Which MB? My personal experience (MBA+Adobe problems)

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Ultra AleM, Jan 16, 2013.

  1. Ultra AleM, Jan 16, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2013

    Ultra AleM macrumors 6502a

    Ultra AleM

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2012
    Location:
    Italy
    #1
    Hello. My name's Alessandro. I live in Italy and got a fantastic MacBook Air four months ago. It's the 256GB Model (it costs 1.500€ here, like 1.990$).

    I really like it, but I am having some problems with Adobe Premiere Pro. It takes 30-40 seconds to load my Xbox 360 15 minutes long records (720p). it freezer and sometimes cannot preview smoothly.

    I think this is due to 4GB of RAM. I don't think it's a CPU (even if it's kind of slow 1.8ghz i5) or GPU problem.

    So I could sell this for 1.300 or 1.400 € being in perfect conditions and add 100 or 200 euros to buy a new one.

    I don't know which MacBook's better for me. I need a MacBook for portability. I cannot spend more than 1600 euros. And it's kind of pissing off because for only 1.000€ I could get a Intel Core i7, 8GB of RAM, dedicated GPU FULL HD Windows notebook. But I like MacBooks because they sync with iPad and iPhone.

    I like the MacBook Pro 13" (for 1.500€ you get a Intel Core i7, 8GB of RAM). But it has a lower resolution screen and a 5.400 rpm hard disk.

    I like the Retina 13" MBP but it has only 128GB of memory and a stupid GPU for that 4 million pixel resolution.

    I'm really confused. What should you do? I like Airs but seriously they cannot edit videos. I think.

    Thanks a lot!
     
  2. simsaladimbamba

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
    Location:
    located
    #2
    You could circumvent the freezing, if the footage would not be using a highly compressive codec like H.264.
    Premiere Pro can work with ProRes or DNxHD, or better for Premiere Pro, Cineform (from the company that makes the GoPro cameras).

    You would have to transcode the footage though, via MPEG Streamclip for example.

    Video Compression
    Why It Matters & How To Make The Most Of It

     
  3. Ultra AleM thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Ultra AleM

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2012
    Location:
    Italy
    #3
    So you think it's the codec fault and I'd have the same problem with a MBP?
     
  4. Ultra AleM thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Ultra AleM

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2012
    Location:
    Italy
    #4
    Is the velocity of codec decompression related to CPU?
     
  5. seveej macrumors 6502a

    seveej

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2009
    Location:
    Helsinki, Finland
    #5
    In my humble opinion, this should not happen. Can you post some details, such as Software versions, file size, file location (on SSD or on external source) etc.

    RGDS,
     
  6. Ultra AleM thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Ultra AleM

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2012
    Location:
    Italy
    #6
    The software version's the latest CS6.

    The file is 1.05 GB because it is a 15 minutes HD video.

    It is on the serial 256GB SSD.
     
  7. seveej macrumors 6502a

    seveej

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2009
    Location:
    Helsinki, Finland
    #7
    Could you do the following:
    • Before firing up premiere, open activity monitor, note (on paper):
    - free memory
    - page ins / page outs
    • Open Activity monitor's CPU history
    • Start your work in premiere as usual, but keep an eye on the CPU history
    • If premiere freezes, inspect Activity monitor (are the page outs coming in hard, are memory and CPU redlined)
    • After you finish, check the same data from activity monitor and compare.

    If you have trouble figuring out the results, you can post them here.

    RGDS,
     
  8. Ultra AleM thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Ultra AleM

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2012
    Location:
    Italy
    #8
    I don't know what's the CPU history, anyways I did a test with some screenshots.

    This is the situation before launching Premiere:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]



    While this is after I launched it for 20 seconds while it's loading the clips (it freezer when it loads, because it cannot show me a preview)

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  9. seveej macrumors 6502a

    seveej

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2009
    Location:
    Helsinki, Finland
    #9
    CPU Usage and CPU History are small stay on top -windows of the activity monitor, which you can access through the window-menu or Cmd-2 and Cmd-3.

    Based on these pictures (some details are not visible, such as free memory after starting Premiere and the Actual CPU utilization), It does not seem that the process of loading and creating previews is putting your MBA down to its needs.
    What I'm trying to say, is that it does not seem as if your MBA would be incapable of handling the task. Do I get the correct impression, that the opening/loading of the clip makes Premiere temporarily unresponsive, but does not cause it to hang or crash?

    RGDS,
     
  10. simsaladimbamba

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
    Location:
    located
    #10
    In order to find out, what may be wrong with your video, you can use the following three applications to analyse a sample video file.
    When done, you can use the "Report" (VideoSpec) and "Export" (Media Inspector) button to export a report,
    attachable to your next post via the [​IMG] button.
    In MediaInfo you have to go to the Menu Bar, select View > Text and copy the text via CMD+A > CMD+C and paste it via CMD+V into your next post.

