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Windows 10 DAW used off line .. is it better?
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Author Windows 10 DAW used off line .. is it better?
Rex Coil 7
I'm hoping the mods don't move this, I need this to be in front of as many eyes as possible.

Win10 .. lots of complaints I see. Most seem to be about on line stuff (updates, privacy issues, your programs being deleted during updates, and so on).

So what if you just don't connect your computer to the internet and put your DAW together and leave it off line?

For those of you that do this, how is it working out?

Or are we over being angry at MS about Win 10 now and we just use it like it was Win7?

seriously, i just don't get it
Muzone
I run w10 on my laptop that gets used for general browsing and streaming as well as running my DAW (Reaper), Wavelab and various synth editors - never had a s/w conflict or glitch.
Laptop is a pretty run of the mill i7 2.5 Ghz/8Gb RAM and I'm by no means a 'computer person' - I just turn off WiFi when I'm using music s/w and set performance option to 'high', seems to be fine....

....cue massive system crash d'oh!

Oh I should add, no 'dodgy' websites visited and all s/w is legit and up to date
chvad
I use 7 at home and 10 for my live computer. The live 10 machine has been super stable. Once I set it up, did my updates and such... I pulled it offline and it's been fine. If installing something new I just do whatever updates are available and go off again. It's been great. Just for reference this specific comp is a Lenovo P52 workstation, 6 core i7 /16gigs ram.
Koekepan
In my experience, Win10 has been a pain. Not necessarily because of the core OS (although its unilateral decision-making can be a real annoyance) but because manufacturer drivers don't always keep pace with Microsoft's decisions.

So if nothing you do depends upon a driver, or you don't mind losing external monitor support for a couple of weeks until it sorts itself out (happened to me) I guess rock on.

I wouldn't use it for anything I cared about. So I don't.

It actually really reminds me of trying to make music with an ancient analogue that spends a lot of its life with a repair guy.
hairbow
There is no way to permanently stop updates in Windows 10

However, to temporarily stop them, open command as administrator and type these three lines (press enter after every one):

net stop wuauserv

net stop bits

net stop dosvc

At least one, probably all three are running. Will improve performance. Every now and then do it again. But also - remember to update for security purposes, just do it in controlled settings
Rex Coil 7
Yea, see, here we have the typical situation that I've seen FAR too many times. You get one person that says "it's all good!" .... then one person that says "it's complete shit!".

When you go to Microsoft's own "Buy Windows 10" webpage, and it shows this graph that rates with 1 to 5 stars (5 being best, 1 being worst) and you see this:

***** 29%
**** 12%
*** 6%
** 7%
* 43%

... 43% of actual owners give it ONE BLOODY STAR! On MS's own bloody "BUY" page! It's very discouraging.

LINK = https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/p/windows-10-home/d76qx4bznwk4/1NT3?oc id=AID681541_aff_7593_159229&tduid=(ir__hu6zt10n0sh9sumuyzjdwc91tm2xh3 ic0p3jwnoo00)(7593)(159229)()(UUwpUdUnU42340)&irgwc=1&irclickid=_hu6zt 10n0sh9sumuyzjdwc91tm2xh3ic0p3jwnoo00

I'd have no problem staying with Win7. I'm building an all new DAW computer. The problem is that the motherboard I bought (ASUS Prime Z370-A ... one of THE best on the market) has two of these "M.2 NVME sockets" for using those super cool/SUPER FAST on-board M.2 NVME solid state drives. I really want to use those ... they're at least FIVE TIMES faster than SATA3 SSD drives ... five times! But Win7 doesn't support those types of drives. I've researched it, and it looks like you CAN make Win7 work with those NVME drives but you need to install/insert (or something) the proper drivers within Win7 to make it all work.

I've already bought the damned NVME drives (one 250GB and one 1TB) spending roughly $400 on the pair.

It may also be that the super cooly ASUS motherboard I bought is set up for Win10 as well.

So I'm loving the hardware, but I'm scared to death of the OS required to use the hardware. At least I think I need the Win10 OS to make the hardware work.

This blows chunks.

As far as I know, the only piece of ancillary hardware I've purchased so far that requires a special driver is the audio interface. It's the Behringer U-Phoria USB2 interface (which has rec'd TRUCKLOADS of excellent user reviews for it's stability and low latency). It's just an ASIO driver however. So I'm hoping Win10 wouldn't fuddup a little ol' ASIO driver.

