(Parts,Performance) 7 years production and now i need real help
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Old 28-10-2014, 09:00 PM   #1
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(Parts,Performance) 7 years production and now i need real help

For the last 7 years ive been producing ive never really had a stable computer and have battled with knowledge of parts to get what i need in order to create music comfortably,

i take myself pretty serious but my pc doesnt and now i just want to work with no judder glitch or anything and get back to releasing... i just want a pure beastage computer that handles what i do.

i tend to use up to 50 channels if not more up to 100 - making bassy music (DnB - Dubstep - House - Hard knife party style mixdowns) - half audio and half midi most with numeruos plugins on the channels not to mention automation on channels.

so..... 1.

do people work this way ? and i mean not always bounce midi to wav to save cpu and use the vst as you can use the synths automations still

and 2 the mainquestion ....

im going to build a fresh pc that finally accomodates how i work but im no good on the tech so this is wher the help is massivly appreciated !!!...............


what sort of parts am i looking at ?

what motherboard/proccesor ?
harddrive ?
ram ?
and anything else ?

ive just tried so much and nothing seems to work smoothly when i get so far enuff into a track ?

Heres my current setup.....

Windows 7
500 GB HD 720
AMD Athlon II x2 270 Processor 3.40 GHz
16 G Ram
64 bit
cubase 7
External soundcard (scarlett 18i6)

thanks in advanced peeps

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Old 29-10-2014, 04:36 AM   #2
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Re: (Parts,Performance) 7 years production and now i need real help

Man, if you're running that much gear, then you're not going to get better performance by upgrading your system beyond your storage. Your first option could be to just replace your system drive with an SSD (research and buy a brand name, and don't cheap on it). Your second option could be to replace your system drive with two SSDs and set up a mirrored RAID array.

SSD's are going to give you a massive performance boost. They will definitely reduce the load time for your audio data. The other thing with audio is to load shorter samples in RAM if your sampler / DAW allows for it. This could give a slight boost as well.

Beyond that, learn to use your DAW's freeze function. This will render the frozen track to temporary audio. Then if you need to edit that section, just unfreeze it, make your changes and freeze again. This is very useful for soft synths and audio/midi tracks with a lot of DSP or parameter automation as none of this is being processed during playback of a frozen track.

As for your CPU, I can't really comment. I don't know anything about AMD processors. I will always stick with Intel after my first and only foray into AMD chipsets.
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Old 29-10-2014, 10:04 AM   #3
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Re: (Parts,Performance) 7 years production and now i need real help

Question 1: I constantly bounce MIDI to audio, and even more complex FX automation on the channels that are heavily processed to save CPU. I do feel that the limitations my CPU puts on me do affect the music I make, and that can sometimes be frustrating. At the same time, limitations breed creativity and I have come to solutions that I would not have developed if the problem wasn't there.

Question 2: As already mentioned, a SSD will make a huge difference. Especially so if you use multi sampled instruments and/or sample libraries. It will also make loading large projects much faster. In addition to that, you need a powerful processor to run all the plugins. RAM is relevant, and it's so cheap these days that you should probably get a bunch.

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Old 29-10-2014, 10:11 AM   #4
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Re: (Parts,Performance) 7 years production and now i need real help

Quote:
Originally Posted by maryjane View Post
i tend to use up to 50 channels if not more up to 100 - making bassy music (DnB - Dubstep - House - Hard knife party style mixdowns) - half audio and half midi most with numeruos plugins on the channels not to mention automation on channels.
+1 to SSD - best hardware upgrade I've ever made. If you're using 20+VSTi's (synths) in a project...that's quite a lot, especially if you're using some cpu-heavy artillery. I often hit 100 tracks in a project but only 5 or 6 of those are VSTi's processing midi in real-time. I seldom run into a problem with loads of audio tracks and VST fx/processing / native daw processing chains after the audio...you can upgrage forever but really I think a change of workflow will be a better approach. Your current setup seems quite decent.

You could probably use less hardware intensive synths: use the DAW synths and learn to program them better, add fx chains to get results which sound good rather than jumping straight in to a cpu-heavy synth. Bounce down to audio a lot.

What VSTi's (software synths) are you mostly using?
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Old 29-10-2014, 11:40 AM   #5
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Re: (Parts,Performance) 7 years production and now i need real help

ill use
massive
Reaktor
absytnth
nexus
Albino 2
ANA
FM8
Kontact 5.

to name few

i do use alot of instances of effects...

fab filter saturn
izotope 4 + 5 = this is a cpu killer
Trash
Waves
various reverbs
chorus
spatial design
Delays

To name a few...

