You need to be logged in to post on the forum
Topic Options
Index
#439746 - 11/22/17 09:49 PM [Help! Tech S.O.S (Off topic)] Wondering if my System lacks the >>oomph<< and what I need for BiaB and RB
cooltouch Offline
Apprentice

Registered: 12/20/11
Posts: 222
Loc: Houston, Texas
Uh-oh, I think I've posted this to the wrong sub-forum. I meant for it to go into the Recording, Mixing, Performance, etc. subforum. Moderator, if you think this should be moved, have at it.

Original Post follows:
======================
Well, the title sort of sez it all. The subject machine is my DAW. Right now my system is too easily sent into a frenzy of pops, clicks and crackles in my audio playback, and it's making it very difficult for me to generate decent quality audio files. I've even gone so far as making sure that no other program besides BiaB or RB is resident and that even unnecessary processes have been terminated (I use the Task Manager for this). Doing so helps some but not as much as I would have liked. All it takes is one click to ruin a recording. And I seldom get through an entire piece of music on this machine without at least one click being heard. So I'm kinda dead in the water right now if I want to use RB or BiaB going forward.

You know how RB has that little CPU Usage screen up in the top right corner. While a song is playing, the RB amount typically fluctuates between 17 and 20 %, while the Total number is usually only a couple of points higher. A similar readout in Cakewalk's Sonar delivers even lower numbers than these. I dunno about you, but to me these are quite low numbers and they seem to be indicating that my system still has plenty of reserve horsepower for this sort of work. So why all the noise? And why am I having such a noise problem with BiaB and RB when I don't with other DAW software like Sonar and Studio One 3?

My audio interface is an M-Audio Delta 66 PCI card, 24/96 capable, comes with an OMNI I/O unit that amounts to a compact mixer. It is a very quiet card. I'm running the M-Audio ASIO drivers. I've tried the MME drivers and they fare no better but the latency is worse. For MIDI, I'm using various synths for now, including Coyote and Sforzando.

My system is about five or six years old now. I don't recall exactly when I bought the MoBo and processor, but I do know that the MoBo is a really good one. As old as it is, it still supports recent processor technology. It is an AsRock 890 GX Pro 3 and takes AMD AM3 and AM3+ socket processors. Currently in the machine is an AM3 socket quad core AMD Phenom II X4 840 that's running at 3.44 GHz. So I'm thinking about upgrading to an AM3+ processor. The AsRock MoBo supports eight core processors, so whatever processor I do buy for it, it'll be an eight core. Prices range widely, from almost $300 to less than $100. I've got some homework to do before I make a decision.

Memory-wise, it's running 8 gigs of DDR3 SDRAM, and it has open slots for two more memory sticks. When I first upgraded my system to 8 gigs I thought that it would be a loooong time before I'd need more memory than that. Well, now, I'm not so sure anymore. I'm curious about what you folks think is adequate RAM for a DAW these days.

I just ran Geek Bench on it. I know some of you like to see these numbers, but I have no idea which numbers it is you like (although I'd like to), so how about them all? Here ya go:

Single-Core Performance

Single-Core Score 1879
Crypto Score 116
Integer Score 2218
Floating Point Score 1633
Memory Score 1928

AES 116
89.6 MB/sec

LZMA 2331
3.64 MB/sec

JPEG 2853
23.0 Mpixels/sec

Canny 1977
27.4 Mpixels/sec

Lua 2221
2.28 MB/sec

Dijkstra 2356
1.59 MTE/sec

SQLite 2262
62.7 Krows/sec

HTML5 Parse 2488
11.3 MB/sec

HTML5 DOM 952
862.7 KElements/sec

Histogram Equalization 1947
60.8 Mpixels/sec

PDF Rendering 2066
54.9 Mpixels/sec

LLVM 3586
246.6 functions/sec

Camera 2674
7.42 images/sec

SGEMM 558
11.8 Gflops

SFFT 1503
3.75 Gflops

N-Body Physics 1643
1.23 Mpairs/sec

Ray Tracing 1760
257.1 Kpixels/sec

Rigid Body Physics 2141
6267.9 FPS

HDR 2933
10.6 Mpixels/sec

Gaussian Blur 2048
35.9 Mpixels/sec

Speech Recognition 1493
12.8 Words/sec

Face Detection 1777
519.1 Ksubwindows/sec

Memory Copy 1105
3.06 GB/sec

Memory Latency 5828
74.3 ns

Memory Bandwidth 1113
5.95 GB/sec

Multi-Core Performance

Multi-Core Score 3192
Crypto Score 240
Integer Score 3995
Floating Point Score 3057
Memory Score 2324

