Firebox / Cubase "skipping" problem...

Discussion in 'Mixing & Song Critique' started by xian, Apr 26, 2006.

  1. xian

    xian Guest

    I have a friend who just bought a new laptop/firebox/cubase sx for a small 'on-the-road' project studio for personal use. He works away and through telephone conversations explained a problem he's been having.

    He says that when he records there will be small chunks of the audio missing, like the recording "skipped" He said there is no defining pop or click just the few miliseconds of audio missing at very random intervals; anywhere from 3 per second to one every 10 seconds. I originally thought it was jitter but I made sure the sample rates were the same and it still happens.

    The only thing I can think of now is that perhaps his hard drive is too slow or something. He bought a brand new 3.4 GHz HP Laptop with 1 GB RAM which I believe has a 200 GB 7200 RPM HD (I could be mistaken on the RPM however).

    Does this sound like it could be a harware problem? Has anyone experienced this before. Any help would be appreciated.

    Thanks guys!
  2. Could be caused by many things
    Did he turn off background programs like antivirus etc.
    Did he optimize XP for audio, such as setting the processor scehudling in control panel for background services instead of programs
    Is he using the correct driver (cubase runs like molasses on anything except the latest ASIO driver), maybe an updated driver is available.

    Most laptops don't come with 7200 rpm drives some can be customized for this - my Dell 3.2 Ghz p4 laptop w/1 GB DDR dual channel 400 Mhz has a 7200 drive and I use cubase sx3 and have recorded 30+ tracks with some plug-ins at 24/44.1 (I use an Echo Indigo I/O PCMCIA card btw) a 4200 rpm drive is abysmal, a 5400 only moderately better.
    This site has some useful tweaks for optimizing XP for audio/midi recording.
  3. One other thing - if he has the latency settings set too low (lower is better but if you overcrank it by reducing the number of samples to say 128 or lower) you can get crackling and system problems if your card/hardware config can't handle it. try raising the latency a little to see if that helps.
  4. xian

    xian Guest

    I know the latency settings are all the way up so that shouldn't be it. You did raise two points I'll pass on to him though, prcessor scheduling and HD speed. I thought about the HD speed but he's got a 3.4 GHz HP with a 200gb HD and I kinda though that they would put a 7200 RPM drive in there; it wouldn't make much sense to put anything slowing into a computer like that, but I guess I've seen stupider things done.

    I'll tell him about the processor scheduling, hopefully that helps.

    Thanks! :)

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