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New Mac needed or PT at fault??

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New Mac needed or PT at fault??

Postby Arcanekid » Tue Nov 01, 2011 7:46 pm

Hi everyone,

I'm having a CPU overload error code appear approx every 10 or so seconds on my Protools 9 set-up . It's getting very annoying and was wondering if anyone would recommend upgrading my Mid 2007 20'' IMac or other suggestions to eliminate the problem? I have upgraded to Snow Leopard 10.6.3 and upped my RAM from 1 - 4GB these are the rest of my details.

OSX 10.6.3
2.4Ghz Intel core 2 duo
4GB 667mhz DDRL SDRAM
Pro Tools 9.0.0
Edirol FA66 Audio interface

I also qualify for free upgrade to PT10 which I guess I would like to take advantage of at some point.

In PT8 I would have the above error message but this is when I had a lot of tracks and inserts. My current set-up errors even on 3-4 channels with literally 1 or 2 plug ins (total, not per channel!)

I have read about Disk utility which I have done, although not being shown how to do it, maybe I could have done it wrong? Also the PT10.5 update I downloaded, but my mac says it had no software applicable to open it!


I'm a 2nd year Audio student so forgive 'newbiness'

Any help as always is much appreciated,
Kris
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Re: New Mac needed or PT at fault??

Postby Phil O » Tue Nov 01, 2011 8:12 pm

1. You should really be running sessions off a separate dedicated audio drive for optimum performance.
2. Was this a clean install or did you install over PT8?
3. Are your drivers for the Edirol interface up to date?
4. Have you tried trashing prefs and databases?
5. Is there anything else running in the background?
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Re: New Mac needed or PT at fault??

Postby Arcanekid » Tue Nov 01, 2011 8:38 pm

Phil O wrote:1. You should really be running sessions off a separate dedicated audio drive for optimum performance.

I'm unsure how to do this,I know pro tools won't run off an external hard drive, so do yo mean 'separating' my internal hard drive? Or have I misunderstood you?


Phil O wrote:2.Was this a clean install or did you install over PT8?

It was a student price cross grade from PT 8 using a MBox Micro. so over PT8

Phil O wrote:3. Are your drivers for the Edirol interface up to date?

I have searched on the edirol web-site but found none, I found this statement on zzsounds.com

'Compatible with Mac OS X Standard Driver Provided from Apple
The FA-66 uses the standard FireWire Audio driver included on Mac OS X. This means there is no driver to install - just plug it in and start recording! Your Mac will recognize it immediately.'

hrmmm

Phil O wrote:4. Have you tried trashing prefs and databases?

I did download ProTools Pref and Database Helper Application but Im unsure what it does and how to use it.

Phil O wrote:5. Is there anything else running in the background?

If you mean Safari/Itunes Etc, Sometimes maybe sometimes not, no difference found either way.

Thanks you for your reply. I'll go and read up about trashing prefs and databases.
Kris
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Re: New Mac needed or PT at fault??

Postby narcoman » Tue Nov 01, 2011 8:42 pm

How many cores assigned to PT? It's in the Audio Engine section(i think)
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Re: New Mac needed or PT at fault??

Postby Arcanekid » Tue Nov 01, 2011 9:07 pm

Not sure what you mean by 'cores'
But since you said it's in the audio engine I'm figuring you mean the stats below

(It's the playback enigne btw, so close!)
everything is maxed out.

Buffer size is 1024 (the error suggested increasing buffer size to reduce number of errors)
2 processors and CPU usage at 90%
Also 'Ignore errors during playback (this may cause clicks and pops) box is ticked.

Delay compensation engine is the only thing with 'None' selected, as I don't know what it does, the 2 options for it are
Short 1023 samples per channel and
Long 4095 Samples per channel.

If you didn't mean the above I'm afraid I don't know what you mean.
Many thanks again, K
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Re: New Mac needed or PT at fault??

Postby Scope » Wed Nov 02, 2011 12:32 am

You can't install "over the top" as it were, because the installer deletes the old files first.
So every install is new.

The internal hd is plenty fast enough for 20 + tracks.
And you are not getting "disk too slow" errors.

It is most likely a CPU load issue - or, how it is reported.
Try larger buffers but consider this-
Protools works to a standard.
As such it uses more system resources that logic or cubase.
If your machine is not in the list of recomended hardware,
You may need to up grade

If you run lion you will get a 10% speed increase
If you upgrade to 8gb ram, you get a similar 10% speed boost ( over a 4gb setup)
These two alone could tip the balance in your a favour.
And both are cheaper than a new mac!
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Re: New Mac needed or PT at fault??

Postby Phil O » Wed Nov 02, 2011 12:49 am

It's recommended that PT session data i.e audio etc (not the program/application) is run from a separate HD. For an iMac that would require a FW drive. This is so that the read/write head doesn't have to cover both audio streaming and OS activities. As another poster mentioned, this isn't necessarily the cause of your problem but it won't be helping.

Always uninstall earlier versions of PT before installing the newer as old files can get left behind/corrupted. They are full installers.

Corrupt preferences and databases have been known to cause all sorts of problems with PT so it's always worth trashing these as part of a fault finding exercise. They are automatically rebuilt after reboot. There's plenty of articles online about where these are located and what to do manually if need be.

Airport/ Bluetooth and all manor of background tasks can cause these kind of errors. Turn them off and see if the situation improves.
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Re: New Mac needed or PT at fault??

Postby Scope » Wed Nov 02, 2011 10:40 am

I have heard about network connections affecting CPU load.
Have you tried turning airport off?
It was a problem in the G3 era, forcing many of us to use a 2nd mac for the net.
But I ran PT 8 on a similar 2.4 iMac with no problems other than being greedy with soft synths
- which is/was my fault, not Apples or Digidesigns.

Are you running any scare ware mac anti virus apps?
These hugely profitable and (currently) utterly pointless apps can suck cycles away from your main apps.
Ask any windows user what happens after you install Norton!

My gut feeling is you may have a number of minor issues which collectively are upsetting PT.
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Re: New Mac needed or PT at fault??

Postby G-Doubleyou » Wed Nov 02, 2011 1:39 pm

How much free space do you have on your system drive?

:?
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Re: New Mac needed or PT at fault??

Postby Arcanekid » Wed Nov 09, 2011 5:08 pm

G-Doubleyou wrote:How much free space do you have on your system drive?

:?

about 80Gb
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