Logic has a Cubase Killer Feature

Logic introduced a killer new feature in its latest update that is quite possibly the MOST useful and the LEAST sexy - an ability for Logic to only activate necessary plugins for the project to play back. Combined with it’s already superior Kontakt AU performance, the performance gains should be pretty sizable. No more constantly managing templates to balance CPU performance and memory. Less ridiculously long save times with large Kontakt based templates.

Logic used to loose out to Cubase in this department because, while Logic’s AU spec could run more instances of Kontakt, you could’t disable a plugin completely. It’s samples would stay in memory. But now that you can both manually or automatically do so, template size is not an issue for Logic.

Cubase REALLY needs to catch up on these kind of under the hood features on the OS X side.

Sorry, I don’t understand how that could make sense. I’ve never heard of a virtual instrument plugin that uses cpu when it’s not in use. If that’s true, that sounds like a pretty serious bug in Kontakt. And, why would you have unused instances of a virtual instrument in a project?

It’s so you can load a several hundred track project template (i.e. for orchestral scores), and the plugins only use resources once they’re used. A very common workflow for composers, as the OP has pointed out you can have much less templates as things will dynamically load based on each project. So less balancing and compromising on the user part.

Logic checks if the plugin has any corresponding MIDI regions at project load. Saves a ton of time with large sample libraries that previously would load un-necessarily. It’s a great feature, but not something everyone benefits from.

Yes, I can see that. A project that was originally started from a large template, but doesn’t use all the tracks, would load faster. But, in my experience, composers for whom that is important use VEPro to leave the orchestral samples loaded at all times instead of loading/reloading the same samples when switching projects. In any case, I’d be surprised if this feature had an effect on cpu performance.

I don’t know as i don’t work on those kind of projects, but reading comments elsewhere it’s been very well received. The big problem with Logic is that you could previously only bypass a plugin and not actually disable it (Which Cubase can do).

One presumes that if you had a 200 track template and only 50 of those need to load then it’s a massive resource saver, CPU and RAM. I don’t know what the numbers are though, i’m a guitar, drums and bass guy! :slight_smile:

This sounds rather similar to Preferences > VST > PlugIns > “Suspend VST 3 PlugIn processing when no audio signals are received” ?

No, it’s different: With what they’re talking about here, both audio plugins and INSTRUMENT plugins don’t get enabled from the very beginning of starting a project if they aren’t being used at all in a project. As a composer I can see this being a very amazing feature to have, would save a lot of time every day here.

What you’re referring to is for VST3 plugins only and it suspends processing only when no audio is passing through, which is different from loading up tons of large CPU-hungry (especially with VST) plugins like Kontakt on a composing or production template, for example.

I wouldn’t say it’s a “Cubase killer”, but it’s a far smarter situation than we have with Cubase right now in this regard. I see it helping to attract more composers to Logic rather than Cubase (along with Logic being able to host far more plugins like Kontakt, etc.).

I’ve never heard of a virtual instrument plugin that uses cpu when it’s not in use. If that’s true, that sounds like a pretty serious bug in Kontakt.

Cubase’s CPU usage will steadily increase upon each empty instance of Kontakt loaded until it maxes out. And it will max out much faster then Logic does, because of the AU plugin’s spec ability to do exactly what you’re describing - prevent inactive plugins from using CPU power. VST 2 does not allow for this. It’s actually a new feature for VST 3 as well, which NI has yet to adopt for Kontakt.

Cubase still “won” in terms of being able to load larger templates, though, because of the Disable track feature (which you couldn’t do at all in Logic previously, severely limited template size.) Now Logic can not only disable tracks but dynamically disable them.

It’s true that many composers still use VEPro to get around these issues. I do as well, but I also use boat loads of Kontakt instruments within the DAW.

Ok, I take your point. In_Stereo.

You can save both templates and track exports with instrument tracks disabled, then enable when required, I guess that would get close to OP’s Logic feature, though not quite as efficient.

I don’t work from big templates as a rule. I tend to use “Import tracks from project” or “Track Archive” to pick up a sound palette of choice quickly.

That’s interesting. I don’t recall ever seeing that. I just loaded a few dozen instances of empty Kontakts, but the cpu usage didn’t change. I also loaded dozens of Alicia’s Keys and I don’t see any increase in cpu usage when doing that either. Is there anything special you have to do when loading them to see the problem? In any case, as I mentioned, a virtual instrument that uses cpu before you’ve sent it any midi notes has a serious bug :slight_smile:.

Cracks me up to read this…
Here’s one LOGIC killer feature CUBASE has…

CUBASE DOESNT make you sit there while Kontakt reloads samples if you change the sample rate.
Or as soon as you activate one of those kontskt tracks waitinge to be used…what a buzz kill that is.
I disagree with your point of being able to load up a million tracks,…because due to this loading/reload time there is no gain anyway…I don’t even have large projects and find this a nuisance with logic

Logic kinda had that behaviour already, with AUs they kinda sleep when not in use so CPU isn’t being used until they become active (I.e. an instrument note is triggered).

