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My Windows 7 vs. Windows 8 DAWBench Results
Old 22nd September 2012
  #61
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Bob Olhsson's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
This was five years ago. There had just been a big jump in calculations per cycle that doubled the effective speed and there have been several jumps since then. As you say, apples to apples comparisons are not easy. I don't see how the basic principle changes if all things are in fact equal.
Old 22nd September 2012 | Show parent
  #62
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TAFKAT's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Olhsson ➡️
This was five years ago. There had just been a big jump in calculations per cycle that doubled the effective speed and there have been several jumps since then. As you say, apples to apples comparisons are not easy. I don't see how the basic principle changes if all things are in fact equal.
The basic principle hasn't changed , but there has been some significant improvements in architecture that has shifted the dots in our favour.

I did extensive work in testing and reporting the actual level of diminishing returns in regards to x-scaling ( x - being the number of cores ) with Cubendo/SONAR/Reaper around 2007/8 using the first gen Core2 architecture , 2 to 4 to 8 cores which had a few extra curves to navigate without the onboard memory controller. For example , in Dual Socket systems we were dealing with added levels of arbitration via FSB sans QPI which hobbled the earlier incarnations of the dual socket systems for quite a while - later addressed ( to a degree) in the 2nd gen and also later BIOS updates for the first gen.

The current architecture with OBMC/QPI scales significantly better in both single and dual socket configurations , so the diminishing returns we experienced on the older architecture is measurably reduced.

Old 22nd September 2012 | Show parent
  #63
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🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Olhsson ➡️
That matches what friends who are developers told me when I was deciding between a slower 8 core and a faster 4 core computer. I was told the point of diminishing returns for a single application is 4 which would make 5 ideal assuming all other factors are equal. The others are the number of DSP calculations per cycle which multiplies the effective clock rate and the speed of the RAM buffer.
Sorry for the OT, here, but I don't think you can apply a number like that to it. Each thread has a management and synchronization cost which dependends upon the hardware implementation, OS threading/process model, and app threading model. (If the number was really 5, the whole massively parallel distributed computing model, which is not identical but shares many of the same constraints, simply wouldn't work)

Where multiple threads really shine is when you can do several things independently, concurrently without waiting on results of one of the other threads. Best example of that is the massive parallel processing done by video cards.

I imagine rendering audio from a number of plug-ins could fit that up until the mixing stage. Once there, I'm out of my territory

As an aside, one benefit of multi-core, multi-processor systems is the ability to do *other* stuff while the processor intensive apps are running. I have 6 real cores overclocked at around 4.2GHz. I can encode video while surfing youtube or being productive in something else, if i want.

Back to the topic, it does seem odd that Sonar would be optimized for a single thread from the start given the inherent parallelism of much of what you do in a DAW. I'd love to hear their explanation for that (from someone on the tech side, not a front-end support person)

Pete
Old 22nd September 2012 | Show parent
  #64
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🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Psychlist1972 ➡️
Back to the topic, it does seem odd that Sonar would be optimized for a single thread from the start given the inherent parallelism of much of what you do in a DAW. I'd love to hear their explanation for that (from someone on the tech side, not a front-end support person)
Hey Pete,

Its never been stated that SONAR is optimised for for single thread operation , sorry if that has been implied on my part.

I did try and get a higher grasp of the threading models available and being utilised by the the DAW devs , Synchronous/Asynchronous/Anticipative / , and I have a basic understanding of how they apply to DAW usage, but the finer detail is over my head. Trying to get the devs to speak openly about details in this department is extremely difficult as you could understand, however from my understanding SONAR/Steinberg/Reaper use variations of the Asynchronous models, Reaper calling theirs Anticipative , the exact subtleties again are over my head.

With regards to the law of diminishing returns for DAW's there is another variable that is unique in respect to the working latency of the audio interface, where as you drive the latency down the return decreases measurably. Numerous variables are in play - execution at the architecture level, Cache/Core efficiency/synchronization , memory throughput/latency all play a part, as well as the actual efficiency of the audio driver. Throw in the DAW's multi-threading model and how it arbitrates to the O.S Task Scheduler, etc, and we have quite a few curves to navigate.

FWIW - I highlighted a lot of the above in a DAW X-Scaling Shootout in 2008 across Nuendo/Reaper/Sonar when I had 2 development systems of identical architecture and clockspeed , one being a single Quad , the other being a Dual Socket Quad . This allowed me to get a accurate reference of scaling going from 4-8 cores not only in regards to the increase in core count , but also the diminishing return in regards to latency across the 3 DAW hosts.

I think Bob will be interested in the x-scaling performance of Nuendo/Reaper in that report, it wasn't quite linear going from 4-8 cores, but it wasn't far off and definitely a lot better than the assertion that everything drops off sharply after 5 cores. The reason I didn't include SONAR in the above, hmmm, well essentially it collapsed at the lower latencies. The reasoning is detailed in the report and has been my bugbear with the devs for the lack of acknowledgement and dismissal over the years , I do hope that SX2 has improved the situation, if not, I'll be the bad guy again highlighting it.. :-)

And before anyone brings up Protools, lets just say that it has its own set of unique idiosyncrasies in regards to multi-threading assignment and arbitration, in short, its a bloody minefield which is not consistent across plugins and virtual instruments.. joy !

I digress,

Getting back to the parallel distributed computing model that you mentioned , which both Intel and M.S are very heavily invested in moving forward ( I have a trusted friend who over the years has been a developer at M.S , then Intel and now back at M.S again ). I know of projects from a few years back that were working on models of core counts in the triple figures , Intels own Xeon PHi Co processors are a hint of whats to come, 50/64 Cores /4 threads per core - (extended X86) , so its obvious the older model doesn't really hold much sway in the current climate.