AES 240
185.3 MB/sec

LZMA 4848
7.57 MB/sec

JPEG 4364
35.1 Mpixels/sec

Canny 3646
50.6 Mpixels/sec

Lua 3601
3.70 MB/sec

Dijkstra 4345
2.94 MTE/sec

SQLite 4301
119.3 Krows/sec

HTML5 Parse 4847
22.0 MB/sec

HTML5 DOM 2001
1.81 MElements/sec

Histogram Equalization 3726
116.4 Mpixels/sec

PDF Rendering 3338
88.7 Mpixels/sec

LLVM 6284
432.1 functions/sec

Camera 4207
11.7 images/sec

SGEMM 872
18.4 Gflops

SFFT 2343
5.84 Gflops

N-Body Physics 3325
2.48 Mpairs/sec

Ray Tracing 3179
464.3 Kpixels/sec

Rigid Body Physics 4485
13129.9 FPS

HDR 4892
17.7 Mpixels/sec

Gaussian Blur 4251
74.5 Mpixels/sec

Speech Recognition 2774
23.7 Words/sec

Face Detection 4176
1.22 Msubwindows/sec

Memory Copy 1514
4.20 GB/sec

Memory Latency 5495
78.8 ns

Memory Bandwidth 1510
8.07 GB/sec


Edited by cooltouch (11/22/17 09:53 PM)
_________________________
Best,
Michael

My Music:
https://soundcloud.com/michaelmcbroom/albums

Top
#439874 - 11/23/17 08:47 AM [Help! Tech S.O.S (Off topic)] Re: Wondering if my System lacks the >>oomph<< and what I need for BiaB and RB [Re: cooltouch]
Guitarhacker Offline
Veteran

Registered: 04/03/09
Posts: 5691
Generally when you have clicks, pops, and drops, the issue is most often related to the sound card and the drivers. Most computers, even old ones, are very capable of running modern audio recording software. In fact, all of mine are over 10 years old and run like champs. One is a duo-core laptop running Vista and the other is a custom build i5 Intel running XP pro 32. I run a Focusrite Saffire Firewire card on them (I can switch it as needed between the 2 machines) and they give me flawless recording and playback without glitches.

The PCI card format is a fairly old one. My first sound card was PCI. When the manufacturer refused to write updated drivers for the next MS operating system, it became totally useless and I was forced to purchase a new external interface.

Before you do any more upgrades to the computer itself, I'd buy a decent modern interface such as a Focusrite 2i2 USB external or something else similar. Be sure it supports native ASIO drivers and try that.

You might also want to see if there are updated ASIO drivers for your PCI card from the manufacturer and be sure you have the audio settings to 44.1k/16 or 44.1k/24. I looked this card up online and it shows it to have a 48k sampling rate. You need to switch it to 44.1k if you have that option. The other option is to convert everything else to 48k. You can NOT mix and match the sampling rates and expect to get good performance. There are reasons to use either but they're not compatible as far as I recall.

If it's not an option to switch the sampling to 44.1, buy an interface that does support 44.1k.


Edited by Guitarhacker (11/23/17 08:48 AM)
_________________________
You can find my music at:
www.herbhartley.com

Add nothing that adds nothing to the music

Top
#439999 - 11/23/17 01:46 PM [Help! Tech S.O.S (Off topic)] Re: Wondering if my System lacks the >>oomph<< and what I need for BiaB and RB [Re: cooltouch]
Kent - PG Music Offline
PG Music Staff

Registered: 11/05/08
Posts: 939
Hi Cooltouch,

It looks like your machine should have more than enough power to run Band-in-a-Box without issues. Which operating system are you using?

If you're using an ASIO audio driver, you might just need to increase its buffer size. In BIAB, go to Options - Preferences - Audio - Audio Drivers, then ASIO Driver's Control Panel, and look for a setting called "latency" or "buffer size". Then use trial and error to find the lowest settings that doesn't have pops and clicks.

