RamDisk or PrimoCache for Photo Editing Rig?

FAQ, getting help, user experience about Primo Ramdisk
JANSHIM
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RamDisk or PrimoCache for Photo Editing Rig?

Post by JANSHIM »

Hello. I'm a professional photographer working with the following hardware:

ASUS Republic of Gamers Maximus V GENE, Intel Core i7-3770K @ 4.6GHz
16GB 1866-MHz RAM, nVidia GeForce 2GB GTX660 Graphics
SSD #1: Crucial m4 128GB, SSD #2: Crucial m4 256GB
Windows 7 64-bit Home Premium
Paging File: 1024MB on C: and 1024MB on D:

I recently installed PrimoCache (setting in screenshot attached) and saw my SSD performance numbers through the roof! While benchmark numbers are truly impressive and system appears generally snappier, I was wondering if perhaps I should be running Primo RamDisk instead for purpose of photo editing (machine not used for video rendering). I work with images out of Canon EOS 5D Mark III 22 megapixels, JPEGs average 5MB each editing using Corel PaintShop Pro X3 (32-bit) and X6 (64-bit). Photo editing is where I want things to speed up — executing a Photoshop Plugin is where things slow down (maybe the plugins aren't optimised for speed?).

I look forward to any help you can offer.
Attachments
PrimoCache Setting
PrimoCache Setting
2014-04-02_082758.jpg (120.58 KiB) Viewed 8315 times
SSD Benchmark with PrimoCache
SSD Benchmark with PrimoCache
as-ssd-bench M4-CT128 M4SSD1 1.4.2014 9-02-45 AM.png (42.74 KiB) Viewed 8315 times
CrypEd
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Re: RamDisk or PrimoCache for Photo Editing Rig?

Post by CrypEd »

PrimoCache is good.. not to mean anything else, but:

The problem with synthetically-benchmarking "reads" is that no matter this data is already compressed (not just all 0 or all 1) it RE-RUNS the benches (five times) with the same data .... then it shows the highest average (logarythmic) result. This does NOT REFLECT that your first read sucked wither way with cache! xD

EVen the "first synthetic read test" is maintained through writing the file to the disk before.... this is where PrimoCache "tricks" you believe the first read is accelerated... it's not... it came from write-cache xD

I suggest you setup a RAMDisk with enough size to fit the Corels-Caches or hole installation (symlink) + a working Folder that you move your temporal "raw"-pictures in. Save it on shutdown (or close). Even big size RAMDisk images gonna be read sequentially very fast from our SSD.

So when you connect your Cam, you additionally mount the RAM-Disk, then you copy over your Cam-Content to the working Folder and start Corel (you can do this by BATCH-script and replace simply replace your Corel-Shortcut with that one) When you are done with your work you simply export the final result to your regular disk (which is PrimoCached)

This way every Read and Write is maintained through RAM.
And this way you don't have to bother with long system-wide defer-write-timeouts, to advantage ram write-cache during your work.

Check out your own benchmarks of PrimoRAMDisk!
CrypEd
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Re: RamDisk or PrimoCache for Photo Editing Rig?

Post by CrypEd »

Image

Here is mine.

AS-SSD is not capable of benching the RAM-Disk so i put it only up to show you that overall speed depends on system-hardware-speed (RAM/Chipset/CPU).

See in my case how much more faster a direct-IO-RAMDisk is compared to L1-R/W-cache in raw permance-means.

Writing sequentially and in 512k blocks is 1,1Gb/s faster on RAM-Disk... rwading is ~700mb/s higher... all other values are significantly higher at least, too... :)

This still does not reflect that RAMDisk is faster by design when it comes down to availability of the data, because it's a full-device, not just a "cache"... that "may have a hit".

The problem with "synthetic" benchmarking peaks when trying to measure "caches"... the benchmarks fail because the measurements are of no practical use, when you constantly first access data from a disk in your real use case, and write to disk every hour or so... (in means of save/export.

I don't think that your Corel is limited by IO either way. Are you sure that CPU isn't the limiting factor while processing image-filters? Whats the CPU-usage during that. If it is high (>98%) using any IO-boost (consuming CPU-cycle) wouldn't be suitable at all xD

My advice is use a RAM-Disk if IO-throuput is a real problem, if not stick with cache ;)

BTW: DOnt forget to clear cache content after re-runs of synthetic benchmarks...otherwise you may ruin your "cache-load".
JANSHIM
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Re: RamDisk or PrimoCache for Photo Editing Rig?

