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Windows 10 audio specific optimization.

I left off on xp years ago. Just wondering what you guys have been doing to w10 to streamline it. Any advice and links would be much appreciated.

Comments

DonnyThompson Thu, 12/31/2015 - 06:59
I have W10...

Truthfully, I don't really see the big deal with it; while it hasn't caused me any issues, I'm not noticing any specific improvements with performance or stability, either; then again, maybe it is better with certain things, and I just haven't noticed yet, because I haven't tried to do anything that would have been targeted as needing improvement in those areas in previous versions.

My main criteria is audio, and some video. It doesn't matter to me if W 10 is better for code writing, or power point, or AutoCAD, or any of the other things that people use a computer for.
As long as my audio platform is running stable, as long as I can be productive with those platforms and programs without bugs, glitches, or any other technical interruptions, then that's all I really care about.

I'd have been happy to stay with W7, as I felt it to be solid, stable... certainly more so than the dark days of Vista. And for that matter, I was plenty happy with XP; but after things started moving towards 64 bit in audio land, and because Microsoft was dumping all support for it, I made the move into 8.1, but only because that's what came resident on the new PC I bought that year.

I have no suggestions, Kyle. I'm one of those guys who adheres to the "if it ain't broke don't fix it" mentality. Maybe Marco or Chris would have suggestions...

But, if there is a way to improve performance or stability with audio programs ( or any multimedia apps), I'm most certainly going to at least listen to suggestions, even if I don't have any current complaints. ;)

audiokid Thu, 12/31/2015 - 10:35
The big one. Get a well designed CP with excellent USB ports and PCIe slots capable of interfacing the platform you choose. Stability and low latency is all about the right interface without sharing ports for the style of music you do most.

As of 2015, I cannot run production low latency studio on a laptop with large screen monitoring on a laptop. I can mix simple sessions or master on a laptop, but cannot run Midi or USB triggering controllers, 8 or more real time tracking lanes with low latency at a time on a weak PC and Sequoia without some pain, if not down right impossible.
The true test to this test is when you have 32 channels ready to mix, you are now into overdubbing or USB triggering and creating the detail of a song now. All the special stuff that happens after the bed tracks are done.

Example, I need to set a loop at bar 32 to 40, punch in the creative and the DAW keeps locking up or acting goofy. I am not only frustrated but the latency is also a pita.
A PCIe interface could do that with 64 channels loaded up, exaggerate a BPM at say, 180 bpm, loop the bars for 4 min and start punching in and out to trip it up. My DAW will never miss a bit on the clock. That is what a good PC with a top PCIe card matched to the ADDA gives you.

That being said...
I can can do it better on say Reaper or Ableton, but not Samplitude or Sequoia. Bigger DAW platforms need more dedicated ports or products or optimization.

Others may say they can but not to my standards from what I've tried to date. This might change with the new and improved CPU, USB3 or whatever comes 2016 forward... but the most import piece of equipment I need for my DAW to run seamlessly is a PCIe card recommended for the interface and a PC that will allow a dedicated port for midi and ADDA.

Other than that,
Limit using your tracking DAW to browse the internet. Browsers do weird stuff to a PC.
Remove, disable everything that calls back for software updates automatically.
and follow the general audio optimization tips we've been doing for years.

I look forward to the day we don't worry about processing speed and latency. I'm sure we're not too far off.

kmetal Thu, 12/31/2015 - 20:39
That's interesting. I'm actually very happy to hear you guys haven't had to go to tweakville w w10. I was worried with cortina and some of the graphic features it'd be rough.

Also w10 pro has Remote Desktop capabilities, and virtual machine capabilities. Mixing on your rig from the clients jam room anyone? Maybe just maybe it's possible. I couldn't be much more excited.

I have usb 3 and some available pcie slots. My first step is the berringer Ethernet interface cuz it's cheap and has similar I/o to the burl in contention. The big test is if Ethernet will cut it. If not gonna get a nice high end pcie interface cars for the burl.

Also the ddr4 Ram should make a significant differnce. The bench tests I saw were promising!!!

Still using dedicated midi ports Chris!???

Paging Marco pcrecord any tips? If anyone would know I'm guessing it'd be you buddy.

@Kurt Foster kurt jw what your running for a cpu hear days.??

DonnyThompson Fri, 01/01/2016 - 01:11
audiokid, post: 434814, member: 1 wrote: Remove, disable everything that calls back for software updates automatically.
How do I do this Chris?

I'm asking, because about 4 weeks ago, I received an auto update in the middle of the night, and when I got up the next morning, I went to go back to work on a project I'd been working on the night before, and I found that my PC had restarted itself.
Of course, I'd saved my work before I went to bed, but it was still a giant PITA to have to re-load the project file...

So, is there a way I can disable auto-updates?

Please keep in mind that I'm no PC "expert". I guess I'm saying that you should feel free to use visual aids and hand puppets to explain it to me if necessary. LOL ;)

pcrecord Fri, 01/01/2016 - 05:54
Laptops have a mind on their own and I think it's all pointing to battery time saving, heat control and building money saving. When the builders keep that as a priority, they mess up some the performances we would need to have good DAW performances. Of course I'm not talking about specially buildt for DAW laptops, but does pre-build we find everywhere. My god when I see 200-300$ laptops with AMD or penthium CPU, it makes me puke.. (sorry for the bad word..) those cheap laptops have the same or worst performances of those we decommissioned 5 years ago.. Call them posioned gift !!

For windows 8.1 the only thing I had to do to get good results on my destop was to deactivate the HPET option in the bios. But On my laptop I had a hard time to record 2 clean tracks without popups...
Of course nothing was on my side at the time. It was a one shot remote recording and I didn't took time to clean install the OS with DAW in mind OR tweak the current installation...

An interesting thing is that HPET option isn't present in my laptop's bios but I know it doesn't meen the technology is not active. Some laptops bios are not showing all the options a desktop would (specially if compared with a DYI one) See most corporate PC builders makes their own bios interfaces and they sometime hide some features to simplify the bios settings. I'm not saying the HPET was the problem with my laptop, just that it's very possible that if it was I could get screwed with not having the option to turn it off..

