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RAM Vs CPU

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RAM Vs CPU

Postby pa28 » Thu Jul 05, 2018 9:33 pm

I have an issue choosing 64/32 bit for my projects. Problem is, using Cubase 8.5 Pro 64bit, means high CPU, & 32bit means approx 75% of my RAM (16gb) cannot be used.

I believe it is possible to utilise RAM as a fast access "HDD". would this mean I could "cheat" the 4gb limit using 32bit, and or take the CPU load down using 64bit.
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Re: RAM Vs CPU

Postby desmond » Thu Jul 05, 2018 9:49 pm

There's no reason that running a 64-bit app should require more CPU than a 32-bit app...

If anything, the 64-bit app is likely to be a bit more efficient in CPU tasks.

Just because the 64-bit app can address more RAM does not mean it slows down - it doesn't work like that.
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Re: RAM Vs CPU

Postby pa28 » Thu Jul 05, 2018 9:59 pm

Unfortunately using 64bit does increase cpu load for me, I believe I am not the only one this happens to. As soon as I load a 64bit project I have to increase buffers to the best latency I can work with.
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Re: RAM Vs CPU

Postby Agharta » Thu Jul 05, 2018 10:26 pm

pa28 wrote:I believe it is possible to utilise RAM as a fast access "HDD". would this mean I could "cheat" the 4gb limit using 32bit, and or take the CPU load down using 64bit.
You may be referring to a RAM drive which I don't think will have any bearing on your situation.
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Re: RAM Vs CPU

Postby ef37a » Fri Jul 06, 2018 7:46 am

I always thought the 32 bit ram limit was because 2 raised to 32 is a shade under 4G and so that is the limit of a 32 bit system?

I can see it would be "nice" to use the spare 12G but 'what' is going to talk to it?

Mind you, I am an old analogue amp jockey, I am probably talking bllx.

It would however be great to get an expert tell us the symptoms of running out of ram (XP used to tell you!) and how they differ from CPU being thrashed?

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Re: RAM Vs CPU

Postby Pete Kaine » Fri Jul 06, 2018 10:16 am

It falls back upon the swap file (virtual memory), which means the least use data is bounced to the drive.

It has the potential (rare as it is) to eat available streaming bandwidth if your audio/sample drive has the swap file on it, although that's probably the least of your problems.

The real problem is if data that is required for an ASIO buffer cycle to complete is bounced out, then it means that it has to be called back whilst the ASIO buffer cycle is processing. This means you leave yourself open to a massive amount of lag and on a low buffer cycle that could be a disaster akin to releasing a large box of crickets into a recording booth and going for lunch.
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Re: RAM Vs CPU

Postby SafeandSound Mastering » Mon Jul 16, 2018 2:55 pm

I have good experience in Cubase running out of memory. Once I hit around 2.6 - 2.8GB of RAM usage of Cubase 32bit running on W7 I would get a whole host of unpredictable Cubase/Plug in behaviour.

This would include freezes during working..missing plug ins at loading, GUI blank screens, inability to save correctly, inability to even write automation, lost automation, projects freezing at load up.

In short a frustrating nightmare to which I am glad to see the back of. I have 16GB on a pure 64 bit OS and Cubase 9 and run 100 track projects with regularity (home music machine) and it all works very nicely and the CPU is far from new, a 2600 i7.

Most projects of my type (VSTi's, VST effects and processes, samplers, lots of audio tracks, tonnes of automation and complex signal processing chain) end up using 4-6GB of memory so I do not come close to hitting 16GB. I am running a high end set of plug ins that include and just about any VSTi you can name..bit of a soft synth addict in my spare time !)

Running out of CPU usually shows itself as audio drop outs and temporary freeze ups that tend not to be an outright crash. You can easily know where you are by looking at the ASIO meter in Cubase. 40-50pct is my happy place and so I bounce what I need when it suits my creativy and workflow. It is usually a trade off between knowing what you may need to change/modulate/automate and knowing what is likely a more fixed musical offing or something you commit to and bounce.

I persisted for a while but got so tired of it and did a full rebuild of the OS and Install with pure 64 bit and it was the best thing I have ever done. Whilst it is a a bit of a job, taking a full day typically I can vouch for the "ditch and replace" of the 32 bit plugs and move on, I cannot even remember what I lost now. You get over it in a matter of days and just progress. Easily made up by the reliability and smoothness of the DAW.

Good luck, one day the tipping point will come and that is a personal thing in the end.. and once you switch you will never look back.
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