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Running out of power - bug?

Jeff Moore

Member
I understand that. What is confusing is the behavior of engaging that one specific effect in the midst of all the others in the preset. If ONLY that effect is engaged it shuts off the reverb to conserve CPU. If ALL other effects are engaged simultaneously there isn't a CPU overage. That's why I'm suggesting it's a bug.

Forgive me if I'm missing something, but that behavior doesn't seem consistent.
 

Danny Danzi

Power User
I understand that. What is confusing is the behavior of engaging that one specific effect in the midst of all the others in the preset. If ONLY that effect is engaged it shuts off the reverb to conserve CPU. If ALL other effects are engaged simultaneously there isn't a CPU overage. That's why I'm suggesting it's a bug.

Forgive me if I'm missing something, but that behavior doesn't seem consistent.
Jeff, I have the same problem which I've reported to FAS. The issue is....you and me just don't quite understand how it's possible to have a preset totally working while the blocks are in place, yet step on something and something auto-disables.

In my particular situation, I converted an XL+ preset to an AX8 preset. There were things in the AX8 that needed to be altered. The compression change to pedal 2 helped immensely and the big one was "economy" in my pitch block, which we don't have in the XL+. So I never thought to check there.

That said, I STILL couldn't get the patch to work without removing something. (multi-delay that I use for Steve Stevens ray gun sound) That's just the limitation of the AX8 for certain situations. My personal stance on this would be, if the blocks are allowed to load in the preset, nothing in that preset should disable anything. If the preset simply can't handle the blocks, I would rather know that from the start of the preset creation.

For the most part, my AX8 has been able to handle all my presets other than the one with the multi-delay and one of my fully loaded Van Halen patches. The fix is to recreate the patch with something that ISN'T turned on in that algorithm and you just hit that preset when you need it. You have to hope you don't get a glitch (which is why I use scenes) but that's the only way really.

When you can't load up something the way you want either because of memory issues, you just recreate without stuff that may not be needed. For example, in my patch that failed, I don't always use the pitch block, the delay block or the chorus block. So all I have to do is recreate the patch on a new preset that doesn't have those effects and I should be golden...which is what I did. The downside for me, spillover on doesn't stop the little lag I get when changing to that preset.

I wish I could use it in a scene so I can just off/on that multi delay block like I can in the XL+. But....that's just the way it goes man. That's why the XL+ costs what it costs. BUT...that little AX8 is a mean bitch that should get you close to anything you want with a little tweaking and scaling down. My biggest pet peeve is not being able to use the studio compressor at times because I always seem to be like 2-3% off. LOL! I think it obliterates anything else we have in those options as far as compression goes and hope one day we may see a reduction in what that uses compared to the others. Then again....same thing...the better stuff, uses more resources so we just have to keep playing around until we can find that happy medium. Or, get an XL+ and never run out of anything other than money! LOL! :)
 
J

joe rogers

Guest
If I am reading these posts correctly, it sounds as though folks seem to think that an effects CPU usage is a static thing. That is, if I use a compressor in my preset it uses X% of the CPU. This is not actually how it works. CPU usage fluctuates as you use the device. That is, depending on what an effect is doing, or how it is configured, the CPU usage will vary dynamically. The AX8 monitors and manages the CPU usage. This is done for two reasons:

1) If CPU load gets too high, then the audio is effected.
2) If CPU load gets too high, the front panel (footswitches primarily) is adversely effected. The performance of preset, scenes, effect bypass, etc. starts to become effected.

A lot of development time has been put into reducing these effects, but it is impossible to eliminate them entirely. Rather than just allow the AX8 to behave in an undesirable fashion, the unit manages the CPU load by disabling effects. The biggest offenders are disabled first in an effort to reduce the number of disabled effects. This typically means the REVERB block is the first effect disabled.

The trick is to build your presets in a manner in which this does not happen when you are playing live. In other words, test your presets out and give yourself some head room for last minute changes whenever possible.
 

nicolasrivera

Fractal Fanatic
Not to be unhelpful, but why disregard additional FX pedals with the AX8? I have some pedals that i love like Bogner Drives, TC delays and reverbs etc. I'm actually looking forward to fit them and the AX8 on a board. There are solutions to this situation, fun solutions.
 

