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Topic: digital perfomer/Mac G5 processor limits!

  1. #1

    digital perfomer/Mac G5 processor limits!

    I have an on-going problem with hitting processor limits while using Digital Performer 4.12 and a series of plug-ins. The ones I am using are:

    Garritan Personal Orchestra
    MOTU MachFive

    On the piece I am working on right now (which often hits the limts and gives me error messages) I have been experimenting to see if I can bring down usage. It is using:

    1 instance of M5
    3 instance of Pro-53
    2 instances of Personal Orchestra

    Deleting the 3 Pro-53s didn't seem to make much difference, deleting the M5 looked much more hopeful but the best by far was deleting the 2 Personal Orchestras.

    I am working at 24 bit/44.1KHz (I already abandoned 88.2KHz due to processor problems). and I am using, supposedly, one of the fastest personal computers in the world - with 2.5 GHz of RAM installed. But I can't run a few plug-ins without the DP processor window hitting the limits.

    I have already set System Preferences/Energy Saver/Options/Processor Performance to 'Highest'

    Any ideas? - I'm despairing. Looks like I'm going to have to burn down every virtual instrument before I go to next stage - recording audio at 24/88.1.

    Mac G5 dual 2.5 GHz
    2.5 GB RAM

  2. #2

    Re: digital perfomer/Mac G5 processor limits!

    Well I think you don't have to look much further than DP4 itself. I was shocked the other day while running a project that had maxed out my G4 1.25 had used about 5o% CPU on my G5 2.5. I'm not using the same VSTis as you but still..... I was expecting maybe 20%

    Not scientific, but I can't trust DP, what with the processor spike issue, the pieces of GUI floating, disembodied through the app. issue, in DP 4.12 the ridiculously slow scrolling behavior, glacial saves, unresponsiveness in general...

    I could go on but I won't. Motu still hasn't figured out OSX IMO and it'll be a while longer before they do. I upgraded to DP 4.5 and expected to use it, but given the continuing problems with performance and compatability with third party plugs I'm going to shelve it and move over to Logic7 fulltime. (from frying pan to fire)

    I almost didn't send this 'cause it might not be too helpful, but then again maybe it will be. I have no idea why your GPO is eating so much CPU. From my understanding CPU is not the issue, it's disk speed and RAM (which you have)

    Good Luck!
    Michael Telle
    Bay Area

  3. #3

    Re: digital perfomer/Mac G5 processor limits!

    It sounds like the G5 is giving you a little more than twice as much as the G4, so I'm not sure there's a problem. To me that doesn't sound disappointing at all, and it doesn't even take into account how much more memory you can access.

    I've been upgrading Macs every couple of years since the mid-'80s, and I can't think of any time a new machine has doubled the power.

    Sorry to sound unsympathetic.

  4. #4

    Re: digital perfomer/Mac G5 processor limits!

    That's OK Nick, I wasn't really looking for sympathy anyway, my point is simply that DP underperforms in OSX.

    But I think it's not unreasonable to expect more than double the power from a G4 1.25 to a G5/2.5. All the specs would lead us to believe that to be the case, no?

    Perhaps it's all hype and theoretical limits, but on paper the G5 looks to be maybe 3-4 times the machine. Maybe someone can chime in with the numbers and what they mean in the real world.

    At any rate I'll be able to see exactly what's up, as my G4 is still in service and I'll have Gold loaded on both machines. Logic/ 10.3..7


    edit; I decided to load the G5 up in Logic7 with Gold just to do an informal test. I played a single line on the CBS and then copied the part to 63 other instruments, transposing when needed just to get some sustained voices going. So 64 instruments total, dunno how many voices but obviously a lot more. Played back no problem, processor maybe 1/2 (pretty hard to read- keeps changing) Oddly enough the percentage of the load changed from side to side on the meter. I have no clue about that.

    Anyway, I'm pretty pleased with that performance. Looks like I could've loaded another 30-40 instruments without topping out but that's just a guess. If anyone's interested I could pursue it more. G5/2.5/3.5GB/10.3.7
    Logic buffer 256/24bt. EWQLSO streaming from it's own disk. (Seagate 7200 rpm) DFD 192/384
    Michael Telle
    Bay Area

  5. #5

    Re: digital perfomer/Mac G5 processor limits!

    Thanks Guys - just added more RAM which was recommended by several people including MOTU - I now have 5.5GB which I would hope is more than enough. So far P.O seems to be a bit happier (but it's too early to say) at 24 bit/44.1 KHz but at 24bit/88.2 it's still horendous - does anyone work with P.O at 88.2 or 96K - if so, how?

