8 core vs 12 core for Logic Pro?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by paulcristo, Aug 24, 2010.

  1. paulcristo macrumors newbie

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    Aug 24, 2010
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    Los Angeles, CA
    #1
    Hello. I'm told by Apple engineers when I call the Apple Store that I have no need for a 12 core machine with regard to Logic. They told me an 8 core is sufficient for even the most intensive Logic session.

    Is this an accurate assessment?

    Thanks

    -Paul
     
  2. strausd macrumors 68030

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    Jul 11, 2008
    Location:
    Texas
    #2
    From what I've heard, Logic seems to better with higher clock speeds instead of more cores.
     
  3. milo macrumors 604

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    Sep 23, 2003
    #3
    The Logic situation is complicated and confusing. In short, Logic can benefit from both higher clock speeds and more cores, but only certain numbers of cores are supported.

    On a quad, either imac i7 or mac pro, Logic sees all cores and uses the hyperthreading. The app shows eight CPUs in the cpu meter window.

    On an eight core, Logic still shows eight cores and doesn't use the HT.

    On a macbook pro i7 which is dual core plus hyperthreading, Logic doesn't use the HT cores and shows two cores.

    Now with the six core machines it gets even more complicated. It looks like Logic wasn't designed to run on that number of cores and has terrible performance. There's a benchmark here, for comparison a quad can get over fifty tracks. I don't agree with the conclusions he draws, but his data is useful.

    http://macperformanceguide.com/Reviews-MacProWestmere-LogicStudio.html

    The original benchmark is here with some other results:
    http://www.gearslutz.com/board/music-computers/371545-logic-pro-multicore-benchmarktest.html

    Not only is the six core 3.33 not an improvement over a slower quad, it actually performs WORSE with Logic. Looks like the app just doesn't work right on that configuration and needs an update.

    I haven't seen anyone online try Logic on a 12 core yet so who knows how it will work.

    If anyone here has Logic and one of the new machines (especially a 12), any reports would be very much appreciated.

    And for any Logic user looking at a new mac pro, I'd hold off a purchase until more is known about the issue, and probably until Logic 9.1.2 is out.
     
  4. paulcristo thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #4
    Thanks for the info! It makes sense that Logic wouldn't necessarily know what to do with a hexacore machine since the processors were announced by Intel after all the Logic 9 updates came out. The Apple Store Logic engineer guy said that it can address all the cores but that might be theoretical or just malarkey.

    The test done at http://macperformanceguide.com/Reviews-MacProWestmere-LogicStudio.html isn't really a good "real-life" test for most Logic Pro users. It looks like he just opened a synth instrument and kept duplicating it until an error happened. Most Logic users have many different elements happening simultaneously including hard disk streaming and video playback which isn't reflected in this test.

    The other test deals with Logic 8 and isn't running on any of the new processors.

    Do you think it's true that even if Logic were optimized for a hexacore machine that it would do any good? The engineer said that Logic wasn't even capable of maxing out a hexacore and an 8-core would be plenty. It looks like an 8-core with a metric s***-load of RAM might be the best way to go.

    Thoughts?
     
  5. dockingbay94 macrumors regular

    dockingbay94

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    Jul 29, 2010
    #5
    I'm running Logic on the new 3.33 6 core with 12GB of RAM and it is amazing.

    With Logic you definitely should be looking towards higher clock speeds and larger amounts of RAM over cores at this point in time.
     
  6. milo macrumors 604

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    Sep 23, 2003
    #6
    Actually, the last Logic update was march, and intel was already shipping six core chips to the public at that point, so apple definitely could have tested the app with them if they wanted to take the time.

    Apple store guys generally have no clue, I'd be really skeptical of anything they say.

    While that test isn't a good "real life" test, it is a standard benchmark that many Logic users have tried on many machines, and it generally does give a good idea of how different machines compare in how Logic runs on them. It also has been very useful in seeing how many cores are used as well as other diagnostics for the app. The test is intended to exclude disk speed and focus solely on CPU performance, that is done on purpose for the sake of making CPU comparisons.

    And the "other test" is actually the same test so the results are comparable. It isn't specific to Logic 8, it just started on that version and if you look later in the thread people are now using it on Logic 9 as well.

