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Quick Tip: Allocating RAM in After Effects

Caleb Ward

Is your computer optimized for After Effects? In this post, we share a simple tip to rev up your processing speeds in AE.

If your rendering time is taking longer than expected, a change in RAM allocation may be all you need to speed up After Effects.

I confess, when I starting using After Effects a few years back I was befuddled at the long rendering times. My computer was new and had plenty of RAM, but rendering was taking forever. Then, I learned this quick tip that has dramatically altered the performance of the app. Hopefully it’ll do the same for you!

Adobe gives you the option to change how much of your computer’s RAM is being used by After Effects (and the other applications in the Creative Suite). Depending on the RAM you have installed in your system, you will want to experiment with your allocation settings. After Effects is 64 bit, which allows you to take full advantage of your available RAM (from Adobe):

  • You can render much larger compositions—both for preview and for final output—with larger frame sizes and larger source files.
  • RAM previews can be much longer.
  • You can work with higher color bit depths without encountering memory limitations.
  • After Effects can cache more items, which reduce the frequency with which frames and components of frames are re-rendered.

Modifying your AE RAM allocation settings is simple. Here’s how it’s done:

1. Open up After Effects

After Effects

2. Go into your AE Preferences

Click on After Effects > Preferences > Memory & Multiprocessing.

After Effects Memory

3. Change ‘RAM for Other Applications’


4. Click ‘Ok’

And you’re done! You should see an increase in your rendering speeds in After Effects. If your computer is still going slow you might need either a new graphics card or maybe even a better processor. If you want more info about how to optimize your machine for After Effects check out the system requirements or memory and storage pages on Adobe’s site.

Have any tips for optimizing your system for After Effects?
Share in the comments below.