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  1. Many thanks to everyone for their responses. Sadly, the motherboard died on the Dell Precision 7920 desktop shortly after Craig's post, so I have not been able to explore further. As the 7920 was a freeby from a dissolving research group and was underwhelming in its performance, I've decided not to get it fixed but will instead invest in a new desktop and canibalise the 7920 for parts. The new desktop will definitely *not* be a Dell as they seem to have quite a few foibles around the RealTek audio that interfere with ASIO audio interfaces.
  2. @scook - I don't have "Dell SupportAssist Remediation” running (or any other Dell stuff for that matter). Also, I've downloaded and run LatencyMon and it seems to think the PC spec is good for running real-time audio without dropouts. Which it does, to be fair - like I said, I'm just comparing two PCs with different specs and not seeing an improvement of functions like freezing a track in the more powerful one. Related to all this is I bought Arturia's Buchla Easel software - this runs fine on the low spec laptop but goes crazy on the dual-processor desktop with audio-dropouts etc. No other synth plugin does this and I'm talking to Arturia to see if this is a dual-processor thing. But to be fair, without someone very knowledgeable coming and looking at my PC, it's difficult to see how anyone is going to be able to help me with this all. I was just hoping there were some Cakewalk settings that could make it utilise the power of this desktop.
  3. Many thanks for the replies, all much appreciated. @Pragi @John Nelson Thanks for your responses - the Precision 7920 has got two of these processors in it and although they are at 2.2GHz they "turbo" up to 3.0GHz as required (I don't fully understand Dell's Turbo Boost thing). Furthermore, each processor has 10 cores each. So, I think the desktop probably does have more than enough power required by the minimum Cakewalk spec. But what I'm talking about here is the comparison between a modest spec laptop (one circa 1.80GHz processor, 16 GB RAM, STATA drive) and a super-powerful desktop (two 2.20GHz processors with 10 cores each that can turbo up to 3.0GHz each, 96 GB RAM, running everything of SDD). I'd just expect to see the desktop be able to freeze a track faster than the laptop. But it doesn't, they take about the same time. So, I don't think Cakewalk is taking advantage of the resources in the desktop and I don't know how to fix that. Unfortunately, I don't know much about PC config - I expect someone with better knowledge would be able to tune this desktop so it ran faster. @scook - thanks for the pointer to the thread on "Dell SupportAssist Remediation”, I will check that out.
  4. Hi @scook - many thanks for that, I will look into this. However, what happens for me is that Cakewalk just hangs, it doesn't crash and display a crash notification. It hangs, saying "busy" but never comes back, so I have to kill it in task manager.
  5. Many thanks @Jacques Boileau and @msmcleod for responding to me - in answer to your questions: Laptop: cakewalk and all the VST plugins are running from an SSD, the project running from a standard SATA drive Desktop: everything (cakewalk, VST plugins, project) running from an SSD @msmcleod - "1.8Ghz / 2.2Ghz isn't particularly fast." - yes, that's the laptop spec, with a single processor. The desktop spec is two Intel Xeon Silver 4114 CPU @ 2.20GHz processors, so considerably more than the laptop, which is why I would expect to see things like freezing and track and mixing down to be faster. But it's not. I'm guessing your old i7-3770 is overclocking in order to run at 3.4Ghz? I guess I could overclock the Intel Xeon Silver 4114 CPUs (although I'd need to read up on that). Do you think the limiting step is the CPU speed then? I've also got the NVIDIA Quadro P620 graphics card, which I don't know that much about but it is set to help with computations as well as displaying graphics. Just had Cakewalk crash again, although using a ten-year old plugin - the old plugins I use may be a factor in the stability I guess. Many thanks, Mike
