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Topic: Minimum CPU and RAM requirements

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  1. #1

    Minimum CPU and RAM requirements

    I built my generic, daily-driver system about 5 years ago, upgrading the CPU and RAM to an Intel Pentium IV 2.8 GHz (478 pin) and 2 GB when I started orchestrating. I drive GPO SE with Sibelius 4, OS is XP. Since then the hardware technology has gotten speedier, but I haven't kept track.

    My system generally performs okay but it shudders and stutters while playing back a score where I have 16 systems in tutti including heavy use of rolling timpani. It would be nice to hear Gary's instruments sound like the programmers intended.

    What do the technically astute in this community suggest as CPU/RAM upgrades? I assume one or the other is the culprit.

    Soundcard is the venerable Soundblaster Live! 24, low low end but surprisingly I didn't notice much difference when I upgraded to another card (I forget which) a couple years ago, after researching it to death. It was a pain to use and expensive so I unloaded it. At garritan.com, James Ortner's Beethoven 5th and Dan Kury's Dvorak orchstrations with GPO4 sound stupendous on my AKG K240DF phones, so is the card much of a factor?

    Motherboard limit is 2GB, DDR266 or DDR200 modules Later generation CPU may require motherboard & RAM replacement. Any recommendations on mobos?

  2. #2
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    Re: Minimum CPU and RAM requirements

    Doug,

    You have plenty of RAM for GPO. The CPU is probably causing the stuttering. I did the original Beethoven's 5th on a P4 2.4 GHz with just 1 GB of RAM back in the GPO beta testing days. It is a smaller orchestra that Beethoven used back then. Larger orchestras need more CPU power. I would recommend a minimum Core 2 Duo these days. Cheaper Core i7 and i5 will be coming out next month which I would recommend as the Core 2 Duo processors have now been out for 3 years. The Core i7 is much faster!

    Jim

  3. #3
    Senior Member Sonare Coeli's Avatar
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    Re: Minimum CPU and RAM requirements

    Upgrading the processor depends on the maximum your motherboard will allow. Being that your system is already 5 years old, I would assume you are close to the maximum processor speed if not already there.

    I would recommend buying a new motherboard and a processor to go with it from www.newegg.com. For GPO Aria, Gary's team recommends a 1.8 GHz Core 2 Duo processor or better. I'd recommend something a little more robust if you expect to be doing large orchestrations or using other samples in conjunction with GPO and want your system to be viable for a few years to come. The faster the better - a 2.8 GHz Core 2 Duo processor on newegg is only around $110, so I'd get at least that or better. 2GB is enough for GPO, but if you want to run it in a sequencer with other VSTs then I'd go up to 4GB. Once again, RAM is cheap, so you might as well get some now while you've got your computer case open.

    Hope that helped you out a bit!

    Tyler

  4. #4
    Senior Member Sonare Coeli's Avatar
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    Re: Minimum CPU and RAM requirements

    Quote Originally Posted by Haydn View Post
    Cheaper Core i7 and i5 will be coming out next month which I would recommend as the Core 2 Duo processors have now been out for 3 years. The Core i7 is much faster!
    +1

    The faster the better. Having a faster processor will give you computer a lot more power now and insure that it's still useful a few years down the road.

  5. #5

    Re: Minimum CPU and RAM requirements

    Thanks for the comments, gentlemen. Looks like my suspicion that I should replace my mobo/CPU was correct. The choices and names and models are bewildering, though.

    So I did a little browsing. Is this (below) an appropriate set of benchmark charts for the kind of performance that sample playback requires, or is it too simplistic? The data are nicely laid out for comparison. My CPU, even though it plays back most scores satisfactorily, looks pretty anemic in these lineups (score 416). It appears that the Core 2 processors are at least 3x as fast, and the i7 as much as 15 times.

    So with these data in mind I assume I can go shopping at Newegg and compare price-performance ratios, unless the charts omit important factors for sound sample playback? And is there a compelling reason to prefer AMD or Intel?

    Benchmark source:
    http://www.cpubenchmark.net/index.php

    Here's a little comparison chart I made using data from cpubenchmark and Newegg. It starts at 4x my current speed.