If DAW developers can utilise the Phi architecture , the skys the limit... :-)

Old 22nd September 2012 | Show parent
  #65
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🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by TAFKAT ➡️
Hey Pete,
Its never been stated that SONAR is optimised for for single thread operation , sorry if that has been implied on my part.
Thanks. My misunderstanding. I read the config variable as a threadcount and was...surprised

Sounds like it's probably more a model identifier or something.

All the rest sounds reasonable. Massively parallel has some interesting things going on in specific spaces. For consumers (who now drive most design decisions in hw - notice lack of screens above "HD") there's no real killer app just yet, so it continues to proceed slowly and mostly in research with anything beyond video cards.

Pete
Old 23rd September 2012 | Show parent
  #66
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I assume W8 to be optimized for two things PCI-E 16 and SSD's. So the connection between RAM and SSd's is now superfast 800mhz bus and SATA 600. So maybe the W8 core switches to old technology when presented HDD and stuff like BIOS. and not UEFI...

If those items are present in a system... I'm quite sure stuff will test out differently...

Simply seeing old hardware in these presented tests...
I now have a new i7 laptop (yes with a 1000 gb 2,5 incg HDD (and 6 GB RAM)...
The processor has hypertreading and is baked at 22nm.. I really feel that fast bus in this system... And the laptop (Intel Inspiron 17R) can be easily expanded with MSATA... would probably be blazing fast with the MSATA being used as C drive... And now Samsung comes with 100GB memory chips TB disks won't be long... Big performance boosts are coming.. I'm quite sure W8 will outperform W7 (untill SP2)
Old 23rd September 2012 | Show parent
  #67
Quote:
Originally Posted by muziekschuur ➡️
I assume W8 to be optimized for two things PCI-E 16 and SSD's. So the connection between RAM and SSd's is now superfast 800mhz bus and SATA 600. So maybe the W8 core switches to old technology when presented HDD and stuff like BIOS. and not UEFI...

If those items are present in a system... I'm quite sure stuff will test out differently...
So I'm seeing a 41% performance drop on Windows 8 because I don't have an SSD? heh

Of course Microsoft tries to target modern hardware with their newer OSes, but just because they're adding new support for one technology doesn't mean a serious deficiency in support for another technology should result.

Anyway, the point of my own tests was to attempt to answer the question, "Will my existing Windows 7 DAW setup benefit from an upgrade to Windows 8?" So the idea is exactly to find out how it runs on existing, common hardware- not the latest stuff on the market. Most audio interfaces still use old, established buses anyway, and this will continue until the majority of PCs on producers' desks have the latest tech.
Old 23rd September 2012 | Show parent
  #68
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TAFKAT's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by UltimateOutsider ➡️
So I'm seeing a 41% performance drop on Windows 8 because I don't have an SSD? heh
You know I reread that post 5 times and still have absolutely no idea what he was trying to convey.. :-(

I'll have some numbers up this week on the X58 and ASAP with the X79 , the later having an SSD and UEFI, that should nip it in the bud... :-)

Old 23rd September 2012 | Show parent
  #69
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Goddard's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by TAFKAT ➡️
I had already covered the area of editing the Audio.ini with the devs back in the day, and my question then and still is, why is it necessary ?

I would expect that by default the audio engine should already be optimised for higher core/thread counts.

The spiked thread is the "worker thread" from my understanding.

I'll test SONAR with the default settings as the devs did in their reports.

I am not really interested in circumnavigating SONAR's inherent idiosyncrasies to be honest , the whole area of multiprocessor optimisation is a discussion I exhausted with the devs a long time ago.
Hey Vin, just found this thread.

Don't hurt your brain with Sonar anymore!

Your offering us a test for Sonar X1/X2 on Win 7/8 is plenty enough, thanks. Just give us the tool, we can tweak "Audio.ini' on our own if we want.

(FWIW, I suspect the default settings are conservative safe ones to allow the program to work on a minimum requirements system.)

=G
Old 25th September 2012 | Show parent
  #70
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TAFKAT's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Hey All,

I finished up the first round of Win7 v Win8 benchmarks using SONAR X1d and Cubase 6.5.3.

Worksheet of the results posted below , I'll get to the graphs when I get some clear air.



System : i7 920 : X58 : 12GB DDR3 12800 : RME HDSP AIO : Driver 3.29

Quick summary :

My results in SONAR do not in any way correlate with Cakewalks claims, not that it is of any surprise to me to be honest , but they also do not correlate to the figures posted by U.O.

Performance of Cubase and SONAR using the RME HDSPe card was essentially identical across Win7/Win8 , I didn't experience the large variance that U.O reported using the numerous interfaces that he tested , so the question remains whether its the drivers themselves or the fact that I am using the RTM version, not the RP.

When I get some time I will also retest with my reference FF800 unit to see if any variable is evident using FW.

Cubase still performs measurably better than SONAR X1 ( Yes I will test with X2 when I get some energy , but I am not expecting any significant change )

There is definitely still some grey areas in regards to drivers and copy protection

iLok continues to give me grief in Win8 , where I lost communication with the key on opening a session in Cubase which subsequently crashed Cubase and required the ilok to be plugged into another port to be recognised correctly again.

Waves CP using a USB drive simply doesn't work on Win8 RTM and Waves have informed me they cannot help me at this time.

