of your RAM is being used by After Effects and not quite all of your CPU's are being used by After Effects.
Leaving headroom means that your entire system works more smoothly and more quickly. Let's click Cancel to get out of this dialog box. For additional tips on improving performance and aftereffects, go to the search field in the upper right of the application window and search for improve performance. And click the After Effects CS5 version of the improved performance document. This page includes many many tips there are improving performance with After Effects.
Read through this page, follow the instructions as appropriate for your system, and keep in mind that there is no such thing as one set of optimum settings. Optimum settings differ from computer system to computer system, and project to project.
- What are the optimum memory settings for performance in After Effects?
- Why are my vector graphics from Illustrator pixelated?
- Why can't I see my changes until I let go of the mouse button?
- Why can't I see all of my motion path in the Composition panel?
- Why is there no sound in my output file?
- What's the best format for exporting from After Effects?
- Why is my output file huge, and why does it not play smoothly?
- How do I find tutorials and information about After Effects?