Ugh .... I do not like this situation.

sad banana
Rex Coil 7
hairbow wrote:
There is no way to permanently stop updates in Windows 10

However, to temporarily stop them, open command as administrator and type these three lines (press enter after every one):

net stop wuauserv

net stop bits

net stop dosvc

At least one, probably all three are running. Will improve performance. Every now and then do it again. But also - remember to update for security purposes, just do it in controlled settings
Well that's just it .... if you're not running the Win10 DAW computer connected to the web, why would you need to worry about "updates for security purposes"?

I've got two or three WinXP computers that I've never connected to the internet, they don't even have modems or other means to connect any kind of cable to them for making an internet connection. I did that purposely, to keep them "clean". They're all still operational.

So would that be possible with a Win10 computer/DAW?

I'll be using Ableton Live 9.7.7 Suite.

hmmm.....
rean1mator
I'm running the z-370A with a 1tb nvme drive running and no problems with Windows 10 with no issues at all.

the nvme performance boost is the best upgrade to a system you can do imo. blistering fast. worth every penny.

only one of the m.2 nvme socket on the z370a support full x4 pcie speeds so make sure to put the OS drive on that one and make sure to change it to x4 pcie speed in the bios to utilize the full speed of that socket.

also if you are still considering thunderbolt DO NOT get the ASUS thunderbolt card. Use the gigabyte alpine ridge thunderbolt card with a startech thunderbolt 3 to thunderbolt adapter if you are using a thunderbolt 2 AI.

Rex Coil 7 wrote:
Yea, see, here we have the typical situation that I've seen FAR too many times. You get one person that says "it's all good!" .... then one person that says "it's complete shit!".

When you go to Microsoft's own "Buy Windows 10" webpage, and it shows this graph that rates with 1 to 5 stars (5 being best, 1 being worst) and you see this:

***** 29%
**** 12%
*** 6%
** 7%
* 43%

... 43% of actual owners give it ONE BLOODY STAR! On MS's own bloody "BUY" page! It's very discouraging.

LINK = https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/p/windows-10-home/d76qx4bznwk4/1NT3?oc id=AID681541_aff_7593_159229&tduid=(ir__hu6zt10n0sh9sumuyzjdwc91tm2xh3 ic0p3jwnoo00)(7593)(159229)()(UUwpUdUnU42340)&irgwc=1&irclickid=_hu6zt 10n0sh9sumuyzjdwc91tm2xh3ic0p3jwnoo00

I'd have no problem staying with Win7. I'm building an all new DAW computer. The problem is that the motherboard I bought (ASUS Prime Z370-A ... one of THE best on the market) has two of these "M.2 NVME sockets" for using those super cool/SUPER FAST on-board M.2 NVME solid state drives. I really want to use those ... they're at least FIVE TIMES faster than SATA3 SSD drives ... five times! But Win7 doesn't support those types of drives. I've researched it, and it looks like you CAN make Win7 work with those NVME drives but you need to install/insert (or something) the proper drivers within Win7 to make it all work.

I've already bought the damned NVME drives (one 250GB and one 1TB) spending roughly $400 on the pair.

It may also be that the super cooly ASUS motherboard I bought is set up for Win10 as well.

So I'm loving the hardware, but I'm scared to death of the OS required to use the hardware. At least I think I need the Win10 OS to make the hardware work.

This blows chunks.

As far as I know, the only piece of ancillary hardware I've purchased so far that requires a special driver is the audio interface. It's the Behringer U-Phoria USB2 interface (which has rec'd TRUCKLOADS of excellent user reviews for it's stability and low latency). It's just an ASIO driver however. So I'm hoping Win10 wouldn't fuddup a little ol' ASIO driver.

Ugh .... I do not like this situation.

sad banana
Rex Coil 7
rean1mator wrote:
I'm running the z-370A with a 1tb nvme drive running and no problems with Windows 10 with no issues at all.

the nvme performance boost is the best upgrade to a system you can do imo. blistering fast. worth every penny.

only one of the m.2 nvme socket on the z370a support full x4 pcie speeds so make sure to put the OS drive on that one and make sure to change it to x4 pcie speed in the bios to utilize the full speed of that socket.

also if you are still considering thunderbolt DO NOT get the ASUS thunderbolt card. Use the gigabyte alpine ridge thunderbolt card with a startech thunderbolt 3 to thunderbolt adapter if you are using a thunderbolt 2 AI.
My ASUS Prime Z370-A manual says both M.2 sockets support x4 PCIe ... this is a direct quote out of the PDF manual:

"M.2_1 socket supports PCIe 3.0 x4 and SATA mode M key design and type 2242/2260/2280 PCIe and SATA storage devices.

