Some tips on getting faster rendering performance with Camtasia 9

  • 6
  • Article
  • Updated 4 months ago


Choose hardware that works better for the rendering performance


Camtasia 9 has a set of system requirements which can be found here: https://www.techsmith.com/camtasia-system-requirements.html but if performance is your major concern, you usually don't want to get a machine that just meets the minimum requirements. Here is what I would get for a machine today:
  • Get the latest generation of i7 CPU, 16 GB or more memory;
  • Get a dedicated video card with at least 256 MB or more dedicated video memory;
An integrated graphic/video card would work, but a dedicated card would usually work better. Some machine may have more than one graphic cards, Camtasia picks up the default card for rendering work. However you may be able to pick which card to use in the control panel (something like this in the screenshot): 



Also dedicated video memory work better than shared video memory. You may run: dxdiag.exe then "save all information..." to find out how much of the dedicated video memory your video card uses:


  • Get a SSD hard drive
A SSD drive has faster disk I/O and helps the performance in many ways during recording, editing and production process.

Avoid building less performed timeline

Camtasia 9 is a very powerful tool that can build very complex timeline, if we don't pay attention, we can easily run into performance issue. Here is a list of tips for timeline building process.
  • Avoid very long recording
Stick with short and multiple recordings and avoid long recordings. Not only short, usually smaller files can be moved around easily, they are more performed on timeline as Camtasia would spend less time retrieving the data from a shorter and smaller file.
  • Avoid using file on a network drive
When possible, copy the files you use to the primary local hard drive, this usually gives you a better performance.
  • Scale down very large image files before importing to Camtasia
If you have image files that have very large dimensions and you use a lot of places on timeline as very small thumbnail sized image, consider scaling it down before using it in Camtasia, this is especially true if you have a lot of them. As Camtasia will scale it on the fly during rendering process and big image also consumes more memory and resources, this hurts the performance very quickly.
  • Avoid excessively edited timeline
If you have hundreds of editing to remove "umms" and "ahhs" etc for a recording, consider flattening this (producing to a file) timeline, then bring it back for further editing (adding effects, callouts etc other stuff). An excessively edited timeline can quickly bring your resources and performance down and flattening the media in a pre-edit step can save your a lot of time for the real touch step.
  • Avoid building huge timeline
Groups, effects, transitions, behaviors etc are some of the cool features Camtasia provides that can really make your video engaging. However they may also hurt the rendering performance if not used properly. For example, if you have nested groups, or multiple effects stacked on each other, or have dozens of tracks stack on each other, or any combination of above. Also if you have a timeline that uses a lot (eg: hundreds) of media files, clips, callouts, markers, captions, transitions, effects etc building objects, the performance can go down quickly for project loading, timeline editing and canvas previewing, as well as production. So you may consider flattening the timeline or even part of that's done with changing/editing and then bringing it back to timeline would sometimes help the performance dramatically.

Choose production preset that works best for you

Camtasia 9 bumped up some production settings that can affect the rendering performance. For example, by default instead of using "Automatic" frame rate in CS8, we use 30 in CS9; instead of using 50% video encoding quality, we use 60% now in CS9. For some project, setting this back to use "Automatic" and "50%" would render 50% faster with a lot smaller file size without too much difference in video quality. So you may play a bit and find a production preset that works the best for the type of video you produce.


 
Another tip is that we usually want to match this with editing dimensions. If they are different, an additional scaling process is involved for every frame runs through the encoder. So if you want to change the produced video size, changing it in editing dimensions would usually give you a better performance. 


 
Some advanced registry flags that you may use to tune up the rendering performance

Note: changing registry data incorrectly can break how Camtasia works and we may change or even remove those registry flags without any notice, so it is at your own risk following on this session.
 
Production rendering priority:
By default, Camtasia 9 use "1" here, which is THREAD_PRIORITY_ABOVE_NORMAL in table below. "1" uses roughtly 70% of your CPU power, so you still can use some other light weight applications or activities such as browsing a web and sending/receiving emails etc. There are other flags you may use in case you want Camtasia to use more or less of your machine's CPU power: 

THREAD_PRIORITY_LOWEST                   -2
THREAD_PRIORITY_BELOW_NORMAL    -1
THREAD_PRIORITY_NORMAL                    0
THREAD_PRIORITY_ABOVE_NORMAL     1
THREAD_PRIORITY_HIGHEST                   2



Production renderer scheme:
By default, Camtasia uses "2" for this flag. Meaning it uses software renderer for frame composition. You may change this flag to "0" and the "CSRenderLibRenderer" flag (next one down below) to "1" (which is the default) to use GPU for frame rendering and composition.


