Migrating to Apple silicon - issues, solutions, trouble-shooting

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strettara
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Migrating to Apple silicon - issues, solutions, trouble-shooting

Post by strettara »

===Moderator Insertion===

It was suggested that this could be helpful to those living on the edge and migrating to the new Apple processors.

I'll keep this 'stickied' until it has either run its course or is no longer useful.

Kent

===

I haven't seen a dedicated thread on this so I thought it might be good to have a thread to collect user reports on issues and solutions here, given that a lot of people are probably considering this option right now.

So my setup is very simple: I'm running Reaper on a 2013 mbp pro 13" retina and in recent months I've been getting a lot more fan noise than before (although putting it on a tilt-up wireframe style stand has mitigated that considerably) and in general it has been running slower than it used to. It's seen a lot of use over the six years I've had it. I'd like to retire it and use it to replace the far older (12 year old) windows desktop I use for work, which is really starting to struggle after serving me very well all this time.

So: Reaper, Pianoteq, Aalto and Microtonic, those are my audio applicatios and vst's. But I'm thinking of buying into Komplete and the S61 controller.

I know it's too early to be expecting native versions of these on the M1 mac (I'd go for the mini) but has anyone experienced issues with versions running under Rosetta 2? Is it still to early to expect everything to just work? I'm using a cheap Behringer interface which is class compliant and I expect that should work ok (I'd like to upgrade it eventually but that's further down the road). My only other hardware devices are a VPC1 midi keyboard and a Keystep Pro.

My main reasons for wanting to get a new computer is just that my old computers really are old and increasingly noisy, and I want to run much more processor intensive applications on them, and I'd also like to add a second screen to my workstation. It seems the M1 mac mini would be the perfect solution, especially in terms of performance for money - but am I taking a big risk of having to wait for everything to be compatible in a few months time?

Anyway I'd love to hear people's thoughts and experience.
Last edited by strettara on Mon Mar 08, 2021 5:30 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: transitioning to Apple silicon

Post by tioJim »

I bought a new 13" MBP (for music) in June about 5 minutes before they announced Apple Silicon which was kind of annoying (though there are still many advantages to staying on Apple Intel for the short-term) but on the other hand the new M1 MBP only offers 2 Thunderbolt ports and 16Gb RAM. The MBP I bought has 4 ports and 32Gb RAM, and for large sample libraries it's the quantity that matters more than anything.

It's still an amazing machine and I'm happy to sit back and wait for others to be the M1 guinea pigs and will probably jump in in a year or two!

Stability and compatibility are the two most important issues for a system supporting a DAW and I think Intel silicon will still be the best bet for that for at least the next 6-12 months.
So my setup is very simple:
If it really is that simple (meaning, is there anything you've missed/overlooked) then you can probably get definitive answers on compatibility and useability easily enough and if it's all lights are green I'd go for it! The M1 mini looks tasty indeed.
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Re: transitioning to Apple silicon

Post by CalvaryBand »

I have one of the new Mac Mini M1s. Ableton is not working so well, mostly with random audio drop-outs at any buffer size but also with very high CPU usage. I would say it is borderline unusable, especially if you're using Ableton in performances.

The complete inverse experience can be found in Logic, with no issues in any of the VSTs I use and a seemingly endless amount of available CPU power and no audio issues.

My audio interface is a RME Digiface USB. In terms of AU, I use:

-Brainworx stuff
-Valhalla stuff
-Korg stuff
-Eventide stuff
-Expert Sleepers stuff
-TAL stuff

All of those work fine. All of my USB controllers that worked on my retired Hackintosh also work here, including an old E-mu MIDI interface and Vestax DJ controller.
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Re: transitioning to Apple silicon

Post by oisin »

i bought a last gen macbook pro a couple weeks after they announced the m1s, mostly because my old one was dying and i need to keep working. stability is also key for me with live shows etc. so dont want to experiment. this mbp is such an upgrade that it should hold me over the 2 or 3 years for when evertyhing is running native on the m1s (i hope!).
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Re: transitioning to Apple silicon

Post by rowsbywoof »