I'm still posponing my windows 10 installation at home and at the studio. Even if I wish it won't, I know it may take a bit of time get it run to my likings so I'm waiting for a downtime in my activities to do it..

As for those who got it and get hi latency, it's said that included audio drivers were optimised in win10. Trying other drivers then asio would be a thing to try.
Also, before trying all the optimisations tips online, Latencymon now comes with win10 support. It could help to identify what is slowing you down.
http://www.resplendence.com/latencymon

If you must go their, here is a basic optimisation guide (works even for non forcusrite users) :
http://us.focusrite.com/answerbase/optimising-your-pc-for-audio-on-windows-10

I'm gonna jump in the win10 adventure in a few weeks, I'll let you know how it turns out and what I did change to the basic installation ;)

audiokid Fri, 01/01/2016 - 07:19
pcrecord
I think we're all going to need Marco's expertise so I'm looking forward to your tweaks pal.
DonnyThompson, post: 434840, member: 46114 wrote: How do I do this Chris?

I'm asking, because about 4 weeks ago, I received an auto update in the middle of the night, and when I got up the next morning, I went to go back to work on a project I'd been working on the night before, and I found that my PC had restarted itself.
Of course, I'd saved my work before I went to bed, but it was still a giant PITA to have to re-load the project file...

So, is there a way I can disable auto-updates?

Please keep in mind that I'm no PC "expert". I guess I'm saying that you should feel free to use visual aids and hand puppets to explain it to me if necessary. LOL ;)

I have the Pro edition, the Home edition has less capability to defer updates for a later date and remove Apps.
I'm thinking the version to get is Enterprise . You have full control how it sets updates.

That being said, none of this may make any sense to the Home edition version users because you won't find the defer or remove App or updates. Its disabled, not visible.

Look for start up items and remove what you can.
Look in your Settings, remove or disable updates.
Look for notifications in the Action Center and get rig of them too.
Look for all ways to remove calling back to the App for updates.

From my reading, Enterprise is the one I think Pro Audio guys might be needing now. My Pro Edition is great, but it still calls back for Windows updates (at a later date). Most other Apps, I have and can disable.

pcrecord Fri, 01/01/2016 - 13:02
audiokid, post: 434848, member: 1 wrote: I think we're all going to need Marco's expertise so I'm looking forward to your tweaks pal.
This gives me one more motivation.. I'll keep you posted ;)

audiokid, post: 434848, member: 1 wrote: I have the Pro edition, the Home edition has less capability to defer updates for a later date and remove Apps.
I'm thinking the version to get is Enterprise . You have full control how it sets updates.

I came to the same conclusions, I'm gonna test the enterprise version. This is the one I'll be exposed in my day job anyway.
I have no doubt the pro version will be capable as well. I've runned windows 7 pro x86 and x64, windows 8.1 pro x64 for a while without and issue.
Chris, I'm sure we can deactivate the updates in the pro version. . . it may come to editing the services or some other hidden features. I'm gonna check upon that !
This is one guide I just found but haven't tested yet.

Installing windows is not the biggest job, it's all the audio tools and VSTi that will take time..

paulears Fri, 01/01/2016 - 14:47
I just had to rebuild my music system because the C drive failed, so I stuck windows 10 on it. What is good is that it seems to work fine - Cubase 8 installed fine so did Sony Soundforge and all the Adobe CC stuff. The install annoyed me because it is on a USB stick, which for some reason kept going down the boot order, despite setting it to be 1st boot device. At the end of the install cycle, it reboots back into the install programme, and I didn't realise and installed two versions of Windows! What is bad? I use at home a Tascam interface, but in the machine sits a Maya 4 in 4 out card which is oldish, but good when I take the computer out, as now. Windows 10 drivers are available but they don't work, and trying to activate the drivers crashes windows. Now it's gone back to the old start menu system, it's back to like Windows 7. Most things work perfectly well, a few things are in different places, that's all. AVG identified some of the windows programmes as problems - so I removed those. Start up is quite quick. So - I was forced into it, and it isn't remotely a problem bar the driver issues (The downloaded epson 1400 software package also crashed it, but downloading just the driver worked fine)

I've read the complaints and the moans about it doing things, but I rejected the microsoft browser in favour of safari and firefox and both of those work fine.

I can't get my favourite samplers to work because the discs are at home, and I could only download one of them. I shelled out forty quid to upgrade my accounts software that I use on it - I know I shouldn't, but it really lives on another machine, but when I go away for weeks at a time like now, one machine has to do double duty. Just out of curiosity, I tried the old version on windows 10, and it works perfectly - so I could have saved the upgrade cost. apparently the database format is 'newer' and this won't work on XP machines. They cunningly didn't mention that the old version works fine on 10! I assumed that the upgrade was necessary! Gullible.

My impression is that it's fine. All the Adobe stuff runs fine too - video and audio.

paulears Fri, 01/01/2016 - 15:20
I've always liked AVG. Oddly, I'm working with an individual who is into computers, and he thinks I'm mad for buying my software and my music. he is one of these music should be free merchants - and he tells me that he doesn't run antivirus any longer because respectable hackers are far cleverer, and if your computer is full of pirate software, if you get something, you just go back to the last clean image! He annoys me greatly, but is a nice guy, I think.

AVG has always worked for me, despite occasional forays into Pinky and Perky and Norton.

kmetal Fri, 01/01/2016 - 16:07
pcrecord, post: 434846, member: 46460 wrote: Laptops have a mind on their own and I think it's all pointing to battery time saving, heat control and building money saving. When the builders keep that as a priority, they mess up some the performances we would need to have good DAW performances. Of course I'm not talking about specially buildt for DAW laptops, but does pre-build we find everywhere. My god when I see 200-300$ laptops with AMD or penthium CPU, it makes me puke.. (sorry for the bad word..) those cheap laptops have the same or worst performances of those we decommissioned 5 years ago.. Call them posioned gift !!

For windows 8.1 the only thing I had to do to get good results on my destop was to deactivate the HPET option in the bios. But On my laptop I had a hard time to record 2 clean tracks without popups...
Of course nothing was on my side at the time. It was a one shot remote recording and I didn't took time to clean install the OS with DAW in mind OR tweak the current installation...