With performance in Win 8 being on par to Win 7 , I am in no hurry to waste further energy trying to circumnavigate the idiosyncrasies of Win8. Personally I hate the whole Metro/Tile B.S , there are issues and question marks over drivers and the FW stack ,etc, so I'll be running with 7 for not only my systems but for clients systems for as long as its available. I'll continue testing and R&D with Win8 but I honestly think its going to be Vista II, for me at least.

YMMV

Old 25th September 2012 | Show parent
  #71
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🎧 10 years
thanks Vin for your continued hard work in this

Your results bear out my initial impressions of running windows 8 with a couple of my test projects, which is why I was surprised at the OP's 41% performance drop.

I'm not sure why he's experiencing issues,as most people like myself who've tried out W8 haven't seen the performance drop.

Would like to see your 2011 cpu benchmarks, as I'm about to upgrade

interestingly, Scott said that 2011 cpu's need 1.35v ram NOT 1.5v I've not heard this before, can you shed any light on that?


MC
Old 25th September 2012 | Show parent
  #72
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🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by TAFKAT ➡️
You know I reread that post 5 times and still have absolutely no idea what he was trying to convey.. :-(

I'll have some numbers up this week on the X58 and ASAP with the X79 , the later having an SSD and UEFI, that should nip it in the bud... :-)


Cool..... Looking forward to that.
Old 25th September 2012 | Show parent
  #73
Quote:
Originally Posted by TAFKAT ➡️
With performance in Win 8 being on par to Win 7 , I am in no hurry to waste further energy trying to circumnavigate the idiosyncrasies of Win8. Personally I hate the whole Metro/Tile B.S , there are issues and question marks over drivers and the FW stack ,etc, so I'll be running with 7 for not only my systems but for clients systems for as long as its available. I'll continue testing and R&D with Win8 but I honestly think its going to be Vista II, for me at least.
So it's looking like your tests rule out any fundamental PCIe issues, yeah?

At this point I think the most likely explanation for the poor showing of the PCIe-424 on my setup is the drivers. (Logo-compliant on Windows 7, but not officially supported on Win 8 yet.) With the UltraLite-mk3 it could be either drivers or a FireWire issue (or both)- since I have heard numerous folks complain about Win 8 FireWire support.

The take-aways for me are 1) It's probably not as bad as it was seeming from my PCIe/FireWire tests, as long as you have different interfaces from mine (only my USB interfaces performed well on Win 8), and 2) It's probably not as good as the Cakewalk people were thinking.

My Waves stuff doesn't work on Windows 8 either, and I hate not having a Start menu. I will be skipping Win 8 for as long as that's feasible.

Thanks for your work!

EDIT: I was using the RTM version of Win 8 Pro, 64-bit, so I think we were on the same OS.
Old 25th September 2012
  #74
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🎧 10 years
I tested with a Steinberg MR816 FireWire and it was fine.


mc
Old 25th September 2012 | Show parent
  #75
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🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by norbury brook ➡️
I tested with a Steinberg MR816 FireWire and it was fine.
Hey Marcus,

Its a moving target with FW as the stack has been changed ( they removed the signed legacy driver which resolved a lot of issues previously). I have already seen reports of other interfaces that performed perfectly under Win7 falling in a heap under Win8. I am actively trying to get M.S to listen to returning the legacy driver , otherwise its going to be a crap shoot IMO.

I have a friend at M.S dev, hmmm, might be time to call in a favour... :-)

Re the issues with the MOTU PCIe , it has to be drivers in that case whereas the RME HDSPe performed identically.

Re Cakewalk, I'm sure they will just dismiss my findings as they have in the past and continue on their merry way pimping their internal meter as being a more accurate indicator.. :-)

I'll try and cover as many interfaces as I can , but to be perfectly honest unless my hand is forced by M.S culling availability of Win7 , I won't be navigating to Win8 any time soon.

I am hoping they come to their senses for Win 9.. :-)

Old 25th September 2012 | Show parent
  #76
Quote:
Originally Posted by TAFKAT ➡️
I'll try and cover as many interfaces as I can , but to be perfectly honest unless my hand is forced by M.S culling availability of Win7 , I won't be navigating to Win8 any time soon.

I am hoping they come to their senses for Win 9.. :-)
Yeah, the only reason I'm keeping my Win 8 partition is to retest if MOTU ever releases Win 8-certified drivers for my interfaces. Until then I'm happy to know I'm not missing anything by sticking with Win 7.
Old 26th September 2012
  #77
Gear Nut
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
Thanks for all the research, testing and commentary. I've been trying Sonar X2 on Windows 8 up to RTM. While Windows 8 certified drivers work, they are not truly compatible. For the UA-25 EX I had to revert to the Vista 64-bit driver to get compatibility. My Lynx AES-16 kicks up a storm - not happy with Win 8. I'm making the assumption that new "compatible" drivers will be required. It's been hit and miss with printer drivers on Windows 8 as well. Windows 8 is interesting to play with but I don't expect my DAW to really perform until everything catches up.
Old 26th September 2012
  #78
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1 Review written
🎧 10 years
Don't put down Neil at Cakewalk. His blog on Windows 8 is an evolving and thoughtful document. No one has many of the keys to Windows 8 yet and he's doing a decent job of explaining the new stuff vis a vis music recording.

