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#542059 - 06/20/19 05:34 PM [RealBand] Why doesn't RB multitask when generating tracks?
Registered: 04/17/18
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muzikluver Offline
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I asked this question twice in another thread but didn't get an answer from anyone, so I decided to ask this question as a new post in this forum. My question is as follows:

Why doesn't RB multitask when it is generating multiple tracks for a song? If I select a Style with four instruments (elec. guitar, acoustic guitar, bass guitar, and drums), why doesn't RB assign the generation of the track for each instrument to a different core of my PC's Quad core processor? This would speed up the track generation process by a factor of four and make RB much more appealing and productive.

If I were to ask Format Factory to convert four .WAV files to four .MP3 files, it will convert all four of those files at the same time. RB should be able to do the same thing, shouldn't it? Or is there some underlying reason why it can't? After all, my understanding is that RB was first released in 2008, which is around the same year that my Quad Core PC was built. Plus, multitasking has been part of the Windows OS for much longer than that.
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#542264 - 06/21/19 04:42 PM [RealBand] Re: Why doesn't RB multitask when generating tracks? [Re: muzikluver]
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rharv Offline
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RB is really PT (Powertracks) at its core.
It is basically PT with BiaB features added.

And PT has been around since the 90's .. still 32 bit and with its caveats.

Some of us have been asking/pining/whining/wishing for a 64 bit RB/PT update with these type of features for a while now.
So far no luck.

/I don't think multitask was the right term, but I get what you mean
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#542266 - 06/21/19 05:08 PM [RealBand] Re: Why doesn't RB multitask when generating tracks? [Re: rharv]
Registered: 04/17/18
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muzikluver Offline
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Thanks, rharv, for replying to my post and for sharing that info. Considering RB's indirect 90s origins, it makes sense now to me why it doesn't multitask. But it sure would be nice if it did anyway!! Thanks again!
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#542269 - 06/21/19 05:58 PM [RealBand] Re: Why doesn't RB multitask when generating tracks? [Re: muzikluver]
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rharv Offline
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In this thread you keep saying multitask when I think you mean more like multithread .. which you used in other posts
But I think I get what you mean
smile
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#542274 - 06/21/19 06:51 PM [RealBand] Re: Why doesn't RB multitask when generating tracks? [Re: rharv]
Registered: 04/17/18
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muzikluver Offline
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You are correct, rharv! I do mean multi-threading. Thanks for pointing that out. It's been over fifteen years since I left the research/engineering environment I use to work in where such terms were commonly used, so my memory of the differences between multi-threading and multitasking is a bit foggy. The following points clarify their differences:

Key Differences Between Multitasking and Multithreading in OS

1. The basic difference between multitasking and multithreading is that in multitasking, the system allows executing multiple programs and tasks at the same time, whereas, in multithreading, the system executes multiple threads of the same or different processes at the same time.

2. In multitasking CPU has to switch between multiple programs so that it appears that multiple programs are running simultaneously. On other hands, in multithreading CPU has to switch between multiple threads to make it appear that all threads are running simultaneously.

3. Multitasking allocates separate memory and resources for each process/program whereas, in multithreading threads belonging to the same process shares the same memory and resources as that of the process.

(From the following website: https://www.quora.com/What-is-difference-between-multithreading-and-multitasking)
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#542395 - 06/22/19 02:58 PM [RealBand] Re: Why doesn't RB multitask when generating tracks? [Re: muzikluver]
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Jim Fogle Offline
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Some developers call the feature core load balancing or core scaling. There is some discussion among developers if it is a feature better handled by individual programs, the computer operating system or by hardware (cpu and supporting chipset).

Beside considering the aging 32 bit infrastructure RealBand uses, an argument can be made that a single thread program like RealBand is more resource tolerant than a multi thread program. While many computers use multi core cpus Intel continues to make, sell and ship single core Pentium and Atom cpus.
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#542506 - 06/23/19 11:33 AM [RealBand] Re: Why doesn't RB multitask when generating tracks? [Re: Jim Fogle]
Registered: 04/17/18
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muzikluver Offline
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Originally Posted By: Jim Fogle
Some developers call the feature core load balancing or core scaling. There is some discussion among developers if it is a feature better handled by individual programs, the computer operating system or by hardware (cpu and supporting chipset).

Beside considering the aging 32 bit infrastructure RealBand uses, an argument can be made that a single thread program like RealBand is more resource tolerant than a multi thread program.