Thanks
Kent
PG Music

Top
#440021 - 11/23/17 04:19 PM [Help! Tech S.O.S (Off topic)] Re: Wondering if my System lacks the >>oomph<< and what I need for BiaB and RB [Re: cooltouch]
Matt Finley Online   content
Veteran

Registered: 07/12/00
Posts: 17325
Loc: Hudson Valley & Lake George NY
Michael, BIAB makes more demands of your PC than SONAR, unless you have lots of plugins running in SONAR.

In BIAB you should look at Options, Preferences, RealTracks. There are a few options for slower computers. My production PC is more powerful than yours but I run with Fast Generation turned off.
_________________________
BIAB 2018 Win Audiophile; [& 2018 Mac UltraPak]. Software: Mixcraft, Adobe Audition, Ozone, Encore; Win 10 64 Pro. Hardware: custom i7, 16 Gb; Roland Integra-7, Focusrite 18i20(2), TCE Finalizer, Behringer X-Touch, Adam sub & monitors.

Top
#440100 - 11/23/17 09:45 PM [Help! Tech S.O.S (Off topic)] Re: Wondering if my System lacks the >>oomph<< and what I need for BiaB and RB [Re: cooltouch]
cooltouch Offline
Apprentice

Registered: 12/20/11
Posts: 222
Loc: Houston, Texas
Matt, my machine had the fast generation checked, so I unchecked it.

Kent, glad to hear this machine has the hp to run the PG products. I've always thought it should. The OS is Win7 64bit.

I usually have the ASIO drivers enabled with this card (it has its own ASIO drivers). But for some strange reason when I took a look, MME was enabled. ??? So I switched it back over to ASIO. My card's buffers were set to 512. I upped them to 1024.

Guitarhacker, I have the latest drivers installed for my Delta 66 card. It automatically downgrades itself to 44.1k if that's what the software requires. Actually this card supports 24/96 -- as well as intermediate rates. I run it at 24/96 in Sonar and Studio One 3.

I have a Scarlett 2i4 that I originally bought for my iPad, but which I've also used with my laptop. Unfortunately, it's down with electrical problems right now. I also have another interface around here somewhere that's more or less equivalent to the 2i4. It's still packed up in a box somewhere (we've moved recently and I'm still unpacking boxes). But I don't really need them with this machine. That Delta 66 has historically handled audio chores with ease. It typically runs -- with ASIO drivers -- at somewhere around 8 to 12 msec of latency. I can live with those numbers.

Here's hoping the driver switch and increased buffer size is gonna take care of this problem. I'm listening to a tune in BiaB right now that's using one VSTi and a trio of RealTracks in addition to one midi track. So far no clicks or pops.


Edited by cooltouch (11/23/17 09:52 PM)
_________________________
Best,
Michael

My Music:
https://soundcloud.com/michaelmcbroom/albums

Top
#440191 - 11/24/17 07:00 AM [Help! Tech S.O.S (Off topic)] Re: Wondering if my System lacks the >>oomph<< and what I need for BiaB and RB [Re: cooltouch]
Guitarhacker Offline
Veteran

Registered: 04/03/09
Posts: 5691
Originally Posted By: cooltouch

Here's hoping the driver switch and increased buffer size is gonna take care of this problem. I'm listening to a tune in BiaB right now that's using one VSTi and a trio of RealTracks in addition to one midi track. So far no clicks or pops.


keeping fingers crossed.......
_________________________
You can find my music at:
www.herbhartley.com

Add nothing that adds nothing to the music

Top
#440205 - 11/24/17 07:43 AM [Help! Tech S.O.S (Off topic)] Re: Wondering if my System lacks the >>oomph<< and what I need for BiaB and RB [Re: cooltouch]
Matt Finley Online   content
Veteran

Registered: 07/12/00
Posts: 17325
Loc: Hudson Valley & Lake George NY
Very good. Just a suggestion: change one thing at a time. That way you are more likely to learn which one made the difference.
_________________________
BIAB 2018 Win Audiophile; [& 2018 Mac UltraPak]. Software: Mixcraft, Adobe Audition, Ozone, Encore; Win 10 64 Pro. Hardware: custom i7, 16 Gb; Roland Integra-7, Focusrite 18i20(2), TCE Finalizer, Behringer X-Touch, Adam sub & monitors.