An interesting thing is that HPET option isn't present in my laptop's bios but I know it doesn't meen the technology is not active. Some laptops bios are not showing all the options a desktop would (specially if compared with a DYI one) See most corporate PC builders makes their own bios interfaces and they sometime hide some features to simplify the bios settings. I'm not saying the HPET was the problem with my laptop, just that it's very possible that if it was I could get screwed with not having the option to turn it off..

I'm still posponing my windows 10 installation at home and at the studio. Even if I wish it won't, I know it may take a bit of time get it run to my likings so I'm waiting for a downtime in my activities to do it..

As for those who got it and get hi latency, it's said that included audio drivers were optimised in win10. Trying other drivers then asio would be a thing to try.
Also, before trying all the optimisations tips online, Latencymon now comes with win10 support. It could help to identify what is slowing you down.
http://www.resplendence.com/latencymon

If you must go their, here is a basic optimisation guide (works even for non forcusrite users) :
http://us.focusrite.com/answerbase/optimising-your-pc-for-audio-on-windows-10

I'm gonna jump in the win10 adventure in a few weeks, I'll let you know how it turns out and what I did change to the basic installation ;)

Marco, you da man!!!!!

audiokid, post: 434848, member: 1 wrote: pcrecord
I think we're all going to need Marco's expertise so I'm looking forward to your tweaks pal.


I have the Pro edition, the Home edition has less capability to defer updates for a later date and remove Apps.
I'm thinking the version to get is Enterprise . You have full control how it sets updates.

That being said, none of this may make any sense to the Home edition version users because you won't find the defer or remove App or updates. Its disabled, not visible.

Looks for start up items and remove what you can.
Look in your Settings, remove or disable updates.
Look for notifications in the Action Center and get rig of them too.
Look for all ways to remove calling back to the App for updates.

From my reading, Enterprise is the one I think Pro Audio guys might be needing now. My Pro Edition is great, but it still calls back for Windows updates (at a later date). Most other Apps, I have and can disable.

Interesting observation Donny. The OS is my next purchase for the cpu, and I didn't even consider the enterprise version. Phew! My goal is to keep both machines indentical as far as drivers and OS tweaks, which is one reason i brought back the amd machine, the new stuff has new ram protocol and I think backwards compatibility will be nill soon.

paulears thats hilarious about your buddy's virus scan philosophy. And I too want to use safari, good to know.

That said, I'm strongly considering not ever connecting the computer to the Internet.

pcrecord

Could I use a seperate drive just for Internet browsing and office work Ect, and another one for audio OS and programs, and a seperate audio drive? Would this allow me to have no virus scan safely? Or at least safely keep it disabled if not?

pcrecord Fri, 01/01/2016 - 19:51
kmetal, post: 434860, member: 37533 wrote: Could I use a seperate drive just for Internet browsing and office work Ect, and another one for audio OS and programs, and a seperate audio drive? Would this allow me to have no virus scan safely? Or at least safely keep it disabled if not?
Of course you can have 2 partitions or 2 drives and install an OS on both.
With 2 hard drives, it's even easier if your bios allows to call a boot menu at start up.. (often F12) And just decide which one to choose.. The only thing to remember is to avoid accessing your OS that access internet from the unprotected one in case it could be infected.
BUT, there is a slight danger with some viruses that affect local files which can affect both hdd. (Crypto locker was one that encrypted all files on all drives..) but it's rare...
A very motivated user could prepare 2 OS drives and only plug one at once, but it's alot of manual work...

Another option is to use a virtual machine to browse online. You install your DAW OS and use vmware player (it's free) to build another OS that will run as a VM on top of it. You can keep a clean snapshot in case you get in trouble. If it's only to surf the web, it could even be a linux OS which is not subject to viruses attack.

If any of this is of interest to you or others, just say so, I'll find some ressources and post them here ;)

kmetal Fri, 01/01/2016 - 20:16
pcrecord, post: 434864, member: 46460 wrote: Of course you can have 2 partitions or 2 drives and install an OS on both.
With 2 hard drives, it's even easier if your bios allows to call a boot menu at start up.. (often F12) And just decide which one to choose.. The only thing to remember is to avoid accessing your OS that access internet from the unprotected one in case it could be infected.
BUT, there is a slight danger with some viruses that affect local files which can affect both hdd. (Crypto locker was one that encrypted all files on all drives..) but it's rare...
A very motivated user could prepare 2 OS drives and only plug one at once, but it's alot of manual work...

Another option is to use a virtual machine to browse online. You install your DAW OS and use vmware player (it's free) to build another OS that will run as a VM on top of it. You can keep a clean snapshot in case you get in trouble. If it's only to surf the web, it could even be a linux OS which is not subject to viruses attack.

If any of this is of interest to you or others, just say so, I'll find some ressources and post them here ;)

I'm very very interested in virtual machines and remote desktops cuz w10 pro can do that, and so can my NAS Drive which functions as a rudimentary computer. I could just use this I guess. Frankly I find VM's quite confusing and remote desktops only slightly less on confusing. My goal is to be able to run my daw from anywhere (while I'm saving for source connect) so I can make mix adjustments from a clients home, or give them access to make adjustments and save to their folder on the NAS, which would have limited acess. But really I'm puzzled as to the true capabilities of VMs and remotes desktops, and want to make sure I have the necessary hardware. I also want to make sure everything has the same capabilities and speaks the same language as much as possible.

Also you answered my question before I could ask about an alternate OS, I was thinking Mac OS, but lunix interests me with its open source format.

So a clean snapshot is clean and reliable? My boss has run into problems w his Mac trying to mirror one drive to another, with lost files and authorizations.
Is a snapshot as reliable as a re-format? I have experienced the tedium more than I care to recall.

I know I'd personally appreciate, whenever you have some soare time, any and all pertinent info and links on the subject, and I think as this sort of thing becomes more commonplace with networked audio and remote collabs, others would to.

The hard part is finding someone so knowledgeable like you in this area, who actually is proficient in recording and it's specialized needs. Nevermind generous with their time.

I think I'm going to sign up for some computer networking/programing and electronics repair classes, at the local junior college in the near future, as I see systems quickly moving from power amps and mixing to more IT and programming based installs and more importantly system tech support. Thanks Marco.

