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Turd Polishing Audio Interfaces
Old 28th December 2010
  #1
Gear Nut
 
cornpone's Avatar
 

Question Turd Polishing

Hello All-
I have been attempting to record on my 7 year old Dell Dimension 4600 which I bought 2gig of RAM to speed up. I have an echo audiofire 4 & a firewire card I installed(quite a long time ago for a video camera.) I spent a lot of time going through the stickys on speeding up XP which helped a little bit. I am running Reaper for my DAW. The problem is that when I get to about 10 tracks with VSTi's & Plugs the thing starts freaking out. It distorts really bad, slows down to nothing & will not even play the track.

The question for you wise readers is-Should I pump some more money into this thing or buy a new PC? Will I ever get decent performance with this computer? I don't need 100 tracks w/Plugs & VSTi's, but a dozen would be nice running compressors & reverbs & the like. I should also mention that I would not have much money to upgrade-certainly less than $500.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated!!!
Old 28th December 2010
  #2
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taturana's Avatar
I think the first thing would be to try to increase the buffer size for you audio interface... if that does not work , get a new computer...
Old 28th December 2010
  #3
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cornpone's Avatar
 

Wow that was quick. Thanks! Didn't mention it has a Pentium 4 processor in it, not sure how much that matters. I will try adjusting buffer size.

Last edited by cornpone; 28th December 2010 at 02:07 PM.. Reason: spelling
Old 28th December 2010
  #4
Quote:
Originally Posted by taturana View Post
I think the first thing would be to try to increase the buffer size for you audio interface... if that does not work , get a new computer...
...although this could make the vstis unplayable.
Old 28th December 2010
  #5
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jupiter8's Avatar
 

Your CPU is too slow,you need a faster one,that's all there is to it. Sinking more money into that machine is just a waste.
Old 28th December 2010
  #6
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cornpone's Avatar
 

Reading R3altruth's thread on a $500-600 computer right now. I am thinking it is time for an upgrade. Although i am not terribly excited about building one myself. I have installed cards, hard drives, burners, RAM, but putting everything together from scratch scares me. I work 12hr days & have two young kids so time is at a premium as well. Any place to buy my $600 dream computer already assembled? I am basically a hobbyest btw-songwriter who needs to get things out of his head. In other words I'd never need a 'super system.' Thanks for all the help so far!
Old 28th December 2010
  #7
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Bounce your VSTi's to audio once you get what you want.

Also, you might wanna try... when you need to keep your VSTi's so you can make changes... bounce the rest of your tracks' rough mix to a stereo file. Make a new project or session with the stereo mix and the VSTi you're working on. Once you get what you want, save the project/session for future work on the VSTi in case you need it, then bounce the VSTi to audio and put back into your original project/session for mixing.

May help you continue using your current computer for a while longer.

Best,
Randall
Old 28th December 2010
  #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by psycho_monkey View Post
...although this could make the vstis unplayable.
of course, that is also correct... i worked with my P4 up to 2009 and it worked well enough then... but after i got my my quad core ( which is being upgraded to a i7, i really would not want to go back to that ever again...

i could get pretty high track counts with higher latency setups... if i needed to record another vsti then i would bounce the tracks, reduce the buffer and record the vsti , then freeze, repeat, et cetera... it worked but it was a pain in the arse...

in my quad core i've reached stupid track counts and insane plugin usage with low latency, and it kept up fine to any challenges i put it up to
Old 28th December 2010
  #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by javahut View Post
Bounce your VSTi's to audio once you get what you want.
Hmm...didn't know I could do that. I will break out the reaper manual & find out how to do it. Once I get them set I rarely mess with them so that could work for a while.
Old 28th December 2010
  #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cornpone View Post
Hmm...didn't know I could do that. I will break out the reaper manual & find out how to do it. Once I get them set I rarely mess with them so that could work for a while.
Not only that but process the tracks with plugs down to their own files, leaving the original files untouched in case you change your mind later. Now your computer is not trying to recalculate all those plugs, edits, and volume changes each time you play the song. And you can make complete 'stem' mixes, folding down the drums to a stereo pair or those 53 lead guitar tracks to one track.
Old 28th December 2010
  #11
Gear Nut
 
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Been reading the Reaper manual. It looks like I can make the effected track its own take to free up some cpu. Is the stem the instrument with the effect on it? Looks like if I had a guitar with reverb I could make a stem then I would have the guitar & effect, I just couldn't make any adjustments. I really think I need a new set-up, but this will greatly help me for now. Thanks!
Old 28th December 2010
  #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cornpone View Post
Reading R3altruth's thread on a $500-600 computer right now. I am thinking it is time for an upgrade. Although i am not terribly excited about building one myself. I have installed cards, hard drives, burners, RAM, but putting everything together from scratch scares me. I work 12hr days & have two young kids so time is at a premium as well. Any place to buy my $600 dream computer already assembled? I am basically a hobbyest btw-songwriter who needs to get things out of his head. In other words I'd never need a 'super system.' Thanks for all the help so far!
Well, there are definitely places to get it pre-assembled. If you know your parts and want maximum control go to CyberPowerPc.com or Xtremegear.com and you can completely configure a desktop that they'll build for you.
Or just go to Dell/HP.com and find a computer there...
Old 29th December 2010
  #13
Lives for gear
 

A stem is.. well lets say you got a vst going.. with whatever FX.. you take that.. and maybe other channels that are doing similar things.. and you render that out to a stereo channel.. that stereo channel is a stem, basically.

A 7 year old computer is.. well.. I wouldn't be able to live on that as my main computer... Granted I'm the kinda person who needs more power then most people..

I always wanted to put together my own computer.. but I was always a mac guy.. my impression is that you really do kinda need to be pretty well up on technology.. to be smart about what parts you want to get.. but I always kinda felt like if you got so that you knew what you were doing that this really was the best path to take.
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