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GPU Accelerated Rendering & Hardware Encoding/Decoding

  1. Adobe Premiere Pro User Guide
  2. Beta releases
    1. Beta Program Overview
    2. Premiere Pro Beta Home
    3. Beta features
      1. New Spectrum UI
      2. Free stock audio from Adobe Stock 
  3. Getting started
    1. Get started with Adobe Premiere Pro
    2. What's new in Premiere Pro
    3. Best practices for updating Premiere Pro
    4. Keyboard shortcuts in Premiere Pro
    5. Accessibility in Premiere Pro
    6. Frequently asked questions
    7. Release notes
  4. Hardware and operating system requirements
    1. Hardware recommendations
    2. System requirements
    3. GPU and GPU Driver requirements
    4. GPU Accelerated Rendering & Hardware Encoding/Decoding
  5. Creating projects
    1. Start a new project
    2. Open projects
    3. Move and delete projects
    4. Work with multiple open projects
    5. Work with Project Shortcuts
    6. Backward compatibility of Premiere Pro projects
    7. Open and edit Premiere Rush projects in Premiere Pro
    8. Best Practices: Create your own project templates
  6. Workspaces and workflows
    1. Workspaces
    2. Import and export FAQs
    3. Working with Panels
    4. Windows touch and gesture controls
    5. Use Premiere Pro in a dual-monitor setup
    1. Install and activate
    2. Use with Premiere Pro and After Effects
    3. Integrate Adobe Workfront and
    4. Share for review with
    5. Invite collaborators to co-edit a project
    6. Frequently asked questions
  8. Import media
    1. Importing
      1. Transfer files
      2. Importing still images
      3. Importing digital audio
    2. Importing from Avid or Final Cut
      1. Importing AAF project files from Avid Media Composer
      2. Importing XML project files from Final Cut Pro 7 and Final Cut Pro X
    3. File formats
      1. Supported file formats
      2. Support for Blackmagic RAW
    4. Working with timecode
  9. Editing
    1. Edit video
    2. Sequences
      1. Create and change sequences
      2. Set In and Out points in the Source Monitor
      3. Add clips to sequences
      4. Rearrange and move clips
      5. Find, select, and group clips in a sequence
      6. Remove clips from a sequence
      7. Change sequence settings
      8. Edit from sequences loaded into the Source Monitor
      9. Simplify sequences
      10. Rendering and previewing sequences
      11. Working with markers
      12. Source patching and track targeting
      13. Scene edit detection
    3. Cut and trim clips
      1. Split or cut clips
      2. Trim clips
      3. Edit in Trim mode
      4. Perform J cuts and L cuts
      5. Create and play clips
      6. Adjust Trimming and Playback preferences
    4. Video
      1. Synchronizing audio and video with Merge Clips
      2. Render and replace media
      3. Undo, history, and events
      4. Freeze and hold frames
      5. Working with aspect ratios
    5. Audio
      1. Overview of audio in Premiere Pro
      2. Edit audio clips in the Source Monitor
      3. Audio Track Mixer
      4. Adjusting volume levels
      5. Edit, repair, and improve audio using Essential Sound panel
      6. Enhance Speech
      7. Enhance Speech FAQs
      8. Audio Category Tagging
      9. Automatically duck audio
      10. Remix audio
      11. Monitor clip volume and pan using Audio Clip Mixer
      12. Audio balancing and panning
      13. Advanced Audio - Submixes, downmixing, and routing
      14. Audio effects and transitions
      15. Working with audio transitions
      16. Apply effects to audio
      17. Measure audio using the Loudness Radar effect
      18. Recording audio mixes
      19. Editing audio in the timeline
      20. Audio channel mapping in Premiere Pro
      21. Use Adobe Stock audio in Premiere Pro
    6. Text-Based Editing
      1. Text-Based Editing
      2. Text-Based Editing FAQs
    7. Advanced editing
      1. Multi-camera editing workflow
      2. Editing VR
    8. Best Practices
      1. Best Practices: Mix audio faster
      2. Best Practices: Editing efficiently
      3. Editing workflows for feature films
  10. Video Effects and Transitions
    1. Overview of video effects and transitions
    2. Effects
      1. Types of effects in Premiere Pro
      2. Apply and remove effects
      3. Effect presets
      4. Metadata effect in Premiere Pro
      5. Automatically reframe video for different social media channels
      6. Color correction effects
      7. Effects Manager
      8. Change duration and speed of clips
      9. Adjustment Layers
      10. Stabilize footage
    3. Transitions
      1. Applying transitions in Premiere Pro
      2. Modifying and customizing transitions
      3. Morph Cut
  11. Titles, Graphics, and Captions    
    1. Overview of the Essential Graphics panel
    2. Graphics and Titles
      1. Create a title