To think this all started w a portastudio to record my punk rock band....

DonnyThompson Sat, 01/02/2016 - 00:20
kmetal, post: 434865, member: 37533 wrote: To think this all started w a portastudio to record my punk rock band....

LOL.. I used a porta studio too, when I was a road musician. I carried it with me to all those cities; I had a nice little case for it that held the recorder, a pair of HP's and an SM57. During the day, when I had nothing to do, I would write and record.
It was a great little tool for that. I still have a box of TDK Metal cassettes somewhere, with all those ideas...I just don't have a porta studio anymore to play them with.

I was recently thinking about how I got to where I am now, trying to recall the timeline; it all starts around 1978 or so, when I bought my first home recording gear: a 1/4" /Four Track / 7.5 ips Dokorder R to R, a little Biamp 8 channel mixer, and a couple nice mics... and thinking at the time that it would be all I would ever need to record at home.

Fast-Forward 5 years to '83/'84 or so, and during that time, after learning the craft even more by working with my private instructor ( a pro engineer who had worked at Caribou Ranch and had moved to my area to work in Product Development at AT), in some regional pro rooms, moving up to a 1/2" 8 track 15ips machine ( Tascam 48), a Yamaha Rev 7 Reverb, and a Tascam 3500 desk, and thinking that this would be all I would ever need...at least up to 1991, when I dropped "real" money on a Tascam MS 1"/16 track Tape Machine, a Neotek Elan desk, and 2 TT patch Bays to connect up all my peripheral gear, which had grown in scope and size to include gear like 1176's, LA2's, dbx 166's, SPX-90's.... and of course, that stuff would be "all I would ever need..."

Learning and working in pro studios during that time, mixing on truly pro gear like Neve, SSL, Trident, MCI, Studer, Teletronix, Urie, Lexicon.... always kept me striving for the best sound I could get at home.

Somewhere in there, I'm not sure when exactly (maybe '92 or so), I found computer technology as a foundation for audio production... which meant that beyond learning how to use the software, I also needed to learn about computers.
( Anyone remember Cakewalk for DOS? Striping a track on a tape with SMPTE? Or those pesky little IRQ issues when installing PCI-slot hardware cards?)

There were times I had my doubts about it, too - like when I would apply EQ to a 2-track file in SoundForge, and a little status window would pop up with the message, "estimated 2 hours to complete" .

Two Hours? "Two hours?!" I could have mixed an entire song in two hours on a Console and Tape Machine...

So why did I continue to use computers as the foundation?

That's not a rhetorical question, either.... LOL.. I'm asking that sincerely, and am happy to be informed by my colleagues as to why I did. ;)

LOL

paulears Sat, 01/02/2016 - 02:04
I think the internet connection just HAS to be part of the deal nowadays as so much software works in the background. I turned on the new build music machine this morning to be told Audition had updated, Soundforge had installed a missing plugin, and there was a nvidia update for the video card if I want it. The 'cloud' now has copies of my vital data, and one sampler just sent me a nice picture that when I dropped it onto my non-functioning sampler control panel authenticated it and it now works.

The trouble is that you need to be aware what you might be doing. Looking for a missing driver I very nearly downloaded some kind of driver installer - no doubt full of adverts and worse. I guess we need to learn how this all works, even when we don't want to.

My wife phoned me up because she could't print - after half an hour I gave up. She said not to worry, she'd just close it up and try later. Close it up? You're on your LAPTOP??? Yes, why? Because that isn't connected to the printer - the printer is in the office connected to that computer! That's stupid she said, they both have Google!

pcrecord Sat, 01/02/2016 - 05:45
kmetal, post: 434865, member: 37533 wrote: My goal is to be able to run my daw from anywhere (while I'm saving for source connect) so I can make mix adjustments from a clients home, or give them access to make adjustments and save to their folder on the NAS, which would have limited acess.
VM:
Now a day, 90% of the servers we prepare and use are VM. (either HyperV or Vmware). Most motherboard offers VM capability and can now share their ressources for multiple OS. It is very convinient because the VM lies in 1 or very few files. It's easy to backup and you can move it to an VM compatible computer even if the hardware isn't the same. For us DAW user, I wouldn't recommand it up front because there is some processing taken by the VM engin and the VM may not have direct access to hardware which can create latency (this is to be tested). But it's a perfect solution for us that wants to keep a clean OS for recording and have a second one to go online(which for me would be the vm)
Remote desktop protocol :
Remote desktop services are great for remote work. Most of the companies I work for ,use a terminal server (who accept multiple users) and it could be accessed from home by the worker. Since the server is on the local network, they can access the same ressources, data, printers etc..
Commonly, RDP is a good choice because only the image, keyboard and mouse activity are transfered on the network connection. So a very old computer can access an up to date server and still get good performances.
Now for mixing, I'm not sure it's the best way to go for mixing because even if the protocol can transport sound, it is not said if the performance will be good. This is something you can try localy in your home and expect average to good results but remotely you'll be victime of internet connection speeds which vary greatly...
I'm also curious as to how good it could work but I know that CAD softwares gave bad results over RDP from a remote location. I fear DAWs would be the same.. But hey !! I could be surprised.. Of course if it's only minor changes, it might be the perfect solution !


DonnyThompson, post: 434867, member: 46114 wrote: Anyone remember Cakewalk for DOS?
Yes I do !!! I had the ver 2.1 then 4 and all subsequent versions.... Well that's an age giveaway ! (y)

paulears, post: 434869, member: 47782 wrote: The 'cloud' now has copies of my vital data
It is very important to do that with a private cloud service. Most free ones (like iCloud) are public and they say in the agreement that they can access your data without asking... Not the place you want private things to go.. ;)

kmetal Sat, 01/02/2016 - 16:08
DonnyThompson, post: 434867, member: 46114 wrote: LOL.. I used a porta studio too, when I was a road musician. I carried it with me to all those cities; I had a nice little case for it that held the recorder, a pair of HP's and an SM57. During the day, when I had nothing to do, I would write and record.
It was a great little tool for that. I still have a box of TDK Metal cassettes somewhere, with all those ideas...I just don't have a porta studio anymore to play them with.

