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Premiere Pro CC 2018 GPU Performance: NVIDIA Titan V 12GB

Written on February 7, 2018 by Matt Bach
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Introduction

The NVIDIA Titan V 12GB is the latest in NVIDIA's Titan line of GPUs and while the $3,000 price tag is pretty steep, it has a number of features that makes it very unique. The two most interesting being full-speed FP64 (double precision) performance and the addition of 640 "Tensor" cores. These special cores are designed specifically for use in machine learning, but both they and the FP64 performance unfortunately has no bearing on performance in software like Premiere Pro.

This doesn't make the Titan V a complete dud for Premiere Pro, however. This card also features HBM2 memory (which is faster than the GDDR5/GDDR5X VRAM found on most cards) and has more CUDA cores than any other recent GTX or Titan GPU. In fact, it has 5120 CUDA Cores while the Titan Xp and GTX 1080 Ti only have 3840 and 3584 CUDA cores respectively. One thing to note is that while the higher number of cores gives the Titan V a theoretical higher performance ceiling than any other GTX or Titan video card, each individual core in the Titan V is actually slower than the cores in cards like the GTX 1080 Ti or Titan Xp. So just like how a CPU with more cores is not always better, there is a chance that the lower frequency of the Titan V holds it back from being a top pick for software like Premiere Pro.

To find out, we will be looking at how this card performs in a number of realistic situations using our newly revamped Premiere Pro testing process. This new process is not vastly different than our old testing, but simply focuses on a wider range of codecs and has more in-depth Live Playback testing. More information can be found in the Test Hardware & Methodology section.

Test Hardware & Methodology

To see how the new Titan V performs in Premiere Pro, we opted to pair a number of different GPUs with the Intel Core i9 7940X CPU which is currently the fastest all-around CPU for Premiere Pro. Our full test platform consists of the following hardware:

Skylake-X (X299) Test Platform
Motherboard: Gigabyte X299 AORUS Gaming 7
(rev 1.0)
CPU:

Intel Core i9 7940X 3.1GHz
(4.3/4.4GHz Turbo) 14 Core

RAM: 8x DDR4-2666 16GB
(128GB Total)
Hard Drive: Samsung 960 Pro 1TB M.2 PCI-E x4 NVMe SSD
OS: Windows 10 Pro 64-bit
Software: Premiere Pro CC 2018

To act as comparison points, we will be testing a number of NVIDIA GPUs ranging from the new Titan V all the way down to the GTX 1060.

For those that read our articles regularly, you will notice that our testing looks quite a bit different since we just recently completely re-vamped our entire testing process for Premiere Pro based on feedback from our customers and readers. The biggest change is that we are now testing a wider range of codecs using media that is either publicly available for download or transcoded from media that is publicly available. This was done so that anyone can repeat our testing in order to both verify our findings and to see how their current computer stacks up to the latest hardware available.

However, in order to keep our testing process from taking weeks or months to complete, we had to drop some of the variety of testing and instead focus on just two aspects of Premiere Pro: Exporting and Live Playback. This isn't to say that the other things we used to test (such as rendering previews and warp stabilize) were not useful, but we simply had to cut something out in order to make time for the wider range of codecs. In fact, we may need to cut a bit more in the future as a single benchmark loop currently takes more than 18 hours to complete.

The footage used in our testing is shown below with links to where you can download it yourself:

