Hm, and what about all the DRM watchdog features? I’ll probably wait a *very* long time before even thinking of installing Vista. In fact, it’s very likely that I’ll buy a MacBook before that.
January 19, 2007 @ 1:57 pm
Believe me, I’m looking at DRM. The deal is, there aren’t any apparent ill effects for audio streams from audio applications in Vista. Unless you’re trying to route audio from an HD-DVD in Windows Media Player into SONAR, it doesn’t look like this will be much of an issue. At some point in Vista’s development, there was talk of adding DRM features to pro audio apps — thankfully, that never happened.
The only feature that really touches pro audio / music is driver validation — it’s not DRM per se, but it is a component of Vista that impacts what we do. And I think we’ve gotten some thorough information from Cakewalk on this, including the revelation that you WILL be able to install unvalidated 64-bit drivers, which initially many had reported was not the case. This doesn’t say anything definitive about future versions — but then, unless you can see into the future, that’s never possible.
We could follow up on this, but honestly, so much of that discussion has been theoretical — and often based on outdated information — that I think it’ll be best to try the final Vista build and judge this on the OS itself.
The bottom line on DRM in Vista is a lot like the bottom line with XP and OS X; despite some early (and legitimate) scares, if you really don’t like DRM, run software that doesn’t have it — like VLC, Songbird, and your music creation apps (well, not counting copy protection).
The one thing I am concerned about is Vista’s own validation requirements (for the OS, not media), but again, the best way to test that will be to test that OS. About that installation disc, Microsoft?
January 19, 2007 @ 2:18 pm
As you guessed, the Built-in drivers on the MacBooks do rock.
Using a LightSnake (USB) with Garageband I can actually use the real-time monitoring with effects while playing my guitar - pretty much can use the MacBook (standard not even Pro) as a portable amp with effects.
As of now, this just isn’t possible with my Centrino 1.7 and the Window’s OS built-in drivers. It will be great if this changes with Vista.
January 19, 2007 @ 5:49 pm
Anders, do you mean it’s not possible because of latency on Windows? I’m assuming Microsoft will update the class-compliant support for WaveRT; if you’re using software (like Cakewalk’s) that supports WaveRT and MMCSS, you should indeed see a major difference.
Oh, and for what you’re describing, Pro vs. standard MacBook should make no difference at all; the usual advice about fast hard drives and lots of RAM applies, but that’s it. A Centrino 1.7 should be perfectly capable of low-latency performance, as well, with the same spec caveats.
January 19, 2007 @ 5:58 pm
more than enough new acronyms and creepy services and OS-level bandaids and certification processes to make anyone in the market for a new windows machine for music start to think twice
havent even read that ‘cost analysis of Vista’ myself - Ubuntu, no weird acronyns…just a glance in the Swahili dictionaruy
January 19, 2007 @ 8:39 pm
also, i wouldnt hold your breath for working drivers - the reason i switched to linux, was beacuse EchoAudio failed to release win64 drivers, despite someone there personally replying to my email saying they were coming when win64 came out - and a year later, still vapor. the support still seems to be hit or miss depending on how new the product is. adding WAvRT and CCMS or whatever just makes more work for windows driver developers..
January 19, 2007 @ 8:45 pm
Well, this isn’t an OS comparison. Both the Mac and Linux have a number of features and deeper integration of audio functionality that Vista, like its predecessors, lacks.
But this is a step forward for Windows, and I wouldn’t judge an OS by its number of acronyms. Protecting the kernel from misbehaved drivers and rebuilding the audio system for lower latency and better performance are good things. They might not switch you to Windows from Mac or Linux if you’re happy on those OSes, but they’ll make existing Windows users happier. And as someone running all three OSes (not necessarily recommended), I’m glad to see some improvement.
The proof is in the shipping OS, which I should have any day now. But I do respect the insight of the actual developers working with the system, and there are few people with more experience than Noel. That’s not an argument for any one OS; it’s an argument for getting the technical details from the people who built the thing.