Larry Largen

Inspired
Trem/Pan is not expensive. It must just be the last thing you added and pushed things over the edge.

This page has a list of the blocks and their CPU usage:

http://axefxtutorials.com/2015/12/ax8-cpu-usage-of-all-blocks-types-fw-1-00/

Again, splitting things up into multiple presets that don't require all of the blocks is a great solution. I use 3 presets with 5 scenes each.
This is a useful page. I've had the same problem with My AX8 and wound up using a spring reverb to keep it from disabling.
 

Jeff Moore

Member
Not to be unhelpful, but why disregard additional FX pedals with the AX8? I have some pedals that i love like Bogner Drives, TC delays and reverbs etc. I'm actually looking forward to fit them and the AX8 on a board. There are solutions to this situation, fun solutions.
For me the primary reason for a unit like this is the all-in-one factor. I don't wanna bother with additional pieces. That defeats the purpose I purchased it for.
 

Jeff Moore

Member
If I am reading these posts correctly, it sounds as though folks seem to think that an effects CPU usage is a static thing. That is, if I use a compressor in my preset it uses X% of the CPU. This is not actually how it works. CPU usage fluctuates as you use the device. That is, depending on what an effect is doing, or how it is configured, the CPU usage will vary dynamically. The AX8 monitors and manages the CPU usage. This is done for two reasons:

1) If CPU load gets too high, then the audio is effected.
2) If CPU load gets too high, the front panel (footswitches primarily) is adversely effected. The performance of preset, scenes, effect bypass, etc. starts to become effected.

A lot of development time has been put into reducing these effects, but it is impossible to eliminate them entirely. Rather than just allow the AX8 to behave in an undesirable fashion, the unit manages the CPU load by disabling effects. The biggest offenders are disabled first in an effort to reduce the number of disabled effects. This typically means the REVERB block is the first effect disabled.

The trick is to build your presets in a manner in which this does not happen when you are playing live. In other words, test your presets out and give yourself some head room for last minute changes whenever possible.
I understand what you're saying. It still isn't logical to that this is happening (please read my post above regarding switching behavior). It seems like a bug to me. (Changed thread title to reflect)
 

nccarg

Inspired
I downloaded your preset and took out the compressor block and used the output compressor in the amp block instead. Even with the output compressor boosted all the way up to 10 the cpu was only 89% with all of the blocks on at the same time. It might be worth trying using the OC instead if you want to maintain the reverb setting.
 

chris

Legend!
My personal stance on this would be, if the blocks are allowed to load in the preset, nothing in that preset should disable anything. If the preset simply can't handle the blocks, I would rather know that from the start of the preset creation.
not sure this is possible, because different block Types or settings can change the CPU usage of the block/preset. how can the preset let you know what you can't fit at start of preset creation, before you've added and set everything?

we all know that i could set a Reverb X to Spring Reverb, fill the preset up to 90%, then change the X to Y for a Hall reverb and High and ED of 8 - that would of course use too much CPU and disable the Reverb block. i'm not sure how the preset could anticipate that and "not allow" me to add the reverb block at some point.

before blocks were auto-disabled, we'd just not get ANY sound, or a very bad garble due to a taxed CPU. i believe the theory was to disable the high CPU blocks first, so if at the gig, we can at least have sound and finish the song, gig, whatever. personally, i'd rather have the Reverb disable as it does. i don't want a random set of parameters changing. once a block disables, i know that i need to make changes to not use as much CPU. it's pretty straight-forward.

i think the main issue in this thread is that the Trem block is acting differently than we expect. we expect that blocks use the same CPU when Engaged or Bypassed. the Trem block for some reason adds about 1.5% CPU when Engaged. complicating this is that the preset is already at 90%, which is basically the limit (again the other 10% or so is for the background tasks, audio processing, etc.)

as i mentioned before, the only change i made was to reduce the Echo Density in the Reverb block from 4 to 2 and then it didn't disable when i turned on the Trem. A studio comp placed at the front of the line is different than the Output Comp in the Amp block - sure that's a nice substitute, but has a totally different sound.
 

