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Re: Smartblend speed

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  • Ingemar Bergmark
    ... Here s a speed comparison with my system. I have a Pentium D950, 4GB RAM, and 320GB SATA HDD (2x160GB RAID-0) For fullscreen panoramas I render a 6000x3000
    Message 1 of 14 , Aug 1, 2006
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      --- In PanoToolsNG@yahoogroups.com, "LoveFilm" <lovefilm@...> wrote:
      >
      > Can any one recount their rendering experiences using Smartblend?
      >

      Here's a speed comparison with my system.
      I have a Pentium D950, 4GB RAM, and 320GB SATA HDD (2x160GB RAID-0)
      For fullscreen panoramas I render a 6000x3000 tiff with Smartblend or
      Enblend.
      Since I use a Nikkor 10.5mm with a Canon 20D, I take 8 photos (8.2Mpx)
      for a full sphere.
      Rendering these in Smartblend takes about 2 minutes.
      Rendering in Enblend takes about 3-4 minutes

      Regards,
      Ingemar Bergmark
      http://panoramas.bergmark.com
    • Hans-Dieter Teschner
      Hi, ... are these times for 8 or 16 bit images, does anyone know the relation for this difference? regards Hans-Dieter
      Message 2 of 14 , Aug 1, 2006
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        Hi,


        --- In PanoToolsNG@yahoogroups.com, "Ingemar Bergmark" <ingemar@...>
        wrote:

        > Since I use a Nikkor 10.5mm with a Canon 20D, I take 8 photos (8.2Mpx)
        > for a full sphere.
        > Rendering these in Smartblend takes about 2 minutes.
        > Rendering in Enblend takes about 3-4 minutes

        are these times for 8 or 16 bit images,

        does anyone know the relation for this difference?

        regards Hans-Dieter
      • Ingemar Bergmark
        ... (8.2Mpx) ... Sorry, I forgot to mention that I mostly use 8-bit images (for which the times above are for). I ve fiddled around with 16-bit images when
        Message 3 of 14 , Aug 1, 2006
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          --- In PanoToolsNG@yahoogroups.com, "Hans-Dieter Teschner" >
          > --- In PanoToolsNG@yahoogroups.com, "Ingemar Bergmark" <ingemar@>
          > wrote:
          >
          > > Since I use a Nikkor 10.5mm with a Canon 20D, I take 8 photos
          (8.2Mpx)
          > > for a full sphere.
          > > Rendering these in Smartblend takes about 2 minutes.
          > > Rendering in Enblend takes about 3-4 minutes
          >
          > are these times for 8 or 16 bit images,
          >
          > does anyone know the relation for this difference?
          >
          > regards Hans-Dieter
          >


          Sorry, I forgot to mention that I mostly use 8-bit images (for which
          the times above are for).

          I've fiddled around with 16-bit images when there is a high dynamic
          range, but I create two 8-bit images instead when necessary. I make
          one bright and one dark image with my raw converter and then use
          Photoshop and masks to combine the two.
          I know it may sound a little cumbersome, but somehow I find it easier
          to get the results I want...


          / Ingemar
        • Michael Asgian
          Your hardware resources are kind of to small for what you do. Push more RAM if you can, you may have an empty slot... it will help alot, and ram is cheap
          Message 4 of 14 , Aug 1, 2006
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            Your hardware resources are kind of to small for what you do. Push more RAM if you can, you may have an empty slot... it will help alot, and ram is cheap lately.

            My problem wih smartblend are crashes... crashes my render machine from time to time... that's kind of anoying. especially when I'm running batch renderings... Dident try the latest beta yet,

            Anyone also experiences crashes? any fix?

            Mike

            LoveFilm <lovefilm@...> wrote: Can any one recount their rendering experiences using Smartblend?

            It gives great results but the processing time on my PC is outrageous.
            Is this normal?

            31 image pano (three images in the sky intentionally left out)

            8777 x 3072

            Processing 12 images per row.

            Smartblend reports a 5 hour + processing time to render just the first
            12 images! And about 18hrs to render all of them at once.

            I'm on a Dell laptop - 1.6 mhz, 500mg ram. There is about 3.5 gig
            availbale on my boot drive.

            I know this is not an optimal system for this type of work. Does
            anyone know what kind of realistic speed improvements I might expect
            with a higher end configuration?

            Also - I think I saw some posts regarding this somewhere. Is there
            any equivalent to Samrtblend for the Mac?