    And 1.05 GB for 15 minutes of HD video (probably 1080p?) is not that much, if it would be using an editing codec, that would be at least 20 to 30 GB.
     
  11. Ultra AleM thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Ultra AleM

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2012
    Location:
    Italy
    #11
    Correct. It does not respond. It stays for tons of seconds as freezed, I cannot do anything. And if a import a 50 minutes long HD video it takes 4 minutes before I can actually interact with it.

    ----------

    Here the report is


    ***** Risultati file analizzato *****

    *** Parametri Generali ***
    - Nome: Segment_0001.mp4
    - Contenitore: MP4 - QuickTime
    - Dimensione: 1,149 GB
    - Durata: 14mn 18s
    - Bitrate: 10.7 Mbps

    *** Parametri Traccia Video ***
    - Formato: H.264/MPEG-4 AVC
    - Bitrate: Max.: 21.0 Mbps / Media: 10.4 Mbps / Min.: Non definito
    - Frequenza fotogrammi (fps): Max.: 60.000 / Media: 59.940 / Min.: 59.880
    - Profilo di codifica: High@L4.0
    - Dimensione immagine: 1280*720
    - Proporzioni Pixel: Non definito
    - Visualizzazione proporzioni: 16:9
    - Interlacciamento: Progressivo

    *** Parametri Prima Traccia Audio ***
    - Formato: AAC - MPEG-4 audio
    - Bitrate: 219 Kbps
    - Risoluzione: Non definito
    - Rate: 48.0 KHz
    - Canali: 2 (stereo)
    - Posizione: Front: L R

    *** Varie ***
    - Sottotitoli: Nessun sottotitolo
    - Album: Non definito
    - Artista: Non definito
    - Genere: Non definito
    - Data di codifica: UTC 2013-01-14 19:15:45
    - Artista Album: Non definito
     
  12. seveej macrumors 6502a

    seveej

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2009
    Location:
    Helsinki, Finland
    #12
    Someone with more experience in later generation After Effects can either confirm or deny whether this behavior is expected or not.

    Having started my nerd-career with machines barely making one MIPS (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Instructions_per_second), I got used to the software design methodology of software being designed to be unresponsive or very limitedly responsive while completing a longish task (The progress bar was an invention to show the user, that things are happening although no other visual clues were available). The rationale behind curtailing responsiveness was that the process could thus be finished more quickly and in a more orderly fashion. Thus maybe I am more tolerant towards a software behaving like that.

    But to get back to what was noted earlier, the codec used in the source data has a huge influence on how long the process of loading (and rendering previews etc.) a clip is. If you can influence the codec of the source material, you might try to experiment somewhat, but be prepared for massively increased file sizes.

    In any case, the MBA is not designed primarily for video work. If you do this kind of stuff now and again, the wait will not endanger your health unduly On the other hand, if you spend hours with this on a daily basis, I might consider a used quad-core 15" MBP to be more suitable.

    RGDS,
     
  13. Ultra AleM thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Ultra AleM

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2012
    Location:
    Italy
    #13
    But it is a standard capturing codec. Sony Vegas handles it well. I don't know if it's Premiere fault or my MBA fault.

    Anyways I captured a video of what happens. You can see what's going on here.

    http://youtu.be/3YWhnSRdSMU
     
  14. seveej macrumors 6502a

    seveej

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2009
    Location:
    Helsinki, Finland
    #14
    The Video clip helps. The quick glance I was able to steal of activity monitor really does seem as if your computer is redlined (out of memory, full CPU utilization). Again, I'm the wrong person to answer on Premiere behavior, but I can see why you're annoyed.

    But (unless the poles have reversed) H.264 is not a capturing codec, it's first and foremost a delivery codec, trying to aim for picture quality and file size, while sacrificing computing power.
    Capturing codecs usually aim to be more or less lossless, and necessitate very little processing power to display (while creating huge files). See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Video_codec

    RGDS,
     
  15. simsaladimbamba

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
    Location:
    located
    #15
    What codec is it then?

    In order to find out, what may be wrong with your video, you can use the following three applications to analyse a sample video file.
    When done, you can use the "Report" (VideoSpec) and "Export" (Media Inspector) button to export a report,
    attachable to your next post via the [​IMG] button.
    In MediaInfo you have to go to the Menu Bar, select View > Text and copy the text via CMD+A > CMD+C and paste it via CMD+V into your next post.
     
  16. Ultra AleM thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Ultra AleM

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2012
    Location:
    Italy
    #16
    I had posted it. It's my capturing card default codec.

