Adobe Creative Suite 4 Production Premium 64-bit - Accelerate your HD workflows with 64-bit optimization

Adobe CS4 Production PremiumAdobe Creative Suite 4 Production Premium
64-bit Optimization

Accelerate your HD workflows with 64-bit optimization

Today’s video production workflows benefit tremendously from applications that are architected and optimized for 64-bit operating systems. You can experience 50% to 200% faster high-definition (HD) workflows moving from 32-bit with 4GB of RAM to 64-bit with 16GB of RAM. Performance gains include increased editing speed, rapid switching among tools, and faster rendering—all of which give you more time to be creative with CS4 Production Premium. Jan Ozer of Digital Content Producer and EventDV tested CS4 Production Premium on 32-bit and 64-bit systems and concluded that "rendering trials clearly demonstrated that a 64-bit system delivered superior performance with most formats... the 64-bit system was 67% faster on my standard DV test file, up to 63% faster on HDV-related tests, up to 50% faster on AVCHD tests, and up to 227% faster on tests using footage from the RED camera."

64-bit support in Creative Suite 4:
All Adobe Creative Suite 4 software components are tested on 64-bit operating systems (OS). In addition:

  • Adobe Photoshop CS4 Extended software offers native 64-bit support for Microsoft® Windows Vista®. Native 64-bit support for Mac OS is planned in a future release.
  • Adobe After Effects CS4 software is architected and optimized for 64-bit operating systems.
  • Adobe Premiere Pro CS4 software is architected and optimized for 64-bit operating systems.
  • Photoshop Lightroom 2 software supports 64-bit processing, utilizing the advanced memory handling capabilities on the latest Mac OS and Windows systems.

Why 64-bit operating systems matter in video production
Digital video production’s demand for computing power—necessitated by increasingly high resolutions and the expectation of real-time responsiveness—is making 64-bit operating systems a core component of today’s editing workflow. The number of processing cores per CPU continues to increase, as does the amount of RAM (32GB or more in some cases) that each CPU can access.

Click here for the Videoguys DIY7: Intel Core i7 with Vista 64Videoguys DIY7 Intel Core i7 with Vista 64

Video production is inherently multidisciplinary, and shrinking budgets and increasingly powerful software mean production specialists in every area are stretching beyond their core strengths to handle other aspects of a production. Because 64-bit systems make it possible to run many applications simultaneously while maintaining real-time playback, such systems can speed up the production process considerably by providing instant access to a broad array of creative options. For hands-on users, the benefits are tangible—they can maintain momentum from creating to refining productions, which translates into a more enjoyable working process and higher quality results.

A number of key trends in video technology and video production will make 64-bit operating systems even more important moving forward:

  • As the native resolution of cameras continues to increase, so do the bandwidth requirements—multiple layers or multiple streams of video increase demands at a higher rate. Only a 64-bit operating system can keep up with these demands.
  • As color depth requirements increase, data rates increase dramatically. For example, a 4:4:4 12-bit file requires three times the bandwidth of a 4:2:0 8-bit file of the same resolution.
  • As producers become more cost conscious, 64-bit systems can allow producers to shave time from schedules by handling more tasks in parallel.
  • As standards rapidly evolve, content creators must work at high resolutions throughout production to meet the quality requirements for distribution. HD is increasingly common, even for web-based video distribution. Popular video websites now offer HD content.

Vista 64Advantages of 64-bit operating systems with CS4 Production Premium
When you use Adobe Creative Suite 4 Production Premium on a 64-bit OS, you can expect to see tangible benefits right away:

  • Faster editing performance in Adobe Premiere Pro, especially when working with high-resolution files.
  • Better multi-core rendering and longer RAM previews in After Effects.
  • The ability to run multiple CS4 Production Premium components simultaneously and leverage new integration like Dynamic Link to move content between them.
  • Faster performance in native 64-bit Photoshop (on Windows Vista), especially when working with extremely large PSD files.
  • Projects further in resolution and complexity, because of the additional available memory.
  • Background processes running more efficiently.

Click here for the Videoguys' Vista 64 Tips and Tweaks article with step-by-step instructions for Vista 64 tweaks and more!

Adobe Premiere Pro CS4 and After Effects CS4 have been rearchitected for 64-bit operating systems to use large memory more effectively (up to 20GB of memory for Adobe Premiere Pro alone, and up to 64GB of memory for a large Production Premium workflow).