CSRenerLibRenderer:
By default is "1", means GPU rendring for preview. "0" means software rendering for preview. Production can also use this flag to control which renderer to use for frame composition when the "ProductionRendererScheme" flag above is set to "0".


Hopefully, with tips above, you may get a better rendering performance with Camtasia 9. We are striving to make the rendering performance faster and love to hear your feedback on how we may improve it.

Thanks and have a great holiday season!

Kevin Liu   
Photo of Kevin Liu

Kevin Liu, Lead Software Engineer - Camtasia Windows

  • 112 Posts
  • 16 Reply Likes

Posted 2 years ago

  • 6
Photo of kayakman

kayakman, Champion

  • 6363 Posts
  • 1878 Reply Likes
Kevin, thanks for all this insight
Photo of 4evermaat

4evermaat

  • 92 Posts
  • 24 Reply Likes
why is this in registry only, and not made available to the user?  can you document some of theother registry switches?
Photo of Kevin Liu

Kevin Liu, Lead Software Engineer - Camtasia Windows

  • 112 Posts
  • 16 Reply Likes
Hi 4evermaat,

In Camtasia 9, we expose some of the rendering settings in Edit->Preferences->Advanced->Hardware Acceleration. And for settings here and some more advanced and hidden ones we use some defaults which work for most of cases. Since not all our customers are comfortable making registry changes, we tend to expose them only when needed (eg: sometimes Tech Support will use some hidden ones when interacting with customer issues). 

Thanks!

Kevin L.
Photo of 4evermaat

4evermaat

  • 92 Posts
  • 24 Reply Likes
I mean, why hide them in the registry instead of putting them in the advanced section or another tab that would allow the user to explore?   Doesn't seem to be that dangerous.
(Edited)
Photo of Kevin Liu

Kevin Liu, Lead Software Engineer - Camtasia Windows

  • 112 Posts
  • 16 Reply Likes
Sorry 4evermaat, I just saw your message. Yeah, your suggestion makes sense to me. We also need to run all this by our UX folks, they usually have the final say about what we would expose from the UI.

Thanks!

Kevin L.
Photo of Bill Coughlin

Bill Coughlin

  • 160 Posts
  • 13 Reply Likes
HI Kevin I have limited Camtasia 9 Memory/CPU usage on one of my computers in the lsat year
but it was WAY simplier than you explain above

I thought I did it right in Task manager??

Currently im crashing when editing and rendering my movies

This is a new computer HP Q119; with 12 gigs of ram, Core i5-6400t
CPU speed: 2.2 GHz (2.8 GHz max turbo boost) CPU Cache: 6 MB TDP: 35 W
Integrated graphics: Intel HD graphics (GT2)

My much less powerful Sony Tap21 actually is more stable.. Takes longer but I managed to limit Camtasia CPU/memory usage to 80% and it works perfect.

Now for the life of me I can not find how I controlled Camtasisa memory and cpu usage.

Any ideas how to optimize windows 10 to prevent Camtasia from constantly crashing on dinky little 7 minute movies.

Yes kevin I do see your other tips, THANKS but IM talking about just controlling the Camatasia memory / cpu usage as they max out and crash me.

:) thanks Bill
Photo of Kevin Liu

Kevin Liu, Lead Software Engineer - Camtasia Windows

  • 112 Posts
  • 16 Reply Likes
Hi Bill,

Sorry Camtasia crashes on your computer. I too am curious why it'd crash, would you mind contacting our Tech Support and sharing your crash dump with us? The most recent crash dumps usually can be found in this folder: C:\Users\[your_name]\AppData\Local\TechSmith\Camtasia Studio\CrashDumps

Thanks!

