Ableton 12 and the use of efficiency and performance cores on M-processors

Discuss music production with Ableton Live.
KC FYX
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Ableton 12 and the use of efficiency and performance cores on M-processors

Post by KC FYX » Tue Nov 28, 2023 1:03 am

Hi all,

I am still waiting for being accepted as a beta tester but I am wondering how 12 behaves on silicon processors. Did anyone test the use of performance and efficiency cores with the beta? I know that 11 doesn't fully use any efficiency cores but only the performance cores. Daws like reaper do use both type of cores fully.
So I do hope someone tested the use of cores already on M-processors and let me know some data. (or maybe some developer here can shine some light on this)

Number of tracks on the different M-processors now. (11)
https://www.dropbox.com/s/l1z4p25nh60hp ... .58.16.png

The use of the cores with 11.
https://www.dropbox.com/s/04c6tcdm1eauk ... .58.59.png

[jur]
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Re: Ableton 12 and the use of efficiency and performance cores on M-processors

Post by [jur] » Tue Nov 28, 2023 2:11 am

Are you really experiencing any cpu issue with your silicon mac when using Live?
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KC FYX
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Re: Ableton 12 and the use of efficiency and performance cores on M-processors

Post by KC FYX » Tue Nov 28, 2023 2:24 am

[jur] wrote:
Tue Nov 28, 2023 2:11 am
Are you really experiencing any cpu issue with your silicon mac when using Live?
For my projects (with 11) I am not. But looking at the M-architecture of efficiency and performance cores, it's obvious Ableton is not using the cores fully at all and I am curious if that will be solved with 12. Many tests have shown M1 still performs better for audio than the M3 because of the switch from less performance cores to more efficiency cores. Ableton does use the performance cores and not the efficiency cores and Apple is adding more efficiency cores instead of performance cores. When both would be equally used, than that would double the tracks we could use on M-processors.

cids
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Re: Ableton 12 and the use of efficiency and performance cores on M-processors

Post by cids » Tue Nov 28, 2023 8:41 am

What buffer size are you using?
Mac Studio M2 Max and MacBook Pro M1

Genelec M030; Live 11.3.x; macOS Sonoma

UAD Apollo Twin

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[jur]
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Re: Ableton 12 and the use of efficiency and performance cores on M-processors

Post by [jur] » Tue Nov 28, 2023 11:00 am

KC FYX wrote:
Tue Nov 28, 2023 2:24 am
[jur] wrote:
Tue Nov 28, 2023 2:11 am
Are you really experiencing any cpu issue with your silicon mac when using Live?
For my projects (with 11) I am not.
Then, why bother??
In any case Live does utilize the efficiency cores, but only when it needs it, i.e when a project gets enormous to the point where the performance cores are fully utilized. You rarely or never see it because those machines are beasts.
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cids
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Re: Ableton 12 and the use of efficiency and performance cores on M-processors

Post by cids » Tue Nov 28, 2023 12:52 pm

KC FYX wrote:
Tue Nov 28, 2023 1:03 am
Hi all,

I am still waiting for being accepted as a beta tester but I am wondering how 12 behaves on silicon processors. Did anyone test the use of performance and efficiency cores with the beta? I know that 11 doesn't fully use any efficiency cores but only the performance cores. Daws like reaper do use both type of cores fully.
So I do hope someone tested the use of cores already on M-processors and let me know some data. (or maybe some developer here can shine some light on this)

Number of tracks on the different M-processors now. (11)
https://www.dropbox.com/s/l1z4p25nh60hp ... .58.16.png

The use of the cores with 11.
https://www.dropbox.com/s/04c6tcdm1eauk ... .58.59.png
@KC FYX

Did you recently post a YouTube video comparing different DAWs and Apple Silicon efficiency???
Mac Studio M2 Max and MacBook Pro M1

Genelec M030; Live 11.3.x; macOS Sonoma

UAD Apollo Twin

Ableton Push 2

KC FYX
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Nov 28, 2023 12:54 am

Re: Ableton 12 and the use of efficiency and performance cores on M-processors

Post by KC FYX » Wed Nov 29, 2023 3:25 am

[jur] wrote:
Tue Nov 28, 2023 11:00 am
KC FYX wrote:
Tue Nov 28, 2023 2:24 am
[jur] wrote:
Tue Nov 28, 2023 2:11 am
Are you really experiencing any cpu issue with your silicon mac when using Live?
For my projects (with 11) I am not.
Then, why bother??
In any case Live does utilize the efficiency cores, but only when it needs it, i.e when a project gets enormous to the point where the performance cores are fully utilized. You rarely or never see it because those machines are beasts.
I suggest you watch the video of James Zhan where he's loading as much tracks as possible showing if the DAW uses all cores or not and then get back on topic. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FSqX4bt9to4

KC FYX
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Re: Ableton 12 and the use of efficiency and performance cores on M-processors

Post by KC FYX » Wed Nov 29, 2023 3:26 am

cids wrote:
Tue Nov 28, 2023 12:52 pm
KC FYX wrote:
Tue Nov 28, 2023 1:03 am
Hi all,

I am still waiting for being accepted as a beta tester but I am wondering how 12 behaves on silicon processors. Did anyone test the use of performance and efficiency cores with the beta? I know that 11 doesn't fully use any efficiency cores but only the performance cores. Daws like reaper do use both type of cores fully.
So I do hope someone tested the use of cores already on M-processors and let me know some data. (or maybe some developer here can shine some light on this)

Number of tracks on the different M-processors now. (11)
https://www.dropbox.com/s/l1z4p25nh60hp ... .58.16.png

The use of the cores with 11.
https://www.dropbox.com/s/04c6tcdm1eauk ... .58.59.png
@KC FYX

Did you recently post a YouTube video comparing different DAWs and Apple Silicon efficiency???
Not me, James Zhan. Posted the link in the reply above this one.

TheMuldrew
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Re: Ableton 12 and the use of efficiency and performance cores on M-processors

Post by TheMuldrew » Wed Nov 29, 2023 8:15 am

[jur] wrote:
Tue Nov 28, 2023 11:00 am
KC FYX wrote:
Tue Nov 28, 2023 2:24 am
[jur] wrote:
Tue Nov 28, 2023 2:11 am
Are you really experiencing any cpu issue with your silicon mac when using Live?
For my projects (with 11) I am not.
Then, why bother??
In any case Live does utilize the efficiency cores, but only when it needs it, i.e when a project gets enormous to the point where the performance cores are fully utilized. You rarely or never see it because those machines are beasts.
I find this a somewhat disparaging reply, in particular from a forum moderator, for a perfectly legitimate question. I am also interested to know this because I need to buy a new computer, and whether or not Live 12 utilises the efficiency cores on Apple silicon has a big impact on which computer to buy. Zhan's very useful videos have shown that Ableton is not as efficient on these chips as other DAWs and that there is room for improvement - something which might have been done in 12.

[jur]
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Re: Ableton 12 and the use of efficiency and performance cores on M-processors

Post by [jur] » Wed Nov 29, 2023 2:22 pm

TheMuldrew wrote:
Wed Nov 29, 2023 8:15 am
[jur] wrote:
Tue Nov 28, 2023 11:00 am
KC FYX wrote:
Tue Nov 28, 2023 2:24 am


For my projects (with 11) I am not.
Then, why bother??
In any case Live does utilize the efficiency cores, but only when it needs it, i.e when a project gets enormous to the point where the performance cores are fully utilized. You rarely or never see it because those machines are beasts.
I find this a somewhat disparaging reply, in particular from a forum moderator, for a perfectly legitimate question. I am also interested to know this because I need to buy a new computer, and whether or not Live 12 utilises the efficiency cores on Apple silicon has a big impact on which computer to buy. Zhan's very useful videos have shown that Ableton is not as efficient on these chips as other DAWs and that there is room for improvement - something which might have been done in 12.
I looked at the video, and the reviewer is observing exactly what he just read in the Ableton article, but concludes the opposite...

I'm not try to saying the question isn't legitimate, sorry if it sounded like that. I just want to say: computer's power regarding making music today, especially since the M chips, is really not a topic anymore. Every year Apple launches a new M chip and it confuses people way too much, add to this Youtubers testing machines in absolutely unrealistic situations (and sometimes not understanding what they just read beforehand). It's nice that someone does this, but if you watch it then don't forget it.
As an example, I'm running a M1 machine with 16gb ram, doing music + sound design for films. I'm not even separating the tasks anymore (i.e I do music and sound design and editing in a single set) and I still haven't experienced a situation where I had to even freeze a single track.
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TheMuldrew
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Re: Ableton 12 and the use of efficiency and performance cores on M-processors

Post by TheMuldrew » Wed Nov 29, 2023 7:30 pm

[jur] wrote:
Wed Nov 29, 2023 2:22 pm
I looked at the video, and the reviewer is observing exactly what he just read in the Ableton article, but concludes the opposite...

I'm not try to saying the question isn't legitimate, sorry if it sounded like that. I just want to say: computer's power regarding making music today, especially since the M chips, is really not a topic anymore. Every year Apple launches a new M chip and it confuses people way too much, add to this Youtubers testing machines in absolutely unrealistic situations (and sometimes not understanding what they just read beforehand). It's nice that someone does this, but if you watch it then don't forget it.
As an example, I'm running a M1 machine with 16gb ram, doing music + sound design for films. I'm not even separating the tasks anymore (i.e I do music and sound design and editing in a single set) and I still haven't experienced a situation where I had to even freeze a single track.
Thank you for elaborating, and also for describing your own experiences with the M1. That is reassuring.

But Zhan's video still poses some questions. First, as you say, the continuous release of new Apple Silicon chips is confusing, and Apple is banking on that confusion to push sales. Amongst other things, the argument Zhan makes is: 1, that the M3 family is not necessarily better for Ableton (or other DAWs) than the previous versions and 2, that Max and Ultra chips are in no way better for using Ableton than the Pro chip. Neither are things that Apple, or Ableton for that matter (correct me if I'm wrong) make particularly clear, so users without detailed tech knowledge (like myself) depend on videos like these to work it out (and to be fair, most videos testing these chips are from folk working in video editing, so Zhan does make a useful contribution).

Of course you are right, it is completely unrealistic to use 70+ tracks of amp sim plugins in a set, but Zhan also admits that. I think his point is to test the limits, and based on those limits to work out which chip performs best.

So to me the OP's question remains unanswered - I would like to know what the best laptop is for using Ableton which I can currently afford (and which will last me the longest). From Zhan's video we learned that Ableton does not really use the efficiency cores of an Apple Silicon chip. Is this correct? Will it change with Live 12?
Last edited by TheMuldrew on Thu Nov 30, 2023 7:21 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Ableton 12 and the use of efficiency and performance cores on M-processors

Post by Tarekith » Wed Nov 29, 2023 9:26 pm

No one here will be able to answer that question I’m afraid.
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KC FYX
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Re: Ableton 12 and the use of efficiency and performance cores on M-processors

Post by KC FYX » Thu Nov 30, 2023 12:21 am

TheMuldrew wrote:
Wed Nov 29, 2023 8:15 am
[jur] wrote:
Tue Nov 28, 2023 11:00 am
KC FYX wrote:
Tue Nov 28, 2023 2:24 am


For my projects (with 11) I am not.
Then, why bother??
In any case Live does utilize the efficiency cores, but only when it needs it, i.e when a project gets enormous to the point where the performance cores are fully utilized. You rarely or never see it because those machines are beasts.
I find this a somewhat disparaging reply, in particular from a forum moderator, for a perfectly legitimate question. I am also interested to know this because I need to buy a new computer, and whether or not Live 12 utilises the efficiency cores on Apple silicon has a big impact on which computer to buy. Zhan's very useful videos have shown that Ableton is not as efficient on these chips as other DAWs and that there is room for improvement - something which might have been done in 12.
I was very disappointed too by the reply. It's from someone not exactly understanding how the different cores work and influence the performance of Ableton on a silicon machine.

KC FYX
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Re: Ableton 12 and the use of efficiency and performance cores on M-processors

Post by KC FYX » Thu Nov 30, 2023 12:24 am

Okay back to the basics. I was asking if Ableton 12 will use the efficiency cores in full (like reaper can do apparently) or will 12 have the same issues Live 11 has? 11 doesn't use the efficiency cores when needed. So simple question and it would be great if someone could actually answer the question about Live 12....

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Re: Ableton 12 and the use of efficiency and performance cores on M-processors

Post by [jur] » Thu Nov 30, 2023 12:44 am

KC FYX wrote:
Thu Nov 30, 2023 12:24 am
Okay back to the basics. I was asking if Ableton 12 will use the efficiency cores in full (like reaper can do apparently) or will 12 have the same issues Live 11 has? 11 doesn't use the efficiency cores when needed. So simple question and it would be great if someone could actually answer the question about Live 12....
Ok, sorry if I didn't answer your question. I was trying to question how relevant it is in real case scenario.
But to answer clearly: there's no official statement about changes in this area in L12.
And since I'm a nice person I also ran tests on my m1, and I can confirm that when running Live at its highest CPU load, the efficiency cores are not fully utilized. Their load does definitely increase, but not to their maximum (they're probably around 40% average), as opposed to the performance cores.
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