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  #1  
Old 05-26-2018, 06:29 PM
dg27 dg27 is offline
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Default Disk Playback Cache Size?

I only migrated to v12.4 last week and just discovered a setting with the Playback Engine that I believe wasn't available in v11: Disk Playback Cache Size.

The manual describes what it does, but I'm unsure what's appropriate for my system:

CPU

Intel Core i7 960 @ 3.20GHz
Bloomfield 45nm Technology
RAM
24.0GB Triple-Channel DDR3 @ 666MHz (9-9-9-24)
Boot drive
476 GB Samsung SSD 840 PRO (SSD)
Dedicated audio drive
238 GB Samsung SSD 850 PRO 256G (SSD)

Default for this is "normal," but there's no indication of what that is.

I understand that the highest value is 4 GB less than whatever your total RAM is, so in my case it's 20 GB, since I have 24 GB of RAM.

How should I set this?
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Old 05-26-2018, 08:07 PM
Darryl Ramm Darryl Ramm is online now
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Default Disk Playback Cache Size?

Quote:
Originally Posted by dg27 View Post
I only migrated to v12.4 last week and just discovered a setting with the Playback Engine that I believe wasn't available in v11: Disk Playback Cache Size.



The manual describes what it does, but I'm unsure what's appropriate for my system:



CPU


Intel Core i7 960 @ 3.20GHz

Bloomfield 45nm Technology

RAM

24.0GB Triple-Channel DDR3 @ 666MHz (9-9-9-24)

Boot drive

476 GB Samsung SSD 840 PRO (SSD)

Dedicated audio drive

238 GB Samsung SSD 850 PRO 256G (SSD)



Default for this is "normal," but there's no indication of what that is.



I understand that the highest value is 4 GB less than whatever your total RAM is, so in my case it's 20 GB, since I have 24 GB of RAM.



How should I set this?

Edit: oops missed you looked in the doc—The Pro Tools Reference Guide gives you an overview, and is useful to reading there about what the disk cache performance meters do. And all this has been discussed lots on DUC in the past (did you try to search for past posts?). Start with it set to a few GB (not “normal”) and observe the performance. We have no idea how much memory your sessions/plugins use (which tells you when a larger cache might cause problems) or how large the sessions are on disk. The size on disk gives a clue how large a cache might be and still help (not 1:1 but it scales).




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Last edited by Darryl Ramm; 05-26-2018 at 09:02 PM.
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  #3  
Old 05-26-2018, 09:22 PM
BScout BScout is offline
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Default Re: Disk Playback Cache Size?

Quote:
Originally Posted by dg27 View Post
I only migrated to v12.4 last week and just discovered a setting with the Playback Engine that I believe wasn't available in v11: Disk Playback Cache Size.
<snip>
Default for this is "normal," but there's no indication of what that is.

I understand that the highest value is 4 GB less than whatever your total RAM is, so in my case it's 20 GB, since I have 24 GB of RAM.

How should I set this?
Disk Cache has been around a lot longer than 12.

Disk cache uses a section of RAM as a hard drive buffer for audio files. "Normal" is merely a default/dynamic size. Turn disk cache on to a level that isn't normal, open up system usage viewer and load a session, watch the disk cache line and you'll see it "load up" (ignore the RAM line as now some of that belongs to the disk cache.) When the disk cache goes fully green, it is finished loading. If it is at 100%, increase the size of the disk cache as long as the RAM usage isn't also maxed out. If the RAM usage is nearly maxxed out, then that means you need RAM for your other VI and you have no more to spare for a disk cache.

If from the start, after your Pro Tools session is loaded, the RAM line is nearly maxed out, reduce your disk cache.

The disk cache size really depends on how many audio files are in your Pro Tools session but you can't/shouldn't exceed using too much RAM for the disk cache if you need it for other stuff (VIs)
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  #4  
Old 05-26-2018, 09:29 PM
Darryl Ramm Darryl Ramm is online now
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Default Re: Disk Playback Cache Size?

Quote:
Originally Posted by BScout View Post
Disk Cache has been around a lot longer than 12
Yes, but HD only, it was added to Pro Tools standard in 12.2.
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  #5  
Old 05-26-2018, 10:03 PM
dg27 dg27 is offline
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Default Re: Disk Playback Cache Size?

Thanks, Darryl Ramm and BScout for weighing in and providing very useful info.

Before I posted I moved it from "normal" to 2 GB; cache was barely green and RAM was @ I believe ~30%.

I'll need to experiment with this to find the sweet spot. And I guess it'll vary from session to session.

Thanks again.
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  #6  
Old 05-26-2018, 10:09 PM
Darryl Ramm Darryl Ramm is online now
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Default Re: Disk Playback Cache Size?

BTW I let Avid folks know the latest Reference Guide has mistakes in it where it talks about Disk Cache being a Pro Tools Ultimate feature, e.g. in the the Disk Cache Meter description.
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  #7  
Old 05-27-2018, 07:57 AM
dg27 dg27 is offline
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Default Re: Disk Playback Cache Size?

Thanks, Daryl.

I think your comments and those of Chief Technician on another thread

(http://duc.avid.com/showthread.php?p...52#post2397452)

are really useful. The reference guide says what it it, but provide doesn't any guidelines or examples from what I saw.

(I searched the forum after I posted and found this. Sorry--I should have searched first.)

This I found especially useful:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chief Technician View Post
The maximum cache size would equal the size of the Audio Files folder for the session you are working with. For example, if your Audio Files folder has 3 GB of data, setting the cache size higher than 3 GB will give you ZERO performance improvement to Pro Tools. In fact, it will hinder the rest of your system, because any amount above 3 GB (in this example) would be allocated to Pro Tools, unused by Pro Tools, and unavailable to any other process running on your computer.
My Audio Files folder for this project is currently 1.23 GB and will likely get larger; I'm thinking I should try and match the cache size to the size of the Audio Files folder.

Does this make sense?

Last edited by dg27; 05-27-2018 at 08:02 AM. Reason: clarification
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