Author Topic: VST Plugin: Continously increasing memory consumption with FabFilter Saturn 2  (Read 7968 times)

JustSomeone

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I might have stumbled across a strange behavior of MusicBee with the VST Effects Support Plugin in combination with FabFilter Saturn 2 Plugin.

When my FabFilter plugin Saturn 2 is deactivated via the Equaliser and DSP settings, MusicBee would start with about 40 MB of Memory usage. The RAM usage stays mostly stable during playback of various tracks. When activitating the FabFilter Saturn 2 plugin, the memory usage initially jumps up to e.g. 100 MB. So far so good. However, when I now start to play tracks the memory usage constantly increases. When pausing the playback, the occupied memory freezes at this level, until playback continues. Then MusicBee continues to occupy memory. When stopping the track, e.g. with 150 MB at use, the used memory falls back to e.g. 120 MB, but as soon as I hit the play button again, the used RAM jumps immediately up again to 150 MB (or whatever the value was before hitting the pause button) und continues to increase. The increase of the used memory would continue until about 1.5 GB and MusicBee would crash with an out of memory error.

Interestingly when stopping the playback after a while with active FabFilter plugin and then deactivating the FabFilter plugin, the used memory drops partly but not to its initial value. As an example: 40 MB of memory usage when starting MusicBee without plugin. 100 MB when activating FabFilter plugin Saturn 2, so a raise by 60 MB. Now playing tracks with active FabFilter plugin until used memory reaches 200 MB, so another increase by 100 MB. When stopping playback at this point and deactivating the FabFilter plugin, the memory used drops to 140 MB and would stay stable when playing tracks without FabFilter plugin. So it seems that MusicBee would not free up the memory gradually occupied during playback with the FabFilter plugin.

Might this be a potential bug in the VST Effects Support plugin for MusicBee?

I'm aware of the procedure described in this forum of how to make MusicBee work with up to 4 GB of RAM. However, that would just ease the symptoms / delay the out of memory error and not fix the problem, wouldn't it?

Next to FabFilter Saturn 2 I also use their parametric EQ plugin Pro-Q 3, which does not show this strange behavior of increasing memory usage.

I'm already in contact with FabFilter, however it seems that this behavior of their Saturn 2 plugin can't be reproduced with other VST hosts.

Many thanks in advance. Any help would be much appreciated.

JustSomeone

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Forgot to post my specs:

Plugin: FabFilter Saturn 2, version 2.03 (32 bit)
Host: MusicBee, version 3.4.7805, with latest (1.0) VST Effects Support plugin
OS: Windows 10 Pro, version 21H1, build 19043.1151

Steven

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I dont have any suggestions and if the plugin is important to you (and cant be replaced by another VST plugin) then you may need to use another application

JustSomeone

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Well, I love MusicBee as player and the Saturn 2 plugin to emulate tube sound, so I was genuinely hoping that there is something which can be looked into instead of being that quickly dismissed... I guess I have to simply accept that then.

hiccup

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…so I was genuinely hoping that there is something which can be looked into instead of being that quickly dismissed…
You should take it as a very swift reply from the sole developer of MusicBee with at least 12 yrs. experience in programming it.

If you are very experienced in something you can usually answer questions on the matter very quickly.
There is no obligation to explain the underlying thoughts.

JustSomeone

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I'm a software developer myself and personally I haven't managed to review my own code in a hunt for a bug or even debug in about an hour after report.

However I certainly understand that especially with limited resources decisions have to be made which reports to further investigate and which ones to dismiss based on benefit vs. effort considerations. But there is no obligation either as a user to be happy with any and each of those decisions.
Last Edit: August 14, 2021, 08:01:23 PM by JustSomeone

hiccup

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But there is no obligation either as a user to be happy with any and each of those decisions.
Let's hope you find a safe place to put your unhappiness without it doing much harm.

JustSomeone

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Let's hope you find a safe place to put your unhappiness without it doing much harm.
If the background of your comment is a concern that I would start a rant in this forum, that's neither my intention nor do I believe that it would help anybody. No need ever to get personal or unprofessional.

sveakul

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I get the feeling that implementing successful VST hosts within music players is a "b*tch."  AIMP only does via using an ancient Winamp host dsp plugin, with the expected reliability.  Foobar has two old host plugins, both of which are hit-and-miss as to what works and in what order and what's going to crash the whole thing.  AFAIK even those choices aren't available in general media players like VLC, MPC-HC, etc.  The only player I ever ran into with a native VST host that seemed to work with almost anything is the uLilith player out of Japan.  And that one had its own issues with missing file formats (Opus etc.) without using 3rd-party filters, skin availability, zero radio stream support, etc.