Post by JANSHIM »

I was looking around the web and came across this tutorial for RamDisk installation. I followed it and set up 5GB of RamDisk with 4GB as PrimoCache. I have done exactly as suggested, point System Variables TEMP/TMP, Paging, Paintshop Pro Cache etc to RamDisk. So far everything's running smoothly, no hiccups, no freezes .. again, maybe my machine is already running very fast .. I can't say I feel it's any quicker during photo editing.
Stubi
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Re: RamDisk or PrimoCache for Photo Editing Rig?

Post by Stubi »

JANSHIM wrote: System Variables TEMP/TMP
With the temp folders you have to be careful. If the ramdisk contents is not saved at shutdown some installers might miss files they expect to find after a reboot if the installer requires one.
JANSHIM
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Re: RamDisk or PrimoCache for Photo Editing Rig?

Post by JANSHIM »

Noted.
InquiringMind
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Re: RamDisk or PrimoCache for Photo Editing Rig?

Post by InquiringMind »

JANSHIM wrote:...I can't say I feel it's any quicker during photo editing.
You'll only see major performance improvements with disk-intensive tasks. Since you mentioned a particular Photoshop plugin as being slow, that's more likely to be CPU-related (it may lack optimization as you note - in which case finding another way or program/plugin to achieve the effect you desire would be the logical step).

One thing to check is that you are copying the images from the camera onto one of your SSDs before doing any editing. As the read/write speeds on compact flash will be a fraction of those offered by SSDs, doing anything with data on the camera is likely to be a lot slower.
JANSHIM
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Re: RamDisk or PrimoCache for Photo Editing Rig?

Post by JANSHIM »

I have now uninstalled RamDisk and Primo Cache after two weeks of testing and not seeing real world performance benefits from the work I do on this computer. As much as I like how my SSD numbers hit the roof with PrimoCache, I can't say those numbers translate to tangible speed increases. I invested more time in learning to finetune the overclocked machine — it runs 4.67 GHz full time (with Speedstep disabled), overclocked RAM at 1886 MHz, BCLK of 100.8 ... comparing the 'instant' (less than 2 seconds) I get from processing a 2500x1667 pixel image versus the wait from a 5760x3840 pixel image, I'll need a future generation Intel 9GHz CPU (with liquid nitrogen cooling) with twice the current generation memory bandwidth to pull it off. A man can dream :)
JANSHIM
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Re: RamDisk or PrimoCache for Photo Editing Rig?

Post by JANSHIM »

I have now uninstalled RamDisk and Primo Cache after two weeks of testing and not seeing real world performance benefits from the work I do on this computer. As much as I like how my SSD numbers hit the roof with PrimoCache, I can't say those numbers translate to tangible speed increases. I invested more time in learning to finetune the overclocked machine — it runs 4.67 GHz full time (with Speedstep disabled), overclocked RAM at 1886 MHz, BCLK of 100.8 ... comparing the 'instant' (less than 2 seconds) I get from processing a 2500x1667 pixel image versus the wait from a 5760x3840 pixel image, I'll need a future generation Intel 9GHz CPU (with liquid nitrogen cooling) with twice the current generation memory bandwidth to pull it off. One can dream :)
InquiringMind
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Re: RamDisk or PrimoCache for Photo Editing Rig?

Post by InquiringMind »

JANSHIM wrote:...comparing the 'instant' (less than 2 seconds) I get from processing a 2500x1667 pixel image versus the wait from a 5760x3840 pixel image...
Given that 5760x3840 has 4 times the pixels, an 8-second or so processing time seems quite reasonable.

However most photo filters can benefit from massively parallel processing so looking for a GPGPU version (that uses the processor on your graphics card) of that filter would likely prove more beneficial that waiting on Intel's (current) leisurely upgrade path.

Finding another way to achieve the effect you want using a more efficient filter would be the second (albeit less-exciting) option. The neoprene protective clothing you'd have to wear to use liquid nitrogen safely would probably look out of place in Brunei. :)
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