Hitting a wall with Maschine GPU Usage (Clipping, Glitches)

Eklethe Member Posts: 32 Member


I'm in a bit of a bind with my Maschine Mk3 setup. In particular, my full setup now is: a Maschine MK3, Maschine Jam, and a Komplete M32. I recently added the Jam and was really excited to have this complete Native Instruments setup for some recording projects.

Unfortunately, I'm getting popping, glitching, system overload when used in a DAW - the works. Basically when playing any Scene that contains more than 3-4 kits my Maschine app runs like trash. I've since unplugged both my M32 and Jam - it helps a bit, but I'm still experiencing issues, even when I've expanded my buffer size.


Here are the specs of my MacBook Pro:

OS: Big Sur

MacBook Pro (13-inch, 2017, Four Thunderbolt 3 Ports)

Processor: 3.5 GHz Dual-Core Intel Core i7

Memory: 16 GB 2133 MHz LPDDR3

Graphics: Intel Iris Plus Graphics 650 1536 MB

Storage: Running the Maschine app direct from my internal SSD, larger files such as kits, library and plugins are running from my external SSD (SanDisk 2TB Extreme PRO 2000mb/s write speed)


The wall I've hit: I can't upgrade to a more modern Mac because Native Instruments still hasn't created native compatibility with Monterey and the M1 chip. I can't imagine this situation working better in Rosetta...

My big question is simply: What do I do? Have any of you found any creative solutions to running more robust Maschine projects given the current hardware constraints?



  • Kubrak
    Kubrak Member Posts: 2,763 Expert

    2 CPU cores is not much these days.... :-((( Big buffer might help, make it as big as you can live with.....

    I guess M1 AS compatibility and VST3 should come soon (6-11 weeks) for most/all NI SW. So, you have to survive little longer... I am not on Mac, but many folks say NI works on Rosetta quite OK. But for sure, better to wait for AS native support....

  • Eklethe
    Eklethe Member Posts: 32 Member

    Thank you for your response, @Kubrak. Where did you see that native compatibility was happening in 6-11 weeks? I've been keeping an eye on it, but it's been over a year now without much update. :/

    Also curious, does Native Instruments equipment generally work better on PC? Maybe that's what I should consider instead of a new Mac this time around.

    Appreciate your guidance! :)

  • Kubrak
    Kubrak Member Posts: 2,763 Expert

    One of NI moderators of this forum wrote 1,5 months ago, that it will come in 3-4 months. So, it should be 1,5-2,5 months (6-11 weeks), now. If everything goes well...

    My guess is, that it will be "synchonized" with release of Komplete 14, which might come around that time, if 2year´s release pattern is kept on.

    I do not know about PC x Mac. Better to ask @JesterMgee, he has wide experience on the both platforms and gives IMHO unbiased opinion.

    One thing that is obvious is that Win platform maintains backward compatibility. The same code runs fine on several OS versions. In most cases. Also x86 Win platform seems to me to be cheaper than Mac one. Macs might have other benefits. M1 based Macs draw less electricity.

    If you decide to go to Win, I would recommend avoid Intel CPUs for few years. Intel does not have IMHO good times quite recently. AMD CPUs seem to be much better. Wait for AMD Zen4, that comes in month, or so.

  • JesterMgee
    JesterMgee Member Posts: 2,476 Expert

    Your experience right here is one reason I just have a preference for Windows where possible. Your machine is 5 years old and on the cusp of being useless for your needs already tho even at the time the decision for a dual core CPU to do large multi-threaded work like DAW processing wasn't a good one. It's always a tough decision when you look at the ****** pricing Apple have to step up to the next CPU/Ram/SSD size and it's always done in such a way that you just end up spending that extra $1k on top of what you planned just so you can actually install a program and maybe run it for more than a week.

    If you are already invested in the macOS land I would suggest staying there, especially if you do not have a good understanding of Windows performance and such. If you don't know what ASIO/WASAPI are on Windows and the differences between these, how to tweak Bios and performance settings in the OS to make things work the way you expect, stick with mac and just pay for the experience.

