CPU usage in pyramix native

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CPU usage in pyramix native

Postby baskind » Fri Jun 12, 2015 09:44

Dear Pyramix Developers/users,

I have a quite basic question concerning CPU usage of the mixer: I am willing to use Pyramix Native on a quite big film scoring project, and I am facing weird CPU problems: currently I work on a Macbook Pro i7 (8 cores) with Boot Camp and Windows 7 Professional 64 bits. I never had any problems for tracking (which I usually do with Pyramix), but now, as I am adding more and more plugins, I get constantly clicks and CPU overloads, whereas Pyramix takes less than 15% of the whole CPU according to the Task Manager.

Actually it seems that the mixer is running on one core only: I created a dummy session and added cpu-intensive plugins (VST and VS3, I tried both) until I almost reach a CPU overload in Pyramix (95-97%), but in the processor monitor of the Windows Task Manager, only one core is really busy and the global CPU usage of Pyramix, estimated by the OS, is around 10-12%. I tested with Pyramix Native 8.1 as well as Pyramix Native 9.1 64 bits. My OS is already quite well optimized (no network, no antivirus, graphics and power management set to high performance, all useless services shutdown, etc...), and the processor affinity for Pyramix is set to all cores.

My question is: is it right, that the mixer in Pyramix Native can only use one core on a multicore machine? Do I absolutely need a Masscore setup to get full advantage of all cores? If yes, since Masscore does not run on laptops, am I stuck?

Or did I miss something?

Best regards,

Alexis
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Re: CPU usage in pyramix native

Postby fl » Fri Jun 12, 2015 16:05

Audio interface? Its latency? Its connection protocol?
Plugins with variable (settable) latency?
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Re: CPU usage in pyramix native

Postby baskind » Sat Jun 13, 2015 08:45

Hi Frank,

my audio interface is a Fireface 400 running in ASIO/Firewire with the latest drivers, the I/O latency is set to 1024 samples. The Firewire driver is the legacy one, as the new one from Windows 7 had more latency issues.

The most problematic plugin is Altiverb 7, which itself takes ca. 30% CPU (in Pyramix) per instance. Its own latency is 1024 samples, and as far as I know, it cannot be set manually by the user (it was possible in Altiverb 6, as far as I remember).

However this leaves my previous question still open: is the mixer engine of Pyramix Native able to run on several cores in parallel?

Best,

Alexis
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Re: CPU usage in pyramix native

Postby Graemme » Fri Jun 19, 2015 12:01

MassCore will run on a laptop. You need a PCIe interface for the required Merging Network card (but not a Thunderbolt <> PCIe card...Thunderbolt is not MassCore license-friendly.)
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Re: CPU usage in pyramix native

Postby baskind » Mon Jun 22, 2015 10:18

Hi Graemme,

Thanks for the info. This means, if I want to run it on a macbook, that I need a PCI interface connected on the Expresscard slot, right?

As far as I understood, Masscore requires not only the Merging Gigabit Ethernet PCIe card, but also Horus, since Masscore does not run on ASIO interfaces. Is it correct?

Best regards,

Alexis
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Re: CPU usage in pyramix native

Postby klaukholm » Mon Jun 22, 2015 10:43

How big is this project?
Can you describe channel/bus count, samplerate and plugin use?

With masscore you get control of VST use across multiple cores.
Last edited by klaukholm on Wed Jul 15, 2015 23:14, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: CPU usage in pyramix native

Postby mpdonahue » Mon Jun 22, 2015 22:48

baskind wrote:Hi Graemme,

Thanks for the info. This means, if I want to run it on a macbook, that I need a PCI interface connected on the Expresscard slot, right?

As far as I understood, Masscore requires not only the Merging Gigabit Ethernet PCIe card, but also Horus, since Masscore does not run on ASIO interfaces. Is it correct?

Best regards,

Alexis

There are no currently available MacBook computers with an Expresscard slot. However, you can also run Mykerinos cards in external hardware. However, you will be limited to a single X30 card system. I've gotten PCI cards to work in a external PCIe to PCI bridge but it is at it's edge of stability with a single card.
All the best,
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Re: CPU usage in pyramix native

Postby baskind » Thu Jun 25, 2015 01:30

@Mark: you're right, my Macbook Pro has actually an SDXC expansion slot, not an expresscard. There are adapters (like the one from sonnet), but I have no idea about the stability, and at this point, investing in a PC tower may be the best solution: as I said, I need more power for mixing. For tracking and editing, Native runs fine.