M.2_2 socket supports PCIe 3.0 x4 M key design and type 2242/2260/2280 PCIe and SATA storage devices."


So M.2 socket #1 handles SATA or PCIe 3.0 x4.

M.2 socket #2 handles PCIe 3.0 x4 only.

The paper manual also says (direct quote):

Chapter 3.6.8
M.2_1 Configuration
(AUTO) Auto-detects the M.2 device mode. If a SATA device is detected, SATA6G_1 will be disabled.

(SATA MODE) Only supports M.2 SATA devices. Please note that SATA6G_1 port cannot be used in this mode.

(PCIE mode) Only supports M.2 PCIE devices.

M.2_2 PCIe Bandwidth Configuration (X2) (X4)

(X2) Run at X2 mode with SATA6G_56 enabled.
(x4) Run at X4 mode for higher performance with SATA6G_56 disabled.



And in the paper manual in the "Specifications summary" (page "x") it says that using both M.2 sockets is fine ... M.2 socket-1 "shares" SATA socket 1 .... and M.2 socket-2 "shares" SATA sockets 5 and 6. I fully expected it to say using those M.2 sockets "disables" those SATA sockets, but it says "shares". Weird. So using both M.2 sockets is fine, and that leaves SATA sockets 2, 3, and 4 open for business. Both M.2 sockets may be used in NVME mode at the same time. M.2 socket #1 is for SATA or PCIe (NVME) ..... M.2 socket #2 is for PCIe (NVME) only. Both M.2 sockets can run at x4 speeds, M.2 socket #1 only runs at those speeds when it is in PCIe mode however.

As far as Thunderbolt goes, I'm going to wait awhile on that. The ASUS T-bolt board is junk (as you'd said) and I think it's prudent to wait a bit for prices of T-bolt capable interfaces to come down a little.

thumbs up
rean1mator
I would check your bios settings to confirm as I was able to get x4 bandwidth on only one of the slots. and/or you could only have one x4 configured on only one socket at a time. it's been a few months but from memory the x4 setting was not even available as a setting in the bios on one of the sockets. it's possible the manual is incorrect?

you can also confirm running any of the benchmark utilitities, which will confirm what you are actually running at on those slots.

and based on this thread:
http://www.tomshardware.com/answers/id-3834621/pci-x16-gtx-1080ti-sing le-card-1440p.html

there aren't many mobo's that can run two m.2 slots at x4 speed simultaneously.

but also, i'm running a super highend gtx 1080 ti which may cannabilize some of the available bandwidth so maybe that was the reason?

no way to tell until you actually check the bios to see you can set both at x4 simultaneously.

also, sata mode can never have pcie x2 or x4 setting because it doesn't use the pcie bus to transfer the data.

Rex Coil 7 wrote:
rean1mator wrote:
I'm running the z-370A with a 1tb nvme drive running and no problems with Windows 10 with no issues at all.

the nvme performance boost is the best upgrade to a system you can do imo. blistering fast. worth every penny.

only one of the m.2 nvme socket on the z370a support full x4 pcie speeds so make sure to put the OS drive on that one and make sure to change it to x4 pcie speed in the bios to utilize the full speed of that socket.

also if you are still considering thunderbolt DO NOT get the ASUS thunderbolt card. Use the gigabyte alpine ridge thunderbolt card with a startech thunderbolt 3 to thunderbolt adapter if you are using a thunderbolt 2 AI.
My ASUS Prime Z370-A manual says both M.2 sockets support x4 PCIe ... this is a direct quote out of the PDF manual:

"M.2_1 socket supports PCIe 3.0 x4 and SATA mode M key design and type 2242/2260/2280 PCIe and SATA storage devices.

M.2_2 socket supports PCIe 3.0 x4 M key design and type 2242/2260/2280 PCIe and SATA storage devices."


So M.2 socket #1 handles SATA or PCIe 3.0 x4.

