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Ahoy! I just bought 2 mac minis, now using VEP Virtual Instrument Plugins
Old 1st April 2014
  #91
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beni Shoga View Post
I'm intrigued, as I run Ableton Live and would love the opportunity to run multiple copies of Diva in divine mode. How many voices of Diva are you running simultaneously with those 8 instances, and is that in Divine mode, with the Multicore button highlighted? Diva is by far my heaviest CPU killing software, and my favourite one too.
I just ran an "All Diva, all divine" test for you... on each slave, I can run 16 instances of Diva in divine mode playing a 4-note polyphony chord sequence. I have my slaves set up so that they each run two instances of VEP5 - one 32 bit, and one 64 bit. Since there are two instances of VEP5 running on each slave, I limit each instance to 4 cores of CPU usage so the divide is equal. With all 16 instances playing 4 voices, each mac mini hits about 75-80% CPU usage, but it doesn't budge...no cracks or pops!!!

So that gives me 32 instances of Diva in divine mode each playing 4 notes of polyphony.That's without proccessing though, so you could proccess on the master if you really wanted all 32 instances running, or you could sacrifice a few of those instances for some proccessing which is what I would do. I didn't even bother trying more, but I bet it could handle a few more instances.

The Master cpu doesn't even budge. 2-3% max because there's nothing relying on it.

I am totally convinced that VEP5 is THE way to host plugins. Logic / Ableton / Cubase are just terrible at being CPU effecient when it comes to plugin hosting. From what I've seen so far, having a dedicated program designed to do JUST plugin hosting has allowed the program to be exponentially more effecient than trying to host plugins within a DAW.

I would even reccomend trying VEP5 with just one computer... host your plugins in it and run your DAW like normal, I bet you will see a significant CPU effeciency upgrade. It really is that good. I had no idea or I would have been doing it all this time.
Old 1st April 2014
  #92
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rekloos View Post
How does it work with midi? Say u run ableton/logic on mac and have a mackie controller and a apc40, how does the automatic controller assignment works? For example, when switching between tracks apc/mcu automatically gives u midi control over that tracks parameters so how would it handle plugs/vsts from the slave? Can apc/mcu be connected to the master and control the slave at the same time or do we need dedicated controllers connected to the slave?
It depends, but you don't need more than one controller on the master because MIDI is sent over the gigabit ethernet automatically.

Basic midi functions like pitch bend and mod wheel are automatically sent to VEP5 and work like normal. For auto-mapping on the APC 40, I imagine it wouldn't work so seamlessly. APC40 auto-mapping requires the midi controls to be in the "configure" area of the Live plugin, I haven't had an APC40 for a long time so I haven't used it with Live 9 so I don't know how it auto-maps to the midi CC's within the clip edit function. If the APC 40 in live 9 auto-maps to these functions, then they will automatically map to whatever you have set them to within VEP5.

For any regular midi controller, you just match the Midi CC with the defined Midi CC in VEP5 and you're off and running.
Old 2nd April 2014
  #93
Quote:
Originally Posted by Myrok View Post
I just ran an "All Diva, all divine" test for you... on each slave, I can run 16 instances of Diva in divine mode playing a 4-note polyphony chord sequence.
Thanks. That sounds fantastic. I think you've sold it to me. I want to wait until new Mac Minis come out before making a purchase, but in the meantime, I have a recent i3 Mini being used as a media server in the living room, so I may commandeer it to test out the demo. I guess it will be as simple as running an Ethernet cable between the two rooms and using Screen Sharing.
Old 2nd April 2014
  #94
Tui
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Myrok View Post
I would even reccomend trying VEP5 with just one computer... host your plugins in it and run your DAW like normal, I bet you will see a significant CPU effeciency upgrade. It really is that good. I had no idea or I would have been doing it all this time.
Have you tried it on one computer, and if not, would you mind giving it a shot, if it's not too much trouble? This could potentially be interesting to a lot of people.
Old 2nd April 2014
  #95
LAU
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Offline bounce

Hello,

Sounds great i wanted to do this but i couldnt find many real world use threads untill now.

I was wondering though:

Does the Vep5 solution offer offline bounce ?

Can you render a track with hosted instruments over network ?

Thanks!
Old 2nd April 2014
  #96
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LAU View Post
Hello,

Sounds great i wanted to do this but i couldnt find many real world use threads untill now.

