Best technical solution to speed up 1h+ timeline response ?

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Skiess

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Best technical solution to speed up 1h+ timeline response ?

PostTue Apr 13, 2021 9:53 pm

I have a project that spans many years by now and was actually started in Premiere..
I work on it from time to time between other small projects.
It's a documentary with 4k H264 footage spanning many years.
Regularly new footage is added in the form of 1 or more shots.
Almost all shots are graded simultaneously (partly because I really enjoy that process)

The timeline has now exceeded 1 hour and this slows down the response time to near-unworkable.
Disabling thumbnails doesn't really help.

The problem is that every time I Paste Insert, or change a clip length, Resolve freezes for a moment, 10 seconds seems to be the norm now. When I press play nothing happens, until the playback speeds up to 'catch up the lost time' and then resumes.

So there's optimized media and proxies.
Both will likely require a separate harddisk to save all new video data.
And since new footage is added regularly I'm not sure what that process will be like.
And I don't know if that will actually speed up Resolve's response in this case.

I'm considering getting an 8TB SSD (Samsung 870 QVO) to store all the video on instead, as it's stored on an internal 8GB HDD now (WD Red 128MB cache). But there's no guarantee this will actually speed up the timeline as it could be a problem within Resolve.

Another consideration is cutting up the scenes in several timelines "like the old days". But that would make it harder to move scenes around etc.

Long story short:

Does anybody know if this lag in response is related to HDD read/search times?
Especially since this doesn't happen with small projects.
Short projects of around 5-10 minutes work very responsive, no trouble there.

colorful-timeline.png
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Marc Wielage

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Re: Best technical solution to speed up 1h+ timeline respons

PostWed Apr 14, 2021 4:08 am

Even on the big Mac system we have (16 cores, 256GB of RAM, two 4TB SSDs, Radeon Pro Vega II Duo GPU, 16TB SSD source drive), we get some lag with complex timelines over an hour. I solve it by breaking the timelines in half at about 20-30 minutes. Episodic TV usually tops out at 45 minutes, and we can do that if it's not weighted down with a lot of NR and complex OFX plug-ins. If we do run into a lot of OFX, we just cache it and call it a day.

If I were you, I would transcode all the H.264 material to something easier to work with like DNxHR (same resolution) and use that as the master footage.
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Tero Ahlfors

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Re: Best technical solution to speed up 1h+ timeline respons

PostWed Apr 14, 2021 4:28 am

A more cost effective way to get more/faster space would be to get a good RAID enclosure and fill that up with hard drives.
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Uli Plank

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Re: Best technical solution to speed up 1h+ timeline respons

PostWed Apr 14, 2021 4:42 am

H.264 might still be another bottleneck. The throughput is not the problem for such formats, please consider Marc's advice.
Don't approach Resolve with your expectations from other NLEs! They are all different.
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Jason Conrad

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Re: Best technical solution to speed up 1h+ timeline respons

PostWed Apr 14, 2021 5:26 am

Skiess wrote:
So there's optimized media and proxies.
Both will likely require a separate harddisk to save all new video data.


Not necessarily. If you use 720p prores proxy, the file sizes can be quite small. If your drives are so full that you don’t have room for that, then it’s probably time for more space anyway.

Use black magic disk speed test to figure out which of your drives has the fastest read time, then put proxy media and cache files there (R17, proper proxies, not “timeline proxy mode” or optimized media).

If you’re considering RAIDs, be aware that there’s a difference between getting one for speed, and one for storage. For speed, you can get a small, 2 disk RAID, and set it to RAID0, which doubles its speed, but doubles its rate of failure. In that case, you’d only want to put cache/proxy/optimized media on it, because by definition, that stuff is a duplicate of the original, and you don’t have to worry about it disappearing when (not if) the drive fails.

Ideally, you have one small fast cache storage location, one secure, large location, and once all that starts to fill up, you have a plan for moving stuff into “cold storage,” whether that’s cloud-based backups, LTO, or whatever.

With long timelines which have thousands of edits, the database overhead can slow down the opening/saving process, although I don’t *think* it affects the responsiveness of inserting a clip to the timeline.

Still, it’s good to start new databases every once in a while. If your complex project is in a database with lots of other projects, you might consider transferring it to one by itself to cut down on any extra overhead those might impose. I’m not certain that’d help, but it might be one thing I’d try.

