• Register
  • Help
Results 1 to 10 of 10

Topic: Mac crackle and pop revisited

Share/Bookmark
  1. #1

    Mac crackle and pop revisited

    Sorry posted in General while it should be here.

    I was just wondering how everyone who had this problem is making out.
    It is still a problem for me and I would like it fixed and so this thread...

    Talking from a G5 1.6 3MB Ram p.o.v.

    As someone way back pointed out -- the clipping is no longer the problem it's become a rhythmic problem. Mostly (but not fully) it comes down to not being able to have percussion swells e.g. cymbal and timp. rolling small then swelling out to a crash of gong. This alone would not be a problem but with the orchestra participating it results in these ENORMOUS! stumbles. Sometimes they are almost emotive (but not quite).

    After much tinkering and experimenting -- if I eliminate the cym roll and have the timp tap out at the sixteenth -- the tempo is Q=50 -- not fast at all--- it gets through OK. Not the end of the world but on the other hand if one wished to convey the end of the world defintely disappointing.


    There's more but I await kevetching participants.

    Jerry

  2. #2

    Re: Mac crackle and pop revisited

    some thoughts:

    -check your Energy Saver preferences - Options Tab - Processor Performance should be set to "Highest"

    -more info about your host would be helpful...DP4? Logic? GPO Studio?

    -audio buffer size has a tremendous effect on polyphony...find a trade-off between latency and performance that you can live with.

    -reduce polyphony on timps, cymbals and such to 16 voices or as little as will sound smooth and natural...it's all those ringing voices that are killing you.

    -render or 'freeze' your high-polyphony tracks separately to save CPU

    -You've got Plenty 'O RAM, so by all means turn off DFD if you have it enabled...this will squeeze out a bit more oomph from your CPU.

    hope that helps

    Brian

  3. #3

    Re: Mac crackle and pop revisited

    What sequencer or notation software(s) are you using?

  4. #4

    Re: Mac crackle and pop revisited

    Quote Originally Posted by bmonroney
    some thoughts:

    -check your Energy Saver preferences - Options Tab - Processor Performance should be set to "Highest"

    -more info about your host would be helpful...DP4? Logic? GPO Studio?

    -audio buffer size has a tremendous effect on polyphony...find a trade-off between latency and performance that you can live with.

    -reduce polyphony on timps, cymbals and such to 16 voices or as little as will sound smooth and natural...it's all those ringing voices that are killing you.

    -render or 'freeze' your high-polyphony tracks separately to save CPU

    -You've got Plenty 'O RAM, so by all means turn off DFD if you have it enabled...this will squeeze out a bit more oomph from your CPU.

    hope that helps

    Brian
    Sorry and thanks.

    I'm on Finale 2005 and use GPO studio.

    I've done most of the things above -- freeze is not possible within Finale.
    I am unfamilar with "DFD". Whatzit?

    Polyphony is something I've been meaning to discuss -- i strip it down wherever possible but I find the strings get pale with too much reduction -- so at this point i have my vln I at 18 and reduce II's et al from that number.

    The problem i have with some suggestions (not necessarily the ones above) is it reduces the quality of the sound -- these problems I have are at specific points in the score and I'm loath to reduce listening quality overall in order remedy what amounts to 2% of the total time.

    Audio buffer is maxed out -- this well down the food chain from 'real time' requirements.

    Thanks again

    Jerry

  5. #5

    Re: Mac crackle and pop revisited

    The best solution is to Record to File each section separately. i.e. strings, percussion, brass, etc... Then put them together in a DAW program. I have one that was a free download, but I can't remember the name and I am at work.... sorry! When you put the tracks together, there will be some syncing problems to work out.
    I reduce the strings to 6 note polyphony each without too much noticeable loss of quality, but your ear may be pickier than mine. My iMac is really bad with the crackles and i have no choice. When it is crackling, it does drop audio which is what cause the tempo flucuations when recorded to file.
    While composing you have two options if you want to hear the whole thing. In GPO, reduce the bit rate by half. The sounds will be of much lower quality, but at least you can hear the whole score. The other option is to simply use Finale's Soundfont.

    Hope this helps....
    Jess Hendricks
    DMA Student and Teaching Asst in Music Theory/ Composition at the University of Miami
    Personal Website

  6. #6

    Re: Mac crackle and pop revisited

    DFD - Native Instruments' name for streaming samples from disk (Direct From Disk). DFD is great for big instruments with long decays like pianos, and it's a way to load more instruments on a system with limited RAM, but it increases the load on the CPU slightly, and GPO is designed to be RAM-based....so I say turn DFD off for GPO. It's in the Options of the Kontakt Player (assuming you have the update).

    You might consider using quicktime sounds for timpani or cymbals or other polyphony-eating sounds while working on a score...it won't sound good but it'll be a lot easier on your CPU load. the frustrating thing with Finale Mac is the 4-port limitation for MIDI outputs, so you might not be able to make this work.