      2. Linked and Track Styles
      3. Working with style browser
    3. Graphics
      1. Create a shape
      2. Draw with the Pen tool
      3. Align and distribute objects
      4. Change the appearance of text and shapes
      5. Apply gradients
      6. Add Responsive Design features to your graphics
      7. Install and use Motion Graphics templates
      8. Replace images or videos in Motion Graphics templates
      9. Use data-driven Motion Graphics templates
    4. Captions
      1. Speech to Text
      2. Download language packs for transcription
      3. Working with captions
      4. Check spelling and Find and Replace
      5. Export text
      6. Speech to Text FAQs
    5. Best Practices: Faster graphics workflows
    6. Retiring the Legacy Titler FAQs
    7. Upgrade Legacy titles to Source Graphics
  12. Fonts and emojis
    1. Color fonts
    2. Emojis
  13. Animation and Keyframing
    1. Adding, navigating, and setting keyframes
    2. Animating effects
    3. Use Motion effect to edit and animate clips
    4. Optimize keyframe automation
    5. Moving and copying keyframes
    6. Viewing and adjusting effects and keyframes
  14. Compositing
    1. Compositing, alpha channels, and adjusting clip opacity
    2. Masking and tracking
    3. Blending modes
  15. Color Correction and Grading
    1. Overview: Color workflows in Premiere Pro
    2. Color Settings
    3. Auto Color
    4. Get creative with color using Lumetri looks
    5. Adjust color using RGB and Hue Saturation Curves
    6. Correct and match colors between shots
    7. Using HSL Secondary controls in the Lumetri Color panel
    8. Create vignettes
    9. Looks and LUTs
    10. Lumetri scopes
    11. Display Color Management
    12. Timeline tone mapping
    13. HDR for broadcasters
    14. Enable DirectX HDR support
  16. Exporting media
    1. Export video
    2. Export Preset Manager
    3. Workflow and overview for exporting
    4. Quick export
    5. Exporting for the Web and mobile devices
    6. Export a still image
    7. Exporting projects for other applications
    8. Exporting OMF files for Pro Tools
    9. Export to Panasonic P2 format
    10. Export settings
      1. Export settings reference
      2. Basic Video Settings
      3. Encoding Settings
    11. Best Practices: Export faster
  17. Collaborative editing
    1. Collaboration in Premiere Pro
    2. Get started with collaborative video editing
    3. Create Team Projects
    4. Add and manage media in Team Projects
    5. Invite and manage collaborators
    6. Share and manage changes with collaborators
    7. View auto saves and versions of Team Projects
    8. Manage Team Projects
    9. Linked Team Projects
    10. Frequently asked questions
  18. Long form and Episodic workflows
    1. Long Form and Episodic Workflow Guide
    2. Using Productions
    3. How clips work across projects in a Production
    4. Best Practices: Working with Productions
  19. Working with other Adobe applications
    1. After Effects and Photoshop
    2. Dynamic Link
    3. Audition
    4. Prelude
  20. Organizing and Managing Assets
    1. Working in the Project panel
    2. Organize assets in the Project panel
    3. Playing assets
    4. Search assets
    5. Creative Cloud Libraries
    6. Sync Settings in Premiere Pro
    7. Consolidate, transcode, and archive projects
    8. Managing metadata
    9. Best Practices
      1. Best Practices: Learning from broadcast production
      2. Best Practices: Working with native formats
  21. Improving Performance and Troubleshooting
    1. Set preferences
    2. Reset and restore preferences
    3. Recovery Mode
    4. Working with Proxies
      1. Proxy overview
      2. Ingest and Proxy Workflow
    5. Check if your system is compatible with Premiere Pro
    6. Premiere Pro for Apple silicon
    7. Eliminate flicker
    8. Interlacing and field order
    9. Smart rendering
    10. Control surface support
    11. Best Practices: Working with native formats
    12. Knowledge Base
      1. Known issues
      2. Fixed issues
      3. Fix Premiere Pro crash issues
      4. Unable to migrate settings after updating Premiere Pro
      5. Green and pink video in Premiere Pro or Premiere Rush
      6. How do I manage the Media Cache in Premiere Pro?
      7. Fix errors when rendering or exporting
      8. Troubleshoot issues related to playback and performance in Premiere Pro
  22. Extensions and plugins
    1. Installing plugins and extensions in Premiere Pro
    2. Latest plugins from third-party developers
  23. Video and audio streaming
    1. Secure Reliable Transport (SRT)
  24. Monitoring Assets and Offline Media
    1. Monitoring assets
      1. Using the Source Monitor and Program Monitor
      2. Using the Reference Monitor
    2. Offline media
      1. Working with offline clips
      2. Creating clips for offline editing
      3. Relinking offline media

