In the March 2021 Adobe update, After Effects received a brand new feature called multi-frame rendering. In this video we’re going to cover what this means and why the update is a big deal.
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Multi-frame rendering, in Adobe’s own words, was the most requested feature to add in to After Effects. Essentially it allows the After Effects renderer to utilize multiple cores of your CPU. There was a lot of performance being left on the table before. After all, if you’re serious about After Effects you probably have at least an 8-core processor. So it really was a waste to not be able to use multi-core rendering.
At the start, this update brought multi-core rendering for exporting, which is a great help that will speed up renders. But as time goes on, they will also be adding multi-core support for previews, dynamic link, and motion graphics templates.
The new render queue shows three separate progress bars. One is exported frames in blue, as you’re used to. Dark green is frames ready to be exported. Then light green is frames currently rendering. This gives you a better idea of what’s happening in your render queue as it’s happening.
So how much faster will your renders be now? A lower-end system with a 4 to 6 core CPU with 16 gigabytes of RAM will render 1.2 to 1.4 times faster. A mid-range system with 8 to 10 cores and 16 to 32 gigabytes of RAM will result in render times that are 1.6 to 1.75 times faster. And a high-end system with 16 to 64 cores along with 48 to 128 gigabytes of RAM will see render times that are 2 to 3 times faster! So obviously these improvements are going to make the most difference for a high-end computer. Either way though, this is going to save you a ton of time.
Here’s my computer rendering the multi-frame rendering test project without multi-frame rendering and with multi-frame rendering (see above)
In the normal version of After Effects, it took 14 minutes and 47 seconds. But it only took 9 minutes and 19 seconds using multi-frame rendering. This ended up being an increase of about 1.6 times, which seems in line with Adobe’s estimates, since I’m running a higher-end 6 core processor with 32 gigabytes of RAM.
All of this is available in the Beta version of After Effects, so if you want to try it out and see how fast your renders are now, you can give it a shot yourself.