  6. UPDATE TO THIS TICKET: The motherboard died on the Dell Precision 7920 shortly after the last post on this thread. So, I never go to the bottom of this issue. Many thanks to everyone who did respond. Hi, I'm struggling to get Cakewalk performing reasonably on a high-spec machine and would appreciate any pointers from anyone else who has had similar trouble. In particular, I'm looking for settings in Cakewalk that can help performance (I'm already using the "Use multiprocessing engine" and "Plug-in Load Balancing" options on the desktop - see below). So, I have Cakewalk installed on two machines: 1. My laptop (which I take out for recording): A Dell Inspiron-15-5570 with a single Intel i7-8550U CPU @ 1.80GHz and 16 GB RAM 2. My desktop (which I use for mixing): This is a beast of a machine - A Dell Precision 7920 desktop with two Intel Xeon Silver 4114 CPU @ 2.20GHz 2.19 GHz processors, a total of 96 GB of RAM, and an NVIDIA Quadro P620 graphics card. As mentioned above, I'm already using the "Use multiprocessing engine" and "Plug-in Load Balancing" options on this machine. For both, I am using a Steinberg UR22C over USB 3.1 On the basis of the above specs, I would expect the desktop to be: quicker when doing tasks such as freezing tracks and exporting mixed projects more stable, particularly on projects with a lot of plugins However, I am finding them to be much the same in terms of performance. So, for example: Freezing a track takes roughly the same time on each machine Extracting a final mix to a WAV file takes roughly the same time on each machine I simply take it for granted now that Cakewalk will crash at some point during a session and both seem to crash - to be fair, the desktop does seem to be a little more stable than the laptop, especially with plugins So, are there any settings in Cakewalk that I am not taking advantage of to help the desktop speed things up or to make the system more stable? Many thanks Mike
  7. FIXED: The issue was caused by me using the Zoom R24 as an audio interface. I bought a Steinberg UR22C and the problem described in my original post went away. Zoom last released a driver for the R24 in about 2016, so I guess subsequent Windows updates have broken it - it seems for older plugins (the Sonitus ones and Session Drummer 3 seem to be the problem issues for me). Zoom have been completely unresponsive - a real shame because the R24 (and the H4n that I also have) have been rock-solid until this recent issue.
  8. Dear Scook - many thanks for the suggestion. Yes, I've got that option ticked, so regrettably that is not the root of the problem. I'm now fairly sure the problem is the Zoom R24 and its old divers. I've had no response from Zoom regarding updating their drivers, which is annoying, particularly as they continue to sell the device and the drivers are 6 years old. It is a great bit of kit and mine has worked reliably as an audio-interface for the best part of ten years now, not to mention a portable easy recorder for scratch recordings of full band setups. But Windows, Cakewalk, and hardware has all moved on and it is impossible to say where the fault lies. I have a work-around and am living with it. Eventually, I will need to buy a new audio-interface. It is the case that Cakewalk by Bandlab is a) completely free to use and b) does seem to be more functionally rich than every other DAW I have been trying recently (and that includes all the big name's demo software). So, I'm not going to complain here: it's fantastic what Bandlab are making available here and big thanks to them for that - I have a work around and I can continue to make my amateur-level hobby music to my heart's content.
  9. Hi Aleo - thanks for your comments and sympathy. Yes, it sounds quite similar. The problem for me is that I cannot really identify where the fault lies - it could simply be the old Zoom drivers for the R24, which are now about six years old. Zoom are completely unresponsive to any queries about drivers. That is a shame because I've always found their kit to be pretty good. So, I have largely given up on this thread - I cannot see there will be any solution to my specific problem but for now I have a work-around that keep me playing. I find the rest of Cakewalk to be pretty amazing, considering it is free - I've spent some time trying out other DAWs and found them all a little lacking in comparison.
  10. Thanks for the suggestion JoseC, much appreciated. However, this issue is a very specific one for FL Studio and its pre-installed ASIO drivers interfering with the Zoom R24 drivers. Cakewalk does not come with pre-installed ASIO drivers.