It might be a little too early to upgrade to Silicone. Especially if you have tools you rely on that you know aren't going to be getting upgraded to native Silicone apps soon. NI will, for sure, Reaper will, for sure, but I'm guessing for a while your VSTs are going to be a mix of things that work and don't natively, and some may just not work period. On the other hand, Apple is all in on Silicone. We're hearing support for x86 is being completely cut in the not-really-that-too-distant future, so moving forward this will be the way. Apple will still support x86 Macs for the next few years, but if you're looking to upgrade now it really is a question: How long am I planning this next computer to last? It sounds like you are a slow upgrader... I am too. I still have a 2013 Mac Mini as well as my newer MBP (which is not Silicone and will not be replaced with a Silicone machine for a long time), but I am also two OS versions back right now and in no rush to upgrade and lose 32bit support/etc. If I was buying right now I'd be considering that, what do I want longevity wise out of this machine, knowing well and good that I'll be forced to hardware upgrade eventually, or completely be locked out of future OS updates, and this is a between-machine.
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Re: transitioning to Apple silicon

Post by dubonaire »

Sweetwater maintains comprehensive Mac compatibility hyperlink pages in its knowledge base which are very useful. The best thing to do is check out all your product makers' compatibility statements and follow their advice.

I bought a spec'd out last gen Mac Mini for the studio in February this year and it runs like a dream. I'm still on Mojave. I tend to wait a while before I change OS.

Rosetta 2 has been reported to slow down or cause problems with some products I own. Unless I really had no choice, I wouldn't buy an Apple Silicon machine until the products I use have given the OK, which will probably happen next year. If I had the choice, I would wait until then.
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Re: transitioning to Apple silicon

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strettara wrote: Mon Dec 21, 2020 1:34 am So my setup is very simple: I'm running Reaper on a 2013 mbp pro 13" retina and in recent months I've been getting a lot more fan noise than before (although putting it on a tilt-up wireframe style stand has mitigated that considerably) and in general it has been running slower than it used to.
All laptops with fans need to be disassembled at least every 6 months to clean the dust out of the heat pipe heatsinks. It literally starts to form almost a woven cloth of thick dust across it after that time period. All laptops will see performance declines do to processor thermal throttling from the heat build up.

Given that I've known about this issue for 15 years and manufacturers still don't make it easy to clean the heatsink fins makes me think they do it on purpose. Your laptop gets slower, so you think "time to buy a new one".
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Re: transitioning to Apple silicon

Post by Funky40 »

dubonaire wrote: Mon Dec 21, 2020 5:56 pm I wouldn't buy an Apple Silicon machine until the products I use have given the OK,
Thats the main point i´d say !

i run a macmini M1 since over 3 weeks now:
strettara wrote: Mon Dec 21, 2020 1:34 am So: Reaper, Pianoteq, Aalto and Microtonic, those are my audio applicatios and vst's. But I'm thinking of buying into Komplete and the S61 controller.

Anyway I'd love to hear people's thoughts and experience.
Reaper: is running with the Catalina build, there is also a Reaper ARM build ! but not recommended -by them- if you still use intel-based VSTs.
its not loading VST 3s though whne running REaper on a M1mac. ( see their notice)

Pianoteq: is running perfectly. They seem to work on a arm porting

Aalto: ,....can´t comment

Microtonic:, can´t comment, ...i just downloaded today the few Sonic charge plugins i have.
i´m not too optimistic on sonic charge. i don´t have the microtonic

ableton Live: ..i loaded the live11beta. Yeah, very high cPU usage, very early audio dropouts.
but i had a project going from another guy which was running normal (on Live10).
Seems there is some depencies of what excatly you are doing within Live

Fabfilter: was ported freshly to arm mac.

NI acess/Kontakt: there is a Beta of the NI access. i just installed it the other day and installed a few of their VST synths.
Waht i checked was working fine in *short* tests.

Plugin alliance: this was communicated early that those will run on rosetta2. and thats how it is. All perfectly fine !
unfiltered audio is for example running under the plugin alliance roof.

