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Logic 8 and overload messages on Mac Pro 8 core?
Last post Tue, Jan 13 2009 by julian, 9 replies.
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Posted on Sun, Jan 11 2009 18:04
by Nordkrog
Joined on Sun, Nov 27 2005, Posts 43

Hi

I'm running Logic Pro 8.0.2 on a Mac Book Pro dual 2,4 - 4 mb ram and Im getting overload messages all the time when using just a few VSL VI's and an altiverb.I'm thinking about buying a "new" mac pro (it still says "new mac pro" on the apple site even though the current series has been around for a year..), probably a 8 core 2,8.

Any VSL users runs a Mac Pro 8 core?

Do you get these overload messages all the time?

I'm asking because I'm not sure if it's really because my Mac Book Pro is to slow or if it's simply MAc OS/Logic (or the VI) that has some serious troubles...

Thanks in advance for posting your thoughts on this.

Flemming

Posted on Sun, Jan 11 2009 20:40
by julian
Joined on Fri, Jan 07 2005, UK, Posts 720

Hi Flemming

I can use around 60-70 VIs on my MacPro 8 core 3.2.

A while back I did made some tests:

Set-up:- MacPro 3.2 8 core with 32GB of RAM, OSX 10.5.4, Logic 8.0.2, Vienna Instruments 3208, System Drive 2 disc SATA raid 0, Sample Drive 4 disc SATA raid 0. Logic's buffer was set to 1024 mainly to replicate the best available performance during a mixing session where latency is not an issue.
 
48 instances of Vienna Instruments were loaded into a Logic Session. A 6 note chord sequence with overlaps was inserted and set up by transpositions and different velocities to ensure no sample was "double played" by different tracks. 
 
Results below:
 
At 44.1KHz playback was smooth without any artifacts this equates to a remarkable 576 simultaneous stereo voices (1152 mono)
At 48kHz playback was reduced to 45 tracks, 540 simultaneous stereo voices.
for higher sample rates I used 24 tracks as my basis
At 88.2KHz 24 Tracks played back smoothly with an average cpu loadacross the cores of 50%
At 96KHz 24 Tracks played back smoothly with an average cpu loadacross the cores of 60%
At 176KHz between 20-22 tracks could be sucessfully played back
At 192Khz between 18-20 tracks could be sucessfully played back

Regards

Julian

Posted on Sun, Jan 11 2009 22:08
by Nick K-B
Joined on Thu, Jul 22 2004, Oxford, UK, Posts 48

Hi Flemming

Well Julian's post puts mine rather to shame. I can't manage anywhere near that many tracks. I would love to know what I'm doing wrong.  

I run this set-up and have not had overload messages for a while - used to get core audio overload - but I do not seem to get as many instances of the VI running as I would like. I gather the problem is down to the 32bit processing of OSX and Logic's ability to access RAM. Logic tends to keel over when I have more than two or three woodwind, a percussion and full strings: after that I cross my fingers when I load another VI up.  I'm thinking of getting a PC (argh!) to act as a slave a la Vienna Ensemble Tutorial Video (see my other post: http://community.vsl.co....20561/142104.aspx#142104) unless I can get things to give me the numbers of instruments I want. Those on the tutorial would be a dream for me - but this may just be me.

I hope this helps a little.

Nick

MacbookPro 2012, 16G RAM, Mojave, Logic, & lots of external drives!

To progress forwards, one must simply take a step...
Posted on Sun, Jan 11 2009 22:19
by Nick K-B
Joined on Thu, Jul 22 2004, Oxford, UK, Posts 48

Julian,

How much of your RAM did your little experiment use? I have a humble 14 GB compared with yours, but I never get close to using it before Logic or VI quits on me - I usually have about 5.5-6GB left unused according to VI's performance secction.

Nick

MacbookPro 2012, 16G RAM, Mojave, Logic, & lots of external drives!

To progress forwards, one must simply take a step...
Posted on Sun, Jan 11 2009 23:20
by julian
Joined on Fri, Jan 07 2005, UK, Posts 720

Nick,

The maximum voices test wasn't using much RAM as the VI instances were sharing RAM. However I can generally run both VI and VE up to around 3.25 GB (6.5GB total) without problems.

I have a current session that has the following set up:

Strings 9 VIs average programmes 8 per instance

Woodwind 8 VI's average programmes 7 per instance

Solos, etc 10 VIs average  4 per instance

Choir 2 VIs average  4 per instance

Percussion 1 VE loaded with 8 VIs average programmes 3 per instance

Tuned Percussion 1 VE with 8 VIs average programmes 3 per instance

Brass 1 VE with 9 VIs average programmes 7 per instance

(So total VIs 52)

Logic EXS 24 14 instances

Logic synths etc 8 instances

Omnisphere 3 instances

Play 1x12 channel instance, 1x6 Channel instance

.

12 channels of Space Designer and about 20 channels using linear eq and 8 channels of Metric Halo channel strip.

then a few compressors etc.

And an H264 video running in sync

So a pretty heavy load - there are occassional CPU overloads but it will real time bounce the whole 6 minute song without glitches.

The Play plug-in running storm drum 2 appears to be the biggest hog followed by Omnisphere. The VSL stuff runs really well and reliably.

