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Is 'System Overload' affected by HD speed?


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Hey guys,

 

I work on my laptop which has an SSD drive, but all my projects are on my external HD. 

 

My thunderbolt HD died a couple of months ago, and according to 'the internet' the speed difference with USB3 HD's is basically non existent, so I bought an USB3 drive since it was half the price.

 

However, I have the feeling I'm getting more 'System Overloads', but I'm not too sure. I also had to buy a new MacBook Pro, used to have the 2013 version model now I have the 2015 model with basically the same specs (not sure if there even is any difference).

 

However, I also upgraded to El Capitan, no fresh install just updated the image of my last laptop.

 

Attached are 2 screenshots of right before I get the system overload.

550851257_ScreenShot2016-11-02at12_59_47.png.be15574caba2d7d5dac93612a93ed005.png

1209630936_ScreenShot2016-11-02at12_59_54.png.6212cbde065904cc681231cc0ee687ef.png

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Am I reading this display properly?  Are there eight cores doing CPU activity and a negligible amount of I/O load?

 

Do the old and new computers have an equivalent amount of RAM?

 

Yeah they both have 16GB Ram.

 

It's a Quad-core, but I believe it sees it as 8 logical processors cause of hyperthreading.

 

*And yes that is correct, 8 cores working hard and almost no I/O load, probably cause the projects mostly midi and heavy effect plugins.

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Wel-l-l ... for a "real-time, CPU-very-intensive" application like Logic, I have my misgivings about "hyper-threading."  In some ways this is just a figment of Intel's marketing imagination: you really can't turn one physical core into two ... not if the "two" are equally (very ...) active.  Intel gets away with it because most applications really aren't that CPU-intensive.  Nevertheless, this is what we all have to work with.

 

The biggest improvement that you might be able to make, if it can be done, is to increase the amount of RAM still farther.  You want to make sure that Logic has an abundance of physical RAM: that it doesn't have to perform disk-I/O at all in order to make up for any sort of memory shortage.

 

In my experience (with a variety of applications), the one thing that you can do "to make it faster," is always one thing:  add RAM.  "Chips are cheap," and there is by definition no substitute for physical RAM.  The less RAM you have, the more I/O you must do, and there's always that chance that the I/O won't quite get completed in time ... resulting in "System Overload."

 

Yes, you also want the I/O subsystem to be "as fast as possible," but fundamentally you want to avoid I/O altogether.  And, that takes RAM.  "Gobs of it."  If ever given a choice between "more cores/mHz, less RAM," or vice-versa, there's no question in my mind that I'd choose "vice-versa."

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