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Author Topic: Logic is crashing on playback  (Read 4674 times)

Stephen Swaffer

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Logic is crashing on playback
« on: December 01, 2015, 11:59:46 pm »

For over 10 years we have used multitrack playback for audio for an annual production.  Used cakewalk on a pic then look year we switched to an iMac and logics, a smooth transition it seemed.

This year, the Logics project (apparently randomly) crashes with a "Disk or system overload" error.  Usually you can clear the error, hit play and go. Once,it forced me to reboot.

We have tried last years iMac ( running El Capitan), two different MacBook pros running Yosemite one is a 2015 with a flash drive and 2.8 ghz quad core.

Two differences from last year: audio output is via sub to a QU-32, but project has crashed on MacBooks not connected to QU.

Second, the guy that but this years project dropped some MP3's into a couple places.

Project is a total of 9 audio tracks-most of it is running only one or two simultaneous tracks.  Crashes have occurred in "busy places" and in relatively easy areas.

Time is not on our side-any thoughts or suggestions? We have a new iMac on the way-but after the best MacBook Pro we had access to crashed, no one feels really good about that as a solution?



edited to fix subject line that has been driving me crazy
« Last Edit: December 10, 2015, 07:12:55 pm by Mac Kerr »
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Steve Swaffer

John L Nobile

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Re: Logics crashing on playback
« Reply #1 on: December 02, 2015, 12:20:27 am »

Do you have an external drive for audio or are you using the system drive?
And when you say Logics are you referring to Logic 9 or X or another program?
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Stephen Swaffer

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Re: Logics crashing on playback
« Reply #2 on: December 02, 2015, 07:38:56 am »

Logics X

We are using the internal system drive.  I do have a FireWire Glyph I can use/try-though I want to say I tried running off that drive on 2 older/slower macs with the same issue.  From my experience, those macs should still run the project.

The project is just over 2Gb in size, best MacBook Pro we have has 16 G of ram.
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Steve Swaffer

John L Nobile

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Re: Logics crashing on playback
« Reply #3 on: December 02, 2015, 09:28:34 am »

Sounds like you got the right gear for the gig. I've never run my audio from the system drive. I've been doing this since the 90s and it was always required to run external drives back then.
Try the external drive first. If that doesn't work,  then you have other problems that may require a complete fresh OS install.

Just thought of something else. If one or more of your audio files is corrupt, that will cause playback issues. I've also found that clipped audio files can be problematic.
The audio interface driver may be corrupt. Always a good idea to totally uninstall/reinstall that first with the latest version that works with your OS.
Also, playing back MP3's seem like a red flag for me. I'd convert them to whatever audio format you're using. And make sure all your audio files are in the same format (WAV or AIFF) with the same sample and bit rates. I've been using WAV for a few years now with no problems. Had none with AIFF either but it makes life easier if you need to transfer files to a PC.
« Last Edit: December 02, 2015, 10:45:45 am by John L Nobile »
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Stephen Swaffer

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Re: Logics crashing on playback
« Reply #4 on: December 08, 2015, 11:56:47 pm »

Thanks John for your help.  We eliminated the MP3s and froze the tracks-that helped a lot, but still not 100%.  We got the new iMac and the one of the people involved decided to go ahead and run without freezing tracks.  We made it about 4 minutes in-and faulted again, freezing the tracks kept it from faulting, but we still had some drop outs.

