How do I optimize my computer for a DAW only setup

Help with computer setup

I Just bought a new computer for recording only. I’m running windows 7 64 bit. It is a Intel Q8200 2.4 gig Quadcore 4 Gigs ram 640 gig HD. At 16 tracks of music with no VSTs running at all it tells me it can’t process the tracks. whats up? What do I need to do to get it to perform as well as my old 2.6 dualcore?
Thank you for your time and patience as this is my first and probably incorrectly done posting.

I am totally uninformed about Windows 7. I do know it has a way to process sound that XP did not use. Maybe someone here has been using Windows 7.
I have an Intel Quad Core and it suffers from the same lag issues you describe running XP. My old AMD dual core has far less latency. Whether this is from the processor or the motherboard I am not sure. I will say, that all-in-all I find that the quad core seems to have more problems multi-tasking than the dual core computers I have (all running XP)

My One universal suggestion: if you have not done so, turn off your anti-virus when recording. If you have other programs that run in memory ( they typically show up in the task tray at the bottom of your desktop screen) turn them off if you can - these were mostly implemented to speed up the start up time for the application at a cost to the over-all resources of the computer. There are programs to help identify these and in XP you would use MSConfig to turn them off.

Thanks for the input Bax. I really appreciate any and all suggestions to this one. I haven’t been using 7 for very long at all this is my first whack at the cat and I’m wondering if there are other things I could do to make this puter step up to the plate. I have been on top of the other programs running in the background as you were saying but never tried turning off my anti virus so I’ll do that for sure. I’m going to keep monitoring this post and see if someone does have some knowledge on this and if there are things I need to shut off or remove etc. So thanks again and happy tracking!

I just moved to a new machine. . .
n-track 6.0.9 build 2604 (I’m using the 32 bit version)
Windows 7 Home Premium (x64) (build 7600)
3.00 gigahertz Intel Core i5 750
32 kilobyte primary memory cache
8192 kilobyte secondary memory cache
64-bit ready
Multi-core (4 total)

So far the only problem has been midi stuff recently reported in this forum, but it is the same problems I had on my old machine.
I haven’t done a lot of new recording yet, but I have been doing some touch up on older tracks, one has 28 tracks with mostly audio, and a couple midi tracks, and a lot of special processing, and I have had no recording/playback issues.
But it is only about 3 minutes long.
Could it be your sound card/interface?
I’m running an m-audio delta 1010LT with no major issues.
At the m-audio forum I found a lot of advice about recording in win 7 (http://forums.m-audio.com/).
Even if you don’t have an m-audio device, it might be worth it to search thru for some of your issues.

Thank ye muchly ping cat. Your idea of the sound card and such is (I believe) right on the money. I;ve just been working on the situation and my interface (Tascam US-122L) came with cubase software. That said I couldn’t stand the way it worked thus I’m now with N-Track after some hearty research. With that in mind I had the realization the the WDM drivers that I had understood to be as good as Aiso ones were infact not so. As well the drivers that I have loaded from the Tascam site(Updating) do not say weather they are MME or Aiso or what. So I have found out that the updated drivers are not the WDM ones but the non discript ones and they work quite well so far. Thank you for the thoughts Ping and I’ll be here on the Forum more often after this to keep learning from you guys that have the smarts and experience.
Don’t worry I check my manuals and do searches before I start asking too many stupid questions. No promises though. LOL

Quote: (Friguy @ Aug. 26 2010, 12:52 AM)

I Just bought a new computer for recording only. I'm running windows 7 64 bit. It is a Intel Q8200 2.4 gig Quadcore 4 Gigs ram 640 gig HD. At 16 tracks of music with no VSTs running at all it tells me it can't process the tracks. whats up? What do I need to do to get it to perform as well as my old 2.6 dualcore?
Thank you for your time and patience as this is my first and probably incorrectly done posting.

Hello,

I am not much of a recording guy, just so you know up front.
The following is based on a desk top computer primarily not a laptop.

