more jamstix/n-tracks problems

jamstix demo crashes

Just upgraded to N-tracks ver 4x (gulp). Been using N since ver 2x. Decided to try Jamstix for drums (thanks for the great quick-start guide RichLum). I’ve tried it with the latest N (build 2042) and build 1846 (as RichLum uses). The problem is I’m crashing every 10 minutes or so (often with a blue screen of death) or just a lockup that requires a hard reboot. My question to those of you who may have recently run the demo - then the purchased program - it the full program more stable then the demo (or maybe it’s N…)? (Yea, a dumb question - if the demo doesn’t work right, I should just move on to other drum machines…).
Tried running in a project with just one guitar rhythm track and Jamstix - still crashes on Jamstix or N parameter changes. Any ideas? Thanks.

Running on 3.2 ghz, 1.25 gig ram, lots of free hd space, optimized XP, 7200 rpm hd, notebook.

I haven’t used the JS demo for a while so I might have been on a pre 1846 build of N…
But the demo was generally stable once Ralph and Flavio worked out some initial bugs between the N and JS when JS was first released.

I’ve been using v1.42 of Js for w hile no with no major problems (it will occassionally hang if I try to change drums samples without stopping the song playing in N first - seems to have a problem keeping on playing whilst loading the new sample at the same time, but this is not a biggy as I just make sure I press stop before changing samples).

I just downloaded v1.5 of JS and one of the things in the chnage log is
"reduced interface CPU usage through reduced refresh frequency and optimization"

not sure if that may help you…

It may be something to do with your graphics drivers… once I start building up a few tracks N seems to run better if I don’t have the mixer window and the JS GUI open at the same. I think both are pretty graphics/CPU instensive with all the moving vu meters in the mixer and the position markers etc. in JS.

What exactly do you mean by “crashes on Jamstix or N parameter changes”?
Do you mean when you are drawing the effect automation parameters in the timeline in N?
Or you are changing paramters by clicking buttons etc. in one of the GUI’s?

Your notebook certainly seems to have the grunt to run N and JS…
What does the cpu usage show in N as when it crashes?
My crashes in N are usually when the cpu usage starts getting into the red…

Rich

Thanks for looking at this Rich. The parameter change would be something simple such as modifying the “Funkiness” parameter, etc., on jamstix or changing the channel volume in the N-Tracks mixer. Have you seen this kind of instablility? The cpu usage was down around 12-15% (when running just one track - no other effects). I did have it running at around 45 - 60% with more tracks - and it did not seem to be directly correlated just to cpu utilization (although at the higher levels things did seem to be less stable). If you are able to interact with the interface (within reason) without any instability, I’d also have to suspect the video driver or some other conflict. Jamstix is very cool to play with (did a little live playing this morning before the problems started) and I’m motivated to work out the problems. Any other ideas would be greatly appreciated. Right now I’m running a virus scan, then I will download a new video driver (just found out about it). If there are no other suggestions, I will see if I can get an earlier version demo & check that out. If that still causes problems (that you’re not seeing), I will reinstall XP from the ground up (I had some problems installing .Net with N-Tracks). Thanks and please throw out any other things that you think of!

-Tim

Yeah I can defiintely adjust the sliders, check boxes etc. in JS with no problems.
Can also move mixer faders in N no problem if not too many tracks running (If there are I have to turn off the individual track vu meters to ease the load on the cpu/graphics).

After a few bloody evenings, with help from RichLum and the forum here , i managed to rein in jamstix on ntrack. its a much lower system than yours (P2.8, 60gig, 500mb)

As far as I can tell, the full version is as jumpy as the demo - but it’s just a matter of learning what you can and can’t do and letting Ralph know if there’s something weird going on.

For instance, i get a crash if i try to open the percussion button while its playing - so I don’t do it (like pavlov’s dog, you soon learn). It also tends to lock up if I click on the mixer window while the jamstix window is active - so i try not to do that either.

I imagine these glitches will be resolved - just make sure your graphics/sound drivers are absolutely clean and then, as the man says, ‘play with it’.

Thanks again for the input guys (and for the encouragement Rich). I’ve been knee deep in … diagnosing my pc and found that I have a hard drive with corrupted sectors that cannot be repaired with a reformat. I’ve got a new one on order. This could have explained some of the instability I was having (I found that it was also occurring with N-Tracks, and just running a virus scan).

While I’m waiting for my new hard drive, I decided to continue evaluating drum plugins (got an eval copy of Arconis True Image - if I crash too hard I can just restore my disk image in 2 minutes from my usb drive!). One thing that I wanted to point out that might help others (I haven’t seen this mentioned in the forum yet) - is what a help turning off my speed step on my processor was(I’d forgotten to do that this time). I’m now running jamstix demo with 8 other tracks - full effects - etc - and no problems. It appeared that most of my instability was when the processor was kicking down to a lower speed in the middle of a song and the cpu util. was peaking (just for a millisec). I can now change Jamstix settings (haven’t tried them all yet, but basic ones work fine) while in the middle of playback.

Here’s a link to the speed step doc that I used to turn the speed step function off (causes it to run it at max hz - like most non-power saving cpus). http://www.intel.com/cd/channel/reseller/asmo-na/eng/203838.htm
Now, of course, I have to make sure that my pc is well ventilated - and running it like this will drain the battery faster - but without this I can’t get even a single track to play back without occasional dropouts.

Looks like Jamstix is going to work well for me - thanks to Rich (and all others) for the suggestion to try it and your help.