I'm talking to myself here but it's sorta funny how the bogeyman discussion of Windows 8 parallels the negativity that surrounded Windows 7. There was a lot of loyalty to XP back then that dissipated over time. Win7 pioneers got a lot of arrows in the back and scuffed knees from falling on their faces. They prevailed and now Windows 7 is the stable platform. I can't wait to shift.
Old 26th September 2012 | Show parent
  #79
Quote:
Originally Posted by sdpate ➡️
Don't put down Neil at Cakewalk. His blog on Windows 8 is an evolving and thoughtful document. No one has many of the keys to Windows 8 yet and he's doing a decent job of explaining the new stuff vis a vis music recording.

I'm talking to myself here but it's sorta funny how the bogeyman discussion of Windows 8 parallels the negativity that surrounded Windows 7. There was a lot of loyalty to XP back then that dissipated over time. Win7 pioneers got a lot of arrows in the back and scuffed knees from falling on their faces. They prevailed and now Windows 7 is the stable platform. I can't wait to shift.
Are you sure you're not thinking of the time before the Vista release? I don't remember much negative buzz around Win 7, except maybe from Mac fans.

Anyway, I don't think anyone here was putting the Cakewalk folks down. It does seem that people were reading a lot more into their test results than they should have. It's not necessarily the Cakewalk camp's fault.

I can only speak for myself regarding Windows 8 and what it means. I am a systems developer for a company that makes consumer and enterprise Windows compatible hardware. I've been coding for and using Windows 8 literally every day at work since before there were any public preview distributions. I loved writing for and working with Windows 2000, XP, and Win 7. Vista had some good ideas (almost all of which were refined in Win 7), but was bloated and lacked widespread vendor support at release. Win 7 only went as smoothly as it did at launch because most vendors finally had Vista support by then, and their drivers mostly grandfathered into the new platform.

My first gripe with Windows 8 is the UI redesign. I know why they did it, but think it's a huge mistake to make it compulsory. For me and all of my fellow developers, it's a workflow killer. We all have batch files on our desktops and items pinned to our taskbars that do things in Win 8 we used to be able to do with just a click or two in Windows 7 but now require lots of hovering, waiting, and typing to do in Windows 8. Metro and the crippling of Desktop mode add zero value to my work as a developer and musician. In fact, they needlessly add a lot of extra typing and screens. Windows 8 is the most anti-mouse PC OS Microsoft has developed since DOS. All of this is irrelevant to the performance discussion, of course.

My second gripe has been this weird perception among tech types that Windows 8 is some kind of major improvement over Windows 7. There are some incremental optimizations here and there, and it's generally not worse than Win 7 in terms of day-to-day use, UI issues notwithstanding. But it doesn't perform any better in any meaningful way that I or my peers have observed in nearly a year of daily experience with it. Historically, new Microsoft operating systems perform worse on the same hardware than their predecessors. (The notable exception being Vista->Win 7, where improved performance on legacy hardware was an explicit goal of the release.) It only makes sense; their feature sets and resource requirements grow, and they focus on targeting new technologies as they become available. But where is this perception that Windows 8 is so much leaner and meaner than Windows 7 coming from? The best that I would hope for is that it doesn't perform worse than Win 7 on an existing PC. If it does better here or there, that's just icing.

Anyway, there was no agenda behind this endeavor other than seeing whether any of the changes in Windows 8 affect or improve DAW performance.
Old 26th September 2012 | Show parent
  #80
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TAFKAT's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by sdpate ➡️
Don't put down Neil at Cakewalk. His blog on Windows 8 is an evolving and thoughtful document. No one has many of the keys to Windows 8 yet and he's doing a decent job of explaining the new stuff vis a vis music recording.
Not sure what you are actually reading and comprehending !

The only reason Cakewalk is even getting a mention in any of these proceedings is that they publicly made statements indicating that according to their internal development performance testing , Windows 8 is a significant improvement over Windows 7 for DAW usage.

Neil's Blog keeps getting referenced as a clear indicator of the true state of play, however on my first reading some flags were thrown up on how they came to the conclusions of the performance improvements when they were based on an internal meter used by the developers. The metric used as I expected didn't pan out comparatively against the more established and publicly available /cross platform/ multi DAW host methodology I provide. The DAWbench methodology is not exactly Real World as some have argued but it is far more accurate than reading a meter and is closer to a Real World environment of incrementally loading a session to break point, instead of reading a meter and trying to gauge a performance metric by comparing the variance.

Quote:
I'm talking to myself here but it's sorta funny how the bogeyman discussion of Windows 8 parallels the negativity that surrounded Windows 7. There was a lot of loyalty to XP back then that dissipated over time. Win7 pioneers got a lot of arrows in the back and scuffed knees from falling on their faces. They prevailed and now Windows 7 is the stable platform.
You are only talking to yourself because you seem confused or are attempting to rewrite history. Show me evidence of any negativity towards the shift to Windows 7 ?

What you are referring to is Vista , which Neil and the Cake team hyped to High Heaven as a major improvement over XP for DAW usage. There was a lot to column space dedicated to that by the Cake developers and even a DAW builder who will remain nameless that released a flawed report showing these alleged huge improvements. As is happening now, the reports were picked up and mimicked as gospel by the community until we took a closer look and found that the reports didn't stack up, the rest is History.

3 Part investigation of XP v XP x64 v Vista I did back in the day Here

We will find our own truth.

Quote:
I can't wait to shift.


@ Ultimate Outsider,

Couldn't agree more with your post above, I share your sentiments on the Windows 8 UI , etc, I cant stand being in front of it and I am yet to hear one viable benefit for DAW/Workstation usage. Now that the so called performance angle has been placed into the grey area , ( and thats an understatement especially with the uncertainty of the FW stack, drivers, etc ) the total benefit sum for DAW's is ZERO , IMO.

