Hi there,

Apologies if this is a duplicate, I tried to search but could not find the answer.

I am looking to get a desktop that will do 2 video edits at the same time and spit out two USB sticks with the finished videos as fast as possible.

I would be looking at SSD storage for the actual video rendering process for speed, and then separate HDD units for long term, redundant storage.

What video cards, processor, and RAM would be recommended for this?


nVidia or AMD?

Would it be beneficial to run two high end video cards in tandem? (Pun Intended)

Possible configurations would be

Dual Cards without either
Mick Hardy
I haven't seen any speed enhancements from using GPU acceleration with Sony Vegas. I have heard of it helping reduce rendering times but I haven't seen it working in the wild. There are many forum posts about Sony Vegas and GPU acceleration and the supported video cards so you'll need to do some research into it.

When rendering crashes occur, my first suggestion is to turn off GPU acceleration, especially when running multiple instances. Testing these systems where I've turned GPU acceleration off, have always given identical rendering times regardless of this setting. Latest video drivers usually but not always fixes the crashes.

My recommendation is to divert your dollars from fancy video cards into a faster multi core processor.

I've seen two brand new Notebooks recently taking 30+ minutes to render a video. Both had crappy AMD CPU's with a PassMark score of around 2,500.

Our Notebook is an Intel Core i7-4700MQ @ 2.40GHz with Haswell 4th generation architecture and produces a six minute Full HD USB with extracted photos in less than ten minutes. It has a PassMark score of 7,768. Aim for at least this score or higher. Running multiple instances will half the speed of each instance.

CPU benchmarks 

EDIT: Changed processor in our Notebook. I referenced a desktop CPU previously.
Mick Hardy
While rendering a typical Full HD Handcam video on my computer, Vegas was using about 75% CPU and 1GB of RAM.

20% CPU and 6GB of RAM from a total of 8GB were still available.
Mick Hardy
This forum post  may have some more information to help with your decisions.
Awesome, thanks for your quick response. :)

You must have missed pasting that link in your last post though
Mick Hardy
dopamine wrote:

You must have missed pasting that link in your last post though

The link is there but the forum formatting doesn't show it until you hover over it. It's on my list of things to fix.
Mick Hardy
I've recently configured a new development computer and processed a few customers using TandemVids.

Total processing time varies according to video length but a fairly standard tandem video takes about four minutes to produce. This is a USB video with extracted photos. Running multiple instances slows down the rendering but two videos are still produced in about six minutes. I don't think you're going to get much faster than this within an acceptable budget.

The computer is a Core i7-6700K CPU 4.0GHz over clocked to 4.6GHz with 16GB of RAM. The video card is an AMD Radeon HD7700 salvaged from my old computer. The working folder and local storage are configured to use an SSD drive.

Test environment:
GoPro source media: 1920 x 1080 @ 25FPS using a USB 3.0 card reader
Video output quality: 1280 x 720 @ 10MBs (Sony AVC rendering engine)
Extracted photos: 147 @ 1920 x 1080
Output: USB 3.0 flash drive
Total output video length: 6:37

Total time for video only with GPU Acceleration on (AMD HD7700):

Total time for video only with GPU Acceleration on (Intel HD Graphics 530):

Total time for video only with GPU Acceleration off:

Total time for video and photos with GPU Acceleration on (AMD HD7700):

Total time for video and photos with GPU Acceleration off:

Multiple Instances:
Two different USB 3.0 Card Readers but with the same customer and two USB 3.0 Flash drives.
Total time for video and photos with GPU Acceleration on (AMD HD7700):
Instance 01 - 5:06
Instance 02 - 5:16
Total time for both to complete using a stopwatch 5:16.
Just set up a desktop computer and I am very impressed with the speed at doing two videos at the same time. Do you know a way that I can assign a USB port a drive letter? I would really like it so that my two instances are always pointing to the correct USB stick and the correct video card. Not sure how to do this to keep it the same each time. Any help would be appreciated on this issue
Mick Hardy
There isn't a good way of guaranteeing drive letters in Windows. Disk Management lets you assign a drive letter but I find it forgets after time. There is a third party solution I played with a while ago but it had issues. No idea if it's evolved.

The best solution we've found is to stick to the exact same order when plugging devices in and double check the contents of the USB. We double check the customer's name in Windows Explorer after rendering and write their initials on the USB itself.

So, connect USB 1, connect camera 1, process, connect USB 2, connect camera 2, process. Follow this order every time and you should be OK. If there is no second video, the order is still maintained.

I can't find the software I played with many years ago but "USB Drive Letter Manager" (USBDLM) looks promising.