Is there a connection between gpu and dynamic ram?

david-ruby wrote on 4/25/2012, 1:45 PM
My new machine:
i7 3.4ghz 8mb cache, asus mobo p8z68-vz PRO/GEN3, 16gigs of ram. 5 cooling fans, 760 watts of power, nvidia 560ti graphics running latest driver, seagate cudas as boot and raid, win 7 pro. More than enough machine to make this work.Fresh install of everything on this.

I have a system just built that still should be seeing no dropped frames with vegas 11 but when you do a cross fade you get a random drop here and there. Even the guys at are confused. Seems like changing the dynram to different numbers pacifies the drops for a bit but then get a few in other timeline playbacks.
This is raw dslr footage right out of the camera.1920X1080 24p. No fx at all.
I tried a single sata, raid setup with hardware controller, raid setup off the mobo. You name it. I did it. Same results everytime on dropped frames. Random they seem. Anyone have a clue to what I may have missed here. Besides my sanity?? LOL
Thank you for any feedback.


rs170a wrote on 4/25/2012, 2:46 PM
[...760 watts of power...}]

As powerful as 760 watts sounds, it might be underpowered for what you're asking of it. A user on another Vegas forum was experiencing similar problems until he upgraded to a 1000watt OCZ Gold Certified PSU.
In his own words, "The difference is astounding. The most obvious differences that I can see off hand (just installed it minutes ago) is thumbnails of photos etc now appear instantly. My browser is lightning quick. It's as if I bought a new computer. Everything opens faster now, like it should. I've been having so many weird side issues, the only thing I could think of that might help was the PSU, and it seems it was the right thing to do."

david-ruby wrote on 4/25/2012, 3:30 PM
We researched this out as well and there is plenty of power for everyone onboard says asus as well. Thanx for the feedback. : )
Steve Mann wrote on 4/25/2012, 4:48 PM
"We researched this out as well and there is plenty of power for everyone onboard says asus as well. Thanx for the feedback. : ) "

Umm, no.
I just did a quick look at your specs (and made a couple of assumptions), and your system will consume up to 735-Watts. Your 760-Watt supply is being stressed. PSU load shows up as slightly lower voltages on all rails. Not much, maybe 0.1-Volt, but when it's on the 5-V and 3.3-Volt rail feeding the processor or memory, your system will slow down.

Power supplies work best at 70% of their rated capacity. Meaning your 760-Watt supply would be happiest with a 532-Watt load.
Grazie wrote on 4/25/2012, 5:03 PM
Having experienced the results of 300>500 PSUs and have them fail, I ponied-up for a 1kw Power Station that runs on natural gas! Not really, but having the 1kw I can forget about any PSU issues.


david-ruby wrote on 4/25/2012, 9:51 PM
Steve. I did a few online tests and 500 watts is average for this system and our dell workstation has just that. It runs fine with vegas 10.I will grab another power supply though Steve and have a test. I trust your words. ; )
But I also downloaded adobe c5.5 and it works on playback flawless. I was devistated. My vegas is stuttering and adobe at full rez is blazing the footage. OUCH!
Hmmm.If I jumpship from a company that I started with back with Sonic Foundry Soundforge days I will be bummed. That is along time of being faithful.But I have got so much backlog. Sad day again. I pray for the miracle. ; )

P.s. I just now read what you said about 70% of psu. I will give that a try Sir Steve. Thank you for your knowlege here. Crossing fingers. : )
Jay Gladwell wrote on 4/26/2012, 7:49 AM

"But I also downloaded adobe c5.5 and it works on playback flawless. I was devistated. My vegas is stuttering and adobe at full rez is blazing the footage. OUCH!"

And that was one of the main reasons I switched. I got tired of fighting Vegas. :o(

rmack350 wrote on 4/26/2012, 12:07 PM
As near as I can tell, Vegas has never, ever, ever been designed to guarantee full framerates. The whole point of it was that if it missed a frame it just moved on.

The tradeoff was that it would always play *something* without first rendering, but it would never play perfectly enough to play out to tape directly from the timeline. Even if you prerendered your entire program, Vegas would not be guaranteed to flawlessly play out to tape from the timeline.

I'm using the example of playing out to tape here because it encompasses what you're asking for which is perfect playback, and might give you a sense of the design goals for many NLEs. Some had playout as a design requirement, Vegas didn't.

