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Old 28th April 2020, 15:18   #1  |  Link
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Does the age of the processor matter for encoding?

I currently have a system with 2 12 core 2.4GHZ Xeon x5680 3.33 GHz CPU's. I have been reading a lot these general comments that "the speed of the CPU is the most important for video encoding". One thing I find interesting is in the old days as they say, the newer the CPU the higher the speed. Now that's not always the case. So take my CPU. Newer models of the same Dell server system all come with e5-2600 lower speed CPU's maxing out at 2.4 GHz. Would those processors do video conversion faster than my older processor even though my overall speed is listed higher than a newer CPU in a similar system?



Last edited by jriker1; 28th April 2020 at 15:32.
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Old 28th April 2020, 18:21   #2  |  Link
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Found this. That Xeon is still pretty good. If you want to encode to HEVC it will probably mainly produce heat and encode times may seem to last forever.
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Old 28th April 2020, 20:33   #3  |  Link
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If with "speed" you are referring purely to the clock frequency, then newer CPU models may not necessarily be "faster" (or can even be "slower") than older ones.

But: You have to keep in mind that clock frequency certainly isn't everything! Just think about the Pentium 4 disaster. In general, newer CPU architectures tend to be more efficient than older ones, in terms of "performance per clock cycle" as well as in terms of "performance per watt". So, it is indeed possible that a newer CPU may outperform and older CPU model at the same or even at a somewhat lower clock frequency - while also consuming less power.

Another thing to consider: There currently is a trend to stuff more and more CPU cores into a single CPU package. Those CPU models with a very high number of cores tend to have a lower clock frequency, compared to CPU models (of the same generation) that have fewer cores, because there is a power budget limit! Which one is better/worse depends a lot on which kind of application you are running. As long as your application is able to actually use all the CPU cores, I'd say the more CPU cores the better - even if it means a somewhat lower clock frequency. But, most applications have a limit on how many CPU cores they can use! So, in some scenarios, a model with fewer CPU cores but higher clock frequency can be better.

After all, you probably shouldn't fixate too much on clock frequency (and neither one the sheer number of CPU cores), but instead look for some actual benchmarking results of the particular application that you are planing to run.
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Old 28th April 2020, 21:00   #4  |  Link
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Thanks. For reference I am currently using Adobe Premiere Pro 2019 and Media Encoder 2019.


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Old 28th April 2020, 21:05   #5  |  Link
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If you plan to encode anything recent like HEVC or AV1, you would really want a recent CPU with AVX2. That instruction set can offer a fairly significant boost.
Older encoders did not make quite as much use of it.
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Old 1st May 2020, 10:48   #6  |  Link
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just to give you an idea an ryzen 5 3600 maybe faster then 2x x5680 in multi threading applications when AVX 2 is used.
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Old 1st May 2020, 13:45   #7  |  Link
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If you're sticking entirely to Adobe, you'll probably get better results from a basic powerful GPU than 24 cores of any CPU; media encoder's been extensively optimized for GPU, not CPU.
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