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Sven

What kind of performance improvement to expect with new i7 Gen 11 CPU

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I've written several times here how impressed I've been with Bandlab's performance with my humble I5 CPU 3.20GHz with 12 gigs of RAM under Windows 7.   

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I load Soft Synth after Soft Synth until there might be 15-20 of them and Bandlab keeps chugging along peacefully.   At some point I always need to freeze some or all of the Soft Synths and even the analog tracks to get through the song.   As many people must know freezing tracks is a very convenient time to take a sip of beer and check your email so there's really no down side to doing it.   Eventually, I may have 70 plus tracks with tons of external effects running yet Bandlab still keeps ticking...

I can only add 4 more gigs of RAM to my CPU with my current system.   A much more expensive option would be to get a new motherboard with a i7 Gen 11 chip and 16 gigazoids of RAM.  My question is do you think that will give me a night and day performance boost and I will no longer need to obsess with freezing tracks in the future?   With the new motherboard I also can expand the RAM to 128 in the future I believe.   BTW, Does Bandlab care more about RAM space or CPU performance.  Probably both.  The new system can only run Windows 10 but I can live with that even though most of my PC's still run Win 7 because they're very nostalgic. 

Thanks for any thoughts on this.

 

 

 

 

 

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For plugins, CPU performance is most important.

For projects with lots of sample libraries, RAM is important.

So ideally you want both.

As for a performance improvement, I've used to have an i5 3570 processor which I upgraded to an i7 3770, which is comparable to your setup given it's a 3rd gen CPU.  Both are running at 3.4Ghz.  I saw maybe a 20% - 30% improvement going from the i5 to the i7 - not huge, but then the speed is the same, and although the i7 is hyperthreaded, there's still only 4 cores.

My 6th gen i7 laptop @ 2.6Ghz matches the performance of my 3rd gen 3.5Ghz i7 3770.

My i7 - 9750H @2.6Hgz laptop is significantly faster than the other machines ( at least twice as fast ),  so a ~4GHz 11th gen i7 should be even faster. 

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Thanks msmcleod,

    I'm attaching the specs for the CPU.   This has 8 cores.  I believe this CPU will make a significant different on my machine.  The additional memory should help with my vst memory management and I will probably start with 16 gigs and add more later as needed.

  Before I do this are there any other factors I should consider that might create a performance bottleneck?  Should I be requested any particular type of memory chips or anything else?   I don't upgrade my music PC often.

Thanks!

Intel® Core™ i7-11700KF Processor.pdf

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2 hours ago, Kurre said:

Don't forget SSD.

Yes, this can make a huge difference to sample load time, and general performance.

On my system Omnisphere went from 45 seconds with a HDD to < 2 seconds on a SSD when loading some presets.

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Thanks for your help. 

I plan to have an 1 tera SSD C drive for the OS and installed vsts.  That's what I have on my current WIn 7 machine with the i5 CPU.

I originally thought I was just going to upgrade my current music PC but I realize that switching from Win 7 to Win 10 is going to take some time.  Maybe weeks.  I have dozens of apps installed and there's a thousand things that can go wrong organizing things so that my old Bandlab projects load correctly.   I just went through this nightmare switching to two version of Kontak and getting everything to work correctly.

For various reasons my dll's are in too many folders and I plan to straighten out that mess with the new PC.  If I buy a new one and carefully install things the way they should be I'm hoping to keep using my Win 7 machine for my own music production during the transition.   In other words, the new machine should be faster but also it gives me a chance to organize things professionally.  I hate what I see with a C:\*.dll folder search!

I'll probably be creating another thread about people's thoughts on how things should be organized in Bandlab.  I hate having dll's scattered about in too many folders even though I can get them to load in Bandlab correctly.  It all looks fine on the surface when you're recording but I know it's not setup the way it should be professionally.

Right now I want to focus on what hardware I should get.   Please let me know if I should specify any RAM specs or anything else to help performance.  I started programming in 1971, worked with DOS 1.0 up to Win 10 and everything in between but I'm too old to be hip  as to what's required these days.  I just want to tune up my guitar and have fun.  I love Bandlab even though none of my other musical friends use it.   I can generally work quickly and that's what I like.  

Thanks again.

-Rick

 

 

 

 

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I going to order my new custom computer soon and below are the proposed specs.   The 1 TB SSD drive will have Windows 10, program installations,  vst snd dll files,  and probably Kontakt library installations.  The 4 TB non-SSD drive will have Bandlab projects, mixes, and anything else that doesn't require the faster SSD speed.  I could have a SSD 4 TB installed but I believe it's about 4 times more expensive.   I recall once testing loading time for a large Bandlab project using a SSD drive and a non-SSD drive and I don't think there was a big time difference.

