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TWEAK PC for DAW Usage

Discussion in 'Recording' started by eBrown100, May 13, 2005.

  1. eBrown100

    eBrown100 Guest

    I have purchased a new PC from Dell, a Dimension 3000.
    -P4 3.0ghz(800mhz bus)
    -250 DDR MB (will upgrade to 2ghz of DDR1 or DDR2 Ram)
    -DVD Burner
    -Hard drive. Maxtor 80gig (250gig Western Dig. from previous PC).
    -15" Flat Panel Display
    Paid $532.00

    How do I tweak this thing out so that it is optimized for RECORDING ONLY? No internet, no virus protection, no movies, etc.

    I need advice, websites, links to websites, books, etc.

    I plan to use Sonar 4 Producer, Reason, FL studio, Battery 2, and lots of plugins and other Virtual Instruments.

    I also use a few USB midi devices like M-Audio's Trigger Finger, Edirol PCR 50, Evolution's UC33, and M-Audio MS2X4 for my drum machine and a Roland CDX1 8-Track Recorder.
  2. Boneafide

    Boneafide Active Member

    Go to this site for the best info.


    this one is also useful

  3. David French

    David French Well-Known Member

    Here's a link to Gary Brenner's (a.k.a. Opus 2000) 'classic' XP DAW tweak.

  4. eBrown100

    eBrown100 Guest

    Thanks Gentlemen. If you know of any books or anything, please post it here. If there are any absolute "DO NOT" do's let me know about those too. Thanks.
  5. David French

    David French Well-Known Member

    IMO, this one is not a good idea.

  6. eBrown100

    eBrown100 Guest

    Thanks for the advice David. This instruction particular set of instructions, apparently, must create more problems than it solves.

    My thing is this, I would like for the power of the cpu to be optimized so that I can add more tracks and do more signal processing. Also I don't won't any dropouts on the audio engine in Sonar 4. If I can do handful of tweaks and accomplish this then good, but if I'm taking a risk at screwing something up, then I'd rather not tweak.

    Do you guys suggest keeping any softwares that are usually bundled with a computer? I thought that keeping NOTEPAD would be a good idea. I use it now to jot down ideas for songs or marketing a CD or even ideas about how to mix a certain song. If you have any other suggestions about optimizing a PC for Recording I'm all ears. Thanks
  7. David French

    David French Well-Known Member

    I don't see the need to remove any windows software components. To get the most out of your CPU, just make sure to limit the number of processes that are running in the background.
  8. eBrown100

    eBrown100 Guest

    I see. I didn't know that you could do that. I imagine that all of this is done in the control panel. Or is it not?
  9. David French

    David French Well-Known Member

    Go to start, run, type, msconfig, and go to the startup tab.
  10. TeddyG

    TeddyG Well-Known Member

    Before starting on a tweak program, my best suggestion to you is to put together a complete backup system first! Windows backup, etc., ain't enough... You will make a million tweaks in the years ahead. To be able to restore all your HD's, just the way you had them with a button push or two and get back to work is the most valuable tweak you can make for you and your machine. That said -

    I wonder, with a new Dell, if you get a "standard' Microsoft disk of XP? In the past, several major computer sellers have supplied their own version of the OS, generally with MANY bad(At least for us!) pieces of demo software, different ways of doing things, etc... If you have a Dell OS disk, not an MS, make sure to watch carefully as you install the OS, do a "custom" install wherever offered(Usually, the offering of a "custom" install, along with a "recommended" install on the disk for ANY software MEANS "If you don't tell us not to, we're going to install stuff you likely don't want - here's your chance!!!).

    If the OS is already installed but it came with a Dell OS disk, you may benefit from an investigation of just what's ON the Dell OS disk - and is now on your computer! Further, you may benefit by going as far as "pitching" the Dell disk and getting an MS XP disk, from elsewhere??? Again, I don't know what Dell does - just a little friendly advice......

    With Windows 2000(I don't have XP, but suspect it's similar.), you can put some services Windows runs by default to "manual" or "disabled". There are several sites describing Windows services and suggestions for ones you'll need and ones you won't. I've seen machines running 40+ services!!! I run 14-17 running, with internet and VP/FW disabled, again, on Windows 2000Pro. With services, you can always try manual or disable and if you don't like the results just put it back the way it was...

    Great to keep a note/log of your tweaks, so you can un-tweak the bad suggestions - and there will be some! For instance, when I got cable internet it took 2 hours to figure out that it wouldn't work because I had turned off a - now needed - service months before... AND, at least with W2K, there are one or two services that SHOULD be disabled, for internet safety...

    A small free program I have found to be VERY helpful is "Startup", by Mike Linn. Comes right up with a Google search. I recommend downloading and using the "standalone" version, as I/we want nothing that may be automatic, running on our machines and nothing "extra" installed... With the standalone you just download it to your desktop and run it when you need it, close it and its done, quit, over - 'til next time. "Startup", let's you see and make changes in the programs that "startup" and run at Windows boot. VERY convenient! Instructional, as well. And again, if you stop something and find that was the wrong road, just go back into Startup and start it up again... Cool......

    The Windows Annoyances site is full of goodies, too...

    PCPitstop is a good, simple "check" site, to see how things are running. They DO install "stuff", but I have never had a problem with it and it seems to run only when PCPitstop is in use...

    Also Everest, has a free version on-line. It allows you to "see" everything on your computer! EVERYTHING! Not a tweak, perse, but very handy indeed..!


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