View Full Version : Why has After Effects suddenly become useless?

03 March 2010, 07:58 AM
I am really at a loss on this one...

Basically, I have spent the last 3 days rendering out pieces for a graphics package. Specifically at this point, I am working on title pages. I am experiencing a behavior from After Effects that is, quite honestly killing me - the renders keep failing with a message stating :

After Effects error: unable to allocate space for a 1920 x 1080 image buffer. You may be experiencing fragmentation. In the Memory and Cache Preferences dialog box, try decreasing the Maximum RAM Cache Size value and selecting the Enable Disk Cache option, increasing the Maximum Memory Usage, or both

Ooooookaaaaay... So I do that (increasing the disk cache to 10000mb), and the result is always the same. My first instinct was to start stripping things away... ultimately, I got all the way down to a single pre-comp with 1 image sequence and 1 object buffer, set as a luma matte. There was also a mask on the pre-comp... and even that failed!

It's as though something invisible is just chewing the hell out of the RAM.... while rendering, I'll watch the RAM percentage climb dramatically until just seconds in the render it stops when the RAM usage is at about 92%. Stranger still is that the behavior occurred in my last test even though there was nothing present in the early frames, meaning that the program is using like hundreds of megabytes of RAM per frame to calculate a vacuum... This is just not normal and it is driving me insane.

Some facts about the project and set up

Animation length - 10 sec
Output format - 8 bit TIFF sequence (PSD Layers)
Resolution - 1920 x 1020
Straight Alpha

Rendered out of C4D R11.5,
Brought into After Effects CS3

8 - Core (3.2GHz) Mac Pro, 16GB RAM. OSX 10.6.2

Thanks in advance...

03 March 2010, 09:32 AM
I honestly have no clue, but these days Mac's being so effed up, anything is possible. Have you done the usual of purging all disk caches? Trashed the prefs? Reinstalled Quicktime/ disabled Quicktime X? I would also just on a guess always run a tool like OnyX and flush the system caches. This often fixes the weirdest issues. Also, does the issue occur with files other than the C4D rendered ones? From reading on various forums, I gather that - once again - C4D's multipass system and image savers have introduced quite a few severe issues in the latest versions and produce "illegal" files with certain combinations of settings.


03 March 2010, 04:31 PM
I honestly have no idea, but here is something you can try.

Use the "secret" option under preferences. Yes, there really is a secret option if you are not familiar with it. You need to hold the shift key while selecting preferences and it should be there.

Once in the secret menu, you will see an option to purge memory every nth frames during rendering. This has helped me in the past with large renders,... hope it can work for you.

03 March 2010, 08:01 PM
Mylenium, I disagree with your assertion that Macs are in any way 'effed up'. The issue was isolated to CS3, running CS4 solved the issue.

Thanks all

Ian Jones
03 March 2010, 06:59 AM
Mylenium, the only thing that is effed up is Adobe's ageing and bloated codebase. They need to rewrite sooner rather than later.

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03 March 2010, 06:59 AM
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