Again, I'm not a hardware whiz anymore so I would appreciate any thoughts on what I've listed below.  It's very easy for me to change anything at this point if it will help improve Bandlab's performance.  This machine will only be used for Bandlab.

_________________________________________________________________________________

CPU COOLER TSUNAMI TSS-9100 RGB (BLACK)            

SSD M.2 PCIe 1.TB (5Y) WD Blue SN550 (WDS100T2B0C)                      

PSU (80+ Bronze) 650w. Antec ATOM B650                                         

RAM DDR4(2666) 32GB (16GBX2) KINGSTON HYPER-X FURY(HX426C16FB4K2/32)           

MAINBOARD (1200) GIGABYTE B460M DS3H V2 (REV.1.0)                                                   

CPU CORE I7-11700K (Original) No Fan                                                                                     

SATA-III (3Y) 4.TB WD Blue (256MB.,5400RPM,WD40EZAZ)         

___________________________________________________________________________________

Thanks                                              

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Hi

Firstly, do not use a 5400rpm HD for your second drive. You must use a 7200rpm drive if you are to stick with a HDD. The 5400rpm will really slow you down. You must put the content (not the programs) for Kontakt on this drive.

If you have both program and content on your C drive this will just slow things down overall. In fact any Vst program that has content other than the program itself must have that content put on a seperate drive. Your system will run better for it.

I have a 3 drive system (all Crucial/Samsung SSD x 1TB), C - Programs, D - Content, E - further Content and backups. The speed is blistering and I have security against failure.

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Hi TracingArcs,

Thanks for your reply.  I actually prefer to only have programs on the C:\ drive and everything else on my D:\ and E:\ drives.  I thought Kontakt might run faster by accessing the C:\ SSD drive instead of slower D:\ drive.   This is easy to fix, thanks.

I'll also request a 7200rpm drive.  

 

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Question. Why the huge C drive?  My studio machine has 2 x 240GB SSD drives and 2 other 7200 drives that I think are 1TB each. 
My C drive is at 60% and I have a lot of software installed. A lot.  I don’t store any data but some VST’s have snuck in there but they are working so I haven’t moved them. 


If anything I would upgrade my Second SSD drive to a 500 GB so I could put samples on it. But I never have issues with samples being on the 7200 spinners as those get loaded into RAM 

Other things I find important when building for a studio is quite fans including a good quality power supply. Some power supplies don’t have extra cables needed for those extra drives. 
And accessible USB ports. Buss powered interfaces like my Motu M4 require a dedicated USB 3 port. I had to buy a PCIe card. 
 

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Heres the thing with Windows computers I don't understand. 

I have an intel i7-6th Gen Cpu. Just added another 8GB of Ram a week ago, so I sit with 24GB of Ram (need one more 8gb to make that 32gb official.) 

A fellow producer has an i5 - 9th gen cpu and 32gb ram and performs better than my system. 

Edited by Will_Kaydo

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Will - it also depends on the system architecture - not just CPU. more processors mean more contention over limited resources such as memory access or IO paths. for example, a "residential" PC will likely only have a single CPU and single or perhaps dual memory bus pathway. a commercial server with 4 physical CPU will likely have multiple NUMA channels to alleviate contention on the memory bus. so even with less cores and slower speed, the commercial unit may very well perform better because it has multiple paths for all of its cores to access memory and IO than a plain old home PC has (which generally includes gaming and DAW workstations).

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TracingArcs,

  I understand what you mean about having content stored on a different drive than the program but doesn't the vst try to load everything into RAM if possible?  If you have 32GB of RAM and the vst's content can be  loaded there wouldn't that be the fastest way to work?  Is the vst really doing read/writes to the content drive all the time?  I don't know how these things are programmed but I would guess most programmers would want their content in RAM for maximum performance.  If that were true then having the content on the SSD drive which loads quickly into RAM would seem to make more sense.  I plead ignorance and I'm sure your right but I'm just curious how vst's do memory management these days.   Again, it's no problem for me to load content on the D:\ or E:\ drive and the programs on the C:\ drive if that's what you advice.

Thanks.

 

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I've finally got the new Win 10 machine set up and now I'm finally going to switch the D:\ and E:\ drive partitions to a new 4 terabyte SSD.    A few questions:

1) I would normally partition the new drive as a D:\ drive (VST plugins) as 3 terabytes and an E:\ drive (Cakewalk project folders) being 1 terabyte.  The old drive will become the F:\ drive for odds and ends.   The actual Cakewalk installation is on  a 1 TERA SSD  drive.  Does this configuration sound okay for best performance/speed?   I use lots of Soft Synth Plugins and constantly have to Freeze or Archive tracks to keep the old machine from gasping.

