Video Editing – 4K and Graphic Cards

Movies - Videos

Video Editing – 4K

When I first started editing videos, I worked with 1K videos. The PC I built was adequate to that task and was a considerable upgrade to my off the shelf PC. When I built the PC, it was suggested that a graphics card like the GTX 1050 was fine for those sorts of videos.  Go Pro Studio worked OK but was prone to hang on occasion.

Later, I decided to upgrade my camera to 4K so I would have more pixels to work with when I zoomed in on more distant images.  I knew that 4K editing would be a challenge for the PC I built. It turned out that GoPro Studio was woefully inadequate so switched to Premiere Pro CC. I hoped that working with Premiere wouldn’t be that big a challenge but ran into issues almost immediately. read more

Cool Machine – How to Keep Your PC Cool & Stable

Keep Your PC Cool

Everyone wants a Cool Machine both literally & figuratively. We want the fastest and best machine and prefer not to pay too dearly for it. Consequently, we make compromises.  How to Keep Your PC Cool?

AMD or Intel

Keep Your PC Cool

Keep Your PC Cool

Until recently,  I had always built computers using Intel CPUs but I needed a fast machine to do video editing and AMD multiple processors were the best bang for the buck.

Which Processor?

Once we decided on AMD, we had to decide on a specific processor. At the time our budget focused on the Ryzen 5 1600, so we had it narrowed down a bit. Even here we needed to decide between 1600 & 1600X. Most reviews showed the 1600 was the best deal & it included a cooler so we went that route thinking we probably wouldn’t overclock.

Cool Memory

No cool machine is complete without cool memory so we opted

TFORCE Memory

TFORCE Memory

for 16GB Team T-Force Night Hawk DDR4 3000 (PC4 24000) which was considered a  bargain. We had not considered that the native speed for AMD was 2133 MHz so our 3000 MHz memory would need to be over  clocked (OC)!

Over Clocking Memory

In theory, you can over clock memory a MSI board by selecting an A-XMP  profile but keep in mind that the Ryzen supported MSI boards were very new at the time. After several BIOS upgrades and using special profiles (Try It!), I am finally able to achieve 2933 MHz on my memory.

Over Clocking CPU

At this point, we have already entered the realm of over clocking so we might as well over clock the CPU, right? Over clocking the memory didn’t seem to do any harm but overclocking CPUs that tend to run hot has it’s own risks.

We managed to get a decent over clock on the CPU by increasing the multiplier (CPU Ratio) to 37 which put our 3200 MHz processor at 3700 MHz. Even the auto configuration of the processor ran it at 3400 MHz so this was a modest over clock.

How Hot is Too Hot

Now that we had  out cool machine running memory & CPU at modest

Hot Server

Hot Server

over clocks we wanted to make sure it was stable & not so hot that it would be damaged.

We had to raise the CPU core voltage for stability so this made things a little hotter than we would prefer.

Research showed that most folks were happy with temperatures within the 30C-45C range.

Coolers – How to Keep Your PC Cool

We did a lot of research on possible cooling solutions.

Huge Cooler - Noctua NH-D15 SE-AM4

Huge Cooler – Noctua NH-D15 SE-AM4

There are huge solutions like the Noctua NH-D15 SE-AM4  assuming you have the room and budget for it.

The real question is whether or not the stock cooler is adequate. After all our search to keep our PC  cool necessarily included keeping our PC was self-destructing.

Is Our PC Stable – Stress Testing

Putting aside for a moment our search for an adequate cooler, we decided to see how cool our PC was in terms of stability. Our thinking was the PC must be cool enough if it can pass stability/stress tests.

The most mentioned stress we found was Prime95 so we promptly ran the program. When we saw temperatures in the 80C range and a few rounding errors, we aborted the program and made some adjustments.

Prime95 Rounding Errors – DRAM Voltage

The rounding errors were related to memory. It turned out that our memory over clocking was not as cool as we thought. The memory voltage (DRAM) from the BIOS was being changed during boot.

We had noticed this before but figured the lower voltage was probably better on the wear & tear of our memory and likely reduced system heat. As it turned out, system or memory heat was never a concern but getting the DRAM voltage right was.

T-Force Label

T-Force Label

The best source of memory voltage is the label on the memory.

While the MSI BIOS Try It feature had been close in assigning the  DRAM voltage (1.36 V), the MSI utility Command Center showed it had been changed drastically (.8 V) upon booting into Windows 10.

Changing the DRAM voltage in the BIOS from 1.36 V to the label value of  1.35 V fixed the issue. Now Command Center showed the same voltage as the BIOS & Prime95 had no errors!

CPU Core Voltage – Re-Addressed

As we found out with DRAM voltage, small adjustments can make a big

Re-Addressing CPU Cooling

Re-Addressing CPU Cooling

difference so we decided to lower or CPU core voltage from 1.4 V to 1.3875 V. 1.4 V is considered teh top threshold for most over clocks so dropping ever so slightly was helpful.