Well i wouldnt like to change the way i work really ....

i love synthesis and creating new sounds no ones heard of so alot of experimentation goes on vsts and plug ins to achieve my sounds but b4 ive achieved the sounds these days the pc cant handle the proccesses ive told it to do, therfore stopping my work, im really at a dead end with it, ive upgraded twice since the beggining and no upgrade has ever really occuppied me,

i dont like to work with restriction cz it makes me loose all enthusiasm to make anything, i just need to know i can at least run 10 vstis with at least 10 plug ins on each (to be safe) then maybe min of 20 wav channels all them alsowith 5 - 10 plug ins on.

somone mentioned freezing tracks wich ive also done in the past but found impractical .
so is it possible to run 10 midi channels with 10 vsts all with 5-10 plug ins on and then say 20-30 audio channels all with 5-10 plug ins on?

somone ssuggested SSD ? they seem to be small no higher than 250 gb and ill be carrying 120 gb of samples to wich is prefered on the main drive


thanks for the help on this guys

Last edited by maryjane; 29-10-2014 at 11:57 AM..
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Old 29-10-2014, 12:12 PM   #6
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Re: (Parts,Performance) 7 years production and now i need real help

Quote:
Originally Posted by maryjane View Post
Well i wouldnt like to change the way i work really ....
Quote:
ive upgraded twice since the beggining and no upgrade has ever really occuppied me
Stalemate .
In that case just buy the best pc possible? You don't seem to have any budget constraints.
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Old 29-10-2014, 12:26 PM   #7
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Re: (Parts,Performance) 7 years production and now i need real help

its not the fact i dont have money constraints, its just im looking for something that works for me and havnt found it yet so im open to anything !

i wont buy a pack or built pc as id like to build myself.... just maybe need some knowledge on what are the most important parts for music production performance pc ? and what sort of parts like maybe Pentium i7 proccessor ?

in my head importance goes to a high speed Hd, Motherboard and proccesor and ram? but when it comes to wich parts and things like busses on the motherboard, things techy like that im in the dark lol.......

note - ive upgraded twice in 7 years , im not sure qoting me is help ? lol

Last edited by maryjane; 29-10-2014 at 12:35 PM..
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Old 29-10-2014, 01:16 PM   #8
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Re: (Parts,Performance) 7 years production and now i need real help

Quote:
Originally Posted by maryjane View Post
For the last 7 years ive been producing ive never really had a stable computer and have battled with knowledge of parts to get what i need in order to create music comfortably,

i take myself pretty serious but my pc doesnt and now i just want to work with no judder glitch or anything and get back to releasing... i just want a pure beastage computer that handles what i do.

i tend to use up to 50 channels if not more up to 100 - making bassy music (DnB - Dubstep - House - Hard knife party style mixdowns) - half audio and half midi most with numeruos plugins on the channels not to mention automation on channels.

so..... 1.

do people work this way ? and i mean not always bounce midi to wav to save cpu and use the vst as you can use the synths automations still

and 2 the mainquestion ....

im going to build a fresh pc that finally accomodates how i work but im no good on the tech so this is wher the help is massivly appreciated !!!...............


what sort of parts am i looking at ?

what motherboard/proccesor ?
harddrive ?
ram ?
and anything else ?

ive just tried so much and nothing seems to work smoothly when i get so far enuff into a track ?

Heres my current setup.....

Windows 7
500 GB HD 720
AMD Athlon II x2 270 Processor 3.40 GHz
16 G Ram
64 bit
cubase 7
External soundcard (scarlett 18i6)

thanks in advanced peeps
No two homebrew systems are exactly the same, no two user requirements are exactly the same. I'm afraid there is no substitute for spending a lot of time looking up the various products from the different companies and checking the reviews and feedback. Here in the UK, I've used Scan, Dabs and Ebuyer a fair bit.

Freezing tracks is very practical. I do it a lot. If I feel I need to make a change I can unfreeze easily and do the work I need, then re-freeze to ease the CPU load. The latest crop of VSTs from various companies sich as NI and U-He are extremely CPU hungry so freezing or bouncing is becoming more important.


Regarding SSDs, you can use them for OS and apps, but don't really need for data. I'm assuming your 720 HDD is a 7200rpm HDD which is plenty adequate for streaming from disk to DAW so long as you're not running an ancient system with IDE.

Frankly though from the gear you've described and the symptoms you're getting the problem lies in one of two areas:

1) Lazy track management, which is your own baggage you need to get over.

or

2) Poorly constructed PC possibly with incorrect OS configuration, specifically regarding drivers. Maybe including non-optimal DAW config.

Quote:
Originally Posted by maryjane View Post
note - ive upgraded twice in 7 years , im not sure qoting me is help ? lol
Don't be a dick, the man was trying to help you.

