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Topic: Advice on new Film Scoring Home Studio

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  1. #1

    Advice on new Film Scoring Home Studio

    Hi Everyone!
    I am about to start building a setup used primarily for film scoring projects. With the recent changes to 64 bit and the powerfull macpro, I'm a little confused about I now need in terms of hardware.
    I'd like to use GigaStudio 4 on slaves as well as EastWest/Spectrasonics/VSL with DP or Logic as the sequencer on a macpro.

    Are slave PC's a thing of the past or are they still needed if I want to run these programs?

    Thank you for your help

  2. #2

    Re: Advice on new Film Scoring Home Studio

    yea you still need slaves. There is still a bottle neck with 64 bit systems at about 8 gigs or ram worth of samples loaded, which while it makes a whole lot more options than the past, the samples are a lot larger and more complex stacked layers so you use more system resources as well.

    I think 2 64 bit GS4 machines and a seperate DAW and you will be in solid shape
    Christopher Kennedy Alpiar
    Cinematic Composer
    www.alpiar.com

  3. #3

    Re: Advice on new Film Scoring Home Studio

    Thanks for clearing that up!
    So if I have a MacPro as my DAW with Giga slaves, how would I connect everything together? Is there a way to do it without using Cubase because I plan to use DP as my sequencer.
    I've heard about MIDIoverLAN and ADAT lightpipe but what would I need in terms of interfaces?

    Any help would be much appreciated.
    Thanks!

  4. #4

    Re: Advice on new Film Scoring Home Studio

    DAW: OSX 10.5.2, quad xeon 2.6 9 gig ram
    Motu pci-424 w/ 2 2408 MKIII expansions (each has 24 lightpipe i/o and 8 analog i/o)
    MidiOverLan Platinum 4 seat license

    Giga1: Intel CoreDuo 2.8 4 gig ram Win xp (64 bit)
    RME HDSP 9652
    MidiOverLan
    GS4

    Giga2: Intel CoreDuo 2.8 2 gigs ram Win xp (32 bit)
    RME HDSP 9652
    MidiOverLan
    GS3 Orchestra

    adding a new GS4 machine sometime this summer a'la Giga1
    Christopher Kennedy Alpiar
    Cinematic Composer
    www.alpiar.com

  5. #5

    Re: Advice on new Film Scoring Home Studio

    Quote Originally Posted by TheAlps View Post
    yea you still need slaves. There is still a bottle neck with 64 bit systems at about 8 gigs or ram worth of samples loaded, which while it makes a whole lot more options than the past, the samples are a lot larger and more complex stacked layers so you use more system resources as well.

    I think 2 64 bit GS4 machines and a seperate DAW and you will be in solid shape
    A bottleneck at 8 gigs ram? Can you elaborate on this one?

    I want to buy a server mainboard ( for dual dualcore setup) with the possibility
    of adding up to either 16 or 32 gigs of ram.

    I will be using Vista 64bit.
    best regards

    Przemyslaw K.

  6. #6

    Re: Advice on new Film Scoring Home Studio

    Quote Originally Posted by Przemek K. View Post
    A bottleneck at 8 gigs ram? Can you elaborate on this one?

    I want to buy a server mainboard ( for dual dualcore setup) with the possibility
    of adding up to either 16 or 32 gigs of ram.

    I will be using Vista 64bit.
    The limitations of most motherboards is 8 gig, assuming the most you can fit into one ram slot is 2G. When 4G sticks are available/more affordable, that will go up to a max of 16G. (Could someone please tell me if I'm wrong here - I'm building an 8G quadcore with the plan to upgrade to 16G sometime in the next year when a 4G stick costs a lot less than $400 each.)

    Server boards like you are looking at, however, can easily exceed 8G of ram.


  7. #7

    Re: Advice on new Film Scoring Home Studio

    The prices for DDR2 ram (even ECC) dropped rapidly since last year.
    So, I want to start with 8gigs but be flexible to add later on more.

    Now that GS4 is 64bit and Kontakt 3 will be updated to 64 bit this year as well,
    I could built a big template for only one workstation and have not a need for a slave.
    best regards

    Przemyslaw K.

  8. #8

    Re: Advice on new Film Scoring Home Studio

    Quote Originally Posted by Przemek K. View Post
    A bottleneck at 8 gigs ram? Can you elaborate on this one?

    I want to buy a server mainboard ( for dual dualcore setup) with the possibility
    of adding up to either 16 or 32 gigs of ram.