            ---------------------------------
            Talk is cheap. Use Yahoo! Messenger to make PC-to-Phone calls. Great rates starting at 1¢/min.

            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          • Manfred Kröger
            I m not really sure more RAM will improve smartblend s speed. It seems to me that in order to process large images all the blending is done on the hdd. This
            Message 5 of 14 , Aug 1, 2006
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              I'm not really sure more RAM will improve smartblend's speed. It seems
              to me that in order to process large images all the blending is done on
              the hdd. This would explain why smartblend needed 14 GB on my drive
              while the processor's and the RAM's usage was very low.

              Manfred

              Michael Asgian wrote:
              >
              > Your hardware resources are kind of to small for what you do. Push
              > more RAM if you can, you may have an empty slot... it will help alot,
              > and ram is cheap lately.
              >
              > My problem wih smartblend are crashes... crashes my render machine
              > from time to time... that's kind of anoying. especially when I'm
              > running batch renderings... Dident try the latest beta yet,
              >
              > Anyone also experiences crashes? any fix?
              >
              > Mike
              >
              > LoveFilm <lovefilm@... <mailto:lovefilm%40yahoo.com>> wrote: Can
              > any one recount their rendering experiences using Smartblend?
              >
              > It gives great results but the processing time on my PC is outrageous.
              > Is this normal?
              >
              > 31 image pano (three images in the sky intentionally left out)
              >
              > 8777 x 3072
              >
              > Processing 12 images per row.
              >
              > Smartblend reports a 5 hour + processing time to render just the first
              > 12 images! And about 18hrs to render all of them at once.
              >
              > I'm on a Dell laptop - 1.6 mhz, 500mg ram. There is about 3.5 gig
              > availbale on my boot drive.
              >
              > I know this is not an optimal system for this type of work. Does
              > anyone know what kind of realistic speed improvements I might expect
              > with a higher end configuration?
              >
              > Also - I think I saw some posts regarding this somewhere. Is there
              > any equivalent to Samrtblend for the Mac?
              >
              >
              >
              >
              >
              >
              > ---------------------------------
              > Talk is cheap. Use Yahoo! Messenger to make PC-to-Phone calls. Great
              > rates starting at 1¢/min.
              >
              > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              >
              >
            • Dave 360texas.com
              I think PTgui and Blending occurs on the Harddrive. I noticed a 1/3rd decrease in stitching/blending time when in PTgui I assigned my 80gb external hard drive
              Message 6 of 14 , Aug 1, 2006
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                I think PTgui and Blending occurs on the Harddrive. I noticed a
                1/3rd decrease in stitching/blending time when in PTgui I assigned
                my 80gb external hard drive PTgui workspace.

                I also noticed that PTgui creates TMP work files on my external HD
                because I found 8 of them. I ask Joost if it was safe to remove
                them. He said yes, PTgui 5.8.4 creates them but does not remove
                them after closing the program.

                Dave

                --- In PanoToolsNG@yahoogroups.com, Manfred Kröger
                <Manfred_Kroeger@...> wrote:
                >
                > I'm not really sure more RAM will improve smartblend's speed. It
                seems
                > to me that in order to process large images all the blending is
                done on
                > the hdd. This would explain why smartblend needed 14 GB on my
                drive
                > while the processor's and the RAM's usage was very low.
                >
                > Manfred
                >
                > Michael Asgian wrote:
                > >
                > > Your hardware resources are kind of to small for what you do.
                Push
                > > more RAM if you can, you may have an empty slot... it will help
                alot,
                > > and ram is cheap lately.
                > >
                > > My problem wih smartblend are crashes... crashes my render
                machine
                > > from time to time... that's kind of anoying. especially when I'm
                > > running batch renderings... Dident try the latest beta yet,
                > >
                > > Anyone also experiences crashes? any fix?
                > >
                > > Mike
                > >
                > > LoveFilm <lovefilm@... <mailto:lovefilm%40yahoo.com>> wrote: Can
                > > any one recount their rendering experiences using Smartblend?
                > >
                > > It gives great results but the processing time on my PC is
                outrageous.
                > > Is this normal?
                > >
                > > 31 image pano (three images in the sky intentionally left out)
                > >
                > > 8777 x 3072
                > >
                > > Processing 12 images per row.
                > >
                > > Smartblend reports a 5 hour + processing time to render just the
                first
                > > 12 images! And about 18hrs to render all of them at once.
                > >
                > > I'm on a Dell laptop - 1.6 mhz, 500mg ram. There is about 3.5 gig
                > > availbale on my boot drive.
                > >
                > > I know this is not an optimal system for this type of work. Does
                > > anyone know what kind of realistic speed improvements I might
                expect
                > > with a higher end configuration?
                > >
                > > Also - I think I saw some posts regarding this somewhere. Is
                there
                > > any equivalent to Samrtblend for the Mac?
                > >
                > >
                > >
                > >
                > >
                > >
                > > ---------------------------------
                > > Talk is cheap. Use Yahoo! Messenger to make PC-to-Phone calls.
                Great
                > > rates starting at 1¢/min.
                > >
                > > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                > >
                > >
                >
              • Fulvio Senore
                I am still using version 1.1.7 and ram surely improves its performance. When I stitch a pano (15 Mpx images), memory usage goes up to about 1.5 GB for one or
                Message 7 of 14 , Aug 1, 2006
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                  I am still using version 1.1.7 and ram surely improves its performance.
                  When I stitch a pano (15 Mpx images), memory usage goes up to about 1.5
                  GB for one or more very short moments.
                  Now that I have 2GB of ram those are very short moments, when I had 1 GB
                  the program started swapping and those moments were eternal.

