How to make AME as good and fast as FFMpeg?

Explorer ,
Feb 24, 2020 Feb 24, 2020

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Hi,

I want to encode an image sequence (JPG, 1920x1080, 10.184 frames, 25fps) and an audio file (wav, 48kHz) to an H.264 AAC MP4. No edits, no effects, just encode. So I put it in a timeline in Premiere (2020, 14.0.1 Build 71) and send it to AME (14.0.1 Build 70) with the settings VBR, 1-pass, 6-8 Mbps, Maximum Render Quality on, AAC 48khZ 320 kbps, Renderer Mercury Playback Engine - GPU CUDA.

My System: AMD Ryzen 3900X, 64 GB RAM, RTX 2080Ti (Driver 442.19), Win 10 Pro (10.0.18363), image sequence is stored on PCIE4-SSD.

 

I also send the same to FFMpeg with appr. the same bitrate using 1 pass and the quality factor, which is not available in AME.

 

AME needs 14:52.

FFMpeg needs 3:22, that is 4.4 times faster!

Also the FFMpeg version looks better, with AME I get fractals in noisy areas, which is not the case with FFMpeg. Again, the resulting bitrate is about the same (AME 6200 kbps, FFMpeg 6400 kbps). I have also tried giving AME a little higher bitrate (7 Mbps), still fractals there.

 

So freeware beats giant Adobe by far! But why? Am I doing something wrong? I still would like to use AME, because it is just more practical together with Premiere and AE, but under these circumstances it is not usable.

 

Thanks,

Bob

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Export or render , Performance

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Feb 27, 2020 Feb 27, 2020

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Why are you turning on Maximum Render Quality?

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Explorer ,
Feb 27, 2020 Feb 27, 2020

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It was an attempt to get rid of the fractals, because, well, it says maximum quality... but I guess it has nothing to do with it and is more about scaling. I have tried it without as well, and now also with the new versions 14.0.3 (both Premiere and AME): It makes no difference, neither to render time nor quality.

Also I tried the very-slow-option of FFMpeg, then it doubles the render time (which is still twice as fast as AME), but it manages to get the same better quality into a bitrate of 5400 kbps.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Feb 27, 2020 Feb 27, 2020

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AfterCodecs uses FFMPEG in AE/PPRO/AME and is supposedly a lot faster so you could try that. Note that any QuickTime formats with FFMPEG aren't genuine, they're reverse engineered, so you may run into problems with some hardware

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Explorer ,
Feb 27, 2020 Feb 27, 2020

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Thanks, I did not know that one. 89$ for each platform is a bit pricey though. But I will certainly give the trial version a shot.

And one could think, that almighty Adobe should be able to encode videos without plugins. Jeez, they never fail to surprise me... probably not the way they would like to... 🙂

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Explorer ,
Apr 01, 2020 Apr 01, 2020

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In the meantime I have tried AfterCodecs. It is a nice plugin and has a much better quality/bitrate ratio than Adobe. The speed is unfortunately the same as AME, regardless of the speed settings of the encoder. I have contacted the developer and he says that this is a problem with the slow decoders of AME serving the frames to AfterCodecs. I am not counting on Adobe doing anything about that, so, is there still something else out there that somebody knows of?

 

Thanks,

Bob

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Apr 01, 2020 Apr 01, 2020

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Plugins can rarely make the host app run faster, that's not really how it works. I've seen tests that AfterCodecs has a faster encoder for H.264 and some other formats than the default ones, but if you're just encoding jpg sequences and are looking for faster speed, then try some other encoders like Handbrake, or use FFMPEG Command Line or something like that.

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Explorer ,
Apr 01, 2020 Apr 01, 2020

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Yes, I am afraid, there is not much to do about it until Adobe listens to all the already existing requests about a slow media encoder. Handbrake is not an option, they do not import image sequences and do not want to change that (I have already asked them a while ago). I would rather not create a temporary lossless video file for that. FFMPEG is fine with just image sequences, it is just more convenient to use the tools in use (AE, Premiere) also for encoding, especially if there is something more than just encoding a sequence. So I will probably end up using at least the better quality of AfterCodecs and hope for the best in the future.

It is just a little annoying that the software I am paying for every month is so astonishingly far behind freeware...

Anyways, thanks for the reply!

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