This however means that if the plugin introduces latency this is applied even when the plugin is in the sleep state or bypassed, as it’s primed ready to go at all times. Which is a problem in itself if you don’t understand how Logic works and experience unwanted latency OR the pdc is causing outboard audio to be out of sync due to bus latency.

The only way of manually disabling plugins in Logic so they’re not in this bypass/sleep state is to use low latency mode, which disables plugins based on a millisecond latency threshold that you can set and involves stopping playback to apply.

However, this new feature with Logic is different, it does not even LOAD the plugins unless they are an active part of the project (I.e. has region data associated with it). This means zero disk activity on load, and zero cpu/ram usage until you do something to activate them. Vastly increases project load times, while retaining template structures.

The party trick is that Logic is intelligently managing this for you, if you enabled and scratched out 10 instrument tracks, then decided not to use them them (I.e. deleted the MIDI region/performance), when the project was recalled those 10 tracks would not be loaded, yet they would fully retain the plugin setup information.

Each method has its pros and cons, of course. Cubase still has the edge on user/manual control imho. And Logic trying to be clever can be annoying when you have to wait for plugins to load AFTER project has loaded, sometimes WE are better at making these decisions so Cubase manual controls are preferred for my purposes.

I can see both your point and Logic’s. For me the Logic way would save me load-up times on templates, though I use VE Pro anyway because Cubase would start to choke about 3% into each project otherwise. :slight_smile:

That’s interesting. I don’t recall ever seeing that. I just loaded a few dozen instances of empty Kontakts, but the cpu usage didn’t change. I also loaded dozens of Alicia’s Keys and I don’t see any increase in cpu usage when doing that either. Is there anything special you have to do when loading them to see the problem? In any case, as I mentioned, a virtual instrument that uses cpu before you’ve sent it any midi notes has a serious bug > :slight_smile:

Well, you’re probably not using as many instances of Kontakt as us TV composers need to use. We’re in the hundreds of tracks for our templates, typically. I can load about 100-120 Kontakts empty before Cubase chokes on my system - which, honestly, would be enough, but I still get slammed with such massive save times and overall instability at that point, which is why I gotta still use VE Pro.

As a bit of a work around for now, there is the purge samples feature in Kontakt which only loads samples on the notes you play on them. That means, if you don’t use the instrument in your template, it won’t load anything into memory until you start playing it and then it will only load in the samples as you play them. It’s a work around you can try if you want to have a large template. It works best when loading the samples of an SSD. The other work around is Vienna Ensemble on slave computer as you have mentioned.


I agree with what you are saying. It sounds like a cool feature that Cubase should have. You should post it in the requested features section of the forum. They often impliment the best suggestions into Cubase. They wouldn’t want to see composers moving over to Logic.

I’m moving from Logic to Cubase, and Cubase has so many features that i wish Logic had, so i wouldn’t agree with that - they’re just different and it very much depends on your requirements.
i.e. If you want a multi-platform DAW then Logic isn’t killing anything, for example. After using Cubase for a while when i go back to Logic i immediately miss the chord track features, the EXS sampler is a relic, Midi FX can’t be printed into the sequencer and you can’t pick different MIDI Devices (Ports) input into specific tracks unless you open up the dated environment window and hardwire it.

Also the plugin suite/channel strip elements in Cubase really gives me a nice mix, Cubase reacts very much like an analog desk if i EQ boost or use limiters to compress - i don’t know what it’s doing, but i get much better results vs Logic and i’ve only been using it a few months. It just seems to clip differently pre-fader with more warmth, and while i don’t believe there’s differences in summing engines i can see why people claim that Cubase has a better mixing engine.

I adore Logic, longtime user, but Cubase is yielding the better final result - and i think that’s the best/only way to judge a DAW. Chord track and it’s integration into variaudio is an absolute dream for working out vocal parts that you can feed back to the vocalist, it’s easy to fall into singing the same basic phrases but it quickly allows you to try out new harmonies and phrases - review it, and then use that experimental phase to be the basis of a new vocal take - that’s massive for me.

What is the intention to start a “logic vs cubase” thread in a cubase forum (or in any forum of a vendor)?
To me this type of discussion is trolling and bullshit.
Users of whatever brand decide what they want to use and do use. Based on their individual preferences and needs. We are all free, aren’t we?

I wouldn’t judge this thread that hard if it were about a feature-suggestion (even though in the wrong forum then).

BR, Ernst

I subscribed to East West composer cloud and got rid of Kontakt. That’s made me much happier than switching to Logic. Kontakt needs a rewrite.

Didn’t know they done a cloud service but I’ve never used east west products before, that looks really interesting and fantastic price. Are you bouncing all to audio in case you find yourself without the plugins in future? That’s my only concern with cloud products.

Interestingly my experience is the complete opposite! I’m way happier now that I’ve gotten rid of any Play libraries, and using Kontakt only.