I was wondering though:

Does the Vep5 solution offer offline bounce ?

Can you render a track with hosted instruments over network ?

Thanks!
Freeze + Flatten still works in Ableton, I can't vouch for the other DAWs
Old 2nd April 2014
  #97
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tui View Post
Have you tried it on one computer, and if not, would you mind giving it a shot, if it's not too much trouble? This could potentially be interesting to a lot of people.
I went ahead and tried it using Live 9. Interestingly enough I didn't see a real performance increase in terms of number of playable instances. My 2011 i7 macbook pro can run about 8-10 instances of Diva's default settings in divine mode either way before hitting the ceiling. The difference though, is that Ableton Live was still only at 4-5% even with all those instances playing in VEP, so you could perceive an increase in performance given the fact that you still have Ableton left to work with, it's not crippled by Diva's performance any longer... whether or not that's worth the $300 for VEP5 I don't know.
Old 2nd April 2014
  #98
Cool setup Myrock!
The Diva count is great! I'm on the edge of buying VEPro shortly.

Sorry for the slightly OT but can you tell me if a preset (instruments+plugs in its chain) in VEPro can be recalled via midi CC?
In fact outside of my studio setup, I had problem to run VSTIs in Ableton while playing backing tracks/loops (kind of controlerist live setup), cause the VSTIs made Ableton go over 50% causing crack and audio drop...
So maybe VEPro is a part of the solution if I can remotly control loading presets...
Old 2nd April 2014
  #99
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Quote:
Originally Posted by findingtheSound View Post
Cool setup Myrock!
The Diva count is great! I'm on the edge of buying VEPro shortly.

Sorry for the slightly OT but can you tell me if a preset (instruments+plugs in its chain) in VEPro can be recalled via midi CC?
In fact outside of my studio setup, I had problem to run VSTIs in Ableton while playing backing tracks/loops (kind of controlerist live setup), cause the VSTIs made Ableton go over 50% causing crack and audio drop...
So maybe VEPro is a part of the solution if I can remotly control loading presets...
I believe you can save an External Instrument"in live as a User instrument, and when you load up that isntrument it will load whatever plugins were on it when you saved it. I'm not sure if Live allows you to load a midi track with a midi cc, does it? If so, I assume it would be possible. Not sure if it can be done within VEP5 I doubt it although you can save plugin chains.
Old 2nd April 2014
  #100
LAU
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Myrok View Post
Freeze + Flatten still works in Ableton, I can't vouch for the other DAWs
Thanks for the quick response.
I do mean the audio export type of rendering.
Is it possible to export your whole mix or multitrack running VEP5 with two networked machines ?

Could you maybe try this for me ?


Thanks!
Old 2nd April 2014
  #101
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LAU View Post
Thanks for the quick response.
I do mean the audio export type of rendering.
Is it possible to export your whole mix or multitrack running VEP5 with two networked machines ?

Could you maybe try this for me ?


Thanks!
Yeah it is possible, otherwise VEP would be a bit pointless wouldn't it?
Old 2nd April 2014
  #102
Tui
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Myrok View Post
I went ahead and tried it using Live 9. Interestingly enough I didn't see a real performance increase in terms of number of playable instances. My 2011 i7 macbook pro can run about 8-10 instances of Diva's default settings in divine mode either way before hitting the ceiling. The difference though, is that Ableton Live was still only at 4-5% even with all those instances playing in VEP, so you could perceive an increase in performance given the fact that you still have Ableton left to work with, it's not crippled by Diva's performance any longer... whether or not that's worth the $300 for VEP5 I don't know.
Thanks!
Old 2nd April 2014
  #103
Interesting project...looks like a sweet solution...did you need 2x the mac mini or could you have survived with one? I might consider bumping my system with a 2012 mini...

Also readers dont forget - if you like using it - swapping Logic X for Ableton Live will give you a big bump in CPU power and ability to compose with less glitching...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Myrok View Post
The difference though, is that Ableton Live was still only at 4-5% even with all those instances playing in VEP, so you could perceive an increase in performance given the fact that you still have Ableton left to work with, it's not crippled by Diva's performance any longer... whether or not that's worth the $300 for VEP5 I don't know.
yes as per above - Live is not very efficient at using your available power and distributing over cores...when my Live sessions were full up - in activity monitor rarely was I using over 50%...Logic is better at this...but VEP seems an interesting option...
Old 2nd April 2014
  #104
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SWAN808 View Post
Interesting project...looks like a sweet solution...did you need 2x the mac mini or could you have survived with one? I might consider bumping my system with a 2012 mini...