  11. Hi @msmcleod No luck I'm afraid - I've tried all four options of this setting and it makes no difference. What is interesting is that if I go into the Preferences section and make any change and hit apply, the file will play normally. So, to recap: 1) The first file usually plays fine. So, the Zoom audio interface is working fine with Cakewalk at this point. 2) I close this and open and close the second/third/fourth/nth file and at some point, one will open and when I try to play it, the first couple of notes of midi will play and then the midi instruments fall silent, the now marker doesn't move, but the audio plays fine. So, the audio bit is still working but something is preventing the midi from playing 3) If I go into the Preferences section and make a change, such amend the ThreadSchedulingModel as discussed above or deselecting one of the Zoom audio interface channels and hit "Apply", the file will then play normally - playing the midi synths, the audio files, and the Now Marker moving. It's as if it resets the audio interface. I'm not having any problems with the Zoom audio interface working with playing other applications on the PC, although they're not really fair comparisons. It is only the midi sounds and the Now Marker not moving that are the issue. It would be useful to know (at a high level) how the midi implementation works in Cakewalk - at what point does the midi engine in Cakewalk controlling plugin synths interact with the audio interface? Surely, that must all be internal to Cakewalk - the midi says play something, the soft-synth generates the waveform and only then does it send stuff to the audio interface? And there must be some sort of protocol between Cakewalk and the interface, so Cakewalk issues a "release resources" (or something) statement and the Zoom interface is meant to implement that properly. The driver for the Zoom Audio interface is at the bottom of this page here: https://www.zoom.co.jp/products/multi-track-recorder/r24-recorder-interface-controller-sampler#downloads Do the Cakewalk developers have any way of issuing commands to the driver to test whether it is behaving properly? I've no idea how to do this or understand the results. It's only really by understanding this that I can go back to Zook and ask them to fix what is wrong - that is, assuming the Zoom interface is wrong and it's not an incorrect implementation in Cakewalk. Or indeed something completely different on my PC that is getting in the way - no idea how I could trace that! Anyway, many thanks for your help and suggestions so far, much appreciated. Mike
  12. Hi @msmcleod - many thanks for the response and apologies in my delay responding, the day-job has been getting in the way. My ThreadSchedulingModel is set to 1 (Legacy Wait-for-single-object). I'll try playing with different settings on this and see if it makes a difference :-) Many thanks, Mike
  13. Okay, apologies for the delay in responding but a quick update: I've tried a few things out as follows: Cakewalk Sonar X2 on the setup above (Zoom R24 audio interface) - same problem Cakewalk Sonar X2 and an older version of Cakewalk Bandlab on a different laptop, same Windows OS version plus Zoom R24 - same problem Current version of Bandlab on current rig using internal RealTek ASIO drivers not the Zoom - doesn't have the problem above but is not usable because of other problems (audio dropouts) I do have a work-around in that if I get the issue, I go into the project settings, de-select one of the Zoom's 8 input channels and hit apply. This seems to reset everything and allows me to then work on the project. I'm yet to try: Cakewalk Sonar X2 and older version of Cakewalk Bandlab on my old desktop with the Zoom - this has an earlier version of Windows 10 and I do not ever recall having this problem with that machine Another DAW such as Cubase with my current rig (Zoom plus laptop) - very hard to make comparisons. But I need something that's stable. While the above points to some issue between the Zoom R24 drivers, the current release of Windows 10, and Bandlab Cakewalk, it is hard to see why. The problem is arising with Midi-driven soft-synths internal to Cakewalk. So, before any of this hits the audio interface, Cakewalk must run the synth, convert it to an audio output, and then channel it to the audio driver along with the audio channels. *And* to cap it all, it all works fine (usually) for the first project I open - it's only the second or subsequent projects that have the problem. It seems like when I close a project, Cakewalk issues a call to the driver to release resources and for whatever reason, that does not happen properly. When I open the next project, the audio plays fine but the midi channels start and then immediately stop and the now-marker doesn't move. Also, how am I going to get anyone to take responsibility for this? The Bandlab developers will say it's a Zoom driver issue, Zoom will say the driver works fine and it's an issue with who Bandlab interact with it - it is a midi issue after all. Anyway, stumped for the moment and will post further updates but do at least have a work-around to get me through the current project. Mike
