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Topic: When will we reach 64-bit Nirvana?

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  1. #1

    When will we reach 64-bit Nirvana?

    Here it is, Q3 2007. We've had many, many generations of 64-bit chips from AMD and Intel - and motherboards that support them. We've had two generations of 64-bit operating systems from Microsoft. Hardware, driver and application developers have seen this coming for years.

    So, why can't we load up 8GB of RAM with samples just yet - or can we?

    Last week I bought my wife a laptop, and mentioned that her old desktop might be nice to convert to a sample engine. She wanted to know why I needed another dang computer. I explained the whole sample/RAM relationship and what it does to work flow - and our time.

    I then realized that I don't want another computer with networking/audio cards/cables/KVMs/remote desktops. I want a single fast PC with fast drives and 8GB or more or RAM. That's my next upgrade.

    As a kid on a long, sweaty drive might say, "are we there yet?"

    Vista's audio support apparently isn't streamlined. I assume we need XP64. Then we need an audio card and drivers. Next is a mobo with lotsa RAM capacity. Any current CPU will do. But will GVI or K2 make use of the space? And which sequencer will play nice? And what about a VSTi host that can handle all that RAM? And what of all these stupid proprietary samplers? VI? Play? and on and on...

    And ...will it be stable?

    Anybody want such a setup?

    Anybody got such a setup?

    Having just completed a 48-hour film project, I'm fed up with the current RAM limits. I want my samples to have access to the better part of 8GB of RAM for Christmas!

  2. #2
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    Re: When will we reach 64-bit Nirvana?

    Indeed, Jon. It is frustrating to see processing advance at such a rate while RAM usage seems to be progressing so slowly.

    The only silver lining we currently have is the fact that scripting, convolution modelling and iMIDI have given developers the opportunity to reduce sample-pool size while simultaneously making libraries and sample-based VI's more playable and natural sounding. Generally, this results in extra taxation on one's CPU while reducing RAM requirements-or at least it keeps them the same while the sounds continue to improve. So in lieu of growing RAM capacity, we have a move toward shrinking libs that are still better than the old ones. The CPU part is fine, since, as I said, CPU's are getting faster all the time. But RAM nirvana will only come when we have great libs that are small, and enough RAM to load jillions of them.

    I've seen a steady stream of discussions about vista and 64-bit since I joined here a couple of years ago, but I sure have not seen the pudding. I know that sampler-developers are working hard on 64-bit comatibility, because we all know that's where samplists want to be....but why is Microsoft saying they care about audio when it is obvious that they have forsaken it in favor of mass-market oriented features like animated desktops??

    Personally, I'll keep my eye on on ways for libs and workflow to be continually streamlined until I see some indication that MS is going to give us something we can use. And even then, smaller will be better, since everone who buys libs buys a bunch. Drive size and speed doesn't seem to be advancing very quickly either, y'know

    -Belbin

  3. #3

    Re: When will we reach 64-bit Nirvana?

    Cobain's dead man!


  4. #4
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    Re: When will we reach 64-bit Nirvana?

    Quote Originally Posted by jddamas
    Cobain's dead man!

    ???

    -Belbin

  5. #5

    Re: When will we reach 64-bit Nirvana?

    Quote Originally Posted by belbin
    ???

    -Belbin
    The singer remember?

  6. #6
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    Re: When will we reach 64-bit Nirvana?

    Of course. But what does he have to do with...oh nevermind. I get it.

    Haha! Nevermind! I made a funny too!

    -Belbin

  7. #7

    Re: When will we reach 64-bit Nirvana?

    Hi Jon,
    I would keep an eye on WIVI for a while. I guess conservatively that their full set of brass and woodwinds may cut one's total instrument memory usage by 1/4, in an orchestral and choral scenario.
    Cheers,
    Chris

  8. #8

    Re: When will we reach 64-bit Nirvana?

