Technology content trusted in North America and globally since 1999
8,418 Reviews & Articles | 64,443 News Posts

NVIDIA beats AMD with real-time 8K video editing

NVIDIA has real-time 8K video editing handled by a single Quadro P6000 graphics card

By Anthony Garreffa from Aug 6, 2017 @ 21:16 CDT

Update: I've talked to AMD about this article since it went live, and I've been informed that something isn't right here - and that the new Radeon Pro SSG will wipe the floor with NVIDIA's Quadro P6000 graphics card. AMD has promised to send me a Radeon Pro SSG when it launches to do my own in-house testing against the P6000 with real-time 8K video editing, something that is meant to be only capable on Radeon Pro SSG.

AMD debuted their upcoming Radeon Pro SSG during Capsaicin just before SIGGRAPH 2017 kicked off, with their next-gen Vega GPU architecture featuring a 2TB NVMe drive soldered to the graphics card as 2TB of massively-fast cache. Perfect, and reportedly needed for real-time 8K video editing from RED Cinema cameras... until we visited NVIDIA a couple of days later.


NVIDIA were showing off their Quadro P6000 graphics card, which has been available for months and months now, editing 8K footage from a RED camera - all in real-time, without 2TB of cache.


There were some big differences between the systems and what parts of the PC were being used, depending on the card doing the 8K scrubbing and editing. AMD's new Radeon Pro SSG was pushing nearly 5GB/sec from the SSDs on the Radeon Pro SSG, while the CPU usage was just 14% and the RAM usage only 24%. NVIDIA's system didn't need a 2TB SSD drive to reach 8K real-time editing, but the CPU and RAM usage numbers were much higher. I didn't snap a photo of this, but I remember the CPU usage getting closer to 30% while the RAM consumption ramped up to 50%.


Still, you're not going to build a Quadro P6000-based video editing system for 8K without going for a 16C/32T (or much higher) processor and 64GB+ of RAM. All in all, NVIDIA was able to edit 8K video in real-time without the need of a dedicated, super-fast NVMe-based SSD on the graphics card... with a card that's available RIGHT NOW, versus AMD's availability of Radeon Pro SSG sliding into sometime in Q4 2017... months away from now.


AMD's demo of the Radeon Pro SSG was stuttering in front of our eyes, with the AMD representative saying that the Radeon Pro SSG was an early prototype board - understandable. But then he added that the 2TB SSD needs to have its cache cleared "every hour or so" as it "fills up". Hmm, OK - weird... why not just clear it and show us 8K editing in real-time, as the sign next to AMD's system said.

Then on top of that, AMD said that the drivers weren't polished yet, another reason for the stuttering and no real-time 8K video playback at 24FPS. AMD's demo was dropping into the 14-15FPS mark, and given those excuses... NVIDIA's graphics prowess is a testament to their hardware handling next-gen 8K video editing.

NVIDIA's current-gen Quadro P6000 is available right here, right now, and handles 8K video editing and playback in real-time.

Related Tags