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DAW performance ? Is my pc obsolete?
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CassidyGT
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#1
16th May 2012
Old 16th May 2012
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DAW performance ? Is my pc obsolete?

I have a core 2 duo machine quad core Q6600 with 4gb ram. I run 64 bit win 7 and cubase 6.5.

It is bogging down On seemingly smallish projects. E.g. 4 vstis with 4 audio tracks. Decent amount of plugs but not too many. I use all 64 bit plugs - no bridging.

Should this be happening? While my pc isn't the latest it seems like it should not be bogging down with this project size.
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#2
16th May 2012
Old 16th May 2012
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I would add more RAM use the task manger to see how much you are cureently using. I know that my cubase projects tend to require 3-1/2 to 4 GB RAM on average. You need some extra for the OS to use fo for itself, file caching etc....

BTW All Computers are obsolete withing months of buying them.
#3
16th May 2012
Old 16th May 2012
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I would suspect you have something running in the background. Antivirus maybe? Other random programs ? Should get better results than that with what you have.
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16th May 2012
Old 16th May 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CassidyGT View Post
I have a core 2 duo machine -quad core - Forgot the specific number, with 4gb ram. I run 64 bit win 7 and cubase 6.5.

It is bogging down On seemingly smallish projects. E.g. 4 vstis with 4 audio tracks. Decent amount of plugs but not too many. I use all 64 bit plugs - no bridging.

Should this be happening? While my pc isn't the latest it seems like it should not be bogging down with this project size.
Do a clean install of Windows. I do it about every 6 months.
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16th May 2012
Old 16th May 2012
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it depends what plug ins, 4 instances of something like "Diversion" would easily max out a c2duo, you probably wouldn't even make it to 4 before the computer choked.
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16th May 2012
Old 16th May 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stevens119 View Post
Do a clean install of Windows. I do it about every 6 months.

seriously ? imo that is not necessary at all. all you need to do is keep away of installing rubish on your pc
CassidyGT
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16th May 2012
Old 16th May 2012
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Pad shop, cakewalk electric piano, mystic and ezdrummer are the vstis

Other than that I have true verb, reverence x2, Kramer master tape, arc, one amplitube, and a couple renn eqs.

Doesn't seem like too much.
#8
17th May 2012
Old 17th May 2012
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I'd try different audio buffer settings and see how that effects it.

I'd also check your disc activity in the window resource monitor.

I troubleshooted a friend's laptop that was having problems with Ez Drummer and Kontakt choking on his Core Duo.

The problem turned out to be that the paging file on the system drive was slowing everything down. Both Ez Drummer and Kontakt apparently access the HD frequently to use "round-robin" types of samples.

Once I moved his paging file to an external drive everything immediately worked as it should.
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CassidyGT
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17th May 2012
Old 17th May 2012
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Hmm. That's interesting. I'll look into that.
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17th May 2012
Old 17th May 2012
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I have buffer set at 1024 samples.
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17th May 2012
Old 17th May 2012
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Are you running short of memory or cpu?

How much cpu is cubase using?
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17th May 2012
Old 17th May 2012
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Your Q660 and 4 gb of ram should handle that no problem. I've ran projects much bigger than that on the same configuration, something isn't right.
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17th May 2012
Old 17th May 2012
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If you have quite a few or heavy load FX/VI's it could be the issue, seems to me the reason you can get 8 tracks is that each track is handled by a separate core (Quad core)
and if you're taxing each core with each track once you add another track it's too much for the processor to handle.

For instance if your running 8 tracks, the daw is processing 2 tracks with each core, you may be running fine but near the limit of the processor.
As soon as you add 1 more plugin or one more track, you're tipping one thread into overload.


I'm no expert and assume that every daw has accounted and programed for this, but it could be possible based on the track layout, that two,
more intensive tracks are being processed by the same thread while there is still headroom left on the others. (Completely speculation)
Check your task manager's cpu meter, I found that in ableton I started getting audio artifacts when my reading was past 60-80%.

I found good way to spread the load out between the threads is to send one track to another and split the effects between the two tracks.
In ableton you have the option to Freeze the track which basically renders it to audio and disables all the plugins. You can unfreeze the track when you want to edit the processing.