I think hardware elements helping on my system are processor speed (3.2-8 core) 32 GB of RAM, and upgraded Graphics Card (8800GT) the dedicated sample dirves and having a fast raided boot drive. The VSL load is spread across all 8 cores very well.

Julian

Posted on Sun, Jan 11 2009 23:45
by Nick K-B
Joined on Thu, Jul 22 2004, Oxford, UK, Posts 48

Julian,

That blows what I get out of the water. However, can I clarify somethings with you:

1)  What exactly do you mean in: Strings 9 VIs average programmes 8 per instance by the underlined section?

2)  Do you have your own set-up for each VI or do you use the preset instruments?

3)  Is there a special way to spread the VI / VE / VSL load across the processors or should Logic do that automatically? How do I check it is?

I tried loading a VE with double woodwind, sharing samples and then loaded a second VE to place strings in. As I loaded the violas, VE died and logic followed quickly after.

Any ideas on how to get my system running more smoothly would be blinding. Thanks. (Hitting the hay now so tomorrow is fine!)

Nick

MacbookPro 2012, 16G RAM, Mojave, Logic, & lots of external drives!

To progress forwards, one must simply take a step...
Posted on Mon, Jan 12 2009 00:20
by julian
Joined on Fri, Jan 07 2005, UK, Posts 720
Nick K-B wrote:

Julian,

That blows what I get out of the water. However, can I clarify somethings with you:

1)  What exactly do you mean in: Strings 9 VIs average programmes 8 per instance by the underlined section?

2)  Do you have your own set-up for each VI or do you use the preset instruments?

3)  Is there a special way to spread the VI / VE / VSL load across the processors or should Logic do that automatically? How do I check it is?

I tried loading a VE with double woodwind, sharing samples and then loaded a second VE to place strings in. As I loaded the violas, VE died and logic followed quickly after.

Any ideas on how to get my system running more smoothly would be blinding. Thanks. (Hitting the hay now so tomorrow is fine!)

Nick

1. Number of loaded articulations (sus, stac, legato, dynamic, etc)

2. I set up each instrument as I create a song depending on my requirements for that particular work.

3. Logic or the VSL server does this automatically (you can view realtime system load across the cores in the app "Activity Monitor")

If you are loading matrixes rather than patches these can be very memory intensive however 8 instances of wind should be easily obtainable. What happens if instead of using a VE for the wind you try 8 VIs? If you look on Activity Monitors System Memory Tab you can see the memory being allocated to various processes. Once either VE or VSL server (for VI) goes beyond 3.2GB in the "virtual Memory" column I start getting problems though sometimes I've got up to 3.5GB and it's remained stable. If I remember correctly the unused memory in the VSL readout is Computer system memory and in the current 32 bit Mac versions has no relevence whatsoever to how much accessable RAM remains for VSL samples.

Julian

Posted on Tue, Jan 13 2009 19:55
by Nordkrog
Joined on Sun, Nov 27 2005, Posts 43

Hi Julien and Nick, 

Thanks for your inputs.

Julien, 

Your boot drive/system drive is raid 0: Is it 2 sata drives set up  using Apples disk utility?

Since your RAM usage is limited by VSL (or Apple) to 3.2 - 3.5 GB, is it really worth it to install THAT much ram (32 GB)? 

I'm thinking about buying the 8 core 2,8 ghz and install 2x4 GB RAM giving a total of 10GB. 

I think it's a good idea to upgrade the graphics as you have done, and also run the system from internal raid 0 disks.

I'm currently running all samples, VI-libraries, audio and video (I'm doing film music) from one 1,5 TB Glyph raid 0 drive (2 drives installed) via firewire 800, and I have NEVER had any hiccups or "disk too slow" errors.

Since I will be able to run more VI's on a 8 core than on my Mac Book Pro, I'm thinking of keeping the Glyph drive for samples/VI-libraries, use a G-tech eSATA drive (one single 750 GB drive) for audio and video and use the last two free HD bays for back up.

How does that setup sound? Any thoughts?

I will install an extra PCI firewire card to have dedicated FW busses for audio/video and my audio-interface (Metric Halo ULN-2)

Thanks in advance for any inputs and thoughts

Flemming

Posted on Tue, Jan 13 2009 21:15
by julian
Joined on Fri, Jan 07 2005, UK, Posts 720

Flamming,

My boot drive/system is set up with Apple's disc utility. If you use a 0 Raid for a drive system always have a back up as it is more likely to fail in direct proportion to the number of discs in the raid.

Having a larger amount of RAM than can be fully addressed by the active programmes both leads to greater stability and massively speeds up re-loading samples (for example when switching between songs).

Splitting drives across busses (firewire/e-sata) makes a lot of sense.

A lot of people think it's not worth paying the premium to jump from say 2.8 Ghz to 3.2Ghz saying a 15% speed boost isn't worth the additional cost. However, and I'm not a computer expert so may be wrong!, if there is a base CPU hit to run all the operating systems and basic DAW functions then having extra CPU headroom above this may equate to a far greater performance boost. Also consider the total cost of your music production system then look at the extra cost of a CPU boost in that light.

Regards

Julian

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