2) I could get a SSD 2.5 SATA 4.TB (3Y) Samsung or a 4 TM SSDR M.2 PCIE 4.0 CORSAIR MP600 CORE for a bit more money.  The guy at the store said the M.2 might be 5 times faster according to the specs.  Anyone know if this is true and think I should spend more and get the M.2 drive?  I don't know this stuff anymore but I haven't been fitted for a walker yet so I'm ahead of the game for now.    Any suggestions on what would be best for the new drive are appreciated.   There are other choices I'm sure.  I hope to rely on this new drive for several years and will spend more now if it's worth it.

3) The new machine currently has 32 GB RAM.  I'm honestly a little disappointed at the speed of the new beast with the faster CPU compared to the old Win 7 machine but I'm hoping performance will improve a lot with the new SSD drive.  Would increasing the RAM to 64 GB or more also help a lot?  I'm not sure where the bottlenecks are with Cakewalk and the VST plugins performance.  

Thanks.

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On 2/19/2022 at 7:09 AM, Sven said:

1) I would normally partition the new drive as a D:\ drive (VST plugins) as 3 terabytes and an E:\ drive (Cakewalk project folders) being 1 terabyte.  The old drive will become the F:\ drive for odds and ends.   The actual Cakewalk installation is on  a 1 TERA SSD  drive.  Does this configuration sound okay for best performance/speed?   I use lots of Soft Synth Plugins and constantly have to Freeze or Archive tracks to keep the old machine from gasping.

Partitioning is done mostly to accommodate backup strategies. 

From a performance perspective, partitioning is not a substitute for multiple drives.

On 2/19/2022 at 7:09 AM, Sven said:

2) I could get a SSD 2.5 SATA 4.TB (3Y) Samsung or a 4 TM SSDR M.2 PCIE 4.0 CORSAIR MP600 CORE for a bit more money.  The guy at the store said the M.2 might be 5 times faster according to the specs.  Anyone know if this is true and think I should spend more and get the M.2 drive?  I don't know this stuff anymore but I haven't been fitted for a walker yet so I'm ahead of the game for now.    Any suggestions on what would be best for the new drive are appreciated.   There are other choices I'm sure.  I hope to rely on this new drive for several years and will spend more now if it's worth it.

The best case for M.2 drives is large streaming sample libraries.

If the samplers are not streaming, the only benefit is faster load time. Once the libraries are in memory, the drive makes no difference.

On 2/19/2022 at 7:09 AM, Sven said:

3) The new machine currently has 32 GB RAM.  I'm honestly a little disappointed at the speed of the new beast with the faster CPU compared to the old Win 7 machine but I'm hoping performance will improve a lot with the new SSD drive.  Would increasing the RAM to 64 GB or more also help a lot?  I'm not sure where the bottlenecks are with Cakewalk and the VST plugins performance.  

The only time more RAM is important is if the DAW runs out of RAM. 

 

Overall, the decision to upgrade CPUs, drives or RAM and the impact on performance depends on which resources are being taxed on the current system. What needs to be improved should not be a mystery. Windows provides the tools necessary to monitor CPU, disk and RAM performance.

If the current system is

  • CPU bound a new CPU may help. It really depends on what the CPU is doing. If all the cores a loaded, more cores may be the answer. If one core is pegged, this may indicate a faster clock speed
  • disk bound, more and faster disks may help. I have not partitioned a disk since XP. Instead, favoring more physical disks. My current DAW has 6 internal disks with the DAW and plug-ins installed on the system drive, projects on another and the rest contain samples (and the picture cache). Not using streaming samples, I have not bothered with M.2 drives.
  • RAM bound then add RAM. Performance plummets when the OS uses virtual memory

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Hello scook,

  Thanks for your helpful reply.  Apparently my new motherboard only has one more slot available so I believe my best option is to remove the old non-SSD drive and put in two new SSD drives.  If M.2 is not an advantage that will save some money. 

  I'll put in a 4 TB for vst plugins (which constantly expand) and a 2 TB  or 3 TB drive for my Cakewalk project folders.   That should provide the best performance because the Cakewalk program, installed vst's, and Cakewalk project folders will all be on 3 new physical SSD drives.    Does this make sense?

  Expanding the RAM is easy and I can do that later.   I just want to make sure I get the hard drive part right.

  The CPU is the fastest I could find these days.

Thanks.

 

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I'm currently running on an 11th Gen I7 with 16gb ram and 512gb ssd. I'm coming from a 10 year old 2nd Gen I7 with 8gb ram and hhd. I can tell you the difference is night and day. I can have a huge project going in cakewalk, update windows, play on the internet, stream video etc all at the same time and you wouldn't even know the computer is working. 

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