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MS 3.1.1 vs 3.2.x


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I've tried everything I can think of over here, but I can't get any version of MS 3.2 to reliably play a concert that plays flawlessly in 3.1.1. What typically happens is that the concert opens just fine and everything works as usual for about 20 minutes or so. After that, I can see that the CPU readings for patches are increasing and there's a lot more spiking and instability. About the time I see spikes that exceed 60% of CPU, I start getting audio clicks and stuttering. Sometimes I see "audio engine overload" messages in the console, but other times I don't. Once the clicking begins, it slowly gets worse until I quit MS and start over.


Looking at the detailed CPU readout, it looks like Kontakt 5 is spiking in 3.2.x and it isn't spiking in 3.1.1. But, I don't know if something else is going on that's causing Kontakt to spike or it's actually the problem. It seems strange that it works so well in 3.1.1, but is struggling so much in 3.2.x. I use a lot of aliases and I wonder if that might have something to do with it. But, I'm also using a lot of other 3rd party plugs, so one of them might be causing trouble. There's no indication in Console or Activity Monitor or MS itself that points to anything in particular. In fact, things look strangely normal in all of the meters with the exception of the spiking. Even doubling the I/O buffer from 128 to 256 just delays the onset of the clicks and I obviously don't want to deal with the extra latency, especially if it doesn't even solve the problem.


Of course, if I just use one of the Apple concerts everything is fine, so it looks like a third party plug in isn't behaving. But, everything IS behaving alright in 3.1.1, so Apple changed something. I was really diligent about avoiding any plug ins or routings that caused trouble when I put the concert together in MS 3.1 and 3.1.1, so it's particularly frustrating that all that work is undone in 3.2.


I've looked around on the internet, but I haven't run across anything that matches my experience. But this is happening on both my new MBP 2015 and the MBP 2011 I use live and is completely reproducible. The live machine is stripped down for performance, so there's virtually nothing on it besides MS and all the supporting plug ins and samples. The MBP 2015 is a general use machine. Both are running OS 10.10.5. Neither one of these machines breaks a sweat while using this concert in 3.1.1 but can't manage more than 25 minutes without clicks and pops in any version of 3.2.


Has anyone else seen this behavior? I'm pretty much out of troubleshooting ideas at this point. Fortunately, I can keep using 3.1.1 and that's fine for now. But, at some point I know I'll want to move forward and so I'd like to figure this out. I have a little break at the moment and so this would be a good time to do any updates and test them before I start doing shows again.


It's just a point update. It was supposed to be easy. What could go wrong???....

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Actually, the 3.2 update was terribly buggy....so that's not surprising. Have you tried 3.2.1 to see if it's better.


Also, and I know this is ultimately shouldn't be the right answer, but for live gigs when I stopped using 3rd party plugs, many of my problems went away.


If I really need a Kontact sound, I just bounce it into the backing tracks.


Simple, stock plugins, routed efficiently using busses are the secret to a happy live gig.

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Yeah, I've tried every version of 3.2, including 3.2.3. I suspect you're right about the 3rd party plugs, but even though I love a lot of the stuff that comes with Logic and MS, they aren't capable of doing some of the things I want to do.


I'm not using backing tracks at all. I'm actually playing virtual instruments, so there's no way I can replace Kontakt since I really don't have suitable replacements for a lot of those things in EXS.


I just committed to using MS over hardware synths and workstations this summer. My experience has been very good, but having the very first update break my concerts has really started to scare me. Plus, none of the updates since the initial v3.2 came out have helped, so whatever they're working on over there has nothing to do with my problem. If weeks of work are routinely broken with every update, then this isn't a system I can trust going forward.


OTOH, I have a version (3.1.1) that works and I can probably use that for a long time. And I'll keep trying to narrow things down so that I can send a useful report to Apple or the 3rd party developer who's product is having a conflict with MS. I was just hoping that somebody had the magic pill that solved all my MS woes.


Thanks for the reply!

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Yep. I feel your pain.


I actually recently switched back to using Logic for live performance due to frustrations with the whole 3.2.x rollout.


It really sucked, because I had several performances that I had to kinda rebuild from scratch within Logic.


However, the tradeoff has been worth it, in my particular case.


If you're interested, I did a tutorial series on both Mainstage and Logic, and how I'm using them. Some of it may be helpful to you:

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Great video! I'm not sure I'm ready to go to Logic quite yet, but this is a promising alternative. The thing that used to be an issue was the way Logic live mode only used one core, but in quick testing I did with 10.2.1, it looks like this might be fixed, which would make Logic a possibility again.


I'm making some progress in keeping MS stable over here. Things are too stripped down to be useful yet, but it's possible that there's a plug in or 2 that could be causing all the mayhem. I'll keep everyone posted if I figure this out.


Thanks Stephen!

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