Old 27th September 2012 | Show parent
  #81
Gear Nut
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
Win 7 Win 8

Thanks for the feedback. There was a ton of negativity towards Win 7 especially in the DAW world on the 64 bit platform because everything was optimized for 32 bit XP. I don't need to repeat history - Google it. I can remember being PO'd at Mackie because they didn't get the drivers for Win 7 for what seemed like years. I'm still PO'd because many of my plug-ins are 32 bit and I have use jBridge. DAW developers are so slow! The reluctance or inability to migrate technology allows new players to jump in, which is why the plug-in market is so interesting right now.

Microsoft has no choice but to move to the new UI. Apple's iPhone revenues alone exceed all of MS revenues at this point. About 400 million PCs will ship next year and 452 million iPhones. The world is going mobile and that's it.

It's about time since we did the mouse/desktop thing to death. The market is all about mobile. MS strategy is to put the same mobile UI on all screens. Some people say its a mistake, some like it. For DAW users stuck in the old way, there's no benefit but I see new DAW apps for the iPad/tablet world are already shipping. Change is a comin' and MS has to get with the program or shrink.

After a bit of head scratching, I pretty much replicated the Windows 7 world with "Desktop" so switching back and forth is easy. Cheers.
Old 27th September 2012 | Show parent
  #82
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🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by UltimateOutsider ➡️
My first gripe with Windows 8 is the UI redesign. I know why they did it, but think it's a huge mistake to make it compulsory. For me and all of my fellow developers, it's a workflow killer. We all have batch files on our desktops and items pinned to our taskbars that do things in Win 8 we used to be able to do with just a click or two in Windows 7 but now require lots of hovering, waiting, and typing to do in Windows 8. Metro and the crippling of Desktop mode add zero value to my work as a developer and musician. In fact, they needlessly add a lot of extra typing and screens. Windows 8 is the most anti-mouse PC OS Microsoft has developed since DOS. All of this is irrelevant to the performance discussion, of course.

I'm very interested, could you name such a think which was way faster UI wise in win7?

best regards!
Old 27th September 2012 | Show parent
  #83
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🎧 15 years
having spent some time in front of win8 as an end user (put it on my wifes system)
i have to say i hate it. but then i dont like change i am old and grumpy (like Vin)
i semi got used to it but not really. my wife is "oh its like my phone and tablet" (she does not have a touch screen LCD for her system) and i still had to install tweak everything for her.

i am with Vin on this, i will not be selling it until i cant get Win7 anymore or someone absoutely insists.

we are just now putting up a test system for audio/video as we wanted to wait for the release candidate and not fool with beta (it just showed up on our biz microsoft download a little bit ago)

as to win7 and people fighting it? really? it was the first and to date only OS i sold from day of release (usually wait a yr or first service pack)

you are talking about Vista.. which sucked until SP3

Scott
ADK
Old 27th September 2012 | Show parent
  #84
Quote:
Originally Posted by AreYouHuman ➡️
I'm very interested, could you name such a think which was way faster UI wise in win7?
  • Restarting windows
  • Recent documents
  • Launching any program
Every Win 8 developer and tester in my workplace has a "reboot.cmd" batch file on his or her desktop to restart Windows. Used to be 2 clicks.

People who used to have clean desktops now have items pinned all across their taskbars or icons all over their desktops to launch stuff they used to be able to get at with 2 clicks in the Start menu.

Many of us are using Stardock Start8, which is a Start menu replacement for Windows 8. Doesn't seem to have Recent Docs support though.

The RTM release has a little video that tells you how to hover in the corner to get to the sidebar. Before that, no one knew how to restart or shut down Windows without doing an Internet search. If a PhD in Computer Science has to resort to Google to figure out how to turn his computer off, your UI is broken.

Oh- one other thing that was a lot easier in Windows 7- using an optical drive! Half the people on my floor can't access their DVD drives once Windows 8 setup is complete- the same DVD drive they used to install the operating system, no less! The drives don't show up in My Computer or Device Manager, and don't enumerate on re-scan. I have to keep lending people my USB DVD drive whenever anyone needs to install Visual Studio.
Old 27th September 2012 | Show parent
  #85
Gear Head
 
🎧 10 years
My wife loved it, too. She immediately tried to touch the screen and move things around. Shame on me that the old 19'' Eizo I used for the test system is not a touch screen device, now I have to clean it and she's disappointed. ;-)

But I have to say: Win 8 is cool. I like it. I second TAFKAT's oservation that performance with my old RME 9652 and the Midex 8 is exactly the same in Cubase 5.5, no matter if I use Win 7 or 8 as platform.

For audio, Win 8 is simply just as good as Windows 7. Cubase 5.5 runs as fast and stable at 64 samples buffer latency (1.5ms) as it does on Windows 7. The audio performance was identical with a PCI audio card as it has been with Windows 7, even slightly better depending on the project, but never worse. DPC latency was as good (7-20 µs) as it is can be.

The Metro apps have one big advantage: They only eat up CPU as long as they are in the foreground if you don't allow them background activity in their settings, and they are always full screen - if you switch to another app or the desktop, they simply keep still as if they were not there.

The driver support is great - the only devices I had to deliver drivers were my MIDI interface and the RME audio card. Anything else was discovered automatically. This was the case on 2 PC and a VM.

Installation took less than 20 minutes (i7 2600k, 8 gig RAM, SSD as system disk). That's really fast.

Boot time: From the moment the BIOS initialization is done, it takes 3-4 seconds until you can log on. Not as Windows 7, the system is really ready then - no hard disk activity anymore, no delayed services, no waiting for network or components. Absolutely fantastic.

