Questions about Gigfile size and RAM management

I started using GigPerformer a few weeks ago and it’s my first experience in the world of soft-synths.

My machine is a Macbook Pro 3.5Ghz 16GB RAM, running MacOS Mojave

My band’s setlist is extensive and I’ve been working on my project/GigFile, which already has around 100 rackspaces and should grow a little more. At the moment, the size of my gigfile is about 160MB and it takes about 3 minutes to load.

Recently I started to realise that my rackspaces were producing noise. Initially this only happened in the rackspaces where a lot of processing power was required (CPU usage was close to or above 50 per cent) but suddenly they all started producing noise.

In particular, the rackspaces where “session horns pro”(kontakt) was used produced a lot of noise and gave me the feeling that the samples weren’t all loaded immediately when I accessed those rackspaces because after playing a few times on the keys where that instrument was assigned, it seemed to play normally.

I went crazy, not understanding the cause of this problem, reviewing the building of each rackspace, the connections, plugins, effects, everything, trying to find the culprit. I couldn’t figure out what had happened, so I decided to load an older (smaller) gigfile and the noise was gonne.

I then thought that the problem might lie in the size of my GigFile and my machine’s difficulties in dealing with all the rackspaces at the same time, and that it might be a problem related to RAM management, even though I had always been told that 16GB should be more than enough.

Then, I enabeled “predictive loading” with my most recent gigfile and everything was ok, which led me to conclude that it was indeed a problem with my machine handling all the rackspaces at the same time.

I then remembered a tip I found here about reducing the size of samples for kontakt, purging the samples completely and playing only the notes needed and saving them as a new instrument.

I did this with my “Session Horns Pro” library, so that this plugin, which used to take up almost 0.7GB on each racksape it was used on, now only needs around 50 MB, more than 10 times less! Considering that I was using this library in 10 rackspaces, I did this procedure in each of these rackspaces, which was supposed to allow me to reduce the amount of data loaded into RAM by around 6 GB!

After making this adjustment, I saved my Gigfile and restarted GigPerformer without predictive loading. Result: Noise again (and again problems with the “session horn pro” brass sound, choking in the first few seconds as if it was missing samples).

What am I missing here anyway? If I significantly reduced the size of the kontakt library I was using, then that should relieve the RAM and my computer should be able to process my rackspaces without problems, but that’s not what happened.

So I ask:

  • Is there any I can find out the total amount of RAM GP is using?
  • Is there any way to know how much RAM each individual rackspace is using?
  • Isn’t 16 GB of RAM enough to handle a gigfile with a little more than 100 rackspaces (and 160 MB in size)?
  • Wouldn’t a machine identical to mine but with 32GB RAM have this problem?

Thanks for your contributions (and sorry for the long post).

Did you try using predictive load?
Do you know how to purge not used samples on Kontakt?
You can save tons of RAM used.

Did you read what I wrote? I did all of that but the problem remains.
No problems if I use preditive loading, but that is not an option in my band because we have a very flexible setlist

For me on my Windows machine, 16GB was not enough. I used 32 and then got a new (also) Windows machine with 64 GB ram (upgradeable up to 128 GB). 64 seems just fine. (I think one of David’s tricks (and a great insight I am following more) is to use physically modeled sounds instead of heavy sample-based sounds whenever he can. So, for example, he uses a lot of SWAM modeled instruments, Pianoteq pianos, as well as (I think) Arturia V Collection, etc. So, I think he avoids heave sample-based instruments like Session Horns Pro).

As I understand it, when Ram is insufficient the machine tries to deal with it in a way that uses more CPU.

Kontakt ram purging can be very helpful.

If you use the same “sound” in many of your Session Horns Pro instances, you could try putting that plugin in the Global Rackspace so you only use one instance of it (with that particular sound). Then in your local rackspaces, you can set up a MIDI IN block and use OSC. You should be able to add other plugins or use different splits, etc. as much as you want.

So, maybe try that. I spent a half day moving a bunch of Session Horns (not pro) instances (and a violin plugin I use a lot) from individual rackspaces to the Global Rackspace and I think it helped.

Here is the thread where I discuss it:

[Caveat, David is one of the developers of GP. There are other people on the forum who really know a lot. I consider myself around mid-range in knowledge, depending upon the issue (e.g., I am a scripting ignoramus.) So, they (including Paul) know more than me.


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Sorry I was too fast.
Do you use the same Kontakt Session Horns Pro in different rackspaces?
Did you try with different Versions of Kontakt, VST, AU, VST3?

Which version of Kontakt are you using?

  • Is there any I can find out the total amount of RAM GP is using?
    You can take a look at the activity monitor.

When is this noise produced?
When you first play notes?

Are you using Kontakt Memory Server
How looks your DFD settings?
Did you enable Multi Core in Kontakt?

Wow, thats a lot of questions :slight_smile:
The noise is produced in every rackspaces now, if I load my whole gigfile.

If I use a “not so big” gigfile (older file with about 90 rackspaces) the noise comes only when I play the Session Horns Pro brass sound, and only when I play the first notes of each key (as if the samples where missing).

About the kontakt questions:

I am away from my machine now, so I cant say exactly the kontakt version. I think it is 6.5, but, anyway, its the most updated version i can run with my Mojave MacOS:

I know nothing about kontakt memory server, could you enlight me about that?

I also dont know what you mean by DFD settings and I dont know if multi core is enabeled (or how to enable or disable it)

DFD means Direct From Disk, which means that Kontakt pulls the samples in directly from your hard drive (or SSD) to play them and does not use up RAM significantly.


Thad, I thought that Memory Server didn’t work on 64-bit machines – at least NI has said that in the past - though if that’s true, I’m not sure why they leave the option there.

Yes, my kontakt libraries are stored on my internal SSD

Even when in the actual rackspace Session Horns Pro is not used?

Hi, First 16GB I don’t think is enough RAM for almost anything on Kontakt or any Sample library VST. Suggestion to replace Sample libraries by Physical Modeling is gonna give you lots of problems with CPU use, so in that case a mix of the two can be helpful. If your machine supports it the cheaper solution is more RAM, Mine have 64gb and also use Big virtual memory just in case because have fast SSD. If you have fast SSD not Sata but NVME you can go to Kontakt settings, “Memory” “override instrument preload size” reduce the slider to the minimum 6.00 kB and select the checkmark and you have to quit Kontakt and Gigperformer and open again to make it work. And also increase the Virtual memory if your SSD is fast. If your tracks are programmed you can purge the samples but if like me that I play live purge is of not use. To make it correctly you purge al Kontakt instruments and run the sequence complete and then save it.
and last at least from me is no matter how big is your Gigfile,it doesnt store samples if you have only one track with 20 kontakt instruments the gigfile will be very small but the Ram used Big.
Also the Noise you are referring maybe you need to increase the Buffer of your soundcard that will increase latency

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Also, please describe the noise. Is it a crackling sound?

that depends what range you are playing.
It makes no sense to load samples for example 5 octaves when you only play notes within for example 1 octave

that is not true for example Pianoteq or Lounge Lizard or Blue3

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Yes. As I move to another rackspace, it will produce noises.
The only two ways I can use GP with my setup now are:.

  • split my gig file into 2 smaller gig files or
  • use preditive load

Yes, crackling sounds and glitches

Unfortunatelly my Mac is not upgradeable and its SSD is also small (256 GB).
I considering buying a new (used) machine. A i9 with 32 GB RAM

If you really intend to play the same part every time, I think purge works well. Run through the parts several times while intentionally trying vary the velocities.

But, if you are freely improvising or (as I often do) you try to reuse rackspaces, I think it does not work so well.

I suppose I wonder whether it is always better to purge Kontatk and create a new rackspace or not to purge and reuse the rackspace (with the option of putting the plugin in the Global Rackspace).

When you completely remove Kontakt, then no issue occurs?