Ridiculous number of file handles in Keyscape

@brad, in my performance system I see I have over 193000 file handles in Cantabile. Any idea what might be the cause of that? Or how to trace what is causing that?

Found the Culprit - it’s Keyscape. Is this normal? Anyone else see this? This causes keyscape to take a REALLY long time to load - and when loading, it blocks Cantabile till all is loaded - which is strange to me as most plugins (like Kontakt) return when they’ve loaded the preview samples - and then load everything else in the background.

Anybody got any experience with Keyscape loading?

I tried thinning the samples in Keyscape - that brings the load time to 37 seconds instead of 3+ minutes. But still uses 90000+ handles. Seems ridiculous; I did contact Spectrasonics support - see what they say …

Any other Keyscape users here? Your experiences?

I don’t use Keyscape, but O do use Omnisphere, so could take a look to see what that does. Where are you looking for file handle counts?

@derek, I use task manager, go to details tab, right click in the table headers and scroll down to add “handles” there.

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Thanks. Just wanted to check we were measuring at the same point. :slight_smile: If I remember, I’ll take a look later on


Found the handles column thanks.

Only the KeyScape plugin was used in my tests, no racks. I loaded several C7 acoustic pianos and seen highs of 31,000+ handles with load times of approximately 26 seconds.

I loaded several Rhodes electric pianos and seen highs of 37,000+ handles with load times of approximately 16 seconds.

I’m using Performer v3 build 3607, Win10H v1809, Intel i7-8700K 3.7 GHz, 32 GB, 512 GB SSD, and GlitchFree tuned. My UMC204HD is set to 44100 Hz, 256 samples, 8.5 ms latency.


Yup that is exactly what I’m seeing. That’s a bit ridiculous. Thinning helps, but still… tx for confirming!

Keyscape sounds great but it’s a hog in every way.

FWIW Keyscape support just confirmed, this is “normal”. Here’s what they are saying: “For example, the LA Custom C7 will load nearly 9k handles alone.” Pretty ridiculous IMHO. Anyhow, thinning the sample sets makes things far more manageable…

I don’t own Keyscape, but used it several times in a local studio, and it has some amazing sounds. I would never take it out for gigs, because it demands too much, and I don’t have enough, computerwise, to meet those demands. I have found other viable solutions that are less costly, less demanding and sound good for a live performance. My computer stays happy, and I can worry more about my performance, instead of excessive loads. However, I do like Keyscape in the studio which is where it shines. Good to know thinning the samples is helping.

Yes, sounds amazing, and even after thinning it still does!

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Finally got some time to check other Spectrasonic products (and other VSTs out of curiosity!)

Seems to be a Spectrasonic thing in general

Here’s some results to ponder.

  • Cantabile, empty song 454 handles
  • UH-E DIVA or HIVE it goes up to about 550 samples
  • Arturia DX7 or Matrix 12 it goes up to about 3,200 (surprising)
  • Omnisphere (A Multi from Luftrum Ambient 2), and I saw 43,000 handles
  • Trilian (Chapman stick) and I saw 12,000 handles
  • Kontakt loaded with a various range of NKIs swapped in, was pretty constant about about 1,950 handles
  • My favourite Taurus VSTi - made little or no change to the default Cantabile handle count, and neither did VB3II.

Can’t say that I saw an issue with all of these handles on use

@Derek : I didn’t have issues with the amount of handles in use until I hit about 200,000 :slight_smile:

This seems to be an operating characteristic of streaming sample instruments - since they don’t load the full sample into memory, but only the beginning of every one, they need to access the “tail” of the samples on demand. So it looks like these instruments simply open all individual samples on disk, load the head of the sample and simply keep the connection open to be able to quickly load the rest without having to go through the OS overhead of locating and opening the file when demand arises.

So no wonder there are tons of file handles open for sample-based instruments - some of them have tons of velocity levels, round-robin-variants, additional layers for multiple mic positions, room sound, amped vs. direct, … Pretty easy to get to multiple 1000s of samples for e.g. a luxurious grand piano. Just multiply 88 keys times maybe 30 velocity layers times 3 round-robin samples times 4 microphone positions, and - oops - you’re beyond 30.000 samples. Now layer some of these instruments, and it becomes fun…

For soft-synths, the number of open files can then be far lower - mostly system resources, preset libraries etc, I assume.

I don’t know how many file handles Windows can deal with gracefully, though. Each file handle will consume some system resources, plus management overhead - gets interesting…



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