GigPerformer3: /VST Host) runs perfectly fine under Rosetta2.
i do MOST of my VST "work" within Gig performer3. ( i run the PA version)

Liquid sonics: works. Good Reverbs



VSTs i run *within gigperformer3* on my M1mini:
_ i´ve just shortly tested those, but was fine so far: Eventide, soundtoys, Native instruments, Serato sample, TAL,
_ working with those: Ina-GRM, Triitik, Liquid-sonics, Fabfilter, Plugin alliance, Moddart/ Pianoteq, surreal Machines ( problems to map CCS within GP3), U-HE, UVI, Valhalla, Waves factory, Output, AAS, Klanghelm, Cytomic, 2C Audio, Matt Tytels Vital Synth.
Arturia: not installed anything so far. ( i expect these to work)

( some of these were just used on *very short* testings.
some were used in 1-2 patches, .......but i "played" with them, ...not just doing very short tests.
some others are within every patch i do, working since weeks with them within GP3 )
( i have just 1 or 2 VSTs from some Manufacturers, and MANY from others / in general: i´m into experimental-glitch-advanced electronics............so, those things i have ;) )( ask, if you need a more specific more secure answer. )

problems on my M1 mac with:
Tonsturm Fereqshift: does not run or even show up on GP3, and iirc also on Reaper. But: it does show up and work with Live11
Aries Reverb: nogo on M1 mac
Numerology: i have only the demo. I´m totally fresh to it. I have only crashes when i try to make a own new patch






personally, i was able to run most of the for me *very* important VST-s.
i had only a few crashes when i was excessively switching audio buffers and audio interfaces within GP3.
other than that have i never had any bad glitches i´d say.

please note: I´ve not donne much with Reaper or Live10/11.........its not what i do ! (and: need to learn them bioth by fresh btw. )
on GP3: it seems to me, that what VST is running fine in a short test, would also run fine later on in the long term.
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Re: transitioning to Apple silicon

Post by Funky40 »

general Problems on M1 macs ?
there are reports vs. bluetooth keyboards and mouses other than original apple ones !
especially with logitech.
there is also some minor stuff ( apps opening on the wrong screen in a 2 screen setup for example / which i run)


only 2TB3 connections on the air/macbook ? ...guess the idea is that one had to buy a TB3 hub and walk from there :hmm:
i run my old TB2 hub on my M1mini.

audio interfaces:
i´ve tested 3: all working fine, even the VERY vheap 2channel Behringer which runs with a generic Driver or so.
No problems for me. seems all more easy than thought. Same for the above point


internal under the hood audio routing:
The "Loopback" app from Rogue amoeba is running.
I had to tinker within the security settings for this to get the needed "ACE" app running.
they have very clear instructions for that.
there was an update in the meantime ! can´t comment if the securoty hack is still needed or not.
so: i run "Loopback"* and also "Audio hijack".
"Blackhole" is not running. ( at least when i tryed)

Wave editors:
big trouble to find something that works ----> which suits my needs.
Wavelab is not running it seems ( not tryed to install)
everything i installed is...........oh well, somehwre between a nightmare and a toy.
Adobe´s "Audition" Audio editor seems to be a solution ( expensive, rent per month )
(edit: i have a own thread on that subject running in the software sub forum)
( DSP quattro is running, audacity too, audio finder also)


CPU power vs. audio uses ?
my "feel" is, its right now under rosetta2 less than some would have expected vs. the Benchmark ( cinebench R23 mainly, it seems).
can´t compare to a power machine !
i came from an old macmini2012

i run mostly VST-FX based patches within GP3. A entirely differnet task than producing within a DAW.
i run 12-14-16-18 just alone VSt-FX, regurarly. The GOOD FX. (thats without the vST instruments)
Nobody would do that within a DAW on one track i guess ( well, i´d do, haha)
i can run up to 16-20 FX easily, depends a little on the buffer. 128 samples will do.
with 16 FX should 64 samples work also.
----> this is within GP3, which runs explicitly on just one single core !
if i run several such patches i parallel -using then more cores- is the point where audio dropouts occur coming down.
But aboves scenario works also if i´d run 3 GP3 instances at the same time i´d guess.

for what i do could i immediately use double as much single core speed as the M1mac has. Thats a granted thing !
but since internal audio routing is working, can i work, by using two GP3 instances.
thats then: 1 instance alone for the instruments , another one alone for the FX.
With such patches can i go so far, .........thats good *for ALOTS* ! .....good for years of work finally. Thats also a granted thing.

and i have then some free cores available to run live11 or reaper beside it. for example for recordings.
i´ve not exactly donne this so far. just very little.

