How to optimize AE for better and faster results ?


Ok guys here is my spec :

Inter Core i7-2600 CPU @ 3.40Ghz
NVIDIA GeForce GT 440

So my question is how to optimize After Effects to get faster render. I’m talking about that part with multiprocesing turned on and for the OpenGL. I google everywhere and realy can’t conclude my self what to do. So is there any one ( felt i somehow know that you know :slight_smile: ) who can tell me what settings to use and can I render with the OpenGL turned on ? Does my graphic card supprot openGL ?


multiprocessing is simple. you get a number of cores and then each one gets a slice of the available memory.

in theory you have 4 cores and 16Gb, each core gets 4 Gb to work with

but you need to reserve some memory for the system and other applications so for example you cut out 4Gb and you have 12Gb remaining and 4 cores. So each core gets 3Gb

But what if you want to reserve a core for the system?

then 3 cores with 4Gb each for after effects and one core and 4 Gb for the system.

OpenGl works, off course, on your video card but is not used for rendering, is used for preview when working inside after effects. Currently I turned it off because it crashes After Effects. Maybe is a plugin or After Effects or my graphic card. who knows.

edit: opengl CAN be used for rendering but NOT at the same time with Multiprocessing turned ON.


There are basic guidelines at adobe’s website. From that point on - it is tweaking and testing it for current configuration. Furthermore, each project behaves differently so you cannot expect “preset”-like settings. Additionally - various effects may cause multiprocessing to switch off automatically than making your render time different that the expected. Again - all those are listed at adobe’s forum. I have similar configuration to yours - basically it is recommended to leave 1/4 of your RAM for other applications… same goes for you 16 cores. Rest is more or less irrelevant. I am sure someone more experienced will give you better explanation.



from that adobe link I posted earlier:

“Important: Because not all features of a composition can be rendered with OpenGL—and because some features that can be rendered with OpenGL are rendered with different results—you may only want to use OpenGL rendering to accelerate previews and to provide faster rendering for non-final results.”

so practically what I was meaning when I said you can’t render with opengl


what idiot I am!

now I realize why OpenGl crashes After effects

you CAN’T have multiprocessing On and also OpenGl On. :expressionless:


Only use OpenGL for accelerating previews. There are certain things and effects that it cannot do and what OpenGL can do depends on your graphics card.

You should think in terms of optimizing your projects and your workflow, rather than optimizing your render settings. As Inlife rightly pointed out, the optimal render setting depends on your hardware set up and on the composition that you are rendering. For instance, transcoding an image sequence will render more slowly with MP, because it uses very little processor. Calculation-heavy effects require a lot of processor. Trial and error until you get a feel for it is best. Personally, I use single processor as a basis (many effects are multi-threaded to use multiple processors anyway, without launching multiple instances of AEs render core… and with less rendercore’s running, each processor can grab more memory). I like to look at what the processors are doing on my machine, then if they’re not fully maxed out, see if MP brings any advantages.

More important in many ways is how you structure and interim-render your project. Look into working with image sequences (targa’s read in particularly fast if you don’t mind being limited to 8 bit per channel). Look also at workflows that employ proxies and pre-renders.

Image sequences are the best, because you can re-render parts of sequences. Have a look at Sequence Destroyer and Immigration over at for more image sequence workflow ideas.

I think that one of the bottle necks for AE is possibly RAM-swapping (i.e. system level virtual memory). I notice that my system drive is often working away like mad when I render something - especially at the point where a render really slows down. I’m beginning to think that replacing my system drive with a fast SSD might bring huge benefits, but I haven’t tried it yet. I’ll report back.

By the way, make sure your disk cache is set to a fast disk too, that isn’t your system disk or the disk with your project on it. And allocate lots of space for disk cache.


I wonder if this product (Blackmagic Intensity Extreme) can help making more faster the render. Have anyone try it?

Doren said

I wonder if this product (Blackmagic Intensity Extreme) can help making more faster the render. Have anyone try it?

Blackmagic real time effects supported only in Avid Media Composer 6, Apple Final Cut Pro 7 and Adobe Premiere Pro. No kind of acceleration in After effects at all, it’s just a video input & output device.

Back on AE configuration & rendering optimization, I mostly don’t use MultiProccesing switch on. Multiple instances of AE needs A LOT of free Ram causing the whole system slowing down. Most of my renders gets faster with MP off!


try this -
Multiprocessing on and calculate ram per cpu usage. Render it out to targa sequence. And once rendered - renderout again to desired format.

If you are gonna use media encoder - then redner out in loss avi cause gtime loss with png or jpeg will render out slower. Then use that render in media encoder to render it out to desired formats.

It’s a shame that media encoder can render out image sequence to video, but then you can not paste audio with that sequence. It would be cool to have that option. Then workflow would be to render out image seq file in AE and export mixed audio from AE and just combine them in media encoder.

About rendering out to .png vs .tga try yourself and see the difference.


some others tips


See this page for resources about making After Effects work faster:

That page includes links to the items referred to by others on this thread, plus much more.