mac pro/fcp x not fully utilizing cpu?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by hisocinema, Feb 26, 2012.

  1. hisocinema macrumors newbie

    Feb 26, 2012
    hey everyone,

    i scored a sweet deal on a 12 core, 2.93 mac pro and i've spent the past week configuring it. it's a beast of computer now with an ssd boot drive, an ssd array as my FCP X scratch disk, and 64 gb of ram. here's the problem though, FCP X is still rather sluggish.

    when rendering, importing, etc, i can't get the machine to use more than 20% of the cpu. watching activity monitor shows that it's barely touching the ram or cpu. any thoughts?
  2. derbothaus macrumors 601


    Jul 17, 2010
    Well if other apps DO use all cores it is a problem with Final Cut X. However on a 2.93GHz Quad Mac Pro FCPX throttles the processor quite a bit. Maybe it was built for iMac:rolleyes: Would not put it past Apple.
  3. Zwhaler macrumors 604


    Jun 10, 2006
    I've found that FCP X doesn't always jump to use all of the processor if the data being read from the Event or Project folder is stored on an external rather than internal drive. If your SSD's are external, try storing the data on one of the internal drives and see if it acts different. That being said, FCP X for me does jump to full processor usage while processing 'external' data, it just takes a couple minutes of rendering at 5-20% sometimes.
  4. hisocinema thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 26, 2012
    first, thanks for your thoughts! to clarify, my ssd drives are all internal. one as a boot drive and two striped together for the fcp scratch drive.

    by throwing some extra effects at a big video file i did get it near 50% but I'm still puzzled by the fact that a background render ticks along slowly while it appears that half of the processing power goes unused. all of the cores are in use, just not anywhere near 100%.
  5. wildgiles macrumors member

    Feb 6, 2011
    Rendering doesn't use up the CPU so that you can do other things such as use Motion. One interesting thing is that when you export a timeline any unrendered video goes to the video card for processing. I think apple is working on figuring out an ideal use of CPU and Graphics card when using FCP X. I hope in future versions, there will be preference adjustment for the amount of RAM and CPU FCP X is allowed to use.
  6. thekev macrumors 604


    Aug 5, 2010
    A lot of applications have things that are designed to be run in the background. Typically you do have options for prioritization of cpu and ram. It's kind of odd to see such features left out (assuming they are as I don't have a copy of it to look at). The things I read about them having left out are really odd. I can't test for myself, but really I don't understand why they wouldn't be there. I'd think it would at least try to make use of as much dormant cpu power as possible.

    Apple has an odd method of prioritization. They market quite a lot at very young people. I'm not exactly old, but I mean their commercials and marketing have marketed heavily to teenagers for years. They go off to college, and they ask for a mac laptop. If anything they're probably spending more time testing how it runs on the newest macbook airs and pros. Something I've also noticed with Apple is that they like to optimize for the newest cpus with little regard for machines that were purchased a year or two ago (and really there hasn't been anything to truly warrant replacing a 2009 mac pro at this point). If anything they'll start to hold back on inflation of system requirements in the hope of being able to port more applications (in basic forms) to the ipad over the next few years. It does have some appealing elements, but I haven't purchased one yet.

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