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I'm breaking up - aargh.
Last post Fri, Apr 06 2007 by DG, 22 replies.
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Posted on Wed, Apr 04 2007 09:55
by Mike McCarthy
Joined on Sun, Aug 22 2004, Auckland, New Zealand, Posts 115
Hello all - I know a lot has been said on this subject, but I'd really appreciate some pointers.

I'm using Special Edition on my slave P4:
3 GHz processor, 2 gig RAM
Sound card: M-Audio Delta
Buffer: 512
Host: Cubase SX
Midi interface: Midi-Over-Lan 3
VSL samples on seperate internal IDE drive, 320 gig, 7200 rpm Seagate.
Usual audio tweaks.

With only Violins/Violas/Cellos (both Orchestral & Solo) loaded, total 1.3 gig of RAM used, and playing a fairly fast passage with all sections playing unison, my CPU meter is hitting 100% and audio is breaking up.

I've tried bigger buffer settings, but to no avail, even at 1024.

Is the CPU cracking up because

1.Too much midi data?
2.Too much streaming data?
3.Too many calculations for the legato patches?

I really thought a 3 gHz processor would cope with this.

Thanks for any advice,
Mike.
Posted on Wed, Apr 04 2007 10:00
by DG
Joined on Wed, May 12 2004, Posts 8608
Mike, I have 3 slave PCs not much faster than this, and I've noticed none of these problems, and I tend to work at a buffer of 256 (via FX-Teleport). What Host are you using?

DG

Sorry, I should clarify that. What VST host are you using on the slave?
Nuendo 6.03, 4.3
2 x Intel Xeon x5675 3.07GHz Hex Core
48GB RAM
Windows 7 (x64)Pro
RME Multiface II
Intensity
ATI HD5400 series graphics card
Posted on Wed, Apr 04 2007 11:18
by Mike McCarthy
Joined on Sun, Aug 22 2004, Auckland, New Zealand, Posts 115
Hi DG - thanks for your time.

Host on both slaves is Cubase SX 2.

Both slaves are identical P4s with identical soundcards.

Both are breaking up under relatively light workloads.

I'm definitely doing something wrong - but I'm baffled as to why the CPU load is so high.

I don't think it's a buffer problem. Inadequate buffer-sizes usually don't manifest as CPU overloads.

BTW, my network is a gigabit with cat5 cabling, no hub.

Any thoughts?

Mike
Posted on Wed, Apr 04 2007 14:03
by DG
Joined on Wed, May 12 2004, Posts 8608
I suggest that you start at the beginning. Check that both PCs can play a fairly hefty MIDI file on their own piped into VI without using the network.

Then check your original file using a physical MIDI cable.

I don't use MOL so I can't help you with the setup of that.

DG
Nuendo 6.03, 4.3
2 x Intel Xeon x5675 3.07GHz Hex Core
48GB RAM
Windows 7 (x64)Pro
RME Multiface II
Intensity
ATI HD5400 series graphics card
Posted on Wed, Apr 04 2007 14:04
by DG
Joined on Wed, May 12 2004, Posts 8608
Two more thoughts. Are you using a crossover cable to connect the PCs? Are you using fixed IP?

DG
Nuendo 6.03, 4.3
2 x Intel Xeon x5675 3.07GHz Hex Core
48GB RAM
Windows 7 (x64)Pro
RME Multiface II
Intensity
ATI HD5400 series graphics card
Posted on Wed, Apr 04 2007 19:31
by Mike McCarthy
Joined on Sun, Aug 22 2004, Auckland, New Zealand, Posts 115
I will try the midi-file test today. Will get answers re the IP addresses & cabling from the person who set up the network.

I understand where you're going with this.

Much appreciated.

Mike.
Posted on Thu, Apr 05 2007 02:18
by Peregrine
Joined on Sun, May 28 2006, Scottsdale, Arizona, Posts 59
Hi Mike,

I had the same problem when I first started using the strings matrices. I moved them from a 2.6 gHz machine to a 3.4 gHz machine with no improvement, so I don't think its your chip. Your OS is taking 500Kb or more, so you're probably getting close to your RAM limit. If you're using the supplied matrices, start over with your own, using only the patches you need. This should give you some extra room to load samples. If your motherboard has two more memory slots available, I'd strongly suggest you install 2x1gb additional memory and enable the 3gb switch. You should then be able to run all of your string sections on a single slave.
Posted on Thu, Apr 05 2007 06:05
by Mike McCarthy
Joined on Sun, Aug 22 2004, Auckland, New Zealand, Posts 115
Thanks Peregrine - my custom matrices do in fact contain all 8 articulations! I did not realise that RAM and CPU usage were related. I thought one was "sample headroom" and the other was "processing power". I just assumed that if I kept within say 1.5 gig of loaded RAM, I'd be OK on a 2 gig machine, seeing as it's only acting as a Host.