Top
#440243 - 11/24/17 10:23 AM [Help! Tech S.O.S (Off topic)] Re: Wondering if my System lacks the >>oomph<< and what I need for BiaB and RB [Re: cooltouch]
cooltouch Offline
Apprentice

Registered: 12/20/11
Posts: 222
Loc: Houston, Texas
Matt, hehe, I've been down that road more than once. Didn't do that this time, though. Well, I tried it out with only the fast regeneration unchecked first. That seemed to have helped. But when I found that this machine was using the MME driver, I just had to get rid of it.

I just played back that same BiaB file that I was trying earlier. This time though I had a couple of CPU intensive tasks running in the background. No hiccups, pops or clicks. I see that as a good sign.
_________________________
Best,
Michael

My Music:
https://soundcloud.com/michaelmcbroom/albums

Top
#440253 - 11/24/17 11:34 AM [Help! Tech S.O.S (Off topic)] Re: Wondering if my System lacks the >>oomph<< and what I need for BiaB and RB [Re: cooltouch]
Matt Finley Online   content
Veteran

Registered: 07/12/00
Posts: 17325
Loc: Hudson Valley & Lake George NY
Very good! I ask only so I can answer a question (or you and others can) when this comes up again (and it will).

So if I understand your post correctly, the combination of these two changes worked, but the checkbox got you mostly there? That sounds right to me. MME gets a bad rap sometimes. It’s generally fine unless you are recording with a keyboard along with BIAB playing.
_________________________
BIAB 2018 Win Audiophile; [& 2018 Mac UltraPak]. Software: Mixcraft, Adobe Audition, Ozone, Encore; Win 10 64 Pro. Hardware: custom i7, 16 Gb; Roland Integra-7, Focusrite 18i20(2), TCE Finalizer, Behringer X-Touch, Adam sub & monitors.

Top
#440262 - 11/24/17 11:56 AM [Help! Tech S.O.S (Off topic)] Re: Wondering if my System lacks the >>oomph<< and what I need for BiaB and RB [Re: cooltouch]
cooltouch Offline
Apprentice

Registered: 12/20/11
Posts: 222
Loc: Houston, Texas
I'm not really sure just how much good unchecking fast generation helped. I suppose I could give things a listen with it checked, then unchecked, before I give it a critical evaluation.

I've had varying luck with MME. Sometimes it behaves well and other times it apparently misbehaves. The different nature is probably due to whatever else I have running in the background. For example, right now I'm listening to a tune that has five tracks, only one of which is a real track -- drums, plus a VSTi on the melody instrument. And I'm getting a fair amount of static. But I have one window open that's downloading a file, plus I've got my browser open and it currently has 15 tabs open. And windows explorer's file window is open so I can click on .wav files I'm generating to try with Windows Media Player, which is also open. So I reckon if I closed a few of these windows that might help things. Actually, right at this moment the song is sounding very clean. The one window that was d/l'ing a file has finished. That might have helped things. Heh. Otherwise, I haven't closed anything yet. So as you can see there's some variability with this whole pops/crackles/drops thing.
_________________________
Best,
Michael

My Music:
https://soundcloud.com/michaelmcbroom/albums

Top
#440939 - 11/27/17 07:02 AM [Help! Tech S.O.S (Off topic)] Re: Wondering if my System lacks the >>oomph<< and what I need for BiaB and RB [Re: cooltouch]
Guitarhacker Offline
Veteran

Registered: 04/03/09
Posts: 5691
Originally Posted By: cooltouch



I've had varying luck with MME. Sometimes it behaves well and other times it apparently misbehaves. The different nature is probably due to whatever else I have running in the background. For example, right now I'm listening to a tune that has five tracks, only one of which is a real track -- drums, plus a VSTi on the melody instrument. And I'm getting a fair amount of static. ......... So as you can see there's some variability with this whole pops/crackles/drops thing.


it's been my experience working with DAWs and helping new people on the Cakewalk forums, that MME doesn't generally do well with synths. VST's and midi seem to cause problems. You can turn right around and load a totally 100% audio project and get flawless playback in the same session. It's when you have VST's running that problems tend to occur. Sometimes changing the buffers does the trick but often not, and only using ASIO drivers with the proper hardware makes the difference.
_________________________
You can find my music at:
www.herbhartley.com

