Hi David. Beamr Transcoder VOD is based on CPU optimized software, and at this time there is no GPU compute code (CUDA, OpenCL, etc.), so a faster GPU won’t provide a benefit. You’ll need adequate RAM memory, but beyond adequate you won’t get any speed-up. Faster disks (or better yet, SSDs) will generally help you, but this depends on the settings you’re using. If you’re using slower, higher quality encode speeds, disk I/O is less likely to become a performance bottleneck. The best thing you can do for system performance is to run on a system with more overall CPU compute power (more CPU cores, and/or better CPU cores, such as the latest generation Intel or AMD processors). Turning off hyperthreading (usually done in your BIOS) may also help.
2 pass encoding is a way of improving bit rate control. Normally, this is done to insure that quality doesn’t fluctuate, while also trying to hit an overall average bit rate target. If the target bit rate is important to you, 2 pass rate control is a great option. Beamr’s first pass is accelerated, and so 2 pass encoding doesn’t take much more time than 1 pass encoding with otherwise identical settings.