    Newegg - CPU + motherboard combo deals (only CPU listed here)
    Price - benchmark speed - Model

    $129 - 1819 - Intel Pentium E6300 2.8GHz
    $129 - 1688 - AMD Athlon II X2 250 3.0GHz
    $130 - 1651 - AMD Athlon II X2 245 2.9GHz
    $142 - 1655 - AMD Phenom II X2 545 3.0GHz
    $169 - 1452 - Intel Core2 Duo E7500 2.93GHz
    $190 - 2713 - AMD Phenom 9750 2.4GHz
    $200 - 2917 - AMD Phenom 9950 2.6GHz
    $205 - 1854 - AMD Phenom II x2 550
    $220 - 1452 - Intel Core2 Duo E7500 2.93GHz
    $225 - 1868 - Intel Core 2 Duo E7400 2.8GHz
    $268 - 2143 - Intel Core 2 Duo E8400 3.0GHz
    $270 - 3063 - AMD Phenom II X4 945 3.0GHz
    $287 - 3063 - AMD Phenom II X4 945 3.0GHz
    $290 - 3684 - Intel Core2 Quad Q9400 2.66GHz LGA 775 95W Quad-Core
    $350 - 4414 - AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition 3.4GHz
    $409 - 4414 - AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition 3.4GHz
    $525 - 5452 - Intel Core i7 920 2.66GHz
    $775 - 6306 - Intel Core i7-950 3.06GHz
    $1270 - 7103 - Intel Core i7-975 Extreme Edition 3.33GHz

    The CPU with the best price-performance appears to be the AMD Phenom 9950. User reviewers at Newegg love it for the most part. But one warns of using quad core with some applications. Does quad core work for notation and GPO?

    Sorry for all the questions. These days you gotta get a masters degree in new technology every time you make a purchase.

  6. #6

    Re: Minimum CPU and RAM requirements

    And what about using GPO4 on a 2.4Ghz / 4 Gb RAM iMac?

    Fabio

  7. #7

    Re: Minimum CPU and RAM requirements

    Quote Originally Posted by Doug Smith View Post
    .....
    So I did a little browsing. Is this (below) an appropriate set of benchmark charts for the kind of performance that sample playback requires, or is it too simplistic? The data are nicely laid out for comparison. My CPU looks pretty anemic in these lineups. It appears that the Core 2 processors are at least 3x as fast, and the i7 as much as 15 times.
    Hello Doug,

    Here's the official Garritan guide to requirements which I quote from the 'Products GPO4 page'. As usual these are the minimum requirements and, generally speaking, it is better to exceed the minimum if possible.

    You can find the full page at:

    http://www.garritan.com/products_gpo4.html

    [Quote]

    System Requirements

    Running Personal Orchestra is dependent on the speed of your computer. The faster the processor the better.

    • 1.8 Ghz Core 2 Duo MacIntel or better; 2.8 Ghz CPU Pentium 4 or better (single core CPU). Users report G5 PPC Macs work, but no guarantee as you will not get optimal performance.
    • 2 GB RAM Recommended
    • 3.5 GB of free hard drive space
    • Hard drive speed of at least 7200 RPM
    • Internet connection for download version, DVD ROM drive required for boxed version installation.
    • Monitor with 1,024 x 768 resolution or better
    • A sound card compatible with ASIO, DirectSound, or MME
    • MIDI: A MIDI or USB interface may be required if you are using a n electronic keyboard (88-key full-sized MIDI keyboard recommended). A keyboard with Mod Wheel is highly recommended.
    • High quality speakers and amplifier, or high quality headphones
    • Internet connection for updates and online registration

      Copyright 2009 Garritan, Inc. All rights reserve

    [Unquote]
    Michael
    Patience is a virtue, sensitivity is a gift

  8. #8

    Re: Minimum CPU and RAM requirements

    Quote Originally Posted by fabiolcati View Post
    And what about using GPO4 on a 2.4Ghz / 4 Gb RAM iMac?

    Fabio
    Hello Fabio,

    Hope my previous post and specs helps with your query as well.
    Michael
    Patience is a virtue, sensitivity is a gift

  9. #9

    Re: Minimum CPU and RAM requirements

    Thanks, Michael.
    I'm now a little confused about the FAQ page suggestion for a "2.8 Ghz Core 2 Duo MacIntel or better for Mac"...

    Fabio

  10. #10
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    Re: Minimum CPU and RAM requirements

    I would wait until at least September 9th when Intel releases their newer processors. They will have a faster Core i7 for the same price as the current i7-920. I believe it's the i7-860. Also, they will be releasing a budget i5 model at the same time.

    Also, you will need to purchase DDR3 RAM at the same time. Right now 6 GB of DDR3 RAM can be purchased for around $100. Also, the Gigabyte GA-EX58 EXTREME motherboard seems to be pretty popular for DAW builders. It's a little more pricey but is quite stable for making music.

    Jim

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