Add nothing that adds nothing to the music

Top
#441424 - 11/28/17 09:18 PM [Help! Tech S.O.S (Off topic)] Re: Wondering if my System lacks the >>oomph<< and what I need for BiaB and RB [Re: cooltouch]
jazzmammal Offline
Veteran

Registered: 06/08/05
Posts: 6505
Loc: Redondo Beach, Ca.
Biab 2018 now uses the WASAPI driver called Windows Audio Session (WAS) and it's backwards compatible to Vista. On a decent system it's giving latency down to 25ms. Not quite as good as ASIO but plenty good enough for many.

Bob
_________________________
Biab/RB latest build, Win 10 64 bit, Intel 4770, 256 Gig SSD, 16 Gigs Ram, Roland Sonic Cell, Kurzweil PC3, Hammond SK1, Korg PA1XPro, Garritan JABB, Hypercanvas, Sampletank 3, more.

Top
#442477 - 12/04/17 12:05 AM [Help! Tech S.O.S (Off topic)] Re: Wondering if my System lacks the >>oomph<< and what I need for BiaB and RB [Re: cooltouch]
cooltouch Offline
Apprentice

Registered: 12/20/11
Posts: 222
Loc: Houston, Texas
Yeah, I've read briefly about these new audio drivers. I still haven't made my mind up about whether I'll be upgrading to 2018 soon. The special PG has going on is tempting. I wonder if the 49 pack they're offering now is the same as what I bought with 2017. And the 2017 version I bought came with the "Everything Pack" so I'm wondering just how much new stuff will be included in 2018. I've noticed that 2018 is not being offered with an Everything Pack version. Have they renamed it perhaps?

So Bob, have you upgraded to 2018? I'm curious, does one install it over 2017, or does one install it into a new directory, preserving the older version? I'm inclined to do the latter, even though, from what I have learned, BiaB is typically installed into just a /bb subdirectory.

The most recent version prior to 2017 that I have is 2014 and I had installed it on a different machine than this on.


Edited by cooltouch (12/04/17 12:22 AM)
_________________________
Best,
Michael

My Music:
https://soundcloud.com/michaelmcbroom/albums

Top
#442480 - 12/04/17 12:55 AM [Help! Tech S.O.S (Off topic)] Re: Wondering if my System lacks the >>oomph<< and what I need for BiaB and RB [Re: cooltouch]
Matt Finley Online   content
Veteran

Registered: 07/12/00
Posts: 17325
Loc: Hudson Valley & Lake George NY
Yes, they changed the package name this year.

Most users install new versions over the old. This saves space and preserves custom settings, user styles and Bonus Pak purchases.
_________________________
BIAB 2018 Win Audiophile; [& 2018 Mac UltraPak]. Software: Mixcraft, Adobe Audition, Ozone, Encore; Win 10 64 Pro. Hardware: custom i7, 16 Gb; Roland Integra-7, Focusrite 18i20(2), TCE Finalizer, Behringer X-Touch, Adam sub & monitors.

Top
#442551 - 12/04/17 08:48 AM [Help! Tech S.O.S (Off topic)] Re: Wondering if my System lacks the >>oomph<< and what I need for BiaB and RB [Re: Matt Finley]
cooltouch Offline
Apprentice

Registered: 12/20/11
Posts: 222
Loc: Houston, Texas
Oh good. Over the years, I've bought various extras. I think I have all the styles that were available up to v2014, and then whatever new styles I got with the Everything Pack and 49 Pack this year. And they are all in my bb subdirectory. Plus I have hundreds of realbook-style tunes and hundreds of midi tunes, all which I located inside the bb directory, for better or worse. So I'd just as soon not have to move all that stuff.

I guess my only concern with 2018 will be bugs. BiaB has never been a bug-free environment for me and I'm concerned if I go for an early release of the next version, I'm gonna pick up another helping of fresh bugs.