  14. Dear Robert, Many thanks for your reply, much appreciated. Since posting the response below, I've started going through my entire rig eliminating things one by one. I expect you are correct and it is something to do with the drivers. I'll post back if I find out what it is. My original post was: Regarding your first point, the now marker not moving is just one of the symptoms that manifests itself. I'm aware of the Scroll Lock toggle and that was the first thing I tried. To be absolutely clear, this is what I am seeing happening: 1) I open a project that contains a mixture or midi (to Session Drummer 3) and audio (a small number of guitar and bass tracks). I hit play, the now marker moves, the midi and audio play and I am able to work on the file. I then close the file but keep Cakewalk open. 2) I open, work on, and then close a number of other projects as per point 1). All are fine and I'm continuing to keep the one instance of Cakewalk running, only ever one project open at a time. 3) However, eventually, I open a project and the problem manifests itself. It may be the second, third, fourth, or whatever project I open (although it usually seems to be the third or fourth). The problem is that the first two beats or so of midi play and then the midi engine stops. The Now marker does not move (I have not pressed Scroll Lock in between projects and in any case, pressing Scroll Lock has no effect on the Now marker not moving). The audio continues to play, even though the Now marker is not moving and the midi instruments are not playing. On rare occasions, I get this situation with the first project I open. Once I have reached stage 3), the only thing I can do is to re-start Cakewalk. This generally resets me to point 1) above but on rare occasions I might get one of the following: a) It doesn't clear the problem and I have to restart Cakewalk again before it will load and play a project b) Cakewalk doesn't seem to shut down properly and remains visible in Task Manager, impervious to any attempts to End Task. I then need to reboot my PC to get back to working condition. I've tried your suggestion of clearing the Picture Cache, sadly with no benefit (the second project I opened this morning went to stage 3) above). Regarding your second point, you're talking about the drivers not releasing after shutting down Cakewalk. So, I don't think this relates to the issue I'm having opening a project, closing it, then opening a second project and having the issue outlined above. However, it could perhaps relate to why sometimes after closing Cakewalk, I get conditions a) or b) outlined above - although it is not the ASIO drivers for the Keystation-Pro and Zoom R24 I am seeing stuck in Task Manager but Cakewalk. In fact, I cannot see the drivers for Keystation-Pro and Zoom R24 in Task Manager and I'm not sure I would expect to. The options you've kindly suggested in your point 2 don't really move me forwards - on the whole, I can reset the problem by restarting Cakewalk, which is less onerous than doing the things you've suggested each time. It is a pain to have to close down Cakewalk each time I want to work on a new project (I'm working on a suite of fourteen songs at the moment). It does feel to me like this is some sort of issue with memory not being released. I had problems mixing a previous batch of audio-only tracks earlier in the year, where the first project worked fine but then I started getting weirdness as I closed and opened new projects, eventually needing to restart Cakewalk. Anyway, I appreciate this sort of problem is almost impossible for you to diagnose remotely, there are just too many variables and it's impossible for you to recreate the issue yourself. I will try longer pauses between closing and opening projects or perhaps just restarting Cakewalk each time I want to work on the next project. Many thanks for your help. All the best, Mike T P.S. Cakewalk just hung on me (after a load of unsaved edits, of course). The screenshot shows the Cakewalk Application frozen in task manager. End Task has no effect on it, it just sits there and remains until I re-boot the machine. This is a rare to infrequent occurrence for me - froze in the middle of doing some edits and did not come back. I don't think this is related to the issue discussed above.
  15. Great - many thanks. I will email them this one and the other thread I have at the moment about freezing tracks not working properly. All the best, Mike
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