This article provides insight into Mercury Playback Engine (GPU Accelerated) and Hardware Decoding/Encoding in Adobe Premiere Pro and Adobe Media Encoder.

Mercury Playback Engine (GPU Accelerated) renderer

Adobe Premiere Pro and Adobe Media Encoder can take advantage of available GPUs on your system to distribute the processing load between the CPU and the GPU to get better performance. Currently, most of the processing is done by CPU and GPU assists in processing certain tasks and features.

The Mercury Playback Engine (GPU Accelerated) renderer is used to render GPU accelerated effects and features.
Here is the list of GPU accelerated effects in Adobe Premiere Pro. To identify the GPU accelerated effects, navigate to the Effects panel and look for the Accelerated Effects icon.

GPU Accelerated effects icon
GPU Accelerated effects icon

Apart from processing these effects, the Mercury Playback Engine (GPU Accelerated) is used for image processing, resizes, color space conversions, recoloring and more. It is also used for timeline playback/scrubbing and full-screen playback using Mercury Transmit.

Here is the list of recommended graphics card for Adobe Premiere Pro.
It is recommended to have GPUs with 4GB of VRAM but this may vary depending on the type of work you are doing in Adobe Premiere Pro.

A general guideline to VRAM requirements:

  • 1080p - 4GB VRAM
  • 4K – 6GB VRAM 
  • 6K or higher – 8GB or higher VRAM

For VR, 6GB of VRAM would be a good starting point. In case you are working with higher resolution stereoscopic frames (like 8K x 8K) you may need more VRAM. While using NVIDIA GPUs, ensure that you have the latest driver installed and it supports CUDA 9.2. 


An important aspect to keep in mind is that purchasing an older graphics card means driver support will end sooner than a newer card.

  • For Adobe Premiere Pro, go to File > Project Settings > General > Video Rendering and Playback, set the Renderer to Mercury Playback Engine GPU Acceleration (OpenCL/CUDA/Metal).
Renderer in Premiere Pro
Set Renderer in Adobe Premiere Pro

  • For Adobe Media Encoder, go to Preferences > General and set the Renderer to Mercury Playback Engine GPU Acceleration (OpenCL/CUDA/Metal) under the Video Rendering section.
Renderer in Adobe Media Encoder
Set Renderer in Adobe Media Encoder

In Adobe Media Encoder you can also set the Renderer at the lower-right corner of the Queue panel.


If the Mercury Playback Engine GPU Acceleration is not available as an option after updating or reinstalling Adobe Premiere Pro, then perform a clean installation of GPU drivers to solve the issue.

  • Clean Installation of NVIDIA drivers.
  • Clean Installation of AMD® drivers.

Adobe Premiere Pro uses a single GPU during playback and multiple GPUs for other tasks such as Render In to Out and for export. CrossFire can be set up to present multiple GPUs as a single logical GPU and for that case, Adobe Premiere Pro treats it as a single GPU.

In case multi-GPU (non-SLI or non-CrossFire) configuration is used, it's recommended to disable system or driver-based automated GPU/graphics switching functionality.

The Mercury Playback Engine running on the dedicated GPU isn't used to process everything related to the GPU. The integrated GPU can be used for specific tasks such as encoding/decoding certain codecs and User Interface (UI) activity which can show up while monitoring the GPU usage.

GPU utilization depends on several factors. GPU usage while editing or rendering may or may not be maxed out depending on the number of GPU accelerated effects/features used and the GPU's computational capability. So, a powerful GPU like NVIDIA RTX 2080 may perform faster than NVIDIA GTX 1060 but it may show a lower usage because it is more powerful and may require lesser percentage of hardware resources to process the same information as compared to NVIDIA GTX 1060 or other mid-range GPUs. In case a few GPU accelerated effects are used, then the GPU usage may not be high and it might increase when more GPU accelerated effects are used.