C-Huth

New Member
I experienced that using alternative less CPU hungry Y-settings of some effect blocks helps in such situations.
Example: program a spring reverb / reverse delay /diffusor as alternative Y-Settings for your reverb /delay /multidelay block and bypass those effect blocks as appropriate. Set-up a Scene where those mentioned Y-Settings being used together with your activated trem block. Good luck.
 

Danny Danzi

Power User
not sure this is possible, because different block Types or settings can change the CPU usage of the block/preset. how can the preset let you know what you can't fit at start of preset creation, before you've added and set everything?

we all know that i could set a Reverb X to Spring Reverb, fill the preset up to 90%, then change the X to Y for a Hall reverb and High and ED of 8 - that would of course use too much CPU and disable the Reverb block. i'm not sure how the preset could anticipate that and "not allow" me to add the reverb block at some point.
I guess I didn't explain it well enough. What I was trying to say was, you know how you load up your preset with effect blocks, and you see the CPU go up as you do so? I'm saying, once you hit a certain number, let there be a warning or something that says "ok, that's it" instead of having something work in one scenario and not in another while using the same preset. I understand the concept and see why it was done, I just would rather have something not work at all instead of "depending upon" in a single preset.

For example, and this is a bad example because there is no comparison, but on my Digitech 2101, when you maxed out, you got a huge "NO, DUDE, YOU'RE DONE" message when you'd go too far. LOL! I'd rather be faced with that and recreate my preset over having something sort of work and then not work, understand? That's what I meant in my original post. I guess it would be more the CPU stepping in instead of the preset. I know we have that, I'd just rather know before I store the preset that a block is not going to work right even if it fits.

Case in point, my multi-delay scenario. I use that mutli delay for one little spot. I just can't engage it and have verb, which is what I want along with some other stuff. The verb in Y block is the same as X, just with a little more wet and a little more decay. As soon as I try to use that verb with the multi delay in the chain (it doesn't even have to be on) the verb dies and will not work on Y unless I get rid of something.

I'm not saying it's a bad thing....I'm saying it's a bit misleading and a bit of a pain that you can use something sometimes but not all the time. As soon as I later the Multi or something else, I have no problems. I've figured out a work-around, but I sure would love to have all my stuff in one preset so I could use it in scene mode. In preset mode, there's a little glitch even with spillover enabled...so I have to try and create it another way.
 

yek

Moderator
Moderator
Danny, that's not feasible. Examples:

- the CPU calculation routine would have to take the CPU requirements of an USB connection in effect, in each preset, while some people may not connect the AX8 all that often.

- the CPU calculation routine would have to take the CPU requirements of operating all expression pedals in effect, while some people don't ever use an expression pedal.

- etc.

You'd end up with a CPU "ceiling" that's much lower than needed for a lot of people.
 

Danny Danzi

Power User
Danny, that's not feasible. Examples:

- the CPU calculation routine would have to take the CPU requirements of an USB connection in effect, in each preset, while some people may not connect the AX8 all that often.

- the CPU calculation routine would have to take the CPU requirements of operating all expression pedals in effect, while some people don't ever use an expression pedal.

- etc.

You'd end up with a CPU "ceiling" that's much lower than needed for a lot of people.
Ahh, I see. That makes total sense when you look at it from that perspective. :)
 

Jeff Moore

Member
Decided to revisit this preset today. I turned OFF the noise gate at the input and it took the CPU down roughly 6%! That's all I needed to have plenty of headroom to do everything I'm trying to do as well as set up an X/Y on Amp and Cab.

The journey continues :)
 

Danny Danzi

Power User
Decided to revisit this preset today. I turned OFF the noise gate at the input and it took the CPU down roughly 6%! That's all I needed to have plenty of headroom to do everything I'm trying to do as well as set up an X/Y on Amp and Cab.

The journey continues :)
But what do you do with any noise issues?
 
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