    I think we are just around the corner from 64bit computing on a mass scale. The hardware is now available economically to address large memory. You can certainly run 64 bit XP or Vista. Sonar runs on that platform. But note that not all software apps have been made compatible with 64bit platforms or made to take advantage of it. So its still a bit of an early time to adopt. But i feel that we are just around the corner. At some point something will happen that is like a catalyst that will force software vendors to make their software 64bit compliant, and audio hardware will have to provide drivers, and eventually you won't even have much of a choice to use 32bit anymore, but i feel that is a few years off yet. But I think within 3-5 years, we'll be able to do everything on 64bit that we can do now. However, as of right now this minute, its still a bit early and only for the adventurous.
    "Music is a manifestation of the human spirit similar to a language. If we do not want such things to remain dead treasures, we must do our utmost to make the greatest number of people understand their secrets" -- Zoltan Kodaly

  9. #9

    Re: When will we reach 64-bit Nirvana?

    Quote Originally Posted by dewdman42
    ...But I think within 3-5 years, we'll be able to do everything on 64bit that we can do now...
    The thing that frustrates me is that I've already owned 64-bit hardware for 3-5 years. Nuts, huh?

    I'm mindful that you wrote "we'll be able to do everything on 64bit." Clearly, my sights are lower, so there should be no need for a long wait. All I need is Sonar 6 (which I already own), an audio card wtih a 64-bit driver, a 64-bit compatible audio card (c'mon M-Audio, get with it! - I can always pick up an Echo Audio card...), and... a 64-bit sampler and possibly a host.

    Here's an idea: couldn't a 64-bit VSTi host load 32-bit VSTis in multiple 2 GB spaces? The 32-bit programs would believe that they are in 32-bit land, but the host knows better. Hey, Plogue! Are you listening? Bidule64 with 32-bit VSTi compatibility would be awesome!

    Anyway, it seems the sampler/host is the last hurdle.

    Regarding modeling, rather than big sample pools, that's fine, but I rather like my Westgate Modular Woodwinds. I don't want to have to buy a new set of libs, just because of the 2GB limit - especially since we are on the verge of a RAM breakthrough.

    Frankly, I want to buy libs based on sound, playability, plugging holes in my arsenal, and, of course, price/value. Also, my 2-1/2 year old PC needs upgrading to run lots of synth instruments and still have the guts left for convolution.

    So, here's the deal. When a workable 64-bit 8GB+ solution is available, I'm ready to buy. Until then, I'm saving up. I'm going for the whole enchilada - or nothing. (Why buy halfway now when better stuff comes out every quarter?)

    This is my own personal 32-bit boycott.

    And, yes, developers. Windows XP 64 is fine with me. It's stupid that Vista is so lame with pro audio, but it is what it is...

  10. #10

    Re: When will we reach 64-bit Nirvana?

    Quote Originally Posted by JonFairhurst
    Here's an idea: couldn't a 64-bit VSTi host load 32-bit VSTis in multiple 2 GB spaces? The 32-bit programs would believe that they are in 32-bit land, but the host knows better. Hey, Plogue! Are you listening? Bidule64 with 32-bit VSTi compatibility would be awesome!
    The 32-bit address space is 4 gigs. Windows XP just takes half of it. That's the point of the 3GB switch, it changes the split to 3+1 instead of 2+2. 32-bit apps get the full 4 gigs in Vista64 if they happen to know what to do with it. I don't know if a 64-bit application can host 32-bit applications. The abilitity to run 32-bit applications in 64-bit Windows is a feature of the operating system and most likely doing that in an application is impossible or atleast too difficult to be reasonable.

    So, here's the deal. When a workable 64-bit 8GB+ solution is available, I'm ready to buy. Until then, I'm saving up. I'm going for the whole enchilada - or nothing. (Why buy halfway now when better stuff comes out every quarter?)
    Buy something when you need something. That saves you a lot of trouble.

    And, yes, developers. Windows XP 64 is fine with me. It's stupid that Vista is so lame with pro audio, but it is what it is...
    Vista64 works a lot better for me than Windows XP. It's not perfect but it works. XP kinda didn't.

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