I was recently thinking about how I got to where I am now, trying to recall the timeline; it all starts around 1978 or so, when I bought my first home recording gear: a 1/4" /Four Track / 7.5 ips Dokorder R to R, a little Biamp 8 channel mixer, and a couple nice mics... and thinking at the time that it would be all I would ever need to record at home.

Fast-Forward 5 years to '83/'84 or so, and during that time, after learning the craft even more by working with my private instructor ( a pro engineer who had worked at Caribou Ranch and had moved to my area to work in Product Development at AT), in some regional pro rooms, moving up to a 1/2" 8 track 15ips machine ( Tascam 48), a Yamaha Rev 7 Reverb, and a Tascam 3500 desk, and thinking that this would be all I would ever need...at least up to 1991, when I dropped "real" money on a Tascam MS 1"/16 track Tape Machine, a Neotek Elan desk, and 2 TT patch Bays to connect up all my peripheral gear, which had grown in scope and size to include gear like 1176's, LA2's, dbx 166's, SPX-90's.... and of course, that stuff would be "all I would ever need..."

Learning and working in pro studios during that time, mixing on truly pro gear like Neve, SSL, Trident, MCI, Studer, Teletronix, Urie, Lexicon.... always kept me striving for the best sound I could get at home.

Somewhere in there, I'm not sure when exactly (maybe '92 or so), I found computer technology as a foundation for audio production... which meant that beyond learning how to use the software, I also needed to learn about computers.
( Anyone remember Cakewalk for DOS? Striping a track on a tape with SMPTE? Or those pesky little IRQ issues when installing PCI-slot hardware cards?)

There were times I had my doubts about it, too - like when I would apply EQ to a 2-track file in SoundForge, and a little status window would pop up with the message, "estimated 2 hours to complete" .

Two Hours? "Two hours?!" I could have mixed an entire song in two hours on a Console and Tape Machine...

So why did I continue to use computers as the foundation?

That's not a rhetorical question, either.... LOL.. I'm asking that sincerely, and am happy to be informed by my colleagues as to why I did. ;)

LOL

So jealous of you working on those consoles d.!! I've never even touched a neve or ssl or Harrison. A trident 24 is about as close as I've gotten and that's was short lived, and not even close to the level of the others.

So you skipped the whole dat/adat thing??

'92 is really early on in computers. I was 8 years old and probably was right when I got a 166mhz computer my grandparent got me. AOL was where it's at lmao.

paulears, post: 434869, member: 47782 wrote: I think the internet connection just HAS to be part of the deal nowadays as so much software works in the background. I turned on the new build music machine this morning to be told Audition had updated, Soundforge had installed a missing plugin, and there was a nvidia update for the video card if I want it. The 'cloud' now has copies of my vital data, and one sampler just sent me a nice picture that when I dropped it onto my non-functioning sampler control panel authenticated it and it now works.

The trouble is that you need to be aware what you might be doing. Looking for a missing driver I very nearly downloaded some kind of driver installer - no doubt full of adverts and worse. I guess we need to learn how this all works, even when we don't want to.

My wife phoned me up because she could't print - after half an hour I gave up. She said not to worry, she'd just close it up and try later. Close it up? You're on your LAPTOP??? Yes, why? Because that isn't connected to the printer - the printer is in the office connected to that computer! That's stupid she said, they both have Google!

Paul those kind of 'computer did it while I slept' updates and 'fixes' are exactly what I'm scared of. My NAS drive functions as a rudimentary computer, and I'm wondering if I can use that to download all the updates to first, and scan them then use wifi, or a flash stick to the daw. I will also do what Marco said and have to get another drive for the 'clean daw drive'.

Printers suck.

pcrecord, post: 434871, member: 46460 wrote: VM:
Now a day, 90% of the servers we prepare and use are VM. (either HyperV or Vmware). Most motherboard offers VM capability and can now share their ressources for multiple OS. It is very convinient because the VM lies in 1 or very few files. It's easy to backup and you can move it to an VM compatible computer even if the hardware isn't the same. For us DAW user, I wouldn't recommand it up front because there is some processing taken by the VM engin and the VM may not have direct access to hardware which can create latency (this is to be tested). But it's a perfect solution for us that wants to keep a clean OS for recording and have a second one to go online(which for me would be the vm)
Remote desktop protocol :
Remote desktop services are great for remote work. Most of the companies I work for ,use a terminal server (who accept multiple users) and it could be accessed from home by the worker. Since the server is on the local network, they can access the same ressources, data, printers etc..
Commonly, RDP is a good choice because only the image, keyboard and mouse activity are transfered on the network connection. So a very old computer can access an up to date server and still get good performances.
Now for mixing, I'm not sure it's the best way to go for mixing because even if the protocol can transport sound, it is not said if the performance will be good. This is something you can try localy in your home and expect average to good results but remotely you'll be victime of internet connection speeds which vary greatly...
I'm also curious as to how good it could work but I know that CAD softwares gave bad results over RDP from a remote location. I fear DAWs would be the same.. But hey !! I could be surprised.. Of course if it's only minor changes, it might be the perfect solution !

Excellent Marco. So if I have this right, VM allows me to run my desktop and programs from someone else computer? Kind of like taking my whole software set on the road??

And Remote Desktop allows me to control someone else's computer from mine, and vice versa??

I'm definatly going to try the remote mixing locally, and at my buddies. I have high hopes and low expectations, but my hardware supports both vm and remote desktops. I'm wondering if the NAS will function as a rudimentary server. I know one of its features is web hosting, which you explained to me is better to go w a server farm for reliability. Maybe it's basic capabilities could be worked in to help me do this.

Dante and source connect so this sort of thing specifically but the entry cost is $2500 plus, so I'm interested in how close I can get with what I have, to a pseudo broadcasting remote setup.

From what I've gathered Dante does not support wireless transfers, so I think both computers/devices would have to be connected via LAN at a minimum.

I mean even in its basic level, saving a mix change, and dragging it over to a clients file on Dropbox is the NAS is pretty fast. But I'm am rarely satisfied unless I'm pushing a boundary.

Cakewalk, lmao.

DonnyThompson Sat, 01/02/2016 - 23:34
kmetal, post: 434874, member: 37533 wrote:

So you skipped the whole dat/adat thing??