                  My opinion is that smartblend only uses the HD to read input images and
                  write the output image. Of course with large images this can take some
                  time. Then smartblend simply allocates memory from Windows when it needs
                  it: if there is not enough memory Windows will start swapping. Some time
                  ago, when I tried to modify enblend 1.x, I discovered that this is not
                  an efficient way to handle a low memory situation. Explicitly swapping
                  to temporary files from the application can be much faster. This is what
                  enblend did: I disabled it and performance dropped.

                  So having a lot of ram is very important for smartblend to run quickly:
                  I have found that it is much faster then enblend 2.x.

                  Fulvio Senore

                  Manfred Kröger ha scritto:
                  > I'm not really sure more RAM will improve smartblend's speed. It seems
                  > to me that in order to process large images all the blending is done on
                  > the hdd. This would explain why smartblend needed 14 GB on my drive
                  > while the processor's and the RAM's usage was very low.
                  >
                  > Manfred
                  >
                  > Michael Asgian wrote:
                  >
                  >> Your hardware resources are kind of to small for what you do. Push
                  >> more RAM if you can, you may have an empty slot... it will help alot,
                  >> and ram is cheap lately.
                  >>
                  >> My problem wih smartblend are crashes... crashes my render machine
                  >> from time to time... that's kind of anoying. especially when I'm
                  >> running batch renderings... Dident try the latest beta yet,
                  >>
                  >> Anyone also experiences crashes? any fix?
                  >>
                  >> Mike
                  >>
                  >> LoveFilm <lovefilm@... <mailto:lovefilm%40yahoo.com>> wrote: Can
                  >> any one recount their rendering experiences using Smartblend?
                  >>
                  >> It gives great results but the processing time on my PC is outrageous.
                  >> Is this normal?
                  >>
                  >> 31 image pano (three images in the sky intentionally left out)
                  >>
                  >> 8777 x 3072
                  >>
                  >> Processing 12 images per row.
                  >>
                  >> Smartblend reports a 5 hour + processing time to render just the first
                  >> 12 images! And about 18hrs to render all of them at once.
                  >>
                  >> I'm on a Dell laptop - 1.6 mhz, 500mg ram. There is about 3.5 gig
                  >> availbale on my boot drive.
                  >>
                  >> I know this is not an optimal system for this type of work. Does
                  >> anyone know what kind of realistic speed improvements I might expect
                  >> with a higher end configuration?
                  >>
                  >> Also - I think I saw some posts regarding this somewhere. Is there
                  >> any equivalent to Samrtblend for the Mac?
                  >>
                  >>
                  >>
                  >>
                  >>
                  >>
                  >> ---------------------------------
                  >> Talk is cheap. Use Yahoo! Messenger to make PC-to-Phone calls. Great
                  >> rates starting at 1¢/min.
                  >>
                  >> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                  >>
                  >>
                  >>
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  > --
                  >
                  > Yahoo! Groups Links
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                • LoveFilm
                  ... I Networked my PC and Mac, and assigned the Mac s hard drive as an additional temporary directory. Seemed to work well as I needed access to more HD
                  Message 8 of 14 , Aug 1, 2006
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                    --- In PanoToolsNG@yahoogroups.com, "Dave 360texas.com"
                    <texas360dave@...> wrote:
                    >
                    > I think PTgui and Blending occurs on the Harddrive. I noticed a
                    > 1/3rd decrease in stitching/blending time when in PTgui I assigned
                    > my 80gb external hard drive PTgui workspace.
                    >
                    > I also noticed that PTgui creates TMP work files on my external HD
                    > because I found 8 of them. I ask Joost if it was safe to remove
                    > them. He said yes, PTgui 5.8.4 creates them but does not remove
                    > them after closing the program.
                    >