M.2 socket #2 handles PCIe 3.0 x4 only.

The paper manual also says (direct quote):

Chapter 3.6.8
M.2_1 Configuration
(AUTO) Auto-detects the M.2 device mode. If a SATA device is detected, SATA6G_1 will be disabled.

(SATA MODE) Only supports M.2 SATA devices. Please note that SATA6G_1 port cannot be used in this mode.

(PCIE mode) Only supports M.2 PCIE devices.

M.2_2 PCIe Bandwidth Configuration (X2) (X4)

(X2) Run at X2 mode with SATA6G_56 enabled.
(x4) Run at X4 mode for higher performance with SATA6G_56 disabled.



And in the paper manual in the "Specifications summary" (page "x") it says that using both M.2 sockets is fine ... M.2 socket-1 "shares" SATA socket 1 .... and M.2 socket-2 "shares" SATA sockets 5 and 6. I fully expected it to say using those M.2 sockets "disables" those SATA sockets, but it says "shares". Weird. So using both M.2 sockets is fine, and that leaves SATA sockets 2, 3, and 4 open for business. Both M.2 sockets may be used in NVME mode at the same time. M.2 socket #1 is for SATA or PCIe (NVME) ..... M.2 socket #2 is for PCIe (NVME) only. Both M.2 sockets can run at x4 speeds, M.2 socket #1 only runs at those speeds when it is in PCIe mode however.

As far as Thunderbolt goes, I'm going to wait awhile on that. The ASUS T-bolt board is junk (as you'd said) and I think it's prudent to wait a bit for prices of T-bolt capable interfaces to come down a little.

thumbs up
JohnLRice
If you are willing to occasionally connect to the internet for updates and product registration and have antivirus installed etc then you probably wont run into problems? It's getting harder and harder to stay off-line though. sad banana

I keep my DAW off line completely (running Windows 8.1) and the main issue is third party apps that MUST connect to the internet, either once or occasionally to "update the app" (more likely to verify you aren't using a stolen version and rape your hard drive for valuable marketing info IMHO meh hihi ).

When Sony owned the Vegas line of video editing apps you could register using a separate computer if your NLE computer (Non Linear Editor - video equivalent of a DAW) wasn't online. When the Vegas products were sold off to Magix I happily updated to the newest version when it came out but quickly discovered I have to connect to the internet not once but once per month to keep it working. That's a big nope, I don't want to run antivirus/antimalware/network services etc on my DAW, or constantly be enabling/disabling stuff or hassling with multi boot setups etc so I go my money back.

If you want to stay completely off line these days make sure before you buy any software that you verify that you can run it off line and register via a different computer that is online.
RickKleffel
When I first saw the subject line, I could not parse it correctly, and thought it was some sort of contest to win one of 10 DAWs someone was giving away. When I looked and sussed what the what was, I was grateful to have been way from the M$world for so long. Back when some of yez were waiting for your HS diploma, I was toiling in the proto IT mines. These days, I thank my lucky stars for the latest Mac mini ...

Back to the mines, folks!
chvad
" So would that be possible with a Win10 computer/DAW? "

yes. once your activated your fine. i've never been prompted by my offline win10 machine to go online for any reason.

computers are computers and OS's are OS's. There is nothing inherently broken in Win 10 to scare away from. That being said.. I have a Win 7 machine for most of my work because I haven't had any reason to update that machine. 7 is fine. 10 is fine. People get work done on these daily. I wouldn't sweat it too hard man. I haven't had in the past year on the Win10 laptop a single crash. Not in weekly rehearsals using a ton of vst's not in life shows. If it had I'd tell ya as much. It just hasn't. But I don't have problems on 7 either nor do I on my work macs for the most part. sometimes a hiccup but nothing more than that.
Rex Coil 7
rean1mator wrote:
I would check your bios settings to confirm as I was able to get x4 bandwidth on only one of the slots. and/or you could only have one x4 configured on only one socket at a time. it's been a few months but from memory the x4 setting was not even available as a setting in the bios on one of the sockets.
Ok.

rean1mator wrote:
it's possible the manual is incorrect?
Yes, it's possible. Anything that involves human beings may possibly be incorrect.

