Average Peak Load PEGGED. System spec discussion?

Hi there my audio friends,

So today, (and a lot lately) I’ve been having some trouble using my mobile unit (my laptop plus my BabyFace Pro) with AVERAGE PEAK loads maxing out and causing the project to halt. On my main machine, these projects play without it even flinching. And I’m just asking myself, why the hell is there such a difference. I’m going to list the specs of BOTH machines and I’d love it if any and all could chime in and let me know if my laptop simply can’t handle the stuff my desktop can.

I clearly know that my desktop is far more powerful, but the kind of projects I’m throwing at my laptop are REALLY not what I’d call demanding.

Here are my two machines:
Dell XPS Laptop:
Processor: Intel(R) Core™ i7-7700HQ CPU @ 2.80GHz 2.80 GHz
RAM: 16.0 GB
Windows 20H2
Cubase 11
ESET Smart Security

PC Desktop
Processor: Intel 8th Gen Core i7-8700 (6 Cores/12 Threads) 3.2GHz
RAM: 32.0 GB
Windows 20H2
Cubase 11
ESET Smart Security

All the normal modifications for audio have been applied to windows on both machines, ie;
Power Options (never sleep mode, USB selective suspend DISABLED, minimum processor state at 100, USB Power to Allow computer to turn off USB ports to save power, OFF)
Disk options: Compress this drive to save disk space ” and “ Allow files on this drive to have contents indexed ” are unchecked.
Both machines drivers are 100% up to date.

Am I just looking at a limitation of the machine with the laptop compared to the desktop?

I must specify this is happening on almost ALL of my projects - I’m a mixing engineer primarily so I do tend to throw a lot at it, but I feel like NOT ENOUGH to make a 16gb 2.8ghz i7 flip out.

I’m willing to throw some $$ at the laptop (maybe in RAM?) but beyond that, I’d simply look for a new machine.

Laptops are definitely more problematic. That’s why I would only get one which was built for audio or tested to work with audio. For instance in the UK there are companies like SCAN.

Back to the problem. Do you have the option to use a different USB port? Is the bios up to date? Have you tried latency mon to see if there is a bottleneck? What buffer size are you using?

Yeah I know they are. :frowning:
BIOS definitely up to date.
Haven’t tried latency mon - is this a specific program or app I can download somewhere?
1024 buffer size always, unless I’m tracking MIDI in which case I switch on the fly as needed.
Hmm. I can try the USB port on the other side (via USB-C).

I had a Dell laptop that I only used to stream audio & video to my TV & stereo, so nothing very resource hungry. But it was always deciding to run things in the background that consumed a lot of resources (like the disk use suddenly jumps from 4% to 100% and stays there for 10 minutes).

When this is happening you could use Task Manager to see what is consuming various resources - while it might be Cubase it could be something else entirely.

Agree. Companies like Dell sure like to load a bunch of extra junk onto their machines. A laptop (or even regular PC) that is built for audio generally only comes with what you really need.

Just put in google latency mon and it will turn up, it’s a program.