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  1. #1

    Default OT new computer prep for SAW/SAC

    News of the upcoming 64 bit version of SAW has caused me to bulldoze my 4+ year old studio computer. So begins my walk down the garden path. Losing XP means losing my favorite "mondo desktop" trick where I could have a 2048x1536 desktop windowed in a 1280x1024 screen. I needed a much bigger display screen or multiple screens. The way my rig is laid out dictated the single large screen, so I went for an "ultrawide" 2500+ x 1080 (can't remember the exact horizontal res) screen. Then I discovered that the video card in my old computer could not match the resolution of that display. I would at least need a new video card.

    Off to one of those computer stores that offers refurbished machines, where I got my next surprise. Everything they had available in my price range used proprietary power supplies, which could not be upgraded after the fact, and upgrade that would be demanded by any of the available video cards with the resolution I needed. That, and most of them could not accept a full height interface card (MOTU 424).

    So, I gave in and went to a Best Buy to get a factory-built computer, complete with the usual bloatware and configuration problems, discovering also that a Win7 downgrade is no longer available, so stuck with the dreaded Win10. The good news was that the Lenovo "ideacentre 720-18asu" (Model 90H1000FUS) came with a video card instead of "onboard" video, and the video card is fanless. The only fan in the thing is the cpu fan, and the unit is very quiet.

    So, now to tame the software setup. Here is where I need some guidance. Microsoft offers the option of running a "clean install" of Win10, which wipes out everything on the machine that was not part of the operating system install itself. This apparently means that all of the factory bloatware goes away, but so too do any drivers specific to the machine. My guess is this means I will need to manually install drivers for the mobo chipset and other features, as well as for the video card.

    Which brings me to another caveat: I recently learned from a PC repair guy that he has been getting a lot of business fixing machines that get "broken" by Windows Update. Why? Because the manufacturers of computers sometimes change brands of certain components in the middle of a model year, and MS doesn't know about it, so Windows Update will grab wrong drivers that don't fit what is actually on the machine. This means I absolutely must prepare in advance by making sure that I have copies in hand of all the needed drivers BEFORE I run the "clean install".

    What is currently the best free tool for scanning the computer to determine what drivers are needed for everything on it, and what is the best way to acquire/download said drivers before running the OS install?

    Also, how small can I make the C partition and still leave enough room for necessary future "growth" of the OS and core applications?
    If I do a separate partition for audio apps like SAW/SAC, what is a good size for that?
    And, is it save to use a 3rd party tool like Acronis (something free) to shrink the boot partition more than Windows10 itself will do?

    Thanks in advance for any and all sage advice.
    Cary B. Cornett
    aka "Puzzler"
    www.chinesepuzzlerecording.com

  2. #2

    Default Re: OT new computer prep for SAW/SAC

    Im using win 10 on newest computer. Im not having problems other than updates all the time. I usually turn that off, but i didnt on this. I have a bunch of native instruments stuff and UAD Octo, Antelope Zen, SAWSTUDIO, BIAB audiophile. I dont do extreme track count. 24 max. It holds up good. Thank you Bob. May God bless you for doing your 64bit transition. Im going to add a shipload of memory when you are completed to my pc. As far as pc, mine is as follows:
    Win10
    Biostar Tz68A+
    Intel Core I5-2500k cpu quad core @ 3.30ghz
    8gb ram
    Nvidia geforece gt730
    HD: C:\ Seagate Hybrid Drive ST2000DX001 2TB MLC/8GB 64MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s NCQ 3.5" Desktop SSHD
    D:\ Seagate BarraCuda ST31000524AS 1TB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive Bare Drive

    antelope zenstudio, capable of 192khz/ 24bit, no latency ; usually run 96khz and 48 and 44, 24bit

    Cant wait for 64bit SAW, then I can add some more memory. Although I think my board maxes out at 16gig, but what I have read, that is plenty. Again happy new year to all, and may your year be prosperous and enjoyable.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Alberta Canada
    Posts
    42

    Default Re: OT new computer prep for SAW/SAC

    You could upgrade your memory now because I understand the memory limitation is the operating system not the application. Windows 10 is a 64bit operating system.
    Laughing Crow Studios
    Alberta Canada

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Western Australia
    Posts
    303

    Default Re: OT new computer prep for SAW/SAC

    Quote Originally Posted by Danny O View Post
    You could upgrade your memory now because I understand the memory limitation is the operating system not the application. Windows 10 is a 64bit operating system.
    A 32 bit application can only address 4 gig of RAM even when on a computer with any amount of RAM running a 64 bit operating system.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Alberta Canada
    Posts
    42

    Default Re: OT new computer prep for SAW/SAC

    Actually 'ambler' your right...thinking about it, a 32bit application can not generate an address beyond the 4Gig limit but there are ways to maximize the 4Gig space than what the Windows kernel allows. I guess my point was it never hurts to increase you memory if your using a 64bit OS, as other aspects of the OS may run smother.
    Laughing Crow Studios
    Alberta Canada

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Bainbridge Island, WA
    Posts
    2,057

    Default Re: OT new computer prep for SAW/SAC

    Has Bob given any guidance yet re his recommended specs for a computer?
    Currently using:
    T43p Thinkpad w/XP SP3 for FOH, Subs and Front Fill Mixes (20% CPU load);
    T500 Thinkpad w/Win7 SP1 for 6 Monitor Mixes (15% CPU load)
    Running at 2x32
    2 Digifaces, 1 w/CardBus, 1 w/ExpressCard
    3-Octamic-D for mic inputs - using the dual outputs to split the ADAT signal to the Digifaces;
    1-RME ADI-8 Pro for all FOH sends; 1-RME ADI-8 Pro for all Monitor sends;

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Maple Ridge, BC Canada
    Posts
    2,043
    Blog Entries
    1

    Default Re: OT new computer prep for SAW/SAC

    Ira,

    Not that I have seen...but any current systems, I would say, in the last 2-3 years should suffice.

    PS: I do not expect my ASUS Z170-P - which I purchased back in July of 2016, should have any issues with 64-bit SAC or SAW.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    Cambridge, United Kingdom
    Posts
    27

    Default Re: OT new computer prep for SAW/SAC

    I just purchased a new Z370 build with a focus on single core speed (i7 8700K) running Win 10 Pro. I would prefer to stay with Win7, but it doesn't really make sense IMO. My specs are for DAW usage and my main DAWs are Reason and SAWStudio. I have been threatening a move to Reaper, but that hasn't taken hold yet. I just know SAW so well and love the automation principles. I didn't know Bob is porting to 64 bit. I was curious, as well about SAWStudio full pricing verses Lite (I have Lite). I followed the links at the SAW store
    http://www.sawstudio.com/products_sawstudio.htm and the links point to an expired domain

    I'll report back here how my build goes in case anyone can benefit. I should think running SAWStudio Lite on the new machine should be a big improvement over my 2011 VAIO!

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