CPU speeds?

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bidule
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CPU speeds?

Post by bidule » Thu Dec 03, 2009 4:15 pm

hey all.

i've become interested in a laptop which is in my price range, and fits all the specs I want, besides the CPU specs.

I'm interested to know, how vital is it to have a core 2 duo CPU that has speeds over 2ghz.

the laptop i'm looking at has specs such as:

# 1.3GHz Intel SU7300 Core 2 Duo Processor
# 4GB of DDR3 RAM
# 320GB 7200rpm HDD


would this be good enough to do some music stuff in REAPER and Audiomulch? They both don't seem to be that resource intensive. Plus, I also use my own custom rolled version of XP that's incredibly small and light.


opinions?

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Snarl 12/8
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Post by Snarl 12/8 » Thu Dec 03, 2009 5:11 pm

If the software you're using isn't designed for multi-proc (most isn't) then raw cpu speed is more important than number of cores. I've been favoring fast P4's over slow dual cores for cpu intensive media applications.
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thegeek
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Post by thegeek » Thu Dec 03, 2009 5:34 pm

what he said... double check the specs of your software.

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dcsimon
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Post by dcsimon » Thu Dec 03, 2009 6:46 pm

Snarl 12/8 wrote:If the software you're using isn't designed for multi-proc (most isn't) then raw cpu speed is more important than number of cores. I've been favoring fast P4's over slow dual cores for cpu intensive media applications.
This is most definitely true when considering the increase in performance for what I call "super multicore" procs (such as quad and eight core systems) however, I think that there is a HUGE difference in performance when it comes to the difference between a single core and dual core. It is a well known fact that multiple cores handle multi tasking much better. Since there is virtually no practical operating system in existence that run one and ONLY one program/process/thread. Therefore the benefit of a second core is significantly greater despite the inherently lower clock speed of each individual core. So my point is that even though (Insert your favourite app name here) isn't multi threaded, in the big picture. you are still running multiple thread/programs whether you like it or not because you have to run an OS and your app at the same time.

Just some food for thought, in the end I would say that a 1.6 GHz Dual core will outperform a 1.6Ghz Single core despite the fact that the dual processors are clocked at 800 MHz individually.
Problem? Sounds fine to me.

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Snarl 12/8
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Post by Snarl 12/8 » Fri Dec 04, 2009 11:27 am

dcsimon wrote:Just some food for thought, in the end I would say that a 1.6 GHz Dual core will outperform a 1.6Ghz Single core despite the fact that the dual processors are clocked at 800 MHz individually.
What I'm saying is that I'd prefer a 3.2GHz single core over a 1.6GHz dual core. Even if the dual cores are clocked at 1.6GHz individually (which was my understanding). I've seen no empirical evidence that Windows XP does a very good job of doling out work to multiple processors.

It's not a totally easy decision though. It depends on the workload you're looking at. For my desktop that's got TOMB, email, word processor, mp3 player, firewall, AV, etc., etc. going I'd probably go with the dual proc. On my DAW that's just got Reaper up (as far as user apps) I'd go fast single proc. (Actually, I'm going slow single proc (threaded) because I'm a tightwad.)
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Post by apropos of nothing » Sat Dec 05, 2009 10:38 am

I'm doing multitracking on a MOTU 828 mk II to a Vaio 2.13ghz core duo ("centrino" i think -- a couple years old) with 2 gigs memory and 5400 drive. It works fine. Don't usually go to massive track counts though. I can play back the 3-12 tracks of audio that I usually need and run some plugs without hassle. This is all using Reaper, and I've given up on soft-synths.

One thing I would look for in a recording laptop is a video system that has dedicated memory rather than using system memory.

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Post by Andy Peters » Sat Dec 05, 2009 12:54 pm

dcsimon wrote:... despite the fact that the dual processors are clocked at 800 MHz individually.
Where did you hear that bit of nonsense?

That's completely untrue.

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Crocoduck5000
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Re: CPU speeds?

Post by Crocoduck5000 » Fri Dec 11, 2009 10:07 am

louisgriffin wrote:
the laptop i'm looking at has specs such as:

# 1.3GHz Intel SU7300 Core 2 Duo Processor
# 4GB of DDR3 RAM
# 320GB 7200rpm HDD


would this be good enough to do some music stuff in REAPER and Audiomulch? They both don't seem to be that resource intensive. Plus, I also use my own custom rolled version of XP that's incredibly small and light.


opinions?
I do all sorts of soft-synth work on my Macbook with 2GB of RAM and a Core 2 Duo @ 2.0Ghz. There are latency issues if I do not freeze every other track I'm working with while I use my synths (FM8, Reaktor, Reason, Massive, Chipsounds, etc) along with other plugins (PSP Vintage Warmer especially). Once I freeze the tracks then I'm golden, and I can always unfreeze to change settings. I was recently playing a set of FM8 synths over 20 other "frozen" tracks and I never went over 8% CPU usage (this is at 24-88.2, mind you).

