VEAI V3.x is not suitable for power users

You took a beautiful piece of software and destroyed it. Version 2.6x was the best. Anything 3.x is awful. Idiot proofing something this much ought to be a crime.

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I’m curious now. I bought Video AI starting with the version 3.01. Not happy with the rendering time, as I use the massive Davinci Resolve Studio 18, which will render 1080P to 4k on my laptop in about half the time that Video AI will. I have an older machine that has an nVidea Quadro T1000 card with the latest drivers, really intended for graphics and photo editing, but Resove works well with it. This is disappointing, I feel like I wasted my money. You mention that version 2.6x of Video AI is better. Is it faster than the version 3 updates? In what ways was it better?

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Well I would not go that far being so harsh. Version 3 could be okay if it gets back to the functionality of version 2 including a properly working preview and a decent processing speed. :slight_smile:

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I have been a programmer all my life. And I always applied the last part of the Hippocratic Oath to myself: “Above all, do no harm!” Aka, whatever you do, don’t make it worse! And if you do, don’t release yet. 3.x was released nonetheless, and it’s twice as slow, and comes with an utterly broken Preview. Especially the latter suggests no one even bothered to test this (isn’t this forum filled with beta-testers?).

You can say 3.x has to go thru some growing pains. Fine. But with the way their licensing works, I’m essentially hosed, as 2.6.4 is no longer getting updates, and by the time 3.x becomes stable, and on par with the former again, we’re easily 1 year down the line. Now, don’t get me wrong: I will pay for another year (and likely thereafter too), as I believe in the product. But some seriously odd decisions were made, I feel.

I usually output to ProRes 422 HQ (using Proteus 3). That produces huge files. Not a problem, as I have a large scratch disk for that. What IS an issue, however, is a weird second pass, that writes a new, second file, along the first one, after the movie is done. And when your output file is ca. 1 Terabyte to begin with (normal for a ~1.5 hours movie), then this absurd 2nd pass means your hard disk is waiting another several hours to write a new 1 Terabyte file! (A normal SATA 3 disk) For added headers, they say. But 2.6.4 certainly didn’t do this. I assuredly call that a regression.

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It’s typical modern development practice. Just concentrate on new features that apparently no one asked for and forget about performance.

Most of us just want better and better performance from most releases. Not more useless UI changes that we have to get used to.

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Well surely Topaz test this stuff before release? Do benchmarks and comparisons?

Oh no…they leave that to paying customers with 2 weeks left of their annual subscription… :roll_eyes:

From what I remember no one wants to do QA testing any more. Why bother when you have customers to do that for you.

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yes, but reporting issues is one thing; getting them sorted a different one!

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Fair enough. :slight_smile:

Now I’m left wondering what a ‘Power User’ is. In my head I thought it was someone that is able to use the application more fully through deep knowledge of the application than the average casual user.
If I am right, than TVAI 3 is much more suitable than VEAI 2 for that, just because of the command line interface. All of the complaints in this thread (except the preview window) can be avoided by using the command line.

I agree that some manager somewhere should be demoted over the date of this release, but I am hopeful that TVAI will become the best version ever in all ways.
Because of the holidays, I don’t really expect great improvements to start making it into the updates until late February.

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February 2023 or 2024?

I think the Power User thread title is a bit misleading, that means different things to different people. But we aren’t paying $100, $200 or whatever for a command interface. That’s a bonus for a limited set of users - most of the paying users I suggest just want software that contains no more than the usual set of minor bugs common to most commercial video software, with any major bugs treated with urgency and priority to rush out a fix - usually within a few weeks.

That’s not what’s been happening with TVAI 3.0.x - perhaps for what the owners think are sound commercial reasons e.g. cashflow but that approach will do the company no good at all in the long run as it must be having a negative effect on the company’s reputation.

Well it’s having a negative effect on me, and I have not renewed, not even at their usual November $99 price, a price that shows little regard for the problems being encountered by users. As it stands, it’s arguable if a renewal is even worth half that price, let alone the post-sale $149 renewal price.

But in fairness, there are a couple of things I can praise. 1) Apollo slomo works better for me than Chronos - albeit much slower. 2) 3.0.x versions have been promised to continue to be available to
users who were licenced for 3.0.0 (but subsequently expired) and in that spirit, I do respond to requests for file uploads and comment when bugs are encountered. I just hope the versions 3.1.x aren’t introduced before the main bugs are fixed.