    ***** Risultati file analizzato *****

    *** Parametri Generali ***
    - Nome: Segment_0001.mp4
    - Contenitore: MP4 - QuickTime
    - Dimensione: 1,149 GB
    - Durata: 14mn 18s
    - Bitrate: 10.7 Mbps

    *** Parametri Traccia Video ***
    - Formato: H.264/MPEG-4 AVC
    - Bitrate: Max.: 21.0 Mbps / Media: 10.4 Mbps / Min.: Non definito
    - Frequenza fotogrammi (fps): Max.: 60.000 / Media: 59.940 / Min.: 59.880
    - Profilo di codifica: High@L4.0
    - Dimensione immagine: 1280*720
    - Proporzioni Pixel: Non definito
    - Visualizzazione proporzioni: 16:9
    - Interlacciamento: Progressivo

    *** Parametri Prima Traccia Audio ***
    - Formato: AAC - MPEG-4 audio
    - Bitrate: 219 Kbps
    - Risoluzione: Non definito
    - Rate: 48.0 KHz
    - Canali: 2 (stereo)
    - Posizione: Front: L R

    *** Varie ***
    - Sottotitoli: Nessun sottotitolo
    - Album: Non definito
    - Artista: Non definito
    - Genere: Non definito
    - Data di codifica: UTC 2013-01-14 19:15:45
    - Artista Album: Non definito
     
  17. Ultra AleM thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Ultra AleM

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2012
    Location:
    Italy
    #17
    Ok, so: summing up we understood that the problem is due to the CPU and RAM of my MBA which is not so good to make Premiere run smoothly, especially with H.264 video-files which require a good cpu to compute.

    The alternatives are a MacBook Pro 13" or a MacBook Pro 15". I'll make a pro/cons thing so you help me, I'm confused. Especially forced to buy ****** stuff because here in Italy Apple likes to make us pay x2.

    My MacBook Air
    Pro
    1. Design
    2. Portability
    3. High res. display
    Cons:
    1. Slow CPU
    2. Few RAM
    3. Slow GPU
    MacBook Pro 13" (second model)
    Pro:
    1. Newer CPU
    2. Faster CPU
    3. Double RAM
    4. Better display colors
    5. Faster GPU
    Con:
    1. Less portability
    2. No SSD storage
    3. Lower resolution

    MacBook Pro 15"
    Pro:
    1. Fastest CPU
    2. Dedicated GPU
    3. Better AUDIO system
    4. More display space
    Con:
    1. NO portability
    2. Price (over 2.000 dollars here)
    I do not consider the Retina 13" because they said me it has a stupid GPU which is not suitable for 4 million pixels. And the 15" is too expensive.

    What should I do?
     
  18. snaky69 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2008
    #18
    I strongly disagree on that point. I take my 15incher everywhere without a problem. That, and the fact that your usage would enormously benefit from a quad-core cpu.
     
  19. Ultra AleM thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Ultra AleM

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2012
    Location:
    Italy
    #19
    But it's 2.400$ :'(
     
  20. snaky69 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2008
    #20
    If you don't make money ripping xBox videos, then suck it up and wait while things load, else, buy the best tool for the job.

    I don't think there's much more to say about it, really.
     
  21. duervo, Jan 16, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2013

    duervo macrumors 68000

    duervo

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2011
    #21
    I'm no expert in video editing, but assuming you're using Adobe Premier Pro CS6, and after reading the release notes for that product, it appears that you're in need of a system with a better CPU, namely a quad-core CPU like that found in a 15" MacBook Pro (retina or otherwise.) This is supported by your CPU being almost pinned at 100% while importing that video of yours.

    You might be able to get some relief by choosing a different codec, but I'm not sure if that's a possibility for you ... it depends on what process and equipment you're using to create your Xbox 360 video. If you're stuck having to convert to a different format prior to importing it into Premier Pro, but after you create the video, then you're looking at increasing the time taken to work with any of your videos, and that can be painful if you're dealing with long videos.

    Adobe Premier Pro CS6 apparently is also able to take advantage of the GPU's in dedicated graphics processors such as those from AMD or nVidia (again, found in the 15" MacBook Pro.) If this is true, then that's one more thing that the 15" MacBook Pro can possibly help with here, over the MacBook Air (and 13" MacBook Pro.) However, I'm not sure if the Media Browser or importing process uses the GPU for its work. Maybe somebody with more knowledge on the low-level workings of Premier Pro can chime in here.

    If you have easy access to a local Apple Store, what I would do is bring one of your videos there on a USB key or external drive, and ask them if you can test importing it on one of the 15" MacBook Pro's there in the store ... preferably one with 8GB RAM (you may have to install the trial version of Adobe Premier Pro CS6 on one the display systems.) Then, I'd try the import there and see if you get the same thing happening.

    How do your taxes work in Italy? If the systems are more expensive there, maybe you can claim part of the cost as depreciation on your taxes over the next 3 years?
     
  22. Ultra AleM thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Ultra AleM

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2012
    Location:
    Italy
    #22
    Hi, thanks for your help. I love my Air but I think I will sell it.
    I still do not know if I'll get a MacBook Pro 15 or a less expensive Windows Notebook.

    Here in Italy is a very bad crisis period. I think you all know the situation. Prices just grow a lot in 3-4 years. An iPhone 5 16 GB costs 729€, which are more and less 1.000$.
     

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