Cubase 8.5 triggers high GPU usage on MBP - why??

Long story short - I just bought a new Mac Book Pro.

Before I checked out with some colleagues high how much strain Pro Tools and Logic was putting on their Mac Books to get an idea of how things would be running. Both told me that they can run quite intensive sessions without really hearing the fan much. (I have another post on the subject).

Aften migrating to Mac and upon having updated to 8.5 I noticed it wasn’t the case with me. Fans kicked in earlier than expected.

So today I installed Pro Tools 11 trial.

Setup a project that used roughly 50 % CPU in PT - showing about 175 % in activity monitor. Very light fan activity.

Loaded a project in Cubase with about the same CPU usage = much higher fan activity.

I then noticed than Cubase triggers the high performance discrete graphics while Pro Tools doesn’t.

That definitely explains the higher fan activity.

Question is: why does Cubase, an audio programme, use the high performance graphics card - creating more heat and consuming more power than it needs to??? Anybody from Steinberg development care to chime in?

Hi Lasso and welcome to Macbook world (no ofense) !

Check out the compatibility list below to find out that CP 8.5 is not listed.

I fully agree with you. Heating and fan overdrive starts when the performance GPU is activated.
What I notice with mine is that cooling and heating can happen very easily as long as I switch on and off and place it in ventilated spaces.

I was using the same CP 8.5 on windows 8/10 on an asus computer withou hearing any fan at all. Overloading the computer and still get away with that (that is another story but truth be told MBP and CP is not helping me).

Yesterday I decided to see how far this combination MBP 15 2015 and CP 8.5 would go by trying and mixing some music for one hour.
It was not funny at all. Temperature rose to 65 degrees C (SMC fan control reading) while the fan was kicking full blast with SMC fan control (quite handy tool).
At the beginning (while activity monitor ready 150-170% only for Cubase) the performance meter in Cubase was not even half way.
After a while (adding a bit of plugins from Steinberg, waves - tried the NX mixing for headphone) the CPU consumption kicked to 300% while the temperature was around 60 degrees C. After some 5 minutes dropouts started to happen and MBP performance started being affected seriously.

It is horrible and I think that steinberg should give us official statement.

Please check the picture attached for the readings I am getting from mine when using Cubase

Well it is

Still the performance needs optimization. I think both Steinberg and Apple has a stake in this. Many cross platform reports of poor graphics handling also when using external monitors.

It’s still happening here on Cubase 9 / MBP 15" mid 2017.

Surely cubase should have an option as to whether high perf GPU is forced or not. AFAIK only the video engine uses GPU acceleration anyway (and I never use the video playback engine).

I am going to raise a ticket - the heat and fans are getting on my nerves!


Hi, I am experiencing same situation with my cubase Pro 9 latest update on my mbp mid2015 I7 with 16go ram.
I am a beginner and I think I will switch to logic if I cannot solve this issue.
I cannot work in this condition. Really annoying.
Thanks in advance.