    Right now Logic maxes out a quad including HT. On 8 core it uses 8 cores but doesn't touch HT at all. On 6 core it looks like it may be broken, so at the very least they need to fix that. But from the way Logic works on varying machines, it sure looks like the app could be updated so that it would be able to max out 8 and 12 core machines including HT. And there are definitely plugins that need every bit of CPU they can get - whether 8 cores is "plenty" depends on what you are doing but there are still people using one or more slave computers because a single mac running Logic can't do everything they need.
     
  7. milo macrumors 604

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    Sep 23, 2003
    #7
    dockingbay94, could you try running the benchmark song linked in this thread and report back (and whether you're running logic in 32 or 64 bit)?

    http://www.gearslutz.com/board/music-computers/371545-logic-pro-multicore-benchmarktest.html

    One user reported a result that was worse than the quad machines, it would be great to get either confirmation of that number or a number that is more correct. If you have a minute to try it out and let us know the result that would be very much appreciated, unfortunately there has been hardly any feedback from Logic users with the new machines.

    And if any Logic users have the new 12 core, any info would be appreciated as well. Thanks in advance.
     
  8. chendry macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2010
    #8
    My 3.33GHz Hexa arrived today (um, YAY - been waiting since December '09 for an update) and I've just finished installing Logic 9 and have run a few of my older sessions. It's a HUGE increase from my 2007 CD2 MBP (in fact I may never have to use the freeze button again!) but it's maxing out at 4 cores of usage, despite 6 showing up in the system performance window. Obviously something is going awry.

    On that gearslutz benchmark, I'm getting about 45 tracks (32-bit). Seems kinda low, but I'm still on the original 3GB of RAM as my 3rd party 12GB of RAM doesn't arrive until tomorrow. Maybe that will help a little, but I'd like to see what I'd achieve if all 12 cores (incl. HT) showed up to lend a hand.

    Hope this helps!
     
  9. milo macrumors 604

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    Sep 23, 2003
    #9
    Thanks for the info, it's very helpful and confirms what had already been reported. When you say that four cores are used, I assume if you look in the Activity Monitor app (which should show 12 CPU meters on your machine), four meters will show activity when you run the test session in Logic.

    One other thing you can try if you are willing and have the time - if you have the developer tools installed, there's a preference pane you can activate that allows turning off individual cores and hyperthreading. I suspect that if you turn off two of the cores (basically making the machine run like a quad, but leave on hyperthreading), you'll see a major increase in performance.

    The preference pane is here, just double click on it to make it available:
    /Developer/Extras/PreferencePanes/Processor.prefPane

    If you have a chance to test this out, let us know if it improves performance or otherwise makes a difference. Thanks again for running the benchmark.
     
  10. chendry macrumors newbie

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    Aug 19, 2010
    #10
    Ok, cool. Will look into that. Not really familiar with the Developer Tools, but I should be able to work it out.

    Won't be able to try it till Sunday though as I'm out of town for a few days.

    Will let you know how it goes.
     
  11. chendry macrumors newbie

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    Aug 19, 2010
    #11
    I know this has probably already been established, but today I was able to turn off two of my six cores and Logic showed a total of eight threads and my track count with the gearslutz benchmark went from 45 (all processors enabled; Logic showing six threads) to about 76.

    Kinda bitter sweet I guess, but no doubt when Logic gets updated to support 12+ threads it'll be even better.

    Anyone doing heavy synth-based sessions where processor speed is important and cost is a factor, I'd still recommend the 6-core machine, despite this obvious glitch.
     
  12. Paradiseapple macrumors member

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    Aug 18, 2010
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    Germany
    #12
    But what will happen with logic on a 12-core at the moment? Will it use 3, 4, 6 or 8 cores at the moment? Maybe it is the better option than the six-core from that point of view.
     
  13. paulcristo thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Los Angeles, CA
    #13
    Based on all the information everyone has contributed, I think an 8-core machine is a good middle ground for achieving solid Logic performance while leaving room for future implementation of more cores/threads. Apple tends to take their sweet time updating Logic so who knows when it'll fully support the newer machines.

    Thoughts?
     
  14. milo macrumors 604

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    Sep 23, 2003
    #14
    Quad or octo are definitely the safe bets although the six should perform very well if the app ever gets updated. But as you said, Apple takes forever to get Logic caught up, they still don't even fully support the eight core machines that shipped 15 months ago.

    Anyone try it on a 12 core?
     