@klaukholm: I know the text you're mentioning, but it concerns Masscore, not Native. And this is exactly why I posted my first message: as far as I understood (but it's not clearly written anywhere), only Masscore takes full advantage of a multiple core CPU, at least for VST plugins.

It's problematic that such an information is not explicitly provided by Merging, as well as the quite basic questions I am addressing regarding the minimal setup to run Masscore. It entails useless confusion and may discourage possible new users to start with this great DAW. For the project I'm currently working on, since I did not gather enough information in the last weeks to be sure I can manage it until the end with Pyramix, I had for safety to switch to another DAW for mixing, which I would have preferred to avoid.

Best,

Alexis
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Re: CPU usage in pyramix native

Postby klaukholm » Thu Jun 25, 2015 07:52

Have you been in touch with your distributor or dealer for support presuming that you are on ASM?
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Re: CPU usage in pyramix native

Postby baskind » Sat Jun 27, 2015 00:45

No I have not, since I don't have ASM currently. But honestly I don't consider I'd have to pay to get answers to such questions. I have actually the opposite point of view: I'd have been interested in investing to upgrade on a more powerful configuration that suit my current needs, but without enough information, I prefer not to take the risk.

Best

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Re: CPU usage in pyramix native

Postby phaseboy » Sat Jun 27, 2015 04:33

In my own experience with native I have found the following:

- processing related to pyramix's mixer will use all cores (however...)
- once the pyramix cpu meter (in pyramix) passes 60% or so you may start to notice occasional glitches (how occasional depends on a variety of factors with your system).
- once the pyramix cpu meter approaches maximum (spikes of 90% and "over") you will start to have major issues and will also notice that the core usage in the windows resource monitor will change to showing maximum use and cores except the first will drop to no activity.

this is really a lengthy way of saying that I suspect (based on your original post) you are simply using more processing than you have in the past and have hit the limits of your system and are seeing odd behaviour because of this.

Depending on what plugins you use I would not necessarily expect this to be rectified with a masscore set-up unless you run (or can switch to) mostly VS3 plugins. If you can then you'll be happy.

If you could post some details (eg: number of tracks, number of instances of which plugins, sample rate, etc...) it might help to give you further thoughts as to whether your system may be at fault - although I would suspect it's not.

Best Regards,

Mark
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Re: CPU usage in pyramix native

Postby Jesse.Lewis » Thu Jul 09, 2015 03:17

I am having exactly this issue, and it appears to be a matter of Pyramix not supporting multiple processors in Native. Merging, can you confirm?

Have installed Pyramix Native on a 8-core Xeon Mac Pro running boot camp Windows 7 64. Only one CPU registers any activity and Pyramix is extremely easily overloaded.

This is a Dropbox link to screen shots from roughly the same moment of 1) an overloaded Pyramix project and 2) the Resource Monitor. https://www.dropbox.com/sh/tx6ccri4wfs4 ... 77Hza?dl=0

I am eager to hear about any solutions to this problem. I will try ASM with Masscore this week and report; I have requested an ASM key.

Jesse
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Re: CPU usage in pyramix native

Postby Jesse.Lewis » Thu Jul 09, 2015 18:34

REVISED AGAIN: Macbook Pro Retina i5 appears to work with multiple cores, but meters are not easy to read. Pyramix usage is still orders of magnitude above the Windows Resource Monitor indication. Xeon 8-core (16 hyperthreaded) definitely does not use more than one core. Also have confirmed with another Xeon 8-core user that only one virtual core (one half of a physical core) is being utilized.

Can anyone else speak to their experience?

Jesse
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Re: CPU usage in pyramix native

Postby kwithnail » Mon Jul 20, 2015 12:27

Have only ever seen Native use a single core on any of our machines, I'm pretty sure that's how it works.
Also see: viewtopic.php?f=54&t=10246#p35167
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Re: CPU usage in pyramix native

Postby johndsadams » Wed Aug 05, 2015 22:56

Hi,
I'm running 9.1.8 on a MacPro Xeon 8 core CPU with Windows 7 64 bit. I just installed an update of Altiverb 7.2.6 (which reports better memory usage) and suddenly have major audio clicks and disruptions due to CPU usage.

I came here and read through this thread hoping to find solutions.

I did open up the Resource Monitor and noticed activity on all 8 cores at different times. It appeared that when Pyramix was running with CPU sucking plugins (Altiverb and Ozone) that multiple cores became active. Interestingly, as I began to mix down my CPU monitor in PMX hit red and stayed red and 2 cores seemed to become inactive. Not sure whats going on there!

I may uninstall this most recent version of Altiverb and go back to the previous version to see if I can regain any CPU headroom. I'll report back.

-John
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