Author Topic: modplug system requirements  (Read 14691 times)

Offline tvdude

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modplug system requirements
« on: May 03, 2006, 19:15:14 »
Hi everyone.  What are the system requirements for OpenMPT_1.17RC2_generic?????  I am looking at buying a laptop computer, and the last thing I want is it to glitch during playback of a song.  I have searched the forums, but I haven't been able to come up with anything.  I can't see it being that much different than Modplug 1.16. Of course, I will be taking into account the use of vst and vsti cpu ussage when I buy one, but I just need the program stats.  Any help would be great.
Thanks.
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Offline georg

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« Reply #1 on: May 03, 2006, 19:34:23 »
Vst and VSTi usage and chainer VSTs can slow down my puter to a crawl. I'd definetly want a fast CPU n lot's of fast RAM. The faster the better. This of course doesn't tell you anything new or anwser your question but since the requirements change with the plugins you got running there may not be a clear anwser.

A side question: Could you run mpt form a 486? I think so...  :?:
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Offline DMNXS

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« Reply #2 on: May 03, 2006, 21:28:07 »
I can only second that, when I used MPT a few years back I noticed how little resources it took on my P4 1.7 GHz (yep, the first P4!).

Of course, as pointed out by georg, with VSTs you're totally in the dark regarding CPU and Mem usage. It all depends on the plugin and it's sound quality. And not to mention the amount of plugins you use.
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Offline speed-goddamn-focus

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« Reply #3 on: May 03, 2006, 22:21:15 »
When you get a laptop, be sure to check out ASIO4ALL. Those are ASIO drivers meant to be used with soundcards that have them natively, and they might boost the performance just enough. Other than that, get the fastest you can afford if you intend on using plugins.

Offline Sam_Zen

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« Reply #4 on: May 04, 2006, 00:25:05 »
I don't use Midi or Vst, so I can't tell about those requirements. Handling samples is enough for me to compose.
But I recently installed RC2 generic on an 'old' laptop with W98, for live-performance purposes, and so far, it all functions properly.

This is one of the advantages of using a module tracker only as it was meant : a sample-based editor.
The efficiency of this concept proves to be very high in this way. FastTracker II on a Dos-machine was able to produce almost cd-quality.

So it's not so much about the system requirements, but about your own requirements.
It's easy to advice, to look for the fastest and biggest system available, but that's not my style.
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Offline Matt Hartman

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« Reply #5 on: May 04, 2006, 15:09:42 »
Quote
This is one of the advantages of using a module tracker only as it was meant : a sample-based editor.
The efficiency of this concept proves to be very high in this way. FastTracker II on a Dos-machine was able to produce almost cd-quality


Sam,

I'm not entirely sure there was a set intent in the designing of the tracker , other than the tools and technology that were available at the time.

I strongly beleive (because almost every tracker now offers it) that had Steinberg had the VST/VSTi technology available at the time the tracker was being developed, the programmer would have considered coding for the plug-in from the onset.

I don't think the tracker was meant to be a bare bones tool. I think it began that way because of the dictates and practices of technology of the day.

Most people don't set goals for half success.

Having said all this, VST technology is absolutely great. According to your preference, there are some really amazing and useful plug-ins.

If you haven't invested any time to experiment with them, I strongly recommend it.

In fact, just 1 year ago, I rarely touched VST instruments. I even built a very extensive .IT instrument library which a lot of the instruments from it are circulating around the web.

However, now, because of the obvious advantages, I can't live without great VSTi. Keeping in mind some are more desirable than others.

Allow me to break it down:

With a sample, you have what you have. A sampled .wav of a synth or instrument.

With a VST instrument (VSTi) you can have a complete real time synth. Besides the obvious increase in use and control, the sound quality tends to be significantly better.

Some plug-ins feature multi-layered sampled instruments coupled with sound filtering control for complete variation and precise control/modulation, such as SampleTank.

To the main questioner:

In order to make use of this technology in the tracker, you will need a pretty beefy machine. Some plug ins really soak up your CPU and can bring your machine to a complete crawl.

I've experienced this on occasion on my P4 2.4 GHz, 500 Front side bus,  running 256 video and 512 ram.

I also do recommend using ASIO drivers. It can mean the difference of a very stuttering playback and a smooth playback when using CPU intensive plug-ins.

Anyone running a Xeon? Curious.

Please, no antiPentium hate mail. As long as a processor doesn't burn out, it's useful in my opinion, regardless of what label it carries.
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Offline Sam_Zen

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« Reply #6 on: May 04, 2006, 23:56:35 »
Matt,
Good arguments about the plugins and the introduction of them in the trackers.
Besides that I have a plain reason for not using them, you mentioned it, the power taken from the processor.
I have to make my compo's on a 640 MHz clocked W2K machine, I tested vst's, noticed stutters and made the
logical decision not to use them.