Codec Resolution FPS Camera Clip Name Source
H.264 3840x2160 59.94 fps Panasonic GH5 60p Snow Handheld The Angry Video Guy
Panasonic GH5 Sample Footage
ProRes 422 HQ 3840x2160 24 fps Ursa Mini 4K City Train Station Blackmagic Design
Production Camera 4K Update
ProRes 4444 3840x2160 59.94 fps Canon C200 Untitled00024199 4K Shooters
Canon C200 Raw Footage Workflow
CinemaDNG 4608x2592 24 fps Ursa Mini 4K Interior Office Blackmagic Design
[Direct Download]
ARRIRAW 6560x3100 23.976 fps ALEXA 65 A003C025
(Open Gate spherical)
ARRI
ALEXA Sample Footage
RED 3840x2160
(11:1)
23.976 fps EPIC DRAGON A016_C001_02073O_001 RED
Sample R3D Files
RED 4096x2304
(7:1)
29.97 fps RED ONE MYSTERIUM A004_C186_011278_001 RED
Sample R3D Files
RED 6144x3160
(12:1)
23.976 fps EPIC DRAGON A007_C115_07181B_001 RED
Sample R3D Files
RED 6144x3077
(7:1)
23.976 fps WEAPON 6K S005_L001_0220LI_001 RED
Sample R3D Files
RED 8192x4096
(12:1)
23.976 fps WEAPON 8K S35 S002_C074_02065Z_001 RED
Sample R3D Files
RED 8192x4320
(9:1)
25 fps WEAPON 8K S35 B001_C096_0902AP_001 RED
Sample R3D Files
RED 8192x4320
(7:1)
23.976 fps EPIC-W 8K S35 S002_C074_02065Z_001 RED
Sample R3D Files
DNxHR HQ
8-bit
3940x2160 29.97 fps Transcoded from RED A004_C186_011278_001
DNxHR HQ
8-bit
6144x3160 23.976 fps Transcoded from RED A007_C115_07181B_001
DNxHR HQ
8-bit
8192x4320 25 fps Transcoded from RED B001_C096_0902AP_001

While this is by no means every codec available, we do feel that this covers a much wider range than our previous testing. In the future we may cut down on the number of RED clips and replace then with something like XAVC-S or AVCHD but we really wanted to see how the different compression levels impact performance.

Our testing was done with three different timelines to simulate different types of workloads.

Basic
(Live Playback)

  • 4 Clips in series
  • No effects
  • No transitions

Lumetri Color Only
(Live Playback)

  • 4 Clips in series
  • Lumetri Color on all clips
  • No transitions

Heavy Effects
(Live Playback & Export)

  • 10 Clips stacked
  • Lumetri Color on all clips
  • Cross dissolve between all clips
  • Audio track
  • Includes:
    • Keyframed position, size, & crop
    • Gaussian Blur
    • Multicam sequence
    • 2x2 grid of clips
    • Text overlay

To be clear, these test sequences are not anything fancy and frankly don't end up with a very nice final product since they are simply copies of the same clip over and over. However, if you wish to replicate our testing we have all the project files and export presets available for download. You should be able to replicate any of our tests by downloading the clips from the original source, making 10 copies of each clip, and re-linking the media in the appropriate project file. Export time was simply recorded from when the "Export" button was clicked until the export completed. Live playback FPS (frames per second) was measured based the number of dropped frames relative to the total number of frames in the sequence. For example, if we dropped 100 frames in the 4K ProRes 422 HQ "Basic" timeline (which has 579 frames), that means we rendered a total of 479 frames over 24 seconds for an overall result of ~20 FPS. For ease of comparison, we also have the raw number of dropped frames listed in the Live Playback section.

Live Playback

Live playback performance is a challenge to accurately test since performance depends not only on the codec and resolution of your media, but also the playback resolution (full, half, quarter, etc.) and the effects you have applied. Since this is the first full round of testing with our new benchmark process, we decided to go all out and benchmark all our test media with not only three different timelines, but also at full, half, and quarter playback resolution. For more information on each test media and timeline, check out the Test Hardware & Methodology section.

Premiere Pro CC 2018 Live Playback Benchmark Titan V

Individual Avg. FPS Results

[+] Show Raw Dropped Frame Results

Due to the huge amount of data gathered in our testing (over 800 different data points in total!), we are not going to go through everything point by point. If we tested a codec you typically work with, we highly recommend looking at the "Individual Avg. FPS Results" charts or the raw Dropped Frame results by clicking on the "Show Raw Dropped Frames Results" link. However, for a general overview of how each GPU performed we decided to average the results relative to a GTX 1080 8GB video card.