    If portability is needed (IMO) a macBook is probably a better choice all round. Not to say you cannot get a capable Windows laptop for the same cost but it's more of a gamble especially around the audio performance and you will need an external audio card where Core Audio is typically way better in performance on mac than Windows (tho Asio4All can "sometimes" solve this). One thing macBooks are is reliable and reasonably trouble free. The issues with macOS are almost always based around new OS releases and changes in how their OS and security works.

    If you are after something that you can really get the best performance out of and easily maintain and upgrade over a 10 year period, a PC tower cannot be beat (from my 30 year experience) but you will pay for this in time to learn how to tweak things and how to manage the OS in general. I am building a new PC once I get my tax return back because my main system is now 12 years old but can still run everything I throw at it because I have upgraded and maintained the components over time to squeeze everything out.

    Intel Vs AMD is not all that much of a concern, at the audio level both offer pretty good performance these days (tho I prefer Intel just because of past nightmares with audio performance) so it is more what kind cash you can afford and what it is all compatible with. More important is matching things that will work best together (RAM with MOBO with CPU) which can be soooooo hard to do and takes a lot of research of benchmarks etc. I have designed and then had to redesign my system 3 times now and am scrapping it and starting over because the market has changed since I started months ago and some things are no longer available or new versions are out. My expected top of the line system cost including a new copy of Win10 Pro, 32GB RAM, 1TB System OS (and many other drives I have already) and some kind of processor (undecided) with a GTX3080 (maybe) will be about $3200aud with almost half that cost just in the graphics card for games. But at another 10 years that's basically $320 per year + upgrade costs.

  • Jeremy_NI
    Jeremy_NI Customer Care Posts: 8,918 mod

    Sorry that I didn't find this post earlier. You should be fine with such a configuration. A few things to check.

    Make sure to give Full Disk Access to Maschine and your DAW: How to Enable Full Disk Access on macOS

    If you are using Kontakt instruments, where are the libraries stored ? On an external hard drive ? What format is that drive?

    What DAW are you using and with what audio settings ?

  • Kubrak
    Kubrak Member Posts: 2,763 Expert

    Regards AMD x Intel. Intels draw too much power, so that it is difficult to cool it. New Intels to come soon have power limit exceeding 400 W! Also new big.little architecture introduced in current (12th) generation may cause problems to programs and is not ideal for audio programs. Unless programmers really do the best to make it work on big.little... Without special treatment and optimization for big.little Intel CPUs might be a nightmare. OK, one may switch off little cores, but then.... Why to pay for those cores, if they are more trouble than benefit?

    Intel is struggleing past few years and it looks like will for few more... The fact that AMD gains more and more marketshare is not because it is cheaper, but because it is currently better choise.

  • D-One
    D-One Moderator Posts: 2,753 mod
    edited August 2022

    @Eklethe said:

    The wall I've hit: I can't upgrade to a more modern Mac because Native Instruments still hasn't created native compatibility with Monterey and the M1 chip. I can't imagine this situation working better in Rosetta...

    My M1 works fine and any compatibility it might have are worth it VS not being able to simply load 3-4 kits, you gotta pick your battles, if your current computer can't do the bare minimum worrying about native support is a bit odd. Rosetta-2 works very well. The higher-end M1 chips do seem to have more issues.

    @Eklethe said:

    Also curious, does Native Instruments equipment generally work better on PC? Maybe that's what I should consider instead of a new Mac this time around.

    I have both and it's the same as far as performance goes, if, of course, the HW is also the same or equivalent, the OS doesn't matter for performance in Audio. IMO you should pick based on what OS/platform you prefer especially if you use your laptop for more than Music. Windows/PC has a lot of advantages specifically on desktops but for laptops I'd say it's roughly the same for both platforms in today's age.

  • Eklethe
    Eklethe Member Posts: 32 Member

    Hi @Jeremy_NI ,

    Thank you for your response. I just enabled full disk access for my DAW and Maschine 2. I will update you here if that improves performance over the next week.

