First on the hit parade of new features in CS3 is a big one for After Effects users. It’s not an “eye-candy” feature, so you won’t see it in our shorter product demos, but it means so much to so many people since the number one request by After Effects users is to make the app render faster.
One of several ways in which we’ve made After Effects CS3 both RAM Preview and Render faster is with support for Multiprocessing.
The new Multiprocessing Preferences dialog in After Effects CS3
If you’ve got a multiprocessor and/or multi-core system, After Effects farms out each frame of your comp to each processor, so it can RAM Preview and Render multiple frames simultaneously. You will need 512MB RAM for each process, since After Effects will actually launch background processes to run on your multiple processors, but as long as you’ve got enough RAM you can render 2 frames at a time on a 2-core system, 4 at time on a dual/dual , 8 at a time on some of the new high end Windows machines (and the 8-core Macs that we expect to see any day now).