soft synths and quad cores...

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soft synths and quad cores...

Postby Synthetech » Wed Jul 10, 2013 4:24 pm

I recently read that a application must be specifically written to access more than one core on multi-core systems

is this true?
especially when it comes to software synths?

if so, what are the most popular software synths that use multi core systems
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Re: soft synths and quad cores...

Postby Ashe37 » Wed Jul 10, 2013 5:53 pm

Diva.

The ability of a softsynth to multithread also depends on your host. Many hosts will ensure threads get spread around by sending separate tracks to separate processor cores.
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Re: soft synths and quad cores...

Postby Synthetech » Thu Jul 11, 2013 5:43 am

I assume you mean a host, as in whichever app is running the VSTi or other softsynth inside it?

So I'm looking for DAW's that can "multithread" to host the synths in?
Last edited by Synthetech on Thu Jul 11, 2013 5:53 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: soft synths and quad cores...

Postby Ashe37 » Thu Jul 11, 2013 5:52 am

I just bought an off-lease z600 for $353 off of Ebay, and then spent another $80 to drop a (used, off-lease) matching processor into it... so, eight i7 cores for $433. Came with Win 7.
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Re: soft synths and quad cores...

Postby Synthetech » Thu Jul 11, 2013 6:01 am

Ashe37 wrote:eight i7 cores for $433


holy moley that's alot of power!

I made an error in that prev. post, it was not a 8 core system.

Guess I'm trying to get a jump in CPU power asap.. i've got money to burn now, just not that kinda money yet. Only about half that.
Sucks being broke all the time :(
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Re: soft synths and quad cores...

Postby Ashe37 » Thu Jul 11, 2013 6:05 am

And sadly enough, I won't be using it as a DAW, its for animation.
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Re: soft synths and quad cores...

Postby Synthetech » Thu Jul 11, 2013 6:10 am

This is the dual CPU system I was looking at

http://www.ebay.com/itm/281133074578?ss ... 1438.l2649

I'm probably looking at ancient systems, but if I managed to get something 8x better that what I have now, then surely I can make good use of it for awhile..
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Re: soft synths and quad cores...

Postby Ashe37 » Thu Jul 11, 2013 6:51 am

Note that that system is essentially a dual Core2Quad machine
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Re: soft synths and quad cores...

Postby cgren72 » Thu Jul 11, 2013 7:20 am

Just save up and put together an i5 or i7 machine. I rarely push my i7 to its full capacity, and unless you are planning on using very cpu hungry softsynths, its just overkill. I use a few additive synths that are rather intensive, and where I used to hit limitations, I rarely do with my i7. Don't bother with multi-cpu configurations because they are usually application specific, and probably wouldn't benefit you over just getting a new chip.
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Re: soft synths and quad cores...

Postby Ashe37 » Thu Jul 11, 2013 8:05 am

Multi-CPU configurations work fine with most DAWs. A 'quad-core CPU' is, after all, just four professor cores on one die (usually with a shared level 3 cache) so to the operating system, two quad-core CPUs is practically the same thing as one-eight core CPU or four dual-core CPUs. The 'dual socket machines are only for specific applications' was only true before multi-core CPUs became common (and even then, a DAW was one of those 'specific applications'). At this point, even *games* are written to multithread. Even REAPER will hand out as many threads as it can- especially if you use its option to have plugins run as a separate process. A Mac Pro is, after all, a dual socket system, and Logic can use multiple cores just fine as well. Pro Tools, it depends on the version, and I'm not sure about Cubase.
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Re: soft synths and quad cores...

Postby Synthetech » Thu Jul 11, 2013 1:52 pm

so the 8 core system I linked isnt worth the trouble?

I've tried to search out some kind of comparison between a 8 core system at around 2.4Ghz vs. newer chips and cant seem to find one.
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Re: soft synths and quad cores...

Postby Ashe37 » Thu Jul 11, 2013 2:29 pm

at 2.4 Ghz on a Core2 architecture, you mean.

My 'normal desktop machine' is a 2.66 Ghz Core2Quad.

The z600 I got arrived here as a single 2.26 Ghz Xeon, based on the i7 architecture.

With hyperthreading OFF (so, the i7 Xeon has 4 hardware threads) the 2.26 GHz i7 is 1.5 times faster than the 2.66 GHz Core2Quad.

With Hyperthreading ON (8 hardware threads) the 2.26 Ghz i7 Xeon was just slightly over 2x faster than the 2.66 Ghz Core2Quad.

Test workload was a fully multithreaded 3d render, set to use all hardware threads on both machines.

So the i7 (and i5 and i3) architecture is much faster than the Core2 architecture, even at lower clock speeds.

The machine you posted is the Xeon version of a 2.33 Ghz core2Quad. so working backwards, it would likely be 15% or so slower than my machine per CPU socket, times two... so a 2.66 GHz i7 would be about the same speed as that machine. (roughly, the i7s in my z600 are older architecture and about 15% slower than the current ones, clock-for-clock)) Of course, the slowest i7 currently sold is 3.4 Ghz, for $289.

That's pretty much why i grabbed the z600, it gave me a good reliable machine, with significant speed improvements over my existing system, for less than i would pay for the CPU and motherboard to upgrade my existing machine.
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Re: soft synths and quad cores...

Postby cgren72 » Thu Jul 11, 2013 5:53 pm

Ashe37 wrote:Multi-CPU configurations work fine with most DAWs. A 'quad-core CPU' is, after all, just four professor cores on one die (usually with a shared level 3 cache) so to the operating system, two quad-core CPUs is practically the same thing as one-eight core CPU or four dual-core CPUs. The 'dual socket machines are only for specific applications' was only true before multi-core CPUs became common (and even then, a DAW was one of those 'specific applications'). At this point, even *games* are written to multithread. Even REAPER will hand out as many threads as it can- especially if you use its option to have plugins run as a separate process. A Mac Pro is, after all, a dual socket system, and Logic can use multiple cores just fine as well. Pro Tools, it depends on the version, and I'm not sure about Cubase.


right, I was just saying that buying a used multi-cpu system probably wouldn't be beneficial over buying new
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Re: soft synths and quad cores...

Postby Synthetech » Sun Jul 14, 2013 9:41 pm

Thank you so much for taking time to help direct my PC purchase.

I chose to grab up this..

http://www.ebay.com/itm/DELL-PRECISION- ... 3a82c78be3


DELL PRECISION T5500
1x Quad Intel Xeon E5520 2.27 GHz
4 GB RAM
DVD+RW
nVidia Quadro® FX 580 512MB

no HD or OS (might have a Win7 or other OS COA on it though).

$220 to my door.

I have a 1TB HDD here to put in it.
I can gradually upgrade it as I go, but figured that wasnt a bad price for a base unit.
Later on a riser card with socket, heatsink and fan is needed to put the 2nd CPU in.. they run about $100 and a 2nd CPU should be about $30. The riser also doubles as a memory expansion too.

Like I said before, all I have is WinXP Pro onhand to install. Think it will operate it effectively enough to begin using it?
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Re: soft synths and quad cores...

Postby Ashe37 » Sun Jul 14, 2013 11:55 pm

XP Pro will work on it, sure
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