DG's suggestion of running the offending midi file directly on the slave's VST host (Cubase SX) has ruled out any issues with my network or MOL. Thanks DG.

What's really wierd is that I was able to get glitch-free playback when I switched from my M-Audio soundcard's ASIO driver to "ASIO Multimedia Driver" - but with an unusable latency. CPU load was still close to 100% however.

Sigh. This pretty much rules out my hopes of running Special Edition on a 2 gig machine.

thank you very much for your invaluable assistance, as always.

Mike.
Posted on Thu, Apr 05 2007 07:53
by DG
Joined on Wed, May 12 2004, Posts 8608
OK. One more suggestion. Do this at your own risk.....!

Try setting up a dual boot using the /3Gig switch. Yes, I know that you only have 2Gb RAM, but I was able to get in excess of 1.9GB samples loaded on a similar machine. You will probably find that the machine will only be stable with 1.7-1.8GB loaded, but that may well give you the headroom to avoid the pops and clicks.

I suggest a dual boot as if it all goes horribly wrong, you can still boot up the machine.

DG
Nuendo 6.03, 4.3
2 x Intel Xeon x5675 3.07GHz Hex Core
48GB RAM
Windows 7 (x64)Pro
RME Multiface II
Intensity
ATI HD5400 series graphics card
Posted on Thu, Apr 05 2007 07:58
by DG
Joined on Wed, May 12 2004, Posts 8608
OK, another suggestion. I'm really getting the bit between the teeth now. Big Smile

Download a trial version of Forte and try that. Also try a demo version of Chainer, if there is one. I think that both these apps use much less RAM and CPU than Cubase, so that might help.

DG
Nuendo 6.03, 4.3
2 x Intel Xeon x5675 3.07GHz Hex Core
48GB RAM
Windows 7 (x64)Pro
RME Multiface II
Intensity
ATI HD5400 series graphics card
Posted on Thu, Apr 05 2007 10:23
by Mike McCarthy
Joined on Sun, Aug 22 2004, Auckland, New Zealand, Posts 115
thanks DG - I'm willing to give it a bash [Indifferent]

I never thought a network of 3 P4s each with 2 gig of RAM would run out of RAM. Hah! Big Smile

After you mentioned your success with FXT, I dusted off and reinstalled mine - but the breakups persisted - I guess because the slaves are at their RAM limits.

I will give Forte and Chainer a try.

Many thanks,
Mike
Posted on Thu, Apr 05 2007 23:28
by Mike McCarthy
Joined on Sun, Aug 22 2004, Auckland, New Zealand, Posts 115
I'm ready to take the /3gig switch plunge.

I've tried a search, but my screen just went blank.

Could someone give me a link to the step-by-step setup procedure?

Many thanks,
Mike.
Posted on Fri, Apr 06 2007 00:53
by Peregrine
Joined on Sun, May 28 2006, Scottsdale, Arizona, Posts 59
Hi Mike,

First, in order for any of this to work efficiently, you'll need to have 4gb ram installed on the slave running VSL patches.

Second, you'll need to edit your boot.ini file to add a logon option for the 3gb system version. Your boot.ini file will end up looking something like:


[boot loader]
timeout=3
default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\\WINDOWS
[operating systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition 3GB" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect /3GB
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect

Third your host application and the vst dll files need to be large address aware. You'll need to edit their command lines, and that can be done easily with LAATIDO, a utility Mattias wrote. I haven't checked, but it was last available at: http://www.musikbanken.se/laatidosetup.exe