so, The M1mini, beeing a small box, VERY affordable, no problematic fan noises ( little fan noise is there), is it a VERY good experience so far for me.
( macmini M1, 8MB, 512GB SSD in my case / didn´t saw a need to opt for 16MB Ram)
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Re: transitioning to Apple silicon

Post by Funky40 »

to note:
Buffer sizes versus latencys versus CPU power needs is IMHO different on the M1 mac than we are used to.
This might differ between different apps and uses.
(and might depend also on whic PC you take as your reference. But i´m not the only one peceiving it as such )

making buffers smaller is less win in Latency than thought, while the increase in CPU power is also less.
Same goes the other way around.
the sweetspot area seems to be the 64samples to 128 samples range


Can´t tell of the latency as such is influenced by using rosetta2.
i had so far feels in both directions.

i´m fine with playing Pianoteq standalone. ( NOT beeing a trained Piano player)
and i´m also perfectly fine with what i´m doing within GP3, .....anyway playing with alots of FFT based FX,
which will induce automaticly some more Latency
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Re: transitioning to Apple silicon

Post by SynthBaron »

Seems like a lot of trouble to go through to pay to be a guinea pig while developers figure this stuff out. And once again a bunch of software & plug-ins you paid for go obsolete on the Mac platform due to Apple's constant messing with the OS/hardware.
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Re: transitioning to Apple silicon

Post by donato »

SynthBaron wrote: Tue Dec 22, 2020 10:40 am Seems like a lot of trouble to go through to pay to be a guinea pig while developers figure this stuff out. And once again a bunch of software & plug-ins you paid for go obsolete on the Mac platform due to Apple's constant messing with the OS/hardware.
If they go obsolete then that's on the software manufacturers IMO. It's a risk you also run with PC. If you support Apple as a manufacturer then support it. That's part of the deal/obligation. Most people don't upgrade OS anywhere near every year anyway when it comes to audio. These will basically eliminate any "value" of PC in my opinion as the horsepower will be as good or better than PC for comparable price, plus Apple computers actually hold some value on the used market. Combine that with the power/price of something like Logic Pro, I can see a mass switch over to Apple in the next few years. Add to that the ability to natively run cheap iPhone/iPad/iOS programs for even more value. Still probably not a great idea to switch over for audio purposes for a year or two while everyone catches up with compatibility.
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Re: transitioning to Apple silicon

Post by steviet »

I was about to switch over to the M1 macbook pro. I have a 15" MBP 2018, and it still has decent trade in value, and after watching some videos with Logic running an absurd amount of plugins on the new M1 chip, I almost pulled the trigger...

...then I thought about all my software plugins, and how even whispering the word "update" near my MBP throws everything completely out of whack. NI, Sound Toys, Overbridge, some Waves stuff... I use it all so heavily I decided to wait until they've all updated to Big Sur for the M1. Might cost me a bit more money when it comes time to switch, but it will save a bunch of headaches.
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Re: transitioning to Apple silicon

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SynthBaron wrote: Tue Dec 22, 2020 10:40 am Seems like a lot of trouble to go through to pay to be a guinea pig while developers figure this stuff out.
this is coming from where *exactly* ?
i don´t see your point. its kind of wishiwashi, no ?.....just transporting negative thinking to public,


its each ones own obligation to make some upfront research and to decide if there is any risk to get out a negative surprise or not,
when jumping on the M1 train. Thats why i post here, to help others to make their own decission.
But pointless points would i consider as beeing pointless ;)


i was waiting in fact since 3 years to get a more powerful PC, since i´m urgently in need of such !
And since i´m dependend on the Trackpad was i stuck to macs.
I was since two years every end of the year VERY close to get a macmini 2018.
this M1 mini was 40% less in price than a macmini 2018 would have been right now (now sold as (intel) macmini 2020),
and less than half the price if i had taken a 2018mini 1-2 years ago ( with 1TB SSD though)

the only real problem i have is the lack of wavelab, respectivly another good Audio Editor !
while i knew upfront that wavelab would not run, and much likely won´t do for a longer period of time, plus that i´d expect them to bringt it with a *expensive* update when it comes to M1/BigSur..........But thats a Steinberg specific problem ;)
it was a very good deal for me, and other than "that just mentioned point" a *only* good experience !