                    I Networked my PC and Mac, and assigned the Mac's hard drive as an
                    additional temporary directory. Seemed to work well as I needed
                    access to more HD space. But would writing to the Mac's larger /
                    faster drive provide a speed benefit, especially since the rendering
                    was being done over the network?

                    I'll have to try that again.

                    Now - what about Enblend / Smartblend. Will they also use the
                    external drive (if set as the preferred directory in PTgui's
                    preferences) to write their temp files to. I know that on the Mac
                    (when using Xblend to pBlend to Enblend combo) that the files are
                    written to the boot directory (unless Enblend is started from the
                    command line, I think).
                  • Joost Nieuwenhuijse
                    ... Only the jpegs generated by the Preview button will be left on the drive; PTGui cannot delete them because the preview application may still be running.
                    Message 9 of 14 , Aug 1, 2006
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                      > --- In PanoToolsNG@yahoogroups.com, "Dave 360texas.com"
                      > <texas360dave@...> wrote:
                      >> I think PTgui and Blending occurs on the Harddrive. I noticed a
                      >> 1/3rd decrease in stitching/blending time when in PTgui I assigned
                      >> my 80gb external hard drive PTgui workspace.
                      >>
                      >> I also noticed that PTgui creates TMP work files on my external HD
                      >> because I found 8 of them. I ask Joost if it was safe to remove
                      >> them. He said yes, PTgui 5.8.4 creates them but does not remove
                      >> them after closing the program.

                      Only the jpegs generated by the Preview button will be left on the
                      drive; PTGui cannot delete them because the preview application may
                      still be running. All other temp files are cleaned up properly.

                      LoveFilm wrote:
                      > I Networked my PC and Mac, and assigned the Mac's hard drive as an
                      > additional temporary directory. Seemed to work well as I needed
                      > access to more HD space. But would writing to the Mac's larger /
                      > faster drive provide a speed benefit, especially since the rendering
                      > was being done over the network?

                      Depends on what the speed bottleneck is. It's quite possible that the
                      networking overhead slows down the transfer speed. Just try by stitching
                      a large panorama.

                      Some hardware recommendations (2.18):
                      http://www.ptgui.com/support.html#2_18

                      > I'll have to try that again.
                      >
                      > Now - what about Enblend / Smartblend. Will they also use the
                      > external drive (if set as the preferred directory in PTgui's
                      > preferences) to write their temp files to. I know that on the Mac
                      > (when using Xblend to pBlend to Enblend combo) that the files are
                      > written to the boot directory (unless Enblend is started from the
                      > command line, I think).

                      Enblend/smartblend will not use PTGui's temp dir setting. I'm not sure
                      where they write temp files though.

                      Joost
                    • Manfred Kröger
                      You re definitely talking about an outdated version of smartblend. Those old versions were quite fast but they weren t able to handle large or 16 bit panos.
                      Message 10 of 14 , Aug 1, 2006
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                        You're definitely talking about an outdated version of smartblend. Those
                        old versions were quite fast but they weren't able to handle large or 16
                        bit panos. Try the current version (or anything after 1.20, I think) on
                        a larger panorama and you will see that it's not Windows that's
                        swapping, it's smartblend! (I've seen my HDD's light flickering the
                        whole weekend while smartblend tried to blend a 274Mpx panorama. Memory
                        usage was only a few hundred MB out of my 2GB.)

                        If you ask me: On LoveFilm's laptop it's probably the 2.5'' drive that's
                        slowing the processing down.


