Performance  

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Six
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Performance

by Six » Wed Aug 11, 2010 10:58 pm

Hello,
I just purchased APG last night and am running the 2.5alpha release. I'm not sure if I am having performance issues or whether it is normal to take this long to render a pano.

Input: 6 rows & 11 columns of jpegs taken using a Gigapan head/Canon 7D/14mm wide angle.
Bracketing at: 1/1250, 1/4000, 1/8000
Total input pictures: 198

Compiling Platform:
Windows 7 x64
Two Quad core Xeons @ 3Ghz (I have set autopan to use all 8 cores)
32 GB Ram
Nvidia CX with 1.5GB ram (I have set autopan to use GPU)
Scratch Disks: 2 (1@15000rpm SCSI, 1@2GB 7200rpm SataII in RAID0)

I have asked APG to perform exposure fusion and to render a layered PSD.
The initial control point and color correction took about an hour.
The render, however, is still going on, (it is currently at the Blending step), and with over 4 hours of computing so far with the progress bar indicating about 75% done.)

I have it set to Normal Priority in order to allow for reading of web pages and reading email in the foreground (nothing particularly processor intensive).

Does this seem normal to take this long, or are there ways I can speed things up?

Thank you for your help & kindest regards,

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by tived » Thu Aug 12, 2010 1:20 am

i think the last part is disk intensive, but i am a little puzzled.

this and bigger pano is what i am doing, i might just run one like it a bit later today. i have to admit that i do all my HDR in PTGui at moment till APG is ready for prime time HDR.

:-) you are my almost perfect test case, as I am looking to build a similar system.

how do you find Quadro CX card? is the scsi good old scsi or sas/scsi? what model are your cpu's 55xx or 56xx? sorry for all the Q's just trying to get a better picture of what you have.

thanks

Henrik

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Six
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by Six » Thu Aug 12, 2010 2:03 am

Hello,
In answer to your questions:
how do you find Quadro CX card?
I purchased it from PNY for ~1,700 Nov 2008. (I'm not sure if Nvidia still makes it.)

is the scsi good old scsi or sas/scsi?
Seagate SAS Cheetah 15.5K, 73GB

what model are your cpu's 55xx or 56xx?
Xeon 5472 (Nov 2008)

sorry for all the Q's just trying to get a better picture of what you have.
np

As to the HDR, the render is now complete, but color & exposure are quite distorted when viewed in either CS5, Photomatix, or ACDSee. I can see it also had some noticeable CP errors. None of this is meant as a criticism of Autopano - I am sure I will get better results, in less time, as I learn the most appropriate APG settings for a) my hardware, b) the input pictures, c) the desired output. Any suggestions from the board are most welcome and deeply appreciated.

thank you for your reply,
kindest regards.

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by mediavets » Thu Aug 12, 2010 6:02 am

Six wrote:As to the HDR, the render is now complete, but color & exposure are quite distorted when viewed in either CS5, Photomatix, or ACDSee.

It is a known bug that colour correction is not working properly in 2.5 Alpha 1.

I can see it also had some noticeable CP errors. None of this is meant as a criticism of Autopano - I am sure I will get better results, in less time, as I learn the most appropriate APG settings for a) my hardware, b) the input pictures, c) the desired output. Any suggestions from the board are most welcome and deeply appreciated.

Did you use the Gigapan Import wizard/filter?

Can you show use screenshot of the pano so we can have some idea of the sort of scene you were photographing. Did it require HDR?
Last edited by mediavets on Thu Aug 12, 2010 6:03 am, edited 1 time in total.
Andrew Stephens
Many different Nodal Ninja and Agnos pano heads. Merlin/Panogear mount with Papywizard on Nokia Internet tablets.
Nikon D5100 and D40, Sigma 8mm f3.5 FE, Nikon 10.5mm FE, 35mm, 50mm, 18-55mm, 70-210mm. Promote control.

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Six
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by Six » Thu Aug 12, 2010 8:28 am

Hi Andrew, thank you for your reply.

In answer to your question, yes, I did use the Gigapan Import Wizard.
That was not the problem, however, I did find out what was.... me!

After reading some other posts, specifically one regarding the use of the gigapan epic pro and a computer rig not too dissimilar to mine
( http://www.autopano.net/forum/t9607-source,destination-and-temp-file-locations ),
it occurred to me that the problem wasn't due to hardware, or even my settings within APG. Rather, the problem lay in the source files...namely, I had asked APG to digest far more pictures than APG actually required.

My first foray into panos was this last week with the Gigapan Stitch that came with my Gigapan Epic Pro. Using their software, I was getting stitching errors until I set the FOV much lower than the actual FOV offered by my Canon 14mm. The problem arose with Autopano in that I had asked APG to process the same number of pictures as had been required by Gigapan Stitch. In the case of Autopano (or at least in this specific case), less is more.

By manually deleting every other column, and then three pictures each from the remaining columns, I was able to provide APG a reduced set of input pics (54 instead of 198), yet still provided ample coverage due to the large FOV native to the 14mm.

The result is a fantastic pano, output onto three layers, each sorted on shutter speed. It will now be no problem to use Photomatix to perform the exposure fusion, or manually with CS5 (as you noted, APG 2.5a still has some color correction issues.)
Oh, and the REALLY great part about giving APG the correct number of images to digest - there are not only no discernable stitching errors - the speed was outstanding! Even taking out the ghosts, as you can see from the log below, the total time was well under 6 minutes. A far cry from the previous 5 hour render time!
---------------
Rendering statistiques:
Total time: 531.391 s
Initilization time: 15.0103 s
Wrapping time: 169.239 s
Cutting time: 189.115 s
Blending time: 49.979 s
Saving time: 83.1306 s
Temporarly data readed/written:
0 Bytes/0 Bytes
---------------
Way To Go AutoPano!
kindest regards

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by HansKeesom » Fri Aug 13, 2010 10:57 am

Hi Six,

I enjoyed reading these posts.

It shows to me that computer power is great but that part of the art of making panorama's is finding the right number of rows and columns for a given focal length. Mind you, not necesarrely the minimum number of rows and columns as you want to be save and rather have the computer work a bit harder then having to manually try to solve a problem or even go back to the location for reshooting.

Also choosing the right focal length and number of rows and columns with the given computerpower that you have is important. APP is surely able to process large panoramas on limited computers but that can take a lot of time.

Having only 6 GB of memory I have limited myself to using a 10 mm lens on my APS-C body. This gives me reasonbly fast processing times. APP can process larger sets but then it will be much slower on my system and often there is no need for the higher resolution.

Also I have choosen to shoot at JPEG+RAW. This allows me to process a set of panoramas based on the jpegs within 24 hours into a virtual tour while having the RAW-files as backup for those panoramas that need better colors etc.

Finally, when processing multiple panorama's in a batch I try to organise myself such that while APP is running I am doing something else then waiting on APP to finish. Running a batch of pano's while doing other work, having diner or being a sleep is much nicer then waiting.

Again, thanks for the insights
Regards, Hans Keesom
I stitch and render for other photographers. Price: 25 euro or less, no cure no pay. If you want to concentrate on your business let me do the stitching for you. Free TB of Dropbox space when you have more then 250 euro business a year.


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