That was probably a mistake on the part of Sound Forge. Many customers want perfect playback from the timeline.

One thing about PPro is that it makes an effort to manage your expectations by marking parts of the timeline red or green to indicate whether it'll play perfectly. And PPro renders things to disk.

You can make prerenders to disk in Vegas as well, and the playback seems to be just fine when you do it, but Vegas doesn't prompt you to do it like PPro does. I think this is something the Sony team could work on. Maybe a prerender format that is all alpha until Vegas starts dropping cached frames into it. In this way Vegas would be hanging onto ram preview frames. Vegas would need some sort of checksum method to make sure the prerendered frames match the timeline content.

Jay Gladwell wrote on 4/26/2012, 12:26 PM

"Many customers want perfect playback from the timeline."

Yes, and I'm one of them. I want perfect playback when it's a native file type that Vegas is alleged to play! That was the problem. It would gag on playing MXF files (and MP4 if taken straight form the BPAV folder) from a Sony EX3--no FX, no color grading, nothing.

I conducted a most simple test, taking two identical clips and placing them on the time line, one in Vegas and one in PPro CS5. There was a one-second dissolve between the two clips, nothing more. When I played the timeline in Vegas it skipped over the dissolve every time. When the timeline in PPro was played, it played smoothly showing me exactly what the dissolve looked like, and that was without any prerender!

I understand that heavily treated footage will have an effect on playback, but when you can't even play a basic video file without skipping, that's unacceptable to me.

FWIT, in PPro there are actually three color indicators--yellow, it will play smoothly, but it's not guaranteed, red, it will not play smoothly, guaranteed, and green, it will play smoothly because it's been rendered.

I miss Vegas, but I don't miss the headaches it was giving me.

rmack350 wrote on 4/26/2012, 1:10 PM
This is raw dslr footage right out of the camera.1920X1080 24p. No fx at all

It's probably not an issue of disk throughput. Whatever your DSLR camera is recording, it's definitely compressed enough to reliably play back from a single 7200 RPM hard disk. So maybe it's your PSU. Maybe. Or more likely it's the media vs Vegas.

As for Dynamic RAM, Vegas caches frames into it as it decompresses and renders them. Playbacks after that will usually be a little better than the first but for things like AVCHD and other long GOP codecs the frames are interdependant. Presumably the codec still has to do the work even if Vegas cached the frame to RAM.

The thing about Dynamic RAM is that frames are being saved into it and flushed out of it all the time. The exception to that is where you've explicitly created a RAM preview but even then it's not marked and I don't know how long Vegas holds onto that preview. But the point is that for the most part frames cached into RAM won't stay there forever so you would expect to see playback change.

Yes, the more memory you allocate to RAM Preview, the more frames can be cached, but the tradeoff is less RAM available for other tasks that Vegas might need to do. Basically, trying to fiddle with RAM preview setting to improve playback isn't going to get you very far.

Assuming you've done all the other things one does to improve playback, like making sure the project template matches the footage, then I think you probably need to get friendly with Selectively Prerendering video (Shift+M). It's not instantaneous, and it eats up disc space, and it often dissappears when you change something on the timeline, but it's just about the only way to be sure to get near-flawless playback.

rmack350 wrote on 4/26/2012, 2:03 PM

Granted, Vegas' playback ought to be better than it is. PPro does a better job. I like that it gives a visible indication of what will and will not play. If nothing else, it manages expectations.

I'm afraid I don't have PPro here on my own machine at work. We have CS2 on other systems with Axio cards but we're migrating away from it because it was so incredibly unstable. I'm sure the solution was to get rid of the hardware but what actually happened was that the edit projects slowly migrated to FCP. Anyway, I don't have it to look at

On the Vegas MP4 playback from the EX3, I can't say anything about footage from the camera but prerenders to what Sony is saying is an XDCAM EX template (HQ 1920x1080x24p, 35 Mbps VBR MP4) play back fine for me on a 3.2GHz Core2Duo 8400. Similarly, prerenders to the 50Mbps MXF template also are playing flawlessly for me. If footage straight from the EX3 doesn't then I guess there's a difference between what the camera records and what Vegas creates. But I can't try it since I don't have a clip from a camera.

david-ruby wrote on 4/26/2012, 7:15 PM
Thanx for the info mackie. I guess my last attempt is to try a psu change but I think it will be a failed attempt. That sounds like a defeatest attitude. Too much beta testing here on veg 11. Need to get back to work I guess. I did spend an hour with nvidia and went through drivers with them and nothing helped so here I am.
Again lol. Or was that a tear.
rmack350 wrote on 4/26/2012, 8:16 PM
Maybe a cheaper test would be to temporarily remove some things rather than buying a new PSU. For instance, if your board supports onboard graphics then take out the nvidia card for a while. I know that sounds drastic but the idea here is that if your power usage is peaking near the capacity of the PSU then removing a few things would get you into a more reliable envelope. Maybe Steve can help you with that.