                        Manfred

                        Fulvio Senore wrote:
                        >
                        > I am still using version 1.1.7 and ram surely improves its performance.
                        > When I stitch a pano (15 Mpx images), memory usage goes up to about 1.5
                        > GB for one or more very short moments.
                        > Now that I have 2GB of ram those are very short moments, when I had 1 GB
                        > the program started swapping and those moments were eternal.
                        >
                        > My opinion is that smartblend only uses the HD to read input images and
                        > write the output image. Of course with large images this can take some
                        > time. Then smartblend simply allocates memory from Windows when it needs
                        > it: if there is not enough memory Windows will start swapping. Some time
                        > ago, when I tried to modify enblend 1.x, I discovered that this is not
                        > an efficient way to handle a low memory situation. Explicitly swapping
                        > to temporary files from the application can be much faster. This is what
                        > enblend did: I disabled it and performance dropped.
                        >
                        > So having a lot of ram is very important for smartblend to run quickly:
                        > I have found that it is much faster then enblend 2.x.
                        >
                        > Fulvio Senore
                        >
                        > Manfred Kröger ha scritto:
                        > > I'm not really sure more RAM will improve smartblend's speed. It seems
                        > > to me that in order to process large images all the blending is done on
                        > > the hdd. This would explain why smartblend needed 14 GB on my drive
                        > > while the processor's and the RAM's usage was very low.
                        > >
                        > > Manfred
                        > >
                        > > Michael Asgian wrote:
                        > >
                        > >> Your hardware resources are kind of to small for what you do. Push
                        > >> more RAM if you can, you may have an empty slot... it will help alot,
                        > >> and ram is cheap lately.
                        > >>
                        > >> My problem wih smartblend are crashes... crashes my render machine
                        > >> from time to time... that's kind of anoying. especially when I'm
                        > >> running batch renderings... Dident try the latest beta yet,
                        > >>
                        > >> Anyone also experiences crashes? any fix?
                        > >>
                        > >> Mike
                        > >>
                        > >> LoveFilm <lovefilm@... <mailto:lovefilm%40yahoo.com>
                        > <mailto:lovefilm%40yahoo.com>> wrote: Can
                        > >> any one recount their rendering experiences using Smartblend?
                        > >>
                        > >> It gives great results but the processing time on my PC is outrageous.
                        > >> Is this normal?
                        > >>
                        > >> 31 image pano (three images in the sky intentionally left out)
                        > >>
                        > >> 8777 x 3072
                        > >>
                        > >> Processing 12 images per row.
                        > >>
                        > >> Smartblend reports a 5 hour + processing time to render just the first
                        > >> 12 images! And about 18hrs to render all of them at once.
                        > >>
                        > >> I'm on a Dell laptop - 1.6 mhz, 500mg ram. There is about 3.5 gig
                        > >> availbale on my boot drive.
                        > >>
                        > >> I know this is not an optimal system for this type of work. Does
                        > >> anyone know what kind of realistic speed improvements I might expect
                        > >> with a higher end configuration?
                        > >>
                        > >> Also - I think I saw some posts regarding this somewhere. Is there
                        > >> any equivalent to Samrtblend for the Mac?
                        > >>
                        > >>
                        > >>
                        > >>
                        > >>
                        > >>
                        > >> ---------------------------------
                        > >> Talk is cheap. Use Yahoo! Messenger to make PC-to-Phone calls. Great
                        > >> rates starting at 1¢/min.
                        > >>
                        > >> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                        > >>
                        > >>
                        > >>
                        > >
                        > >
                        > >
                        > >
                        > > --
                        > >
                        > > Yahoo! Groups Links
                        > >
                        > >
                        > >
                        > >
                        > >
                        > >
                        > >
                        > >
                        > >
                        >
                        >
                      • Dave 360texas.com
                        Thank you for clarifying the process. Maybe Enblend and Smartblend authors can also help clarify where their work files are maintained. Dave ... assigned ...
                        Message 11 of 14 , Aug 1, 2006
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                          Thank you for clarifying the process. Maybe Enblend and Smartblend
                          authors can also help clarify where their work files are maintained.