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Old 29-10-2014, 03:02 PM   #9
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Re: (Parts,Performance) 7 years production and now i need real help

This puts everything into context. I have been laughing at the idea that your specs would be struggling:
Quote:
Originally Posted by maryjane View Post
various reverbs
spatial design
Which reverbs? How many? Why do you have more than one or two reverbs anyway?

You do realise spatial design and convolution / impulse response et al reverbs are going to result in massive CPU consumption yeah?

I don't think I know anybody who works with convolution reverbs in real time when they're writing and arranging... Lol, that's just crazy talk.
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Old 29-10-2014, 03:06 PM   #10
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Re: (Parts,Performance) 7 years production and now i need real help

Oh man I can't stop laughing (sorry)

Seriously bro, you need to take Stercogburn's advice and look at your computer settings. I remember there was this cool website that was called windows98foraudio.com or something way way way back in the day.

It was super cool and contained a whole collection of system setting changes you could use to optimise your system for audio production. I don't think they continued it into the new millennium, but if I'm sure if you search for optimisation for your OS you'll find something.

But money won't solve your problem.
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Old 29-10-2014, 03:15 PM   #11
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Re: (Parts,Performance) 7 years production and now i need real help

Might be worth trying here: [Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]
and also [Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]
for a few optimization tips.
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Old 29-10-2014, 07:18 PM   #12
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Re: (Parts,Performance) 7 years production and now i need real help

i was disappointed cuz i thought this would be about performing parts, not what parts to use to produce.

sad

anyway i too agree with the current apparent consensus. learn to work within the system you have which is by no means a shitty computer, and use more audio tracks and freezing.

having something committed and un-tweakable except by effects is not such a scary thing. embrace it, learn to use audio better. learn to come up with ideas and then slaughter them. kill those babies.

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Old 30-10-2014, 01:39 AM   #13
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Re: (Parts,Performance) 7 years production and now i need real help

i have gotta say with my pc in its current state with 60 gb left on main harddrive 5 maybe 6 channels half midi half wav with processing goes funny on me..... should that be the case ? notsure i ever worked out best latency settings in cubase 7 either, lol i have no idea

ok cool, ill deff keep that in mind from now on, how could i improve performance slighlty then ?

in my head i have either SSD drives or higher rpm Hard drives, but ill probably go for say a 10000 rpm hard drive as ithe ssds dont seem to harbour alot of memory as of yet

as for the vsti tweaking, i like to automate all sorts including seperate oscilators and things like that so in an ideal world id like to not Bounce but im guessing im just guna have to form this way of working and stick to plug ins for changes along the timeline.

but surely some of the biggest names right now dont need to freeze/bounce thier stuff and limit themselves ?

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Soz for the noob questions guys lol, i just need this knowledge so i can continue the beats,
im not as bad in the studio as apposed to building the studio

Last edited by Jaded; 02-11-2014 at 06:16 AM.. Reason: Rules and shit
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Old 30-10-2014, 09:51 AM   #14
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Re: (Parts,Performance) 7 years production and now i need real help

Quote:
Originally Posted by maryjane View Post
i have gotta say with my pc in its current state with 60 gb left on main harddrive 5 maybe 6 channels half midi half wav with processing goes funny on me..... should that be the case ? notsure i ever worked out best latency settings in cubase 7 either, lol i have no idea

ok cool, ill deff keep that in mind from now on, how could i improve performance slighlty then ?

in my head i have either SSD drives or higher rpm Hard drives, but ill probably go for say a 10000 rpm hard drive as ithe ssds dont seem to harbour alot of memory as of yet

as for the vsti tweaking, i like to automate all sorts including seperate oscilators and things like that so in an ideal world id like to not Bounce but im guessing im just guna have to form this way of working and stick to plug ins for changes along the timeline.

but surely some of the biggest names right now dont need to freeze/bounce thier stuff and limit themselves ?



Soz for the noob questions guys lol, i just need this knowledge so i can continue the beats,
im not as bad in the studio as apposed to building the studio
Discussion of cracked software is not allowed on these forums. Expect a mod-slap if disucssion ensues

if you're planning your next system I'd recommend SSD for system drive, HDD for other drives. If cash isn't an issue, highest RPM you can get and get a couple of drives. Up to you if you RAID them or if you keep them for different purposes. Try and keep your data off the system drive or you will fill it up, especially if its a low capacity SSD.

One graphics card only, due to heat buildup and noise if you go for multiple.

As much memory as you can afford. More memory is more important than superfast memory. Obviously that may change if you're doubling it as a gaming rig. Then its just MORE FASTER MORE MORE FASTER MORE MORE, etc.