Photoshop CS4 Extended is native 64-bit on Windows Vista today. In early testing of 64-bit Windows Vista support in Photoshop, Adobe has observed overall performance gains in the range of 8%-12%. Those who work with extremely large files may realize noticeably larger gains in performance, in some cases as dramatic as ten times the previous speed. This gain is because 64-bit applications can address larger amounts of memory, resulting in less file-swapping—one of the biggest factors that can affect data processing speed.

Consider a typical workflow in CS4 Production Premium, where at any given time you might be performing several of these tasks in parallel:

  • Compositing in After Effects.
  • Editing HD content in Adobe Premiere Pro.
  • Using compositions created with After Effects in Adobe Premiere Pro timeline via Dynamic Link.
  • Encoding a sequence from Adobe Premiere Pro in the background with Adobe Media Encoder.
  • Burning a Blu-ray disc in Encore using content imported via Dynamic Link from Adobe Premiere Pro.

These five concurrent activities initiate approximately ten processes, each of which can use a separate 4GB chunk of memory. Thanks to 64-bit optimization, CS4 Production Premium helps you spend less time switching between applications and waiting for memory to page back in from disk. With more memory available for frame caching, played content is available in the cache longer, and it gets swapped out for more recently played frames. This translates into better editing interactivity, particularly for detail work on high-resolution content or when editing complex projects.

Adobe’s plans for further 64-bit optimization
Adobe has consistently focused on architecting and optimizing for leading-edge systems, using Moore’s law to predict trends in users’ system capacity.

Higher end
% of amount of RAM in systems:
80% of editing
20% of editing
2004 SD HD 1GB 6GB
2008 HD 2K, 4k, RAW 2GB 16GB
Future 4K 8K and more, stereo, higher bit depth 8GB 64GB

Adobe Premiere Pro CS4 and After Effects CS4 are architected and optimized for the range of 2GB to 16GB of memory—supporting Production Premium workflows that show strong performance benefits at 16GB of memory or more.

In the labs, Adobe continues to work on versions of CS4 Production Premium that are architected and optimized for higher CPU and core counts with more memory—opening the door for even more demanding workflows.

When buying new hardware, consider a 64-bit system to ensure that you have headroom in RAM to leverage the power and scalability of CS4 Production Premium. Additionally, most tower systems available since 2006 and most laptops available since 2007 are 64-bit capable, so you may be able to experience the 64-bit performance boost today simply by upgrading your operating system and adding more RAM.


What are the recommended system configurations for video production?
For high-end workflows, more memory benefits performance significantly, making a 64-bit operating system essential. From our experience, these guidelines will help you, although your mileage will vary:

Premiere Pro
After Effects Production Premium
Solid baseline workflow 4GB 4GB 4GB
8GB 8GB 16GB
Memory rarely an issue 16GB 16GB 32GB

What does this mean for you?
Most laptops take only 4GB of memory. That will allow for a basic video workflow, but if you can add more memory, you’re likely to experience performance gains.

What’s the difference between 32-bit and 64-bit operating systems?
The basic difference between a 32-bit operating systems and a 64-bit operating systems is that because the address system and data path are wider on a 64-bit system, the system can move data around in larger chunks and provide access to essentially unlimited memory, whereas a 32-bit system is limited to 4GB (and in practice this number is actually smaller).

What do I need to do to upgrade to 64-bit on a Mac?
Mac OS Leopard is already 64-bit capable and ready to use additional memory. All you need to do is upgrade the memory to start seeing the benefits.

What do I need to do to upgrade to 64-bit on Windows?
When you install 64-bit Windows Vista, make sure your hardware drivers are available for the 64-bit edition. Specific Windows Vista 64-bit drivers are necessary to run the hardware -- 32-bit drivers do not work. In addition, you must have Service Pack 1 installed on Windows Vista to run CS4.

When running CS4 on 64-bit Windows Vista—here are some tips to maximize performance:

  • For Adobe Premiere Pro, use version 4.0.1. This free update contains changes that allow Adobe Premiere Pro to use more than 4GB of RAM in the system by making multiple instances of itself each time 4GB has been used.
  • For After Effects, be sure you have the 9.0.1 update, and adjust the amount of memory per core for the Memory & Multiprocessing option under Preferences. After Effects will also instance itself, but it does this per CPU core, and each core can use 4GB.

Will the rest of Adobe Creative Suite be 64-bit native on Mac OS and Windows?
Although 64-bit support across all the Creative Suite products is not yet available, Adobe continues to prioritize 64-bit support based on the potential user benefits and the complexity of the code transition.

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