I suppose I'm also concerned about system requirements. I feel like with this system, which is plenty fast enough for Sonar and Studio One 3 and Notion, it's at the ragged edge with both BiaB and RB. I plan to upgrade the system's RAM from 8 gigs to 16. I'm hoping that may put things off for a while. I can also buy a faster processor. The mobo takes AMD, either AM3 or AM3+ sockets. The processor I have now is a quad-core AM3, and it's possible to upgrade to an AM3+ eight-core. But I'll have to find a used one or NOS, since they've stopped making the ones that will work with my six-year-old mobo. Still it'll be faster than what I have now, just not a great deal faster.
_________________________
Best,
Michael

My Music:
https://soundcloud.com/michaelmcbroom/albums

Top


Moderator:  Andrew - PG Music, PeterGannon 
PG Music News
Band-in-a-Box® 2018 for Windows Build 520 Available!

Band-in-a-Box® Version 2018 for Windows users can download the latest free patch update, Build 250, here.

Summary of changes for Build 520 since 519 (July 17 2018):
Added: Save As style feature has support for MIDI velocity changes if volumes aren’t 90 on mixer when saved.
Added: Support for MIDI velocity changes in styles. Use the Misc-More dialog in StyleMaker to set velocity changes in MIDI styles.
Fixed: [Style Memos etc] button was not visible in the Style Editor -> Misc dialog.
Fixed: Bar lines would not display properly in the Audio Edit window if launching through the menu item "Audio Chord Wizard (Audio Edit)".
Fixed: Hitting the Return key while in the Audio Edit window might trigger Loop Screen mode.
Updated: PDF Manual and Help.

User Blog - Recording and Processing Vocals Using RealBand...

Joanne Cooper's latest blog post is a "start to finish" of how she records and processes vocals for her songs using her three "go-to" programs: RealBand, Melodyne, and Nectar from Izotope (with a little help from Band-in-a-Box...)!

Check out this blog post here.

Video - Using MIDI SuperTracks in Band-in-a-Box® for Windows!

Learn how you can add MIDI SuperTracks to your Band-in-a-Box® song?

Using MIDI SuperTracks in Band-in-a-Box® for Windows!

Video - Using MIDI SuperTracks in Band-in-a-Box® for Mac!

Learn how you can add MIDI SuperTracks to your Band-in-a-Box® song?

Using MIDI SuperTracks in Band-in-a-Box® for Mac!

Musician Brent Mason in the Studio Recording RealTracks!

Before leaving Nashville, Tobin caught up with Brent Mason recording some future RealTracks in the studio.

We can't wait to hear them!

Video - Adding RealTracks to Your Band-in-a-Box® Song

There are 300 RealTracks Sets available (over 2,500 RealTracks!), and here at PG Music we have this to say about them: You'll want to use RealTracks in all of your projects... and you can!

But what if you're not sure how to add them to your Band-in-a-Box® song? We have a video for that! Click here to watch...

Save Notation Window as a Video with Band-in-a-Box® 2018 for Mac

Did you know... Band-in-a-Box® 2018 for Mac allows you to save the Notation Window as a video? What a great way to share your songs with users, and LEARN from the notation as you listen!

From the program manual:
[Save As] | Save as video
-In the Make Notation Video dialog, select a track at the upper left corner. (Note: The dialog title says “Make Chord Sheet Video” until you select a track.)
-You can also set the dimension (width/height) of the video and select the number of frames per second and a specific codec.
-Press the [OK - Render Video] button to start rendering the video. When the video has been created, press the [Show Video File] button.
-You can then double click on the file to watch the rendered video.

Note: A special use of this feature is to combine a Video RealTracks (new with version 2018) with the corresponding notation in a single video. This creates an educational video, which shows the actual performance with notation/tab, playing over your chord progression! To do this, right-click on the Master button or one of the track buttons at the top of the main screen and select Render Video(s) from the menu.

Forum Stats
27720 Members
50 Forums
52612 Topics
436109 Posts

Max Online: 2434 @ 11/14/17 12:37 AM
Newest Members
Biazine, walletss, Hcarry51, sosa, LaurieS

27720 Registered Users
Top Posters (30 Days)
David Snyder 160
Al-David 150
Noel96 145
beatmaster 128
Janice & Bud 119
Deryk - PG Music 111
MarioD 108
dcuny 104
Ember - PG Music 102
rsdean 102
Today's Birthdays
timbalera, WineRider