  15. Trailerman macrumors member

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    Aug 12, 2010
    #15
    Apple have on two ocassions confirmed absolutely categorically to me that Logic wil use all 12 cores of the 12 core Mac Pro. I've spoken to Logic Pro support and had this confirmed, and had an online session with a pre-sales guy who also (apparently) confirmed it with a pro-audio expert.

    I'm not saying I necessarily believe them, just reporting what I've heard. Of course they would almost defintiely have confirmed that it uses all 6 cores of a hexacore, which patently is not the case, so read into that what you will.

    I'm itching to pull the trigger on a 12 core, but the complete lack of clarity from Apple in the light of glaring performance issues and anomolies is really putting me off.
     
  16. milo macrumors 604

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    Sep 23, 2003
    #16
    You could always ask them if you get the machine and it doesn't use all 12, if you would be able to return the machine with no restocking fee.
     
  17. wesk702 macrumors 68000

    wesk702

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    The hood
    #17
    runs even great on a 4 core.
    8 won't give you any problems dude
     
  18. sochet macrumors regular

    sochet

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    Nov 1, 2006
    #18
    Just did the geekbench score with the new 8 core mac and 6gb's of ram and got 78 tracks (but I do have safari open with 20+ tabs and I'm streaming the new Apple event)

    If I put a bit more ram in it (and moved the file to a scratch disc and wasn't streaming) I bet I could do all those tracks!
     
  19. Bucko macrumors member

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    Feb 24, 2009
    #19
    Get's so confusing. I am planning to get a new Westmere/Hex. MP this Fall.
    Might be another thread but how would Digital Performer 7, Vienna Symphonic Instruments, East West, Kontak work with a 3.33. Ghz/6 core or 2.4 Ghz, 8 core? Do I need a 12 core?
     
  20. Trailerman macrumors member

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    Aug 12, 2010
    #20
    Presumably your 8 core is showing all 8 cores active in Logic? Would be good to see how many tracks you get running Logic in isolation.
     
  21. ErikSchroder macrumors newbie

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    Aug 18, 2010
    #21
    I'm thinking about getting an 8 core, but it feels like it's old news. Sure, I don't know much about processors but I don't know why the clock speeds are much lower than last year? Even the "cheapest" model of last year. And why the RAM speed is "only" at 1066 MHz. Maybe I'm nitpicking but it just doesn't feel that future proof to me. Someone please correct me.

    Maybe not the correct thread, but I do have Logic, so... but I also use Cubase.
     
  22. sochet macrumors regular

    sochet

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    Nov 1, 2006
    #22
    Oddly enough on Logic's system overview it showed 7 out of the 8 cores maxed, and the 8th core half way up. (that may be because Logic leaves half a core for the OS and other apps.

    In what way do you mean in isolation? As in tracks per core?
     
  23. sochet macrumors regular

    sochet

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    Nov 1, 2006
    #23
    If you're gonna be scoring then more RAM would be beneficial for you, we don't know if and when Logic 9 will support 6/12 cores properly with Hyperthreading so don't count on it coming any day now.

    You're basically using sampler plugins (Kontakt, East West orchestra and VSL) all of those rely heavily on large amounts of RAM. So get the 2.4 octo and with the price difference of the 6 you can put 24gigs in.

    Also you could down the line put 2 6 core processors in when they get a bit cheaper, so it's the perfect one to future proof yourself.
     
  24. Trailerman macrumors member

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    Aug 12, 2010
    #24
    No, I mean if you don't run all the other stuff on your system whilst you're benchmarking Logic. Good to see that Logic is using all available cores - the 8th core is probably being used by the OS.

    Cheers

    Jules
     
  25. Trailerman macrumors member

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    Aug 12, 2010
    #25
    Logic does not use all 12 cores of the 12-core Mac Pro, and will not do so any time soon. Mine arrived this morning, I ran some tests and then spoke to Apple, who performed a complete U-Turn on their official 12-core / Logic Pro position of last week. Logic isn't coded to work on 12 core systems, and to do so requires a major upgrade, was the very clear message. Last week they told me the exact opposite.

    In short, don't consider either the 12 or 6 core machines for use with Logic, if you want to maximize the hardware resources available. Logic is better optimized for 4 and 8 core rigs (which are also cheaper).

    If you've already bought or ordered a 6 or 12 core system, you may want to consider returning/replacing it for reasons which Apple would have trouble arguing with.

    More info here:

    http://redirectingat.com/?id=690X12...ac-pro-6-core-3-33ghz-12-core-2-66-ghz-3.html
     

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