    In regards to my Kontakt instruments / where my libraries are stored:

    My instruments and libraries are stored on my External SSD, my apps (i.e. Maschine 2, Kontakt, Guitar Rig 6 etc.) are installed directly onto my internal SSD.

    My External SSD is a (SanDisk 2TB Extreme PRO 2000mb/s write speed), formatted as ExFat.

    Do you advise this setup to be changed in any way? Or my SSD to be formatted differently? Please let me know.

    Thank you!

  • Jeremy_NI
    Jeremy_NI Customer Care Posts: 8,918 mod

    @Eklethe ExFat is known to cause big performance issues. We recommend to format the external hard drives to APFS, as explained in this article: Notes on Hard Drive Formats on Mac Computers

    You should definitely re-format the drive, you should witness a drastic change of perfomance in Kontakt and Maschine.

  • Eklethe
    Eklethe Member Posts: 32 Member

    @Jeremy_NI good to know! I saw a slight bump yesterday by providing disk access. I will now reformat my external and report back on performance. Thank you for your support!

  • Eklethe
    Eklethe Member Posts: 32 Member

    @Jeremy_NI I've gone ahead and granted full disk access as well as reformatted my external to APFS and reinstalled all of my NI software on it fresh.

    While it works okay on Maschine 2's standalone app, if I add any effects the sound starts to clip still.

    Also, that same project is still clipping / glitching really bad when I run it inside Logic Pro to record.

    Are there any additional steps to mitigate this? Or is it just the constraints of my 2017 hardware?

    My CPU listed inside Maschine is still listed as such:

  • 6xes
    6xes Member Posts: 601 Pro
    edited September 2022

    when your computer begins to hit its limits as you so point out,,,

    a consideration is to get another computer and run in it Tandem...

    why constrain yourself to simply running audio on a single computer? *shrugs

    plenty of options out there... which can provide a cheaper alternative and better native support for what is becoming older hardware!!(people always selling older computers to upgrade to the flashy newer models - this is oppurtunity!!)

    the choice to buy a expensive single mega computer, is really up to you!!!!

    I tend to gravitate towards older,reliable&value for money but thats me!! *winks


  • Kubrak
    Kubrak Member Posts: 2,763 Expert
    edited September 2022

    And what DAW is able to use multi PC setup?


    Have you tried to increase audio buffer? Two cores is not much for music production at these days....

    AS native support should come within weeks (3-8), if NI plans have not changed. You might survive that time with huge audio buffer. Also you might freeze troublesome tracks...

  • Jeremy_NI
    Jeremy_NI Customer Care Posts: 8,918 mod

    Oh, I'm really sorry to hear you didn't get such an improvement after all this work. In Logic, have you tried a higher buffer size ? Have you checked these tips from Apple: https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT203930

    If this doesn't help, I'm afraid @Kubrak is right.

  • zamora.el@gmail.com
    [email protected] Member Posts: 1 Member

    I know this is an old thread but I was in the exact same dilemma with my 2014 Mac Mini, Monterey OS, i7 processor, 3ghz 16 mb ram running Cubase and Maschine, running 2 monitors. Everything ran fine separately, but once I opened Maschine inside Cubase, it immediately caused my system to lag and the audio to pop, skip, and crackle. After extensive research and trial and error, I finally fixed the problem. First, the main culprit is the Iris 1636 graphics card, not the processor. It's the weakest link in the chain. It's not designed to handle more than moderate gaming or the graphics within the audio programs. As soon as I lowered the resolution on both monitors, there was immediate improvement in performance. And if I narrowed the window size of the pop ups within the DAW, more improvement. I then raised the Focusrite sound card buffer in Cubase from 512 to 768. I also turned on ASIO guard and put it to High as suggested by a user. I also made sure to close any unused programs. I also increased the buffer size in Maschine. Now I have no issues regarding performance lag or loss of audio signal.

    I hope your problem has been resolved by now, but I just thought I'd add this in just in case.

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