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Topic: Audio units over VST on Mac?

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  1. #1

    Question Audio units over VST on Mac?

    I was just wondering which format is better when using RMX Stylus on a Mac. I am using it in Ableton Live 5.
    Is there any evidence out there that AU is more or less efficient on a Mac than the use of VST? Or is one or the other much of a muchness? Obviously if one is better due to plugin start up time, memory/cpu usage it would be good to know then the appropriate plugin format could be utilised.
    Anyone know anything about this area?

    thanks in advance

  2. #2

    Re: Audio units over VST on Mac?

    I don't know, but it's an interesting question. Certainly if you're collecting plug-ins, I'd take AU over VST since it's built into the system - unless I used Cubase only.

    What I'd do is look at Activity Monitor, insert one at a time, and see whether one uses more memory and/or CPU. (Assuming you have both.)

  3. #3

    Thumbs up Re: Audio units over VST on Mac?

    [QUOTE=What I'd do is look at Activity Monitor, insert one at a time, and see whether one uses more memory and/or CPU. (Assuming you have both.)[/QUOTE]

    That's a very good idea Nick. Thanks. I will attempt this and report back results.

  4. #4

    Cool Re: Audio units over VST on Mac?

    A couple of quick comparisons have brought some interesting results.
    Hardware: G4 Dual 533mhz, 1.25GB ram, OSX 10.3.8 running Live 5.
    Set up using Stylus RMX and x2 tracks only (within RMX itself). Both plugins are the latest versions available.

    Utilsing a VST Stylus RMX plugin:
    CPU usage = 50% - 72%
    Threads = 18
    Real Memory = 281 mb
    Virtual memory = 763 mb

    Utilsing an AU Stylus RMX plugin:
    CPU usage = 23% - 39%
    Threads = 17
    Real Memory = 164mb
    Virtual memory = 700 mb

    Only one plugin was installed within the appropriate plugins folder at a time, the other was put away in a neutral place.

    Very interesting indeed.

    Early conclusion: when on a Mac it would appear that utilising audio units is the way the go. I have noticed other symtoms which would reinforce this notion - such that audio unit plug ins seem to work more smoothly than the equivalent VST plugin in some cases, (not all mind you but then I haven't tested all of them out as above). And in these cases it is noticeable in the way that certain functions of the plugin are flakier in VST form than the au form.

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