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Topic: GPO in ProTools performance

  1. #1

    GPO in ProTools performance


    I\'ve installed Garritan Personal Orchestra on my eMac yesterday, and am dissapointed in the performance.
    It\'s a 1Ghz G4 eMac with 640 MB RAM running 10.3.3 - speedwise not exactly a Ferrari, but not a Fiat 600 either. ProTools is 6.4 LE.

    I\'ve loaded six patches into one multi (bass-cello-violas-violins1-violins2, all lush & dry), and imported a downtempo midifile, with on average 5 notes per track per bar, all legato & slow moving (on average half a bar per note).
    I\'ve made sure no other controllers or Sysex are in the miditracks.

    I barely manage to have three of the five loaded patches to play together (I disconnected the others from the GPO midi input, but let them stay in RAM), before running into the dreaded \'cpu power\' error.
    I\'ve checked all the usual suspects from the forum (journaling - repair permissions etc...), nothing wrong there.

    First question : How many instruments am I supposed to be able to play with my Mac specification ?
    Q2 : any suggestions ?



  2. #2

    Re: GPO in ProTools performance

    I’m running ProTools on the PC side, so you can take my advice for what it’s worth (free and worth every penny) I don’t know how it affects the Mac side but I’ve heard reports that many people have experienced a performance hit with the new 6.4 version of the software. I have also noticed that under certain circumstances that the MIDI performance in ProTools when using GPO as an RTAS plugin leaves something to be desired. You mention that you have 638 MB of ram. You probably need at least a GB (to start) and you are still going to run into limitations concerning what instruments you may load simultaneously. GPO is great for adding a few tracks within ProTools but beyond that there are several issues that start to rear their head. I’ve found that if you wish to do anything besides fairly rudimentary pieces with GPO/ProTools that the best bet is to dedicate a separate machine to GPO. I built an AMD 2500+ w/ 2 gig of memory for a little over $600 and I’m able to load just about any combination of instruments you can imagine with virtually no performance issues. It is also very convenient when loading different sessions. When running ProTools with GPO RTAS plugins you must completely reload into memory all of the instruments used in that session, (even if the instruments are identical to the previous session.) If you are dealing with multiple complex sessions this quickly becomes an issue of wasted time.

  3. #3

    Re: GPO in ProTools performance

    Thanks Bousley,

    you mention you need a gig of RAM at least, but if you\'re only loading - say - 120 MB of instruments, you still need that amount for GPO to run comfortably ?



  4. #4

    Re: GPO in ProTools performance


    Unfortunately it seems a lot of mac users (myself included) have found the performance of GPO to be disappointing. The kontakt player for mac obviously isn\'t very optimised at the moment, because my celeron 1.8Ghz PC with 512mb _comfortably_ outperforms my 1GHz powerbook with 1.25gb ram - which isn\'t the case using other soft instruments. There was talk of a new beta version in testing that may improve matters, but news of that has gone suspiciously quiet!!

    Having said that, I can usually get between 10-20 patches before I max out the cpu, so you should probably be doing a bit better than you are. However, I use Logic Express and Sibelius - so it could be a protools issue. I think most mac users find they run out of cpu before they run out of ram with gpo.

    What sample rate are you using? The garritan site suggests using anything other than 44.1Khz could cause trouble - thought I don\'t have any direct experience of this. Also, are you using the \'wet\' patches? The reverb added by the kontakt player on these could be eating cpu.

    Hopefully some Protools users can be a bit more helpful - aside from that, I\'m afraid you might have to join the mac users here crossing their fingers for an improved update asap!

    Good luck,

  5. #5

    Re: GPO in ProTools performance

    Hi Chris,

    10-20 patches is much much better than 3...
    and you\'re right - this is much more a CPU than a RAM issue.
    Tried 24 and 16 bit - all @ 44.1K - no difference. All \'dry\' patches, no more than 80 MB of samples.

    Could be a ProTools issue - I\'ve had a similar problem back under OS9 with the MBox - couldn\'t even run a single basic EQ without running into \'cpu holding of USB audio\' error - turned out it was a silly TCP/IP setting causing the trouble.

    Interestingly, I\'ve also just acquired the Native Instruments Komplete collection, which contains the full version of the Kompakt sampler - I tried the same session with their version of multi-strings patches & ran into the same trouble.

    So it\'s not Garritan per se, but the Kontakt player behind it that\'s the CPU hog - how come else that I can ReWire Reason effortlesly into ProTools with a truckload of high end NN-XT samplers running ?

    If a G4 1Ghz is enough only to run a couple of patches, they should say so & not merely state \'recommended (not even minimum !) requirements : G4 733 Mhz\' on the back of the cd-box, which is simply not true.


  6. #6

    Re: GPO in ProTools performance

    The only other thing worth mentioning is that you should be using Aux tracks rather than audio tracks when you use GPO as an insert in Pro Tools.

    I have a Dual G4 1.25 with 1.5 gig of ram and have had very mediocre performance. Don\'t seem to be able to get more than about 2 GPO instances for a total of 14 voices. (can\'t even begin to use the reverb.) It kind of cracks me up when the first thing people say is \"We\'ll don\'t use the wet voices!\" Fine, but what good is it if you can\'t (or shouldn\'t) use them.

    Yesterday I tried a piece with 3 intances and PT kept quitting. I have never had any program cause PT to quit like that in my 6 months with this set up, and I use a lot of plugs and soft synths, so there definitely is an issue with Kontakt and PT.

    I think it is fair to say that GPO is not yet fully developed for the MAC.

    I hope this new update fixes things, but as someone mentioned earlier, there was quite a bit of talk about it a week or so ago, but things have gone very quiet. Not good!

  7. #7

    Re: GPO in ProTools performance

    Hi Stef,

    I\'m sure you should get more than 3 patches. What buffer size are you using - I\'ve found that 512 samples is the minimum I can use (10ms latency) - going down to 256 is no go. Do you have any other sequencing software you can test gpo with to rule out protools? Also, maybe you could try it with the built-in audio on the emac in case it\'s a driver issue with the mbox again?

    As you say, it seems to be a kontakt/komptakt issue. Having said that, I think GPO does use a lot of processing in order to produce a good sound with relatively few samples.

    I agree totally about the minimum specs - I started a thread on the subject a month or so ago. Especially as my \'minimum spec\' PC can run 24+ patches at about 50% cpu usage.

    Gary Garritan seems very keen to help though, so hopefully he\'s putting pressure on Native Instruments to sort it out - you might try looking in their forums in case there\'s a known issue with protools.


  8. #8

    Re: GPO in ProTools performance

    Just browsed the Digi userforum - boy, this doesn\'t look well at all. (Hi Dubaifox - saw you there too...)
    There\'s a guy with a dual 1,25 Ghz G4 doing worse than me in PT....who gets a 25+ patch count when he uses Logic on the same machine.
    I really don\'t like Logic - but even if I did, I\'m not going to switch hosts (& spend more money) simply because a plugin doesn\'t do what it\'s supposed to do.

    As for hw buffer : 512 gives me the \'cpu power holding off USB audio\', 1024 gives me the \'cpu tasks conflicting - reduce hw buffer\' error & 256 is not working.
    All in \'aux input\' only, not in audio tracks.

    Maybe we should be complaining on the NI site - that\'s were the trouble lies & it\'s \'oh so quiet\' there....


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