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HPC as a Service for High Performance Video Rendering

In this week’s Sponsored Post, Katie (Garrison) Rivera, of One Stop Systems, explains how HPC can act as a service for high performance video rendering. 

Video rendering is the process of using computer programs to create a two-dimensional image from a three-dimensional representation. These images are highly complex as they have to take into account all of the aspects of the object: viewpoint, lighting, texture etc. GPUs are commonly used in rendering because they are able to help a CPU perform complex rendering calculations. In addition to the movie and television industry, rendering is used in architecture, and the video game industry. Many of these rendering processes are computationally intensive.

Katie (Garrison) Rivera, One Stop Systems

Katie (Garrison) Rivera, Marketing Communications Manager, One Stop Systems

Back in 2012, global visual effects giant Rhythm & Hues (R&H) used NVIDIA GPUs and a 3D projection-mapping program called Rampage to complete a large share of the rendering for the visually stunning film, “Life of Pi.” According to CreativeCow.net, “With Rampage running on NVIDIA GPUs, artists were able to quickly project custom 2D matte paintings onto simple 3D geometry and review in real-time how each sky would look, aligning with the vision of the director and VFX supervisor, and creating immediate lighting reference images to hand off to other teams of artists.” The rendering for this film required an immense amount of compute power, hence the use of GPUs. Since this movie, many other films have utilized NVIDIA GPUs for rendering applications to speed up the process. In the past 5 years, GPUs have gotten even more powerful so rendering tasks can be completed even faster than before.

Katie Rivera - GPUs have gotten even more powerful so rendering tasks can be completed even faster than before.Click To Tweet

A lot of rendering servers tout powerful CPUs. But GPUs can really boost the performance of a rendering server. CPUs have a few, very fast cores that are optimized for sequential tasks. But rendering processes consist of a large number of tasks that need to happen simultaneously. When running such a large parallel process like this, GPUs are far more efficient because they contain thousands of smaller cores designed for handling multiple tasks simultaneously. The more GPUs you have available, the more power available for computing rendering calculations. One Stop Systems has the densest solution on the market with the High Density Compute Accelerator (HDCA). The HDCA connects 16 NVIDIA GPUs to a single server, providing an immense amount of compute power for rendering applications.

A lot of rendering servers tout powerful CPUs. But GPUs can really boost the performance of a rendering server.

GPU Accelerated Servers

Since its initial release in 2013, the HDCA has been upgraded continuously each time NVIDIA has released a new GPU.

Since its initial release in 2013, the HDCA has been upgraded continuously each time NVIDIA has released a new GPU. Over the past four years, OSS has exhibited the show stopping HDCA at various tradeshows. Attendees have marveled at the HDCA’s impressive 16 NVIDIA GPUs packed in the 3U chassis.  Now for the first time, One Stop Systems has ventured into the HPC as a Service (HPCaaS) market. Customers can rent time on any of our GPU accelerators instead of purchasing their own systems. With this new service, customers can avoid long planning cycles and capital equipment approvals.  They have access to incredible GPU power when their projects demand high performance. This service is especially beneficial for smaller companies and individuals who don’t have the capital to purchase an entire system. OSS offers various options for number of GPUs and length of rental time. Just as GPUs have disrupted many industries once dominated by CPUs, being able to rent compute power instead of having to purchase it will have a positive impact on many applications like video rendering.

This guest article was submitted by Katie (Garrison) Rivera, marketing communications manager at One Stop Systems.

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