For every Metro app, you can decide which resources it may use, if it can connect to the internet, if it may use certain hardware as webcam or microphone, if it may display information on the start screen or the login screen, and so on.

Flash player is finally included, but only for websites that MS allows it to.

Metro is simply not made for mouse/keyboard. It's not funny to use Metro apps with mouse and/or keyboard. Yes it can be done, and it works, but it's hard work compared to earlier Windows versions, and you have to learn the new usage until you can work at all. For some of us it may even be a big challenge to get used to the fact that the mouse wheel now mostly works in a horizontal way.

No start button, no start menu. The Metro start page is where you run your programs. The desktop is very very similar to Windows 7, but it simply lacks the start menu. Either you use a third party dock app, or you put the non-metro apps that you often use as links on your desktop. You may use Classic Shell, but you will lose some search comfort of the Win 7 start menu search.

The system will work, but not very comfortable, if you don't have a Windows Live account. Anything is registered at Microsoft, the app store is only usable with a valid Live account. Windows 7 will probably be the last MS system that can be run pirated in a sensible way. A system that shines from the apps you can get at the store simply feels very castrated if you can't use the store at all (and you won't if you don't have a valid Windows license).

They have hidden the system image tool very carefully! Windows 7 was the very first MS system that had a decent and well working system image tool on board, you could create a system repair disk to be able to write the image back. Good bye TrueImage! Good bye Ghost! And now: Windows 8 still has it, but it's nearly impossible to find if you don't know what you're looking for.

Because Cubase still uses GDI for displaying its GUI, just as in Win 7 the best graphics card won't help your performance at all. The way to go in Win 8 is Direct2d/DirectWrite, and this could improve the performance significantly (just try out the Metro IE compared to the desktop one in Win 8 regarding display performance on complex web pages, and you will know what I mean), but as Cubase is available for OSX, too, it does not make any use of it and stays with GDI, perhaps some GDI+ (but that's unprobable). The CPU has to draw anything, the graphics card won't do any help.

If - and only if! - the Sonar version they used for their benchmarks is optimized for Direct2d/DirectWrite, there could indeed be a remarkable performance gain on a Windows 8 system with the right hardware. If not, that's just plain silly marketing Blah. We will never now.
Old 27th September 2012 | Show parent
  #86
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
The RTM release has a little video that tells you how to hover in the corner to get to the sidebar. Before that, no one knew how to restart or shut down Windows without doing an Internet search. If a PhD in Computer Science has to resort to Google to figure out how to turn his computer off, your UI is broken.
\
Bwahahahaha.. Dude i was like wth? my techs had installed in on the wifes compter (which btw she said no you dont have to buy me a touch screen ::sigh of relief:

so they call me back there saying its done come look.. they watched me and laughed as i got mad.. how in the wrold is the average person going to figure it out without touch screen..

even now that i know where the "start" is and the what ever you call it on the right is they are still a PITA to get to pop up.. arggh
CD? lol if you dont catch the very quick screen that pops up forget it.. then its how do i get to my computer again? ...

i can see with a touch screen how it might be a tad more enjoyable
maybe they will bring back voice command software.. like i remember having on a system from oh 94? (didnt work for crap)

Scott
ADK
Old 27th September 2012 | Show parent
  #87
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Psychlist1972's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
I wasn't going to get involved in this part of the thread, but I think I can help on a few things here.

Quote:
Originally Posted by UltimateOutsider ➡️
Every Win 8 developer and tester in my workplace has a "reboot.cmd" batch file on his or her desktop to restart Windows. Used to be 2 clicks.
They reboot that often? Admittedly, rebooting is not something *most* people do constantly. In Win7, an actual reboot was 3 clicks: Start: dropdown on shutdown button, click on reboot.

Now: open charms bar (mouse to bottom right corner or use Windows+C), then settings->Power

OR Windows+I to get settings and click power.

Or, on a tablet or laptop, use the soft power button

No need for a command file. It's not slower than the older versions, it's just different.

If you do reboot that often, one thing you should appreciate is just how fast Win8 reboots

Quote:
People who used to have clean desktops now have items pinned all across their taskbars or icons all over their desktops to launch stuff they used to be able to get at with 2 clicks in the Start menu.

Many of us are using Stardock Start8, which is a Start menu replacement for Windows 8. Doesn't seem to have Recent Docs support though.
Many people didn't like the change from Program Manager to the Start menu in Windows 95. Eventually it became the norm. Similarly, the Start page is not an efficiency problem, it's a familiarity problem.

Put your commonly used apps or desktop applications right at the left of the Start Page. Then open the start page with the mouse or by hitting the Windows key. If you don't see your app listed, open the app bar (swipe up, right click, or Windows+Z) and choose All Apps. Pin the ones you want to see all the time.

Bar far, most start menu users actually just open it up and then search for the app by typing the name. That still works: open the start page using one of the methods from above and just start typing. Voila: app search.

As for the task bar pinning: that's what it's there for. If you use a desktop application that often, definitely pin it to the task bar. My task bar in Win7 (on a 30" display) has like 20 things on it.

BTW, if you use multiple displays in Windows 8, the task bar can span the screens, so you could fit even more if you really wanted to.

I never (honestly, never) use Recent Docs so I don't have any info there.

Quote:
The RTM release has a little video that tells you how to hover in the corner to get to the sidebar. Before that, no one knew how to restart or shut down Windows without doing an Internet search. If a PhD in Computer Science has to resort to Google to figure out how to turn his computer off, your UI is broken.
There are plenty of examples of similar things in the past, most of which we've forgotton were new at the time: People needed to learn to right-click to get context menus. There was no on-screen help for that. People needed to learn to double-click. Again, no on-screen help or indicators for that.

