CPU type and Camtasia 2019

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As the title eludes to, I need some advice on what type of CPU to use to improve timeline and rendering speeds. Presently, I use an AMD FX-3850, and would like to upgrade to an AMD Ryzen 9 3900x platform. It's a pretty big jump, but two main questions arise...
  1. Is Camtasia 2019 a multi-thread application?
  2. Is overall CPU speed the most important element in editing and rendering?
Thanks in advance!

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Posted 7 months ago

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Joe Morgan

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Yes to both questions.
With regards to running Camtasia.

How well Camtasia ingests  and utilizes those additional cores? Is the larger question.

In theory, if you purchased a computer with 2 processors. You should nearly double the render speeds.

More cores in a single processor? Not so much, but they can speed things up a bit.
Here is a post from a year or so ago. https://feedback.techsmith.com/techsmith/topics/rendering-performance-with-cam-2018

Whats important is this excerpt....
Yes I set up Cam 9 to use all of the cores, still it does not harness the power in a 16 core processor like the amd threadripper.

There are several similar posts to be found.Ones regarding dual processor computers and Camtasia's inability to harness them.  You would need the title of these posts to find them. 

Same story with other AMD processors with regards to core under-utilization.

So, upgrading may be a gamble. I just wanted to give you a heads up.

I'm a Intel guy. They interact seamlessly with most video editing programs, they support ray tracing and have an edge in this regard.Which is also an advanced form of artificial light rendering that Camtasia doesn't support.

AMD has been upping their game impressively over the last couple of years.
I think Intel got complaisant, and AMD's banging on the door. 

I can't speak to how well a 10 core 20 thread, or a 18 core  36 thread Intl i9-10980XE Extreme might fair in Camtasia?

A good strong 4 core 8 thread processor can render a video much faster than you generally edit one.
I'm not suggesting faster isn't better.
Depending on your workflow, if you're only going to achieve a modest increase in speed. Some upgrades may or may not be worth the cost.

If you finnish a video, and you're dead in the water until its rendered.Faster is unquestionably better.

If you can schedule renders at night, or a time you won't need the computer. Then theres that {:>)


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Joe Morgan

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Actually, the post I referenced started that his Threaddripper utilized all its cores in 2018 but not Camtasia 9.

So maybe this has been corrected for other processors as well. sorry about that.

He said it rendered 60% faster in 2018. Well,If a lot of cores are excluded in 9. Of course rendering speed is much higher.

I remember the thread more clearly, now that I re-read it. A processor is only so fast. Mine can render 1920 x 1080 videos at a rate of around 45 seconds render time.Per 1 minute of video.
It has a base clock of 3.4Ghz and a boost of 3.9

The Threaddripper and a base clock of 3.4Ghz and a  boost speed of 4.0

I asked him about his actual render speeds for comparison, which theoretically should be better.If all those cores mattered.  But he never replied back.  
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Muscle Whisperer

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I'm a newbie here, but spent a LOT of money on a very decent desktop computer I didn't need, only to discover that it rendered at speeds perhaps 20% better than my 4-year-old laptop computer.
There was absolutely no proportional benefit of time saved vs. money spent. Now I have a desktop and a new laptop, and still wait for my files to render overnight (spot on, Joe Morgan!)
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MW: What desktop did you buy? Specifics please.

If you have Windows Vista or later, you can watch the activity of a render using a Windows utility "Resource Monitor" Here I'm monitoring all threads (4 cores, 8 threads) of my i7 4790K. As you can see it uses everything I have.  The blue line distance from the green is the total Windows reserve.  Similarly, I could monitor Disk usage, Memory, and my GPU. This was a 60 second video 720p @30fps and rendered in less than 6 seconds. I think I once did 1080p ~ 25 seconds per one minute video.

Why shoot craps when buying a new computer? Visit "www.UserBenchMark.com"

It'll rate your computer parts and compare it to millions of others computers and parts. From the info on that site, it'll tell you what parts cost how much and for what benefit.

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Muscle Whisperer

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Thanks for the offer, Ed.
I went with an HP Z2 Tower G4 Workstation:
Intel i7-8700K CPU @ 3.7GHz
16.0 GB RAM
Windows 10 Pro 64-bit
GPU: nVidia Quadro p4000

Benchmarked as a decent gamer's machine, faster than anything I had before. I've looked at my Resource Monitor before, to check that I was utilizing all my cores at or close to 100%.
At present, on a 60-minute video I'm rendering just less than 1% every 16 seconds or 26 minutes total. So that's a good thing?

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Ed Covney

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And that's only 20% faster than a 4yr old laptop? Are you sure you're not comparing apples to oranges? i.e 720p vs 1080p or 15fps vs 30fps?
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Muscle Whisperer

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The above render was a 60-min. video at 30fps, 1080p, and took 26 min with the system at 100%. When I ran the render again at 480p it took 23 minutes, but the CPU was running at 42%, the cores at 30%. On one machine. I don't have the old laptop to compare. My computer isn't running anything else, and Task Manager says there are no other resources pulling at my CPU.
Can you explain why the system would reduce CPU usage instead of rendering more quickly? I do most of my renders at 480p because of storage limitations on the university server (I create videos of lectures given in a course).
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Joe Morgan

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I've been wanting to get back with you for a few days Doc. I've been under the weather and running on empty for several days now. Clarity of thought has been a struggle.