I am going to supply a link (bottom of post)from the AVID - Pro Tools web site that guides people about setting up Pro Tools for Windows 7. Why?
Because Pro Tools is EXTREMELY EXTREMELY PICKY
about how your computer is setup for a dedicated DAW this does actually provide a good guide for other DAW software. Now remember, Pro Tools comes from the view that your computer will be used for a dedicated DAW only computer.
It has you disabling the network card, prefers no anti-virus software to be installed, and many other
guide lines, etc.. It is in a sense the extreme way to strip and prep Windows 7 to be used as a DAW.

In Windows 7 you still can use msconfig to control all your start up programs.

My personal opinions here only:
1. A powerful gaming system does not make for a powerful DAW processing computer. Two different animals and how they are tweaked and setup.
2. Provide a way to make backup disc images of your entire system on a regular basis. Use a external hard drive if needed, if you don't you WILL be sorry eventually


One thing I see all the time on this web site and other DAW sites is that people try and work off of one single hard drive, bad move.
Everything I have read highly suggests that you have 2 hard drives in your computer at minimum. One drive for your OS and program installations and the other drive for recording your music onto.
One hard drive is not the way to go.
Buy hard drives that are preferably 7200 RPM with as much CACHE memory on them as possible. 32Meg of cache memory on the hard drive is quite the standard today.
As fast as computers are today there is still a hardware limitation (buss)on how much data can be transferred from and to a hard drive. Two hard drives greatly improve the flow of data which is what you optimally want for a DAW.

The PTools guide is on the extreme end of the spectrum for DAWs but it is a good over view of all the tweaks you can make to a Windows 7 computer.

Lastly remember, Windows 7 64, along with a 64bit DAW software will work best with plugins that are written/designed specifically for 64bit systems. It doesn't mean 32 bit plugins won't work, but it ends up being a bit of a crap shoot as to their functioning correctly 100% of the time.

I hope this helps a little. I am NOT a expert wiz, just trying to help
:D

Link for Avid PTools Win7 Guide

Excellent advise BluesLue!

I recently went to a dual boot arrangement in my PC, one of which is dedicated to n-track recording. Without anything else installed and windoes xp, she works great. Only cost me a new hard drive (same everything else) Its amazing how much slower the other boot is compared with it. With all virus checkers and other crap its really slow.

:agree: Dual-boot here, too. Music side is as quick as a spring.

This is the kind of info I was hoping for! Thank you very much Blues and Monst. Being that it is a guide for protools I’ll be doing some research on the info for using it all or in part for n-track. I’m interested in the dual boot as well and have made boot disks the moment I brought the computer home. I guess I didn’t say that it is a desk top type as well.
:D tip o the hat gents.

I have found a really great windows 7 computer optimizing place. It’s from the presonus knowledge area of their home page. They also have one for XP. But for the Win 7 one just go to the Link below and it’ll be there and it’s very useful.

http://support.presonus.com/entries…ndows-7

Happy Tracking

Good advice in the links.
Personally, I keep my computer connected to the net, so I do have a firewall and antivirus running.But I keep the machine fairly clean by using web browser based office software instead of installing a lot of applications.
I.T.

Quote: (Friguy @ Aug. 26 2010, 12:52 AM)

I Just bought a new computer for recording only. I'm running windows 7 64 bit. It is a Intel Q8200 2.4 gig Quadcore 4 Gigs ram 640 gig HD. At 16 tracks of music with no VSTs running at all it tells me it can't process the tracks. whats up? What do I need to do to get it to perform as well as my old 2.6 dualcore?
Thank you for your time and patience as this is my first and probably incorrectly done posting.

I have resolved all the issues since this post and have been really happy with N track for the most part. I have also doe a lot of additional
up grades to my computer and studio since then. I also hope the world of 64 bit vst will start to really come around in this next year as I think it will be the way of all DAW's in a short time to come.
Thanks everyone for the help and if you missed it check out the info on post #11 of this topic for the info on computer optimization for DAW's.