I wish I had. ;)

I was condensing the story, so I left out that "dark period" of 16 bit /rotary dat.
I did the Tascam DA-88 thing for a few years; IMO, probably the worst investment I ever made. ( I also had a pair of Yamaha O2R digi consoles, of which I still have one of laying around here and taking up space...)

I hated those DA's. The heads needed rebuilding every 600-700 hours (or so) of use, ( 600 hours may seem like a lot, but it really wasn't all that hard to burn through that amount in a commercial setting) and which there very few authorized third-party repair places that offered that service; I sent mine back to Teac to have them do the work, it was something like $six hundred for the repair, plus insured shipping (per deck), and I had 4 of them... actually, the fourth wasn't even used much for actual recording, it was a a DA-38 model that I kept around to use as a spare, when I had to send one of the other 88 decks back for servicing. The whole workflow was a royal PITA.

I never owned any Adats ( worked with them several times), so I don't know if they suffered from similar issues or not.

What I should have done instead, was to buy the Alesis HD recorder (I forget the model, was it the HD24, maybe?)... I had worked with those a few times, and I really liked them. I don't know if it was that it had better converters, or what exactly, but it sounded infinitely better to me than the Tascam tape-based digital decks did.

kmetal Sun, 01/03/2016 - 09:01
DonnyThompson, post: 434876, member: 46114 wrote: I wish I had. ;)

I was condensing the story, so I left out that "dark period" of 16 bit /rotary dat.
I did the Tascam DA-88 thing for a few years; IMO, probably the worst investment I ever made. ( I also had a pair of Yamaha O2R digi consoles, of which I still have one of laying around here and taking up space...)



'Dark period' lol.

Man,$ 600 repair, shipping, and the downtime, those things must have cost you a fortune. What a horrible thing to have to deal with.

Is this when larger (huge) comercial facilities were still using studers? Or was everyone in that same boat.?

It's funny you still see those alesis HD recorders around once in a while.

Guelph_Guy Mon, 01/04/2016 - 08:05
audiokid, post: 434834, member: 1 wrote: rme pcie 32 has been the best interface. It has both midi and madi. I connect older midi keys to a Mark of the Unicorn MTP and that to the rme. Also use usb midi.
I'm running a similar solution ,windows 10 on a core I5 and pcie to a motu PCI 424 and a MTP- AV .. Its been solid but I don't have high track counts ...12-15 tracks. I've done nothing about disabling services and I run no anti-virus on the studio PC's at all ... They are isolated from the network..

I do have a USB wireless adapter, which I use on the systems to connect to my product manufacturers for updates .. That's the only exception

Guelph_Guy Mon, 01/04/2016 - 08:11
DonnyThompson, post: 434867, member: 46114 wrote: LOL.. I used a porta studio too, when I was a road musician. I carried it with me to all those cities; I had a nice little case for it that held the recorder, a pair of HP's and an SM57. During the day, when I had nothing to do, I would write and record.
It was a great little tool for that. I still have a box of TDK Metal cassettes somewhere, with all those ideas...I just don't have a porta studio anymore to play them with.

I was recently thinking about how I got to where I am now, trying to recall the timeline; it all starts around 1978 or so, when I bought my first home recording gear: a 1/4" /Four Track / 7.5 ips Dokorder R to R, a little Biamp 8 channel mixer, and a couple nice mics... and thinking at the time that it would be all I would ever need to record at home.

Fast-Forward 5 years to '83/'84 or so, and during that time, after learning the craft even more by working with my private instructor ( a pro engineer who had worked at Caribou Ranch and had moved to my area to work in Product Development at AT), in some regional pro rooms, moving up to a 1/2" 8 track 15ips machine ( Tascam 48), a Yamaha Rev 7 Reverb, and a Tascam 3500 desk, and thinking that this would be all I would ever need...at least up to 1991, when I dropped "real" money on a Tascam MS 1"/16 track Tape Machine, a Neotek Elan desk, and 2 TT patch Bays to connect up all my peripheral gear, which had grown in scope and size to include gear like 1176's, LA2's, dbx 166's, SPX-90's.... and of course, that stuff would be "all I would ever need..."

Learning and working in pro studios during that time, mixing on truly pro gear like Neve, SSL, Trident, MCI, Studer, Teletronix, Urie, Lexicon.... always kept me striving for the best sound I could get at home.

Somewhere in there, I'm not sure when exactly (maybe '92 or so), I found computer technology as a foundation for audio production... which meant that beyond learning how to use the software, I also needed to learn about computers.
( Anyone remember Cakewalk for DOS? Striping a track on a tape with SMPTE? Or those pesky little IRQ issues when installing PCI-slot hardware cards?)

There were times I had my doubts about it, too - like when I would apply EQ to a 2-track file in SoundForge, and a little status window would pop up with the message, "estimated 2 hours to complete" .

Two Hours? "Two hours?!" I could have mixed an entire song in two hours on a Console and Tape Machine...

So why did I continue to use computers as the foundation?

That's not a rhetorical question, either.... LOL.. I'm asking that sincerely, and am happy to be informed by my colleagues as to why I did. ;)

LOL
. What a rush... this was before midi even came into play !!!
Ha Donny , I'll date myself for you .. my first multi track synthesis system was an alpha syntari... Two edge cars inside an Apple 2!

pcrecord Mon, 01/04/2016 - 09:14
Guelph_Guy, post: 434894, member: 47293 wrote: I'm running a similar solution ,windows 10 on a core I5 and pcie to a motu PCI 424 and a MTP- AV .. Its been solid but I don't have high track counts ...12-15 tracks. I've done nothing about disabling services and I run no anti-virus on the studio PC's at all ... They are isolated from the network..

I do have a USB wireless adapter, which I use on the systems to connect to my product manufacturers for updates .. That's the only exception
by default win 10 install Windows defender, did you deactivate it ?

kmetal Mon, 01/04/2016 - 12:17
Guelph_Guy, post: 434900, member: 47293 wrote: I do have a nit of an advantage, I run a full on computer network in the house ..
2 domain controllers / DNS servers (HP DL145)
2 hp dl380 g5 File servers and print servers
HP AIO 600 SAN

So is this what allows you to keep your daw computers isolated from the network? Is it possible to say connect to another computer or network in your home that has acess to he Internet for updates, scan them, and just acces your closed network?