With our new approach to playback testing, we are able to get some very interesting insights into how the video card affects live playback performance. First of all, we have to point out that both the Titan XP and the new Titan V are not great choices if live playback in Premiere Pro is a primary concern. With very few exceptions, the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti was as fast or faster than either of the Titan cards at a much lower cost. In fact, in some cases (4K ProRes 4444 and 6K RED 12:1 with the "Heavy Effects" sequence) the GTX 1080 Ti was not just a little bit better, but was able to play the sequence at 50% higher FPS compared to the Titan cards!

Another interesting discovery was that the lower the playback resolution, the less the GPU model impacts performance. Of course, at a certain point the GPU doesn't matter since you can't get any better than 0 dropped frames, but even when we were dropping a decent number of frames the difference between the GTX 1060 6GB and the GTX 1080 Ti at half or quarter resolution was often less than 1-2 FPS. This suggests that at lower playback resolutions, the GPU takes a back seat to the CPU in terms of importance. This is a very significant finding since with 6K and 8K footage you will likely be dropping to half or quarter playback resolution if you add a decent number of effects in order to maintain near real-time playback. If this is something you will be doing regularly, then you are likely better off with a slightly lower end GPU and spending the cost savings on a more powerful CPU if possible.

Exporting

Exporting is one of the biggest single time sinks for a Premiere Pro user and is often the go-to metric for measuring performance. For this test, we will be examining 4K, 6K, and 8K projects using all the different codecs listed in the Test Hardware & Methodology section. Added up, this works out to just over 40 different individual tests for each GPU resulting in just under 250 total data points.

Premiere Pro CC 2018 Export Benchmark Titan V

Individual Export Time Results

Due to the amount of data we collected during our testing, we once again decided to compile the results into a single overall average relative to the GTX 1080 8GB video card. If you are primarily concerned about just one of the codecs or resolutions we tested, we highly recommend checking out the individual results - just click on any of the thumbnails to view the full-sized chart.

With that said, from an overall perspective we saw a small but noticeable performance improvement as we used more and more powerful (and expensive) GPUs. However, keep in mind that this is just an overall average. In some cases - like when using ARRIRAW footage or when exporting 8K projects to 8K H.265 - all the GPUs performed roughly the same. Other times, we saw a huge improvement in export times such as when using DNxHR HQ 8-bit media where the export times were often cut in half going from a GTX 1060 6GB to a Titan V 12GB.

Conclusion

Premiere Pro CC 2018 GPU Performance

Looking at just Live Playback at full resolution with the "Heavy Effects" timeline and overall Exporting performance, we get a pretty good idea about how the Titan V stacks up against the other video cards. Frankly, it is a bit of a mixed bag - especially considering that the Titan V is more than 4x the cost of the GTX 1080 Ti.

If exporting is your primary bottleneck, then you might be able to justify the cost of the Titan V, but it is only ~6% faster than the Titan Xp or ~8.5% faster than the GTX 1080 Ti. In terms of real numbers, this means that going from a GTX 1080 Ti to a Titan V will save about 5 minutes on a 60 minute render. Most people would not consider this to be worth the roughly $2,300 increase in cost, but for those that do a lot of rendering with a dedicated render workstation or server it very well may.

Moving on to Live Playback, this is unfortunately where the Titan V (and Titan Xp) fall short. In pretty much every test that put a decent load on the GPU, the GTX 1080 Ti was faster than both the Titan Xp and Titan V. We do want to point out again that in our full testing we saw minimal differences between all GPUs at half and quarter playback resolutions, but if you are going for full res playback then the GTX 1080 Ti is clearly a better choice than either Titan card. The Titan V is not exceptionally bad by any stretch, but you can simply get better performance at a much lower cost with a GTX 1080 Ti card instead.

Tags: Premiere Pro, NVIDIA, Titan V, Titan XP, GTX 1080 Ti, GTX 1080, GTX 1070, GTX 1060
IFlyAnytime .

I'm sure I'm missing something. The Titan Z has 5760 Cuda Cores, so how are the 5120 cores in the Titan V the most Cuda Cores in a Titan GPU? No Z in your tests?

Posted on 2018-04-30 17:46:37

Honestly, we kind of forgot about the Titan Z. That card was weird since it was actually two GPU crammed onto a single PCB. So technically, each Titan Z GPU only has 2880 cores or that's my defense anyways. I added a bit of a caveat in the intro that the Titan V has more CUDA cores than any other "recent" GTX to Titan card though since you are correct that the Titan Z as a single card had more cores.