I think that's a valid argument, Jim, and may explain why RB doesn't multi-thread. To me, it would be worse for RB to be forced to start accessing the HD for one or more of the tracks it is generating in a multi-threaded scenario then for RB to just plow through them one at a time without accessing the HD. Of course, this wouldn't be a problem if the main drive in the computer is an SSD rather than an HD.
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#542519 - 06/23/19 01:02 PM [RealBand] Re: Why doesn't RB multitask when generating tracks? [Re: muzikluver]
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Jim Fogle Offline
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One approach I believe Pipeline suggested in other threads is to load RealTracks into computer ram whenever a RealTrack title is first loaded into an empty track. Ram is typically faster and more accessible than a storage drive. Some people worry about how much ram would be used but it is surprising how efficient RealBand is with memory. What size is your song project SEQ file? How long in time and how many tracks does it contain?

RealTracks are stored as compressed files (either wma or mp4a I think) unless you have the Audiophile edition. To save regeneration time some users have converted all their compressed files to uncompressed files (wav or aif)to eliminate conversion and reduce load times. Both Band-in-a-Box and RealBand will load an uncompressed file whenever both compressed and uncompressed choices are available.

I realize this expectation is unrealistic from a marketing and sales viewpoint but I would LOVE IT if PG Music suspended adding new features for a year and just concentrated on fixing known deficiencies to make their products more reliable and stable. Band-in-a-Box, RealBand, the plugin and the associated content are amazing products but there are A LOT of loose ends.
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#542554 - 06/23/19 10:16 PM [RealBand] Re: Why doesn't RB multitask when generating tracks? [Re: Jim Fogle]
Registered: 04/17/18
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muzikluver Offline
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Those are great suggestions, Jim. I'll have to keep them in mind.

I remember reading a post a while back (I can't remember which forum it was in) that also expressed the same desire for PG Music to suspend adding new features for a year and just concentrate on fixing known deficiencies. It may have been your post, but I'm not sure. I would love to see PG Music do this, too, but you're probably right about it being an unrealistic expectation. Maybe they would consider doing this if users would start referring to all those deficiency fixes as desirable features and mentioned them as such in the wish list forums. Just a thought . . .
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#542610 - 06/24/19 12:18 PM [RealBand] Re: Why doesn't RB multitask when generating tracks? [Re: Jim Fogle]
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muzikluver Offline
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Originally Posted By: Jim Fogle
I realize this expectation is unrealistic from a marketing and sales viewpoint but I would LOVE IT if PG Music suspended adding new features for a year and just concentrated on fixing known deficiencies to make their products more reliable and stable. Band-in-a-Box, RealBand, the plugin and the associated content are amazing products but there are A LOT of loose ends.

I have another thought about this. Perhaps a more realistic expectation would be for us to prod PG Music to reduce their "new features" efforts by 50% and to redirect those reduced efforts towards fixing known deficiencies. That would be a win-win situation for both PG Music and its users.
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#542613 - 06/24/19 12:39 PM [RealBand] Re: Why doesn't RB multitask when generating tracks? [Re: muzikluver]
Registered: 08/13/09
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Loc: Ireland
musiclover Offline
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Originally Posted By: muzikluver
Originally Posted By: Jim Fogle
I realize this expectation is unrealistic from a marketing and sales viewpoint but I would LOVE IT if PG Music suspended adding new features for a year and just concentrated on fixing known deficiencies to make their products more reliable and stable. Band-in-a-Box, RealBand, the plugin and the associated content are amazing products but there are A LOT of loose ends.

I have another thought about this. Perhaps a more realistic expectation would be for us to prod PG Music to reduce their "new features" efforts by 50% and to redirect those reduced efforts towards fixing known deficiencies. That would be a win-win situation for both PG Music and its users.


No way, only 25 new features every year instead of 50, we can't have that, I need my 50 new features every year, and so far PG has not let me down.

smile
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#542617 - 06/24/19 01:09 PM [RealBand] Re: Why doesn't RB multitask when generating tracks? [Re: muzikluver]
Registered: 08/20/11
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Loc: Winston-Salem, NC USA
Jim Fogle Offline
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While some existing users maybe content with existing content and feature set that's not true for all existing users.

New Windows versions are usually released somewhere between the last Thursday in November (American Thanksgiving)and the second week of December. Even though I crave reliability and stability I'm as giddy as everyone else as I discover what's new with each release. It sure seems a lot like early Christmas presents each year.

Most non users have little to no awareness of (1) how good the audio content is and (2) how capable and powerful the programs are. I don't want to say Band-in-a-Box is overlooked because it's not. The problem runs deeper than that. More often than not non users are aware of Band-in-a-Box but choose to ignore it. They tried it back in the day and have NO IDEA how much it's changed.

The release of 64 bit and the plugin are helping overcome the preconceived notions enough for people to give it a try. PG Music having a presence at NAMM and the European music fair helps too.

Unfortunately I believe it will take five years of sustained effort to overcome the negative bias.
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