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Scan Laptop with Killer Nic. Should I worry ?

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Scan Laptop with Killer Nic. Should I worry ?

Postby 2pods » Sat Nov 16, 2019 2:47 pm

After receiving my Scan 3XS 17" performance music production with Thunderbolt (a bit of a mouthful) laptop, I'm well pleased.
However, correctly assuming I would use my own interface the onboard SoundBlaster was disabled (possibly as part of the audio tweaks I was told had been performed ? I wonder what the rest are ?). To check out the speakers I re-enabled it and noticed when playing back FLACs at about 70% volume there was distortion. Hmm.

Then while checking out the Windows Music forum here I ran across Richard saying :

Yeah, the Killer NICs are notorious for it and some of our range arrive with them from factory, so I end up switching them out for more suitable solutions too.

The Killer is a faster card when it comes to server response latency which is important if you're playing FPS games online. It does this by getting very aggressive with it's server communication, which in turn eats up extra CPU cycles and is given priority over just about everything so audio applications then get left behind.

Still, it's a gaming card and the XPS is a gaming range at heart, so James raises a fair point in that other none XPS models may have more sanity sparing solutions.

I have a Killer nic onboard. Should this be on a music production machine, and how will it effect me ?

I'm NOT having a go at Scan, as pretty much all my machines, as well as audio stuff have been purchased from them over the years :thumbup: and they did get back to me telling me to go ahead installing my DAW (Cubase 10) as it would be OK, but how does it square with the above advice ?

Thanks
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Re: Scan Laptop with Killer Nic. Should I worry ?

Postby Pete Kaine » Mon Nov 18, 2019 2:09 pm

2pods wrote:Then while checking out the Windows Music forum here I ran across Richard saying :

The quote above was me in fact. Yes, support pulled me about this on Friday and it shows there is an exception to every rule.

The model you took we have a new batch and they look to have switched back in the default Killer in this instance at shell factory and we'll need to raise that. You did buy it as an audio model through and that means it has be tweaked and tested accordenly before it ships from here when we add the rest of the parts.

The problems we see with Killernics is that they tend to tip the DPC levels over more often than not, which is why they prove unsuitable. However, we also DPC test everything that leaves here and you'll have that result in your testing results folder showing that it's passed those.

Either they've gone and fixed the driver finally, or it's just not a problem in that hardware combination which is possible although just more effort that it's worth doing normally. We can look to switch it out to the Intel if you prefer but the reason it didn't get flagged to me prior to shipping, is that things don't get reported to me unless it's failed testing for some reason.
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Re: Scan Laptop with Killer Nic. Should I worry ?

Postby 2pods » Mon Nov 18, 2019 2:37 pm

Thanks for contacting me Pete. I was already a bit edgy with, as I'd said to support, when playing FLACs through the SoundBlaster via the laptop's speakers they're distorting. I didn't get an answer to that. Then I noticed almost permanent disk activity which had got me thinking.

I wish Scan had a forum.

Not sure what to do. If you want to take it to email, or PM I can send you my details, if that's appropriate ? As I know we're both "off duty" here :lol:
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Re: Scan Laptop with Killer Nic. Should I worry ?

Postby 2pods » Mon Nov 18, 2019 2:38 pm

P.S.

Sorry for the mistaken identity :headbang:
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Re: Scan Laptop with Killer Nic. Should I worry ?

Postby Pete Kaine » Mon Nov 18, 2019 4:16 pm

2pods wrote:Thanks for contacting me Pete. I was already a bit edgy with, as I'd said to support, when playing FLACs through the SoundBlaster via the laptop's speakers they're distorting. I didn't get an answer to that. Then I noticed almost permanent disk activity which had got me thinking.

DPC itself shouldn't impact media player files playing back unless the CPU is really overloading, although I can't explain that off-hand without a bit more info.

2pods wrote:I wish Scan had a forum.

We did for a time, but it wasn't all that easy to find and I think it disappeared during the last site reskin, meaning it's possibly buried under 30ft of CSS code by this point,

2pods wrote:Not sure what to do. If you want to take it to email, or PM I can send you my details, if that's appropriate ? As I know we're both "off duty" here :lol:

Sure, see your PM's wth some questions so we can gather a baseline, just shoot me an e-mail back as and when.
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Re: Scan Laptop with Killer Nic. Should I worry ?

Postby 2pods » Mon Nov 18, 2019 4:23 pm

Thanks.
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Re: Scan Laptop with Killer Nic. Should I worry ?

Postby 2pods » Tue Nov 19, 2019 5:07 pm

All sorted with Pete's help.
Machine passed with flying colours, and thankfully no 2pods were hurt during the making of this kerfuffle ;)
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Re: Scan Laptop with Killer Nic. Should I worry ?

Postby blinddrew » Tue Nov 19, 2019 11:07 pm

:thumbup:
At some point I am going to have to look at replacing my machine, I'm struggling to find any reason not to go with Scan when that happens.
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Re: Scan Laptop with Killer Nic. Should I worry ?

Postby Martin Walker » Wed Nov 20, 2019 6:44 pm

blinddrew wrote::thumbup:
At some point I am going to have to look at replacing my machine, I'm struggling to find any reason not to go with Scan when that happens.

A very wise decision methinks - it takes a lot of time to keep up with all the latest PC developments, and in particular all the jiggery-pokery that can exist between Windows 10 and audio.


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Re: Scan Laptop with Killer Nic. Should I worry ?

Postby Pete Kaine » Thu Nov 21, 2019 1:15 pm

Martin Walker wrote:it takes a lot of time to keep up with all the latest PC developments, and in particular all the jiggery-pokery that can exist between Windows 10 and audio.

Given my own build team proving me wrong, I think this thread has illustrated that point fairly well! :lol:
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Re: Scan Laptop with Killer Nic. Should I worry ?

Postby 2pods » Thu Nov 21, 2019 1:28 pm

What have I started ? :lol:
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Re: Scan Laptop with Killer Nic. Should I worry ?

Postby Mixedup » Thu Nov 21, 2019 1:39 pm

blinddrew wrote::thumbup:
At some point I am going to have to look at replacing my machine, I'm struggling to find any reason not to go with Scan when that happens.

I've just had them build me a 3XS Custom machine. I've built a few of my own machines over the years but I'd thoroughly recommend this. My only real criticism is that the thing is so bloody neatly constructed that the extra drive I put in myself sticks out like a sore thumb :lol:

Seriously, it's working well and deathly quiet too. :thumbup:

(thanks Pete, for your advice...)
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