Back to Prime95

With our CPU Core & DRAM voltages lowered we decided to try Prime95 again & stuck out the tests watching out temps run a little lower than the previous run. Ultimately the temperature ran as high as 91 C by the end of the 30 minute torture test (Blended mode) of Prime 95.

This pretty much assured us that the stock cooler did an adequate job of cooling for our needs. We never intend to run Prime95 again so should never come anywhere near those temperatures.

Prime95 safe ? – Real Bench read more

Video editing PC

Upgrade

We used our standard PC & GoPro Studio for our smaller videos without a hitch so were hoping we could get by without a Video editing PC. As the videos got larger, Studio would hang periodically.

Building a Video editing PC

We  hoped to build a Video editing PC without breaking the bank.

We built the PC back in October 2017 but only recently ironed out some of the kinks with MSI and memory.Performance Results

AMD or Intel

We have historically stuck with Intel but you can get a lot more bang for the buck with AMD processors. Key to video editing is multiple cores and AMD is tough to beat in that regard.

We built our video editing PC with a AMD Ryzen 5 1600. This 6-core CPU was much more powerful than a comparably priced Intel CPU.

System Board

Once we had decided on a CPU, we looked for a compatible system board. The MSI -350M Pro-VDH fit the bill.MSI -350M Pro-VDH system board

None of the newer system boards were without issues and we had no intention of gaming.

We had numerous issues rebooting the PC until recently. BIOS updates for our system board and SSD M.2 drive have been key.

Current BIOS

E7A38AMS.AB0

Memory

We wanted the fastest memory we could fit into our budget. Team DDR4-3000 was considered a bargain for the price so we decided we would give that a try.Team - T-Force / Night Hawk 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR4-3000

Note that any memory speed above 2667 MHz is not officially supported by AMD and is considered over clocking (OC). Historically we have been wary of over clocking anything but it’s pretty common with AMD.

Additionally, you should use memory that is on their approved hardware. When our memory performed less than expected we tried more expensive memory that was on the list. That memory did no better than ours so we stuck with our original choice.

Through a series of BIOS updates we are currently getting 2933 MHz which is great but it hasn’t been easy.

Up until the latest BIOS update, the max we ever saw was 2800 MHz. We still can’t use MSI A-XMP but Try It works fine.

Our Memory

Team – T-Force / Night Hawk 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR4-3000 Memory – THWD416G3000HC16CDC01

SSD M.2 Drive

These days you need a SSD drive for your operating system but there are many to choose from. The M.2 version is much faster so this is the route most take.MyDigitalSSD - BPX 512GB M.2-2280 Solid State Drive

It’s a breeze installing software from a fast USB thumb drive to a M.2 drive. There were issues seeing the M.2 drive on boot but we sorted that out without too much difficulty.

More disturbing was issues with restart. There was almost zero chance that the PC would boot on a restart. We found that entering BIOS (delete)  seemed to allow the system to find the drive. Even exiting (F10) with no changes was enough to get the system to boot.

This was not critical to our operations so we lived with this for months.

Recently we got a firmware update from MyDigitalSSD and the PC reboots without issue.

Our SSD drive

MyDigitalSSD – BPX 512GB M.2-2280 Solid State Drive

Graphic Card – GPU

We opted for a GPU that was solid without being too pricey. We haven’t had any real issues with it other than downloading huge drivers for NVIDIA GeForce Experience.  I am not sure we even need those since we don’t do any gaming.EVGA - GeForce GTX 1050 2 GB

The GPU works fine even running dissimilar monitors. Currently we are running a 4K 32″ monitor (Display Port) & a 1K 28″ monitor(HDMI).

Our GPU

EVGA – GeForce GTX 1050 2 GB ACX 2.0 Video Card

 

Is it Worth the Effort?

We are now able to edit videos without too many issues. GoPro Studio has been left behind for Premiere CC and we are editing 4K videos.

We definitely like the speed of our video editing PC but it has not been without some headaches and it cost around $900 in parts & Operating System (Windows 10 Home). That didn’t include the recently acquired 4K monitor which is another story in itself.

 

4K Video Editing, Premiere CC & YouTube

Cooling Dilemma

The Perils of 4K Video Editing

We have uploaded hundreds of videos to YouTube so we had high hopes for 4K Video Editing. Mostly we used our GoPro Session 4 to shoot the videos and were pretty pleased with the results. The newer Session 5 was reasonably priced so we decided to take the plunge with 4K videos.

Software & Hardware

Problem & Solution

Software & Hardware

Initially we used GoPro video software and a standard Windows 10 PC for 1080p (1K) video editing but had to upgrade the PC when videos became longer.

Look for an upcoming post on upgrading PCs for video editing.

Premiere CC

GoPro Studio became problematic freezing up on long 1K  (1080p) videos so we reluctantly migrated to Premiere CC. Premiere CC is an awesome program but  very complex with a steep learning curve.

