Question about CHIPSETS

In trying to help the OP, I am pretty sure I implied the same things.


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Hmm but we see lots of post from people with blazingly fast computers that suffer from cpu spikes, pops and clicks etc. So ok it may not be the chipset but what is the main cause? Also we see it even more for laptops. I prefer to be safe than sorry and end up like a lot do struggling to get clean reliable audio.

I’ve never had these problems right back to my first pc in the 90s. Lucky at first but then I’ve always followed the audio pc manufacturers specs.

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First, I’m SO sorry if I sounded annoyed! I responded in haste and poorly communicated my message.
I’m not annoyed at all, but still amazed that this subject is now over 28 pages long, where the short answer could have been like “You have 100 things to pay attention to, before you need to worry about the chipset in 2022.”

I realize this commotion originates from real issues of a few (many) years back that are still echoed in a recent post from Steinberg.
That’s a bit sad, and why I asked in my previous post that they remove or rephrase that short section of it.
.

It’s a great video.
I LOVE his little animations showing how the buffers get filled, etc.
The concepts explained are completely relevant. He cut a few corners in the explanations, but I could not have done better in this short video… I’m not a great teacher and probably would rant for 4 hours about interrupt handling, scheduling, task priorities, RTOS, QOS, etc… trying to be more exact than this short overview of the issue.

Where it does need a few precisions is when discussing the causes. He takes about the “devices” being the culprits, when except rare exceptions (SSD vs HDD), it’s more exactly the drivers or other pieces of software that cause real-time glitches (the HW itself is fine). His proposed solutions however quickly come back in the right track when he talks about updating the drivers, etc.

One missing elephant in the room is discussing the numerous (and often useless) background tasks that cause real-time glitches.
For example, I’ve seen people complaining on CPU performance while they only needed to remove the “news feed” application they had opened in another screen…
Open “Task Manager” and check the “Startup” tab… you could probably disable half of those “goodies” and fix many problems.
That’s also why many DAW users (me included!) recommend to install only the GPU drivers, but not the complete suite of tools that come with your card.

You can also use Task Manager to change (lower) the priorities of some resource huggers… but that I cannot explain without adding another 20 pages to this thread… :wink:

I should (and maybe will one day…) sit down for a day to better structure my thoughts/recommendations for DAW users shopping for a PC to be more useful… But this too-long post gives you a hint that I have a hard time remaining concise…

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I’ve been building PC workstations professionally for almost 30 years. The notion of needing to carefully chose a mainboard chipset is antiquated.

Way back in the 90s there were precious few standards (compared to now), there were several third party mainboard chipsets around, USB did not exist and so on. If you had any audio interface other than the proverbial Sound Blaster 16, it meant a proprietary ISA (or later, PCI) card (feeding an external box for multichannel setups). Thats where the whole chipset concern stems from.

Fast forward to today, all but the highest end studio equipment is either USB or the odd Thunderbolt. The only two players in the chipset game are Intel (for intel processors) and AMD (for AMD processors), and within each of those, the differences are all about capacity (number of PCIe lanes etc), overclocking options, amount of included ports etc. As long as the mainboard you chose has the features you want, and supports the CPU you are after, you’ll be good to go.

The only time chipset still comes up is when looking at adding port cards. For example if you have a Firewire audio interface and your PC doesnt have FW, you can add a FW card….and THOSE have a chipset which can range from decent (like TexasInstuments) to abysmal (stuff you’ve never heard of).

Back to the OP:
Your sound card/interface is the MAudio. You’ll end up either ignoring, or even disabling, any on board audio you mainboard has. As long as the USB port you plug it into is off of the mainboard chipset (Intel or AMD), you’ll be fine.

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The BIG difference was that back then we did not have dozens of background tasks eating resources. Your computer was doing 1 thing at a time with highly efficient software, often optimized in assembly language.
Today’s virus scan tools running in the background would already be too demanding for our 90s PC, even if it was the only thing running.
Like I suggested above, open Task Manager and take a look at everything running in the background.

Sadly, poorly written software is also often the culprit…

I was happily running Cakewalk in 1988, without glitches…

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Amen!

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Thank you Y-D.
That was a most helpful reply :wink:

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Again, Thank you to EVERYONE for posting very helpful replies.
I have learned so much from all your discussions :slight_smile:
As with ALL threads, they get read by so many more people (over the years).
So I am sure all this info helps others too :slight_smile:

See CPU vs. ASIO Performance: Why is the performance meter maxed, but CPU not? - #16 by GlennO

First of all thank you for your warmhearted reply!

I share your frustration, that there’s a lot of outdated information still floating around not only with Steinberg, but almost wherever you look. – I assign a very large portion of blame to Google for it’s search results offering up ancient articles and posts unless you specifically force it to restrict the search results to more recent time frames. And even then the algorithm is easily confused and/or gamed by the SEO techniques of content mills. Google contributes to the misinformation in a big way.

haha - that would make a great article headline or video title! (Even better if the 100 things figure of speech, would end up a real number of things listed in the body of the article).

Thanks again for posting!

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The CPU I’m aiming for is the Ryzen 5800X, which (according to loads of forums online) runs quite hot, and even though AMD says its fine, others are advising you can easily reduce the temp by decreasing the PPT, TDC and EDC in the BIOS.

Does this sound like an ok approach to deal with this situation? or is it silly of me to be buying a CPU which knowingly runs hot ?

Short answers to your two questions are: no and yes, in that order.

Running hot is not a big issue per se, but it usually means the fans are running faster/noisier to get that heat out.

If running cool/quiet is valuable to your setup (ex. the PC will be in the same room your record in), then go for the Alder lake, or if you can wait a few more months, the Raptor lake. A lot of the lower-end workloads can be run largely on the e-cores (like recording a vocal track, if done carefully), and could even be fanless then.

But this is a whole new debate with the potential to add another 20 pages to this thread… :wink:

it seems like the AMD’s run hot, but are better value for money.
I think i’m mostly wondering if I did go the AMD route and slightly reduced the PPT, TDC & EDC in Bios, could the reduced power to the CPU interfere with the way the CPU co-ordinates with Cubase?
I wouldn’t want to cause drop-outs, pops, glitches in recording due to BIOS cpu power reduction.

I myself reduced the voltage by 130 mV on my Intel and there’s no issue at all. Apart from lowering the temp by 10°C and power consumption by almost 30 W, the system runs exactly the same. Just run some heavy benchmark like OCCT and test it. If the PC crashes increase the voltage a little. If a core runs into an error and the test stops, that’s not a big deal, you just don’t want the entire CPU to shut down under load.

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I’m willing to bet it’s the opposite at the moment. That Intel tends to run hotter and that they are better value - arguably.

As I wrote elsewhere - I wouldn’t even bother. Like Y-D wrote you just need a good cooling solution. Then you’re good to go.

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You can still buy motherboards that you should avoid. Not too many, but there are still some available.
It also depends on the drivers of the vendors.

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I think what Y-D was saying was that even though that’s the case it usually won’t be about the chipset but about other things.

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drivers and firmware!

Agreed. I think people (myself included ) got into the whole motherboard/solution problem and not just chipset

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Last time I build a PC(maybe 2 years ago) I had to change the WIFI card, otherwise there were random spikes in the audio because of a lousy driver.
If it’s a desktop, it’s easy to swap hardware until it works properly.

But I have had expensive Windows laptops from customers that were unsuitable for DAW work, even with optimised drivers and unnecesary hard- and software switched off.