I decided to take a video of the Mac Pro’s amazing performance with native Red R3D 4K files. Watch five streams, with composite modes, scale, rotation and more play without rendering.
Final Cut Pro X with the new Mac Pro playing five simultaneous streams of RED RAW (.r3d) native off the internal SSD. The background layer is scaled to fill the 16:9 aspect ratio. The four overlays are scaled, rotated randomly and positioned randomly. They have different composite modes applied, and two have drop shadows. There are various short and long fades added. The aerial shot is a GoPro shot scaled up. The opening time lapse is a ProRes 4444 scaled. The interview shot has a Color Board correction applied. The slow motion footage was shot that way and is playing at normal speed.
Final Cut Pro X 10.1 was set to Best Performance (which I believe is an adaptive deBayer) and Background Rendering was off. You can see from the orange bars that this was not pre-rendered. I chose to shoot with my iPhone simply because I didn’t want to do a screen capture that might affect performance.
In times past as soon as you moved out of “normal” composite mode (a.k.a. blend mode) real time performance stopped. Rotate an image and real time performance stopped. Add a soft drop shadow: ditto. Put all those together at the same time and use a heavy-to-decode codec like Red R3D native at 4K really does shock me more than a little.
Benchmarks, schmenchmarks: this is the performance I care about. Bottom line: multiple stream native RED 4K editing without proxies is practical if you have the storage speed.
I assure you I have no intention of putting anything like that composite out in my name other than for testing purposes: it’s a rater ugly composite onto what was originally a very beautiful edit. It is demo material I have been loaned by Apple for the Digital Cinema Society event at Keycode back in December.
BTW, Final Cut Pro X 10.1 on my MacBook Pro Retina 2012 encoded the 37 second video in under five seconds.