January 19, 2007 @ 8:55 pm
What about tilt bits? From what I hear, some hardware interactions with the motherboard under Vista may cause a small(ish) crash when voltages reach a certain threashold. Could be bad news in a live performance situation where one needs to hardware-grade stability in one’s DAW. Any sort of “crash” even a small one could cause a severe mishap in a musical performance (I know, because it’s happened to me a couple of times).
I’m going to hold back until I know what hardware brands and models cause these sorts of stability issues before building a Vista system.
It’s funny that all this trouble is stemming from some ~~~~ I don’t even plan on buying into. Sorry MS, Toshiba, Sony, but ~~~~ those next generation formats. Too much hassle for only a small bit of quality improvement. Hell, I don’t even own a High-def television, why on earth would I want to rip a HD-DVD or blu-ray for anyway?
January 20, 2007 @ 2:32 am
Create Digital Music » Vista Audio Improvement Details — For Consumers, At Least
[…] Updated: Working with the top PC developer Cakewalk, we’ve gotten a more complete picture of pro audio and music creation in Vista. See our new story Vista for Music + Pro Audio: Exclusive Under the Hood with Cakewalk’s CTO. All that’s here, of course, remains relevant. […]
January 21, 2007 @ 1:53 pm
I haven’t seen (or heard) anything in Vista that surpasses Apple’s OSX CoreAudio integration.
Adrian, I’ll have to investigate further on the copy protection mechanisms; there’s nothing obvious that will cause problems at this point but it’ll take more investigation on the subtler points and the range of possible configurations. As far as the question of whether there’s incentive enough to upgrade from XP, I think these points demonstrate there is — it’s just the other side of the equation we need to get to know better.
Dano, like I said, this is not an OS comparison; I doubt very seriously that many people are looking at Vista as a reason to switch *to* Windows from Mac. There is no equivalent in Vista for device aggregation, the OS X Hardware Abstraction Layer and device sharing, inter-application MIDI, or shared MIDI configurations. Also, I’m still concerned about plug-and-play USB and FireWire functionality in Vista; there are some serious issues in XP and it’s not clear yet whether they’ve been addressed. That’s not to say there’s not room for improvement in Core Audio — some of its functionality has caught on more than others, and I’d still like to see better inter-app audio, which is a whole other discussion. But, as I’ve said before and probably will say again, Vista narrows the gulf but doesn’t bridge it.
What Vista does promise to do is make life easier and more reliable for people running audio software on Windows. And I know some Mac users who want to dual-boot Intel Macs for the occasional project who want to know how Vista compares to XP, so this isn’t even just a PC thing any more.
A full-blown OS X / Vista comparison *might* be worthwhile at some point, but I think it’s pretty clear who wins. Anyway, most people aren’t trying to choose platforms on a day-to-day basis, and plenty of readers here (like myself) are dual-platform, so we’ll focus more on how to get the most out of each.
in my opinion the best acronym is VISTA (Vastly Inferior System, Totalitarian Authoritarianism). that's just my opinion.
i find the frequent and prolonged "security" interruptions annoying. sure there are good and bad aspects of vista. i just can't stand using it. my experience is horrible and my productivity is slowed down to a crawl. it makes the OS feel slow, sluggish and overtaxed compared to XP.
this doesn't have to do with the million and one processes going on in the background. rather it is the slowdowns caused by the OS checking every move i make to see if i'm a security threat to my own computer and that i'm doing everything "IT's way." customizing the system is either not allowed or almost impossible to find out how to do. at first i thought it might just be learning curve thing. it's not! i could be wrong, but i don't think so.
i love XP because it's transparent and easy to tailor. it allows me to focus on my work rather than IT. i've become very fond of it over the years (32-bit and then 64-bit). it's mature, robust and responsive. it's easy to tailor to my workstyle. it's like my favorite pair of old jeans, my worn in shoes and my good old friend combined. it's gotten better over the years like a fine old wine.
most threads i've read don't touch upon this. does anyone agree (or disagree)? if you agree, how do you tolerate and/or work around these beleagering frustrations?