Intel processor. Sorry AMD, you're good but your architecture is a bit meh sometimes. AMD also like to throw in audio handling software that can mess up DAWs. Found this out recently the hard way, so if you even if you only have an ATI/AMD graphics card or are planning on putting one in, watch out for this.

(Not completely up to date on graphics cards, I don't know if Intel have solved their heat problems of recent years but they were having serious problems as recently as 3 years ago).


Ideally you never want to run a drive at more than 80% capacity. So having 60GB remaining might be great or a worry depending on the size of your drive. At 90% capacity your system may decide to grind, depending on your drive layout and system config. For example, at 90% on your system drive, expect a lot of chug. If its 90% used capacity on a drive you keep only for backups, you won't experience much slowdown at all.

Regarding freezing/bouncing, I can't say what 'big' names use but I'd suggest that the rules of computing don't magically change when you're famous

Last edited by Jaded; 02-11-2014 at 06:16 AM.. Reason: rules and shit

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Old 30-10-2014, 12:40 PM   #15
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Re: (Parts,Performance) 7 years production and now i need real help

i signed up here yesterday the website emailed me saying (were a friendly bunch) lol

some of you are lol......

thanks guys some people really really helped and answered my question directly , so thanks to them guys, some just took the position of your average forum fanny ......

thanks guys
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Old 30-10-2014, 12:47 PM   #16
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Re: (Parts,Performance) 7 years production and now i need real help

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaded View Post
This puts everything into context. I have been laughing at the idea that your specs would be struggling:


Which reverbs? How many? Why do you have more than one or two reverbs anyway?

You do realise spatial design and convolution / impulse response et al reverbs are going to result in massive CPU consumption yeah?

I don't think I know anybody who works with convolution reverbs in real time when they're writing and arranging... Lol, that's just crazy talk.
whats your solution mate ? instead of diminishing the way of work ?
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Old 02-11-2014, 06:20 AM   #17
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Re: (Parts,Performance) 7 years production and now i need real help

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but surely some of the biggest names right now dont need to freeze/bounce thier stuff and limit themselves ?
But they surely do. Interestingly, when it comes to non-EDM electronic dance music, there is a direct correlation between the size of one's name and the number of hours spent doing chores like bouncing and editing audio. The reason some people's music sounds like it's pushing the limits of technology is because it probably is... That is why we freeze and bounce and [Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]
.

Honestly, if you can't afford something, you probably shouldn't be using it yet.
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Old 02-11-2014, 04:07 PM   #18
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Re: (Parts,Performance) 7 years production and now i need real help

Dear IDMf,
I've cracked every major plugin known to man and, for some reason, my system lags hard. Please help.

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Old 02-11-2014, 10:33 PM   #19
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Re: (Parts,Performance) 7 years production and now i need real help

your over thinking stuff by miles the reason dubstep and drum and bass etc is loud and hard sounding is by grouping stuff and limiting on the group channels thats it all you need on channel is eq and possibly distortion on basses thats it. Have a group for drums one for basses one one for syths literally thats it, also you only need around 30 channels tops for dubstep couple of pads kick snare and few wub wubs and your done.
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Old 09-11-2014, 02:51 AM   #20
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Re: (Parts,Performance) 7 years production and now i need real help

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your over thinking stuff by miles the reason dubstep and drum and bass etc is loud and hard sounding is by grouping stuff and limiting on the group channels thats it all you need on channel is eq and possibly distortion on basses thats it. Have a group for drums one for basses one one for syths literally thats it, also you only need around 30 channels tops for dubstep couple of pads kick snare and few wub wubs and your done.
Its true, I feel im just finally starting to mix tracks that stand up to my favorite "pro" tracks. Spent years over thinking everything, and within the last year I have progressed more than the previous 4 because I FINALLY get it, simplicity is key. Really, just don't over think production, if you pick the right sounds, and start with the most basic of mixing tools; eq, a simple reverb, slight compression etc, you can achieve a HUGE, full, well balanced and clean mix. And come to terms with the fact that limitations truly DO lead to creativity and productivity. Sometimes those days I only have time to open up my laptop, without my maschine or any hardware, or even a mouse, too many times its when the magic has happened.

Get back to the music, and don't throw more effects on if you don't like it from the start. I understand you said you enjoy sound design and experimentation, and thats great, but when you have come up with the sounds you need to build a track, the writing part shouldn't be nearly as cpu intensive or over the top. You wouldn't believe how many of these top shelf producers are running old shitty computers. Its a philosphy and workflow thing, not a power, money and plugins thing.

Last edited by Deep Dose; 09-11-2014 at 02:56 AM..

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