Is Reason MacOS performance worse than Windows performance?

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sunrise16v
Posts: 2
Joined: 15 Mar 2019

Post 15 Mar 2019

Hi,

This is my first post here, I am from Germany and use Reason since V2.5.
As the search did not finally answer my question, I try to describe it to you.
I use several computers for producing music with reason. My main Computer is a MacBook Pro Retina late 2013 with a Quad Core i7 (2,3 GHz) and 16 GB of RAM running macOS Mojave. Reason runs fine on it, a big project that I am working on right now shows just half of the DSP meter flashing and no drop outs, but CPU usage is high and the UI itself is kinda laggy (meters are not real time anymore and it seems slow in FPS).
At work I use a MacMini with a 4th Generation i5 Dual Core, 2,6 GHz and 16 GB RAM. When I load the project there (yes, sometimes I have time for playing around at work :-)), it runs really bad. The whole UI becomes unusable, Meters are working at 10 FPS or so and by the time the first verse is built up with all the instruments, VOX and effects, it says "Computer too slow to play song", even if I set the max CPU usage to 95%. No way of playing the song.
Now comes the "funny" (or sad?!) part. Yesterday I had to load the project on my 10 year old dell subnotebook, equipped with a 2,4 GHz Core2Duo SP9400, 8 GB RAM and Windows 7. I never thought that it would run the project from the experience with my macmini, but I just had to change some notes and export it again. Surprise: The song runs from start to finish without any dropouts and the UI stays usable and at least 30 FPS all the time. The DSP meter is at nearly full, but thats ok if you think of the old microarchitecture of the CPU. This Low Voltage-CPU is 5 generations older than the i5 in the MacMini! What's going on?

Is the performance of reason on mac really so much worse than on windows? I never noticed that in the past. I tried different settings on the macmini with multi core processing and hyper threading but no way to get it playing.

If this is really the case, did anyone of you experience the same? Say if my project get's even bigger, I have two choices wether to buy a new mac or buy a 4-5 year old PC? :-D

Some details to the song: About 11 instances of reFX Nexus2, 4 Europas, 2 UMPF Club Drums, 15 compressors, 4 De-Essers, 4 RV7000, 2 THE ECHOs, 7 Audio Tracks, 2 Neptunes for playing Harmonies and overall heavy automation. Should not be a problem for a Mac with an i5 if my old Dell can run it well.

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QVprod
Posts: 2250
Joined: 15 Jan 2015

Post 15 Mar 2019

It's not Mac OS per se. There's an issue with Reason and Retina screens. The solution is to run Reason in low res mode. Macs without the retina screen have no issues.
Opening apps in Low Resolution mode

If you notice that an app looks different than you expect on your Retina display, try opening the app using Low Resolution mode:

1. Quit the app if it's open.
2. In the Finder, choose Applications from the Go menu.
3. In the Applications folder that opens, click the app's icon so it's highlighted.
4. Choose Get Info from the File menu.
5. Place a checkmark next to "Open in Low Resolution"
6. Close the window and open the app again.
https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT202471

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eusti
Posts: 2391
Joined: 15 Jan 2015

Post 15 Mar 2019

QVprod wrote:
15 Mar 2019
It's not Mac OS per se. There's an issue with Reason and Retina screens. The solution is to run Reason in low res mode. Macs without the retina screen have no issues.


https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT202471
I don’t think that is the only issue. I experienced issues as well with my pre- retina 13“ MB-Pro vs a similarly (or even weaker) speced PC notebook. I had issues running a Reason combinator that ran quite easily on the PC. :(

D.

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ScuzzyEye
Posts: 1305
Joined: 15 Jan 2015

Post 15 Mar 2019

Yes, Macs are really bad at running Reason now. Apple has changed the graphics sub-system several times, and Reason sits in a poor place. MacOS expects programs that need fast screen updates to now use Metal for rendering. Programs that don't really need a lot of performance can write to the 2D screen buffer. But Apple now makes that screen buffer data in the format that the screen is set to. If you are using anything but sRGB, there's a conversion that has to happen with every update. That's every time a meter moves, and a full screen update, when scrolling the rack.