People needed training to tell them how to pinch to zoom, swipe to navigate, etc. There's no on-screen help for that.

What I'm saying is these are new UI metaphors which will become the norm.

Don't forget, you can right-click at the bottom left corner to get additional power tools like System, device manager, computer management, command prompt, task manager, control panel, file explorer, search, run, and view your desktop)

Quote:
Oh- one other thing that was a lot easier in Windows 7- using an optical drive! Half the people on my floor can't access their DVD drives once Windows 8 setup is complete- the same DVD drive they used to install the operating system, no less! The drives don't show up in My Computer or Device Manager, and don't enumerate on re-scan. I have to keep lending people my USB DVD drive whenever anyone needs to install Visual Studio.
That's strange. Sounds like a problem with drivers or something on that machine. It's not a DVD video, right, but the actual DVD you used to install Win8 (Win8 isn't out on DVD yet. I assume you burned your own?). If it's for DVD video, that's a conscious decision to no longer include the DVD codecs in the base OS. DVD Codecs aren't free, and *most* machines purchased today do not have DVD drives. (Notebooks outsell everything else. Go to local stores and count percentages of which do or do not have optical drives). OEMS weren't happy having to pay to license a DVD codec (through Windows or separately) when they didn't even have a drive. It's available separately, however, for the end-user to purchase.

Also, you can now directly use an ISO, which couldn't be done without third-party drivers before. Also, installing off bootable USB thumb drive is REALLY fast.

Pete
Old 27th September 2012 | Show parent
  #88
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TAFKAT's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by UltimateOutsider ➡️
Many of us are using Stardock Start8, which is a Start menu replacement for Windows 8. Doesn't seem to have Recent Docs support though.
This is what I use - Classic Shell

Way more advanced than Start8 and fully customisable , also allows you to boot directly to desktop.

* You will see Metro for a split second tho *

FWIW: I used Classic Shell on Win7 as well.

@ Scott,

Who ya calling old and grumpy... LOL !

O.K here goes.

I wasn't going to get into it but the more I keep reading how similar complaints were heard in the past, that we just need to adapt, it will become the norm, etc, its pissing me off even more.

Can I learn to navigate around Win8's standard UI, sure, but to what advantage , personally there is none whats so ever.

I enjoy my Droid Phone, I will more than likely get a Win8 Tablet for the kids ( only due to Droid dropping Flash support - IDIOTS ) , I have no issue learning and navigating around different UI's, but horses for course. I also am very comfortable in OSX and numerous distros of Linux , none of which are as cumbersome and idiotic on the desktop as Win8/Metro !

In Win7 I have a super clean desktop , I launch applications either via the classic start menu in Classic Shell or on systems with a larger number of applications like the office/graphics/web/catch all I am typing on now, I use Stardock Object Dock. I have custom restart and shutdown applets I created years ago , all which I can use on Win8, so its not that different an experience, however I had to go the extra yard to bring back some familiarity.

The average Joe however will not have a clue, they will be like a lot of us on first glance, WTF, where is the ( fill in blank ), whats with these idiotic tiles all over my desktop that I can't swipe, why the Hell does it insist on creating a new tile any time I install anything, etc, etc,

Could I adapt , sure, do I want to, not in the slightest, and this is what M.S is missing and will ultimately be burned by. There is a vast majority of us that will see no need whats so ever to move to Win8 , the kernel improvements in Win7 brought us an O.S we all had wished for , its super stable , efficient and continues to perform perfectly for Workstation usage , the corporate sector will avoid Win8 like the plague, professional workstation users already on Win7 will avoid it like the plague IMO , new users that will have it imposed if given a choice will be running back to Win7 faster than Vista users ran to XP .

The other thing everyone seems to be overlooking is that Metro Apps and Desktop apps are entirely separate entities , Metro is simply an overlay , it is not integrated, you can't use ASIO drivers, etc , so all of the predictions of professional DAW's on Metro are more than a little misguided IMO.

Will we see advancements in tactile surfaces for control of DAW's , sure, but it won't be integrated into a single working environment via Metro, it will more then likely be a separate tablet/slate with a control application then being fed into a main system , i.e Ipad , Win8 will not bring anything different to the table there.

Now that I got that out..

Lets get back to the performance advantages of Windows 8 over Windows 7 for DAW usage , or should I say, lack of.

Old 28th September 2012 | Show parent
  #89
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Psychlist1972's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by TAFKAT ➡️
I wasn't going to get into it but the more I keep reading how similar complaints were heard in the past, that we just need to adapt, it will become the norm, etc, its pissing me off even more.
Not looking to tick anyone off, especially someone doing all the heavy lifting with the benchmarks.

I have been involved professionally with computers since 1990, and for hobby since the first half of the 80s. (I also worked in a music store selling synths in the late 80s and 90s, and MPU401 and similar MIDI interfaces, which was fun..oh, and all the used Jupiters that I WISH I had the forsight to snatch up at the time.)

I've also run every Microsoft OS (except Windows ME as I was on the Win2k/NT path at that time) since Windows 3.0, and early versions of DOS. I ran OS/2 for a bit as well, and most of the early versions of Linux after being introduced to it at a Boston Computer Society meeting way back.