Kevin L.
Photo of Bob Lewis

Bob Lewis

  • 353 Posts
  • 174 Reply Likes
Thanks Kevin Liu, this is very helpful information.
Photo of Jeff Cukierski

Jeff Cukierski

  • 7 Posts
  • 2 Reply Likes
Currently have two Core i7 6800k rigs solely built for Camtasia renderings. Right now both machines only see 75% CPU utilization evenly spread across all 12 threads. Changing the thread priority registry key mentioned above to '2' had no effect on CPU utilization for either machine - even after restarting and triple checking registry values. Is there anything else that may be holding us back??? 
Photo of Kevin Liu

Kevin Liu, Lead Software Engineer - Camtasia Windows

  • 112 Posts
  • 16 Reply Likes
Hi Jeff,
It could be something project-specific. During the production (encoding) process, it also relies on that decoding can give it fast enough frames for it to process. One caveat in decoding TREC streams (yes, TREC is Camtasia recording format), for example, is that it is basically single-threaded so that could be the bottleneck. There’s also a known bug that remix type of callouts are rendered every frame even when their content is unchanged. So if you have these on timeline, it may drag the encoding process down and not fully use the CPU power. If you have MP4 etc other content on timeline, you may see better/more CPU usage.  And 75% may not be that bad actually, compared to CS 8. Another factor could be that if you run production in hardware mode (default is software mode), it may use less CPU, but put some work on GPU.

Thanks for the feedback!

Kevin L.
Photo of Jeff Cukierski

Jeff Cukierski

  • 7 Posts
  • 2 Reply Likes
Thanks for your quick response. Yes, you're correct that v9 does utilize the processors a little better than 8. In our testing with 8.6, utilization was approx 65-70% as opposed to 75%. Enabling GPU render does reduce CPU usage, but always increases render time by 2-5%. 

Specifically, we're working with .TREC files. Each file is approx 2 hours in length, recorded at standard XGA resolution. Each 2 hour file receives a fade transition at the beginning and end then is rendered into WMV format, retaining the native resolution - so there isn't much going on. 

It's moreso a passing curiosity about why the machines seem to be limited to 75%. We've already met our goals for render speed - I'm just curious if we can get full utilization of our purpose-built PCs
Photo of Jeff Cukierski

Jeff Cukierski

  • 7 Posts
  • 2 Reply Likes
Have you guys been able to replicate the CPU cap issue on faster processors yet? I just updated both of our i7 6800k machines to Win 10 Build 1703 and the 70-75% CPU cap persists. Genuinely curious why we can't get the process to 100% utilization on either machine. 

Let me know if someone from your team would like to look at our machines remotely and maybe play with registry settings, that is - if you havent been able to replicate the same issue. 
Photo of 4evermaat

4evermaat

  • 88 Posts
  • 17 Reply Likes
I use a program called ProcessLasso and you can either:
  1. Exempt Camtasia from ProBalance restraint
  2.  classify Camtasia as a 'High Performance Process'
  3. Set the Park Control (I think you can use Park Control as separate program without needing ProcessLasso)
(Edited)
Photo of Watch Music

Watch Music

  • 5 Posts
  • 0 Reply Likes
i need to discuss soe major things,
i use camtasia for making youtube videos using images and voice over narration like The Richest Channel. But its a complex process which include multiple layers of images (background blurred images + normal images) , voice naration, music clip, animations on images and behaviours+transitions on all stuff. Problem is that , when i produce all this complex stuff to make video, it takes a loooooooot of time for small videos of 3 to 4 minutes. I am using camtasia 9.0.3 on hp core i7 with 6GB of Graphics (4GB Intel Shared + 2 GB Nvidia Geforce). I have set camtasia to use NVIDIA card but still it is very very low. When i render video, it produce it fast but i am using multiple images ( a lot of images) instead of videos, it should process it faster than videos but not. Please do something about it. I am using camtasia for 2 years and has always faced this issue. If your reporting agents are lazy then please hire me so that you make quick fixes as soon as possible. 
Photo of Watch Music

Watch Music

  • 5 Posts
  • 0 Reply Likes
Check out this video:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lZ4PDH8sXmU it is made with camtasia
Photo of Hoang Dang

Hoang Dang

  • 1 Post
  • 0 Reply Likes
Hello anyway I could build a render farm with camtasia 9? do you provide render engine for the farm?
Photo of Maura Hernandez

Maura Hernandez

  • 1 Post
  • 0 Reply Likes
I made this video with camtasia and I stopped rendering.
https://youtu.be/YxVw0Dz6Pn8
(Edited)