The new iMac does not have FireWire-actually nothing compatible with the Glyph, (same with MacBook Pros we had on hand, which is why I did not try it sooner) the only way I could run off an external was with a Sandisk Extreme USB drive I purchased to use with the QU32.  Running off this drive with tracks frozen finally ran smoothly.  Given this was our last rehearsal, I am hoping that run continues.
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Steve Swaffer

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Re: Logics crashing on playback
« Reply #5 on: December 09, 2015, 01:35:36 am »

There are Thunderbolt to firewire adapters. I use one them with a MacPro and a mini.
Not sure why you would have to freeze your trax to make it work. Are you using a lot of plugins? What does the cpu meter show?
I had a problem last year and nailed it down to a corrupt sample in my brass patch. Are you running any software samplers or instruments?
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Stephen Swaffer

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Re: Logics crashing on playback
« Reply #6 on: December 09, 2015, 08:27:05 am »

I am not sure of the details of the project build.  Most of the tracks are just wave files.  One track is a musical score, much of it composed from scratch.  I do know that he used something like 36 tracks to orchestrate the final choir song-but I have never had trouble with that-in the performance version that is mixed down to a single stereo track.  One other difference I realized yesterday is that this entire project is stereo tracks which we are outputting as mono.  I always created in mono because we play back in mono-it doesn't seem like that should be a huge deal though that is more data (redundant in most cases) to transfer.

With frozen tracks, the cpu meter maxes out at 25-30%.  With tracks not frozen, it runs about the same then suddenly red lines and faults.

We will look into a FireWire adapter-Glyph also has eSata which I think is faster?.

Right now, I am leaning towards staying with the Extreme for now.  I used because I had it in my hands and in my location getting anything else is an overnight ship at best.  Any changes I make now would not get a full rehearsal-though I could play through. Just something about not testing it with everything else running makes me uneasy.
« Last Edit: December 09, 2015, 08:32:36 am by Stephen Swaffer »
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Steve Swaffer

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Re: Logics crashing on playback
« Reply #7 on: December 09, 2015, 08:54:55 am »

Freezing trax turns them into audio files. Doesn't make any sense to me why they wouldn't cause a lockup when playing them normally does. 30 % cpu sounds very high if all you're playing is audio trax. There must be plugins involved or possibly other apps running as well.
Not sure how you're summing the stereo to mono. I'd probably try leaving it mono and summing at the board.
Unfortunately problems like this are hard to troubleshoot. Look for a common factor. Does it happen at the same place? Are there only certain trax playing at that time?
Another tip is to keep the computer on a UPS. It probably won't solve the issue but I sleep better during the show with one on my Mac. ☺
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Stephen Swaffer

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Re: Logics crashing on playback
« Reply #8 on: December 09, 2015, 08:28:48 pm »

There is one place that it almost always crashes-we have background music playing along with a narration, then we dramatically change gears adding in a couple of tracks of sound effects (wind/rain/thunder)-what is curious to me is that even on slower machines, when I back up and play it usually would play through.  But it has overloaded with just 2 tracks playing in other places.

Stereo to mono is just changing output setting from stereo to mono on the track.  Summing at the mixer is not an option-don't have enough left over channels.

I plan to shop for and invest in a UPS for the Mac and the QU-32.  We do this program as a "gift to the community" -we take an offering because some people want to help out with the cost, but really don't ask or expect anything.  But it can be stressful for our financial manager right now with all the money going out-so it will have to wait.  I do know the power in the media booth is properly installed (might be the only place in our building!) and even external to the building we have a very good situation so I think we will be OK-though I know anything can happen.

Plug ins is a very strong possibility and know he uses plug ins quite a bit.  That is probably the biggest difference here-I have always kept it simple, he does a lot of recording work using compression/normalization, etc that I never used.  Obviously, for creating a recording he doesn't have to be concerned with real time performance either.

Frozen tracks off the Extreme has worked so far.  Just have to make it through 6 times this weekend.  At least it crashes somewhat gracefully and will restart right away.

Obviously, we need to do something different on the creation side next year.

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Steve Swaffer

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Re: Logics crashing on playback
« Reply #9 on: December 09, 2015, 08:47:05 pm »

If I was down there and could see and analyze your system I might be able to help. Is there a Logic "expert" that you could call in? If there is such a thing lol.
Logic is not an easy app to use. To keep it running stable in a live situation is not for casual users. There's also other things that come up. You really have to know about your computer, storage, midi, sample rates etc.
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