More reading on this can be found in this forum under the sticky topic that has Mattias' name on it.
Posted on Fri, Apr 06 2007 06:01
by cm
Joined on Fri, Dec 20 2002, vienna, Posts 9145
in most cases you need to add also the /USERVA switch with a value of about 3000 (basic rule: real memory in MB minus 1024 minus ~100)
so ending up with the _additional_ line:
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition 3GB" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect /3GB /USERVA 2950

what you get so is a dual-boot system (normal should be the default and as option to select during boot the /3GB) - you might want to increase the timeout (in seconds) otherwise you could miss the screen to select the configuration (use cursor up/down to select)
christian
and remember: a CRAY is the only computer that runs an endless loop in just four hours ...
Posted on Fri, Apr 06 2007 09:54
by Mike McCarthy
Joined on Sun, Aug 22 2004, Auckland, New Zealand, Posts 115
Thanks Peregrine and CM

1.How do I establish if Cubase SX2 is Large Address Aware?

Thanks again,
Mike.
Posted on Fri, Apr 06 2007 09:59
by DG
Joined on Wed, May 12 2004, Posts 8608
Firstly just to correct the wrong information:

1) You do not need 4GB RAM installed; 3 works fine.
2) It also can work with 2GB RAM installed, but it may be unstable.

Cubase SX2 is not LAA, so you will need to use something like masm32 (if I remember correctly) to "hack" the exe file. I'm sure that all of this is in the sticky on VI memory, as I remember typing it well over a year ago.

DG

Edit. I forgot about LAATIDO. That little app will confirm that Cubase SX is not LAA, but will hack it for you. Do remember that none of this is supported by Steinberg, so if in doubt either update to SX3,or change to a LAA host such as Forte.
Nuendo 6.03, 4.3
2 x Intel Xeon x5675 3.07GHz Hex Core
48GB RAM
Windows 7 (x64)Pro
RME Multiface II
Intensity
ATI HD5400 series graphics card
Posted on Fri, Apr 06 2007 10:14
by Mike McCarthy
Joined on Sun, Aug 22 2004, Auckland, New Zealand, Posts 115
Understood DG.

1.SX3 is no longer available as an upgrade. I'd have to go straight to Cubase 4 - and there are issues with C4.

2.I've had a look at Forte - and I like what I see. Pity the demo doesn't download Confused Anyone using it and happy?

3.Have been told that some graphics cards can cause audio glitches if you play while the VI GUI is open - will investigate this. Obviously clutching at straws by now...thank god for this forum.

Mike.
Posted on Fri, Apr 06 2007 10:32
by DG
Joined on Wed, May 12 2004, Posts 8608
Mike McCarthy wrote:
Understood DG.

1.SX3 is no longer available as an upgrade. I'd have to go straight to Cubase 4 - and there are issues with C4.

2.I've had a look at Forte - and I like what I see. Pity the demo doesn't download Confused Anyone using it and happy?

3.Have been told that some graphics cards can cause audio glitches if you play while the VI GUI is open - will investigate this. Obviously clutching at straws by now...thank god for this forum.

Mike.

Another option; upgrade to C4 (to get the licence) and then download SX3 from the Steinberg f t p. This is legal, as your dongle licence will allow you to run the earlier SX incarnations.

FWIW I've rolled all my students back to SX3 for compatibility reasons, as well as the fact that there is nothing in C4 with they need.

DG
Nuendo 6.03, 4.3
2 x Intel Xeon x5675 3.07GHz Hex Core
48GB RAM
Windows 7 (x64)Pro
RME Multiface II
Intensity
ATI HD5400 series graphics card
Posted on Fri, Apr 06 2007 10:45
by DG
Joined on Wed, May 12 2004, Posts 8608
Mike, check your PMs.

DG
Nuendo 6.03, 4.3
2 x Intel Xeon x5675 3.07GHz Hex Core
48GB RAM
Windows 7 (x64)Pro
RME Multiface II
Intensity
ATI HD5400 series graphics card
Posted on Fri, Apr 06 2007 10:58
by Mike McCarthy
Joined on Sun, Aug 22 2004, Auckland, New Zealand, Posts 115
Blow me down, the problem's solved. Big Smile

Closed the VI window and all pops & glitches disappear. Open a VI and they're back.

Embarrassingly simple solution Surpriseops: But if someone else is saved the 2 days of head-scratching I've just gone through, then it'll be worth it.

I have found the /3gig switch thread under Memory Configurations - will use this to implement the switch - once I'm confident that I'm not going to blow anything up.


Thanks to DG, Peregrine & CM for their help.
Mike.
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