so, where´s the trouble ? and where´s the guinea pig ?
it was just a thing of some research to minimize the risk.
oh, yeah, the trouble was: 2 surf the topic extensively for 2 weeks
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Re: transitioning to Apple silicon

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SynthBaron wrote: Tue Dec 22, 2020 10:40 am Seems like a lot of trouble to go through to pay to be a guinea pig while developers figure this stuff out. And once again a bunch of software & plug-ins you paid for go obsolete on the Mac platform due to Apple's constant messing with the OS/hardware.
lol right-- please apple don't shatter the CPU bottleneck that's been present for well over a decade, we don't want faster comps! oh and definitely don't make them cheaper then they've ever cost for 10x the power... you bastards!

they haven't switched CPU hardware since 2006 when they went intel. if i were a software developer i'd be excited as hell about getting my stuff working on this platform, the potential is mind boggling. i'm definitely getting one and will patiently wait for developers to catch up. can't wait for Madrona Labs stuff on M1... 8+ polyphonic kaivos yes sir!
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Re: transitioning to Apple silicon

Post by kons »

Got a bottom of the line M1 mac mini... on an edu deal... it is fantastic so far. 8gb ram runs like 32gb on an intelmachine. 256 SSD is pitiful... and Apple are taking the piss with their SSD/RAM upgrade prices... i have a 1tera tb3 ext ssd hooked up as my solution... but the non-upgradeableness is at least a genuine issue now because the SSD and RAM is integrated on the same wafer... not the bullshit like before with soldered RAM on intel machines... an extra manufacturing step they put in to make your machine less flexible and reparable!!

Bitwig runs great. fast even under rosetta2
RME fireface800 a 12 year old audiobox!! runs great. thank you RME! had to get a thunderbolt3 to tb2 adapter... to connect to the tb2 to firewire adapter... it looks jenky but it seems stable so far (knock on wood)
eventide, ilok, valhalla etc... all working great.
my only issue is overbridge not installing... seems primarily a security problem with signed access to the OS for Elektron... but hey it took Elektron 5000 years to make overbridge work... so i am not optimistic... I only really use overbridge as more of a patch librarian anyway...

i will be happy if i can get 6 or 7 years of work out of this macmini... it does enough that i am finally at a stage where i don't feel in my use cases i feel the need for any more processing headroom. Never heard the fan yet... the sensor reports that i am rarely above 30C, the crazy minimal energy use compared to a mac tower or even intel mbp could easily pay for the machine over 6 to 7 years of 24h usage...
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Re: transitioning to Apple silicon

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SynthBaron wrote: Tue Dec 22, 2020 10:40 amAnd once again a bunch of software & plug-ins you paid for go obsolete on the Mac platform due to Apple's constant messing with the OS/hardware.
What "constant messing" are you talking about, the transition from 32 to 64 bit architecture that began more than a decade ago, seriously ? Fwiw, not a single software or peripheral device that I use has stopped working after an update in the last decade...
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Re: transitioning to Apple silicon

Post by Funky40 »

kons wrote: Tue Dec 22, 2020 12:01 pm
my only issue is overbridge not installing... seems primarily a security problem with signed access to the OS for Elektron... but hey it took Elektron 5000 years to make overbridge work... so i am not optimistic...
hmm, i need to check. i installed overbridge the other day,
i just loaded it into GP3 (vst.host) to look if it loads............but need to update my digitakt first i guess, to run it with the DT.
but i expect it to work ( NEVER used overbridge so far in general, but now with more power and my VST-Host could this become fun)
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Re: transitioning to Apple silicon

Post by SynthBaron »

usw wrote: Tue Dec 22, 2020 12:11 pm
SynthBaron wrote: Tue Dec 22, 2020 10:40 amAnd once again a bunch of software & plug-ins you paid for go obsolete on the Mac platform due to Apple's constant messing with the OS/hardware.
What "constant messing" are you talking about, the transition from 32 to 64 bit architecture that began more than a decade ago, seriously ? Fwiw, not a single software or peripheral device that I use has stopped working after an update in the last decade...
I'm talking something as simple as .1 OS version increments breaking everything before it, requiring new investments in software upgrades to be compatible. Unless you decide to freeze your MacOS version and disconnect it from the internet so you don't have to worry about security patches stopping, it's an almost yearly monetary investment in just keeping your software working at all.
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Re: transitioning to Apple silicon

