Old 05-13-2018, 01:50 AM   #1
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Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 7
Default Playback stuttering and cutting out

I've recently resurrected (replaced an old broken hard drive with a brand new 1TB SSD) my iMac. As the title says during playback Reaper keeps stuttering and cutting out. I'm only running Bias FX on a guitar track and a Kontakt choir. Does anyone know whats going on?

I ran the performance meter the fx jump around using anywhere between 20 - 50 percent of the CPU. and the CPU overall keeps maxing out or bouncing around in the 90s. I ran activity monitor, Reaper is taking all the CPU with readings even saying 134 and 120 CPU just to reaper. The RAM use says 1291MB, the higest it's ever gone is 1735MB. Disk read jumps around between 690KB/s to 1.39MB.

Is this iMac just too old, here are it's details;

Early 2008
processor 2.4 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo
Memory 3 GB 667 MHz DDR2 SDRAM
Graphics ATI Radeon HD 2400 XT 128 MB
OS X El Capitan
Version 10.11.4

I can't update past this version of OSX as the computer isn't capable of it. At least that's the notice I get when I try to from the app store.

Reaper has all of it's default settings. (I have played around with the buffer size and whatnot but much to no avail). Even when I playback just the guitar's DI signal and the choir VST, stuttering still happens and the CPU usage is slightly lower but I still can't use Reaper.

Any advice and help would be very much appreciated thank you in advance. Laymen's terms would also be preferable as beyond what I've mentioned myself in this post I really known shockingly little about the workings of computers. Cheers
Lux is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-13-2018, 06:52 AM   #2
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Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 7,442

Older and slower, yes. Faster than many brand new machines aimed at the facialbook browsing customer for perspective.

What latency are you running at? It sounds like you are doing post work (nothing live sound or live performance related) so you should set the block size to 1024 samples.

Are you on top of setting your sample rate and block size? The choices for what control panel to use and all that? Not sample rate converting any audio live in the project? This can be system critical and bring a powerful computer to its knees if left set to "I don't know". Post a screen shot of your Preferences/Audio/Device page settings.

After that I'd consider upping the ram to 6GB. (Even 4GB. 3 is riding the edge.) Oh, and 800MHz ram too! This is cheap to pick up nowadays.

At the end of the day, there will be a few of the heavy weight sampler or MIDI instrument plugins that might be show stoppers for you but this machine would still do a lot of 'meat n' potatoes' audio work.

Last edited by serr; 05-13-2018 at 06:57 AM.
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Old 05-14-2018, 08:49 AM   #3
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Join Date: Mar 2018
Location: Norfolk, UK
Posts: 215

If it's a recent fresh install then the OS may still be settling down indexing files/downloading updates etc.

I'd do as Serr suggested above - make sure your sample rate isn't on anything silly and raise the buffer etc. And that should help.

Core2Duo machine is going to be pushing things, but with those two tracks you shouldn't be struggling as much as you've implied. Something is amiss there, also detail your audio interface and verify which driver you're running as that could be an issue too.
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