Also readers dont forget - if you like using it - swapping Logic X for Ableton Live will give you a big bump in CPU power and ability to compose with less glitching...



yes as per above - Live is not very efficient at using your available power and distributing over cores...when my Live sessions were full up - in activity monitor rarely was I using over 50%...Logic is better at this...but VEP seems an interesting option...
I probably could have gotten away with one if I wanted to host some instruments on my macbook, but my goal is to have all instrument plugins on the mac minis and all processing by the macbook or the apollo, so I had to go with two ... plus, I was about to spend the money on a fully upgraded Imac but this route was cheaper... boy I'm happy I decided to go this route I can tell you that for sure.
Old 2nd April 2014
  #105
Quote:
Originally Posted by Myrok View Post
I probably could have gotten away with one if I wanted to host some instruments on my macbook, but my goal is to have all instrument plugins on the mac minis and all processing by the macbook or the apollo, so I had to go with two ... plus, I was about to spend the money on a fully upgraded Imac but this route was cheaper... boy I'm happy I decided to go this route I can tell you that for sure.
wow 2 minis was cheaper than an iMac?

I see that makes sense regarding instruments + processing...

what connections do you use from the MBP to apollo and monitoring, and what peripherals are you running?
Old 2nd April 2014
  #106
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Another question: how fast do you boot the setup and what does it entail?

Does VEP5 "remember" the connection between the computers or do you have to set it up every time you boot?

When I was using VEP on a single computer launching a Live preset with VEP would recall the "connection" just as long as an instance of VEP was running

I've got a bunch of full VEP drum mixes as Live presets and would be interested in using them via a secondary Mini to get some more headroom for the nMP. Using heavy processing on big instrument setups in low latency settings will kill any computer in no time
Old 2nd April 2014
  #107
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Just want to chime in with another quick 'thumbs up' for VEPro5. I run a slave PC connected to my 2010 MacPro (8 core, 2.6ghz). The cheap ($400) PC runs dozens of channels of orchestral libraries without breaking a sweat, leaving my Mac desktop free to deal with live audio and mixing duties. It's almost like the 'old days' of having banks of MIDI samplers, only now it's all in one PC with gigabytes of RAM and storage.

The only problems I've had are occasional stuck MIDI notes (apparently a Logic problem), and the fact that my PC is at a different desk a few feet away so sometimes I have to actually (GASP!) get up out of my chair!

The VEPro software is very well thought out, very powerful, clean and efficient, and the company offers excellent support. If only Apple were the same… sigh.
Old 2nd April 2014
  #108
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SWAN808 View Post
wow 2 minis was cheaper than an iMac?

I see that makes sense regarding instruments + processing...

what connections do you use from the MBP to apollo and monitoring, and what peripherals are you running?
The two fully upgraded minis cost me about $2600 all together, the fully upgraded imac would have been about $2700 or $2800 so it was an easy decision for me to make given all the extra proccessing power I got out of two minis.

The Apollo is connected to the macbook pro using direct thunderbolt connection.

I have a pegasus R4 Thunderbolt drive connected to Mini #1, which is shared over the gigabit ethernet connection by all three computers

I'm using a TP-Link gigabit ethernet switch to network the three machines

I'm using a simple $10 HDMI switch to go between the two minis, connected to the projector

And I'm running a USB switch that changes the second mouse and keyboard between Mini #1 and Mini #2

My Phantom X8 is the master controller for all plugins, connected via usb to my macbook pro.
Old 2nd April 2014
  #109
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brasco View Post
Another question: how fast do you boot the setup and what does it entail?

Does VEP5 "remember" the connection between the computers or do you have to set it up every time you boot?