Post by tioJim »

kons wrote: Tue Dec 22, 2020 12:01 pm 8gb ram runs like 32gb on an intelmachine.
Do you mean it can contain 32Gb of data?
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Re: transitioning to Apple silicon

Post by kons »

tioJim wrote: Tue Dec 22, 2020 3:04 pm
Do you mean it can contain 32Gb of data?
No. the 8GB seems to operate as well as 32GB on an intel under similarloads.
It runs with around the same 'RAM pressure' measurement as 32gb... not a scientific measurement... an impression... but a load of live tabs in Safari, Chrome and firefox at the same time, bitwig with some heavy spitfire orchestral sample sets... a few vids going on quicktime...
There are a lot of youtube vids discussing how Apple is achieving this out there...
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Re: transitioning to Apple silicon

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Funky40 wrote: Tue Dec 22, 2020 3:01 pm hmm, i need to check. i installed overbridge the other day,
i just loaded it into GP3 (vst.host) to look if it loads............but need to update my digitakt first i guess, to run it with the DT.
but i expect it to work ( NEVER used overbridge so far in general, but now with more power and my VST-Host could this become fun)
You can install overbridge and open it, but it won't 'see' or connect to the elektron hardware.
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Re: transitioning to Apple silicon

Post by ersatzplanet »

I have been debating this for a while. I currently have the latest Intel Mac Mini and I really like it. Although it is not my primary music machine (a 12-core cheese grater tower is for that), I do a lot of graphics work on it. I run Big Sur and have a external GPU (which the new M1 does not support) and with an external drive and 2 monitors, I still have a couple of ports left open that would not be there on the new M1. In fact with my current setup, I would need to get a dock to get as many ports as I have now. The Intel Mini is a good machine and will be supported for some time and my software all works great on it. They have been discounted in many places (especially for the season) and you can afford to trick one out with full memory and larger drives.
I will probably wait till there is a 16" MBP laptop or the possible Mini Tower before I get into the new Apple silicon. Currently my software works great and I have no problems. I will wait till more stuff is compatible and the systems get even more powerful.

I probably will be forced to get a Apple Silicon machine someday. Ableton's latest upgrade won't work on my music tower for instance, but v10 is fine for a while. It would work fine on the Intel Mini though. Basically, I used to be one of those guys that always got the latest, greatest, machine. I am now the guy who can wait till my rig doesn't work, or some software feature is just so great that I have to get the machine that will run it. Those haven't happened for me yet for Apple silicon.
Last edited by ersatzplanet on Tue Dec 22, 2020 4:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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donato
Wiggling with Experience
Posts: 295
Joined: Thu Apr 17, 2014 10:42 am

Re: transitioning to Apple silicon

Post by donato »

SynthBaron wrote: Tue Dec 22, 2020 3:03 pm
usw wrote: Tue Dec 22, 2020 12:11 pm
SynthBaron wrote: Tue Dec 22, 2020 10:40 amAnd once again a bunch of software & plug-ins you paid for go obsolete on the Mac platform due to Apple's constant messing with the OS/hardware.
What "constant messing" are you talking about, the transition from 32 to 64 bit architecture that began more than a decade ago, seriously ? Fwiw, not a single software or peripheral device that I use has stopped working after an update in the last decade...
I'm talking something as simple as .1 OS version increments breaking everything before it, requiring new investments in software upgrades to be compatible. Unless you decide to freeze your MacOS version and disconnect it from the internet so you don't have to worry about security patches stopping, it's an almost yearly monetary investment in just keeping your software working at all.
Disable from the internet? It's quite easy to turn off automatic updates.

I've been using Mac and computer audio together going on 15+ years and as long as I didn't upgrade the computer or OS within the first few months I've never had a single issue with compatibility. I do suspect this change to take longer.
Last edited by donato on Tue Dec 22, 2020 4:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.
rens
Common Wiggler
Posts: 122
Joined: Sat Dec 08, 2018 8:25 am
Location: London

Re: transitioning to Apple silicon

Post by rens »

Anyone tried an rme PCIe card (hDSPe) on an m1 machine yet?
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