    I will be using Vista 64bit.
    Partly to go past 8 gigs of ram on a PC you have to get into very high priced server motherboards (like cheapest ones starting a 600 range), but thats not realy what I mean. Its more about hard disc streaming

    Keep in mind only the pre-buffer of a sample is loaded into ram, the rest of the sounds stream from your hard disc. With 8 gigs of sounds loaded (which is a LOT) you are alreayd maxing out the response times of your hard discs and your system buss. So in my opinion getting more than 8g today isnt really for more than bragging rights. Of course it cant hurt your system but the benefit you get from it wont really help in loading more sounds

    you might get use from 16g of ram with an 8 core server board and a whole buttload of 10k rpm drives... but at the cost to build that its much cheaper just to make a 2nd (and 3rd and 4th at that price!) dual core machine with another 8g of ram

    the old sting we have felt for years now on 32 bit systems has been in RAM limitations and so many of us have this feeling that FIX THE RAM and we will be free into infinity.... well its just not so. I would love someone to come up with a cost effective means of creating a sample engine PC that makes good use of more than 8g of ram, but I think as of today its not really doable
    Christopher Kennedy Alpiar
    Cinematic Composer
    www.alpiar.com

  9. #9

    Re: Advice on new Film Scoring Home Studio

    Quote Originally Posted by TheAlps View Post
    Partly to go past 8 gigs of ram on a PC you have to get into very high priced server motherboards (like cheapest ones starting a 600 range), but thats not realy what I mean. Its more about hard disc streaming

    Keep in mind only the pre-buffer of a sample is loaded into ram, the rest of the sounds stream from your hard disc. With 8 gigs of sounds loaded (which is a LOT) you are alreayd maxing out the response times of your hard discs and your system buss. So in my opinion getting more than 8g today isnt really for more than bragging rights. Of course it cant hurt your system but the benefit you get from it wont really help in loading more sounds

    you might get use from 16g of ram with an 8 core server board and a whole buttload of 10k rpm drives... but at the cost to build that its much cheaper just to make a 2nd (and 3rd and 4th at that price!) dual core machine with another 8g of ram

    the old sting we have felt for years now on 32 bit systems has been in RAM limitations and so many of us have this feeling that FIX THE RAM and we will be free into infinity.... well its just not so. I would love someone to come up with a cost effective means of creating a sample engine PC that makes good use of more than 8g of ram, but I think as of today its not really doable

    Well, I was going to buy server mainboard where I can put at least 16 gig of ram running Vista 64 bit with Cubase 4 32bit and 64Bit.

    Samplers: Gigastudio 3 /Gvi and Kontakt 3. Will be upgraded/updated to 64 bit as well and the idea was to load up a whole lot of libraries and make a template.

    How far can I go with 8 gigs of ram? I mean how much of this 8 gigs can be used? The OS will want to have a little bit too, if I'm not mistaken.

    My current workstation is:

    AMD Athlon 64 X2 4400+ (dualcore)
    2 gig Ram
    2x 74 gig RAPTOR
    1x 512 gig Seagate
    1x 120 gig OS/Application
    1x 250 gig WD

    Well, with an workstation which has 8 gigs of ram its an pretty update, I only fear that I can't load all/most of my libraries.

    My second workstation which was for Gs3 only will be sold so having all on one workstation seemed to be good idea.
    best regards

    Przemyslaw K.

  10. #10

    Re: Advice on new Film Scoring Home Studio

    Quote Originally Posted by TheAlps View Post

    Keep in mind only the pre-buffer of a sample is loaded into ram, the rest of the sounds stream from your hard disc. With 8 gigs of sounds loaded (which is a LOT) you are alreayd maxing out the response times of your hard discs and your system buss. So in my opinion getting more than 8g today isnt really for more than bragging rights. Of course it cant hurt your system but the benefit you get from it wont really help in loading more sounds

    you might get use from 16g of ram with an 8 core server board and a whole buttload of 10k rpm drives... but at the cost to build that its much cheaper just to make a 2nd (and 3rd and 4th at that price!) dual core machine with another 8g of ram

    the old sting we have felt for years now on 32 bit systems has been in RAM limitations and so many of us have this feeling that FIX THE RAM and we will be free into infinity.... well its just not so. I would love someone to come up with a cost effective means of creating a sample engine PC that makes good use of more than 8g of ram, but I think as of today its not really doable
    Not speaking from personal experience - but I have read of instances of this being successfully done (search Robert Kooijman as a user at this forum for an example) - especially with multiple instances of K2-3 standalone via midi-yoke or similar. With that kind of VST usage - (nearly 2G for each instance of K) you can easily eat up more than 8G of RAM.

    In the very near future I think it will be cheaper to get 16G on one machine compared to the cost of building extra slave machines - it simply depends on the price of high ram sticks.

    I'll let you know how I go with it...

    PS: Christopher - you mention maxing out the response times of your harddrives with more than 8G ram loaded - what drive configuration were you using? Did you load up around 8G of samples or higher?

    cheers!


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