                          Dave
                          --- In PanoToolsNG@yahoogroups.com, Joost Nieuwenhuijse <imim@...>
                          wrote:
                          >
                          > > --- In PanoToolsNG@yahoogroups.com, "Dave 360texas.com"
                          > > <texas360dave@> wrote:
                          > >> I think PTgui and Blending occurs on the Harddrive. I noticed a
                          > >> 1/3rd decrease in stitching/blending time when in PTgui I
                          assigned
                          > >> my 80gb external hard drive PTgui workspace.
                          > >>
                          > >> I also noticed that PTgui creates TMP work files on my external
                          HD
                          > >> because I found 8 of them. I ask Joost if it was safe to
                          remove
                          > >> them. He said yes, PTgui 5.8.4 creates them but does not
                          remove
                          > >> them after closing the program.
                          >
                          > Only the jpegs generated by the Preview button will be left on the
                          > drive; PTGui cannot delete them because the preview application
                          may
                          > still be running. All other temp files are cleaned up properly.
                          >
                          > LoveFilm wrote:
                          > > I Networked my PC and Mac, and assigned the Mac's hard drive as
                          an
                          > > additional temporary directory. Seemed to work well as I needed
                          > > access to more HD space. But would writing to the Mac's larger /
                          > > faster drive provide a speed benefit, especially since the
                          rendering
                          > > was being done over the network?
                          >
                          > Depends on what the speed bottleneck is. It's quite possible that
                          the
                          > networking overhead slows down the transfer speed. Just try by
                          stitching
                          > a large panorama.
                          >
                          > Some hardware recommendations (2.18):
                          > http://www.ptgui.com/support.html#2_18
                          >
                          > > I'll have to try that again.
                          > >
                          > > Now - what about Enblend / Smartblend. Will they also use the
                          > > external drive (if set as the preferred directory in PTgui's
                          > > preferences) to write their temp files to. I know that on the
                          Mac
                          > > (when using Xblend to pBlend to Enblend combo) that the files are
                          > > written to the boot directory (unless Enblend is started from the
                          > > command line, I think).
                          >
                          > Enblend/smartblend will not use PTGui's temp dir setting. I'm not
                          sure
                          > where they write temp files though.
                          >
                          > Joost
                          >
                        • Michael Norel
                          Smartblend allocate temporary files in Windows temporary directory for current user. I plan to add option, to define directory for temporary files. ... a ...
                          Message 12 of 14 , Aug 2, 2006
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                            Smartblend allocate temporary files in Windows temporary directory
                            for current user. I plan to add option, to define directory for
                            temporary files.

                            --- In PanoToolsNG@yahoogroups.com, "Dave 360texas.com"
                            <texas360dave@...> wrote:
                            >
                            > Thank you for clarifying the process. Maybe Enblend and Smartblend
                            > authors can also help clarify where their work files are maintained.
                            >
                            > Dave
                            > --- In PanoToolsNG@yahoogroups.com, Joost Nieuwenhuijse <imim@>
                            > wrote:
                            > >
                            > > > --- In PanoToolsNG@yahoogroups.com, "Dave 360texas.com"
                            > > > <texas360dave@> wrote:
                            > > >> I think PTgui and Blending occurs on the Harddrive. I noticed
                            a
                            > > >> 1/3rd decrease in stitching/blending time when in PTgui I
                            > assigned
                            > > >> my 80gb external hard drive PTgui workspace.
                            > > >>
                            > > >> I also noticed that PTgui creates TMP work files on my
                            external
                            > HD
                            > > >> because I found 8 of them. I ask Joost if it was safe to
                            > remove
                            > > >> them. He said yes, PTgui 5.8.4 creates them but does not
                            > remove
                            > > >> them after closing the program.
                            > >
                            > > Only the jpegs generated by the Preview button will be left on
                            the
                            > > drive; PTGui cannot delete them because the preview application
                            > may
                            > > still be running. All other temp files are cleaned up properly.
                            > >
                            > > LoveFilm wrote:
                            > > > I Networked my PC and Mac, and assigned the Mac's hard drive as
                            > an
                            > > > additional temporary directory. Seemed to work well as I needed
                            > > > access to more HD space. But would writing to the Mac's
                            larger /
                            > > > faster drive provide a speed benefit, especially since the
                            > rendering
                            > > > was being done over the network?
                            > >
                            > > Depends on what the speed bottleneck is. It's quite possible that
                            > the
                            > > networking overhead slows down the transfer speed. Just try by
                            > stitching
                            > > a large panorama.
                            > >
                            > > Some hardware recommendations (2.18):
                            > > http://www.ptgui.com/support.html#2_18
                            > >
                            > > > I'll have to try that again.
                            > > >
                            > > > Now - what about Enblend / Smartblend. Will they also use the
                            > > > external drive (if set as the preferred directory in PTgui's
                            > > > preferences) to write their temp files to. I know that on the
                            > Mac
                            > > > (when using Xblend to pBlend to Enblend combo) that the files
                            are
                            > > > written to the boot directory (unless Enblend is started from
                            the
                            > > > command line, I think).
                            > >
                            > > Enblend/smartblend will not use PTGui's temp dir setting. I'm not
                            > sure
                            > > where they write temp files though.
                            > >
                            > > Joost
                            > >
                            >
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