Reaper Tips and Tricks: Memory issues


Today I got my Komplete Ultimate Sample Library.

I had been looking forward to get that for quite some time, and until the end of July they have a 50% off -offer, so I went for it. After an hour or so of installing this 200gb-monster I started fooling around with some of the plug-ins, trying to replace some of my older sample libraries (like the cakewalk center that came with my ua-25ex-interface) and suddenly I was in Reaper-Crash-Country.

I must have restarted my computer, my interface and/or my Reaper around 50 times until I finally couldn’t take it anymore, and then I spent an hour researching my problem: Reaper thinks he runs out of memory, tells me that he cannot “allocate” enough of it and crashes. Funny thing was, I could actually set a timer, because soon as I added an effect from Komplete the Memory usage went up and up and up and up and then it hit a brick wall at around 1,4 gb ram and went poof.

As I run Reaper on a 32-bit Windows 7 I do have limited RAM (4GB) but up until now that never was a problem. Until now.

Should you ever run into that problem, you might consider several options:

a) upgrade your system to 64bit and 8gb, that should solve anything. Thorough but problematic.

b) right-click on any fx you want to add, and ‘run as’, and run it as a ‘seperate process’. That way Reaper won’t grow beyond proportion and hit that memory-per-process-brickwall.

c) don’t use fx or sample libraries. like, at all.

d) enable the 3gb-per-process-switch of your Windows. THIS eventually solved my problem for good. My Reaper tops out at 2,8 gb memory usage now, and everything is back to normal.

During that learning curve up there I considered throwing away what was to be the core song of this ep because it just went from bad to worse, and I don’t seem to be able to make it work. So I grudgingly decided to write yet another song. None of the ones I already have fit into the concept of the EP. That song turned out quite well, actually I think its a breakthrough in my songwriting, but it is too early to tell. If, by the end of the week, it still works as well as I think it does now I will have to include 6 songs on the first EP.

Interesting times indeed,



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2 thoughts on “Reaper Tips and Tricks: Memory issues

  1. overcompressed says:

    Chances are, if you disable a bunch of your plugins, and find the sample you like for each vsti track you have printed, you can freeze each one. Then re-enable your surrounding plugins. This process makes you commit, but still allows you to change your mind later as the arrangement takes shape. I feel your pain, but Reaper has been the EASIEST daw I’ve ever had the chance to work on. Chances are, you’ll find a work around. Keep at it. Your stuff sounds great.

    • null says:

      Thanks dude!

      Yep, that is the right approach. I do freeze once I am done writing, but when I have my 7 VSTis open and write what music they play along to each other it’s quite a drag to freeze/unfreeze everything after every little change. The 3GB-switch in combination with the separate processes did the trick anyway 🙂

      And yes, REAPER continues to amaze me, too, ever since I first tried it 4 years back to record sleep is wrong, and every month there is new free stuff… greatlyness!

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