    Jess' suggestion regarding sample-rate reduction while working is a great one since you're using GPO studio. If are trying to record a finished product this won't help, but I'd advise doing that within an environment where you can record instrument sections separately and then mix them together with a nice Impulse Reverb (DP, Logic, Live, Tracktion, SX, Nuendo, etc.)

    Brian

  7. #7

    Re: Mac crackle and pop revisited

    To get around the 4-port limitation on Finale is easy: Select 1 studio instance, then hold down shift to add another to the same menu. This will allow all 8 GPO instances to be used.
    Jess Hendricks
    DMA Student and Teaching Asst in Music Theory/ Composition at the University of Miami
    Personal Website

  8. #8

    Re: Mac crackle and pop revisited

    Hi Jerry -

    I haven't used Finale much for a few years(I switched to Sibelius) but I would think that some problems would be common to or have equivalents in any notation software. If all you're using is Finale/GPO, then there should be fairly low strain on your computer's resources. The Sibelius tech guys clued me to the fact that notation softwares are essentially graphics apps and consume alot of (GHz & RAM)resources just generating images.

    In Sibelius you can minimize the resource drain by doing two things:

    1) turning off the paper and background textures(you're simplifying the graphics processing by getting rid off the fancy stuff) and
    2) turning off "smoothing" (whatever the hell that is)

    I don't remember what(if any) the options are in Finale, but there must be some equivalents.

    Also, Sibelius now comes loaded with Kontakt Silver, which only adds to the burden, and the sounds are crappy anyway especially when stood beside GPO. I don't know what sort of player/sounds Finale comes with - and I'm not that saavy about these things - but I would think that if you can turn it off or eliminate it, it would also be helpful. When I set up my new system I got better GPO playback after I installed Sibelius without Kontakt Silver.

    When I did these things(on an iMac G5 1.8GHz/2GIGS RAM) it became unnecessary to do fixes that reduced quality, like lowering sample rate etc. I did max the audio buffer and in system preferences/energy saver/options set processor performance to maximum. These things made a big difference in performance.

    As to the DFD option I would think it would only increase the load on your cpu and you have plenty (an enviable amount) of RAM for GPO. It seems alot of it is a matter of minimizing the load on your computer's resources. and in general it seems better to resist the temptation to add things to the mix in an effort to fix things. Initially I was going to try DFD but people 'in the know' advised against it and anyway it seems like the simpler you can keep things the better.

    I realize we're talking different softwares here(Sibelius/Finale) but it'd be interesting to know what similarities/equivalents there are in fixing problems.

    I was talking to a friend last night(whose system is very close to yours) and we were laughing about how our relatively 'new' computers are just barely able to do all of this and how it would have so much smarter to wait for the faster cpu's. Things are changing so fast. Oh well. At least there's GPO.

    Good luck and happy new year

  9. #9

    Re: Mac crackle and pop revisited

    Quote Originally Posted by pgurnee
    I was talking to a friend last night(whose system is very close to yours) and we were laughing about how our relatively 'new' computers are just barely able to do all of this and how it would have so much smarter to wait for the faster cpu's. Things are changing so fast. Oh well. At least there's GPO.
    Unfortunately, I think for best performance, NI's sampler engines feed on raw clock speed, on either side of the Mac/Win divide. I also don't think that NI optimises their code as much for PPC processors, so despite that G5 of yours with its tremendous memory bandwidth, 1.6 or 1.8 GHz is just not going to deliver the performance of a P4 2.8-3.2GHz which is the norm these days on the dark side... That's why I have a separate Shuttle XPC with GPO on it, and DP4 running smoothly on my ancient 3-year-old dual-800 G4.

    Quote Originally Posted by pgurnee
    To get around the 4-port limitation on Finale is easy: Select 1 studio instance, then hold down shift to add another to the same menu. This will allow all 8 GPO instances to be used.
    This is great advice, I just stopped at the 4 ports available in the MIDI setup window and figured that was it, but after futzing around with the Instrument setup window in Finale 2005, it looks like you can indeed access as many MIDI ports as you want.

    I wonder if it makes any difference if you turn off "Internal Speaker Playback" from Finale's MIDI menu, even if you aren't using it...

    Brian

  10. #10

    Re: Mac crackle and pop revisited

    I might be about to get the Power mac G5 1.8ghz single processor. I was curious to see how everyone is doing that might have this system. I am getting a lot out of my Powerbook G4 867mhz and my iMac 1ghz G4 by various tricks. I want to be able to load a full orchestra. I imagine with the G5 1.8ghz I can at least lower the polyphony and make sure energy save is on the highest setting and get something out of it. Does anyone have this system? I am going to get it with 1.25 GB of memory. That should meet GPO's requirement.

    If no one else has this system I will post my results.... if I get it(gotta rearrange the budget a bit)!
    Jess Hendricks
    DMA Student and Teaching Asst in Music Theory/ Composition at the University of Miami
    Personal Website

Go Back to forum

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •