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Old 06-05-2019, 10:54 PM   #1
sitruc
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Default Audio Glitch every 10 minutes during playback mac OS High Sierra

This has been driving me crazy for a while now (5 months).

I can't track down why my audio will pause almost exactly every 10 minutes.

Whatever is playing, a simple track with no plugins or an entire mix. The playback "glitches" for just enough to throw everything off and then keeps going. It seems to do with the time that I turn on my machine - as in if I turned it on at 9:37 then the glitch will happen around the "7" everytime (e.g. 47, 57, 07 etc.).

macOS 13.13.6 High Sierra
iMac Mid 2011
2.8 Ghz i7
32 GB memory
Apollo Twin Duo lightning
Reaper 5.978/64

Any ideas? Thanks.
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Old 06-09-2019, 04:51 PM   #2
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Check

File/Project Settings/ Advanced and look for Limit Project Length Stop Playback at. Make sure that box isnt checked. If it is, set your project length however long you need it to be, always more than what ya need of course
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Old 06-09-2019, 04:57 PM   #3
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Have you had a look at Activity monitor?

I don't see an Apple maintenance script running exactly every ten minutes, but it could be cloud related, or Time machine, or...
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Old 06-09-2019, 07:53 PM   #4
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Thanks for the help - So frustrating.

I just checked File/Project settings/Advanced and got excited when it said "10:00.00" but unfortunately the box wasn't checked so that doesn't seem to be it.

As far as activity monitor, I have watched it many times and can't seem to see anything that spikes when the drop outs happen.

Could it be that my Superior Drummer samples and Native Instruments libraries are on an external drive and it's "looking" or "checking" for those even though it's already loaded? I'm pretty sure the problem started before I moved to the external drive (firewire).

I'm going to create a project with one thing at a time I guess and see if I can narrow it down. I guess no known hiccup exists. It's difficult to replicate when it only happens every 10 minutes...
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Old 06-10-2019, 03:03 AM   #5
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The simplest test I can think off, is running without the FW disk for a while, if possible.

Could be a disk that's set to go to sleep after ten minutes...

Alternatively, see what the disk power settings are in System prefs?

I've always run audio Macs set to "never sleep" and only abandoned that habit a few months ago. No problems yet, but I'm troubleshooting an Audacity crash that only happens when my FF400 goes to sleep and then still after an hour or so and when Audacity has lots of projects open.
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Old 06-10-2019, 07:56 AM   #6
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Make sure your HD's are NOT set to Go to Sleep when possible as well in the system as well as your monitor and Mac
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Old 06-10-2019, 09:07 AM   #7
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could be reaper's autobackup - that's easy to check and you can set it to be only when stopped


or maybe it's time machine, or google drive, or dropbox, or backblaze ?
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Old 06-10-2019, 09:17 PM   #8
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Thanks for the suggestions -

I just double checked Reaper's autosave and it's marked "when stopped"

I double checked and I don't have Google Drive or Dropbox on this computer (I use the web only versions for this machine).

I looked at Time Machine and it's not on "Back Up Automatically" so it should be only when I click "Back Up Now," right? I can't see anything else that it would run an auto back up.

I DID find that I had "Put Hard Disks to Sleep when possible" checked in System prefs. but I don't know why that would happen while it's being used. I unchecked it just in case and will test.

Going to try disconnecting the external HDD after that.

Thanks again. Will report back...
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Old 06-11-2019, 04:37 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sitruc View Post
I looked at Time Machine and it's not on "Back Up Automatically" so it should be only when I click "Back Up Now," right? I can't see anything else that it would run an auto back up.
TM creates a cached copy of files to backup, even when it's set to manual. You need to switch it off to get rid of those.

I'd be surprised if it was TM, because it's at an exactly ten minutes interval, but it's one of the things I keep switched off for an audio machine.
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Old 06-26-2019, 06:26 PM   #10
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Sorry for the delay in responding...Thanks again for the thoughts.

I watch Activity Monitor but nothing seems to pop up around the glitch time.
I have Time Machine turned off - there's no back up drive associated with it now. There's not really an "off" box to check that I can see. It's not scheduled or anything either.

I'm running Performance Meter all the time now and noticed that the spikes can be seen and that the "Disk read" speed drops drastically when the glitch happens... I video recorded an example with Activity Monitor and Performance Meter in view while it glitched. I saw that Disk Read was usually hovering around 2.5 Mb/s and then drops to 714Kb/s and even looks like 56kb/s for a moment!

My plugins don't seem to spike or anything else...Seems like my 32gbs of ram are okay with the load

I could post the video if someone would be kind enough to look at it?

I've now learned to watch the clock and not do any "takes" during the time when it will glitch for that session. So frustrating!
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Old 06-27-2019, 02:50 AM   #11
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I've got no clue. But maybe the vid might shed some light?
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Old 06-27-2019, 07:11 PM   #12
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I've spent hours and hours on this just today - because I have to wait 10 minutes to see if whatever fix I tried worked. I wish I could replicate it otherwise.

I'm now playing a project with only an mp3 audio file loaded on one track and it's still happening.

I've noticed that if I set the audio buffer to 0 then the RT CPU spikes... see video 1:
https://www.dropbox.com/s/cz8x5jj61t....TRIM.MOV?dl=0

Why did I lower the buffer? I Read it on the forum somewhere here - yes, I'm grasping at straws to figure this out. One of the many things I've tried.

If I put the audio buffer back up to suggested 1200 then I get a big Media xruns jump when the glitch happens... see video 2:
https://www.dropbox.com/s/s0zjfdxetk....TRIM.MOV?dl=0

I also watched the Mac Terminal [command: top -o cpu](btw I'm over my head with this level of research but Google is my friend), just for a moment during the glitch it changes to Reaper being a "stuck" process. Some Googling showed that stuck processes aren't necessarily bad but it's something.

...as always. Thank you to any suggestions.
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Old 06-28-2019, 02:47 PM   #13
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You don't have a Fusion disk in that machine, I hope?

Supposing it's an SSD and not Fusion or spinning rust, it's starting to feel as if something's wrong with the SSD. I sometimes see this kind of stall with the older MB Pro's that have a slowly failing SATA cable. It's not regular, tho. These cases are very irregular and finally result in complete lockups.

Got an external disk to boot from? That would be the easiest way to test.
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Old 06-28-2019, 03:32 PM   #14
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@Cyrano - thanks for your help.
I indeed have an old plain spinning disk drive (not Fusion or SSD).
Here's an odd thing I noticed late last night that I'm currently (10 minutes at a time) trying to investigate:

If I open a new project and place a simple mp3 to play. I don't get a glitch.

In fact, I added Superior Drummer (I've thought that this might be the culprit because it was kind of sort of around the time I started using SD3 more that I "think" the glitches started) - no glitch thought.

I added Kontakt too - no glitches. In fact I couldn't replicate it now on the new new track...until this morning when I opened up that same session and, viola, it happened right on schedule.

Last night I thought it might have to do with saving the project but I just saved and didn't shut Reaper all the way down and re-open which is what I'm doing now.

Are you suggesting to boot the system from an external or just a Reaper portable install from an external drive?
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Old 06-28-2019, 03:58 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sitruc View Post
@Cyrano - thanks for your help.
I indeed have an old plain spinning disk drive (not Fusion or SSD).
OK, that rules out a number of things.

Quote:
Here's an odd thing I noticed late last night that I'm currently (10 minutes at a time) trying to investigate:

If I open a new project and place a simple mp3 to play. I don't get a glitch.

In fact, I added Superior Drummer (I've thought that this might be the culprit because it was kind of sort of around the time I started using SD3 more that I "think" the glitches started) - no glitch thought.

I added Kontakt too - no glitches. In fact I couldn't replicate it now on the new new track...until this morning when I opened up that same session and, viola, it happened right on schedule.

Last night I thought it might have to do with saving the project but I just saved and didn't shut Reaper all the way down and re-open which is what I'm doing now.
I'm baffled by the exact period: 10 mins. I'm used to irregular slowdowns, but I don't think I've ever seen one like this.

Quote:
Are you suggesting to boot the system from an external or just a Reaper portable install from an external drive?
Yes. That's the easiest way to rule out a problem with the disk itself. Boot from an external, install reaper, copy project, or create new one and test again.
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Old 06-28-2019, 04:20 PM   #16
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Okay, I'll need to create a boot drive here which will take some time to figure out (above my current knowledge level but I can Google)

More information to pinpoint my problem...
I created a new project like I did last night but this time with only an mp3 track playing (didn't add SD3 or Kontakt).
No glitch for 2 cycles playing (10 mins each),
No glitch after saving manually (1 cycle),
No glitch after letting it auto save (1 cycle),
No glitch after closing and reopening project (1 cycle),
No glitch after closing Reaper and reopening project (1 cycle)...

Restart computer, reopen Reaper and project - and it glitched now!
Why would it matter if my computer restarted when nothing else causes it? Just doesn't make sense.

I guess I'll try a different drive now.
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Old 06-29-2019, 02:52 PM   #17
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New information that might help someone if this happens to them?

I've been running Reaper off the internal MacHD and also saving/writing the files to that same drive.

I've discovered that if I run Reaper from my MacHd internal but save the files to an external drive, there's no glitch...so far (haven't done any long-term projects yet).

I installed Reaper on the external drive too and if use the portable installation and I play the project that's also on that same external drive, there's still no glitch.

If I use the portable installation and open the project located on the MacHD internal, there's a glitch.

So, obviously, it's something happening with the internal MacHD.

Question: If I update the internal drive, should I add an additional SDD, a new spinning drive, just add an SDD or do both?

Is there a problem writing/saving my reaper files to the same external disk that has my samples installed?

Not sure if I should do this or just start saving for a new machine. I'm currently tapped out on ports good enough for drives on this imac but also tapped out on money. ha!

For now, I'll run my files from my external and see what happens.
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Old 06-29-2019, 03:34 PM   #18
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Get a 50$ 60 GB SSD for MacOS and apps. Or a 65$ 120 GB. If you shop around, you'll even find a 480 GB for 70$.

Backup old HD. Reformat and us as project storage. If problem reappears, replace HD.

DIY is possible with a 2011 iMac. If it's worth it, is your call. I use a 2009 MB pro as daily driver. I wouldn't hesitate as current ones are bloody expensive.
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Old 06-30-2019, 09:37 AM   #19
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I recommend upgrading to a SSD for the internal system drive as well.

It sounds like the original HDD is slowing down to the point that it can't handle both whatever system thing comes along at intervals + the audio project.

I don't have a direct answer about what might be trying to shuttle data to/from that drive every 10 minutes either.

A 1TB SSD is $140 nowadays. (Crucial. One of the big reliable chip makers like Samsung. Same 5 year warranty as the cheaper Samsung EVO models.) A 240GB is $50.

It's a strongly strongly recommended upgrade. The 2011 and 2012 Macs are still the flagship models. Significantly better machines than any of the post Jobs models that followed!

If you want to run diagnostics for a warm and fuzzy first, the service diagnostic is ASD 3S145. People share this online FYI. Check out ifixit for holding your hand take apart guides.


Run projects from the internal system SSD. Use spinners for backup drives. Unless you need large data drives. (4TB or more)
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Old 07-01-2019, 11:29 AM   #20
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I pulled the trigger and will change out my spinner for an SSD. Thanks for the nudge forward. They are incredibly inexpensive and seem easy to install. Adding a secondary SSD is also an option but not as easy at all to install...maybe later. Gotta love the videos online that are step by step!

@Serr - I looked at the ASD option and, while I'm terribly curious, I don't think I'll be jumping down that rabbit hole right away. Thanks for the tip. I just want to get back up and running. Hopefully this does it.
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Old 07-02-2019, 02:45 PM   #21
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Don't wait too long. A recent power outage at a Toshiba production plant ruined hexabytes of storage chips and has cut production for months to come. That will probably affect prices in the near future.

You'd think these plants would have some sort of UPS system, but apparently it's not that simple...
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Old 07-17-2019, 08:06 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sitruc View Post
Whatever is playing, a simple track with no plugins or an entire mix.

32 GB memory
With 32 GB of RAM, why would any buffering problem exist, whether SSD or HD. Unless your preferences are set in a strange way, you know, those 'advanced' tab settings about read/write buffering. I run reaper using tons of recorded takes stored on an external USB 2.0 drive.

And why always 10 minutes. Sounds more like, a possible powersave or screensave feature turning on, independent of app, other than one limitation in reaper seems to be that it doesn't tell macOS to stay awake the way other apps do.

The only thing I have noticed which causes me hiccups on imac is if I turn the project settings to 'Extreme HQ' for resampling algorithm preferences, when playing back something recorded at 44.1k and I'm at 48k (or something similar to that). So did you try turning that stuff to a lower setting, like "(Fast)".

So hmmm, why upgrading to SSD would be necessary for "a simple track with no plugins" .. umm I can't see how that would fix something.

I have had periodic/repetitive audio glitches in reaper, but it was related to having other audio apps also open simultaneously, and these didn't play well together, since the other app seemed to keep forcing the sound to 44.1k and I had reaper set to 48k, so depending on which app I had switched to foreground in various order of app switching, my focusrite driver apparently did not like one of their "interface reinit" sequences (probably the other app, not reaper's fault).

however:

Quote:
Originally Posted by sitruc View Post
with only an mp3 track playing .
I did have problems with mp3 files at one time.
It was recommended that I switch to a different format, which I did (ogg) and havent had a problem since.

Why not switch to a different format.

Last edited by superblonde.org; 07-17-2019 at 08:09 PM. Reason: mp3
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