The reason I suggest the nvidia card is that it's probably the single biggest power draw in the box.

So, when I look at playback on my work unit see a little fluttering of the framerate readout once in a while, even in the best of circumstances. However, if I couldn't see that readout I probably wouldn't notice it in the preview. So I have to ask you, how big a problem are you really seeing? Is perfection the enemy of good here?

And, yes, I agree that you should just be editing, not fussing.

riredale wrote on 4/26/2012, 9:20 PM
Can one assume that you have done actual power measurements using an in-line power meter like the popular Kill-A-Watt rather than just using online estimators to arrive at a consumption figure?
Soniclight wrote on 4/27/2012, 4:56 AM

Probably of no particular use to you since our multicore systems are different (see specs below) and I'm not addressing the PSU>GPU issue. I have an APC 1500 battery backup unit that has a digital display showing real-time watt consumption of my computer + my dual 24" monitors which already use about 70 watts) and my PSU is a 650 Watt one.

I just did a test to see how many watts my system is churning up while simultaneously...

-- rendering out an uncompressed .AVI from a .veg with pretty complex FX, transitions, several tracks, etc. (no audio) in Vegas 10e 64-bit

-- rendering out a .png sequence in Particleillusion (also rather layered).

-- Firefox 4x with two windows (not playing video)

-- Thunderbird email client and Notepad

-- 3 Windows Explorer windows minimized

Result: With all the above going and my CPUs at max, the load was only between 384-415 watts. Shutting Particleillusion shifted the CPU load to about 90% but the watt range stayed essentially the same. And again, this includes the 70 watts used for monitors. And my speakers and amp BTW (probably 50 watts or so).

Point: It's always good to have more than enough PSU but there is also a fair amount of marketing hype to have one buy way more than one actually may need. But that's just my p.o.v. and experience. I'm not a pro film maker, just a serious amateur who built his last two PCs.

Basic System Specs:

Windows Version:7 Home Premium 64-bit
Processor:AMD X6 1090T Phenom II Black Edition (6x3.2 Ghz cores) - no overclocking
RAM:16 Gb. DDR3
Hard Drives: Multiple SATA2 7200 Rpm.
Sound Card:M-Audio Delta Audiophile 2496 (Analog I/O)
Video Card:nVidia GeForce 430 GT
Video Capture:Onboard and TI chip IEEE PCI card
DavidMcKnight wrote on 4/27/2012, 9:33 AM
David17, also have followed your tests on the FB group. I agree you should be editing and not fussing, and I want to make sure I'm reading you correctly; your problem is an occasional dropped frame on a cut or crossfade, is that correct?

And that's preventing you from doing work? If that's all you're seeing I'm willing to bet lots and lots of folks see that and don't think twice about it, they keep on going with their edits, finishing work, invoicing clients. I know I do.

Point is, IF that's all you're seeing, be glad. Others are having (at least with prior builds) unexplainable hard crashes / dumps that are very difficult to troubleshoot. If you're having those as well I can see the desire to wring out the problem. But if it's just a dropped frame or two, I'd ignore it and keep on working. Should it play back smoother? Probably. But as others have said this might be a tradeoff for being able to throw anything on the timeline and not have to transcode to a single native format.