rean1mator wrote:
..and based on this thread:
http://www.tomshardware.com/answers/id-3834621/pci-x16-gtx-1080ti-sing le-card-1440p.html

there aren't many mobo's that can run two m.2 slots at x4 speed simultaneously.
This is true ... not many, but some. And the ASUS Prime Z370-A may be one of them.

rean1mator wrote:
but also, i'm running a super highend gtx 1080 ti which may cannabilize some of the available bandwidth so maybe that was the reason?
I'm fairly sure that statement is correct.

rean1mator wrote:
also, sata mode can never have pcie x2 or x4 setting because it doesn't use the pcie bus to transfer the data.
M.2 slot #2 doesn't offer SATA mode, it is a PCIe-only slot. Second, read this quote, it's taken from the article at the link.

LINK = https://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/asus-prime-z370-a-atx-motherboard  ,5506.html

(QUOTE) "The Prime Z370-A supports keeping all three of its x16-length slots active, even when hosting two M.2 drives, which should be seen as a significant benefit by anyone who might ever consider installing two M.2 drives. Sharing problems are still present but lessened, as the second M.2 slot gets only two PCIe lanes until the user goes into firmware and sets the slot to x4 mode, which disables two of the SATA ports. That shouldn’t be much of a problem for most buyers at this market level, since four SATA ports are still available when both M.2 cards are configured in PCIe 3.0 x4 mode. If you mean to install more hardware than that, you can probably afford to go even further upmarket on the board, too."



Here's another ....

LINK = http://www.tomshardware.com/answers/id-3754774/asus-z370-970-evo-nvme- intel-optane-32gb.html

(QUOTE) "Both M.2 slots have their own dedicated PCIe lanes so using one will not affect the other."



And another .....

LINK = https://www.asus.com/us/Motherboards/PRIME-Z370-A/specifications/

(QUOTING LIST OF FEATURES)

"1 x M.2 Socket 3, , with M Key, type 2242/2260/2280 storage devices support (SATA mode & X4 PCIE mode)*1

1 x M.2 Socket 3, , with M Key, type 2242/2260/2280 storage devices support (PCIE mode only)*2

*1. The M.2_1 socket shares SATA_1 port when use M.2 SATA mode device. Adjust BIOS settings to use a SATA device.

*2. The M.2_2 socket shares SATA_56 ports when use M.2 PCIE mode device in X4 mode. Adjust BIOS settings to use M.2 PCIE devices in X4 mode."




Lastly, here's the picture from the ASUS website.

LINK = https://www.asus.com/us/Motherboards/PRIME-Z370-A/overview/





So I don't know what to say on this. All I can do is present the information that I've located. Beyond that, it's going to be a good month or so before I'll be applying power to this board.

seriously, i just don't get it seriously, i just don't get it seriously, i just don't get it
Rex Coil 7
JohnLRice wrote:
If you are willing to occasionally connect to the internet for updates and product registration and have antivirus installed etc then you probably wont run into problems? It's getting harder and harder to stay off-line though. sad banana

I keep my DAW off line completely (running Windows 8.1) and the main issue is third party apps that MUST connect to the internet, either once or occasionally to "update the app" (more likely to verify you aren't using a stolen version and rape your hard drive for valuable marketing info IMHO meh hihi ).

When Sony owned the Vegas line of video editing apps you could register using a separate computer if your NLE computer (Non Linear Editor - video equivalent of a DAW) wasn't online. When the Vegas products were sold off to Magix I happily updated to the newest version when it came out but quickly discovered I have to connect to the internet not once but once per month to keep it working. That's a big nope, I don't want to run antivirus/antimalware/network services etc on my DAW, or constantly be enabling/disabling stuff or hassling with multi boot setups etc so I go my money back.

If you want to stay completely off line these days make sure before you buy any software that you verify that you can run it off line and register via a different computer that is online.
Well, we know Ableton may be registered off line, but as far as Win10 goes, I've no clue!

Does Windows 10 do offline registration? Anyone? seriously, i just don't get it
Rex Coil 7
One other thing .... is Windows 10 Pro necessary or would Windows 10 Home work without any issues?


hmmm.....
jsco
Quote:
Does Windows 10 do offline registration? Anyone?

yes:
https://www.quora.com/Will-Windows-10-install-without-internet

Quote:
One other thing .... is Windows 10 Pro necessary or would Windows 10 Home work without any issues?

home should be fine.
https://www.pcworld.com/article/2952408/windows/who-needs-windows-10-p ro-5-reasons-to-upgrade.html
IR
I think it might depend which DAW you want to install.

