Jump to content

Best "new" Mac Pro 2012 configuration for heavy Logic use

Recommended Posts

For those WHO KNOW the answer, please help me.


I 'm currently on a MBP late 2011 2.5 GHz Intel Core i7 with 16 gb 1333 MHz DDR3 ram (purchased from OWC) and Logic Pro 9.1.7 64 bit, Apogee Duet2. It keeps crapping out so I feel I need to buy a more powerful computer, and against all better judgement after Tim Cook's little Mac Pro fiasco recently I'm thinking of buying the 2.4 GHz 12 core and putting 24 GB ram in it with an SSD drive (or two) from OWC. My sessions look like this:


Up to 60 audio tracks (obviously not all playing at once)

Up to 15 instances of Nexus

Up to 10 instances of Sylenth

Up to 2 instances of Addictive Drums

Up to 5 instances of another type of soft synth

Sometimes one soft sampler like Kontakt

2 plugs on about 100% of the channels

An additional 2-3 plugs on 50% of the channels

Plugins are usually 3rd party like Waves, Izotope, etc.


(NOTE: I KNOW I can bounce midi down to audio, freeze tracks, adjust buffer sizes, change my workflow, use less tracks, use less VI's etc. BUT I DO NOT WANT TO, and that is not the point of me asking for help. What i want is a system powerful enough to do the above without crapping out,).


When my current system is crapping out now is when Logic's CPU monitor shows one "core" (I know there are only 4 on my computer which become 8 virtual) peaking while usually hitting a chorus. But it can happen when I press play from any location also. I also practice plugin distribution over multiple busses.


The I/O disk monitor in logic now rarely hits the red, really only when it starts playing, then it goes back down to close to 0 for the rest of the song.



Will the 2.4 Ghz 12 core be OK for me or will it be overkill/not enough? If not, recommend please.


Should I install more or less than 24 GB RAM? Why? And are my Soft Synths/samplers using RAM exclusively or are they using the hard drive also?


Should I install SSD/HDD drives as follows or some other config: 1 SSD for os and apps including logic app, 1 SSD for logic session files, 1 HDD for user data/everything else.


Do I need both SSD drives or will one/none do (keeping in mind the fast processor and ram)? I'm not concerned at all about boot up time or apps opening faster, just the highest performance when logic is running.


Any additional help on where the bottlenecks currently occur/will occur much appreciated.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 things:

You're playing everything from the internal drive, correct? You probably need a dedicated drive for your sample stuff and/or dedicated project drive. In your case firewire 800.

You're using a lot of CPU intensive plugins, and the i7 is not that old of a chip. So before you spend 4000 dollars on a mac pro maybe there's a way to optimize your CPU first. Did you mess with the Processor threads in Logic's preferences?

Another I know from experience is that Apogee drivers don't like low buffer settings, giving you crackles at 32 making it unusable. Does that happen to you?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Many tanks triplets - i am playing everything from my internal 7200 hdd. But i was initially running all logic project files off of a lacie rugged 7200 firewire 800. Interestingly, moving to all internal actually gave me slightly better performance, so ive stuck with it.


Could the hdd read/write be an issue even though the logic activity monitor for hdd I/O almost never reads red and i hardly get that "disk too slow" error?


I have messed with the processor threads, from 4 to 8 to automatic - but no luck there.


I run the buffers at 256 minimum - less than that has never worked for me.


i hear you about trying to make the mbp perform like i need it too, but if its just not possible, any suggeastions on the MP specs?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think your internal HD is 5400 rpm. Unless the 3rd party soft synth uses disk streaming (like BFD), all samples and audio files get loaded into ram when you open the project.

Conceptually you want a dedicated drive for your project and samples.

Some people report overload issues with Logic 9.1.7 in Lion. Can you revert back to 9.1.6?

If not, try this:


Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think your internal HD is 5400 rpm.


The HD is 7200 rpm. I paid for the upgrade from the 5400 rpm drive that was available when I ordered the MBP from apple.


But I spent today with a modified config and ran my logic project files from a Lacie 500gb FW800 drive w 50GB of space avail. Still same problem.


Most, if not all of my soft synths go to RAM. So That's why I feel the bottleneck is the CPU because the I/O activity monitor rarely reads red and "only" stops because "disk is too slow" 25% of the time.


For the downgrading of Logic - yes, I'll certainly look into that. Do you have any links to that specific issue you can direct me to?


Otherwise, any other thoughts?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Before you go on a spending spree...


Try the following configuration:

• I/O Buffer Size: 1024 (44.1 / 48.0 kHz) or 2048 (96.0 kHz)

• Processing Threads: Automatic

• Process Buffer Range: Large



Thank you for your help, I've already tried all of the above. And certainly runs with less crackel at 1024 but still get the errors.


Totally it was running so sluggishly that it was painful. Lots of spinning wheels of death too - not fun.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just read those threads Triplets. Especially interesting is the Logic 9.1.x + Lion 10.7.x issue. Even in those threads, I couldn't find which combo is the MOST stable. Maybe you know? I would absolutely downgrade to just get to a great performing combo.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

...and after buying/installing snow leopard from the online apple store, how can I upgrade SL to exactly 10.6.8 and not a later version which apple's automatic software upgrader will want/force me to do?


You are never forced to do anything. Turn off software update in your system prefs.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Will do that, thx triplets and ski..


btw, do either of you know if I can migrate just the os from my MBAir to my MBP? I'm sitting down to do it now and I can't see how to do it in migration assistant. Of course, I can migrate more but I want to do as clean an install as possible. Forgive me if this is a newbee question.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don't know to what extent you'll be able to do a full migration from one 'puter to the other. I agree with Triplets that for Logic, a clean install would be the way to go. However, there ARE certain files that you can copy over manually if need be. Suggest that you do the install/migration, and then see how things run. If you're missing certain files afterwards you can definitely find help here on getting the two systems to be the same.
Link to comment
Share on other sites


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Create New...