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Reduce iTunes CPU usage on older processors Apps
This might be a no-brainer, but if you always have iTunes open (like me), and aren't happy with how much CPU time it eats through, here's an easy fix. Simply uncheck the "Sound Enhancer" option on the Effects section of the Preferences dialog. This change scaled iTunes CPU usage from peaking up to 38% down to a more reasonable 14%. If you're on an old G3 like me, you know how important every CPU cycle is!

[robg adds: On my G4/733, the impact of the sound enhancer is smaller but still noticeable. With it enabled, CPU usage for iTunes in the background runs between 8% and 10%. After disabling the enhancer, iTunes drops into the 4% to 7% range. Since this isn't a big penalty, and I like the enhanced sound, I leave it running ... but it clearly makes a difference on slower CPUs.]
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Authored by: avarame on Sep 26, '03 11:25:46AM

I've found that closing the iTunes window (not just hiding or minimizing it) helps a lot too. You can use one of the many remotes to control iTunes (I like Synergy) or use the Dock menu.

If you're not using the Equalizer, turn it off. It burns cpu almost as bad as Sound Enhancer.

iMac G3/700, 768MB RAM, 10.2.6



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Reduce iTunes CPU usage on older processors
Authored by: marmoset on Sep 26, '03 03:37:11PM

If you like the enhanced sound but don't want to take the CPU hit, I'd recommend SRS Labs' WowThing, which is just a little box with a DSP in it that sits between your headphone jack and your external speakers. It's only $10, and I've had mine for over 3 years and I love it -- it brightens the sound a bit, expands the stereo affect and does some subtle processing to wring a little bit more low end from your speakers.



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Reduce iTunes CPU usage on older processors
Authored by: dlelash on Sep 26, '03 04:05:48PM

Yeah, the WOW Thing is way cool. The only problem is that now I have the Mac system volume, iTunes volume, WOW Thing volume and speaker volume to adjust! Anyone have advice on which of these I should just set to 50% and leave alone?



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Reduce iTunes CPU usage on older processors
Authored by: OSXgenius on Sep 26, '03 05:59:59PM
For analog outputs, everything except the final output (the speakers) should be at 100% volume. At least that's what I would do...

~dan


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Reduce iTunes CPU usage on older processors
Authored by: ClarkGoble on Sep 27, '03 09:51:34PM

People should try running iTunes without the sound enhancer on anyway. In my experience it sounds considerably better with most good speakers.



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Reduce iTunes CPU usage on older processors
Authored by: torndownunit on Sep 28, '03 06:19:48PM

I agree with this 100%. When I updated to the last version of iTunes I was having strange sound problems with my mp3's. Turning off the Sound Enhancer and Soundcheck was the fix. I run my mac into my stereo and don't find I really even need it anway. If you are having any weird problems with your mp3's, try turning off Sound Ehancer and Soundcheck and see if it helps. The CPU reduction issues are a bonus.



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