I remember trying to install Kristal (free, but not open-source) offline to XP, and it did not fully work correctly. I don't remember the details, I think you needed internet to install it, but copying the elements and putting it on another computer did not work correctly. It sort of worked, badly though.
adam
microsoft laid off a bunch of testers so the updates aren't all that reliable, it's always been the case that updates don't work on old hardware, mine was fine for 2 years then broke one day, i'm using linux at the moment while i work out how to recover my software licences, plan is to run win 10 in a vm that doesn't have access to the net, i think this is the only way to keep it usable, but i doubt a vm will be great for daws etc
angora
Rex Coil 7 wrote:

rean1mator wrote:
..and based on this thread:
http://www.tomshardware.com/answers/id-3834621/pci-x16-gtx-1080ti-sing le-card-1440p.html

there aren't many mobo's that can run two m.2 slots at x4 speed simultaneously.
This is true ... not many, but some. And the ASUS Prime Z370-A may be one of them.


Hi Rex,

From what I can see, You won't be able to run any m.2 drives at full speed on that motherboard if you are using the onboard M.2 slots. You'll need to buy a PCIe m.2 adaptor board and install it in one of the PCIe slots after setting your MB to 8/8 mode. The onboard m.2 slots will be wired to operate through the chipset which means you are still limited to DMI transfers to the CPU for I/O.


When it comes to m.2 drives, the slots on the motherboard don't mean much, they are there mostly for marketing purposes. The exception would be laptops where the physical space saving is a benefit regardless of performance. What you really care about are PCIe lanes. On a consumer chipset like the z370 on your motherboard, you have 16 PCIe lanes while an X99 or x299 motherboard will support up to 40 PCIe depending on what the CPU supports.

When using PCIe devices, you need to stay at or under the number of lanes supported by the motherboard/cpu combo. Graphics cards can run in 16 or 8 channel mode and m.2 drives require 4 channels per drive.

If we use your motherboard for example, you can do the following

1) 1 graphics card in 16 channel mode
2) 2 graphics cards in 8 channel mode
3) 1 graphics card in 8 channel mode + 2 m.2 drives
4) 4 m.2 drives (and use the CPU graphics)

In comparison, someone with a X99 motherboard and a 5860k CPU could run a graphics card in 16 channel mode and still have lanes for up to 6 m.2 drives.

Here are some block diagrams to show the difference:

https://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/chipsets/performance-chipsets/ x99-chipset-diagram.html

https://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/embedded/products/kaby-lake-s/ specifications.html




The good news for you is that PCIe m.2 adaptor cards are dirt cheap ($20), and setting your graphics card to 8 channel mode won't degrade your performance. Guinness ftw!


Hope that helps!
Koekepan
This whole thread seems to sum up to:

Software is getting demanding about network connections, the implication in Windows 10 is that you have to jump through hoops, or hope that nothing terrible will happen to support for your hardware and software before your next gig or deadline. Can it work? Sure. Will it work? Maybe.

Unfortunately, across the aisle it's not a lot better. Apple have long abandoned their backwards compatibility gentlemen's agreement, to the point that working artists mothball old versions of their Apple computers as working fossils. Add to that Apple's weirdly paternalistic attitude, and while it might be OK, it might very easily not.

Linux is fine, mostly, except for support. Your mileage will surely vary.

I can and do still use software, but the conduct of the big boys in software makes more sense if you think of it as a sinister plot to push hardware purchases.
commodorejohn
In my experience supporting end users on Win10, most of the real annoyances come from the update service - it's after updates that drivers just magically vanish, preferences get reset to what MS thinks they should be, and mysterious breakages happen. So taking the computer offline completely, preventing updates, should resolve a lot of that.

That said, while the core system is pretty solid, it's not all sunshine and roses even without the update woes. Compatibility with older software is noticeably worse in 8/10 than in 7, so if you have particular programs that are important for your workflow, make sure you check how well they work on 10. You may also have a devil of a time with its auto-scaling feature on high-DPI displays, which as a general rule works when you don't want it to and doesn't work when you do.

I've also seen multiple DAW-oriented users here and elsewhere complain about latency issues, but I can't speak to that myself.