This lead to the conclusion that I have to focus more on the samples themselves. And regarding the fact that a sample doesn't have to be a recording of a single note of a single instrument all the time.
A sample can have 3 instruments plus a voice at the same time, or a sequence of 6 notes by some instrument.
Or a complete rhythmic pattern played by a drummer and the base-guitar.
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Offline xaimus

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« Reply #7 on: May 05, 2006, 01:08:07 »
Liberal use of VSTs will certainly sap away CPU power.  I cannot play most of my current personal projects in realtime, because my Athlon XP 3200+ (1 GiB RAM) cannot quickly process some of the rather ugly/insane effect chains I use.

Quote from: "Sam_Zen"
This lead to the conclusion that I have to focus more on the samples themselves. And regarding the fact that a sample doesn't have to be a recording of a single note of a single instrument all the time.
A sample can have 3 instruments plus a voice at the same time, or a sequence of 6 notes by some instrument.
Or a complete rhythmic pattern played by a drummer and the base-guitar.

Yeah.  This is something I'm starting to do more and more--I render one section to a sample, and include it in the main mix.  It eats a lot of space, but does save CPU time.

Offline Matt Hartman

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« Reply #8 on: May 05, 2006, 17:38:22 »
Quote from: "Sam_Zen"
I have to make my compo's on a 640 MHz clocked W2K machine, I tested vst's, noticed stutters and made the
logical decision not to use them.


All due respect my friend,

But I think it's high time you invest in something more substantial if you are serious about your art.

Take a second job if you have to just long enough to afford something better.

640 MHz is bad news considering today's musical technology. I'm sure I'm not saying anything you don't already realize.

But because your machine is under par according to today's standards, you are truly missing out on some great technological advancements in music.

You really owe it to yourself to find a way to make it happen. I can certainly understand when times get tough in the money area, but there always seems to be a way if you look hard enough and are willing to put the effort into it.

You really can't go wrong with this type of investment.

Don't let circumstance control your life. You can choose to take full control over it and have your cake too.

Edit: Also, try using ASIO drivers (free/google search)
Even on a slow machine you may notice a considerable difference in playback. Even in your non plug-in material.
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Offline Squirrel Havoc

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« Reply #9 on: May 05, 2006, 19:54:28 »
One thing I noticed about VSTi is that is always sounds synthetic. The advantage of XI instruments is they are usually live recordings of the instrument, and they are easier to work with
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Offline habys

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« Reply #10 on: May 06, 2006, 00:13:04 »
sam_zen's argument is pretty keen to me, vst instruments can be very cool if you are into that sort of thing, but the only deciding factor is what your style is. i personally miss the adlib synth that came with scream tracker. there is nothing more substantial to me than lean and mean. besides, arguing about personal preferences is teh pointless. go tell a painter to buy photoshop or go back in time and tell buddy rich he should have invested in some $500 AXIS drum pedals if he really wanted to be serious ;-)
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Offline Matt Hartman

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« Reply #11 on: May 06, 2006, 00:31:44 »
Squirrel & habys:

When speaking in terms of VSTi, style or preference are a void argument because I can honestly assure you there's at least one VSTi plug in that would suit everyone taste.

They're not all synths. Some are complete packages containing very comprehensive multisamples with velocity control of real instruments, additionally adding real time modulation controls that marvel closely to the real thing.

You can hear a great example of what I'm saying by my latest release,
1873. I used Sampletank with a Steinway Grand piano patch. You'll be able to recognize that this obviously has several advantages as far as sound quality and expression.

As for the argument of telling a painter to get photoshop, I don't follow that logic. A painter and a graphic designer are totally different occupations, requiring a completely different set of tools.

In this case, because we are talking about a digital composer getting better tools to create more comprehensive digital music, it's far more relative and valid in my opinion.

In fact, since Sam seems to be an avid lover of Jazz, I have a couple VSTi plug-ins that would probably blow his socks off, it would probably take him an hour to calm down and decide what to do with it.

Synth technology is not an exact science, but I grant you this; give it a few more years and even seasoned musicians will have a hard time determining whether what they are hearing is "real" or "fake". It's already very close and some plug-ins are already there.

You all may want to be a part of that. It's your choice.
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Offline Sam_Zen

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« Reply #12 on: May 06, 2006, 02:11:19 »
I obviously hit a nerve here.

Quote from: "xaimus"
It eats a lot of space, but does save CPU time.

It shouldn't eat significantly more space, because 3 seconds of sound is 3 seconds, with one or with 15 instruments.

Quote from: "Matt Hartman"
it's high time you invest in something more substantial if you are serious about your art.
.. you are truly missing out on some great technological advancements in music.

