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Topic: Audiophile latency = 5ms?

  1. #1

    Audiophile latency = 5ms?

    This is a repost from the Audiophile latency thread:

    Is the DMA buffer size the place where you can note your latency, as in the little popup information box that shows effects on latency with different sample rates and DMA buffer size options you choose. If so, I find I need to use 256 DMA buffer size at 44K hence latency is 5ms? If I dial down DMA buffer to 128 i get pops n clicks. So is 5ms the best latency I am able to get?

    I wonder if it's a shared IRQ issue described on M-audio site. I note my Audiophile is using IRQ 22, and therefore is shared with something else. Anyway to find out WHAT it is shared with? It appears alone at IRQ 22 in Device Mgr but the FAQ suggests it is sharing nonetheless.

    Last edited by Noel; 06-07-2004 at 12:27 AM. Reason: Repost annoucement

  2. #2

    Re: Audiophile latency = 5ms?

    5ms is super. I don't think my old Aark 20/20 runs faster than 10ms.

  3. #3

    Re: Audiophile latency = 5ms?

    Super compared to what? I keep seeing references to 1.5ms etc, so 5 sounds not so good. Are most people getting >5?

  4. #4
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2004

    Smile Re: Audiophile latency = 5ms?

    Quote Originally Posted by Noel
    Super compared to what? I keep seeing references to 1.5ms etc, so 5 sounds not so good. Are most people getting >5?
    Hi Noel,
    Does the system work?
    Are the tracks playing in sync?
    Do the mixes come together?
    Does it take less than three seconds to hear music after you press "PLAY"?

    If you can answer "Yes" to more than three of these qustions, forget the numbers and have fun ....

  5. #5

    Re: Audiophile latency = 5ms?

    Quote Originally Posted by Noel
    Super compared to what? I keep seeing references to 1.5ms etc, so 5 sounds not so good. Are most people getting >5?
    Sound travels at 340 meters per second, so 5 msec corresponds with a distance of 1,7 meter. Tap a foot while standing, do you perceive any latency between the movement and the sound?

    (Google with this string: "speed of sound in meters per second" - it gives a very nice result page).

    Sorry to be too educational, I just love to think about the relativity of all these technical data.

    Don't forget there are a lot more delays involved between keypress and sound from your speakers. Keyboard latency, midi-out and midi-in latencies, often TWICE the latency of the sound card (if you mix in your sequencer), etc.

    With my RME cards I am quite happy with 256 or 512 byte buffers. They can work a lower latencies, but then I lose precious CPU resources for plugins.


  6. #6

    Re: Audiophile latency = 5ms?

    Thanks all. I can't answer questions about tracks playing in sync because I haven't got that far yet. I'm just playing my keyboard to enjoy the nice piano samples available. I have PowerTracks Pro installed too, but it doesn't work too well on my system. Probably I need a separate system for sequencing. What about dedicated hardware sequencers, is this a good way to go too? I remember 10y ago my pal had a roland standalone sequencer and it worked great and of course was trouble free. I may just go that route so I can forget dealing with a second PC.

    If I were to try to do sequencing on a PC, what is the best way to go? Have a second PC and use midi-over-LAN or something like that? Simple and effective is my goal. What seq software is cheap yet effective? I would just 6-8 tracks of synth, piano and drums stuff. When I run PT Pro now, I get some clicks n pops. I have Giga on Drive C, samples on Drive D, PT Pro on Drive C.


  7. #7

    Re: Audiophile latency = 5ms?

    I can answer all of those questions. My system with the Audiophile sound card is not fast enough. I am hoping that the problem turns out to be a system tuning issue, but I expect that the problem is going to be the Audiophile sound card.

    I have the same results as mentioned by the original poster, I can only get the buffer size down to 256, before I start hearing pops and clicks. Although the dialog window claims that this results in 5 ms of latency, I don't believe their numbers, because I can definitely feel the latency.

    I can use my Kurzweil 1000PX sound module (which is now about 15 years old) and which is suppose to have a latency of around 3 ms (once again, I don't trust the numbers) and it delivers far superior latency performance to the performance delivered with any of my GigaStudio piano libraries.

    So even though the GigaStudio piano libraries deliver significantly superior sound, I generally end up playing through the Kurzweil for its superior latency performance. Also I still get ocassional pops and clicks at 256, especially on thick chords.

    So I am hoping that the RME sound card turns out to be the answer, but I am first going to ensure that my entire computer system is correctly tuned for my current Audiophile sound card.

  8. #8

    Re: Audiophile latency = 5ms?

    Pug, keep us posted as to your findings if you go with the RME card. I too note the lag compared against my Roland A90ex, but again, the sound is so much better (through headphones) with Giga. I might go with a RME card if there is a subjective difference. The other points about other sources of latency are definitely to be considered as well.


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