So yeah you just have to approach your DAW in a certain way that frees up as much CPU usage as possible. Also, make sure your "TinyXP" (or whatever nLite distro you have made) is SP3 since earlier service packs are far less efficient with multiple cores!

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Crocoduck5000
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Re: CPU speeds?

Post by Crocoduck5000 » Fri Dec 11, 2009 10:08 am

louisgriffin wrote:
the laptop i'm looking at has specs such as:

# 1.3GHz Intel SU7300 Core 2 Duo Processor
# 4GB of DDR3 RAM
# 320GB 7200rpm HDD


would this be good enough to do some music stuff in REAPER and Audiomulch? They both don't seem to be that resource intensive. Plus, I also use my own custom rolled version of XP that's incredibly small and light.


opinions?
I do all sorts of soft-synth work on my Macbook with 2GB of RAM and a Core 2 Duo @ 2.0Ghz. There are latency issues if I do not freeze every other track I'm working with while I use my synths (FM8, Reaktor, Reason, Massive, Chipsounds, etc) along with other plugins (PSP Vintage Warmer especially). Once I freeze the tracks then I'm golden, and I can always unfreeze to change settings. I was recently playing a set of FM8 synths over 20 other "frozen" tracks and I never went over 8% CPU usage (this is at 24-88.2, mind you).

So yeah you just have to approach your DAW in a certain way that frees up as much CPU usage as possible. Also, make sure your "TinyXP" (or whatever nLite distro you have made) is SP3 since earlier service packs are far less efficient with multiple cores!

mrc
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Post by mrc » Sat Dec 12, 2009 9:09 am

3ghz or higher, 4 gigs of ddr3 with a dual or quad core will just about give you freedom to do what you like. Uad's will really help.
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Post by desdinova » Sat Dec 12, 2009 12:21 pm

Snarl 12/8 wrote:fast P4's over slow dual cores
A broad rule of thumb is to double (~1.5-2, depending) the clock speed of a P-M/Core1/Core2 series to get the P4 equivalent. Even a two generations old Core1 will destroy the P4s. The P4 line was a bad road that Intel stayed on far too long.
A P4-HT 3GHz is no match for even a 1.6GHz Core2Duo. That's just straight chip vs chip grunt. Once you add in modern memory, caching, bus and an extra core, it's night and day.

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Post by mrc » Sat Dec 12, 2009 11:08 pm

I have a fast quad with 800 DDR2 and Sata 2, with a couple of UAD's it was very satisfactory. It, unfortunately wouldn't run a TC powercore card, as well.
Picked up a 700+ mhz faster dual core cpu and a mobo that would run the UAD's and powercore, along with some faster ddr3 memory, and it just just blows the quad away, so far. Both have 4 gigs of mem. I've run cubase since version 3 so am looking at an interface to lock the machines together, so as to take advantage of the quad as a synth. There are lan programs to do the same, but It seems to me bringing them in as stems would be more like a live mixing situation. I don't know...it seems I've read that Reaper has this lan ability built in. Has anyone tested it?
I have a very fast laptop as well, but I don't see it as an all in one solution. What I've learned over time is that the gear you have is an investment, and you need to figure out ways to keep using that investment as time goes on. I don't buy the idea that the last 10 years worth of computers are worthless, we need to look for solutions that let us continue to use the technology we have, that is still working, in a meaningful manner. After all is that die for 1930's-80's electronic gear, and the antique acoustic instruments from the past that are still playable worthless? It's not only the gear we are looking at, it's what we have now, and what we will accumulate. How can we use our money invested to it's fullest extent?
mrc

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kingmetal
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Post by kingmetal » Fri Dec 18, 2009 10:15 am

CPU speeds used to be a pretty simple linear affair, but it's very important to consider the architecture of the processor now and not just the clock speed. For example, a Pentium 4 3.2 ghz chip is not equivalent to an AMD Athon XP 3.2ghz chip (the Athlon would be MUCH faster in most applications). The architecture of the chipset is critical to determining the kind of performance you'll receive on the other end, and while I agree with what some people are saying about single-core chips, multi-core is pretty hard to avoid these days and in a DAW situation I think they have a lot of advantages.

I'm not familiar with the exact chip you're trying to pick up in that laptop but I'd be a little leery of how low it's clocked. Core 2 Duos are great, efficient and cheap chips -- but I think that particular chip is geared as 'ultra-low-voltage' , which is great for battery life but will probably hurt you performance wise. I'd look more in the 2ghz range for a Core 2 Duo, which should be totally affordable (I've had a 2ghz C2D in my laptop for the better part of 3 years now).

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