Basically using your network as a filter/buffer/firewall?

pcrecord Mon, 01/04/2016 - 12:42
Guelph_Guy, post: 434899, member: 47293 wrote: Yes under group policy (gpedit.exe) under templates under machine configuration you can disable windows defender . Otherwise if you just turn it off, the next time you reboot it will be enabled.

Hope this helps...
I just wanted to know if you did it, since you said you ran no antivirus (some don't even know about Windows defender) ;)
As an IT support a business of 400 computers and 2 server farm (well I'm not the sysadmin here but I've been one for other customers)
Good to know you got some computer knowledge Guelph_Guy !

pcrecord Mon, 01/04/2016 - 12:59
kmetal, post: 434903, member: 37533 wrote: So is this what allows you to keep your daw computers isolated from the network? Is it possible to say connect to another computer or network in your home that has acess to he Internet for updates, scan them, and just acces your closed network?
Basically using your network as a filter/buffer/firewall?
Well having servers and computers on a domain doesn't necessary meen you are isolated from the internet or the network. You would need a router or a switch that can use access list or create different vlan. (VLans allows to have computers in different subnets) Then give access to the web only to those you want. Ultimately a computer could access the server for updates but without an access to the web. BUT if it doesn't access the web, why do the updates I'd ask ? Other than if there's a problem to fix... (which could be done once with an active antivirus that you deactivate afterward)

For us at home or small businesses, to be isolated from the network is easy to do; remove the ethernet cable ;)..
My initial tests with win10 are interesting (didn't deactivated Windows defender yet) and some of my projects seems to run smooth so far...

I give you an update and list of changes I made to the OS very soon

Guelph_Guy Mon, 01/04/2016 - 13:58
kmetal, post: 434903, member: 37533 wrote: So is this what allows you to keep your daw computers isolated from the network? Is it possible to say connect to another computer or network in your home that has acess to he Internet for updates, scan them, and just acces your closed network?

Basically using your network as a filter/buffer/firewall?

Guelph_Guy Mon, 01/04/2016 - 14:50
Guelph_Guy, post: 434907, member: 47293 wrote:
Not exactly ,,Yes I do have a router connecting to the internet.. It combines both Ethernet as well as wireless access. And has firewall provisioning with minimal services enabled. The router uses NAT translation. So addresses assigned to your internal network are not visible externally...

What people, fail to understand is that routers/firewalls determine how to deal with internet requests.
As an example, on your internal home network, if the request is an outbound request,, the router will usually pass the traffic unconditionally.
(unless you are blocking outgoing traffic).. However, external traffic to your internal network will be blocked unconditionally, unless you invite it in ..
By setting up rules in the router firewall.

What usually happens is a user will download some malicious virus which will call out to the internet. As the call out is internally generated on your network, the router says all is good as the request is coming from inside... and going outside... Once this occurs your problems are just starting.

We have ALOT of tablets in the house and IPhones, they switch to wireless access when they enter the house for data services.

There are 2 computers in the studio. one has Sonar platinum, the other has music creator pro (used as an idea scratchpad).. they are connected to each other by Ethernet.. and are not directly connected to the internet. The switch they are connected to has Ethernet out to the storage area network (SAN). Several terabytes.
The storage holds samples and some scratchpad templates The san has 2 Ethernet cards that isolate the internet side from the private network side and are on independent networks. The networks are not visible to each other. Data cannot pass across the 2 networks.

SAN storage is also carved up the same way. So when my daughter connects with her laptop wirelessly, she will see SAN storage allocated to her but will not see the Studio storage or computers as they are on a different network.. When I, connect to, storage from the studio , I see studio storage only and not my daughters storage.

So, what about updates ?.. well I use a USB wireless adapter and plug it into a studio computer ,,it will negotiate a wireless connection on the internet side BEFORE the router., So the firewall still works. I'll take updates from Microsoft, NVIDIA, MOTU,Cakewalk, after the updates I remove the USB wireless key and back to normal..

So for example . There are 6x4 terabytes in the array 24 terabytes total - 4 terabytes for a total of 20 TB of usable storage . When the storage gets carved up I can allocate storage to my daughters laptop. When she connects to the network, she has her own storage space and you can scale it as needed..

I've been a network admin for 20+ years.. and teach the Microsoft engineering program when periodically asked.. I have all this gear to keep my skills up...!!!

Wow I hope some it makes sense.....

If you are all dizzy from it .. Sorry !

kmetal Mon, 01/04/2016 - 20:18
pcrecord, post: 434905, member: 46460 wrote: For us at home or small businesses, to be isolated from the network is easy to do; remove the ethernet cable ;)..

I like it. Simple and effective. Looking forward to hearing yor experiences with w10!!

Guelph_Guy, post: 434908, member: 47293 wrote: Not exactly ,,Yes I do have a router connecting to the internet.. It combines both Ethernet as well as wireless access. And has firewall provisioning with minimal services enabled. The router uses NAT translation. So addresses assigned to your internal network are not visible externally...

What people, fail to understand is that routers/firewalls determine how to deal with internet requests.
As an example, on your internal home network, if the request is an outbound request,, the router will usually pass the traffic unconditionally.
(unless you are blocking outgoing traffic).. However, external traffic to your internal network will be blocked unconditionally, unless you invite it in ..
By setting up rules in the router firewall.

What usually happens is a user will download some malicious virus which will call out to the internet. As the call out is internally generated on your network, the router says all is good as the request is coming from inside... and going outside... Once this occurs your problems are just starting.

We have ALOT of tablets in the house and IPhones, they switch to wireless access when they enter the house for data services.

There are 2 computers in the studio. one has Sonar platinum, the other has music creator pro (used as an idea scratchpad).. they are connected to each other by Ethernet.. and are not directly connected to the internet. The switch they are connected to has Ethernet out to the storage area network (SAN). Several terabytes.
The storage holds samples and some scratchpad templates The san has 2 Ethernet cards that isolate the internet side from the private network side and are on independent networks. The networks are not visible to each other. Data cannot pass across the 2 networks.