On another possibly helpful note, how does your timeline performance act if you set your preview ram to 0?

david-ruby wrote on 4/27/2012, 12:16 PM
The drop of frame rate always makes the video syop and start or stutter and a cross fade will stutter along and sometimes just skip ahead after stopping the frame. Kinda hard to edit when your riding a car with a bad manual clutch lol.
david-ruby wrote on 4/27/2012, 12:26 PM
Hi David. Yeah it is more than just a drop frame hesitate move on down the timeline.
It is even on cuts randomly.My assistants dread editing because on one of our other machines vegas crashes at least twice now very hour. The timeline playback issue is not making us be able to even use fx without pre rendering everything. I have been a user again since sonic foundry days and have never seen this before. It should not be this hard to edit. I am actually using an older versin to edit at this point and our assistant has moved to adobe. Lotsa work to do today so I am off. Thank you all for the great advice and support. See. This is what you get with a great community like this. : )
david-ruby wrote on 4/27/2012, 1:15 PM
I will say if I turn the dynamic preview up to say 1500 playback is good for a bit. What would this be telling me?
DavidMcKnight wrote on 4/27/2012, 1:17 PM
What about setting it at 0?
david-ruby wrote on 4/27/2012, 1:29 PM
Setting to 0 actually amkes it abit worse. Og course I set it to 1500 and it is still hiccuping at crossfades again. Weird how you can loop the same crossfade and after about the third time it will play it fine. Still seems like something is slow to cath up then does. Weird.
riredale wrote on 4/27/2012, 3:00 PM
On my older system (state-of-the-art about 7 years ago), the Preview video will run at less than 29.97 unless I set the Quality to "Preview/Auto." I run the window in a corner of my V7 program, which is full-screen on my 24" display, and it's been good enough for me to complete numerous projects. I guess it would be nice to have more CPU horsepower and run at the "Good" setting, but "Preview" is adequate to see what I'm doing.

This is running HDV; if I use GearShift to run DV proxies, then I can work with fairly complicated stuff before framerate suffers.

BTW as I mentioned above, as for power supply adequacy it's important to measure actual power consumption before buying. My older system only burns about 250w during render. Obviously, current video cards and processors are going to up that number, but probably not as much as some would have you believe. So measure it.

As an aside, it IS possible that your supply is failing you in that regardless of the official "rated" capacity it could be that one of the supply rails is not carrying its weight. A temporary swap with another supply would tell the tale. I've had two supplies fail over the years, and one of them took out two hard drives with it. I doubt a supply is your problem because I suspect a failing supply would manifest itself by causing system freezes.
rmack350 wrote on 4/27/2012, 5:40 PM
Weird how you can loop the same crossfade and after about the third time it will play it fine. Still seems like something is slow to cath up then does. Weird.

Not weird at all. This is exactly how Vegas has always used preview RAM.

Preview RAM does at least two things that I know of:

1) it holds RAM Previews created when you key Shift+B
2) it holds or retains frames that were previously shown in the preview window (at the preview window's resolution, btw).

It's #2 that's in play here. Any time you see a frame in the preview window it's a result of Vegas rendering that frame as it plays out the timeline. After the frame is rendered it persists in the RAM preview cache to be immediately available the next time it's needed. Since Vegas doesn't have to render that frame it can immediately move on to render the next frame.

The important point about #2 is that nothing gets cached until after you've played it, so it doesn't help until subsequent plays, and when the preview RAM fills up it has to flush old frames. And of course the frames are uncompressed, so if you allocate a gig of RAM to it then it can store a gig of uncompressed frames. And that gig of preview RAM won't be available for anything else Vegas might need to do.

As you say, setting the preview RAM to zero is harming your performance. Sometimes it helps if the wind is blowing "just so" and other times setting it to zero hurts. In your case it hurts and Vegas probably needs at least a few megabytes allocated to preview RAM. Oh, and the fact that setting it to zero makes things worse suggests that there's a case #3 for what preview RAM is used for.

Regarding "fussing", if PPro causes you to fuss less then by all means use the tool that works. There's a certain calculus to the decision - is it worth learning a new edit system? Probably yes. Knowing how to use more tools is good, spending time to do it is another matter.

Fussing with Vegas' preview RAM is a bit like studying entrails to predict the future. You could fiddle with this forever and never really be much wiser.
david-ruby wrote on 4/27/2012, 10:23 PM
LOL. Love the entrails bit rmack350. That cracked me up. I get what your saying and yeah it is getting crazy.Had to give up. I will wait to see what happens on the next update but will have to try ppro for awhile. Learning curve is actually pretty easy from years of experience on Vegas. Come on Sony. Make daddy proud.
: )
rmack350 wrote on 4/28/2012, 11:53 AM
Rather than studying entrails, more like this bit of copyright enfringement: