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Old 05-04-2010, 11:47 PM   #1
geo242
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Default OSX Reaper GUI slower than Windows 7?

I recently switched from a PC to MacBook Pro for all my music production. One of the first things I noticed after opening an existing project on the Mac is that the Reaper GUI doesn't respond as quickly as when running in Windows (compared to my previous machine). So, I installed Windows 7 (64bit) on the MacBook via boot camp to really test this apples to apples (no pun intended). I thought maybe the graphics hardware in the Mac might not have been up to the task of running my 24" external monitor at 1920x1080 in addition to the laptop screen and expected the performance in Windows to be relatively the same as in OSX. But, to my amazement, this exact setup in Windows 7 while running an identical project performed much better than on OSX. (Keep in mind, I am only referring to the responsiveness of the GUI for things like scrolling and zooming the project window.)

All the other parts of Reaper are performing well for me on both Mac and Windows, but this laggy interface makes it feel really clunky and makes me want to go back to Windows, even though I really want it to work on the Mac. Also, it doesn't seem to make any difference when using either the 32bit or 64bit versions of Reaper in either operating system.

System Specs:
2007 MacBook Pro
2.2ghz Core 2 Duo
4GB 800mhz ram
320Gb 7200rpm HD
Nvidia GeForce 8600M GT 128MB
OSX 10.6.3

I searched the forums for others with the same issue, but couldn't find anything useful.

Is this a known issue? Are my expectations too high for the Mac software? Does anyone else experience this?
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Old 05-05-2010, 12:09 AM   #2
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Reaper OSX isn't quite as far along as in Windows. Perhaps code optimization has been ignored a little bit to try and get Reaper OSX up to par with Windows as far as capabilities and features go but not so much on the performance side of things. I'm just thinking out loud, i'm likely wrong.
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Old 05-05-2010, 12:13 AM   #3
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I felt the same when running Reaper on my Macbook Pro (unibody intel)

It's just not as responsive as Reaper in Windows. I thought it was just the Mac OS graphics issue though.
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Old 05-05-2010, 12:21 AM   #4
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it could be the windowing environment in OSX which is X.org i believe
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Old 05-05-2010, 12:48 AM   #5
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Yep, same here. I run both windows xp and mac os x tiger on a mac pro and I have the same issue. Windows is snappier for sure.
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Old 05-05-2010, 12:55 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zoso2 View Post
... i believe
afaik, reaper osx is running swell. if there were a
bug with it, i'd hope you guys could whittle it down.
(i'll bee hear all weak, try the reafir!)
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Old 05-05-2010, 03:16 AM   #7
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This isn't a Reaper issue, you'll find it with any cross platform App.The fact of the matter is OSX is a 'heavy' OS when it comes to graphic responsiveness.In fact reaper is pretty good in this dept,cubase 5 was awful on OSX compared to windows. I think it's better now with snow leopard but still not as good as windows.

This along with poor low latency performance is what's kept me away from OSX as my DAW OS for the last few years combined with the fact that win x64 is a lot further down the line too.



MC
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Old 05-05-2010, 06:53 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by norbury brook View Post
This isn't a Reaper issue, you'll find it with any cross platform App.The fact of the matter is OSX is a 'heavy' OS when it comes to graphic responsiveness.In fact reaper is pretty good in this dept,cubase 5 was awful on OSX compared to windows. I think it's better now with snow leopard but still not as good as windows.

This along with poor low latency performance is what's kept me away from OSX as my DAW OS for the last few years combined with the fact that win x64 is a lot further down the line too.



MC
Ah thanks. I take it there are no tweaks in osx to make it less graphic intensive...
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Old 05-06-2010, 02:52 AM   #9
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You can do some tweaks, but it won't make that much difference. http://www.jakeludington.com/ask_jak...recording.html
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Old 05-06-2010, 04:10 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bosjanet View Post
You can do some tweaks, but it won't make that much difference. http://www.jakeludington.com/ask_jak...recording.html
Thanks, I figured there wasn't much you could do about it. I'll just stick to xp.
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Old 05-06-2010, 12:58 PM   #11
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I looked through the issue tracker at all the OSX related issues and didn't see anything that applies to this. Can someone else verify this?

I think an issue should be opened that addresses this issue specifically due to the fact that it seems most OSX users experience this same slowness. Any opposed?
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Old 05-08-2010, 04:07 AM   #12
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i am in favor of opengl support; that could (in theory) speed-up drawing on all systems.

i understand that cockos have prototyped reaper using opengl, but they are obviously is not ready
to implement it, or it would be done. i observe that other daws have implemented gl on the osx
side, and it has also introduced bugs which can seem to outweigh any minor improvement i've
noticed; i would be willing to bet that cockos' implementation will bring significant gains, or
why bother? and this is to me, obviously not simple to achieve. so no pressure needed there, imo.

actually if i had to make a criticism, it would be that lice seems to draw metering perfectly
even when audio is stuttering, but maybe that is just because lice works exceptionally well ?

... oh, and lately i find peaks do not always finish drawing... there is a workaround for it. a bit o.t. here, imo.
but if anyone can find a way to repro that bug, every little fix helps the overall workflow.

Last edited by cerberus; 05-08-2010 at 04:12 AM.
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Old 05-09-2010, 07:33 AM   #13
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It would be good to both devs and users alike to at least notice where any (remaining) differences in performance are between the Windows and OS X builds (and, in a similar vein, 32 vs 64 bit builds), apart from any currently missing features or bugs that are platform-specific.

Another example of something like this (without meaning to hijack the thread, I want to point out the more general pattern): when opening the plugin folder for the first time after starting Reaper, on OS X it takes *much* longer to display the full list of plugs. I'd guess that some caching routines in the Windows builds are missing in the OS X ones, or that there is a similar explanation on the OS level as for the issue described in the OP.

(Side note: I have not yet *fairly* compared Reaper's Windows vs. OS X builds on my MBP yet, as I have not installed Boot Camp but just occasionally run it under WINE; while I do have experience in running builds for both architectures on my generic desktop multi-booting both Windows XP and hackint0sh OS X 10.5.4, i.e. both are not really state-of-the-art but suffice in practice for most purposes).
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Old 05-09-2010, 04:39 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Banned View Post
when opening the plugin folder for the first time after starting Reaper, on OS X it takes *much* longer to display the full list of plugs. I'd guess that some caching routines in the Windows builds are missing in the OS X ones, or that there is a similar explanation on the OS level as for the issue described in the OP.
it would seem to be populating the plug-in lists at these times...
i'd suggest that anyone with this complaint should trash their a.u. folder.
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Old 05-09-2010, 06:51 PM   #15
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the only thing I want to see is the FX window open when I click it... instead of 10 seconds later...
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Old 05-10-2010, 07:36 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cerberus View Post
it would seem to be populating the plug-in lists at these times...
i'd suggest that anyone with this complaint should trash their a.u. folder.
Hmm, no. I need those for other non-VST hosts (e.g. Logic, Numerology).
Then I would much prefer some customizable preferences/settings for AU plugins, much like there are for DX on the Windows builds.
Maybe just one for "[x] Do not use AU plugins" ?
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Old 05-13-2010, 02:46 PM   #17
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Quote:
I looked through the issue tracker at all the OSX related issues and didn't see anything that applies to this. Can someone else verify this?

I think an issue should be opened that addresses this issue specifically due to the fact that it seems most OSX users experience this same slowness. Any opposed?
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I can verify that. Been on mac since 93 and I´ve never used a pc for musicproduction. On a mac Reaper is indeed very sloggish compared to Logic, so
I´ll second that an issue should be opened to check out/solve this matter.
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Old 05-13-2010, 04:16 PM   #18
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Issue created: http://forum.cockos.com/project.php?issueid=2477

Thanks to everyone who has contributed their feedback so far. Please support this issue by verifying that you have noticed this issue. Maybe we can light a fire under the devs to address this.
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Old 05-14-2010, 02:56 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pixeltarian View Post
the only thing I want to see is the FX window open when I click it... instead of 10 seconds later...
I noticed this, but it only happens the first time the FX window is opened, after starting Reaper.
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Old 05-14-2010, 10:35 AM   #20
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Some mouse stuff.

The zooming is different is OSX, the last time I checked a few weeks ago.

When you use the mouse-wheel zoom and an x2 modifier, combine them in to an action and assign that to the mouse wheel, as I do in this video, the modifier x2 means that it zooms in twice the amount as before in one step.

Say you zoom from view A to view C, which is two zoom steps away. If you use single zoom steps and not the mouse modifier, you also get a view B which is between A and C zoom-wise.

The mouse modifier has you jumping directly to view C from view A. In OSX this is not the case. It renders the inbetweener view B as well. This makes it appear smoother, but also a lot slower.

The end result is that the machine is slower than the user.
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Old 05-15-2010, 05:25 AM   #21
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yeah the mouse issues only got fixed recently but still isn't the best (scrolling on the piano roll vertically in midi window). I would also like to comment on the difference between running mac and pc versions. This is why I'm buying a PC to run reaper.
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Old 05-15-2010, 10:47 AM   #22
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get a pc.
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Old 05-15-2010, 02:13 PM   #23
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get a pc.
rather shoot myself
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Old 05-15-2010, 04:26 PM   #24
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lets not start guys. Peace.
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Old 05-16-2010, 09:13 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by airon View Post
Some mouse stuff.

The zooming is different is OSX, the last time I checked a few weeks ago.

When you use the mouse-wheel zoom and an x2 modifier, combine them in to an action and assign that to the mouse wheel, as I do in this video, the modifier x2 means that it zooms in twice the amount as before in one step.

Say you zoom from view A to view C, which is two zoom steps away. If you use single zoom steps and not the mouse modifier, you also get a view B which is between A and C zoom-wise.

The mouse modifier has you jumping directly to view C from view A. In OSX this is not the case. It renders the inbetweener view B as well. This makes it appear smoother, but also a lot slower.

The end result is that the machine is slower than the user.
that is a very interesting observation; thanks airon.

perhaps we need some kind of option to infuse our graphic engine with "common sense"
logic... like : "if there is another zoom command in the queue buffer, then stop drawing" ?
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Old 05-16-2010, 11:04 AM   #26
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GUI in OSX has always been so terrible slow. Even Logic feels like a chewing gum. Reaper is not workable for me on OSX.
When im getting a Logic project for mixing i cant wait to export it to Reaper Win. It feels like after driving a big loaded truck jumping onto a Ferrari.
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Old 05-21-2010, 12:35 PM   #27
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That's what pisses me off about Apple. They always seem to reserve the best ways to make their applications work on their platforms for themselves or not document capabilities for developers that could help them make better applications. Windows has it's own set of issues too though.
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Old 05-25-2010, 01:32 PM   #28
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Yep, this OSX gui thing really is a shame.....

I just tried Reaper on Win7, and it's incredibly snappy......now I completely get why so many people rave about its speed.

I really strongly wish the OSX version was as good; I don't get along well with the windows way of working.

I had a few moments of joy when I installed the latest OSX pre-release (3.53 pre1) and for a little while the gui seemed to have significantly sped up! Then for whatever reason, it returned to being sluggish. It's the marquee, loop and time selection that I really notice.
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Old 05-27-2010, 08:04 AM   #29
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Yep really sluggish here as well, especially at higher resolutions. Other DAW software seems to have no problem, Pro Tools can keep up with me dragging stuff around on screen no problem.
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Old 05-28-2010, 12:40 AM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by timlloyd View Post
Yep, this OSX gui thing really is a shame.....

I really strongly wish the OSX version was as good; I don't get along well with the windows way of working.
+1.
Please, Justin, Schwa and friends, try to fix that!!!!!
I need Reaper! And I need it on my Mac!!!!!!!
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Old 05-28-2010, 12:52 PM   #31
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+1 to that +1

I just spent all day using Reaper for a mix session and while I really enjoy all the editing and routing I can do, I VERY nearly just thought **** it and switched to Logic. It's the first time I've used it properly for anything other than just messing around with mix ideas, and it let me down unfortunately.

On my computer at least, any more than 16 tracks @ 48k and the GUI latency gets so bad it feels like I'm wading through mud.....it starts taking around 10 seconds to start playback etc. I've heard tell that Cubase has similar mac/windows performance discrepancies.................but 16 tracks at 48k? Thats shouldn't overload my laptop.

Suffice to say, I think I'll have to give Reaper a break until this gets addressed. It becomes unusable at times.

It's unfortunate that all my posts oh here seem to be me b****ing :P
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Old 05-28-2010, 01:49 PM   #32
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Just some contextual info about this + the massive OSX cpu use issue.

Reaper 3.53pre4 - 30 tracks @ 48k ---- hovering around 80% cpu
- GUI very sluggish
- Audio glitching and drop-outs - ie not useable


Logic 8 - same 30 tracks @48k ------- hovering around 35% cpu
- GUI just as responsive as ever
- flawless audio - no problems

Cpu checked in Activity Monitor with no other apps open at the time. Reaper cpu was roughly the same as shown in Activity Monitor, the Logic cpu meter showed no bars at all, just some periodic tiny spikes on the HD meter, which is totally expected when playing 30 tracks.

No plugins in either project, buffer sizes in both apps was 1024, same audio files, same audio interface and same results on built-in speakers. No competition really. Despite the great editing in Reaper, unless I switch to windows or the OSX issues are confirmed by devs and addressed I don't think I'll be using Reaper sorry guys

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Old 05-28-2010, 02:57 PM   #33
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Default what are you talking about ?

really I don't know... I have a session with 160 stereo tracks 44,1, disk read is around 50 MB/s, CPU @ 65% average... runs smoothly, no drops, no glitch, it takes less than a second to buffer before play start and that's it...
Also runs a few plugins, reaEQ + reaverb
I work a lot on protools LE and I don't think it's faster...
My config : hakintosh OSX 10.5.8 quadcore@2500MHz 4G RAM

so I wonder : how do you explain that ?

I join a screen capture of this session
Attached Images
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Old 05-28-2010, 03:23 PM   #34
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Well I can't explain it exactly, which is why I don't know exactly what the issue is with Reaper on my system!

Your set-up is obviously more powerful than mine (MBP 2.5GHz, Intel Core-2 Duo, 2GB RAM, 7200 RPM internal HD - OSX 10.6.3). It's an oddity, maybe even a bug with how Reaper runs on certain systems. Could the high cpu use be due in part to the 64-bit audio engine? This is an unnecessary level of bit-precision really but seems to cause no issues on windows so it's all good for that platform. It's also unlikely to be the primary cause of these problems.

Like Adam Wathan mentioned, Reaper gets less responsive at high resolutions (I'm using 1920x1200 here, any less than that is blurry on my screen) so that's obviously not helping performance for me.

But.....no other programs I have tried - PTLE, Logic 8, Ableton Live 8 (tried Samplitude 10 and Reaper 3 on a windows 7 partition of my HD) have this issue at all.

So I can fairly deduce that the problem lies with Reaper on OSX - NOTHING else is the problem on my system. It sound like you have a good mixing set-up if you can use 160 stereo @44.1k...........just be happy that it's working for you. The other people who posted in this thread are having legitimate problems though.


I seem to have gotten carried away.........my posts are probably more suited to the "Mac OSX high CPU load" thread.........sorry for the "spam"
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Old 06-04-2010, 03:23 PM   #35
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What is your VU meter update frequency set to in Preferences Meters/VU?

Is your colordepth thousands or millions?
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Old 06-04-2010, 04:37 PM   #36
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It's no longer possible on OSX 10.6 to change the colour depth to thousands unfortunately.

I'm using a meter update frequency of 20, anything lower than about 15 starts to be noticeably slow. Lowering this below 10 does significantly improve cpu use and would be a decent short-term work around for me if it didn't change the frequency globally. At least the master buss needs solid metering......preferably all other buss tracks as well, but because of the global track type this isn't possible.

The GUI issue as related to the mixer view does seem to be directly due to the screen-drawing of the metering. However as cpu use increases the arrange/edit window GUI (ie dragging items, editing, fades, automation, selection...and scroll-bars etc...) slows down a lot as well, sometimes to the point where it seems like a battle to do anything.

The strangest thing about this is that the issues are usually worse after Reaper has been open and running a heavy session for a long time. I noticed that if I close the project and let things chill for a while, loading back up often runs more smoothly. Whether this could be a side-effect of my laptop heating up after prolonged use I don't know; suffice to say I've not noticed it being a problem with any of my other software.

I don't know if any of this info is helpful or not, but thanks for looking into it.
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Old 06-04-2010, 06:35 PM   #37
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Thousands would probably be slower, anyway. Can you try 3.53pre12 and see if it affects things?
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Old 06-04-2010, 07:03 PM   #38
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Just tried out pre12, 30 empty tracks no fx etc, not in playback:

Mixer closed seems to have the same(ish) cpu use, and with the mixer open is fluctuating around 46% rather than around 55%. This is still with faster text rendering on and vu update frequency of 20. I don't know if this is enough to say with any certainty that there is any difference.

The slow GUI is still a problem as much as before though. I just took a screen recording with quicktime of a test project that was a good example of the slow GUI and also the audio glitches seemingly influenced by the GUI and mixer window. For some reason it looks too flickery and isn't a good representation of what was happening, so I'll try and do a better one in the morning that demonstrates the problems.

Thanks
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Old 06-04-2010, 10:00 PM   #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by timlloyd View Post
Just tried out pre12, 30 empty tracks no fx etc, not in playback:

Mixer closed seems to have the same(ish) cpu use, and with the mixer open is fluctuating around 46% rather than around 55%. This is still with faster text rendering on and vu update frequency of 20. I don't know if this is enough to say with any certainty that there is any difference.

The slow GUI is still a problem as much as before though. I just took a screen recording with quicktime of a test project that was a good example of the slow GUI and also the audio glitches seemingly influenced by the GUI and mixer window. For some reason it looks too flickery and isn't a good representation of what was happening, so I'll try and do a better one in the morning that demonstrates the problems.

Thanks
What's odd about this is that even my totally slow, anemic Core Duo original MBP still uses about 10% CPU in this task. Granted, at 1440x900, but still this thing is SLOW. Using fullscreen on a C2D imac at 1920x1280, it uses ~5%. What the hell is going on, I want to know? :/

Any chance anybody who experiences this is in the bay area or in NYC?
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Old 06-04-2010, 10:34 PM   #40
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Quote:
Originally Posted by timlloyd View Post
Just tried out pre12, 30 empty tracks no fx etc, not in playback:

Mixer closed seems to have the same(ish) cpu use, and with the mixer open is fluctuating around 46% rather than around 55%. This is still with faster text rendering on and vu update frequency of 20. I don't know if this is enough to say with any certainty that there is any difference.

The slow GUI is still a problem as much as before though. I just took a screen recording with quicktime of a test project that was a good example of the slow GUI and also the audio glitches seemingly influenced by the GUI and mixer window. For some reason it looks too flickery and isn't a good representation of what was happening, so I'll try and do a better one in the morning that demonstrates the problems.

Thanks

I have exact the same problems on my imac 27` 4GB Ram OSX 10.6.3
Try to enlarge the docked mixer - ( twice as big than the arranger window!) it will change the CPU use..! and its correct that in a big project, ( lots of tracks and plugins ) the CPU use increases with the time you work on this project - after a reboot all works fine for a while...
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