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Thread: Computer not up to job?

  1. #1
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    Computer not up to job?

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    Hi

    I've previously used a stand alone recorder however after a 10 year break from recording I've started using the bandlab DAW on my PC. I'm having problems recording and playing back. The major issue is the fact that the track plays slower and distorts. This happens about 50% of the time, even when I'm just using one track. The other issue is latency and the lag seems to vary between recordings, even when using the samemic. I have no such issues when playing back through the android app on my phone. I don't know much about computers but I'm thinking my PC may not be up to the job, even with a fairly basic DAW. Can someone advise and let me know if this is indeed the issue. My pc is Aspire ES1 - 531. Processor is Intel R Pentium. CPU N3700 @ 1.6 GHZ. RAM is 8GB of which 7.83GB is usable. System type states it is 64 bit x 64 based processor.

    Any advice most welcome!

    Regards Mark

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    It looks like you're pushing things with your current spec, especially the processor.
    From Bandlab's website:

    What are the minimum requirements for using Cakewalk by BandLab?
    August 05, 2019 05:01

    Operating System: Windows 7, 8/8.1 or 10 (64-bit)
    Processor: 2.6GHz Intel or AMD multi-core processor (at least Intel i5 or AMD A10 APU recommended)
    Memory: 4GB
    Hard Drive: 5GB for minimal install (20GB recommended)
    Monitor Resolution: 1280x800 (1920 x 1080 recommended)
    Audio Interface: ASIO compatible hardware is recommended

    While the N3700 is a multicore processor, running at 1.6GHz is on the low side. Its a relatively older processor, being discontinued in Jan 2015. There are things you can do to a system to optimize it for recording, specifically to keep the processor from having to handle other tasks (things like wifi, virus scanning, etc). That's going to involve digging into the system, and if you're not computer savvy, you can muck things up pretty quickly. Once quick way to see how much is going on is to launch TaskManager and see what processes are running, and how much CPU is being used. Also, disable any power saving features to keep the processor from slowing down. Systems try to save energy and extend battery life by throttling down the processor. You want it running full speed all the time.

    Also, you don't mention what interface you are using. Is it just a USB mic, or do you have an audio interface like a Focusrite or Tascam? What drivers are running? THey make a big difference.

    I understand where you're coming from... I have an older laptop that will mix a few track in Reaper before it gets bogged down. If I use an old Cubase LE1, it is better, but more limited. My 9Y old desktop has a 6 core AMD Phenom X6 running 2.6GHz and 8GB and will easily mix a 10 or 12 track mix, but it had high latency with my Tascam interface. When I started getting more serious about having a computer rig, I ended up with a new 3.2gHz I5 desktop with 12G ram and it runs Reaper fine both mixing and recording.

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    Thanks Rich...its actually the bandlab DAW rather than cakewalk but I suspect system recommendations will be similar. I'm using a focusrite solo as interface.

    Thus far I've found that Samsung galaxy S9 can handle playing back multi tracks through the app with no problem. It's obviously not the solution but I may try and record through that for now and keep an eye out for a decent spec PC.

    Mark

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    Quote Originally Posted by oldepro View Post
    Why choose bandlab and not cakewalk nee sonar?
    Only really because I came across bandlab first and wrote a couple of drum tracks in it...I'm new to DAWs and probably a bit bothered about the learning curve...I found I like the way you can build a drum track and add other midi instruments in bandlab...does cakewalk come with a good range of drum sounds / other midi sounds?

    Given that it looks like I'll be getting a new PC or mac I'm thinking it may be the right time to start using a more pro DAW.

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    If you want a DAW that works well with less powerful processors then Reaper is probably the best choice. It will record 24 tracks simultaneously on my ancient AMD Sempron laptop with only 768MB of memory. It is probably best to avoid high sample rates (though I'm just about to attempt 16 tracks at 96kHz on that system tonight) and stick with Reaper's built-in effects which are very tightly coded.
    JRP Music - Audio Mastering and Restoration
    http://www.jrpmusic.co.uk

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    Quote Originally Posted by oldepro View Post
    Why choose bandlab and not cakewalk nee sonar?
    Quote Originally Posted by jamesperrett View Post
    If you want a DAW that works well with less powerful processors then Reaper is probably the best choice. It will record 24 tracks simultaneously on my ancient AMD Sempron laptop with only 768MB of memory. It is probably best to avoid high sample rates (though I'm just about to attempt 16 tracks at 96kHz on that system tonight) and stick with Reaper's built-in effects which are very tightly coded.
    Thanks...I had neglected to mention that bandlab is cloud based so may well be effecting my PCs ability to cope...given the specs mentioned on my first post, would my current pc be able to run Reaper without issues?

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    Reaper has a low footprint and CPU demand, so it should work fine.

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    Quote Originally Posted by oldepro View Post
    Why choose bandlab and not cakewalk nee sonar?
    Quote Originally Posted by jamesperrett View Post
    If you want a DAW that works well with less powerful processors then Reaper is probably the best choice. It will record 24 tracks simultaneously on my ancient AMD Sempron laptop with only 768MB of memory. It is probably best to avoid high sample rates (though I'm just about to attempt 16 tracks at 96kHz on that system tonight) and stick with Reaper's built-in effects which are very tightly coded.
    Quote Originally Posted by gecko zzed View Post
    Reaper has a low footprint and CPU demand, so it should work fine.
    👍..thanks

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    If I give reaper a go on this PC and it was slow, would I be able to add it to an upgraded PC without having to purchase another license?

    Mark

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    yes

    When you pay for a licence you get a Reaper Key file. You can takes this to the new computer.

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