And take Mark’s advice. Break it up


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Uli Plank

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Re: Best technical solution to speed up 1h+ timeline respons

PostWed Apr 14, 2021 7:52 am

Just a minor correction:
RAID 0 quadruples the failure probability, as related to storage space, since failure of one drive will ruin the data on both.
Don't approach Resolve with your expectations from other NLEs! They are all different.
Resolve Studio 17.1.1 and Fusion Studio 17, macOS 10.15.7
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Skiess

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Re: Best technical solution to speed up 1h+ timeline respons

PostSun Apr 18, 2021 9:24 am

Thanks everybody for te helpful feedback and sorry I didn't respond sooner. :)

I think I will try breaking up the timeline as this seems to be the simplest solution at the moment and other solutions do not provide a guarantee that the lag will be gone.
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Andrew Kolakowski

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Re: Best technical solution to speed up 1h+ timeline respons

PostSun Apr 18, 2021 11:03 am

If problem is with length of the timeline itself then this has nothing to do with source media type/disk speed etc.
It’s purely down to the Resolve engine and some problem there. It can be related to thumbnails, waveform etc. Try to disable all not needed preview ‘animations’ etc. Many NLEs went through problem of very disproportional smoothness loss on longer/more complex timelines. Some deal better with it, some badly.
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Dermot Shane

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Re: Best technical solution to speed up 1h+ timeline respons

PostSun Apr 18, 2021 1:17 pm

- i run longish timelines all day long (currrent projects are rangeing from 93 min to 121 min), most of the source media i have is ArriRAW or R3D, most projects are DCi4k or UHD
- timeline length make zero diffrence in my workflow, a 30 sec TVC. and a 2hr feature both playback trouble free
- i have three machines, all are w10, dual xeon, 96+ gig ram, LSi raid controlers, SAS to 12x spinning disks
- none of my machines have any issues with playback, thumbnails turned on, performance mode off, no optmised media, not much has been cached
- end game seems to be playback issues are machine centric not software, no idea why Marc's new macpro can't playback, it has more horsepower than any of my machines (z840/820/620) on paper

i guess the best tech solution is to drop $15k+ on a HP workstation + $5k on a disk array, and while you are at it, drop $5k on a surface + $3k on external scopes + $2k on a LG C1 = $30k

and that's the low budget answer ;-)
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Andrew Kolakowski

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Re: Best technical solution to speed up 1h+ timeline respons

PostSun Apr 18, 2021 1:48 pm

Famous solution- buy everything 10x faster, bigger, etc.
What about- write your software properly :D

I don't think that current Resolve really has this issue, does it? Maybe issue with original post is related to some system problem- driver version etc.
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SwansongMedia

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Re: Best technical solution to speed up 1h+ timeline respons

PostSun Apr 18, 2021 9:19 pm

I recently finished a 90 minute project, a fun mixture of H264, XDCAM, Prores and others. Considerably less cut-dense than Skiess' project but with all footage on a USB2 (yes really) external disk. No lag issues at all.
So I would concur that length of timeline isn't necessarily a factor. I would hazard a guess at the number of cuts being the issue here - with long GOP formats like H264, there'll be a considerable overhead in assembling the end and start frames at each cut.
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Andrew Kolakowski

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Re: Best technical solution to speed up 1h+ timeline respons

PostSun Apr 18, 2021 10:22 pm

Cut itself means not much (it's not like Resolve is caching cut points in RAM for fast access), even with long GOP formats.
Jump to random place matters, but if it's smooth for 5min timeline, don't see a reason why would it not be for 2h (as decoding happens only when you put your cursor on the timeline).

I'm guessing it will be things like thumbnails, waveform, markers(?) etc.
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Skiess

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Re: Best technical solution to speed up 1h+ timeline respons

PostTue Apr 20, 2021 12:06 pm

I've now separated the timeline in 3 parts.
To keep my markers I duplicated the timeline 3x and ripple deleted parts.

Editing is much smoother now with almost no lag in most cases.
The only problem is that all thumbnails reload every time you switch timeline (we really need a thumbnail cache).

I think the problem is related to the amount of cuts and not the length.
Enabling/disabling thumbnails didn't seem to make a difference in performance on the full timeline.
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Andrew Kolakowski

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Re: Best technical solution to speed up 1h+ timeline respons

PostTue Apr 20, 2021 1:22 pm

Skiess wrote:I think the problem is related to the amount of cuts and not the length.
Enabling/disabling thumbnails didn't seem to make a difference in performance on the full timeline.

Strange...

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