SAN storage is also carved up the same way. So when my daughter connects with her laptop wirelessly, she will see SAN storage allocated to her but will not see the Studio storage or computers as they are on a different network.. When I, connect to, storage from the studio , I see studio storage only and not my daughters storage.

So, what about updates ?.. well I use a USB wireless adapter and plug it into a studio computer ,,it will negotiate a wireless connection on the internet side BEFORE the router., So the firewall still works. I'll take updates from Microsoft, NVIDIA, MOTU,Cakewalk, after the updates I remove the USB wireless key and back to normal..

So for example . There are 6x4 terabytes in the array 24 terabytes total - 4 terabytes for a total of 20 TB of usable storage . When the storage gets carved up I can allocate storage to my daughters laptop. When she connects to the network, she has her own storage space and you can scale it as needed..

I've been a network admin for 20+ years.. and teach the Microsoft engineering program when periodically asked.. I have all this gear to keep my skills up...!!!

Wow I hope some it makes sense.....

If you are all dizzy from it .. Sorry !

Well yeah a little bit, but I appreciate the detailed answer, it'll keep my wiki busy for a little bit. I like technical explanations, as each tidbit of jargon/concepts, slowly connects dots in my central storage between the ears. Eventually after enough repetition and various wordings/explanations of the same thing, the aha happpens.

The way I read it in simple terms is your using remote/networked storage, and allocating a part of the massive central drive bays, to a seperate network(s). Each of these has limited access to a portion of the overall available space. The amount of which is determined by the admin, you. This amount can be changed as needed.

So, your daughter and the studios computers are both accessing through the same router, but thru individual networks within the home. These individual networks acess their own segment of the storage, and are subject to whatever firewalls/virus scan exists on each computer/tablet within the home.

Is that sort of on the right track? (pun there)

The switers job for the studio is simply to link both computers to the storage so they act as one?

And these form like a 'closed loop' which does not include an Internet connection, but merely shares data between the storage and two studio computers...?

This leaves a fairly typical home internet based setup for the rest of the house, with access to the central storage, plus Internet..?

So your wireless usb stick uses the router as a firewall or 'buffer zone' so your computer isn't unprotected for the brief moments it's connected to the Internet?

Could a similar thing be accomplished for updates, if I used a basic usb stick on another computer connected to the Internet. Where I downloaded the updates, scaned it, then installed on the studio computer (which for a Hypothetical) is never connected to the Internet?
Could the same thing be accomplished on a partition of one of the 2 drives in my NAS (which I haven't unboxed yet, and have no experience with otherwise).
So say I dedicated 50gb of one of the 2 tb drives and called it 'updates'. The NAS functions as a basic computer (with I'm guessing some fort of virus scan/firewall) so I would download the updates to the main drive on that, scan them, then move them to the 'updates' partition. I would have that partition have no communication with the other drives/Internet (if possible) and then use Bluetooth to acess the updates on the studio computer, without it connecting to the Internet?

Sorry for the elaborate scheme. I'm not one of those to ask for advice from more knowledgable , then just do what I want anyway. I'm really trying to figure out how the studio computer NAS and home network play together. And maximize the use of the NAS, which started as just a harddrive, but I slowly bought (modestly) into more features and capability. Kudos to Marco for introducing me to qnap!

It seems like you guys have worked out some really easy and simple ways to keep your computers and software running smooth and up to date, without steady Internet connections and scans bogging it down. In the end I'll probably just copy what you guys do. But I am interested in more elaborate and complex things/methods both for my own appetite for knowledge, and to help me professionally.

Seems so far to me that a system image is essential and a separate drive of some sort for internet based tasks is a very good idea. I start to get foggy with multiple networks and router settings/separations and what roles switchers play. But I think that merits some research and manual reading. Any sort of links or material you guys have would be great. So I don't have to bore you with basic general computing questions.

I really appreciate the time you guys have taken to address this topic. Hopefully many others will find his thread useful as well.

A quick comment on bit defender, cuz Audiokid mentioned he used it. The reviews in PC mag and a couple others online didn't give it very good ratings, so I'm guessing I'll want to disable it, and install something more intensive?

Would there be any advantages of I out Mac OS on a seperate drive/partition to handle my internet based stuff? Would there be any advantage to using my iphone/iPad to access and save the updates to a harddrive?

Also any other sort of hardware that could be useful and/or necessary, I'm all for purchasing. I'm looking to leave everything packaged up and put it all together at once, as all my previous stuff has been piecmeal. I've picked out a new power supply, and the ram I will be putting in (max 32gb on my motherboard, 4gb on the NAS) Lol hopefully the computer is still relevant by the time I turn it on. Once this is working together I will build another more capable PC for heavy mixing and multi tracking. This current setup should keep me busy for a year or two, by the time I aquire all the software (legitimately) and conquer the learning curves. Want to make sure I have thorough understanding, and am making maximum use of the tools. I want redundancy only where I need it, not by accident.

Conceptualizing how it will all work together is a good and fun (if u can belive it) excersise for me, and certainly a big learning experience.

Lol the funny thing about audio engineering is you end up a marketing guru, gear tech, accountant, and construction expert by the time your done.

Thanks again fellas for your generosity, you've made my night!!!!

Guelph_Guy Mon, 01/04/2016 - 20:39
Well, my complexity is primarily to experiment, yes removing the Ethernet cable would be just as effective loll...

On another note, my windows server has a Microsoft update server service .. It connects to MSFT and downloads the patch manifest for the operating systems you have in your network (well Microsoft systems).. this allows operating system patch management locally and not connecting each of your computers to MS to get the downloads. Basically one download with internal distribution automatically. The service allows the admin to dictate which patches get deployed and deploys them in the wee hours of the AM as long as the workstation or laptop is turned on .. There are 7workstations in my network 4 laptops and some windows surface devices. And 8 virtual servers. Some of these are set up for development (web/ programming, data services,). You can also set the system up so it will only download patches for say windows 10 only.. I'm fully deployed on windows 10 across the network... and yes windows 10 has been a good deployment for me..

Anyhow, there are a number of ways to protect your network ... I do recall somebody being at the house and asking me how to protect themselves from internet viri a...I handed him a set of scissors ....lol

Cheers
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