Building Computer Just For Cubase 7

Hey there,

I am an avid Cubase user looking to build a powerful computer just to run Cubase 7 x64 (and obviously all my sample libraries and soft synths). I want to continue sticking to PC just because I am so used to it and have a few options for building a powerful tower but wanted to know if I was missing anything. Currently my projects are between 250 and 280 tracks in total with loads of VST/i’s opened at a time and I am getting CPU/disk cache overloads and everything in between.

My question is this: when choosing a processor, would it be wiser for me to build a tower with two Intel Xeon E5 chips (each 8 cores, totaling 16) or just get one of the Intel Xeon E7 chips (just 10 cores)? The reason I ask is because the newer E7 models are obviously more powerful. I understand I don’t need to be going to these lengths and yes, there are ‘cheaper’ options and, yes, I know Macs exist but I have made up my mind and I’m either going the 2x Intel Xeon Octo-core route or the 1x Intel Xeon E7 Deca-core route. Any ideas?

As for RAM, I’m obviously going 32GB and for HD space I’m thinking 512GB SSD for Cubase 7 x64 and corresponding plugins alongside multiple hard disks (7200rpm) dedicated for read/write sessions & sample libraries.

Any advice would be very helpful!

I don’t have as many tracks, but with recording at 192k, I am finding some plugins (like one quad channel REVerence instance) push the current quad core i920 a bit hard.

I wish that I had got a drop-in replacement 980X sooner, but I suspect that even it would be pushed soon.

I myself have been looking at what to get next. Dual octo-core Xeon E5s in an ASUS or EVGA dual workstation motherboard is looking good, if not rather expensive.

The top Xeon devices are:
a) E5-2687W 8-core at 3.1GHz with turbo 3.8
b) E7-2870 10-core at 2.4GHz with turbo 2.8

The E5s are newer 4th generation devices, less than half the cost of the E7s, with better single and total core performance.

The problem with the Xeons is making sure they stay no more than 65 C, which means the cooling has to be reliable and powerful.

For some comparisons, see:
http://cpuboss.com/cpus/Intel-Xeon-E7-2870-vs-Intel-Xeon-E5-2687W
http://www.cpu-world.com/Compare/108/Intel_Xeon_E5-2687W_vs_Intel_Xeon_E7-2870.html

The risk is whether Cubase and plugins work reliably and utilise all cores. Does anyone know about this aspect?

Hey F,

I dont know if you ever spend time at the Gearslutz forum but there are some knowledgeable folks there. You could look up Scott’s posts from ADK.

http://www.adkproaudio.com/

Not long ago I had to upgrade my machine when I migrated to Cubase 7 and what I read in the posts helped a lot. I have rock solid system. His screen name is: jcschild The guy knows his stuff and it might be helpful.

Cheers!

I agree that Scott (ADK) knows his stuff.

I think the top end Haswell has -6- cores. It gets good reviews from gamers both in terms of speed and thermals… (O/C to 5ghz!)

I built mine almost a year ago…have not had any Cubase issues other than some of the updates… I have Lots of NI, Waves and other VST’s along with my outboard gear tied into via External Instruments.

That said, you can build a more powerful one or add more ram but my whole premise in building workstations for over 1o years is to leave room for future expansion.