Over that time, I've seen many of these arguments -- multiple times. I'm not discounting or ignoring what you're saying, I'm providing historical context and simply saying it's a repeating pattern both inside business and outside with consumers.
  • Most businesses saw no immediate benefit in moving from green screens or DOS-based apps to GUI. It took the new classes of apps, not having to memorize all those function keys and arcane commands, and the outside driving force of a new generation of users to change that.
  • Similarly, the move from mainframes to PCs.
  • Moving from crowded stacks of toolbars to the Office Ribbon
  • Similarly (but less dramatically so), the move from Win3.x to Win95. 16 bit applications to 32 bit applications.
  • Heck, many people here are fighting with DAW and plug-in manufacturers who see no benefit to 64 bit when 32 is "good enough". Is "good enough" really the bar we want to set?
Many companies are dealing with people bringing their iPads and Android tablets into work because that is their preferred mode of interaction. These are horrible to try to manage inside the infrastructure. Windows 8 makes that easier that by letting you use that form factor if you want, plus continue to use desktop apps (on x86/64 devices) if you want, plus make sure the PCs are manageable.

Much is made of the start screen, but once you've learned to use it, and have worked with it regularly, it's not in the way at all. Once you have found a few critical apps on the Modern UI/Windows Store side, you'll likely see it as a useful addition. Absolutely it shines on tablets, and on the new class of hybrid tablet/notebook computers.

Microsoft has supported touch/mobility in applications since 2002-ish with the Tablet PC. The problem is, unless the touch interfaces are in front of people, and unless the programming model requires it (as it does in WinRT apps), developers don't bother designing for touch, mobility, better battery life, social connections, etc. Being able to use those same apps on desktop, laptop, hybrid laptop/touch, and tablet is a good thing.

On the desktop, I think hiding the start page is a long-term mistake (like Program Manager look-alikes in Windows 95), as you're just incurring mental debt for later versions which build more upon what you see today. That said, folks will use whatever makes them efficient, and if you don't like it, you don't like it

Audio: Windows Store apps can use WASAPI and XAudio2 for audio both on x86/64 and ARM. I'm working with some vendors creating cool apps tailored for the platform using these APIs. Desktop apps on x86/64 can, of course, continue to use ASIO and anything else they need.

And yes, Windows 7 is an excellent OS. If that's what you decide to stick with, I certainly wouldn't complain. I think you'll miss out on some of the new stuff, but Win7 is proven and solid, and perhaps most importantly, well-tested with the DAW and driver manufacturers. It's people sticking with XP that I don't understand. heh.

As to DAW benchmarks and all that, I have no info there, and haven't independently tested anything, so I can neither disagree or agree with *any* of the results I've seen here. That said, I'm very interested in them, and will continue to monitor to get a handle on what's going on. I like the work you've been doing in this area; it keeps everyone on their toes

Pete
Old 28th September 2012 | Show parent
  #90
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TAFKAT's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Psychlist1972 ➡️
Not looking to tick anyone off, especially someone doing all the heavy lifting with the benchmarks.
Hey Pete,

I'm not ticked off , just venting..., I'm fighting a flu at the moment so I'm a little more.., hmmm, hypersensitive.. LOL

Quote:
[*]Heck, many people here are fighting with DAW and plug-in manufacturers who see no benefit to 64 bit when 32 is "good enough". Is "good enough" really the bar we want to set?
The slow transition to 64 Bit has nothing in common with the qualms of the fundamental UI changes that M.S are trying to impose. I'm not getting the correlation.

In regards to DSP plugins there is absolutely no benefit to native 64 bit support , its only for virtual instruments that require high memory address requirements. Re being good enough, you seem to be trying to imply that Windows7 is only "good enough" whereas Windows 8/ Metro is somehow a major and required development. I'm not feeling it. !

Windows 8 hasn't raised the bar with anything in regards to DAW's/Desktops.

Quote:
Many companies are dealing with people bringing their iPads and Android tablets into work because that is their preferred mode of interaction. These are horrible to try to manage inside the infrastructure. Windows 8 makes that easier that by letting you use that form factor if you want, plus continue to use desktop apps (on x86/64 devices) if you want, plus make sure the PCs are manageable.
Sure, so leave Metro on the portables that can utilize the tactile surfaces and are designed specifically for the UI and have a Desktop version of Win8 available with the under bonnet improvements sans the appendage. And before you say thats not possible, I already have a custom patch utilizing 3 files from Win7 that returns the Win7 UI/Explorer/Task Manager and totally eradicates Metro , totally !!

Leaving Win8 with the Win7 shell.

Of course I can't use that commercially, but it proves that it can be done.

Quote:
Much is made of the start screen, but once you've learned to use it, and have worked with it regularly, it's not in the way at all. Once you have found a few critical apps on the Modern UI/Windows Store side, you'll likely see it as a useful addition. Absolutely it shines on tablets, and on the new class of hybrid tablet/notebook computers.
You are not hearing me, I hate the tile interface on the desktop , I will never see it as anything but what I have already outlined.

Quote:
Audio: Windows Store apps can use WASAPI and XAudio2 for audio both on x86/64 and ARM. I'm working with some vendors creating cool apps tailored for the platform using these APIs. Desktop apps on x86/64 can, of course, continue to use ASIO and anything else they need.
As noted, totally separate entities that will never be a viable professional option IMO.

Quote:
As to DAW benchmarks and all that, I have no info there, and haven't independently tested anything, so I can neither disagree or agree with *any* of the results I've seen here. That said, I'm very interested in them, and will continue to monitor to get a handle on what's going on. I like the work you've been doing in this area; it keeps everyone on their toes
All the Benchmarks are available for download, so nothing stopping you dipping your toe in yourself.. :-)


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