I'm very serious about my art, so that's why I monitor the developments, related to the things I want to achieve.
As soon as I reach the point, where all functions I want to control, run smoothly, regarding my goals about
construction, expression and quality, why should I strive for better, higher, faster etc. ?
Besides that, I have always found it a challenge, from the beginning with microprocessors, to find the way to get the max out of very little. A matter of finetuning. Efficiency, logic.
If you have a set like mine, it would be very stupid to have several extra unrelated processes running in the background from the taskbar at the same time, with their own interrupt sequences, while playing or editing a sound-file. It's asking for trouble. A stream of calculations is going on, so the system should be as relaxed as possible.

2 habys
It's not a matter of style, but of choosing your own toolkit.

2 Squirrel Havoc
Nice point about the xi-format. I must admit that I neglected it so far, but I will study it now.

Quote from: "Matt Hartman"
A painter and a graphic designer are totally different occupations, requiring a completely different set of tools.

You're right. That's why I question 'electronic music' still belonging to 'music' in the classical way.
On the other hand, the differences in doing the work are not as big as they seem.
Some functions are automated, but other fields are added to the workshop : the resolution for example.
As with images, sound can be edited on a very fine scale, never possible before. I call this the nano-field.
Quote from: "Matt Hartman"
will have a hard time determining whether what they are hearing is "real" or "fake"

This is more a matter of : is the quality of the suggestion good enough to fool the average listener.
I never cared about "real" or "fake" (unless intended), because I'm not busy with imitating existing acoustical instruments in the first place. I just use some sound samples and try to make the best of it.
How many human related instruments exist ? Maybe 4000. With electronics, this is a very minor part of the 9 million possibilities. So it would be a waste to ignore, or not to explore.
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Offline Matt Hartman

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« Reply #13 on: May 06, 2006, 03:15:46 »
There are no nerves hit here. I'm just honest to the point that a lot of people have trouble distinguishing between blunt honesty and insensitivity.

I a nice guy (see:  :P  ) and don't intend to step on anyone's nature or their choices and opinions.

Yet, at the same time, I lack some patience and tend to be very opinionated myself. Literally, I spent most of my adolescence in practically complete silence. I guess my outwardly approach has been a product of storing all my thoughts up without giving myself an outlet to relate my views to others.

I'm almost 33 now, I'm getting older and I'm beginning to see reasoning's that are generally accepted as legit but really make real awful sense when digging into it a little bit further. I see these pitfalls for myself and with others.

Is it my job to correct these observations? Only for myself. As far as others, I take it upon myself to bring them to light without their consent.

It's to be expected in a format setting such as this message board. Besides, I enjoy stimulating and thought inducing discussion. Sometimes, I like to hear myself speak but I think I do it rather well. This doesn't mean I'm full of myself. There is a difference.

Because this is a message board and I'm not holding a gun to anyone's head, I figure either people will agree and take a second look or they'll simply not agree and disregard. All is well.

Sam, if you are comfortable with the way you do things concerning your art then I'm totally in accordance with your views for yourself at the end of the day. You know you the best. Hopefully.  :wink:

I guess I mainly wanted to inform you that there is some great technology out there that's really worth the look. There's so much of it now that you're bound to find some of it quite useful and simplistic. I beleive despite the fact that you seem pretty well settled into your musical cubby, there yonder spans a whole new world of experimentation out there waiting for you, ripe for the picking. That is, if you are so inclined.

Most importantly, when I speak I talk in very general terms. I don't assume to know anyone on a personal level. I do assume that we all operate the same on a very basic human level.
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Offline georg

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« Reply #14 on: May 06, 2006, 12:14:26 »
I'd like to quickly throw in that i've nearly completely stopped tracking because i don't have the equipment that can make my wishes and ideas a reality.

I wasn't picky in the beggining and i've done a lot of work with samples alone, usually recording them as i go along and passing them through filters or effects. Rarely have i used more than 3-4 plugins in a song. And while is still belive that sample-driven music can be beautifull my own feeling towards the music i want to make have changed.

With the exception of the specialised OVC or the occasiaonal OHC i find it difficult and unappealing to even try to make music without tweikng, polishing and perfecting it with the use of VSTs/VSTis. Sample by sample, sound by sound, everything must be analy perfectified, and of course it must also come out of a "sweeeet" pair of headphones otherwise where's the beauty? Or the fun? I can't imagine making a piece of music without mastering it. Tho my skills at that are not l33t, i'm still the first demanding audience member i have to please.

Maybe someday i will refuse to play the game without hardware toys, but for now the software can do wonders. All this software does require a strong machine, perhaps even stronger than a gaming machine, and of course nice phones or speakers to complete the picture.

np - Abba - Money, money, money
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Update - 2013 I still havent made sword-chuks.
Update - 2021 What the hell are sword-chuks? :((