Bottleneck Question

General questions or discussion about HandBrake, Video and/or audio transcoding, trends etc.
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WrlsFanatic
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Bottleneck Question

Post by WrlsFanatic »

Description of problem or question:
I built a Handbrake box for a friend, and having never been limited by CPU, I clearly under-sized his. I put in a Ryzen 3 3200G, and that serves as his GPU as well. I was expecting it to - like my Handbrake box - rip a 2-hour movie in a little over an hour. It was taking 3.5 hours to rip a 2.5 hour movie, and the box was so bogged down that it couldn't serve Plex movies at the same time.

My question is, what will increase performance the most per dollar?
1) Up his CPU to a Ryzen 5 3600 (Zen 2, 6c/12t)
2) Add a discrete GPU and force GPU encoding

It looks like about the lowest I could spend on a graphics card with built-in hardware encoding (Radeon RX 550) is about $90, while I could get a Ryzen 5 3600 with a bare bones graphics card for about $220. I'm guessing the latter setup will perform better, but I'm curious if someone could confirm. This article says that GPU encoding will come at the expense of larger files and lower quality. That sounds crazy to me (I would think that Handbrake will apply the same encoding algorithm regardless of what processes it and no matter how long it takes), but again, if someone would confirm I would greatly appreciate it.
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s55
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Re: Bottleneck Question

Post by s55 »

This article says that GPU encoding will come at the expense of larger files and lower quality. That sounds crazy to me (I would think that Handbrake will apply the same encoding algorithm regardless of what processes it and no matter how long it takes), but again, if someone would confirm I would greatly appreciate it.
Nope. HandBrake uses the hardware ASICs on the GPUs, not the GPU's themsevles. The encoder is hard wired in hardware and as such can't be changed. These encoders are much more primitive compared to software encoders like x264. They are geared for speed, not best quality or filesize.
That said, with each new generation of card, the hardware does improve and implement more features to improve.


Either way, I'd generally recommend staying on the CPU myself and just getting a chip that fits the budget. An Ryzen 3600 will do a pretty nice job.
rollin_eng
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Re: Bottleneck Question

Post by rollin_eng »

mduell
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Re: Bottleneck Question

Post by mduell »

WrlsFanatic wrote: Sun May 31, 2020 4:45 pmThis article says that GPU encoding will come at the expense of larger files and lower quality. That sounds crazy to me (I would think that Handbrake will apply the same encoding algorithm regardless of what processes it and no matter how long it takes), but again, if someone would confirm I would greatly appreciate it.
The same video encoding algorithms used on CPUs don't scale well on thousands of high latency GPU shaders. nVidia tried it in the early days with CUDA encoding and it was a flop. So they've got some fixed function ASICs on the side of the GPU to help accelerate encoding, albeit with efficiency impacts.
Woodstock
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Re: Bottleneck Question

Post by Woodstock »

The use of the word "Force" in the article is not right, any way. You are enabling handbrake to use the hardware encoders that GPU boards may have on them.

It even specifies that the hardware encoder has to be there: "If your GPU has no hardware encoders, you cannot use HandBrake with the GPU."

Now, if you've got the hardware and the proper drivers, you can select the encoder for your encode. I recommend taking a section of a source with motion and detail, and encoding it with the hardware encoder and the software encoder, and see which one you're happier with. I did that when I got a QSV-capable machine. Loved the FPS rate. Hated the output.
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