I. NeatVideo - "TEST"
I've been doing a lot of testing with the now famous NeatVideo plugin for Sony Vegas. It's a plugin that removes grain, and I gotta say that this is something well worth the $50. It's just an immense help to anybody filming in dark conditions!
Now... I've been using it for months now, and after numerous tests, I figured it's be neat (NPI) to do a side by side video that shows how well NeatVideo does its job. Before you watch my quick showcase, I will first say that the footage was filmed on the XH-A1 in a room illuminated by the morning sunlight (shutter speed 100, f2.8). This was so it would guarantee spots that showed visible grain. Looking at the footage right off the tape, without NeatVideo the grain was very visible. But after putting on NeatVideo, the footage looked a lot more clean.
Youtube's quality downgrade is retarded, so I'm not sure you can even notice the difference between the two unless you come right up to your screen and inspect the small details. But I'm also supplying the actual video file HERE so that you can have the actual rendered .wmv and see it for yourself. You can watch the test below, but I'd highly recommend downloading the actual file (again, HERE).
II. NeatVideo - "CPU usage"
Next, I'd like to explain how NeatVideo does something I'd never expect. See, when rendering a file out in Sony Vegas, your CPU usage shoots up to 99-100%. It pushes your cores to their limit, and it doesn't stop until your video is done rendering. When I learned this, I freaked. Your CPU can't be running that high for so long until it decides to explode on you one day. Not only that, but since your CPU is running at its full capacity throughout, the temperature of your CPU escalates to molten lava proportions. I've measured the temeratures using Speedfan.
When rendering a normal file in Vegas (using my own preset), I'd say my cores range between 65-75 degrees Celsius. That's hot. Very hot. This is why I keep a fan directly underneath my laptop blowing air straight up so that there's no shortage of cool air suckage.
But... when rendering footage using the NeatVideo plugin, my temperatures range from 50-65 degrees Celsius. Still hot, but that's an extravagant decrease! Not only that, but my CPU usage ranges from 40-55%, not 100%. The render times are slightly longer, but the footage is still adhering to my personal preset. And more interestingly, the temp decrease occurs even when the NeatVideo plugin isn't even turned on. All I have to do is drag the plugin onto the footage, and leave it off. I don't know why it does, but it (a) keeps your laptop at a fairly acceptable temperature and (b) keeps your CPU on cruise control during rendering!
All in all, I'd say if you're using Sony Vegas and in fear of overheating your computer or pushing your CPU too hard, then download the damn plugin. Not only is it a pillow for your machine, but it's a damn good plugin that sexy's up your footage.