In short, unless you have a compelling reason to use it, I'd stick with what you know works for you.
jsco
Quote:
From what I can see, You won't be able to run any m.2 drives at full speed on that motherboard if you are using the onboard M.2 slots.

why do you say this? one drive should be able to run at full speed. it looks like two would be limited in terms of simultaneous throughput by the chipset bandwidth, but even then, this would only be an issue in special situations (like RAIDing for performance reasons, or copying between drives). right?

Quote:
3) 1 graphics card in 8 channel mode + 2 m.2 drives
4) 4 m.2 drives (and use the CPU graphics)

rex is not using a GPU, so case 4 seems totally fine here. if he adds a GPU, he'll be in case 3, which is also totally fine. (8x vs 16x PCIe bandwidth has a negligible graphics performance impact, at least as of dec 2018, with the minor exception of using two RTX GPUs in SLI without an nvlink bridge.)

am i missing something? i don't think there's any case at all for getting a PCIe m.2 adapter.
angora
jsco wrote:
why do you say this? one drive should be able to run at full speed. it looks like two would be limited in terms of simultaneous throughput by the chipset bandwidth, but even then, this would only be an issue in special situations (like RAIDing for performance reasons, or copying between drives). right?


Hey jsco! Using the on-board m.2 slots will indeed be limited by the bandwidth of the chipset. The m.2 drives will not only share that bandwith with each other, but also all other devices that can not talk directly to the CPU. This will include any audio.

I've never tested how much of penalty you receive for going through the chipset without contention from other devices. I would imagine it wouldn't matter for a DAW though. Any decent m.2 drive is overkill for a DAW anyways. I would imagine that he'd be lucky to hit 1GB/sec read, but that is still faster than getting 290-ish MB/Sec from a SATA SSD.

From a practical perspective, I think he would be fine just plugging in the m.2 cards into the motherboard. In retrospect, my response was probably to "focused on non-practical facts". Haha.

jsco wrote:

Quote:
3) 1 graphics card in 8 channel mode + 2 m.2 drives
4) 4 m.2 drives (and use the CPU graphics)

rex is not using a GPU, so case 4 seems totally fine here. if he adds a GPU, he'll be in case 3, which is also totally fine. (8x vs 16x PCIe bandwidth has a negligible graphics performance impact, at least as of dec 2018, with the minor exception of using two RTX GPUs in SLI without an nvlink bridge.)

am i missing something? i don't think there's any case at all for getting a PCIe m.2 adapter.


For $20, it is totally worth it just for the overkill factor. There isn't really much to these cards. They really make you apreciate how right-on-the-metal m.2 drives are. The adapter cards all have 2 m.2 slots on them. So, he'd only need one. I think PCIe lanes can be confusing because most people never have to think about it. So I wanted to give an example, but yeap, he'd be either #3 or #4.

You are correct, there is minimal performance (if any) between 16 and 8 mode for graphics cards from what I've seen. I'm more focused on optimized storage IO since that is a problem for me in my day job.

IMO, his motherboard will work well for a DAW. Oh... also, Windows Updater hates me with a passion. It's out to get me!
Rex Coil 7
I have some replies to tackle here, but just to get it said ....

I've caved in, just gonna go for it and use Windows 10. My motherboard will be happier. I'm also going to go back to using a 1TB HDD in combination with an M.2 slot 250GB NVME SSD PCIe x4 (the Samsung 970 EVO). So that controversy is over with.

Here's the list .. (red line items have yet to be purchased, everything else has been purchased already) ....

* ASUS Prime Z370-A motherboard.
* Intel i7-8700 CPU.
* Aftermarket air cooler for the CPU (Cooler Master 212).
* 16GB DDR4 3000mhz RAM.
* 250GB NVME SSD running in an M.2 PCIe x4 slot ("boot drive" and programs)
* 1TB Toshiba HDD, 7,200 RPM, SATA3 (sample libraries and generated content).
* CD/DVD drive of some brand/model.
* No graphics card, at least for now.
* EVGA 500 watt PSU ("80 Bronze" rated).
* One or two chassis fans (most likely "Noctua").
* Windows 10 Home.
* Ableton Live 9 Standard (I already own it).

I've written the seller of the 1TB Samsung M.2 SSD and politely asked if I may return it. There's $280.00 back in my wallet.

hmmm.....
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