I had my Q6600 OC'd to 3.6 and it gave me quite a bit of performance increase over the 2.4 at the expense of quite a bit of fan & pump noise.
I eventually got an XPS15 I7 2.0 GHZ and it outperformed my OC'd Q6600 in the same sessions using only ASIO4All thru the onboard realtek audio.
Scratched my head a bit and speculated it was due to the efficiency of the I7 as well as the Hyper Threading (q6600 Oc 3.6ghz x 4 cores = 14.4 GHZ of processing power)
(2635qm 2.0ghz x 8cores(4xPhysical 4xVirtual) = 16 GHZ + Turbo Boost) I know it's a poor way to measure it but in theory it's accurate.

I must say though either it's complete rubbish or I have run into some sort of bottle neck, cause if I use the same math on my current desktop configuration
(4.7ghz x 12 (6 physical + 6 Virtual) = 56.4GHZ) I definitely notice an increase in performance, but it doesn't feel like the 4x that the numbers would imply. I start getting audio hiccups at around 20% cpu.

A simple check would be to get DPC Latency checker and see if there's any discrepancies there.
If you get any peaks, then something is causing latency spikes and you need to systematically search for the culprit.
Could be a display driver, or a wifi adapter, or anti virus software or a many number of things.


DPC Latency Checker

Hopefully some of this information is helpful lol..
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#14
17th May 2012
Old 17th May 2012
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Double the RAM, 4 is not enough. I have 8 GB in my Core 2Quad 6600

RAM Memory Upgrade: Dell, Mac, Apple, HP, Compaq. USB drives, SSD at Crucial.com

1. Your using a separate drive for the Project/AUDIO files yes? If not throw another HD in that thing for the audio files.

2. Running Cubase and the Audio on the same drive is not recommended by Steiny

3. If your running 64 bit your not getting full benefit out of it with 4 gig Ram, up that sucker

4. After that if your CPU is still tanking then you have a diff problem, but Core 2 Duo should be abel to handle what your throwing at it



*The EFFECTS plugins are the ones that eat up the CPU such as Reverb, Chorus, Flange. I think PadShop eats the cpu some as well.
YOur CPU may not be able to hang with the VST requirements. Either way, Id double the RAM and check it again, a fresh install of Windows
isnt a bad idea. Are you using Norton AntiVirus? THAT will kill your PC performance. Norton BLOWS
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#15
17th May 2012
Old 17th May 2012
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Simple Solution Up The RAM!!!!!!

I have a 2009 17" MBP i run logic i can run 30+ tracks with effects and sends multiple reverbs with no problem..i was running into problems when i had 4GB of ram then i did the upgrade and BOOM! i was gonna upgrade to a newer one i thought it was crapping out but i guess not and i have a uad card also that helps some
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Last edited by Melvin III; 17th May 2012 at 02:32 PM.. Reason: typo
CassidyGT
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17th May 2012
Old 17th May 2012
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Put in another 2gb of ram to up the system to 6gb last night. Another 2gb stick is on the way.

I do have separate audio and system drives.

I put the page file on a third drive and made sure all services were disabled except the ones I need e.g. Norton disabled

I also optimized the PC for audio using all recommendations - background processes, no Aero etc.etc.

This has resulted in modest improvements. The project is not sputtering now but the ASIO gauge is still at 40% which seems high.

I must say that when I disable the Waves Kramer Tape plug in the meter goes down from 40 to 25%. That seems like a crazy amount of processing!!

Of course when UAD finally releases 64 bit plugs, I will be able to use my DSP which should also help. And I will get my favorite plugs back!!!! Tough to mix without my Neve EQs on tracks and my 33609 on the mix bus.
#17
17th May 2012
Old 17th May 2012
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What sample rate are you running your songs? I have an 8gb Q6600 windows 7 x64 setup as well and running sonar 8 Producer I can get about 45 tracks all with eq, comp, gate, and ozone running on the master bus. I'm thinking the instruments are causing some issue, VSTi's are VERY CPU hungry. If after your memory upgrade you are still having issues you might have to resort to bouncing the midi instruments to audio. Mute the midi tracks and simply disable the VSTi after bouncing so you can go back and change the midi parameters if you need to later and re-bounce.
CassidyGT
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17th May 2012
Old 17th May 2012
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I run 24 bit, 44k

I also just purchased an SSD drive so that may help also.

I will bounce as needed. I just thought the system should be able to hang. I'll do it and see what happens.
#19
18th May 2012
Old 18th May 2012
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another very simple and free solution is to render some of the plugs back to the tracks so that the computer doesn't have to recalculate the same effects over and over again each time you hit 'play'.
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