I ran some tests myself. A 2560 x 1440 project of mine was rendered. I downscaled it 480p and rendered it again. I used a clock to capture the results.Along with many other renderings,screen shots and tests, my images are telling, but a scrambled mess to sort through. I ran them when I was feeling pretty rough.

So I'll summarize. The 480p render only utilized about 60% to 80% of my CPU. However,rendering duration is a bit north of twice as fast .

I did this with other videos, and the downscaled 480p video always rendered much faster.Using less than 100% of my CPU.
I think the rendering engine of Camtasia is flawed.It should utilize more power.Now that I'm feeling better, I'll be getting with support on this.

I suggest you do the same. I think you have a separate issue. Being it takes you so long to render  to 480p.

Using Premiere Pro. I ran similar tests. It rendered everything faster using just the CPU. The GPU is reserved for rendering graphics and the like.
It also rendered 480p's using 100% of my processor.

Camtasia without using the CPU. Took twice as long to render like videos.
With the CPU enabled, it was still 20% slower than PP.

Content matters: Content matters: Content matters!
I rendered a test 5 minute 1920 x 1080 30fps video in Premiere Pro.
It completed in 47 seconds.
Pretty impressive don't you think?. How did I do it?
Well, I rendered a black video.5 minutes of pure black.LOL
At 480p it rendered in 5.77 seconds. I was so impressed I remembered that number.
Camtasia took up to twice as long to render black videos.

Content matters.
Depending on animations, edits, rescaled images, video formats, Image formats blah ,blah , blah.
Theres no yardstick to accurately predict just how fast any 1 computer.Will render  a particular project.
All projects are unique in one way or another.

Benchmarks are a general yardstick.There an indicator of CPU potential. But I take most results with a grain of salt.
Most benchmarks are based on video game-play, how many FPS it played at,etc.

Once again: Content Matters!
People playing the same video game while bench testing.Could be playing at a different level in the game.One person playing in a dark scene with little movement or background changes.
With others playing in a highly dynamic environment with lots of color. Even if you average out all users benchmarks.
All you really know, is how well a chip plays video games, on average.

I've never seen bench marks that tested the recording and editing and rendering of videos.
The number of factors are astronomical.Its not just the CPU, its the motherboard, RAM, and Blah ,Blah ,blah all over again.

My processor has a base clock of 3.4
Yours is 3.7
Ed's is    4.0
In a perfect world, yours is faster than mine,Ed's is faster than both of ours.

Content Matters: System configuration matters: Computers are not a perfect world.

Generally speaking, you can go by core clock speeds to judge how fast a processor is
An 18 core CPU running at 3.4 ? Will probably not fair much better than mine.
And run slower than yours.

To top that off. CPU manufactures are altering the way they go about rating their processors. So 4.0 might equal 3.8 a short time ago.
I'm willing to bet. The test changes favor the CPU.
Yielding favorable and marketable numbers over accuracy. I've seen articles and videos that support this outlook as well.

There are no concrete and cohesive data sets between manufactures.They set their own rules for testing.It's all a muddied mess to some degree. Always has been.

Whew, I think its time to walk the dog, shes giving me the eye and acting antsy, time to take a walk in the woods.

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Ed Covney

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Jesse - Your 3900x ratings can be found & compared here: https://cpu.userbenchmark.com/
GPU's are here: https://gpu.userbenchmark.com/

Almost as important as a CPU is what type of SSDs are you going to use? PCIe based NVMe SSDs are 5-10 times faster than SATA based drives. Below is a new system I started to build in mid July, I'll be done with all my testing hopefully by mid Jan 2020 - But I'm 100% satisfied with my drives, in order C:\ D:\ E:\ and a 3TB HDD.  (Note: PCIe is rated at 10GB/s, SATA at 6gb/s   or ~ 600MB/s.

C: and E: are standard M.2 NVMe drives mounted to the mother board, D: is actually 2-1tb drives in a RAID DIMM.M.2 socket (which could have also taken an OPTane drive.  UserBenchMark no longer tests RAMDisk my A: drive, but Bat file transfers yield about 6-8GB/sec A:\ to D:\   or   D:\ to A:\   
BTW Newegg has sales often on the Intel 660p, 1TB chips at $84.99 per.

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Thank you for all the informational replies everyone. I'm grateful for all input.

Since I only build a pc every 5-7 years, I think my money's best spent on maximizing the performance and platform so the setup will keep working well for rendering a few years from now. I'm currently running a build that's about 5 years old and it's now reaching it's end-of-life and should be replaced soon, as no logical upgrade path exists.

It's my understanding that CPU speed is the primary parameter for rendering speed, so any CPU that can shorten the rendering time is welcome. My videos are primarily 10-15 minute screencasts, but I create dozens of them per week, so my downtime during rendering consumes almost 1/3 of my time. Since money can be made, but can't be, any technology that shortens my downtime is a pretty easy sell.

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Joe Morgan

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If your wasting 1/3 of your time rendering videos.I have a suggestion.

Run both computers until the other one fails. Splitting projects between them.
Provided its workable.
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Similarly, I suppose I could try batch rendering to a single folder, then cut/paste the rendered files to their appropriate folders later. 
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I don.t use anything fancy.  My laptops and PCs are old.  What I do is make sure they have SSD drives and then create and edit on one machine, export the file as a zip file with everything on it which I render on my other machine while I'm editing the next one.  I find this method also gives me back up security if one of the files get corrupted.