Posted on 2018-04-30 17:54:30
IFlyAnytime .

Thanks for the quick response Matt. I realized right after my post that you were likely taking into account it's actually two GPUs! For someone using the Redshift renderer, are there any advantages to so many of those cores crammed in there? The redshift community seems to only be concerned with cores, and Titan Zs can be had quite affordably nowadays with the masses buying up 1080 Tis.

Posted on 2018-04-30 18:05:04
IFlyAnytime .

Ok, just got off of Redshift's site. It looks like nothing but trouble making Titan Zs work properly.

Posted on 2018-04-30 18:28:48

Yea, I would agree with that even though I've never tried to use it in Redshift myself. The Titan Z is also pretty old at this point so even if you found one at a reasonable cost you are likely going to be better off with a similarly priced modern GPU.

Posted on 2018-04-30 18:55:04
Craig Moore

With a $400 price difference in the 1080 vs 1080 ti and 10% performance boost, do you see other value in the 1080 ti?

Posted on 2018-05-04 18:48:17

I think it really depends. $400 for 10% is really pretty decent in terms of price/performance since as you get into higher-end hardware you get less and less of a benefit per dollar. On a $4000 workstation that is a 10% price bump for a 10% performance bump.

I think the biggest gain comes from live playback. Depending on the type of footage you work with and the kind of effects you use, in some cases a 1080 ti is going to let you play through your timeline without dropping frames like a 1080 might. If that is the case, I think the $400 is well worth it.

Posted on 2018-05-05 16:53:25
Craig Moore

Thanks for the insight. Good logic. I’m coming from a old Mac Pro so the investment is probably worth it

Posted on 2018-05-05 17:24:03

You might want to check out our (slightly old) Mac Pro vs PC article: https://www.pugetsystems.co.... Obviously a currently Gen PC will be even faster due to the newer hardware available, but that might give you a general idea.

Just as a heads up, I am working on an update to that article right now if you want to hold off for a week or two to get the absolutely most up to date comparison.

Posted on 2018-05-05 18:12:14
Craig Moore

thanks! I've read that article at least ten times while researching :).

Posted on 2018-05-06 23:46:45
Phileas Schönberg

What do you think about the GTX 1050 and AMD RX 560 - 580 for Premiere?

Posted on 2018-06-06 11:45:16

As long as you are working with fairly light-weight codecs like H264 or ProRes 422 and don't use footage above ~24-30 FPS a GTX 1050 should be right on the edge of being able to give you live playback. 4K might be pushing it due to the 2GB of VRAM, but for 1080p it probably should be OK as long as you aren't using too many GPU-intensive effects.

As far as the GTX 1050 versus a AMD RX 560/580, I would go the NVIDIA route. Adobe appears to invest way more in the CUDA architecture that NVIDIA cards use, so in our experience you will get better performance and Premiere Pro will be more stable using an NVIDIA-based GPU. The issue with the GTX 1050 is that it only has 2GB of VRAM, so if you are planning on working with 4K footage I would really recommend saving up a bit to get the GTX 1050 Ti with 4GB of VRAM.

Posted on 2018-06-06 17:22:29
Phileas Schönberg

Thank you for your helpful reply and tests! :)

Posted on 2018-06-07 03:07:52
maratropa

thanks Puget, like always! Now premiere has H264 hardware encoding, it would be nice to see how that influences cpu-gpu combinations. Plans to do anything with that, benchmarkwise?

Posted on 2018-07-20 10:38:54

The problem with hardware encoding for H.264 is that it really isn't an apples to apples comparison to using software only since the quality difference is large enough that in many ways they really should be considered two different codecs. We actually just happened to put up a short video talking about this last week: https://www.youtube.com/wat... . Something else that really muddies up the topic is that in order to have hardware acceleration enabled, you need a CPU that will support it and unfortunately the best CPUs for things like live playback don't have that support.

Posted on 2018-07-23 16:11:22