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It really just stinks for everyone.

2023, but I know how little things that sound easy can turn out to be much bigger and deeper problems. At work, six months ago, I was assigned a “Three week really simple app migration.” It’s not done yet. Super close, but again, that “Three weeks” was way unrealistic.

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Personally, the topic title holds little meaning to me. I figured they meant something like ‘A person who uses VEAI a lot.’ Who cares.

The CLI is cute, and I believe I was even among those asking for one. But tell me how that annoying 2nd pass I mentioned, creating an extra ~1 T file, can be avoided using a command line? It can’t, of course. And I am disappointed they chose NVENC as H265 encoder, as it produces sub-par quality output. And some things have drastically slowed down.

At the end of the day, of course, you want a good tool first, then a cute CLI. In that order.

I was about to, but they seem to have fixed that. Before 3.0.4, I remember seeing very clearly in the generated command, where they were defining the two .mov files. I’m not seeing that nor a second file anymore.

Wait, I am running 3.0.4 too. :slight_smile: And it definitely creates a 2nd file (ProRes 422 HQ). Is there a setting somewhere I missed?

I could not agree more. Version 3 sucks. There is no strategy in how you re-wrote it. If it had simply allowed at any time the export command to work, it would have been more tolerable. And worse, it is SOOOO freakin’ bad that your people are overwhelmed and I can’t get a response.

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They had the right idea, like adding a CLI (especially the notion that you can now use VEAI as a ffmpeg filter is very cool, and people may be underestimating how powerful and useful that is). But why they felt they had to rewrite the lot from scratch, is still beyond me. Especially when the result effectively reduced the product to beta software. That is, in itself, not uncommon when redoing everything, but then, as others have said too, the timing of releasing it as a replacement for 2.6.4 was rather odd.

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I would never pay $149 for a renewal. I did just take this November’s $99 deal, though, so I’m good until Jan 2024. Because I think it will take at least half-a-year for VEA to reach the stability of 2.6.4 again.

I’ve decided to leave as is and come back in a year and check the forums. If its just as bad I’ll give up.

I thought I would just mention that the command line interface existing in TVEAI since version 1.4.2 (July 2020) and persisted until version 2.4 (August 2021) when it was removed.

I started using Topaz around 1.6 version and currently still use 2.3 - but there were guides and users using the CLI for a long time for this application. This is the update notes from 2.4

image

The CLI is simply being brought back again for v3 which is interesting given that they removed it because they didn’t have time to support it for the number of people that use it - but its fine now again apparently.

However, on the subject of “Power User”, I have now upscaled around 140 episodes of DVD’s, and test upscaled sequences conservatively in excess of 1500 times now over the last couple years. I have fairly extensive experience with almost all models released, and given I am using a JSON edited model in 2.3 (JSON editing was removed in 2.4 along with the CLI), for Artemis V8, which is not native to 2.3 and is an even older model, because all of that testing has shown this is the best model, I would be at least close to accurate that “Power User” may apply to me.

I only say this, because in its current form, V3 is unusable for me. Not only in models themselves, but it simply cannot do the same processes as easily or as quickly and simply the older GUI’s did. This is mainly because extensive upscaling and preprocessing of long period upscales is almost exclusively done in image sequences - and V3 broke almost everything to do with handling input and output of image sequences, as well as Avisynth scripts which I have used for almost all upscales since I started.

Some of those fixes are coming apparently, so I wait patiently for them, but the paradox I have is so far all testing, including in Beta of V3, has produced crappier output than I can get in V2.3, so I probably need to also wait for the models to be worked on again as well.

I know not everyone agrees, but so far it feels like if you want to get a good output with TVEAI, don’t touch any of the V3 versions for the time being and wait.

But it may just be me. With the inability to use the model I use for almost all upscales now missing from 2.4 onwards, until I can find a way to match the output in future with one of the newer models - Proteus for instance if they work a lot more on it - I will probably be stuck on V2.3 indefinitely because for the actual content, I will use whichever version and model produces what I think is the best output I can get without going to levels like Joel, who combines 42 passes into a single clip (aint nobody got time for that).

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Good qualifications. Though, from that, it’s sounding like you would also say 2.6.4 is not suitable for power users either.

Either way, I hope TVAI will turn into something people can load and click once to get a good result—with the additional ability to fine tune the snot out of things for those that are open to the idea of running 42 passes.