This only applies to VR effects. This message shows up when the GPU does not have sufficient VRAM to process the effect.

Hardware-accelerated Decoding and Encoding

Premiere Pro supports Hardware accelerated encoding to accelerate the encoding (export) performance and reduce the time to export H.264 and H.265 (HEVC) formats. Premiere Pro can also improve the timeline playback performance with Hardware accelerated decoding support for H.264 and H.265 formats.

A GPU with hardware-accelerated encoding and decoding capabilities is required to use these features.
Check from the information if your GPU supports Hardware accelerated Decoding and Encoding.

Apple silicon (M1 and higher) supports hardware-accelerated decoding and encoding of H.264 and H.265 formats, including 10-bit 4:2:2 decoding support. HEVC HLG 4:2:0 10-bit encoding still encodes via software. 

Here are the system requirements for Hardware-accelerated decoding and encoding.

Hardware-accelerated Encoding support

Select H.264/HEVC from the Format drop-down under Export Settings to activate this option. Then under the Video tab, go to Encoding Settings and set the Performance to Hardware Encoding.

Enable Hardware Encoding
Enable Hardware Encoding

Supported codec platforms

Encode: H.264/AVC (8-bit), HEVC 4:2:0 (8-bit and 10-bit) up to 4096x4096. With 10th-generation and later Intel® Core™ processors, HEVC encode support goes up to 8192x8192.

HEVC 4:2:0 10-bit encoding is supported on Intel 9th , Intel 10th, Intel 11th and Intel 12th Generation Intel® Core™ processors. For more information, see the Intel documentation.

Hardware-accelerated Decoding support

Like Hardware-accelerated Encoding, Adobe Premiere Pro also supports Hardware-accelerated Decoding to provide better playback performance while working with the H.264/AVC, HEVC media in the timeline.

Steps to enable Hardware-accelerated Decoding:

  1. Navigate to Preferences > Media

  2. Select Enable hardware accelerated decoding (requires restart).

  3. Restart Adobe Premiere Pro.

Enable Hardware Accelerated Decoding
Enable Hardware Accelerated Decoding

Supported codec platforms

The feature works with MP4 media specifically H.264/AVC and HEVC codecs. Premiere Pro, Adobe Media Encoder, and After Effects version 22.0 and later support HEVC 4:2:2 10-bit Hardware-accelerated Decoding on Intel platforms.

The M2TS(MPEG-2 Transport Stream) is not supported. If using 4K M2TS media, transcoding it to a supported MP4 codec may help in getting better playback performance as the transcoded MP4 media can take advantage of Hardware-accelerated Decoding (Performance gain might not be substantial if transcoding HD M2TS media).

The processing for Hardware-accelerated Decoding on an Integrated Intel® GPU on systems with 8GB or lesser RAM can be limited and might result in the CPU taking over the processing as the Integrated GPU uses the RAM as shared GPU memory. It's recommended to have 16GB of RAM or more for better performance.

For best performance, Adobe recommends the following driver and processor versions:

  • Driver xx.x.100.9126 or later for 11th Generation Intel® Core™ with Iris® Xe Graphics, with UHD Graphics, and with Iris® Xe Max Graphics
  • Driver xx.x.100.9894 or later for 10th Generation Intel® Core™  (see the list below):
    • Intel® Core™ i7-1068NG7 Processor
    • Intel® Core™ i7-1065G7 Processor
    • Intel® Core™ i7-1060G7 Processor
    • Intel® Core™ i5-1035G4 Processor
    • Intel® Core™ i5-1035G7 Processor
    • Intel® Core™ i5-1038NG7 Processor
    • Intel® Core™ i5-1035G1 Processor
    • Intel® Core™ i5-1030G7 Processor
    • Intel® Core™ i5-1030G4 Processor
    • Intel® Core™ i3-1005G1 Processor
    • Intel® Core™ i3-1000G1 Processor
    • Intel® Core™ i3-1000G4 Processor
    • Intel® Pentium® Processor 6805

Difference between Hardware-accelerated Decoding, Mercury Playback Engine (GPU Acceleration), and Hardware-accelerated Encoding

  • Mercury Playback Engine (GPU Accelerated) is a renderer used to process GPU-accelerated effects and enhances playback.
  • Hardware-accelerated Encoding is used to accelerate the encoding performance while exporting the timeline in H.264/AVC and HEVC codecs.
  • Hardware-accelerated Decoding is a process which is used to accelerate decoding H.264/AVC and HEVC media while playing back the timeline. 


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