  6. #6

    Re: digital perfomer/Mac G5 processor limits!


    Which 3rd party plugs, specifically are you referring to having compatability issues?? I'm running DP 4.5 on the very same machine (G5 2.5/5 G RAM) and have to say that it's a far cry from what I read in your posts. I've been successful with the 3 Spectrasonics VI's, pretty much all the NI plugs, a slew of Kontakt VI's, playback oriented Machfive instances, as well as odles of processing plugs (Waves, UAD, etc). I've attempted to push the machine into the ground with DP, and have been more than pleased with 4.5's performance, side by side with Logic 7.

    I'll admit that DP certainly isn't without its issues...BUT Logic 7 isn't some sort of miracle fix. I'm sure you'll find out for yourself, though, as a simple polyphony test on a number of VI's certainly isn't a way to truly benchmark a program's performance, imho.

    With all due respect, I've not experienced the same level of frustration. That said, I've been pro-active to make sure the machine is optimized to run DP, and other audio apps.

    Now, if you're doing hardcore sample importing and editting on Machfive, I can give you a laundry list of b*tches!

  7. #7

    Re: digital perfomer/Mac G5 processor limits!

    From what I have been reading in a lot of forums, the Apple just seems to work better with Sequencer, and Audio programs....Once you start dabbling in Sample based programs, it appears that going to a PC is the way to go ....I'm a Mac guy from WAY back ( yeah I"m a fossil ) but have had a lot more luck with PC's ( just started using them ) as far as how much more use I get out of them for sample based programs.... For those who are running comfortably with the Mac, my hat is off to you, but there seem's to be many more who do not have the luxury of running so well and not getting the performance that one would expect from their computers.... I'm of the belief that I can have a PC that is fast and tricked out, with 2 gig's of ram AND a sound card with midi ports, or virtual midi ports , that will run MANY more instances of material from ANY given sample based program, for what it would cost me to buy an inexpensive Mac that wouldn't get out of it's own way ....Basically you can build or have built 2 complete PC's with all the bells' and whistles, for what it would cost you to outfit a 2.5 gig Dual Proc. Mac with 3 gigs of ram ...The only program that I have seen ANY significant increase in productivity with the Dual Processor Mac's is Photoshop !!.....I'm not saying this to bad mouth the Apple products, as I've been using them for years, but products and times are changing .... The proper tool for the proper job .....Jim
    PS.....This is just my opinion for what it's worth ...

  8. #8

    Re: digital perfomer/Mac G5 processor limits!


    Very interesting!!

    I'm reading your post at an interesting time for me as I'm considering upgrading my G4/450 dual to the latest G5, mainly so I can use VST plugs in DP 4.5 (Currently I run DP 3.0: VERY STABLE!, and external VST's in either Forte or VStack on PCs).

    Hard to decide: many say go for it, others warn of DP 4.5 issues and now it seems you're saying the G5 won't nearly match the power of the external PC. However, Vstack and Forte don't really handle tempo info when it comes to syncing grooves in stuff like Intakt. Plus, it'd be nice to use the drag and drop features of Stylus RMX when that plug is used on the same machine as the host sequencer.

  9. #9

    Re: digital perfomer/Mac G5 processor limits!

    All this speculation is nice but could you give us a DETAILED breakdown of your system config

    DP2.5 5.5GB Ram is not enuff info.

    I Live in DP 4.5 and run a bunch of stuff on my MUCH slower Dualie before problems. Yes logic is More efficient than DP in OS X but what you are describing makes me dig much deeper.

    So make it VERY detailed.


  10. #10

    Re: digital perfomer/Mac G5 processor limits!


    My suggestion would be to wait just a bit longer to upgrade.
    DP 4.5/4.52 is not nearly as stable as earlier versions and it does not play nicely with spectrasonics stuff at the moment.
    Too many crashes per day and when you hit "save" on big projects it can take as long as 45 seconds just to save.
    Huge drag.
    There are just lots of niggling little bugs that slow you down or cause a crash.
    Waves plugs don't remember their settings when re-opening a project.
    Kontakt way underperforms at the moment and loads REALLY sllllooowww. (same for ewqlso)
    RMX has MANY issues with DP.
    etc etc

    I would bet that the next updates address these issues but it seems slow in coming at the moment.

    Anyone working on serious deadlines should wait a minute. Those of us who made the jump already will send reports back from the bleeding edge!

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