When I was using VEP on a single computer launching a Live preset with VEP would recall the "connection" just as long as an instance of VEP was running

I've got a bunch of full VEP drum mixes as Live presets and would be interested in using them via a secondary Mini to get some more headroom for the nMP. Using heavy processing on big instrument setups in low latency settings will kill any computer in no time
I spent the time yesterday making a default Live set that consists of 16 instrument plugins per Mac Mini (Plus drum tracks and vocal tracks that will be hosted by my macbook pro). So when I open up ableton live, the saved settings of VEP5 automatically open on the slaved minis, and the whole proccess takes maybe 2 minutes max. It is extremely fast, much faster and easier than I expected it to be.

Yes, VEP5 is extremely "smart" and automatically remembers settings when you load up a saved set. There are several ways you can do it. The easiest way is to simply save your ableton set while VEP5 is up and running, and those settings will be saved. You can also save an "instance" of VEP5 with particular settings, so if you create a new Live set with no saved information and insert the VEP5 plugin, you can quickly recall an "instance" to load up those settings instead of a blank VEP5.

I certainly suggest you try it out. I was hitting the same walls with proccessing but that problem seems to be remedied by the dedicated plugin host on a slave machine.
Old 3rd April 2014
  #110
LAU
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Thanks!

Well untill now nobody coult tell me this wass possible or not im on pt11 hd myself but i do have ableton also, so at least that would work !

Quote:
Originally Posted by Myrok View Post
Yeah it is possible, otherwise VEP would be a bit pointless wouldn't it?
Old 30th April 2014
  #111
I Naugo / myrock, hope all is going well with your setup

Can you tell me (or someone in this thread) if Vepro can handle in one channel a VSTI in 32 bits followed by an AU mixing plugin in 64 bits?
In other words can you make a channel preset regardless of the kind of plugins running inside one channel of VEP?
Old 30th April 2014
  #112
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Quote:
Originally Posted by findingtheSound View Post
I Naugo / myrock, hope all is going well with your setup

Can you tell me (or someone in this thread) if Vepro can handle in one channel a VSTI in 32 bits followed by an AU mixing plugin in 64 bits?
In other words can you make a channel preset regardless of the kind of plugins running inside one channel of VEP?
The VE Pro servers run separately for 32 and 64 bit. You might be able to route internally from one instance to the other on your slave. If you check the forums on the VSL site, someone might already have answered your question.

Seriously, everyone with questions, head over to the VSL site, there's a separate forum for VE Pro.
Old 30th April 2014
  #113
Ok thanks will go see there!
Old 30th April 2014
  #114
Brb
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The mini is pretty old, apples bound to refresh it any minute now. But if your happy more power to ya
Old 3rd July 2014
  #115
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Is it possible to create a Mac farm and share resources on Logic x?
Old 4th July 2014
  #116
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Quote:
Originally Posted by planck View Post
Is it possible to create a Mac farm and share resources on Logic x?
Using VEP you can, LPX saw the end of the Logic Node app.

Old 7th July 2014
  #117
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Naugo View Post
Nope just one copy of the software with a key attached to each machine ($20 each)
You'll probably will just need a key for each Slave computer. After you install VE Pro 5 on the Master computer it won't need a key dongle.
Old 7th July 2014
  #118
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fastlanephil View Post
You'll probably will just need a key for each Slave computer. After you install VE Pro 5 on the Master computer it won't need a key dongle.
Yup this is true, no need for a dongle on the master
Old 9th July 2014
  #119
Gear Head
 

Hey Naugo,
Thanks for the rundown -- I'm currently building a similar rig.

But another question: what is your X8 on? Just a stand? I like how that looks sitting right under that long table. Looks great for composing
Old 10th July 2014
  #120
x99
Gear Nut
 

I'm trying to get my head around how plugins on the network are used other than automation. Lets see if I have this right...

One mini can be the main daw system, a second can be the 'slave'. Using remote desktop, the keyboard and mouse connected to the main system can be used to control the slave system. Is this correct? So if a synth is loaded to the slave mini, it would need to be edited using via remote desktop, unless you decided to have a second screen/ mouse/ keyboard set up in place.

Naugo, I saw you've updated from the projector (posted elsewhere on GS) but noted there is now MBP plus 2 screeen displays. I'm not sure if they're being accessed via remote desktop? I'd like to better understand that.

(Might be useful to include the updated pic in this thread to aid discussion, but I'm not sure which thread i saw it in)

Last edited by x99; 10th July 2014 at 10:12 AM.. Reason: correction
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