I guess my point is I'm glad MusicBee deals with VST as well as it does, considering the alternatives.  You just have to have similar effect VST plugins to try if your first choice isn't working.

JustSomeone

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@sveakul I very well believe that. And yes, I truly love MusicBee as it performs so well in so many aspects. There are only very few players on a similar level. And it works like a sharm with my other VST plugins like Pro-Q 3. That's why I turned to this forum and was looking for help. However, a decision has been made, and I accept this while being genuinly sad about it. And I understand MusicBee is non-commercial.

In my view FabFilter Saturn 2 is second to none for emulation of tube sounds and the like. At least I haven't found anything on a comparable level so far. However, Saturn 2 seems to work fine with JRiver and Audirvana on a first test today, so there might be an alternative option for my use case.

wealstarr

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@sveakul I very well believe that. And yes, I truly love MusicBee as it performs so well in so many aspects. There are only very few players on a similar level. And it works like a sharm with my other VST plugins like Pro-Q 3. That's why I turned to this forum and was looking for help. However, a decision has been made, and I accept this while being genuinly sad about it. And I understand MusicBee is non-commercial.

In my view FabFilter Saturn 2 is second to none for emulation of tube sounds and the like. At least I haven't found anything on a comparable level so far. However, Saturn 2 seems to work fine with JRiver and Audirvana on a first test today, so there might be an alternative option for my use case.

Fabfilter plugins are highly overrated due to their design and ease of use. Good design = Better. On the scale of Sound Quality there are tons of plugins that would beat Fabfilter in a heartbeat.

As for your specific situation, while MB VST wrapper works with lot's of plugins, it has issues with some.

Now your options are

1. Winamp host dsp plugin (Works better than native MB VST plugin)

2. DDMF's virtual audio stream (System wide VST host with native cabled and effects rack)

3. EqualizerAPO (another system wide DSP which can hosts VSTs too but has like MB plugin has limited functionality.)

4. Find an alternative to Fabfilter
Last Edit: August 14, 2021, 09:35:28 PM by wealstarr

JustSomeone

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Fabfilter plugins are highly overrated due to their design and ease of use. Good design = Better. On the scale of Sound Quality there are tons of plugins that would beat Fabfilter in a heartbeat.
I respect your personal view. However, for me Pro-Q 3 and Saturn 2 by FabFilter are - especially regarding audio quality - second to none. For example, Pro-Q 3 manages comparatively steep filter curves with less of the usual side effects. Haven't found that in any other parametric EQ plugin. And Saturn 2 comes so close to the sound characteristics of some real tube amps that for me it's simply a joy to listen. Having said that, everyone is entiteled to his or her own preference, of course.

Regarding your suggested options: (2) to (4) are no real options for me (I didn't manage to get DDMF to properly work on my system, EqualizerAPO doesn't work with WASAPI Exclusive and I don't want Windows audio manipulation to be part of my audio chain, and as said FabFilter Saturn 2 is the one I enjoy most). However (1) is certainly something I can look into. So thanks for the idea. And there is a 5th option, which is to further explore JRiver and Audirvana as alternative to MusicBee.

wealstarr

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However, for me Pro-Q 3 and Saturn 2 by FabFilter are - especially regarding audio quality - second to non

That's what I thought until I got myself Toneboosters bundle.

Audirvana looks really good. Does it has built-in support for VST's or does it require a plugin?


JustSomeone

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That's what I thought until I got myself Toneboosters bundle.
I've tried the some of the ToneBoosters plugins a while ago. Their Equalizer 4 performs really well in general. However, I own a pair of Denon AH-D9200, which can get a bit harsh on the sibilants above a certain volumne. Espially the peak at 12kHz is a bit piercing to my ears. So I need to eq my headphones sometimes and personally Pro-Q 3 does a silghtly better job at this without doing too much harm to the high frequencies in general. Especially the dynamic bands work really well for me. Furthermore I haven't found a Saturn 2 equivalent in the ToneBoosters bundle, especially for tube sound emulation.

Audirvana looks really good. Does it has built-in support for VST's or does it require a plugin?
It worked out of the box without any need to install an additional VST host plugin. However, they don't seem to offer a folder view and I'm a bit hesitant with the subscription model. JRiver integrated my plugins out of the box, too. And both seem to be fine regarding memory usage.

wealstarr

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It worked out of the box without any need to install an additional VST host plugin. However, they don't seem to offer a folder view and I'm a bit hesitant with the subscription model. JRiver integrated my plugins out of the box, too. And both seem to be fine regarding memory usage.

Thank you for the response. I would have considered it but subscription model is deal breaker. I'm fully satisfied with MusicBee but I have this urge to try new softwares out and Audirvana sure looked interesting.
Last Edit: August 15, 2021, 09:01:38 PM by wealstarr