We did have issues with panning  1K videos. There was significant lag between the pan and the edit window.

PC Upgrade

Our upgraded PC was geared towards 1K video editing (1080p) but we figured we would give it a try before upgrading to faster PC that could handle 4K.

Here’s our benchmark tests from October 2017.

Research revealed that editing 4K videos in Premiere was not that much different than the 1K videos we were currently creating so we were hopeful.

GoPro Session 5

The GoPro Session 5 works as expected and does a few things better than its predecessor  including seeing video while shooting. Switching the GoPro Session to 4K mode at 30 fps was straight forward.

We now have 2 Session cameras so we can fire up our secondary camera when the battery runs down.

For those that are not familiar with GoPro  Session cameras, they are sealed units so changing the battery is not an option. The Session 5 will shoot videos while attached to a battery pack so that’s another option.

Our First Surprise

We tried editing the videos in Premiere & it didn’t seem that different from 1K editing.

Our 1st attempt to open a raw file (mp4)  from the Session 5 only in something other a video editor. We could hear audio in Windows standard software but no video. VLC would show the video but it looked awful. Our problem was that our monitor didn’t support 4K so we upgraded once again. Truthfully, it was well past time for a new monitor.

We set up dual monitors using our old 1080p monitor as our secondary monitor. Interestingly it now will open 4K videos now that is tied to a primary video. It doesn’t look nearly as clear as our 4K monitor but it suffices for mundane tasks like email & web browsing.

Premiere CC 4K & Proxies

Editing 4K videos didn’t seem to be much worse than 1K but we figured we would make it as easy possible for our hardware with proxies. With proxies, we are effectively editing at 1K and publishing at 4K.

Proxies require an additional encoding step so it makes our work flow a bit slower but editing is much easier.

It still doesn’t fix our original problem with panning 1K video but that’s to be expected.

YouTube & Our Second Surprise

We were anxious to see our 4K videos on YouTube and checked as soon as processing was done. The available quality was a mere 360 p so we feared something was amiss in our Premiere setup so started reviewing the mp4s we were uploading. Everything seemed in order and a little research showed that 4K could take a bit longer to show up as YouTube has to generate videos for every resolution.

Eventually our videos did show up as 4K  but you still need a 4K monitor to see them.

 

 

4K worth the extra trouble?

Our main goal with 4K was to have extra resolution, hoping zoom and panning would be clearer. The jury is still out on that since we haven’t processed enough videos to make a definitive decision.

We still have our Session 4 so we could shoot the same scenes with 1K & 4K for a one to one comparison.  However the Session 5 only shoots 30 fps (frames per second) at 4K while the Session 4 shoots 60 fps at 1K so maybe it’s not a foregone conclusion that Session 5 video will be better. I could always slow down the Session 4 to 30 fps but our goal was to have better videos than the Session  4 provided.

Perhaps the fps only applies to changing the motion of the video. If

Movies Word On Stage Shows Cinema And Hollywood

that’s the case, we won’t see many changes since we rarely adjust video speed.

Without a doubt the files are much larger so we have to make accommodations in cloud storage.

The proxy files are also large but we don’t store those permanently since they can be regenerated. We did the same with huge GoPro Studio AVIs.

Speedup My Computer – Remove Malware

Slowness

SpeedUp My Computer is a common request.

Typically we look for malware slowing down a computer but there are other issues  that can have a big impact on performance.

 

SpeedUp My Computer by Cleaning Files

cCleaner is a useful tool to speed up your computer even if malware is not present. It optimizes your computer and removes unnecessary files and registry entries.

It’s sometimes useful to run this before your anti-virus scan since it will remove lots of temporary files which won’t have to be scanned.

Faster Computer

Is your computer running slow? As it gets older it collects unused files and settings which take up hard drive space making it slower and slower. CCleaner cleans up these files and makes it faster instantly.

SpeedUp My Computer by Upgrading Hardware

Overworked hardware can also be an issue where an older computer

SpeedUp My Computer With CPU Replacement

SpeedUp My Computer With CPU Replacement

got upgraded to the latest Operating System. In this scenario, you should consider upgrading memory, hard drive and or processor (CPU) depending on cost and the

 

In this scenario, you should consider upgrading memory, hard drive and or CPU depending on cost and the resource you need.

In general, a memory upgrade is useful. If you have very little space moving files to an external drive and/DVDs might be the answer.

If you are trying to get the last bit of speed out of your old computer consider a new CPU.

SpeedUp My Computer by Removing Malware

Usually, I can scan a client’s computer with a remote connection like TeamViewer.

Virus warning on laptop

Virus warning on laptop

On occasion, that’s not possible so the client has to bring the computer in or I have to go to the client’s site. Site visits are the most expensive for the client since they typically incur travel charges and higher hourly fees.

 Virus Scan

Either way, we generally start out with a MalwareBytes scan. This can be problematic if the computer cannot access the web.

Local Computer Scan Without Access to the Web read more