The quickest fix is to change your display type to sRGB. Colors won't look as nice, but Reason's graphic performance will increase dramatically.

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QVprod
Posts: 2250
Joined: 15 Jan 2015

Post 15 Mar 2019

eusti wrote:
15 Mar 2019
QVprod wrote:
15 Mar 2019
It's not Mac OS per se. There's an issue with Reason and Retina screens. The solution is to run Reason in low res mode. Macs without the retina screen have no issues.


https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT202471
I don’t think that is the only issue. I experienced issues as well with my pre- retina 13“ MB-Pro vs a similarly (or even weaker) speced PC notebook. I had issues running a Reason combinator that ran quite easily on the PC. :(

D.
Oddly enough I have no issues on my 2018 mac mini. I upgraded from a Mac Pro 1,1. I have a 2011 macbook pro as well and haven't noticed any issues on it either, granted I don't use Reason much on it.

sunrise16v
Posts: 2
Joined: 15 Mar 2019

Post 15 Mar 2019

eusti wrote:
15 Mar 2019
QVprod wrote:
15 Mar 2019
It's not Mac OS per se. There's an issue with Reason and Retina screens. The solution is to run Reason in low res mode. Macs without the retina screen have no issues.


https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT202471
I don’t think that is the only issue. I experienced issues as well with my pre- retina 13“ MB-Pro vs a similarly (or even weaker) speced PC notebook. I had issues running a Reason combinator that ran quite easily on the PC. :(

D.
Yes, my mentioned macmini has no retina screen. Sounds like I am not the only one.

I will try sRGB tomorrow, thanks @all.

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eusti
Posts: 2391
Joined: 15 Jan 2015

Post 15 Mar 2019

ScuzzyEye wrote:
15 Mar 2019
Yes, Macs are really bad at running Reason now. Apple has changed the graphics sub-system several times, and Reason sits in a poor place. MacOS expects programs that need fast screen updates to now use Metal for rendering. Programs that don't really need a lot of performance can write to the 2D screen buffer. But Apple now makes that screen buffer data in the format that the screen is set to. If you are using anything but sRGB, there's a conversion that has to happen with every update. That's every time a meter moves, and a full screen update, when scrolling the rack.

The quickest fix is to change your display type to sRGB. Colors won't look as nice, but Reason's graphic performance will increase dramatically.
Could you elaborate in regards to what version of OS X? I'm running 10.11.6 and sRGB seems to do nothing other than a very blueish color balance... :P

D.

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QVprod
Posts: 2250
Joined: 15 Jan 2015

Post 16 Mar 2019

sunrise16v wrote:
15 Mar 2019
eusti wrote:
15 Mar 2019


I don’t think that is the only issue. I experienced issues as well with my pre- retina 13“ MB-Pro vs a similarly (or even weaker) speced PC notebook. I had issues running a Reason combinator that ran quite easily on the PC. :(

D.
Yes, my mentioned macmini has no retina screen. Sounds like I am not the only one.

I will try sRGB tomorrow, thanks @all.
I don't know how I missed that you wrote mac mini. Apologies..

Fusion
Posts: 24
Joined: 24 Mar 2017

Post 16 Mar 2019

sunrise16v wrote:
15 Mar 2019
eusti wrote:
15 Mar 2019


I don’t think that is the only issue. I experienced issues as well with my pre- retina 13“ MB-Pro vs a similarly (or even weaker) speced PC notebook. I had issues running a Reason combinator that ran quite easily on the PC. :(

D.
Yes, my mentioned macmini has no retina screen. Sounds like I am not the only one.

I will try sRGB tomorrow, thanks @all.
I have problems since upgrading to 9 on a MacBook Pro 2012 i5 16gb so upgraded to a 15” 2015 MacBook I7 16gb top spec and the performance was roughly the same and now they want more money for a reason 10 upgrade to see if that has fixed the problem.

I am surprised this has been going on so long , maybe so we forget that the problem was in reason 9 or an OS X update around that time.

Nickdeanx
Posts: 3
Joined: 15 Mar 2019

Post 16 Mar 2019

I have a 2015 Macbook Pro, 16 gb RAM, running High Sierra, I've never had any issues with Reason's performance other than VSTs causing a ridiculous amount of pops and clicks.

Fusion
Posts: 24
Joined: 24 Mar 2017

Post 19 Mar 2019

Nickdeanx wrote:
16 Mar 2019
I have a 2015 Macbook Pro, 16 gb RAM, running High Sierra, I've never had any issues with Reason's performance other than VSTs causing a ridiculous amount of pops and clicks.
I guess either you have very basic projects, your lucky or you work for propellerheads.

I am guessing it has something to do with the retina macs as others have said. The coding behind reason must be really inefficient / Dated for them to take this long to fix something so simple. I believe most daws/ vsts had retina support years ago. I hope 11 sees a major overhaul to bring it up to date. I didn’t even think that retina support might be an issue when I bought my new MacBook as Retina displays had been around for ages at that time.

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adfielding
Posts: 510
Joined: 19 May 2015

Post 19 Mar 2019

This is purely anecdotal, but I'm pretty sure I noticed a dip in performance when I upgraded to Mojave, with no particularly useful features to compensate for it. I am not a fan.

That said, I did upgrade from El Capitan to Mojave which was quite a leap, so that could have had something to do with it. This was on a late-2013 non-Retina iMac, fwiw.

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esselfortium
Posts: 1208
Joined: 15 Jan 2015

Post 19 Mar 2019

adfielding wrote:
19 Mar 2019
This is purely anecdotal, but I'm pretty sure I noticed a dip in performance when I upgraded to Mojave, with no particularly useful features to compensate for it. I am not a fan.

That said, I did upgrade from El Capitan to Mojave which was quite a leap, so that could have had something to do with it. This was on a late-2013 non-Retina iMac, fwiw.
Depending on how much you had been keeping up with the incremental 10.x.x updates as they came out, the meltdown/spectre patch might have been partly to blame there (that is, if you only got the patch when you upgraded to Mojave).

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adfielding
Posts: 510
Joined: 19 May 2015

Post 19 Mar 2019

esselfortium wrote:
19 Mar 2019
adfielding wrote:
19 Mar 2019
This is purely anecdotal, but I'm pretty sure I noticed a dip in performance when I upgraded to Mojave, with no particularly useful features to compensate for it. I am not a fan.

That said, I did upgrade from El Capitan to Mojave which was quite a leap, so that could have had something to do with it. This was on a late-2013 non-Retina iMac, fwiw.
Depending on how much you had been keeping up with the incremental 10.x.x updates as they came out, the meltdown/spectre patch might have been partly to blame there (that is, if you only got the patch when you upgraded to Mojave).
Ohhhh yeah, I totally forgot about that. That is also a likely possibility.

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aeox
Posts: 2151
Joined: 23 Feb 2017
Location: Oregon

Post 19 Mar 2019

esselfortium wrote:
19 Mar 2019
adfielding wrote:
19 Mar 2019
This is purely anecdotal, but I'm pretty sure I noticed a dip in performance when I upgraded to Mojave, with no particularly useful features to compensate for it. I am not a fan.

That said, I did upgrade from El Capitan to Mojave which was quite a leap, so that could have had something to do with it. This was on a late-2013 non-Retina iMac, fwiw.
Depending on how much you had been keeping up with the incremental 10.x.x updates as they came out, the meltdown/spectre patch might have been partly to blame there (that is, if you only got the patch when you upgraded to Mojave).
This reminds me.. I still haven't updated my PC since all that happened just to avoid losing performance from the meltdown/spectre patch!

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